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Barbara Fritchman Thompson Diary

Week of 4 February 2002

Latest Update: Friday, 10 May 2002 11:55

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Monday, 4 February 2002

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I posted a couple of pictures from the downstairs area to give you an idea of what it looks like. When we bought this house it was a dark, 800 square foot play room with two windows and dark green fake paneling. We expanded the room and installed real pine paneling. Lenore really enjoyed living down there while she could, but we now have her living upstairs so that we don't have to run up and down the stairs constantly. This area is now a full guest area for visitors. 

downstairs-1.jpg (65636 bytes) downstairs-2.jpg (68899 bytes) downstairs-3.jpg (75937 bytes)

Quiet, restful day yesterday. After lunch I had intended to come back to my office and do some paperwork. I started watching a dog show on Animal Planet and fell asleep on the couch instead. After a really good 2 1/2 hour nap I felt much better. After briefly checking my mail I worked on my puzzle until time to start dinner. After dinner I put in another hour or so on the puzzle before hitting the couch to read until bed time.

Off to the gym for Body Pump this morning. I also need to make a stop at the library and the pet store before coming back home. After a quick lunch I need to leave again to make another couple of stops on the way to get my hair cut. 

Hope your Monday gets your week off to a good start.


Tuesday, 5 February 2002

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Yesterday afternoon while out running errands I stopped at Sears and bought me a new lawn toy. Although the primary function will be for vacuuming up leaves in the fall I can start using it now for various other functions. It is also a blower and a chipper/shredder which means I can grind up sticks and make mulch. 

We have a hand held gas blower that is in the shop right now getting a much needed tune up. Bob can continue to use it for blowing out the gutters and I can use my big one for larger jobs like blowing off the drive and cleaning up after I trim bushes.

The wind was howling like mad today. The cold front that we were to get definitely came through. We had a few snow showers this afternoon but nothing that hit the ground. Last night it was in the teens with 15 to 20 mph winds. Sitting my office yesterday I could hear it howling around the house as I worked. 

Off to SciWorks this morning. Paperwork and things to do this afternoon. 

I started a new book, The Stone Flower Garden by Deborah Smith. I have read her previous novel, On Bear Mountain not too long ago. Her new novel is set in the fictional city of Burnt Stand, NC. Smith has set up a basic story of the southern rich versus the southern poor but alluding to the fact that both can be very lonely in life. Darlene Union is the grand daughter of a wealthy marble tycoon of which the entire city is founded upon. Orphaned at a young age, she is being raised by her grandmother in both the social behavior of the rich and how to run the family business. She spends her entire life on the estate not even allowed to attend the local public school. Visits to town are always accompanied by her grandmother.

Eli Wade, the son of a poor marble cutter, and Darl meet on a hot summer day in 1972 when Eli's father comes to town to be employed by the marble company. Eli is attacked by a local gang of kids and Darl comes to his rescue. From that day forward Darl falls for Eli and they become good friends in secret. Their secret meeting place is the Stone Flower Garden on the estate. 

So far the book is very good. I really enjoyed On Bear Mountain. Deborah Smith writes very well. As I think I stated in my review of her earlier novel, I do not read very many southern women writers but I really enjoy her writing and her characters. I think this novel will turn out to be another good one.


Wednesday, 6 February 2002

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Hi, sorry for the short post. Not really too much to talk about. This morning I am off to play golf with my dad. It is supposed to rain tonight and tomorrow so we are playing today instead. The weather folks cannot decided if it will start as freezing rain/sleet/snow/ or what. 

With the temperatures now and those predicted for today and tonight looks to me like it will be mostly rain.


Thursday, 7 February 2002

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Although it was a little on the chilly side and cloudy we had a nice round of golf. The course was practically deserted with only the most die hard players out on a day like yesterday. It started to rain just as I was driving back across town around 2 pm. We got a little bit of frozen stuff early before the temperatures actually got warmer as the day progressed. We did a good rain over night but dodged the proverbial ice storm/major snow storm bullet again.

I have a funny dog story that is not about one of my dogs but about one of the golden retrievers who gets to work on the golf course where we play. One of the guys, Mike,  who works on the course mowing, cutting trees, etc brings his older golden Jesse with him all the time. It is not unusual to see Jesse running after their golf cart or truck somewhere on the course. Jesse will often stop to visit some of the golfers he knows or give out an occasional bark. Off and on I have seen the younger golden retriever out on the course but had not seen her lately. Mike lives in a house along the 17th green and I have seen the younger golden out in the chained fence.   

Yesterday, since the course was pretty empty Mike and some of the other golf course guys were working behind the tee of the fourteenth hole cutting down trees. Dad and I had started on the back first since a small group of regulars was going off the front. We hit our tee shots onto the par three 12th green and proceeded to drive up to the green. As we exited the golf cart, here came the younger golden bounding over to see me from the hill above. Just as he almost got to me, she stopped and grabbed my golf ball off the green and into his mouth. I tried the drop command to no avail. By this time Mike heard me and saw what was happening and called the dog over to him to give up the ball. I proceeded to tell him it was okay, that I had dogs who do silly things like that, and I was not mad. Now I can see why Mike does not let the younger dog out on the course. Another golfer may not have been as amused. Mike told me her name but I cannot remember it at this point. She is only a year and half and I am sure will eventually be trust worthy enough to run loose around the course like Jesse does. They have another old, black lab named Putt Putt that also hangs out. She mostly lays around in the sun near the club house. I just enjoy seeing these dogs have such a wonderful life being able to run around working all day and have so much fun.

This morning I am off to the gym. This afternoon Lenore wants to go to one of the big craft stores here in town. Since today is her bath day Donna can dress her for going out. 



Friday, 8 February 2002

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I took Lenore to the A C Moore crafts store yesterday afternoon. This was my first visit to this craft establishment and I must say I was very impressed. Not with the merchandise but the neatness and ability to find things. Since I do not do crafts I do not often frequent these types of stores. 

We were gone a couple of hours by the time we finished up at the craft store and I made a couple of stops on the way home at the bank and to get gas. Although it was a miserable, rainy day I guess she enjoyed getting out.

Last night I finished Stone Flower Garden. Even though it had a typical storybook ending where all the characters live "happy ever after" it was still a good novel.

This morning I am off to the gym and the drugstore. This afternoon our friend Bonnie Richardson and I are going to Old Salem for a tour of the exhibit at the museum "Gunsmiths of Salem and the Vogler Family of Artisans". I am a member of the Friends of Old Salem. Should be a fun afternoon. After we finish walking around the exhibit we are coming back to the house to get Bob and go out to the little cafe for dinner.

Tonight is the opening ceremonies for the Winter Olympics. I find the winter sports much more to my liking than the ones for the summer. I plan to try and watch a lot of the coverage of the events.



Saturday, 9 February 2002

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Happy Saturday to everyone. Bonnie and I had a wonderful time at Old Salem yesterday. After we walked around the museum exhibit we strolled around Old Salem under clear blue skies with temperatures in the low to mid 50's. We got back to the house close to five o'clock and picked up Bob to go out to dinner.

We returned to the house and Bonnie and I played a rousing game of Scrabble. She then played with the dogs. She took a liking to Malcolm because of his "ballmania" before taking off for home herself.

I watched some of the opening ceremonies for the Olympics before heading off to bed to read a few chapters in another Jill Churchill mystery, Fear of Frying.

This morning I have already given Bob a haircut. Next I need to brush the dogs. The temperatures are to be in the low 60's today again under clear blue skies. I am going to get some yard work done once it dries out a little. Bob is going to help me put my knew lawn toy together so I can vacuum the lawn of leaves and twigs. I need to dig up a couple of dead bushes which I will replace in the spring and do some general winter clean up.


Sunday, 10 February 2002

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I tried out my new lawn vacuum which worked great. In the afternoon I got dad's old mulching mower out and gave the high spots in the yard a quick trim. I must say I really enjoyed spending the better part of the day being outside in the sunshine and fresh air for a change.

Yesterday afternoon our friend Robin called. She was supposed to have dinner with us tonight. However, she has been hit with that horrid stomach bug that is going around and called to let us know she would need to postpone. I had thawed out some ribs and chicken to barbecue on the grill. So, instead of fixing them tonight I went ahead and grilled them for dinner last night. We can eat the leftovers for dinner one night this week. 

The other reason she called was to give us some rather sad news. Sue Stephens is a friend of Robin's and ours and was our vet until she sold her practice. Sue's father died suddenly Friday. This was a shock because he was only 70 and in very good health. 

After I finished up in the yard and took a shower I watched some of the afternoon Olympic competition before fixing dinner. Last night I did some reading and watched a little of the evening competition. We walked the dogs and I went to bed to read but did not even make it ten o'clock before having to turn out the light.

Clean house this morning. This afternoon there is the first race of the season, The Bud Pole Shootout. A quick 70 lap race that serves more or less as a tune up for those drivers who won poles in last year's events. Then I guess I will watch some Olympics.




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