Wednesday, April 29, 2015


I received an unexpected surprise last Saturday: a dozen roses from the mother of one of my tutoring students. 

I took this picture after a few days: I had trimmed the stems and placed the roses in two different vases. 

I don't usually get gifts from my tutoring students. In the past, I've received a few gifts around the Christmas holidays. I appreciate them all, but the unexpected gifts are the best.  


I've been thinking about how busy I am lately.

I have several tutoring students and I'm teaching an ACT class. I have to finish a WPA project for the Arts Commission. I'm dealing with health insurance and income tax problems. I'm studying for the revised SAT, and need to take a new test.  

Then there are all the normal day-to-day to-do's: preparing meals, shopping, doing chores, paying bills. I also want to work out, do yoga, and, you know, blog and write.

Then I listen to my students. Each of them listed a litany of tests, essays, research papers and projects in  a very short time period. 

I'm not so busy after all. It's all relative. 

Thursday, April 23, 2015

11 Straight: 10-0 at Home

The Mets have been awesome. They have the best record in baseball and have been perfect in their first home stand.

The Mets also have an 11 game winning streak, tying a franchise record. The '86 Mets also had an 11 game winning streak in April, and started their season 13-3.

Tomorrow, the Mets head up to the Bronx for the first of two subway series against the Yankees. Let's keep things going.

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

RIP Rosie the Riveter Model

A few minutes ago, Jeff told me that Mary Doyle Keefe, the original model for Rosie the Riveter, died at age 92. Reading the story on CNN, I realized that I'd never seen the original Norman Rockwell image. I know the second image in the story with the caption, "We Can Do It!"

The image and idea of Rosie will live on.

Tuesday, April 21, 2015


This is the best Mets start in history; they had the same start in 1986. Is it an omen?

I believe.

Sunday, April 19, 2015

Eight in a Row, Seven Straight at Home, But...

It's been fun to watch the Mets lately. They won opening day and their first series against Washington. They lost the next series in Atlanta, but won the finale, which started their winning streak, including their first four-game sweep of the Marlins.

It's only been two weeks, but two weeks of winning beats two weeks of losing or mediocre play. Even when they placed David Wright on the DL, the Mets didn't miss a beat; Eric Campbell has subbed admirably.

On to today's game. We lost two players, hit by balls. The first was pitcher Jerry Blevins, hit by a comebacker. He still managed to throw out the hitter, scooping the ball into his glove, and tossing it to first base. Then catcher Travis d'Arnaud was hit by a pitch.

Can we hold on? I'm a believer.

Friday, April 17, 2015

Mets in First

I thought about writing a post with this title on Opening Day, but refrained. I was happy enough that the Mets had returned to their winning ways.

The Mets now have sole possession of first place it the National League East with an 8-3 record and a six-game winning streak. Things are looking good.

Let's go Mets!


Earlier this week on a walk with Spike I noticed the first daffodils in bloom. Yesterday, I picked up two bunches of daffodils at Trader Joe's. I selected flowers with closed buds, hoping they would last longer. They opened beautifully today.

Every time I look at them, I smile. A great value at $3.00.

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Jeopardy: Second Try

Tonight I took the Jeopardy online test for a second time; the first was over two years ago.

The test seemed much harder this time. There were a few questions that I just didn't know, a few more that I didn't remember in the 15 second limit: e.g. catalytic converter.

I thought I did pretty well two years ago. This time, I think I blew it.

I just have to wait and hope.

Saturday, April 11, 2015

What's Cooking?

I picked up rack of lamb about a week ago to try a lamb recipe with mint pesto. It was easy. Season the racks with salt and pepper, brown the lamb and then roast at 400 degrees for 20 minutes, cut the lamb into chops, and spread the pesto on them. So much better than that artificial mint jelly.

I served the lamb with baked sweet potatoes and a kale/romaine salad with carrots and red peppers. We also enjoyed a pinotage called Six Hats.

Everything was delicious.

Thursday, April 9, 2015

Five Years

My father died five years ago today.

He hadn't been feeling well, but his symptoms sounded like a reaction to new medication. I still remember the call from the hospital: my disbelief and shock.

If he were still around, we would be talking baseball--excited about Opening Week--hopeful for the Mets (me) and the Phillies (him.) I wish I could have that conversation.

Sunday, April 5, 2015

Signs of Spring

Two weeks into spring and we're still hearing about snow in weather forecasts. Winter doesn't want us to escape its icy grasp. But things are looking better.

On Monday, the landscapers were working on the grounds; Tuesday was the last day of the Winter's Farmers Market; Spike visited dog parks several times this week; we saw a Mister Softee truck on Saturday.

And then there's baseball. We watched several spring training games, and the Mets played very well. I know it means nothing, but I find it hopeful. Opening Day is tomorrow. That's when it counts.