Category: Life

Supporting Community Theater

As a proponent of community support, I want to play my part when the time comes. I do what I can. We all have individual talents.  I volunteer now and then to assist organizations like the theatre. I want to see the arts thrive and they need all the help they can get these days. I can fundraise, make phone calls, and go door to door to publicize a cause or otherwise participate in local activities. When you work for your city, you meet wonderful people who enjoy giving of themselves. It is a rare treat in this day and age of egotism and conceit.  I pride myself on being a real Georgia peach in every sense of the term. I want to live a life of a citizen who cares. When a friend asked me to help put up flyers for a show she is in at the Southwest Arts Center, I didn’t balk. I was ready to do the job promptly and efficiently to make the production a success. I can’t build sets or make costumes, but I can certainly walk around the neighborhood and staple flyers on posts and walls. I have my trusty staple gun for the job. They call me the Staple Slinger. It is important in our area to promote events including the latest plays in the local theatre.

 

While I am not an actress, I appreciate what my friend is doing. It is more than a hobby or mere pastime. She is serious about her craft. I love watching her on the stage, exhibiting her talent to an admiring public. The theatre is infectious and I never miss an offering. We have local playwrites who have gained popularity over the years. I didn’t take advantage of the world of acting when I was in school, perhaps because there was no blatant talent there. I can be a bystander and part of an audience instead. I love it when the plays revolve around Georgia topics and local situations. In case you didn’t notice, I am a very loyal subject of my state.

 

I bought the staple gun long ago for another purpose. I wasn’t mounting flyers but making my own art surface. You can buy wood frames in any size that you can assemble. They fit into one another to make a receptacle for canvas. This material comes in any size since it is on a roll in the art store. You can buy different textures and thicknesses. You stretch the canvas across the frame and staple it in place with your gun. While this might seem like a lot of trouble, it is much cheaper than buying a ready-made canvas in the store. You can also get the exact size you want. Mostly you see standard sizes but I wanted something other than a square or proportionate rectangle. I learned to use the gun quite well. When it came time to distribute the flyers, I was already an expert.

Pool Care

Summer is as nice as it can be in Georgia, even if it gets rather hot. The reason is that so many people have pools, many of which are portable above-ground models. They aren’t that expensive compared to the permanent kind and they do the job nicely of refreshing you, the kids and your friends when the temperature soars. They sure make the months from June to September tolerable. They also feel like you are on vacation when you can’t get away to a resort or the beach.

It is a real luxury to have any kinds of pool in the backyard so you don’t have to trek to the club or public community center. You can go as often as you like, never having to look for a nearby parking spot. It is unpleasant to just walk across a paved parking lot with the concrete radiating extreme heat. You can sit as long as you like in cool, swirling water to relax your muscles or have an ice cold beverage. The kids can splash about and frolic with glee. It is a wonderful time for the family to bond.

Owning a pool means maintenance and care or you will not appreciate the poor condition of the water. Larger above-ground pools use chlorine to purify just like in-ground versions. It doesn’t last forever and the water can turn green, indicating that a shock with chemicals is needed. The good news is that you can do it yourself with a kit from Home Pools Plus and avoid the expense of a professional service. Or you can get a neighborhood kid who wants to earn a little pocket money to buy the supplies and dump them in according to schedule. It is important to check the pH or the kids might get burned or harm done to sensitive eyes. There are many choices so that you can select the solution best for your size pool. In-ground pools have automatic robot systems and they are now making smaller versions for portable units. They work best, however, to clean leaves and debris that float on the service. As far as I know, they do not yet emit chemicals with precision. This would be a coup for the industry for sure. Meanwhile we do it manually and learn the ropes fast for safety and security.

I also keep a net on a pole nearby to skim the water for large objects that get in the way of young swimmers. Your neighborhood kid can use it as well, but it comes in handy because things can get in the water in between his visits. I hate it when my kids have to maneuver between twigs and floating dirt. Keeping a pool clean is a definite must. At least you don’t have ceramic tile to scrub. This can be a real chore if you let it go and it gets coated with lime or mold. My choice to get an above-ground pool was supremely practical and well thought out.

Longer Lunch Break than I’d Planned!

I am pretty punctual and law abiding in the workplace so to speak. I fancy myself as a good employee. When I take a longer lunch break than usual, I feel guilty and ashamed. I know this is a ridiculous attitude because no one even notices unless you do it all the time. If you are missing for a couple of hours, what can you expect? It is not that strict in the office and you are expected to be your own policeman. If you take five minutes more, the boss isn’t going to chop off your head. That would be a bit drastic. I tell you, my blog readers, because it just so happened that I got a flat tire one day while riding on a bike trail near my place of employment. I was on my lunch break and knew I had to be prompt. After all, I am Miss Reliable most of the town, if not always. So here I was with this horrid flat and no other vehicle in sight to take me back.

It only took a minute for me to realize that I had an air compressor from Compressor Force mounted on the back of the bicycle. I also had a patch kit in the trunk of my car. As it turns out, I had driven to the trail with my bike mounted on the hood since it was a long ride in itself. I do this as a rule and it works out well letting me have some time outdoors within the brief time allotted for lunch. It is a great way to refresh yourself and vent after a tough morning. It allows me time after work to go on errands or to the gym. I love being self-sufficient and fixing the flat was clearly an example of independence. I didn’t need to call for help, if any would even come to me on the trail. I don’t think the auto club repairs bicycles on the spot. Here I was doing it alone and it worked out fine. I put air in the tire, rode to the car without a problem (the air was ample for the distance), got out the patch kit and repaired it in a flash. I could have waited until I got home, but I didn’t want to forget about it. I envisioned the next time I was in the mood for a lunchtime ride only to find a flat tire.

Every bike rider needs to think about an air compressor for emergencies. It happens all the time. You hit a rock or jagged piece of metal and you are done. At home, it is a matter of nails in the alley from some local construction job. They are a menace for a car or a bike. The patch kit is good enough to get home in a pinch although you may want to take it to the shop to be sure.

A Day of Fitness and Fun for the Whole Family!

Georgia isn’t known to be an outdoor state like Colorado with its glorious powder snow and miles of ski trails. It isn’t a hiking state like Utah with all the scenic canyons to explore. Most every state in the union has some outdoor recreation; it is just a matter of what you like. How about the rapids in the Grand Canyon in Arizona or Yosemite National Park in California. There is boating in Washington, dude ranches in Wyoming and Montana, historic excursions by bike in Virginia and further south. Let’s not cut Georgia short however. There is a lot of a family to do with the many bike trails. Okay, it isn’t daredevil mountain biking, but it is safe family fun. You want even the little kids to come along. How do you manage that? Let me tell you about the joys of having a good bike trailer like the ones I found here. The young ones love to ride along behind in special bike trailers that are made just for one or two toddlers.

We pack up the bikes, shove the trailer in the SUV, and I pack a hearty lunch for break time in the great outdoors. This is our family photo time so friends and family can share our joy “on the road.” What would we do without Facebook and Instagram? We would be living in isolation. Every time we head out, we select new trails to explore so we can extol the virtues of scenic Georgia time and time again. Each group of photos has a different appeal. It depends on the weather of course and we always welcome a sunny blue sky.

Biking is fitness fun and as parents, we can really use time to take care of ourselves. We are so busy with the kids, that the gym is a vague word that doesn’t come up too often. For the kids, it is all about amusement and having a great communal day. Later that night we can recount our wanderings and the kids can express what they liked best about the bikes. I never did this much when I was a child and there was no bike trailer to help my parents out. Now, all you have to do is know how to attach it in seconds, and the family is on its way to a roaring good time. We yell and scream and let the world know we are passing by. We stop for lunch and sing songs and get excited about the rest of the day. I will never sell Georgia short when it comes to outdoor activities and you don’t have to wait in a ski life line. Biking is wholesome, safe, economical, and never boring. There is always something new to see. Kids never tire of our sessions and remind us periodically when the time has come for another outing. If you live in the great state of Georgia, I will help you locate the best bike trails near where you live. You don’t have to travel far as there are many to choose from.

Making a Friend in an Unexpected Place

There is great joy in making new friends. It doesn’t happen that often beyond childhood when you let other kids into your life practically on a daily basis. New friends are to be treasured and never ignored. No matter how busy we are, we need to make time for social encounters. It is healthy for us and no doubt uplifting for the friends. Bonding is easy if you find activities you enjoy together such as going to dinner, the movies, a sports event, or a walk in the park. I mention the park because this is where I met a special person who happens to be an ER nurse. I was sitting on a bench having a snack and just whiling away the time. It seemed like hours of boredom passed and I was thinking of going home. Just at that moment, a woman in a nurse’s uniform covered by a jacket approached the bench and sat down. I was ripe for conversation having been sitting so long.

We started to share stories and found that we were similar in age and had a lot of things in common, although she had her work and certain favorite pastimes. I like hearing about what other people like to do. We decided to meet again as she had to get back to work and planned on going to a restaurant nearby that we both liked on the weekend. The second meeting was as successful as the first. We talked for hours. In short, we became friends and the bond steadily grew. We were seldom apart for more than a few days. If we couldn’t get together, we talked on the phone. It just so happened that I got the flu one day and felt so poor that I couldn’t get out of bed to take care of or feed myself. My nurse friend was ready to come over right away. I didn’t have to ask. She got me through a tough time. I don’t know what I would have done without her. People can be so giving. I thank goodness for the existence of friends.

Shortly thereafter, I got well and wanted to buy the nurse a thank you gift for what she had so willingly done. I am sure she didn’t expect it, but nevertheless I sought something nice and had several choices. It could be perfume, sweets, compression socks in fun colors (nurses wear them all the time), a key chain with her initial on it, or tickets to a play or another event. I thought of a pretty scarf but nurses wear uniforms and I don’t suppose they can get away with adding accessories. So I went with the compression socks and got three pairs. She was delighted since it was something useful and appropriate. She said that the only fun she can have as to work attire are socks. I hit the nail on the head and got the right present.