Saturday, February 24, 2018

Dish Symphony

We are talking about simple tablescaping, family dinners, conversations at the
table, and all such things at our next mentor meeting. Just for fun, I took some of
my (too) many dishes and made a variety of place settings the night
we mentors had our planning meeting. For inspiration, I suppose.
These dishes are all cheap or gotten at resale shops.
Except for these that were my mother's.
You may gather from these settings that I have soup on
my mind, and especially love blue and white dishes and transferware.
We hope to instill in our girls thoughts of tradition,
simple beauty, and honoring their guests by setting a pretty table.
At least we'll throw it out there! 
Before I put it all away I took a picture.
Some of these plates I only have a couple of, and 
I got them because, well, I could change out dishes often.
I try to set a pretty table for our meal each night; I know
the Gardener appreciates it, though it seems a rarity anymore.
Each plate is like a piece of art!

Sunday, February 11, 2018

beauty, bikes and a bonus

First the beauty: Our wonderful DIL dropped this lovely hydrangea off at our door this week to thank us for helping with their move. After working hard for three days I concluded I actually like the process of moving––that is, moving someone else, not me. :-)  We moved so often during the first half of our marriage, I guess I got good at the process. I enjoy the physical activity and the organizing part of it.
The Bike: Before they moved, one day I came by their house and saw this bike at their curb. Certainly an unusual place to leave a bike. It didn't look familiar to me and it stayed there two days. DIL said so many people came by, looked at it, and started searching on their cell phones. Turns out our son had to leave his car for service and rather than get a loaner they suggested he use a bike service. You simply look on your phone for where the nearest bike is, go get it, log in on your phone and off you go. You get charged by the time (I think) and just leave it at your destination for the next person to come along and use. If not used by a certain time, 
the bike company comes and places the bike in a busier location. 

When I was uptown for the trial I saw plenty of these bikes on street corners parked 
with kickstands or in bike racks. On a very windy day, I noticed quite a few lying on their sides.


Friday, February 02, 2018

the end of the story

I've always considered myself a "student of humanity." I love to "people watch"
and figure things out. Any airport layover or waiting for someone at the mall--
the time flies for me as I find people fascinating to observe.
And I found lots of human study in what ended up to be a two-day trial where I sat on the jury.
Once I got over my disappointment at being seated,
I found everything about the process fascinating.
Everyone in the courtroom watched us closely, wondering, I'm sure,
what we were thinking and considering about the outcome. 
In general my mind easily wanders, but not during this experience. It was riveting
and I had no trouble remembering most all of what I heard and saw.
I nodded off once, when we watched a 45 minute search for evidence filmed from
a camera on the officer's head. Sorting through a large basket of laundry got
monotonous. I wasn't the only one dozing in the warm courtroom. 
The defendant himself's snoring could be heard once when he fell asleep. 
And the bailiff in his corner, was asleep when the ADA needed him 
to show us evidence. He hopped to it quickly
and there was a quiet ripple of laughter as he shook himself awake.
The same bailiff or deputy as he called himself was a pretty funny
guy as he led us to and from the jury box, all lined up according to our number, 
in silent single file like a mama duck with her ducklings.
It was so hard not to talk amongst ourselves about the case until given 
the official word to deliberate.
I felt a strong sense of responsibility, and that I was having a part in 
affecting the future of the defendant. I prayed for wisdom.
But it was a pretty straight forward case with overwhelming evidence of guilt so the
decision was not hard. There was some deliberation on a minor charge,  
and of course a discussion of what "beyond reasonable doubt" means. 
"Reasonable" was the word that helped me.

After all was finished, the judge came to the jury room to thank us.
She was a wonderful judge and very professional, but when she talked to us
after the trial, she was down to earth, answering all our questions about
the defendant and the system in general. The experience affected me a lot, 
and in the end, as often is the case, I'm thankful I had the opportunity.

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