The View From My Window

The world as seen from my window and through my eyes

Tragedy Makes Us Think April 17, 2007

Filed under: Uncategorized — auntlelo @ 7:15 am

As the tragic events unfolded yesterday on the campus of Virginia Tech, it reminded me how vulnerable we all are to the evil around us in this world. It was a sad commentary as I listened to the media already begin their Monday morning quarterbacking about how the campus administration should have done more, been more prepared, stopped this tragedy from happening. How easy it was for attention to swiftly be diverted from the fact that a lone gunman, bent on hurt and destruction, was really the responsible party. He was dead. We seem to need to have someone who is living to blame for this senseless act. Why, in our human nature, do we need to place blame on blameless people?

I listened to all manner of commentators yesterday and then finally turned off the TV. The administrators were at fault, it was lack of gun control, it was too much gun control, it was violence in movies and music and video games, it was…well, you get the picture.

No matter how you slice it, most tragedies like this one come down to a human being who ceases to value life—theirs or anyone else’s. It’s not the gun, it’s the person who wields it. It’s not the bomb, it’s the person who plants it. It’s not the alcohol, but, the person who drinks it. The person is the real weapon. No amount of controls on inanimate objects will help if a person is truly bent on destruction.

I’m sure there’s more we can do to prepare, there always is. However, just as in the days following 9-11, we come to a point past the shock and the grief and the anger when we have to return to our daily lives and not anticipate that every person we meet might be a terrorist. Tragedy makes us think. In my case, it’s not only how I can be prepared, but, also, what in my life is really important.

God bless those who lost loved ones in the Virginia Tech massacre yesterday. And thank God it wasn’t here.

 

Critically ill computer! April 16, 2007

Filed under: Uncategorized — auntlelo @ 7:07 am

Last night, while enjoying a nice little birthday soiree at my parents house, I received a call from my 14 year old son. He said”The computer is acting kind of funny.” I asked what he meant by that and he said “Everything is upside down.” Thus began several hours of pulling of hair and gnashing of teeth as I attempted to diagnose what had happened to my poor computer friend.

Apparently, my son opened a message he received while in MSN Messenger and that’s when everything went haywire. Whatever nasty virus this is, it’s turned my monitor display upside down. It also, apparently, has the ability to turn off or sidestep my antivirus software. I ran it manually and after the occurrence found nearly 500 infections. This is some really bad mojo.

This morning, I am writing from my computer at work as I study up on what I can do to fix the problem. My computer won’t allow me to do a system restore. Bummer!!!! I’ll have to ask all of the smarter people around me today for their advice.

I guess I know what I’ll be doing at home this evening…

 

The Battle Is On!!!! April 14, 2007

Filed under: Uncategorized — auntlelo @ 9:17 pm

In our house, the biggest battle these days (except for the battle of my weight) is the sacred Guitar Hero battle. My 14 year old son and his brother-in-law-to-be are currently battling for the Guitar Hero crown. Strains of “Free Bird” can be heard drifting through the house as these two PlayStation musicians vie for the title. See the concentration in the photos below (taken from their respective cell phone cameras):

allen-hero.jpg josh-hero.jpg

According to “son-in-law-to-be”, the 14 year old has had significantly more practice, but, he has greater stamina, having proven that he can play Guitar Hero for 5 hours straight without stopping.

According the 14 year old, he can master the more complex fingerings and is determined to win the battle.

Stay tuned for more news as the Guitar Hero saga continues.

 

I Hate Cleaning Bathrooms April 13, 2007

Filed under: Uncategorized — auntlelo @ 3:45 pm

I’m sure everyone has a particular chore or two they particularly detest. Mine is definitely cleaning the bathrooms.

I spent most of my life in the kitchen, so, I don’t mind cleaning that so much. Don’t mind the vacuuming or the dusting. I can tolerate the laundry okay. But, cleaning the bathroom is something I always dread. The cleaners are all “unfriendly” to my hands and my sinuses. I always end up congested or with a headache or itchy burning hands. Not to mention it’s a real pain having to get down on your hands and knees to scrub the tubs and showers.

However, all that said, it’s still satisfying to walk into a newly cleaned bathroom and appreciate the nice shiny surfaces and nicer smells. Now, if I could only keep people from using them and messing them up again, life would be good!

What’s your least favorite household chore?

 

All the leaves are brown and the sky is gray… April 12, 2007

Filed under: My View on Weather,Uncategorized — auntlelo @ 7:16 am

That’s the view outside my window today, folks. It’s amazing that it’s April 12th and the weatherman on TV this morning was predicting snow on Saturday. SNOW!!!! Can you believe it?

Normally at this time of year, my backyard looks like this:

my-backyard.jpg

Unfortunately, it no longer looks anything like this. We’re back to the sad, wintery state. All the pretty blooms on the pear and crab apple trees are brown and dropping. My peach trees in the side lawn are in the same condition. I can’t post any photos of my tulips and jonquils because they’re dead where they lay, sad remnants of what was supposed to be spring in Small Town, USA.

So sad. At least I got one photo to prove it was spring here, at least for a few short days!

 

Sore Fingers! April 11, 2007

Filed under: Uncategorized — auntlelo @ 7:51 am

I’ve always been a keyboard musician (except for playing clarinet in band). I’m really struggling with the pain associated with playing a stringed instrument. I have a mountain dulcimer that I’ve been playing and it’s wreaking havoc on the fingers of my left hand. I need to buy a new box of bandaids.

There is something really satisfying about learning to play a new instrument. I think I must be a throwback to my ancestors who came from Ireland and Scotland, by way of Kentucky and Tennessee. I love Irish and bluegrass music, folk and traditional country. Dulcimer, mandolin and banjo are interesting to me and there’s nothing better than the sound of an acoustic guitar played well. While I don’t see myself ever being a gifted string musician, I am enjoying the process. If only I can develop some callouses quickly…

If you want to see what I’m listening to week by week, I’ve added a playlist under My Pages.

Question of the day: What’s your favorite type of music, artist or instrument? 

 

What’s On My Playlist? April 10, 2007

Filed under: Uncategorized — auntlelo @ 6:20 am

This week I’m listening to a wonderful CD from Alison Krauss. A Hundred Miles or More: A Collection is an impressive compilation of songs gathered from different corners of this gifted singers’ career. Although an avid bluegrass fan, I am also a lover of Irish ballads and this CD contains a couple of really fine ones. A particular favorite is a song that features the Chieftains called “Molly Ban.” Another pleasant surprise is not one, but two duets with John Waite.

Definitely a CD worth your time.

 

Baby, Bunnies, Breakfast and Birthday Cake April 9, 2007

Filed under: Uncategorized — auntlelo @ 7:16 am

That title pretty much sums up my weekend. On Saturday, we made the 2.5 hour trip north to meet our new grandchild. It was worth every second of the drive, too! She is beautiful and also poses very nicely for the camera already. Here are a couple of shots of our beautiful Allana:

allana-smiles.jpggrammy-and-allana.jpg

Our gifts to the new baby included a healthy amount of pink and, of course, bunnies to mark her arrival during the Easter season. (Very special people are born at Easter. I, myself, was born on Easter Day. My daughter was born the day after Easter and now Allana has been born just three days before.) Bunnies, bunnies, everywhere!

On the way home, we celebrated my birthday early. We had reservations at The Pear Tree. Ah, bliss! It was amazing, as always. My teenage son described his filet mignon as “the best thing I’ve ever had on a fork.” I guess that pretty much describes it!

It was a long day and Easter morning arrived earlier than most. We had to get up and around in order to be at sunrise services at church by 6:30 a.m. I also had to get up early enough to make a hash brown casserole to take along for the breakfast. So, the day went something like this:

4:30 a.m. Get up and make casserole

6:00 a.m. Leave for church

6:30 a.m. Sing solo at sunrise service

6:30-7:30 Play piano for the rest of the service

7:30 Church breakfast (eat hash brown casserole)

8:30 Sunday School

9:30 Church service (sang another solo and played piano)

11:00 a.m. Get home and start lunch to celebrate Easter and my daughter’s birthday

12:30 Eat lunch, open packages, eat cake, do dishes, etc.

The rest of the day was spent pretty much lounging around and being lazy. I was too tired to get excited about much else. All in all, a pretty eventful weekend!

 

Hello World! April 6, 2007

Filed under: Uncategorized — auntlelo @ 7:36 am

This is Allana Michele’s first day on the planet. We are happy to finally get to meet her. Here is our first glimpse of our new grandchild.

allana-059.jpg

 

Welcome little one! April 5, 2007

Filed under: Uncategorized — auntlelo @ 7:46 pm

The Easter Bunny brought us a new grandbaby just a few days early this year! A sweet and precious baby girl, 8 pounds 4 ounces and 21 inches long. Mommy and baby are doing fine. I don’t know her name yet. I think there are still some high level negotiations going on between Mama and Papa, but, I’ll be happy to post it as soon as it is announced.

I can hardly wait to see her!