Friday, April 29, 2022

A Story


Once upon a time, in a galaxy far, far away . . . . .

 I’ve had an iPhone 8 for many years now and 9 or so months ago, it started to act up.  A problem that required that I shut the phone completely off, wait 30 seconds and turn it back on so things would work.  Ugh.  This was a royal pain in the patootie.

My phone carrier, AT&T, had been offering me the option of an upgrade for some time.  I had gotten the iPhone 8 from ATT, so I decided to take advantage of the offer(s).  Fine.  Took the most recent notice from ATT, went to the webpage and chose a phone, ticked whatever boxes and poof!

all was done.  The phone arrived two days later just like magic.

Next step – transfer data from old phone to new phone.  Okay.  It’s pretty easy.  The phones “talked” to one another and abracadabra, it was done.  New phone with all the right stuff!  Cool!

Then, over the next couple days, I noticed the new phone got hot – as in uncomfortably very warm hot – anytime I used it for more than a few minutes.  Hmmmmm – this can’t be good.

Now, brief comment:  I am your basic little old lady.  I don’t play humongous intricate games with many people on the phone; I don’t down load movies or tv shows on the phone.  I do play solitaire or spider or a few other card-type games in the evening.  And, yes, I do play for 30 minutes or so at a time.  Still, the old phone didn’t get hot, hmmmmm …..

So I called the ATT service tech and explained the situation/problem. 

No problem
, sez he, we’ll just send you a new phone and you can return the one that gets hot. 

Good.  Of course it took being transferred, and retelling the history and answering a bazillion questions, but eventually it all got done.  I’m thinking I only spent an hour dealing with the whole situation, okay,   maybe two hours, but seemed all was going smoothly.  Happy customer.

The new phone would ship the same day and, taaa-daaa, it arrived Thursday (yes, yesterday).

Now, since I already did the transfer of information previously, I had a pretty good understanding how to do it again.  Plus, the phone(s) prompt you as the process goes along.  I started the transfer of data hot phone to newer phone.  All went well ….. and then…..


I repeated the process four (4) (as in 1, 2, 3, 4) times.  Tried to do a manual transfer twice.  Same thing happened. 

And so, I called ATT’s tech services again.  

After a brief argument with the talking computer, I finally spoke with ‘John’.  Explained what all had been going on and the current problem – can’t transfer data one phone to the other.

No problemo, sez John, I’m the best service tech there is.  We’ll just use the mobile transfer app and that will do it all for you.

And so he walked me through doing this, that, and the other thing.  Wahoo, the phones started the data transfer.  Okay, it’ll take a few minutes so I’ll hang up now.  Goodbye.

The phone(s) finished doing whatever.  I checked the new phone.  Hmmmmm – none of my apps transferred, none of my emails, none of my texts.  In fact, the only things that transferred were my contact list and my photos. 

I called the ATT tech services back.

This time I spoke with ‘Matt’.  Well, sez he, are both your phones completely updated? 

Well, the “hot” phone was but the brand new just out of the box phone was not.  He told me to start the update and that he’d call me back in 15 minutes to see if we could transfer the data.  Do you promise to call back, was my only comment,

because my stress and frustration levels are so high right now . .   I just might reach through the phone and . . .

Oh yes, oh yes, absolutely I’ll call.  Fine.  Update finished.  I waited 15 minutes . . . 1 hour . . . 2 hours.  No call back.

Now I have two new phones and neither work.  Goodie.

Then, I discovered that there is an ATT store in El Campo, a mere 20 miles away.  Today I went to the ATT store and the manager (an intelligent, delightful, helpful, marvelous, woman who understands customer service) fixed the problem for me.

The End.


The moral of the story is – always find a live human person, especially one that is sitting right across a small table from you, to help solve a problem before you are ready to commit murder and mayhem.


29 Apr 2022

Tuesday, April 19, 2022

Happy Days


Easter, Passover, Ramadan, Hinami, Nowruz, Holi, Thank all the Gods and Goddesses it’s Spring (or whatever you may have celebrated this month) – may it be all you wished for.

As for myself, I set out my bunnies and baskets filled with colored eggs which for me brings back fun memories of years past.

Granddaughter #1 and her fiancée came over for a two day visit. 

It was wonderful, great, nice to have them here.  Plus, soon-to-be-officially grandson #3 did three big projects for me.  He installed a cat door (now the Demon Duo can go out to the screened in porch without my assistance).

Finished sealing the front porch – reaching easily the area I couldn’t unless I employed a ladder (not my first choice – ladder, me, paint can in one hand, brush in other, no extra hand to steady myself or hold on to the porch).  And, he sunk a pond form partway into the ground.  No – not having a pond. 

I’ve had several ponds over the years.  They can be nice, soothing even, attractive and a whole great big bunch of work.  Thankyouverymuch – I’m done with that.  No, it’s my version of a raised flower bed.  This one will hold iris, daylilies, amaryllis bulbs, rain lilies, and narcissus.  I’ve already punched a bazillion holes in the bottom and now just have to fill it with dirt.

I recently offered to take on finding programs and workshops for Hesed House of Wharton (our community outreach organization).  Saturday was the first one – Rainwater Harvesting.  And, just in case you’re interested . . . . . Collecting rainwater reduces demand on municipal water resources, makes and efficient use of water, reduces erosion, flooding and water contamination, and saves money.  My speaker showed how individuals can use something as simple as a trashcan, or

as fancy as this

She also talked about rain gardens – a bioretention area.  What?  That translates to a low place in your yard.  Why?  Well a rain garden gives storm water a place to collect, sink in, and replenish the ground water.  You can put in native, water loving plants making it an attractive area (rather than a low, wet place in the yard) and all the rain is helping your yard rather than running off to the gutter.

This being our first ‘Earth Lab’ program, we had an OK turnout – not as many as I hoped for but not as few as I feared. 

My yard is finally beginning to look like M Y  Y A R D.  Many things blooming –

Scabiosa or pincushion flower

Amaryllis – these came from my mother’s house and from her mother’s house.

 Miss Jekyll White or Love in a Mist Flower


Lady of Shallot

Many wildflowers all abloom in my wild flower bed but I won’t bore you with more flower pictures.  Of my two tomato plants, one has many tomatoes!  The other is just now putting out flowers.  The potatoes and carrots seem to be growing well and all my trees have leafed out.  Well - two haven't but I'm not giving up on them just yet.  Most of the shrub types have put out leaves and have started growing.  

I guess that’s all I know right now.

and, one more because it made me laugh

19 Apr 2022

Monday, April 11, 2022

Saturday and Other Fun Stuff


Saturday our local Farmer’s Market opened.  No vegetables of course, too early even for us but lots of other things . . .


Crafty types.

Canned goods and baked goods.

The boy scouts

were selling very pretty eggs

There were cut flowers

and flowers to plant.

There were chickies

and cascarones.

In case you don’t know - Cascarones are a cross between an Easter egg and a party favor. They are brightly colored eggshells, either hand-painted or dyed, filled with confetti.  You crack them over the heads of friends and family for luck.  I used to make dozens of them every Easter from the time my children were able to hunt for eggs until even now (though I don’t make more than one or two these days). 

These are ones made in past years.

The rest of my weekend was filled with all sorts of fun stuff – like vacuuming and dusting and laundry, oh boy.  Plus I rearranged all the furniture and plants on the back porch.  I’m trying to find the best sun for those that would like the morning but not the afternoon sun.  And I finally managed to get my old stained-glass window hung up. 

Not exactly what I wanted but better than sitting in my closet.

Tis an exciting life I lead here in Wharton.


11 Apr 2022

Wednesday, April 6, 2022



The past couple of weeks have been full ones.  Out of the house by 8am with yard work, projects, errands and such have kept me very busy.

The two weeks my daughter was here were wonderful, marvelous, good, good, weeks.  Mostly we just had time to “hang-out” and that was a huge part of the wonderful.  

We did go to yoga several times.

And, one day we went to the Katy Home and Garden Show.  There were lots of vendors selling doors, windows, ac units, solar panels, kitchen/bathroom remodeling ideas and other home improvement things.  Disappointingly, not too much garden stuff.  There was only one garden shop there with some pretty plants.  And, I was very tempted, however I was strong and managed to come home with only one plant – a type of lavender that, I was assured, will grow here in our hot humid climate.  We’ll see.

There were, maybe, a couple dozen DYI’ers.  Everything from cute little terrariums

To handmade dolls. 

I did think the owners went a bit too far though.  They both wore hospital scrubs with nursery aprons over them and walked around holding a doll as though it were a newborn human baby – wrapped in a blanket, bouncing it in her arms, cooing at it. 

We did a lot of walking around the neighborhood and when I say ‘walking’ I don’t mean casual strolling.  I mean WALKING!  Interesting things to be seen in the country.

This mama was out running errands with the kids.

And, this made me laugh out loud – king of the mountain!  Honestly, I don’t think I’ve ever seen a cow on a hill - okay, on a big mound of dirt.

I painted the front porch.  Well, I sealed the front porch with a clear sealer – sort of the same thing.  Still have a little more to do to finish but it requires me on the ladder with a paint can and brush.  I may have to wait until my granddaughter comes to visit.  Her fiancée is coming with her and I’m making a list of ‘honey-do’s’.

Daughter and I both like English/Australian mysteries so we watched Mystery Road and Winter (Australian) and Whitstable Pearl (English).  Winter and Whitstable Pearl were excellent. 

Mystery Road was okay, good even, once you got past the stoic abrupt leading man.

My daughter left this past Saturday.  I am sad still.

Lookee here!!!

Baby Tomatoes! 

Everything else in the yard is being very slow to come out with leaves, much less flowers.  However, finally my little trees are leafing out (I’ve had firm talks with them.  This year I expect them to grow taller than me!), the roses are starting to set buds, the coneflowers have buds all over, the ferns have come back, and the plumerias are finally starting to show a leaf or two.  The herb garden is growing slowly.  Cool evenings and coolish days have everything moving slowly.  However, with the arrival of April, I think summer is upon us – supposed to be nearly 90 degs today.

I had a bit of a scare and Daryl had a very bad day.  Daryl (one of the Demon Duo) stopped eating, stopped drinking, only slept.  This is bad.  I took him to the kitty doctor where he, Daryl, was VERY UNHAPPY.  First of all, he had to get in the carrier.  Not a favorite thing.  Then, in the car. Where he squalled the whole way to the vet.  When I finally opened the carrier, he stuck his head out, looked around, and sucked right back into the carrier (nope, don’t know this place, not coming out).  We had to turn the carrier up and shake him out.  He doesn’t really like to be touched, specially by strangers.  In came two techies that touched him all over and then, he doesn’t like men and a big man came in the room and touched him all over.  Finally, he had to get an IV of fluid and two shots.  He couldn’t get back in the carrier fast enough.  (and was very quiet on the trip home!) 

All is well now.

Zack was terribly concerned, as you can see below.

(Tired himself out, playing with his mousie.)

Well, that’s pretty much all.  Nothing exciting.  But nothing bad.

I saw this the other day.  Ohhhhhhh . . . . yes a moment . . . . Wasn't 1970 just a year or two ago??

5 Apr 2022