Wednesday, September 30, 2020

The first presidential debate



If this was anyone's first experience watching a presidential "debate" they have seen the most egregious example of what a debate is supposed to be. 

And the most egregious example of "presidential." 

It was, at best, painful.

At worst - a shit show.

My feeling from this point is that additional debates between Biden and trump are pointless. 

Especially if future moderators are going to be bullied as Chris Wallace was tonight. Some of which could have been easily stopped by a simple flick of an on/off button on the microphones.  

Chris Wallace should have been prepared for trump's arrogance and childishness.

trump pitched one childish temper tantrum after another, and refused to follow rules he had agreed to prior to the debate.

Rules he had no intention of following if they didn't suit the moment.

Anyone who is interested in knowing if what was said tonight was truthful, I would encourage you to do some fact checking.

Check both men.

Check their statements for yourself and for the good of this country.

And in case anyone might have missed this - the president of THIS COUNTRY refused to condemn white supremacy.


Anyone celebrating a "win" for tonight? 

Anyone other than the KKK and The Proud Boys? 


Debates don't usually change a voter's mind, but I think tonight's unhinged performance by a man who is scared to death he might be in jail this time next year might be the exception.

Monday, September 28, 2020

One of our rare days out

We're still sticking pretty close to home, but there are occassional errands to be run.

Today was one of those days to get out and do them.

And it was a good one.

We dropped off our ballots (Vote! Vote! Vote!), 

enjoyed our mountain scenery - including a little bit of fall color, 

And fun to see one of our sweet neighbors driving his horse drawn carriage down our road.

I love our 'hood.

Being surrounded by so much beauty reminds us of what is good in our lives.  And we are thankful.

We picked up lunch (drive-thru), and picked up mail, and picked up our grocery order (curb side).

A wonderful mail day! 

Used books, new books, ARCs, bought books, gifted books, stickers and notes from friends.

AND a really really really nice check from Antiques on Howard (thank YOU to whoever is wearing a lot of pretty new-to-you jewelry!).  

And here's my reminder to you.  If you haven't already, please VOTE!

Sunday, September 27, 2020

One of the things I'm missing most


Bruce Springsteen has a new album  coming out in October.  

His 20th.  

And the E Street Band is joining him on this one.

Earlier this week he released the title track, Letter to You, and  the new song, Ghosts.

I especially love the Ghosts video with its clips from past shows.

While watching  I couldn't help but smile and remember being in that crowd at a few of his concerts.  

Bruce Springsteen knows how to do a concert!

What a talent.

What an entertainer.

Donald and I love live shows.

Going to concerts is one of the things we love best, and we have seen some of the greats.

Many of them, more than once.  Some more than twice ...

Our latest show would have been last week; a Brooks & Dunn reunion.

We both love Brooks & Dunn and have seen them a few times.  And were looking forward to seeing them again.

Due to COVID, the show has been postponed a year.  

I'm not sure we'll be ready, even in a year, for large crowd get-togethers (regardless of what the guy in The White House and his supporters think.  I think they're being stupid and damned reckless).


Missing them.

Friday, September 25, 2020

Dishes with a lesson

Speaking of dishes,

and collections.

A collection that will still be around our house for as long as I'm around is our collection of Torquay Motto Ware.  There's quite a lot and it's placed along shelves among the books.

"Torquay is the generic name given to 20 potteries centered around the popular seaside resort of the same name in South Devon, England, that made red earthenware with slip decoration in the form of a picture. Many also sported brief sayings on them, thus the name Motto Ware."

One particular piece makes me happy 

One piece which seems especially  timely right now makes me sad with its truth

Thursday, September 24, 2020

What to keep, what to sell . . .


When you spend your life collecting, sooner or later you're going to have to part with some things you've collected.

In our case, we're still getting rid of some things that had been boxed up and put in our storage building out back when we moved into this house in 1996.

Those things are still moving into our booth at Antiques on Howard, and sales continue to be good, despite the pandemic.  The store was closed for several weeks in March and April, but once they re-opened the tourists and famililes of Appalachian State University students were back and spending.  

I've only been in the store one time since March.

I went early in the day when they opened, masked, as was the owner.

I put out some new stock pretty quickly and left.

We mail our rent check and they mail us a check for sales along with a list of what sold.  The arrangement is a good one and it's always interesting to see what people bought.

When we were with Don's family over Christmas last year, they sent us home with boxes of stuff they no longer wanted; WONDERFUL stuff, including a lot of silver.  So, those boxes have been moved ahead of our own boxes.  

Now, we're certainly not entertaining like we once did.  But even back in those days of dinner parties, we weren't really "silver" people other than our flatwear which we do still use and still love.  It's not unusual for us to pull it out for pizza.

Our friend John gave us a place setting of our silver when we got married and said, "we use our good stuff every day.  You should too."

Well, we don't use it every day, but we use it pretty often.

I don't think newlyweds care a thing in the world about things like china and silver these days, do they?  Their gift registers seem to be more practical.

I like pretty things.

One of the things we've "over" collected is pretty dishes.

I've always loved setting a pretty table.

And while the dishes we have can attest to being well used and much appreciated, it might be time for some of them to find a new place to live.

We have fine china, every day china (is that still a "thing?"), nice dishes, expensive dishes, not so expensive dishes, inexpensive dishes, cheap dishes and bargain basement cheap dishes.  Old dishes.  Newer dishes.  Family dishes.  Pottery dishes.  Gifted dishes.  "Had to have" dishes.



I've been thinking about these dishes.

This morning I did some baking.

Blueberry muffins.

Decided I wanted my muffin on a pretty plate.

And from there I got silly.

WHICH pretty plate?

And decided right then I'd take some "muffin on a pretty plate" pictures and post them to see if it would help me decide which dishes I want to keep and which I might decide to pack up to take to Antiques on Howard to sell.

These are "some" of the dishes - - -

And I had my muffin on this pretty dish.

Tuesday, September 22, 2020

New (old) Books


I love browsing in a bookstore.

I'm especially fond of browsing in used bookstores.

Since that's on our list of things we're not allowed to do right now, I've been browsing through bookstores (old and new) on-line.

I love searching out pop-up books.

I only have a few, but today I have two new (old) ones I found through

Both these books feed my "fix" for pop-ups AND for a place I love  - - - 

Monet's home and gardens in Giverny

Both books are in excellent shape and appear to have all their pieces.  

The garden for the Bob Hersey book hasn't even been put together, so I'll get to play with that.

Small joys.  Sometimes that's all we need.

What we've lost

 There is no literature or poetry in this White House.

No music.

No Kennedy Center award celebrations.

There are no pets in this White House.

No loyal man’s best friend. No Socks the family cat.

No kids’ science fairs.

No times when this president takes off his blue suit-red tie uniform and becomes human, except when he puts on his white shirt-khaki pants uniform and hides from Americans to

play golf.

There are no images of the first family enjoying themselves together in a moment of relaxation.

No Obamas on the beach in Hawaii moments, or Bushes fishing in Kennebunkport, no Reagans on horseback, no Kennedys playing touch football on the Cape.

I was thinking the other day of the summer when George H couldn’t catch a fish and all the grandkids made signs and

counted the fish-less days.

And somehow, even if you didn’t even like GHB, you got caught up in the joy of a family that loved each other and had fun.

Where did that country go?

Where did all of the fun and joy and expressions of love and happiness go?

We used to be a country that did the ice bucket challenge and raised millions for charity.

We used to have a president that calmed and soothed the nation instead dividing it.

And a First Lady that planted a garden instead of ripping one out.

We are rudderless and joyless.

We have lost the cultural aspects of society that make America great.

We have lost our mojo, our fun, our happiness.

The cheering on of others. Gone.

The shared experiences of humanity that makes it all worth it. Gone.

The challenges AND the triumphs that we shared and celebrated.

The unique can-do spirit Americans have always been known for. Gone.

We have lost so much in so short a time."

~. Elayne Griffin Baker

Monday, September 21, 2020

What I'm Doing To Stay Somewhat Sane

My friends at Jungle Red are talking about resilience during hard times and what they're doing.

It's an excellent post, and you can read it here.

I responded there, but wanted to be a bit more expansive here at Meanderings and Muses.

I have several pretty journals.  One is dedicated to quotes I like, and to things I'm, at the moment of writing, grateful for. 

And I read poetry. 

And I wander about with my camera snapping things that touch me in some small way.  This morning it was a few photos I took from my back deck.

and these two are always favorite subjects


I bake.


I write letters to my representatives.


I call them (more often than they appreciate).

I was chided and rebuked and scolded for my outspokeness back when our present president was first elected.

And, had my feelings hurt by people I respected.

Perhaps I was prescient because many of those people are now speaking out.

I'm glad.

It's no longer political - it's much, much deeper.

I will never regret speaking up and speaking out - even when my voice shakes.

I hope you all have things you're doing to help you stay sane and healthy.

Sending out some good thoughts to each of you.

Sunday, September 20, 2020

Ruth might like it if Mitch McConnell would do the right thing and  pass a Coronovirus bill (along with the approximately 400 House bills sitting on his desk) before pushing for a new Supreme Court nomination.

Do the right thing for Ruth and The American People!

sign the petition here:

Saturday, September 19, 2020

What they said then

I guess we'll be finding out soon if these GOP people will stick to their principles based on what they said in 2016.

Anyone want to place a bet?

The GOP has no principles.  And they're in the process of proving that right now in the hours after Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg's death.

Let's go back to 2016  - -  -

After Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia died on February 13, 2016, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said
“The American people should have a voice in the selection of their next Supreme Court Justice.  Therefore, this vacancy should not be filled until we have a new president.”  McConnell sneeringly called the principle the “Biden rule,” referring to remarks in 1992 from then-Sen. Joe Biden, who urged the Senate president to delay a hypothetical confirmation until after the election if a vacancy did appear, following the contentious confirmation of Justice Clarence Thomas.

Senator Lindsey Graham:
“I want you to use my words against me. If there’s a Republican president in 2016 and a vacancy occurs in the last year of the first term, you can say Lindsey Graham said let’s let the next president, whoever it might be, make that nomination."  AND in 2018, he said:  “If an opening comes in the last year of President Trump’s term, and the primary process has started, we’ll wait to the next election” 

Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.): “I don’t think we should be moving on a nominee in the last year of this president’s term — I would say that if it was a Republican president .”

Sen. Jim Inhofe (R-Okla.): “It makes the current presidential election all that more important as not only are the next four years in play, but an entire generation of Americans will be impacted by the balance of the court and its rulings. Sens. Barack Obama, Joe Biden, Hillary Clinton, Chuck Schumer and Harry Reid have all made statements that the Senate does not have to confirm presidential nominations in an election year. I will oppose this nomination as I firmly believe we must let the people decide the Supreme Court’s future.”

Sen. Joni Ernst (R-Iowa): "We will see what the people say this fall and our next president, regardless of party, will be making that nomination."

Sen. Richard Burr (R-N.C.):  "In this election year, the American people will have an opportunity to have their say in the future direction of our country. For this reason, I believe the vacancy left open by Justice Antonin Scalia should not be filled until there is a new president."

John Hoeven from N.D: "There is 80 years of precedent for not nominating and confirming a new justice of the Supreme Court in the final year of a president’s term so that people can have a say in this very important decision."

Rob Portman from Ohio: "It is common practice for the Senate to stop acting on lifetime appointments during the last year of a presidential term, and it’s been nearly 80 years since any president was permitted to immediately fill a vacancy that arose in a presidential election year.”

Paul Ryan, House speaker:
"This has never been about who the nominee is. It is about a basic principle. Under our Constitution, the president has every right to make this nomination, and the Senate has every right not to confirm a nominee. I fully support Leader McConnell and Chairman Grassley's decision not to move forward with the confirmation process. We should let the American people decide the direction of the court."

Sen. Charles Grassley
 (R-Iowa) Senate Judiciary chair: "A lifetime appointment that could dramatically impact individual freedoms and change the direction of the court for at least a generation is too important to get bogged down in politics. The American people shouldn't be denied a voice. Do we want a court that interprets the law, or do we want a court that acts as an unelected super legislature? This year is a tremendous opportunity for our country to have a sincere and honest debate about the role of the Supreme Court in our constitutional system of government."

John Cornyn, R-Texas, Senate Judiciary member: "The next justice could change the ideological makeup of the Court for a generation, and fundamentally reshape American society in the process.

At this critical juncture in our nation's history, Texans and the American people deserve to have a say in the selection of the next lifetime appointment to the Supreme Court.

The only way to empower the American people and ensure they have a voice is for the next President to make the nomination to fill this vacancy."

Sen. Cory Gardner (R-Col.): “I think we’re too close to the election. The president who is elected in November should be the one who makes this decision.”

Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas): "It has been 80 years since a Supreme Court vacancy was nominated and confirmed in an election year. There is a long tradition that you don’t do this in an election year.”

Sen. Thom Tillis (R-N.C.): “Vice President Biden’s remarks may have been voiced in 1992, but they are entirely applicable to 2016. The campaign is already under way. It is essential to the institution of the Senate and to the very health of our republic to not launch our nation into a partisan, divisive confirmation battle during the very same time the American people are casting their ballots to elect our next president.”

Sen. David Perdue (R-Ga.):
“The very balance of our nation’s highest court is in serious jeopardy. As a member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, I will do everything in my power to encourage the president and Senate leadership not to start this process until we hear from the American people.”

Sen. Tim Scott (R-S.C.): “The next President must nominate successor that upholds constitution, founding principles.”

Sen. Ron Johnson (R-Wisc.): “I strongly agree that the American people should decide the future direction of the Supreme Court by their votes for president and the majority party in the U.S. Senate.”

(source for above quotes: Mother Jones)

Last night, approximately one hour after the announcement of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg death we hear this from McConnell

"President Trump's nominee will receive a vote on the floor of the United States Senate." 

Once again showing the world exactly what a crass and disrespectful man he is.

Let the Republican hypocrisy begin. 

Friday, September 18, 2020

Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg


Rest now You Giant 

You Warrior 

You Brilliant Brave Soul 

You who gave Us Courage 

And Hope 

Rest now 

More than a Trail Blazer

You didn’t make history 

You changed it 

Reshaped it 

Course corrected 

You who gave Us all of You 

Fought for Us with all of You 

With every moment God gave You 

With every Breath 

Rest now 

It’s Our turn 

To take up Your mantle 

To not lose sight 

To push on 

You taught Us how to fight 

You made Us more than soldiers 

You leave an Army in your wake 

You taught Us what legacy is 

To give more than we take 

Rest now 

You Champion

You Queen  

You Glorious 

Forever #RBG 

Forever Our Hero 


        - - -  Leslé Honoré

Joan Baez, artist

Voting Early


No election in my lifetime has been as important as this one.  

I honestly believe democracy is at stake and, frankly, another four years under this present administration frightens me.

So.  Donald and I have filled out our ballots and will drop them off at the courthouse voter drop box.

Sadly, I just wouldn't feel comfortable mailing them this year.  And don't trust electronic voting machines.

What has this country come to that voter suppression - very real voter suppression - is even a thing?

(Teeshirt available here)

Are you registered to vote? 

Need to check your registration?

Considering voting by mail?

Need to know where your polling place is?

Here's EVERYTHING you need: