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I talk to the trees

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  1. I’m a hand-spinner and knitter. Most of the time, I spin the “typical” fibers: sheep, angora, alpaca...basically the fibers you’d find in your local yarn shop. But occasionally, I get the opportunity to spin someone’s chiengora- dog combings. I don’t have an actual business. It’s more of a word of mouth thing. People will call and say, “You made Mrs. Smith some mittens from Fluffy, and I wondered if you could do the same for my Fido.” Back to the “normal” side of spinning: This green and gold Leicester Longwool fiber was purchased from none other than our own Hive Queen Empress Susan at a Peace Hill Farm stand in Williamsburg in the spring of 2019. I finally got around to spinning and knitting it up this winter.
  2. I was thinking about this thread, and thought if Dr Who is the world I’d like to live in, which show wouldn’t I want to live in? I came up with Doc Martin. I mean, has anyone calculated the life-threatening injury per capita rating of Portwenn? It must be insanely high! 😂
  3. Doctor Who, but only if I get to be a companion and do cool stuff. 😁
  4. Dd and I toasted the success of the Perseverance team with hot cocoa. You could tell they really wanted to jump up and down and hug each other. Fist bumps just didn’t seem sufficient!
  5. From friends who do feline rescue: The best way to keep a cat off the counters is to build a catwalk around the top of the room. Unlike dogs, who look up to us, cats know the proper order of things, and will literally jump at the chance to look down on their humans! 😉
  6. So I did address the topic with dh, and it turns out that he has been aware of his parents' behavior “for a few years” though he couldn’t or wouldn’t identify how long “a few years” is. He doesn’t recall ever being subjected to the same activities as a boy, and was completely unaware that his parents involved his sister when she was young. He did seem to have a bit of an “aha!” moment when he said that he has always known that his sister “absolutely despised” their father. I am more than a little concerned that he has had this knowledge for some time, and would not answer my question about whether or not he was told to keep it a secret from me. All he would say is that he didn’t think I needed to know. I feel very thankful that I heeded my mom-gut and never allowed my daughter to be alone with dh's family. Dd has always said that she felt uncomfortable around them, so I always made sure that I was present whenever she visited them. Before anyone jumps on me for this, let me say that there were numerous other basic health/safety reasons I wouldn’t allow her to be around them as well. (For example, sewing pins and other sharp implements left out and on the floor when dd was a toddler, MIL allowing dd to chew on her hospital ID tag as an infant, being unwilling to install car seat/booster and driving at unsafe speeds- which I witnessed.)
  7. No, the zoning department is separate from social services, but I assume that they will at least make an effort to speak to the actual owner as a part of the investigation. I also made it clear that I would be willing to talk to social services if I needed to. This poor, sweet woman (who once called me the best neighbor she had ever had just because I mowed her lawn a couple of times 😢) probably has no idea about any of this!
  8. Update in first post. After this experience and the thing with my ILs, I think my brain just wants to hibernate until spring. Y'all wake me in a few weeks, ok?
  9. For multiple reasons, I have gone no-contact with the IL's (crazy Covid/political/ conspiracy theory behaviors among them), but I am planning to talk to dh tonight about this. There are so many things that have seemed “off” about his family over the years. You know the feeling you get when something is strange, or doesn’t quite add up, but you can’t put your finger on exactly what it is? Maybe living a secret double life explains some of it. I'm also curious to know if dh was made to participate in these trips when he was young, and how he feels about it. I think I posted here first because I couldn’t actually call a friend on this one (small town), and I needed a chorus of sane people (thank you hive!) to chime in and help me process this information.
  10. May I please hijack the thread for a moment? @ktgrok Are we past the date when you can get citrus crates delivered from FL? We used to get boxes with all sorts of citrus fruits as a Christmas gift from our snowbird neighbors. This thread has made me want to order something similar. Citrus from the supermarket can be hit or miss. It may look pretty, but taste bland. Do you know of any good sellers/shippers?
  11. An excellent idea! I’m thinking I need to try a little of each!
  12. Ok, let’s have a show of hands. Who besides me now has a hankering for lemon-sugar pancakes?
  13. Is the magazine gig an overall better thing? I hope so!
  14. Edited the original post because I wasn’t quite clear. But here it is again: SIL is in her 30s now. Quoting myself because I now know why it bothers me so much. I was raised in a similar church to the one in-laws attend and took their children to. There is a very strong “the naked body is a thing to be viewed only by one's spouse” vibe, and a strong emphasis on modesty- especially for women, because you don’t want to be the cause of someone else's lustful thoughts. Being told that naked is bad every Wednesday and Sunday, while participating with your parents in something that has to be hidden and not spoken of at church (or, let’s be honest here, at school or anywhere else. Not saying that’s right, but in my particular part of the country, that sort of thing is pearl-clutchingly scandalous.) would have to be difficult. To be clear, I don’t have any real issues with the idea of naturists. I wish I could be a more body-positive person. I look in the bathroom mirror and see everything that’s sagging, not everything that works exactly as nature intended. It just came as a real humdinger of a shock. You’d think that if they really embraced the culture, in the over quarter of a century that I have known them, they would have said something, even just a discreet little mention. But they really are the “the Lord only wants your spouse to see your body” sort of Christians. There are other things that now make me lean toward feeling like IL's behavior was abusive (like my SIL's refusal to ever come home for a visit, not even when MIL had a very serious and dangerous surgery, and SIL's recent hospitalization for what was supposedly an accidental drug combination reaction.) Also, I should acknowledge here that I do understand that Baptist churches vary, but there are exactly zero that I know of in this neck of the woods that would be accepting of such activities.
  15. I understand that, and I honestly don’t have any problem with a child being raised in that type of setting. However, I think my ick-factor comes from them doing this quite covertly, while raising a child in the Southern Baptist tradition. I can’t imagine the sort of cognitive dissonance that would cause in a child.
  16. Yeah, surprising is putting it mildly. We are talking about 70-something, hyper-evangelicals who are very verbal about condemning all the “sinners” around them.
  17. I called my mother this afternoon because I was in the middle of an acute panic attack, and just needed some reassurance that it would pass. Somewhere in the conversation, I began discussing my in-laws, and how crazy I think it is that they really believe Covid is nothing but a cold. (MIL was a nurse. She should know better. I have nothing but pity for any of her patients!) My mother then says I should cut SIL (17 years younger than dh, and one of the rudest individuals I have ever met) some slack because she had a very difficult upbringing. I commented that she was always a mouthy, mean-spirited child- very rude and sassy to everyone, adults and children alike- and I never once heard of saw MIL correct her for any of her behaviors. Ok, normal conversation so far, but then my mother says, “You don’t know everything about her childhood.” And then the conversation took a turn I would never have expected in a million years. Apparently, several years ago, MIL (then 66) told my mother that she and FIL are regulars at nudist/naturist campsites and beaches. 😳And they took SIL with them when she was little, about to the age of 6-7. ICK. Just ICK. Maybe she was telling my mother this to see if she and my father were interested in going with them? IDK. We get -well, we did until I blocked MIL's phone/email address- emails every 6-8 weeks saying that they would probably be out of cell phone range because they were going camping. I guess this explains how passionate they are about camping! I'm not sure whether to be shocked, outraged, or just confused. This is a couple who attends church as my grandmother would have put it, “every time the lights are on.” FIL is a deacon, and just about got himself kicked out of my house the last time he was here for ranting about how horrible and sinful the LGBTQ community is. (I bit my tongue and left the room because it was Thanksgiving - 2019 if anyone is wondering- and I didn’t want to cause a scene.) I have no idea if they did this with dh and his brother, or if dh is even aware of it. I consider that to be abuse, but I know that there is a different vibe about the human body in that particular community. I guess I’m just shocked and trying to process the info. Anyway, the good news is that the panic attack did pass, and I now have a bit of a greater understanding of SIL's general disagreeable nature, as my mother intended. I still think they are bat guano crazy for not believing Covid is a thing though. Edit for clarification: SIL is now in her 30s and no longer a child. I’m not sure if I made that clear.
  18. Some of my favorites: Levar Burton Reads (pre-listen, as some have adult themes and language) Myths and Legends Cabinet of Curiosities Lore The Truth (same warning as above) Hidden Brain and a couple more: (both BBC) Discovery Witness History
  19. Advice from dd20, who has dealt with Raynauds since she was little: Space heater or hair dryer aimed directly at the affected extremity works the quickest, but leaves skin dry and chapped. Submerging the extremity in water all the way to the artery in the wrist or ankle is her preferred method for dealing with an attack. From one Raynauds mom to another: It is so very difficult to look at their hands and feet when this is happening, but once they know how to prevent and recover from (if necessary) an attack, it can be handled. If your son does wind up needing medication, please be sure that the MD is aware if his blood pressure runs low to begin with. DD’s last rheumatologist (she has secondary Raynauds) put her on a beta blocker without looking at her history of orthostatic hypotension, and the poor kid passed out from low BP. Not a good experience. She doesn’t see that rheumatologist any longer.
  20. I am so sorry. And the jawm was more of a “please don’t sing the praises of airbnb right now to me, especially if you’re making money hand over fist by hosting yourself and being a really bad neighbor.” Commiseration and stories of frustration are welcome....well, not welcome, because it would be nice if no one had to deal with them, but you get my drift!
  21. I have no wise words that can make you feel better, but I have 🤗🤗🤗🤗🤗.And I think everyone could use more of them right now.
  22. I hope the dog is getting plenty of love, water, and food, and has a place to stay out of all the nasty drizzly, sleety weather we have been experiencing! That said, my sheltie LIVES for the snow, and leaps around in it like Sergei Polunin showing off. My basenji mix, on the other hand, has to be coaxed outside with treats for potty duty when it is below 40. Double coats make a big difference!
  23. You post kinda breaks my heart for two reasons: I am sorry that you have to deal with drunken parties, whoever the participants may be, and your last statement about not knowing/ connecting with your neighbors doesn’t sound like a happy place at all. I want to live in a place where neighbors know neighbors, and watch out for each other, and pitch in to help each other when the need arises. I grew up in a neighborhood like that, and our first house 20 years ago was in a neighborhood like that, so I know they exist. I just can’t seem to find them! ETA: I just got off the phone with my mom. One of their long time neighbors just had a stroke and was taken away by ambulance. My father (aka: the best dude ever) just masked up and walked down the street to let the man's wife know that he would happily take care of their dog - or let the dog stay with my parents- if the hospital will let the wife in to be with her husband. That’s the kind of neighborhood I want to live in.
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