It takes a lot of courage to release the familiar and seemingly secure, to embrace the new.
But there is no real security in what is no longer meaningful.
There is more security in the adventurous and exciting, for in movement there is life, and in change there is power.
Alan Cohen
"Outside of a dog, a book is a man's best friend.
Inside of a dog, it's too dark to read."
Groucho Marx
The doors we open and close each day decide the lives we live.

Thursday, July 31, 2014

What An Adventure We Had !

 2010 ... February .. My First Blog Post

Summer in Buenos Aires 

Oh to be back in time, to be back to that place, to be with my husband and the Pup.
What an adventure we had !

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Saving Birds ... One at a time

Minette the kitten goes out into the "solarium" every morning to keep an eye on the chipmunks and birds.
The bird feeders are out back and are very busy most days.
I am out in the country so there are various visitors at all times of the day - deer and snapping turtles and the usual gazillion birds and our family of chipmunks and many rabbits ...
I guess there are snakes and definitely spiders and I have been told there are bears and coyotes/wolves.
 ( I am guessing wild dogs before I believe we have coyotes/wolves)

So ... today, having my first cup of coffee.. I see a bird ( bluejay ? robin?) in the yard when suddenly, shockingly to Minette and to me .. a hawk/falcon swooped down and grabbed up the big bird !
Who flapped around and complained but that hawk just kept going !

I .... distressed by it all ... ran out the back door in my pajamas, yelling at the hawk ..
(Candid Camera would have made millions)

Here is the good part of the story -

The hawk dropped the bird.
Who flew over , then away ...
I like to think the flyover was a Thank You to me.


His name is Jack.
He is an older guy. A Gentle Giant. Sweet, loving and a Good Boy.
He has been handed in to a Kill Shelter by his owners. ( may they rot in hell)

Someone please Adopt Jack before it is too late.

Please pass this along, share it , Save Jack.

click on his name to go to the shelter website.


*** Jack has been saved / adopted !! ***

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

The Problem with getting up early

It is 9:30 am and I have been up for a long time and I am now eating a Macadamia Nut cookie.
The size of a saucer.
Fresh * yesterday* from the local farm stand that specializes in Apple Cider - it is actually an apple farm and fresh baked cookies and pies are specialities also.

So far this morning .....
A baby bird crashed into the living room window.
Mama bird (Robin) was there and they flew away together .. phew !
Baby bird has a headache I betcha.

Minette has stalked and eaten an ant.
I tried to get to it first but who knew tiny kittens moved at the speed of light ?!

I am sitting through caffeine/sugar shakes. Makes typing difficult but I persevere ..

There were Fire sirens this morning. Which is such a sad and anxious sound, isn't it ?

I have to go to PetSmart to get You-know-who some new food and litter and all that fun stuff.
Of course, a new toy will be added to the list.
Which will be fun for about 3 minutes then she will be back to stalking an ant in the sunroom or attacking my feet under the covers or biting my fingers when I scratch her belly or .. well.. you get the picture.

A long day full of sunshine and adventures awaits.

I hope your day is full of the same.
Minette will be sure to alert us to any incoming flying objects ..

See ya later ...

Saturday, July 26, 2014

Looking Back - A Beautiful Walk

This was at the corner of our street , where we lived in Buenos Aires.
I took thousands, no, not exaggerating, thousands of photos over the 7 years that we were there.
I am considering making a book of photos.
Even if it is only for me and the family.

Every time I look at a photo, I can see it all in my minds eye.
I can hear the noise, cars honking, people walking and talking, dogs barking,
the sounds of life in Buenos Aires.
I can remember every step of the walk from our apartment, across the street, around the corner and down this street, to the end , where there is a wide flight of stairs down to the next street, and on to the supermarket.  Just going to buy groceries was a beautiful walk. Whatever the season.

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

We Are Sending Him Birthday Cards .. Every Single One Of Us

His name is Danny Nickerson.
He is battling brain cancer and not winning.
He has a birthday coming.
He will be 6.
We are all sending him Birthday Cards.

Danny Nickerson
PO Box 212
Foxboro Ma. 

Monday, July 21, 2014

Looking Back

Looking Back on the years we lived in Buenos Aires, the one thing that stands out is how Happy we were.
I was cranky the first couple of weeks because ..
1- the water/food did not agree and I was losing weight like crazy and my clothes were getting bigger on me by the day.
2- The red tape and police visits all conducted in Spanish were very stressful for me.
I worry ..
I worry when things are good and in English, imagine how I dealt with it in Castellano.
Thank goodness for my husband who was never stressed and just so happy to be there that he would just smile and do whatever it was we had to do.

I look back on those days and think that having Pup with us was one of the best things that happened.
He was my stress relief.
He was like having a living teddy bear, soft and sweet and loving and happy .. that dog was always happy.

He was our Ambassador of Goodwill.
There are no Standard Poodles in Buenos Aires .. or there were none when we arrived and lived there.
So it was , as my husband said, like walking down the street with a gorilla .. a unicorn .. everyone wanted to touch it, pet it and take a photo of it.

There are tourists today- in Japan, in France, Germany, with photos of my dog.
Some of those photos have me or both my husband and I and the dog in them.
It wasn't possible sometimes to avoid being photographed with the Celebrity Dog.
The Caniche.
I learned that word the first week we were there.
Caniche Grande.

He loved it. He thought Buenos Aires was the best thing since dog biscuits.
Everyone wanted to touch him, pet him, ladies kissed him .. on the lips ...ewww.. and he could run all over the park and not get yelled at and he got to go for walks all the time every day.
What more could a dog ask for ?

He had his favorite cafes, he was allowed to have drinks in the Evita Cafe .. the lady down the street always gave him a biscuit when she saw him .. the porters all loved him and gave him a good scratch on the back .. behind the ear .. the vet kissed him and gave him cookies ..
Buenos Aires was the best thing that ever happened to that dog.

My husband was pretty much like the dog  ...
He was so happy to be there.
He walked around just soaking it in, smiling , charming people even in another language .. he was gifted that way.
He made lists and we did everything on the list and we got everything accomplished.
We , finally after 3 years, got our Permanent Resident IDs and relaxed and enjoyed just being there ..
We made friends with Argentine people , we avoided the ex-pat life .. we didn't want to move somewhere totally different and sit around with people from our old neighborhood and speak English.

Although speaking Castellano was difficult and we were not fluent by any means , we managed to do everything one has to do in daily life .. in another language.

I enjoyed the days when we were house hunting and finally found our apartment. The excitement, the closing ! that was an experience to remember !
Then the shopping .. furniture, lighting, kitchen and bath .. we remodeled the kitchen and bath, but left everything else as it was , with a new paint job.
The apartment had previously been a private home, 2 apartments to a floor.
Front to back .. high high ceilings, the building was done in the French Style .
So we went straight to San Telmo and shopped for Chandeliers.
There were also shops for coffee tables and desks and such..
My desk which I am using now, here in NY , was hand made , an Argentine country style wood desk with a charming look to it and lots of memories in it.
Most of the lights are put away, this house doesn't have the high ceilings needed for the chandeliers we bought, those are wrapped and in boxes, waiting for a new home with high ceilings.
Someday ..

Our sofa .. the biggest and heaviest sofa made this century .. bought in Recoleta, now living in New York .. with the antique coffee table bought on Vicente Lopez in Recoleta where they sell antique rugs and a piece or two of furniture .. lucky for us, the coffee table was there that day.
It is very old and Chinese .. and has so many stories to tell.

We sat in cafes every day .. we tried different foods, we shopped, we loved the fact that we were 3 blocks from a huge Museum of Art .. that we were 3 blocks away from miles of park and walks and beauty.
We were also quite close to a few malls.
What more could a girl ask for ?

The music .. we were always buying music .. my husband was totally in love with anything Argentine, we have so much good Tango music now.
I was totally in love with the low cost of shoes and I have so many pairs now ... what ? I like Tango music too ! but you still need shoes... and handbags .. beautiful soft leather handbags.

We took lessons in Castellano and failed.
Well, to be honest ... I failed. My husband did pretty good. I quit. So he quit. We did fine anyway.

more later .....

Sunday, July 20, 2014

All is Well

Feeding birds,
Watching Chipmunks,
Looking at a gazillion stars at night,
Being sad,
Having a laugh,
Being fed good things by a neighbor,
Meeting new baby Highland Calf ,          
Saying goodby to new friend who moved away,
Playing with Minette
Cuddling with Minette
Watching good BBC TV
Listening to great music
Filling up on fresh farm produce
Seeing sheep and cows and horses on my way to the supermarket
All is well.

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Taking the Weekend Off

The weekend is coming.
It turned into a bit of a stressful week, culminating in calls to police and self recriminations and deep sadness that my husband isn't here.
Everything is fine now, I hope ... but I want to take a little break and get over it.
Minette is my little angel.
She squeaks at me if I grab her up too fast, or startle her.
She will then bite me and then kiss me.
She and I both have issues I guess :)

She sleeps in her new crate and cuddles with me in my bed in the morning.
We both enjoy those morning snuggles .. although I can still do without the little love bites.
Lordy that kitten has sharp teeth ..

I took a drive today, it was so very beautiful , I just had to be outside.. even if I had no place to go.
And no one to go with.
Yesterday I went to Great Barrington .. today I went to Chatham and farm markets.

Buying perfect fruit and veggies just yards away from where they  grew is a treat.
Eating fresh baked scones made at the farm market is a treat too. .
They also have flower greenhouses, I am trying to decide what kind to get. And herbs too.

In the meantime though, I bought what looks like a Japanese pottery .. it is so pretty, it doesn't even need a plant, I just put it in the window on the sill .. a work of art in a beautiful shade of green.

I hope everyone has a perfect Summer weekend.
I will see you next week.

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Best Dressed Schmoozer on NH Road

Not to sound like a Braggart or anything but I am the Best Dressed person on my street .. perhaps in the neighborhood,  but I mostly just see close neighbors and the cows and sheep .. so I will just go with Best Dressed Resident of NH Road ..

Today I decided to get out of the house and regardless of thunder clouds, drive to Great Barrington Ma, and use the ATM  at the bank there. The bank lady and I have long schmoozes when I drop by ..
I needed that today.
I have gone too long between schmoozes.

It was as pleasant as ever and I am proud of myself because I didn't cry once ... she is one of those people who is so sympathetic and comforting, that she sort of makes me cry.
But today I was strong ..

Until I went to the grocery store and decided that I   can eat ice cream AND cinnamon rolls.. maybe even for dinner.
And as luck would have it .. I was walking through the store, looking for something to tempt me and a lady admired my shoes.
I thanked her and told her I got them in Argentina.
Which as you can imagine, started a nice conversation with lots of laughs ..
Are Argentine men really that handsome ?
Did you eat steak every night ?
Do you tango ? We want to go !!

And the answers remain the same ... Yes, No , No , Go .

It was quite cheerful , I drove home singing along to my new CD at the top of my lungs.
Zooming right past the policeman at only 5 or so miles over the Speed Limit...
He must have heard me singing and thought, she is in pain, I won't stop her. Or ...
She must be happy, I won't ruin that.

I saw fabulous horses .. a Palomino ( remember them ?) and his harem .. 4 of them ... all blondes .
Young blondes.

I saw gardens that are dreamy.
Houses that make me wish I could be like the character in a movie who goes to the door and just says, I want to buy your house, here is one million dollars.
I saw sheep.. so many sheep here .. and funniest sight of the day goes to the Goat at the Farm up the hill.
They rake the used straw and make a pile in part of the yard outside the barn.
Eventually they put it somewhere else ..
Today, on top of this very high ( taller than my car) pile of dirty hay, was a white goat .. sleeping.
I was afraid it was dead at first but its ears moved.

I visited with the Garden Club lady after coming home and getting restless ... the day is so long when there is no one sharing it with you.
Minette only wants to sit by the sliding doors and keep an eye on the chipmunks.
She will need therapy soon.
Obsessive Compulsive Chipmunk Watching.
She will have to take Kitten Prozac.

Now the sun is going down and I will close the doors and figure out which is more appealing .. movies, TV shows or a book.
I will let Minette choose.

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Fairies at the bottom of my garden

There are Fairies at the bottom of my Garden.
There used to be a birdhouse on a fence near the trees.
Then it fell onto the ground and the birds deserted it.
Today I found it .. standing up .. there are signs of someone living there.
My guess, chipmunks.
Garden fairies like to be up high ..sometimes.

Minette is busy every afternoon, lying on her pillow in front of the doors , keeping an eye on the comings and goings of the Birds.
She is sort of obsessed with them.
I worry.

She knows the sound of the word Chipmunk.
Chi ..... that is all she has to hear and she is off and running.. straight to the sliding doors, where the chipmunks gather to eat the seeds I spill ( on purpose) as I go to the bird feeders with bags of seed.
The chipmunks no longer run when they see her there ... they know she is kept away from them by an invisible force field.
They sometimes mock her. They laugh.
They wiggle their tiny little chipmunk butts at her.
I think she hates them sometimes.
But mostly she wants to taste them.
She and I fought over a bug that she saw on the garden room floor .. she won .. she ate that bug and gave me a look .. smug.
Did she think if I had caught it, I would have eaten it ??

We are under a Severe Weather Alert.
Much attention is being given to people in cars .. Do Not Drive  Through Water.
I find that difficult when it rains hard, don't you ?
Unless you drive with one of those magic force fields ...

I am just glad there is no river nearby and I am not in a valley.
My house is also not flat on the ground so hopefully, even if there are floods, Minette and I won't have to leave town in a rowboat.

I worry about the fairies at the bottom of the garden though ..

Friday, July 11, 2014


Friday ...
The sun is shining, it is not too warm and everything looks clean and sparkling.
The chipmunks even look freshly washed.
Minette keeps a close eye on them... they can't get away with any funny business on her watch .

My visitors will be here tonight .. my mind is crowded with ideas .. what's for dinner, what's for dinner tomorrow , where are we going to go sightseeing , should I buy someone a present .. a new toy ?
But of course!

I hear there is a Trader Joes in the vicinity .. next week ..

I am in a quandary regarding moving ...  I have no idea where to go so how can I sell this house
and move ?
Something to ponder.

Minette was in her usual spot on a soft rug by the sliding doors in the Sunroom.
I looked out the window in my bedroom and saw a cat, with huge yellow eyes, looking at me .. from OUTSIDE the doors  !!!

I ran to the Sunroom, how could she have gotten out ?????

She was lolling on her rug ... by the doors ... Inside.
She looked at me like I was insane but she allowed me to pick her up and smother her in kisses.

It was another cat ... it looked just like Minette. A Cat Doppelganger ! Good Grief.

Now I have to be sure it doesn't come too close to the doors when she is out there , he might breathe wild cat germs on her or something ... you never know.
Or maybe it will be a Romeo and Juliet thing, she inside, he outside ... never to be together .. sigh .. how womantic..

Have a Happy Weekend !

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Go Argentina

This will probably be my only and last sports related  blog. But I had to do it !

                                        Not even dirty playing could save the Holland team.
                                       Sorry to my Dutch friends . The better team won .

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Sweet Baby Kitty

Can you imagine having a kitten that looked like this ?
Would you ever put it down ?
Would you ever stop petting it and telling it how much you love it ?

I think Minette needs a sister.

Minette got her nails cut today.
The people at the vets always tell me the same thing. She was a good girl and no trouble at all.
This is either something Minette and the vet people have cooked up to shame me. Or she is so afraid they are going to do something that hurts, that she freezes and lets them do anything to her.
Whatever it is .. I am living proof that Minette will never let me cut her nails.
I have more holes and scratches and bite marks on me than  one of her stuffed toys !  

Sunday, July 6, 2014

The Cows and I

I might not have wanted to live here alone , I might not have wanted to even live here at one time, but I must admit, today I realized that it isn't such a bad place after all.

As long as the sun shines, it is comfortable to be outside and to take a walk up the hill to say hello to the Sheep and the Horse and wave at the Highland Cattle who are napping in the shade.
The little sheep are almost as large as their mother but they run behind her and baaaa and she just mopes along. Sheep walk with their heads down .. they look so dejected.

The one horse looks like he needs a girlfriend. I mean he obviously looks like he needs a girlfriend.
He isn't a gelding.

There was a new Highland Calf born. Its mama won't let me see it. I am not going to beg.
In fact, I am not even going to mention it to her. I will just bide my time and that (not really so little) baby will come to me.
They all do, eventually.

so did I mention I am sitting here all dressed up and nowhere to go ?
Yeah, I thought I would wear one of the necklaces I made, so it had to go with something.

Picture it ... crisp white cotton shirt. blue jeans, folded at the ankles with ballet flats. and a necklace made of denim blue colored beach glass beads more like glass balls .. with small blue pearls between them. The cows loved it .

Look out the window ....

Thursday, July 3, 2014


I remember last July 4th .. we spent the day doing what we had been doing since we moved into the house. Putting this up, away, over here and over there .. moving things around, hanging pictures and falling into bed at night like zombies.

We were really expecting to see fireworks with no buildings in the way, clear skies all day ..

Night time came ... he was exhausted, I was exhausted and nothing happened ... no fireworks.

We went to bed early- I lay there thinking, soon they will start shooting off firecrackers ... what was that ? I thought I hear a Pop ! jump up, look out the window .. pitch black dark night.

Back to bed, he was asleep already !!
Five minutes later .... so was I.

I cannot imagine what it will be like tomorrow night .. I will be alone with the kitten.
I sort  of don't care if there are fireworks ..

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sunset in Buenos Aires