Welcome to the Misadventures of Widowhood blog!

In January of 2012 my soul mate of 42 years passed away after nearly 12 years of living with severe disabilities due to a stroke. I survived the first year after Don’s death doing what most widows do---trying to make sense of my world turned upside down. The pain and heartache of loss, my dark humor, my sweetest memories and, yes, even my pity parties are well documented in this blog.

Now that I’m a "seasoned widow" the focus of my writing has changed. I’m still a widow looking through that lens but I’m also a woman searching for contentment, friends and a voice in my restless world. Some people say I have a quirky sense of humor that shows up from time to time in this blog. Others say I make some keen observations about life and growing older. I say I just write about whatever passes through my days---the good, bad and the ugly. Comments welcome and encouraged. Let's get a dialogue going! Jean

Sunday, July 12, 2015

The Farmers Market and Brunch with the Guys



Saturday morning I went to the farmers market for the first time this season and I was disappointed to learn I missed peony season. The elderly “flower guy” at the market said he sold over 4,000 blooms this year including those he sold to event planners. Now, he’s got sunflowers but I didn’t buy any because I forgot to bring a container of water. Boohoo! I especially love having flowers in the house the day after my house cleaner has been here. Going down vendors’ row, I sampled Gouda goat cheese, coffee and cookies and bought cucumbers, red raspberries, lettuce and tomatoes. Then, to feed my carbs-starved side, I bought pretzel rolls and cranberry-walnut bread---mostly for the freezer. I also came home with to-die-for walnut and chocolate bread pudding. I collect bread pudding recipes---over 100 to date---but I’ve never seen it for sale at the farmers market and it was worth every bit of the $4.00 for a four inch square. I almost bought a smoked bone as big as Levi and I would have had I not remembered he had nine teeth pulled last week. He still needs to be on soft, canned dog food until his recheck next week. I hate that stuff! I’m so used to him being a free-feeder with dry food available 24/7 that I’m afraid I’ll forget to feed him.

The farmers market had its usual color---the street performers with their open instruments cases begging people to throw in money, the church ladies selling jam, the librarians pushing summer programs, dogs and baby strollers (plus dogs in strollers), and the venders selling home-made Cracker-Jack, cheese, chocolate, jerky, plants, honey and, of course, every kind of vegetable and fruit grown within a 100 mile radius, which is the rule for calling things “locally grown.” Darn, I just remembered I should have bought some honey! If you eat a little locally harvested honey every day you can build up an immunity to your plant-based allergies. Or so they say. I haven’t tested that theory yet.

After the market I went to the Breakfast Only Café. They only have three tables for a single diner and I was given the one in the far counter where I had a perfect view of all the action. But instead of people-watching I took up eavesdropping and listened to the conversation of four teens sitting within touching distance. They were in town for a basketball tournament and didn’t know each other well, if at all. Nice young guys, three with dreadlocks and wearing uniforms from different parts of the state and one local kid who seemed to be in charge of showing the other three around town. They talked respectfully about teachers, girls, basketball camps, the white-to-black ratio at their schools and some big-wig coach who likes to walk around in his just underpants. They passed around their cell phones to show off photos of the girls they date or like. I'm not exactly sure if you can see a blush on a black kid's face but I'm pretty one of them was doing just that during the 'girl' talk. While sneaking a peek at their cell phone photos, I glances out at the other diners and was instantly jealous of a guy wearing a “Soft Kitty” t-shirt. If you know what that is, you’ll know how silly a non-nerd woman of my age would look wearing one. It’s the only thing holding me back from acquiring one.

On the way home I was listening to a NPR Public Radio talk show and they were discussing how the Jewish community is starting to speak out against the hatred towards Muslims in America. The Jewish guest said, “If the Holocaust taught us anything it taught us that if we don’t stand up against hatred of other ethnic or religious groups then sooner or later that hatred is going to come after you.” Isn’t that a basket full of words to think about. They also talked about the Muslims who took up a sizable collection to help rebuild the black church that burned down last week. Building bridges with love and respect, they said. “Na Na Na Na, Na Na Na Na, Hey Hey-ey Goodbye.” If you saw the news this week, you’ll understand that reference and why it fits into a discussion of building bridges with love and respect in America. But I digress.

Changing Topics: The first batch of nine things I brought to the online auction house closed this week. They sold for probably half of what I’d have gotten on e-Bay. But it’s so much easier and quicker than e-Bay that I can live with that. My next batch of 38 items will close on Wednesday which should tell me more. That first batch was live over the 4th of July so that may have had a negative effect on the bidding. If not, I’ll still have to e-Bay a few of the higher ticket stuff.

The coming week will be a busy one. It includes seeing the King Tut Exhibit in town, taking the dog back to the vet, going to a Write and Share Meetup, taking another load to the auction house, going with my niece to find the rest of our ancestors’ grave sites and meeting with my Movie and Lunch Club. ©



12 comments:

  1. You have such an active, live life. It would kill me, but it seems really good for you! Remember to take pictures of the cemetery sign and the headstones to put in with your genealogy. A 100 years from now, it might make it easier for other descendants to find when they are searching.

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    1. That's a good idea about taking a photo of the cemetery signs. I've already put in my book photos and the plot descriptions of the stones I found at Grave Finder. But a few of the smaller places we are going this week haven't been documented online yet. It's so much fun to connect with you on this topic because you really understand the thrill of the hunt, the research and the satisfaction of connecting back in time.

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  2. I love a good farmers market. A wonderful way to spend a morning or afternoon. I always buy too much and then have to hurry and use everything up before it goes bad. Oh well.

    Have a fabulous day. ☺

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    1. I wish we had afternoon farmers markets around here. Ours all close down at noon. It's hard no to buy too much.

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  3. I'm back to reading your blog! Our Farmer's Market is til 1:30 and is just 5 blocks from the condo ... I'm looking forward to having my knees be able to walk me there! The whole reason we bought this place AND the place in Maui was because they are both WALKABLE ... and then I can't walk!

    I just started back on my genealogy after my family reunion! Love it!

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    1. Having knee replacements what the best and scariest thing I've ever done for myself. I wish we had more walkable communities where I live. Welcome back!

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  4. Today was the last day for strawberries at my local farmers' market, but I bypassed them in favor of the first raspberries of the season. It may be treason to say this in Maine (where the wild lowbush blueberry is the state fruit), but raspberries are my favorite berries.

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    1. The raspberries I bought were the best I've had in along time! Michigan is proud of our blueberries, too. I don't care where they come from, as long I get them. I buy both every week, all year around.

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  5. I am so jealous that you're going to see the King Tut Exhibit. I've missed it twice when it was in D.C. The first time was many years ago and the last time was about eight years ago. Enjoy!

    I've heard that about honey, too. We used to get raw honey all the time. Don't know why we stopped.

    I think you should get a Soft Kitty t-shirt.

    Interesting about the teenagers. I love eavesdropping in restaurants. I figure if they're talking loud enough for me to hear, it's fair game.

    I loved reading your list of goodies that you bought and tasted at the farmers market. I do love a farmers market. I also have a great love of bread pudding. My mother used to make it. Do you make bread pudding often? Think about sharing your recipes!? :) My cousin made an incredibly delicious one with a hard sauce one time when my brother invited all of us for a family thing. I still haven't managed to get the recipe, but I will.

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    1. It was a great exhibit but I'll write about it for Wednesday night's blog.

      The teens in the restaurant would have had to talk in sign language for me not to hear them. It was if we were sitting at the same talk since there was only a foot between our tables. LOL

      My mom made bread pudding once a week to get rid of stale bread and I used to make it more often when Don was a live than I do now. My favorite recipe is for pumpkin bread pudding with cream instead of milk...to die for. I rarely use a recipe, just make it up with whatever I have around.

      I googled Soft Kitty t-shirts recently and now those ads follow me all over the net. One night I may have to give in to it.

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  6. Hi Jean! I've been away....glad to be back and reading your blog again. Loved your study of the group of teenagers and how positively you portrayed them. Teens get a bad rap so often. Love Farmer's Markets -- we have them almost every day of the week within a 10-15 mile radius. Great stuff! We have a big raspberry patch in our yard, but a terrible crop this year. Lots of theories, but the result is our berry season was a bust. I usually jam or freeze and share a gallons of them!

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    1. On my end of town it's rare that we even see black people much less black teens so I was interested in what they were like. They couldn't have been nicer. I talked to them when they left, too, and one of them had a smile you couldn't help fall in love with.

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