Blog, SoCS

SoCS – What Once Was

Linda Hill has just completed another year of SoCS! Congratulations and thank you for all your hard work making these prompts available to all of us. I wish you and your family a happy and healthy New Year, Linda. Want to join in on SoCS? Head over to Linda’s blog to get the scoop on how to participate.

Your Friday prompt for Stream of Consciousness Saturday is “new/knew.’” Use one, use both, use them any way you like. Bonus points if you use both. Enjoy!

Thursday, before we left Charleston, we decided to drive by the location where my husband’s mother had her condo. First a little background.

Mom lived in an area known as West Ashley in Charleston. This place brought her the greatest joy and the most pain of her life. When she moved back into Charleston, she chose and decorated her condo with pride, having no way of knowing what would lie ahead. She loved to entertain and we visited her there often.

Charleston itself is only 3ft above sea level. Stormwater runoff and drainage has always been a challenge, especially considering how much the city has grown in recent years. (It is estimated 33 people per day move to Charleston.) Add to that the fact the city is surrounded by bodies of water, well, the flooding potential is great.

Things went well for years. Then new subdivisions were built behind Mom’s subdivision. So many houses, condos, etc., all to support the increased demand for housing. Was the drainage implemented by the city’s urban planners designed correctly and was it adequate?

One night, they went to bed, and the next morning woke to find at least a foot of water throughout the condo. This was the first of four floods she experienced and this one was the least impactful.

All in all, Mom survived four floods on her property. Each time the damage was worse, and the losses more. They had to be rescued at least once by the fire department. The flood waters rose quickly. Every time it rained, she paced the floor wringing her hands in fear. The high water mark was 36 inches from the floor.

When the condos were new, I wonder if someone anticipated the future and was hushed or if they kept their concerns to themselves. I wonder if the city planners knew when they approved the inadequate drainage and authorized new construction in such a low lying area what the flooding potential was.

These floods broke her. I have vivid memories of sitting in her front yard in lawn chairs while a lifetime of belongings were paraded out in front of her, an 84 year old woman, for her to approve them being thrown into a dumpster.  Very little of her belongings could be salvaged. Flood waters are not clear water, they are dangerous and contaminated water often containing gas and diesel, raw sewage, bacteria, and pesticides. It was heartbreaking.

Eventually after years and years of fighting, FEMA and the city bought all the properties and demolished them – it was not enough money to find a new place to move, though.  Mom got her settlement the month she passed away. A sad end to a long and heartbreaking fight.

Now, other than the broken lamppost and the abandoned electrical boxes, you would never know anyone ever lived there.





Blog, SoCS

SoCS – Snuggle Time

Here’s hoping the weather has been kind to Linda and her family. Even during the threat of cold weather, she found time to give us our weekly prompt. Want to join in on SoCS? Head over to Linda’s blog to get the scoop on how to participate.

Your Friday prompt for Stream of Consciousness Saturday is “cozy.’” Use it any way you like. Have fun! 

We woke to a balmy 6° F (-14° C) this morning. We are bundled up on the couch drinking coffee like the old fogeys we are. Our family in Florida woke to 30° F (-1° C) so you can say the polar blast has made it to the east coast.

Last night we left all the faucets dripping so the pipes would not freeze. Reminds me of the days I lived in Alaska and Maine. In Alaska most places had head bolt heater plugins so cars would start in the morning. At least we have not reached that degree of cold. My friend who still lives there said they had 50” of new snow in the last two weeks. Snow is a good insulator, though.

Yesterday I washed all the afghans in preparation for Christmas day. It is going to be cold here and a house built on slab does you no favors when the weather is this cold. I can see everyone curled up on the chair of their choice, under a freshly laundered afghan. I have plenty of hot cocoa, coffee, and tea to keep us all warm inside. What a cozy Christmas we will have.

After coffee, I will have some breakfast and start preparing desserts and snacks. Blonde brownies, chocolate chip cookies, and blueberry cheesecake. Yesterday I made Chex mix. Tomorrow morning I will make a double batch of sausage balls. What is a cozy Christmas without snacks to munch on?

I still have a few gifts to wrap and then it will be time to settle in.

For whatever and however you celebrate, I send you wishes of peace, happiness, and love that endures the ages.


Blog, SoCS

SoCS – It Figures

Sending good wishes to Alex and to Linda. Here’s hoping he is feeling better. Want to join in on SoCS? Head over to Linda’s blog to get the scoop on how to participate.

Your Friday prompt for Stream of Consciousness Saturday is “dict.” Find a word that contains “dict” and use it in your post. Have fun!

I should have known. By my age you learn about your body and how it reacts. We learn what our tolerances are. It serves us well. For example, I know I have an intense reaction to antihistamines and decongestants. They make me sleep for hours. But let me back up.

Thursday I went to the ortho. My left knee is bone on bone. Arthritis has done a number on the soft tissue. I will be looking at knee replacement down the road. However, there are protocols to try before surgery.

The first is cortisone (steroids) injections in the knee. Usually a total of three over the course of a year. The second is an injection of a gel-like substance that provides a cushion to the knee. That option generally follows the cortisone routine. Then lastly, knee replacement.

So, long story short (you’re welcome), Thursday around noon I had the first steroid injection. Easy peasey. I did as they suggested and took it easy all day. By Friday morning, the pain in my knee was almost non-existent. It’s a miracle I tell you!

Last night we had friends over and we had a nice evening just chatting and catching up with each other. When they left my face felt hot and I was flush and my face was burning. I thought it was the wine as I do not drink frequently. Well, I was wrong!

I was having a reaction to the cortisone injection. PREDICTABLE! After consulting Dr. Google, I decided to take an antihistamine and apply cold compresses to my face. It is the only thing that helps ease the discomfort. This most likely means the end of the road for me and cortisone. Back to the drawing board.

Last night I slept propped up on the recliner with cold compresses on my face. This morning my cheeks are still red and burning. This reaction usually passes within 3 to 4 days so hopefully that is the case.

I keep conjuring up an image of the Queen of Hearts shouting “OFF WITH HER LEG!”

Blog, SoCS

SoCS – Buongiorno!

Linda mentions the wisdom that comes with coffee, so I decided to have one cup before tackling this post. Amble over to Linda’s blog to get the scoop on how to participate in SoCS.

Your Friday prompt for Stream of Consciousness Saturday is “on your/my plate.” Use it any way you’d like. Have fun!

Thanksgiving is over. We did not cook this year with the exception of an old fashioned lemon curd pound cake (which took as long to make as cooking a turkey) and some hors d’oeuvres hubby made. There was so much food. Nothing was left on my plate but I was disciplined enough to resist the urge to go back for seconds.

In our family, we start talking about the next meal or the next gathering before we finish the current one. If we are not eating food or sharing pictures of food we are talking about food.

So this has me thinking about Christmas. What to cook for Christmas. There is always the tradition of ham or turkey which sounds great since we had no leftovers to enjoy this year. I thought about a nice roasting chicken since there will only be five of us. Maybe Cornish game hens but they are not always available. Then it hit me. Maybe I will dig through the archives and make a French Canadian Tourtière pie.

I wonder what my grandchildren would think? A meat pie? I am sure nothing like that has ever crossed their table. I asked my son of he liked them as a kid (they were a Christmas staple when we lived in Maine). He said he LOVED them. Maybe I could sell the idea if I also made Whoopie Pies – another Maine staple although this falls in the dessert category.

So here I am already thinking about what will be on my plate Christmas day. What about you? Do you have all your upcoming holiday meals planned out? Do you ever break with tradition?

Blog, SoCS

SoCS – A Word Please

Linda has given us the most difficult challenge today. I am still not quite sure how I am going to handle this one. If you want to join in, head over to Linda’s and get the scoop on the rules. Here’s the subject for the day.

Your Friday prompt for Stream of Consciousness Saturday is “your favorite word.” Decide on your favorite word and use it in your post any way you’d like. Enjoy!

Asking me to choose my favorite word is like asking me which one of my children I love the most. And of course the most obvious parental response to that question is “I love you the same but differently.” Children never buy that response.

My head has been spinning since I read the prompt last evening. What word among all the words in the world would I choose? I have friends that choose a word for the year every January. I cannot even do that!

The more I pondered the question, I found myself drifting into memories I had associated with different words. Good memories. Cherished memories. And finally I settled on my word.


Odd word to choose I suppose, but the memory I share with the word is close to my heart. 

I remember sitting on my paternal grandfather’s knee when he taught me to spell Mississippi.

“M I crooked letter crooked letter I crooked letter crooked letter I humpback humpback I.”

And there you have it. Just a small example of the way my brain works on a cloudy Saturday morning. Have a great weekend everyone.