Music on My Mind

From my newest blog, I Sing – You Sing, a cross-post. I Sing – You Sing is a Sing Along – a new and growing collection of songs – the music and the lyrics. Requests are welcome, too. Find your favorite songs all in one convenient location.and sing along.

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My brother is with me today. He stands before me, elbows flexed, head bowed,  fists clenched and both index fingers extended upward. He is ready and his posture tells us so. At the first movement of his hands singing begins. Doe, a deer, a female deer…

We sang that song so many times in those early years, my brother’s voice loud and clear through his conducting – after dinner, at family gatherings, on long car rides and short. It seems as though if we were together, we were singing.

Doe, a deer
A female deer.
Ray a drop of golden sun…


Ah, the memories!

What’s in a Name

Microsoft announced laying off 18,000 employees. Stunned by the number, I started to think about Microsoft’s product line. They really have not produced anything new or innovative in quite some time. Of course, there was the new Windows 8 operating system, something I am so afraid of that I pray nightly my 5-year-old computer lasts at least until the next hopefully better operating system comes along. Then there was their new tablet. What is its name?

As trains of thought go, I suddenly had renewed interest in that newest of tablets. So I googled it to learn more, to find out what made it better, special, different.

I googled “Microsoft Surplus.” I got a lot of hits and I perused the list looking for a description of the Microsoft tablet. Oddly, I could not find any specific information about the tablet itself. I found lots of articles talking about its poor sales and the fact that Microsoft has a huge surplus of those tablets sitting around unwanted. There was no information about its features.

So I went to youtube and looked for tutorials – you know, the kind of youtube video that would demonstrate how to use the Microsoft tablet. Nothing! How could that be?

Then it dawned on me! The tablet has a different name! I had the name wrong! It is not called Surplus; it is Surface.

Surface? The name of a tablet? Why?

Perhaps nobody else can remember the name of that tablet and that alone is why they do not sell and consequently why the whole company is falling apart Those tablets sit around in closets and warehouses waiting for someone to remember the name.

The Surface. Not a winning name for an electronic device. For a kitchen countertop, maybe.

The Surplus


Ernie Exposed

It has been said that Ernie is a myth. Whenever anybody is in our home (besides Sir Braver and me), Ernie hides. Ernie hides, in fact, if people make noise in the hallways or on our balcony, as repairmen may do from time to time. Sometimes Ernie hides under the couch, sometimes behind the drapes, and sometimes under the blanket on our bed. His choice of hiding place depends on how much protection and secrecy he needs for the occasion.

Ernie is camera-shy too. He runs if he sees a camera aimed at him. I do believe he likes the mystique he has created and does not want to shatter the myth that perhaps he does not even exist.

Today, however, Ernie was caught on camera.

I had created a cat toy that even Ernie could not resist. I crocheted a ball and stuffed it with cushy polyester fiberfill. In the center of the ball is a neatly embedded pouch of catnip. Working that catnip into the new toy during the creation process proved to be quite the challenge. Both Bert and Ernie wanted to play now!

On beginning play, the ball was pitched into center field. Both cats scurried to it. Then Bert grabbed hold quickly and marched it away. Ernie followed in close pursuit. Ernie settled down and watched Bert play, patiently waiting his turn. His patience wore then, though, and soon Ernie tackled Bert and took control while Bert sat on the sideline and pouted.

Bert and Ernie continued taking turns until they both got completely tuckered out. Now I hope they sleep through the night. A gal can dream!

Here comes Ernie!

The Cup Runneth Over

I admit it – I have no interest in the World Cup. None. Zilch. Nada. Yet the frenzy surrounds me and I know not why.

It is as if soccer moms finally got their moment in time. Somehow they even got soccer dads to rally.

Our condo’s community room has been occupied for days and days and days primarily by one couple who have been totally captivated, and apparently have no cable connection to call their own. They sit on the couch, eyes glued to the TV. I do not think they have eaten or taken a bathroom break in weeks!

At breakfast this morning, the café we enjoy for Sunday brunch was packed with enthusiasts, chairs pulled up to the big screen TV mounted high on the wall. Even the owner was seated in the crowd. No one ate. No one drank. And when something happened on the field, every pair of arms in the place were raised up to the sky, in unison, accompanied by a chorus of elation.

I know Brazil did poorly; it was the cry heard around the world. I know that today is the final exhibition and is being played between Germany and Argentina. Who does one root for? The Gestapo or the SS? I am so confused.

It will be over soon. Then it is back to work, back to the mundane, back to same old/same old. What will Google do?


Twist and Shout

I discovered Internet Radio. There are literally thousands of stations to pick from. It is marvelous! Find one that plays just what you want and voilà! The music of your choice comes through your computer, phone, or other device, loud and clear, and free. There are even simple controls to help you search for just the songs you want, pause at will, even skip the one that you could never stand and still can’t!

The hard part is perusing all those different radio channels and finding what you like. So many choices!

I found AccuRadio. Once there, I can narrow down choices even more. They offer rock music (pick the decade), jazz, opera, even textures (whatever that is), just to name a few.

I want music I know, with lyrics I remember. Then I can sing along, and dance, and have a blast while I burn off lots of calories. And the music I have found on AccuRadio is not bad at all. In fact, I am having a great time.

The problem is I do not remember all the words to songs as well as I used to. I figured out what I need. I need an Internet Radio channel that plays the songs I know and posts the lyrics at the same time. Remember Sing Along with Mitch? That’s it! I wonder if that is still around!

Hey, Bud!

After months of investigating, pondering, and considering followed by weeks of intensive training, studying, and learning, Sir Braver is now a Certified Ombudsman for the State of Oregon! As such, he is an advocate for individuals in long-term care facilities and has already been assigned to two, count ‘em TWO, long-term care facilities. The people in those two facilities now have the best possible ombudsman in their corner.

Congratulations to My Bud!



Kitchen Closed



And no, the 2 parts do not screw together.


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Update:  …24 hours later, the faucet looks like this: