Most of the photos here at Rabbit Run Cottage
can be enlarged just by clicking on each one!
There you go...see? Easy!

Tuesday, October 31, 2006

A Weekend Away

We are headed to St. Louis this coming weekend. This will be our home away from home for 3 days.
~Napoleon's Retreat~ Historic Lafayette Square - One Mile from Downtown St. Louis "St. Louis' most beautiful bed & breakfast. Napoleon's Retreat has trumped style and trapped time. If St. Louis itself were a mansion, this would be the salon." St. Louis Magazine
"An elegant mansion in the heart of Victorian St. Louis." Chicago Herald
This award winning inn embodies the style and elegance of late nineteenth century St. Louis. Located in one of the most beautiful city neighborhoods in the nation, just one mile from downtown, this 1880 French Second Empire offers stunning accommodations in a relaxing, private and comfortable setting. Experience the finest St. Louis has to offer.

We will let you know all about the Bed & Breakfast, the play...the whole shebang...when we return!

Sunday, October 29, 2006

Goodbye Red

I am remembering a great man today...
I once spoke with Red by telephone. The story is a long one and I won't bore you with the details save for one thing. He was a gentleman. A brilliant sportsman, a legend. I adored Red Auerbach. Thanks for the memories Red.
The Yankees won 25 championships. What did it take them, a hundred years? Red won nine in 10. He was the best coach in the history of professional sports. Period."-- Bill Russell
"He's the greatest manager of men, in all walks of life."-- John Thompson
"He had a touch with people and could get them committed to what he was doing. He made the Celtics into basketball's Cosa Nostra. We believed it was our thing."-- Tommy Heinsohn
"He always let me know that more than anybody else, he knew what I was doing. I really loved working with him. It was almost like we were soul mates."-- Bill Russell
"He's the Godfather of the Celtics."-- John Havlicek
"Arnold knew how to judge talent, he knew how to acquire it, and he knew how to motivate it."-- Bob Cousy
"This is not the passing of a man, it's the passing of an institution."-- M.L. Carr
"I have a lot of fun and fond memories of Red from early in my career. I don't think there's a legend who was as beloved as Red is in Boston."-- Danny Ainge
"Red was a true champion and one whose legacy transcends the Celtics and basketball. He was the gold standard in coaching and civil leadership, and he set an example that continues today."-- Sen. Ted Kennedy
"Boston lost one of its greatest citizens. He cut me from the Celtics, but I've never admired a person more." -- Ray Flynn
BOSTON (Reuters) - Boston remembered legendary basketball coach Arnold "Red" Auerbach on Sunday for his competitive fire and for helping black players and coaches break the sport's color barrier. Auerbach, who died at 89 on Saturday near his home in Washington, coached the Boston Celtics' basketball team during a period in the 1950s and 1960s when it racked up a record eight-straight National Basketball Association championships. At a time when his team dominated the league, Auerbach would often fire up a cigar to celebrate a victory even while a few minutes of play remained. "Red's victory cigar was the original in-your-face taunt," wrote Boston Globe columnist Dan Shaughnessy in the paper's Sunday edition. "Celtic rivals despised the gesture and even Red's players dreaded the ceremonial stogie. It just made the other team mad." Bob Cousy, who played for the Celtics under Auerbach in the 1950s and 1960s, said of his former coach: "He was relentless and produced the greatest basketball dynasty so far that this country has ever seen and certainly that the NBA has ever seen." Boston Mayor Thomas Menino said: "Boston lost a legend yesterday with the passing of Red Auerbach. Red was a tremendous leader both on and off the court." While Auerbach was white, several people said he contributed greatly toward breaking the color barrier in a sport that had been a whites-only affair in the United States through the first half of the 20th century. "He was an agent of change, hiring the first African-American coach in all of pro sports, and drafting the league's first African-American player," Massachusetts Democratic Sen. John Kerry' said in a statement. In 1950, Auerbach drafted Chuck Cooper, one of the first black players in the NBA, and in 1966 hired Bill Russell as the NBA's first black coach. "He could look beyond the color of the skin, which was something at that time," said Tom Naughton, 50, of Long Beach, New York. Naughton was one of a handful of tourists and locals who stopped by a bronze statue of Auerbach that stands outside Boston's Faneuil Hall, which mourners had decorated with flowers. Visitors said that Auerbach's reputation had extended far beyond the Bay State. "You couldn't miss him. Even in Texas, it seemed the Celtics games were on every weekend," said Kent Roach, 54, of San Antonio, Texas. "They were the original dynasty."
DAN SHAUGHNESSY For decades, he lit up our lives By Dan Shaughnessy, Globe Columnist October 29, 2006 We were so lucky. We had Red Auerbach for nearly 57 NBA seasons. We had his genius, his rough, old-school charm, and his Brooklyn-learned street smarts. And we lost him yesterday. At the age of 89. Just four days before the start of another Celtics season. Red was the Celtics. Sure, we had Bill Russell, Bob Cousy, John Havlicek, Larry Bird, and the rest. But Red was the Celtics. He delivered 16 championships to our town. We never could pay back all the pride and glory he brought to Boston. We tried. We dedicated a statue to Red a full 21 years before he died. We wrote books about him. We created a scholarship in his honor. We made documentaries about him and held a $500 per plate "Red-fest" at the Bayside Exposition Center. "Most guys have to die to get a tribute like that," Red said, with a chuckle. We were hoping he never would die. As long as Red lived, there was still Celtic tradition, Celtic pride. We were looking forward to seeing him for one more opening night Wednesday at the Garden. It would have been his 57th opener with the Celts. It would have been his 61st opening night with the NBA, a magnificent career that spanned the entire history of the league. But he just missed. In the end, he never lived to see the first Celtic cheerleader. Probably the way he wanted it.

Happy Halloween!

Have a safe and spooky Halloween. I hope there will be loads of treats and very few tricks in store for you!

A Weekend in St. Louis

Bill is taking the 4 of us back to St. Louis as a treat for my 50th birthday.
We have tickets to see Broadway's smash, "Spamalot" at the fantastic Fox Theater. We will be dining in our favorite restaurants & visiting with special friends.
We lived in the area for 3 1/2 years and enjoyed it all immensely. We will be visiting some of our favorite spots....
The Gateway Arch The Arch has been a popular tourist attraction since its completion in October 1965. Designed to last 1,000 years, it reaches 630 feet in height; on a clear day, you can see for about 30 miles from atop the structure. Anheusar-Busch Brewery What do horses, dogs and beer have in common? Find out while touring the grounds, brewery and stables and while sampling the beer in the hospitality room here. Since its creation in 1855, the brewery has developed into a major landmark and is home to the famous Budweiser Clydesdales. Daily tours leave about every 15 minutes Laclede's Landing The district is named after Pierre Laclede, the man who founded St. Louis. Amuse yourself by walking on the cobblestone streets or, if you are feeling bold, take a horse-drawn carriage ride and enjoy the view of the riverboat casinos on the Mississippi. There are several restaurants to choose from, and when the weather permits, you can dine outside and listen to the street musicians. Union Station Once a bustling hub of railway activity, this station has been renovated to restore its stunning architecture, and it is now a busy attraction for tourists and locals. People flock here to eat at the more than 20 different restaurants, shop in the marketplace and enjoy free entertainment events. There is a lake, complete with fish and turtles, where you can ride a paddleboat. Kids of all ages will be delighted with the carousel and Ferris wheel. A 10-screen movie theater is also on site, and the station plays host to many events and festivals throughout the year. Forest Park Born in the Civil War era (1879) and witness to the 1904 World's Fair, this park attracts history lovers from around the world. Memories abound in this urban park, which hosts reunions and many other events year round. Not much is sweeter than walking barefoot in the grass on the beautiful grounds, picnicking by the stream or seeing the 40-foot turtle. Within minutes of arriving, the surroundings take the mind back in time to the origin of the park, while the historic attractions captivate all who come. St. Louis Zoo The third largest zoo in the country, with 90 acres of space and 700 species of animals on exhibit, this place is a must-see on a family vacation to St. Louis. The zoo is open year round with free general admission. Some areas, however, do require a small fee, including the sea lion shows, the new insectarium and the children's zoo, where kids can pet the animals. Other areas include the big cat country, the jungle of the apes, the primate house, the river's edge (an elephant exhibit) and feeding areas for bears and sea lions. The St. Louis Art Museum This wonderful spot has the largest collection of artwork on display in the city, with three floors featuring a variety of styles of artwork from all over the world. The first floor has artwork from all of the continents. The second has more traditional artwork such as paintings, Christian art, sculptures and special exhibits. The third floor has abstract and contemporary art. There are only a few works by the more famous artists, but the collection is so vast that art lovers are bound to see something they will like. The Old Courthouse The exhibits at the Old Courthouse, most of which are actual models or historic items rather than mere text or photographs, date back to 1764, at which time the St. Louis region was a French fur trading port. Other exhibits come from eras ranging from colonial times on up to the 20th century. The Old Courthouse served as an actual courthouse from the mid-19th century up until 1930. The Courthouse is famous for hosting the legendary Dred Scott Trial.
Grant's Farm
In the 1850s, Ulysses S. Grant began farming this land, which is now a tourist attraction and a home to many exotic and endangered animals. This farm offers visitors many activities, from touring the land and seeing the animals to attending the shows and dining or browsing for souvenirs in the gift shop. Anheuser-Busch owns the farm, which is home to the Clydesdale stables, a herd of deer and other animals. Grant's Station and Grant's Cabin are two of the major attractions on the tour.
Missouri Botanical Garden A garden lover's paradise, this 79-acre collection of gardens has something for everyone, including a fragrance garden for the visually impaired. The Kemper Center has more than 20 gardens set to various themes, including the Japanese Garden and Chinese Garden, which offer a tranquil getaway from the urban hustle and bustle. A tropical rain forest also grows in this Midwestern city in an indoor garden spot, the Climatron, a glass geodesic dome through which you can stroll even when there is snow outside.
The Fox Theater "No longer need residents of St. Louis look beyond their own city for the finest entertainment." This statement was coined by the William Fox Circuit of Theatres in 1929 for the opening of their newest, most exotic temple of amusement, and it still holds true! The Fabulous Fox offers a dazzling array of talent and entertainment twelve months a year.

Autumn in Ohio

I love being back in Ohio, especially at this
time of year. It has been a glorious Fall.

Did You Change Your Clocks?

Did you remember to set your
clocks ahead an hour? What a treat that extra 60 minutes can be!

Saturday, October 28, 2006

Pumpkins By the Score

Traditional Pumpkin Bread 3 c. sugar 1 c. oil
3 eggs 2 c. canned pumpkin 1 c. walnuts (optional)
3 c. flour
1/2 tsp. salt 1/2 tsp. baking powder 1 tsp. soda1 tsp. cloves 1 tsp. cinnamon 1 tsp. nutmeg Blend oil, sugar and eggs.
Stir in pumpkin. Add shifted dry ingredients. Stir in walnuts (optional).
Put in greased pan. Bake at 350 degrees for 1 hour and 15 minutes. Allow to cool.
Pumpkin Butter 1 can (15 oz.) pure pumpkin 1 medium apple, peeled and grated 1 cup apple juice
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
3/4 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice Combine pumpkin, apple, apple juice, sugar and
pumpkin pie spice in medium, heavy-duty saucepan. Bring to a boil; reduce heat to low.
Cook, stirring occasionally, for 1 1/2 hours.
Serve with buttermilk biscuits, breads, corn muffins or hot cereal. Store in airtight
container in refrigerator for up to 2 months.

Letterman Top 10 Part 3

Top Ten Pet Peeves Of U.S. Military Personnel
10. Having to see more naked sweaty guys before 9AM than most people see all day 9. When you ask the cook what's in the meat loaf, and he says, 'Don't ask, don't tell' 8. Camouflage fatigues make your butt look huge 7. Dorky network news anchors in combat fatigues 6. Those M.R.E.'s still suck 5. Two words: 'Helmet Rash' 4. Instead of sending all of us over here, they should have just sent O.J. 3. The crummy TV in the barracks only picks up CBS 2. You hardly ever find a real fox in your foxhole, if you know what I mean 1. The army still hasn't perfected the camouflage hairpiece

Woody Allenism

It's not that I'm afraid to die, I just don't want to be there when it happens.
-Woody Allen


"If I have any beliefs about immortality, it is that certain dogs I have known will go to heaven, and very, very few persons."
-- James Thurber
Our Kip. What can I say. The dog has more joie de vivre than anyone or thing I have ever seen. It was the Summer of 2001 and we had just lost our 15 year old cat, Hannah. I was at my mother's in TN and just did not wish to face going home to a "pet less" house. I was, to say the least, broken hearted. My mom, son and I visited her local shelter with hope of finding a new cat. But there was Kip. He was a small ball of matted fur, scared to death, with the saddest eyes I had ever seen. So he joined our family. 5 years later, we all dance to his tune! He is a mixture of either Border Collie and/or Australian Shepherd and who knows what.
He is the happiest boy imaginable. Loving but protective, he adores his family. Now, if we could just do something about the objectionable behavior he displays to, 1. Mail Carriers 2. Bicyclists 3. Large dogs and 4. Squirrels. But, hey. No one is perfect right?


Thousands of years ago, cats were worshipped as gods. Cats have never forgotten this."
- Anonymous
Lucy was a foundling, brought in from the cold by a caring young man. He lived in an apartment that did not allow pets AND he was allergic to cats. He wanted to find a home for her, asked his aunt and uncle to help and a call was made. "Sue? Do you know of anyone who would love to have a 6 month old kitten?" Sight unseen, we said, "Us!".
So Lucy came into our lives. She gave us the once over, ran a fingerprint check and decided to accept us as her people.
We brought her home on Valentine's Day 2002, just hours before a snow storm hit. And no. I do not think there is any correlation!
Our dog, Kipper, was so excited! He had always wanted a cat! He just loves 'em. She, being a most patient feline, decided to forgive his exuberance and canine behavior. They became the best of friends.
Lucy has a sweet disposition, a loving and gentle nature and loves our son with a tremendous devotion!


A favorite place to dine....
A favorite place to shop...
A favorite spot to visit...
A favorite spot to sit and watch the world pass by....
I love London...what a special city. I can not wait to return for yet another visit.
By seeing London, I have seen as much of life as the world can show.
- Samuel Johnson
London is one of the world’s most remarkable and exciting cities. It has something to offer every type of traveller. This vibrant metropolis embraces the diverse cultures of its population, reflected through cuisine, shops, music and colorful festivals.
The city is famous for a wealth of history and culture. Home to Britain’s national art collections, the Royal family and a host of major attractions, London’s rich history, striking architecture and over 200 museums offer a unique cultural experience. More than 30% of London is made up of parks and green space, greater than any other city of its size in the world. This space provides the perfect opportunity for walks, relaxation or sporting activities.
London also offers some of the best shopping opportunities in the world. From major department stores to designer boutiques and street markets - the choice is immense.
As if that wasn’t enough, London is hard to beat when it comes to nightlife. There are huge numbers of restaurants, pubs, cinemas, theatres and nightclubs plus live music and comedy venues.
So, at any time of day, whatever the weather, you’ll always find something extra special in London.


"Wouldn't it be great if you could ask a woman what she's thinking?" "What a world that would be if you could just ask a woman what she's thinking." "You know, instead I'm like a detective. I gotta pick up clues. The whole thing's a murder investigation." - Jerry and George, in "Good News, Bad News"

Adults Say the Darndest (Most Ignorant) Things

Our son and daughter on her first American Christmas holiday
Oh the questions that were hurled our way after each of our adoptions. It is hard to imagine how ridiculous some queries can be. The following are some of the actual questions followed by the answers that either I gave or
*wish* I had been brave enough to give.
~After our sons arrival~
Did he ever eat a dog? (I don't know but he did take a bite out of our cat. Said she tasted stringy.)
Koreans are very intelligent. I bet he is one of those. (Ooh. I hope so! I would hate to have gotten one of those dumb ones! They are such a bother!)
Did they run out of babies?(Yeah, damn it. They gave us a used kid but the warranty really is great.)
If he gets sick or anything, will the agency pay all the costs?(Sure! They also put braces on his teeth, send him through Harvard Medical School and buy his first car.)
It is a good thing he is so cute or it would have been hard to love him. (Yeah, I hate those ugly ones too. They give me the creeps. *shudder*)
How much did he cost? (Oh! There was a sale at K Mart! Only $19.95!)
If he doesn't make you happy, can you ask for another child? (Oh sure! We bought replacement insurance!)
What's it like being with a Korean? (Well, he whips up a great kimchi dish and gosh those Koreans can sure be funny! Keeps us in stitches all the time!)
~Since our daughter arrival~
Did they charge you the same amount of money because she has scars? (Oh no. They were having a scratch and dent sale!)
Those Chinese are so smart. They can also be tricky and sneaky you know!(Uh...well...she did beat me at poker. Took me for $5.27 the other night.)
Do you know if she is a Communist? (Well, we DID find her Communist Party membership card in her wallet but she swears, she will only practice Communism on every other Friday.)
How did you know you would like her? Can you return her? (Oh yes. The return department is open 24/7. We can ask for our money back or an agency credit)
Why did you get one? (We were just so bored and thought this was what we need to add a spark to our 28 year marriage! That and the pet shop was all outta puppies.)
Did they give you an older girl because you are getting up there in age? (Eh? Speak up a little louder sonny.)
When you got to China, could you have chosen a different kid if yours wasn't pretty? (I had planned to do just that. Seeing our daughter crowned Miss Ohio is exactly why we did all this!)
Since she was so shy, you should have asked for another. (We did but that stubborn facilitator made us take THIS one. Phooey. )
I could never raise another person's kid. I guess it is nice that somebody does it. (Yeah, we are just *so* nice....saints actually.)
Does she know how to eat real food? (Nope, she is still eating that plastic Fisher Price stuff and it is costing us a fortune!)

One Year Ago....

Written to Celebrate The One Year Anniversary of Our Daughter's Adoption

~ 2005 ~ As the family was sitting at the dinner table tonight, the Mom could not help but stare at the little 7 year old girl. Her hair was pulled back in a messy pony tail, a heart sticker on one cheek, a Winnie the Pooh one on the other. On each fingernail the little girl wore a most stunning shade of orange. She was dressed all in pink with the Disney Princesses emblazoned across her chest. She was chatting non stop about school, swim class, her Christmas list (Yes, ALREADY!), the "gojus" Belle costume she will wear Halloween evening and what she wants in her lunch box tomorrow. Yes? Strawberries are a must! Gobbling down piece after piece of pizza (Tonight is her school's Papa John fund raiser nights. "Teacher says we gots to eat pizza tonight!"), she is trying to decide which flavor of ice cream she will have for dessert! Of course! Strawberry! "Mommy? I will help you clean up but first I needs to pick my clothes to wear to school for tomorrow. Hot or cold Mommy? Warm? Okay, but can I wear my new Hello Kitty shirt Grandma sent me? And the hair band too?" She heads up the stairs, stops, and gives her Mom a serious look. "Let me tell me you something Mommy. Hello Kitty is one of my "favortiz" but so is Strawberry Shortcake but I really love Cinderella. She is my bestest thing. Okay? Now you will remember 'cause I tell me you."Uh huh. Mom will remember...She bounds out of the kitchen and up the stairs. Mommy can hear her singing "Shoo fly, don't bother me..." as she none too quietly runs up the stairs. On the way back to the kitchen, she decides it is a good idea to slide down on her tushie. As she hits the floor of the foyer, she squeals in laughter. She loads the dishwasher and encourages Mommy to join her in a rousing rendition of "There was a farmer had a dog and Bingo was his nameo..." which she declares is "my Kippy's" (the family dog, Kipper) favorite song. She stops to laugh hysterically at something she hears on an "Everybody Loves Raymond" re run, asks her big brother why he has to go to his college classes at night. "Don't they let you go when it is sunny?" She then slaps him on his tush as he tickles her. She tickles him under the arms and puts ice down his back. As he tries to make his escape, she chases him out to his car shouting with all her might, "Byee Byee Byeee Phooey Face". Daddy comes in with Kipper and she runs and leaps into his arms. "Okay Daddy. Now we need to read a book cause I gots to take my bath okay?. Wait! I needs to show me you something!" She dashes upstairs again and re- appears with a picture she has drawn for Dad. It shows him as a rabbit with a tree in his ear. "It is just sooooooooooo silly huh?" She giggles so hard she falls off the couch. The parents don't quite get the joke but the sound of her laughter makes them giggle right along with her. She produces the book that Daddy must read, a story about Strawberry Shortcake that she has heard so many times she knows it by heart. One more reading can't hurt. "Oh! Can we go to the park and swing for just a little bit? Pleeeeeeeeease? Just for a minute?" Her backyard lines up with a park that has only just recently added a new swing/slide center. She and her all too obliging Daddy "race" out to the swings and Mommy can hear her laughing from just beyond the trees. The neighbors are outside with their new puppy as the little girl gallops across the yard toward home. She dives into the grass next to the puppy and shrieks with laughter as the 3 1/2 pound marshmallow jumps on her tummy and then plants several puppy kisses squarely on her mouth. The 2 of them roll around on the grass, much to the delight of her parents and several neighbors who are all now watching this noisy love fest. Bath time comes and after hopping into the tub, she pops out, runs down the hall (*mostly* wearing a towel around her), dripping water, to gather up a few bath toys she has forgotten. A Cinderella Soaky that once belonged to her Mom oh so many years ago and a Nemo doll that swims but only backwards. She is singing her show stopping rendition of The Wiggles "Toot Toot Chugga Chugga Big Red Car" and play acting a scene or 2 from Cinderella while she luxuriates in her lavender bubbles. She dries her hair and lathers on the lotion she proclaims is "Just the yummiest!". She brushes her teeth using the Cinderella toothpaste, a Hello Kitty cup and the Barbie toothbrush. She actually hits the sink ever time she spits tonight and this seems to tickle her funny bone a great deal! She runs and leaps into bed with an Olympian medal winning flourish, cuddles up with her "Singing dog", winds his key and has to have Mommy sing along for a bit or sleep is somehow impossible! "Jesus loves the little children, all the little children...". The pillows are re-arranged and pounded a few times in her pink bed under her "Veeeeeery special Princess Butterfly" canopy. "Now I feel cozy...ahhhh." The nightlight is lit and she finally lies down with a sigh. "How many days till we go see "Dizzy World?" "Are you sure Cinderella lives there?", she asks for the 1000th time. She says a little prayer, lets Mommy and Daddy kiss her on the head, asks where Lucy the cat has gone and finally settles in for the night. As her parents closed the door, she called out, "See ya latah sweet patatahs...." The mommy and daddy could not help but think back to a small terrified child they once knew, a child with closely cropped hair, a sad expression and tears always at the ready. A little girl who knew no English, knew no Caucasians, and trusted little. A 6 year old girl who pulled away from any and all personal contact....just a year ago today.

Thursday, October 26, 2006

Feel Better Soon!

A dear and special friend here in Ohio had surgery yesterday so I am sending a GET WELL soon out to her!!
I am also sending a FEEL BETTER soon to a wonderful friend in LA.
Both are amazing women...

The Celebrations Continue

People asked what I wanted to do a way to celebrate. I told 'em. SLEEP IN! So, I did. It was just the perfect day to do so. Rainy, chilly and dark. The dog and cat loved it! So did I. Later in the day, I heard from many friends via the telephone and by email. Dear, loyal and can not do without friends. Thank you for remembering! I received cards from family and friends scattered all over the world. I love cards. I am sucker for 'em. I have stock in Hallmark. The CEO answers to me. Well.... We had a family dinner at Mom's new condo this evening. Doubleday's was my choice of cuisine. We originally planned on a Marion's pizza but switched when I got an unstoppable hankerin' for one of the so called "Monster Pizzas". Delish. There was also an ice cream cake in the shape of a jack o lantern. Very cute and oh so tasty. My brother, sis in law and nephew joined my daughter, son, Mom and me. I love having all of us together for any occasion. But isn't it nice for the occasion to be all about me?? Ahem....but I digress. Good food, presents and chatter. But oh how I miss having Bill here on a night like this. The telephone just does not suffice...but he will be home in 3 days!

I am 50!!

I am 50. Not possible. Wasn't I just 26 the other day? Okay, maybe not. Time seemed to stand still years ago but now, it is stuck on warp speed. I have so much I want to do in whatever time remains for me. 50. It loomed large for so long and now it is here. I don't FEEL any differently today. I look the same as I did yesterday when I was *just* a young 49.
50. If 50 is the new 30, does this mean
I have to go through pre-menopause again?
How did I feel at 30? I ached less, I KNOW I weighed less.
I also KNEW less. Worried MORE.
And...we did not have our children....I would not trade being 50 for 30 if it meant losing what I have now.


My brother picked it out and
added one candle for each decade.
This seems to be the "Week of Sue" around here. (As well it should) I wrote about last weekend's celebrations in a previous "Musings" but the fun has continued..... On Tuesday, 2 of my best friends took me to lunch. Mom went along too. Well, if not for her, I would not have a thing to celebrate right? We ate Mexican (My choice). Not sure if someone MY age should partake of spicy foods laden with beans but I threw all caution to the wind. Did I just say "wind" and beans in the same sentence? I love being with these 2 wonderful women. They never fail to make me laugh and always make me feel so comfortable. I have known them both since early childhood and yet they STILL seem to like me. Hard to believe no? I sure love them....need 'em in my life. There were, of course, the black balloons, age jokes (Here is where I should mention that I was the LAST to ripen on the vine, so to speak) and sweet reminisces. Thank you for a special memory. And hey! Turning 50 ain't so bad...I keep gettin' FREE food! The "Week of Sue" continued yesterday. 3 dear friends and I drove to Lebanon, Ohio and dined at The Golden Lamb", Ohio's Oldest Inn. It was one of those perfect Fall days, deep blue sky, crisp, cool breezes swirling golden leaves at our feet as we walked. Okay, I get all sappy hearing the crunching sound said leaves make under my heels. I LOVE Fall.....yeah, yeah. I KNOW it is really all about stuff wilting and drying out but ya know? At 50, I can really relate to this season! Lunch was good, as always and later, 2 of those buddies met Grace and me at our new "Cheesecake Factory" for a little slice o' Heaven. Heck, you only turn 50 once! (I will hafta think of another excuse for dining on cheesecake later) I am blessed to have these women as friends and sure do love 'em.

We Were ALL Younger

My good lookin' men, on the
flight line, Norfolk, VA 1990
I was 34 when I snapped this picture!

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Trick or Treat For 50 Year Old Hooligans

Top 10 Signs You're Too Old to trick or treat 10. You get winded from knocking on the door 9. You have to have another kid chew the candy for you 8. You ask for high fiber candy only 7. When someone drops a candy bar in your bag, you lose your balance and fall over. 6. People say, "Great Boris Karloff Mask." and you're not even wearing a mask. 5. When the door opens you yell, "Trick or....." and can't remember the rest. 4. By the end of the night, you have a bag full of restraining orders. 3. You have to carefully choose a costume that won't dislodge your hairpiece. 2. You're the only Power Ranger in the neighborhood with a walker. 1. You keep having to go home to go to the bathroom. T.P. Crawford Att.

My Wife

The person who is truly the best part of me, and who has made me a better person for over 30 years is turning 50 tomorrow, and is likely dreading it a bit. Oh, she can give you a litany of reasons about age creeping up on her, about not being young any more. But, when I look at this woman, whether I articulate it or not, she still makes my heart go flutter (and not just due to my heart "irregularity"). She has stood by me through good times and bad; put up with my behaving poorly; dealt with the chaos, loneliness and fear of being a military wife; shared with me the joys of adopting two wonderful children and raising them; tackled the life of a "single" parent with my having to work away from home, not once but TWICE! And, through it all, she has maintained a gentle spirit spiced up with a wicked sense of humor. She is a wonderfully caring mother, a truly devoted friend to all who know her, and a loving wife. She is also my best friend! A happy birthday to you, and my undying thanks for always believing in us all, and always being there for me. I Love You!! Love, Bill

Tuesday, October 24, 2006


Today our dog is more like...... He likes THIS instead....

We think our dog should trick or treat as this....

Thank You Nora Ephron

In my sex fantasy, nobody ever loves me for my mind.
-Nora Ephron

Monday, October 23, 2006

Quote of the Day

"I've seen a look in dogs' eyes, a quickly vanishing look of amazed contempt, and I am convinced that basically dogs think humans are nuts."
- John Steinbeck

Sunday, October 22, 2006

Rabbit Run Cottage

Our little spot in the world.....home. Rabbit Run Cottage.
Small but I like small....perfect? Not yet.
It WILL be. Now hand me that sledgehammer...

Flags of our Fathers

I have just returned from seeing "Flags of our Fathers," and my mind is still racing. I expected a solid film, but was truly amazed at the work shown to me on the screen. The battle scenes were horrific, as would be expected and, frankly, as they should be to truly capture the madness and horror that is war. But the telling of the tale of how these three "heroes" (a term none of them would be comfortable with) were torn from the front and placed in an environment that at least two of them (Bradley and Hayes) were not equipped for is an incredible tale, and a study in how we use battle fame to further other aims, no matter how well intentioned it might be. I have to fully admit that I was in awe of the performances, especially those of Ryan Phillipe and Adam Beach. I had written Ryan Phillipe off as a "light weight" performer a number of years ago, but his performance is incredible, topped only by the totally heart wrenching work of Adam Beach as Ira Hayes. You won't forget it if you see it. In short, an unforgettable film. Clint Eastwood continues to output masterpieces of storytelling of the human condition. But, that's just my opinion.....

Tearing Down The House (of Learning)

They tore it down. Reduced to a pile of rubble in a matter of days. My elementary school. Our elementary school. The place where so many of us spent much of our childhood.
I can still hear the peals of playground laughter, smell the gym's basement showers or the peanut butter cookies baking in Mrs. King's Home Ec room. I still shudder when I think about Mr. Lanasa's recording of "Go You Chicken Fat Go". I remember well the chill that ran down my spine when I saw school principal, Mr. Dobbins, walking down the hall with his ever present paddle. I can see our school custodian, Harry Wederburn, smile each time we passed in the hall.
It was here that we watched the first space shots and lost a portion of our innocence upon hearing that President Kennedy was dead.
I remember the children that were a part of my youth....the teachers....the building. Thanks for the memories.

The Books On My Nightstand

The Guy I Like

Someone asked "Where is your husband? (Good question! Now, let's see. Where did I put him?)
I had not mentioned him in my recent Musings...Not an oversight...really. He is too big to oversee.
He is presently working in Norfolk, VA. Comes home every 3 weeks. Or, if he is naughty, every 2. Seriously, we HATE this situation and hope it will be rectified soon. He retired from the military last year and has yet to find very much in the Dayton area, job wise, available
for someone with his skill sets. (He can cypher purty well, pours a mean glass of Coke, smells good, knows all the President's AND Vice President's names, IN ORDER and
can change a litter box with amazing speed.) Things seem to be opening up just a bit so we remain hopeful he will be home to stay very soon.
He does have a super job in Norfolk, one which challenges and interests him and pays for my ebay addiction. He also works with many old squadron mates as well which is a great perk. Bad influences all...
He is still fielding (And I have seen the mitt to prove it..) many job offers from various companies in DC, Maryland, St. Louis and VA. Now we just have to find a company (or Government office) here which has the right opening and we'll get the boy back where he belongs. Under MY bad influence. Fingers, eyes and toes crossed....


Wow. What a difference a day makes. Yesterday was bright and clear, today is dark, dreary, windy and drizzling. Don't mind the rain and clouds...guess I have too much of that damned English blood. Yeah, yeah. I love the rain. The clouds. Umbrellas. Puddles.
We had a great day on Saturday. Grace and I took Mom to lunch for Sweetest Day. J Alexanders has wonderful soups and salad. My daughter is addicted to their Rattlesnake Pasta. She declared it to be "ever so yummy". Of course, this was after my mom, the server and I spent 15 minutes convincing her that there was NO real rattlesnake meat contained in said dish.
In the evening, the 3 of us headed to a dear friend's home for dinner. What a surprise to find 3 more of my treasured girlfriends and their husbands as well. One is the twin sis of our hostess (both of whom I have known since first grade), one is an old friend (whom we met in High School) who just recently moved back to Ohio after many years away. Their husbands are both great guys and I always love spending time with them.
The 3rd is a very special friend who moved to TN a few years ago. I really miss her and her fantastic husband (We met them in college) and it is always wonderful to see them.
It is so nice to be with people who have known me for such a long time and STILL like me in spite of my faults. Not that I really HAVE any...except this one thing. But I digress...
A delicious meal...turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes, green beans. The cutest pumpkin shaped /pumpkin spice cake with 3 kinds of Graeters Ice Cream. Graeters will be added to my list of "Things I Love About Ohio! Totally decadent. I say, "To Hell with high cholesterol! Full speed ahead!"
All the things I love about a get, talk, laughter and just the right amount of unmitigated sarcasm and age related taunting.
An extremely pleasurable evening!
Hey...This turning 50 may not be so bad after all! I considered the alternative and turning 50 didn't sound too bad.

Why I Love Dayton, Ohio Part One

Dayton, Ohio is known as the birthplace of aviation.
In their Dayton, Ohio, bicycle shop Wilbur and Orville Wright, self-trained in the science and art of aviation, researched and built the world's first power-driven, heavier-than-air machine capable of free, controlled, and sustained flight. The Wrights perfected their invention during 1904 and 1905 in their hometown of Dayton before launching it at Kitty Hawk, North Carolina.
Webster St. Market
Lovely little indoor shops.
A great place to find something special: flowers, food, antiques, trinkets, or vintage clothes.
Fifth Third Field/Dayton Dragons Baseball
Beautiful stadium and field. Plenty of suites, seats, and even the grass seats are a lot of fun. A must do family event. Entertainment between plays is outstanding - and on a good night the baseball plays are equally good!
Marion's Pizza
No pizza in any city tops this one!
Native son, Paul Laurence Dunbar
This gifted and prolific writer produced a body of work that included novels, plays, short stories, lyrics, and over 400 published poems. His writings, which reflected much of the African American experience in America, contributed to a growing social consciousness and cultural identity for African Americans in the United States.
The Dayton Art Institure
The galleries are housed in an Italian Renaissance building and are extensive. There is a collection of African, American, Asian, and European art as well as photography, sculpture, furniture, and decorative art.
The United States Air Force Museum
The museum features some 300 aircraft and missiles over an area of more than 17 acres of indoor exhibit space. The displays reflect the history of aviation from the days of the Wright Brothers to the present age. An IMAX Theater presents space exploration and aviation films.
The Dayton Air Show
Nearly 100,000 people turn out every summer to view the aerial displays of military and civilian aircraft. The Air Force Thunderbirds, The Navy Blue Angels, the elite U.S. Army Golden Knight Parachute Team, and award winning acrobatic pilots are among the star attractions. The show provides displays of aircraft for spectator viewing, from the beginning of flight to modern jet aircraft.
Octoberfest at the Dayton Art Institute Live music, traditional German food, and a wide variety of beers are featured. Local artisans display pottery, jewelry, leather goods, and crafts.
The Benjamin and Marian Schuster Performing Arts Center
Another jewel in the crown of our nation’s Performing Arts Centers. The Schuster Center educates and enriches lives by providing a world-class facility for the best in local, national and international performing artists. Dayton Opera and the Dayton Philharmonic Orchestra call the Schuster Center home, and it also showcases the latest Broadway blockbusters. Additionally, a variety of local performing arts treasures, such as the Dayton Ballet, also make use of the facilities.
Oregon District
One of the most spirited, vitally alive communities you’ll find in the area. You’ll see superb examples of art and architecture past and present. The district teems with historical buildings, antique shops, café’s, parades, a comedy club, Ohio’s largest Halloween party, picnics in the park, street vendors, musicians, and a unique Rock Climbing Gym
Some of Dayton’s most acclaimed restaurants are here. You’ll enjoy the finest seafood at Jay’s...with dishes like soft shell crab, shrimp and pasta...all fresh fish flown in daily. The atmosphere is charming and includes the most elegant bar in the whole region. At Pacchia’s just around the corner you’ll find exotic pizzas wonderfully inventive and tasteful...served in a semi-formal atmosphere including white table clothes and original rotating art displayed on the walls. Try Café Boulevard, where you will experience the atmosphere of a European sidewalk cafe, and taste cuisine from around the world. There are over 16 bars and restaurants to select from!

Soup's On!

This is delicious and heartwarming. (Tummy warming too!)
My family loved it!
Chef Jack's Corn Chowder Recipe courtesy Paula Deen 1 cup (2 sticks) butter
1 small onion, diced 1 small carrot, finely diced
1 small celery stalk, diced 1 clove garlic, minced
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
3 cups white corn kernels, fresh or frozen
3 cups chicken stock
2 cups half-and-half
Pinch freshly grated nutmeg
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

Melt 1 stick of butter in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add the onion, carrot, celery, and garlic, and saute for 2 minutes. Add the flour and stir to make a roux. Cook until the roux is lightly browned; set aside to cool to room temperature. Meanwhile, combine the corn and chicken stock in another saucepan, and bring to a boil. Simmer for 10 minutes. Pour the boiling stock with the corn (a little at a time) into the saucepan with the roux, whisking briskly so it doesn't lump. Return the skillet to the heat and bring to a boil. The mixture should become very thick. In a small saucepan, gently heat the half-and-half; stir it into the thick corn mixture. Add the nutmeg and salt and pepper, to taste. Just before serving, cut the remaining stick of butter into large chunks. Add it to enrich the soup, stirring until the butter melts.

Saturday, October 21, 2006


~My daughter and me on the beach in Virginia Summer 2006....a warm thought for a chilly morning~
It is cold this morning and the dog didn't want to go for his usual walk. With a wistful glance back at our cat, he was heard muttering,
"Damn but that cat's litter box is lookin' pretty good right about now!" Okay, I hallucinated
that last part but the glance WAS wistful....really it was.
Or maybe it was just gas.
Had a wonderful evening last night. We hit the neighbor lottery big when we moved into our home 4 years ago. I could not ask for better people with whom to share our small space on this planet. We all gathered next door for a little Autumn cheer and conversation.
And more cheer. Then a little more. I left very cheerful. Slap happy even.
A group of amazing women, with whom I graduated from High School, met last night at a local restaurant. From the way they all look you would think they wore those red caps and gowns about 15 years ago, NOT 33! They are a fun group...amazing people. I so wished I could have been there. I always enjoy seeing them but had dinner plans with my equally amazing mom.
Mom just moved back to our area after being away for 28 years. This has been a tough journey for her so my daughter and I wanted to take her someplace special for dinner. It has been an exhausting 3 weeks of painting, cleaning, packing, moving, laying on the floor complaining about my aching back, un packing, whining about my ruined manicure,
setting up, setting down, and helping Mom feel comfortable with this area again.
She and Dad made a good life for themselves "down South", but with Dad gone, it was time she returned. My mom has a wicked sense of humor when the mood is just right. It is from her I learned the fine art of throwing a sarcastic barb. My daughter is already picking up this talent. tradition! It's such a comfort.
It is going to be a nice day. The sun is out now, the Autumn chill is in the air and some of my dear friends are having my family over for a birthday dinner. Yes, this is the week I turn 50. I know. Hard to believe that *I* am 50 right? 65 maybe but 50?
50 Schmifty....I am one hot broad and a little thing like turning 50 is not gonna take the wind out of MY sails. Not gonna knock ME for a loop. Okay, so it is taking a puff or two from underneath my ample sails....but they say that 50 is the *new* 30. What exactly IS the NEW 30? Could someone explain this to me?

Friday, October 20, 2006

It's cold!

There is nothing like a mug of hot tea, chocolate or cider on a day like this. Still, in the Autumn, I prefer a steamy mug of spiced cider. Takes the chill right off.
Hot Spiced Cider Prep Time:10 min Start to Finish:10 min
Makes:6 servings (1 cup each)
Hot Spiced Cider There's nothing like warm, spicy apple cider to break the ice when you're entertaining on a chilly day. Prep Time:10 min Start to Finish:10 min Makes:6 servings (1 cup each)
Hot Spiced Cider 6 cups apple cider 1/2 teaspoon whole cloves 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg 3 cinnamon sticks 1. Heat all ingredients to boiling in 3-quart saucepan over medium-high heat; reduce heat. Simmer uncovered 10 minutes. 2. Strain cider mixture to remove cloves and cinnamon if desired. Serve hot.

First Post From Rabbit Run Cottage!

Hello World!
This is the first post from "Rabbit Run Cottage", my little spot on the world wide web. This blog will be a little of this, a little of that and a lot of that other thing. In other words, I have no idea where it will lead. I hope some of you will stick around for the ride. It may prove to be interesting....or not. We'll see.