four letter words

Being a dog owner has reduced our vocabulary to four letter words. I hadn't realized this until I had a revealing conversation with another dog owner and they made this confession. The four letter words are: walk, play, poop, good, come, and stop. There are a few three letter words that come up from time to time: bad, dog, car, eat, sit and Bob. Except for "Bob" ,talk to any dog owner and see if these words aren't  the ones used most often.

"Did she poop?". This question, answered in the afirmative can make your day .You are pretty assured that if you leave your pet for the day, the house will be clean when you come back. Answered in the negative, will make you come home early to let the dog out.

Dogs can help your social life. After you have exhausted the what did you use to do question, you can talk about your pet. Everyone who has a pet, has a story. I think I've mentioned our late , great Wally. He's the one who sexually assulted a show poodle and we had to have our insurance company pay some expenses. Then there was Charlie Two who always peed on our daughters husbands shoes and brief case. They got a divorce. Dogs know these things. Did I tell you that one of our small dogs was stolen by a child who really wanted a dog. Thank goodness, his Mom checked his (the dogs) name tag. That was Jake the snake, a dog that my husband says was put together by a committee. We could never decide which combination of breeds he was.

It's never too late to try and increase your vocabulary, your dog is probably smarter than you think.



I live on the 7th hole of a not so fancy golf course and I often watch people playing golf. I looked up the word golf and had learned that the word is an acronym for "Gentlemen Only Ladies Forbiden." Definitely not true today.


When I lived in a high rise, I had windows on two sides and I could watch the running path. At certain times of a day, I could identify certain people by their gaits. I can do that with golf too. I see a really lanky man, with the longest ,skinniest legs, shorts and black socks, playing almost every day. Then there are the men who push their carts ,like it was a baby stroller, while the other half  (sorry, but the font changed and I can't remedy it)

pulls theirs. I also see foursomes where all of the men will have on similar colored shirts. Like a bowling team. I think it was a random decision, because I can't see four men calling each other the night before to see what they are wearing .I love it when I hear someone holler out "FORE". I'll have to look up how that word got to be used for " look out or you'll get a knock on the head with my ball.". It could have been "Heads Up everybody". I did just look it up and basically it does mean look forward and watch out.

A few years ago, our young Grandson was visiting . A ball came close to our house. He ran outside and so proudly picked it up to give to the man who had just played it. We thought it was cute. The man was gracious.


We have had one ball hit our house. No damage, just a clunk. Cricket has to be in the mood to bark when people get too close to the house. You can never tell if it will be a barking day or a day that she doesn't care about who gets close.


We played golf once when we first moved here. Bought clubs at Goodwill. Donated clubs back to Goodwill. We were not so good. But I see a lot of people whose balls just bounce a few feet and I say to anyone around ,"I could do that, if I wanted too".


It's never too late to watch these people having a good time playing this game and be just as happy to sit in my living room and pass judgement on their skills.

Minutes of entertainment

I've mentioned before how I read the Nefesh B Nefesh group email site , and I always find something either amusing or informational on the site. There is always something to learn. There are as many as 15 different entries on each days postings.It can be anything , like where is it best to cash your social security checks, to which cell phone company is better.This latest one may be the strangest yet. Someone wanted to borrow a pair of size (European) 39 shoe.They weren't going to walk in them, only to use for a wedding picture ! ??

Another entry was about their having called the Israeli equivalent of 911 because they had had a kitchen fire. Then they got charged for the visit. The writer was confused. They thought that was what their taxes paid for. And if their taxes didn't pay for the fire department, exactly what did their taxes pay for. Us Americans always want something for nothing.

I learned that NBN will pay for the taxi for new Olim (that is what the people coming to Israel as new citizens are called) to take them directly to their new home,from the airport, with all of their luggage.The question was, should they have tipped the cabby. They were told not to bother because the cab driver has already helped himself.

I learn so much reading this email site.

It's never too late to hope that some day I get to use all of this information I am picking up.


I think that all of us living in paradise should feel really smart that we moved here. We should feel this way because when we hear the weather reports from our old home towns and the temperatures are in single digets,we know we were right to make this move. Who wants to be so cold? Who is young enough to shovel snow anymore. We used kid power or wife power when we lived in the midwest. Now, sweeping sand is a nice activity.

This week end we had family from the east coast ( not Miami) visiting. They sat and basked in the sun. They were happy to do only that. Then we really gave them a treat. They watched a sunset over the gulf. When we turned around, there was a full moon. How cool was that. All of this for free entertainment. How great is that. Our family asked us if we go to the beach and watch the sunset a lot. I had to admit, that we think about doing this, but unless we have visitors, we seldom do. We have to change that. Here is a beautiful, free natural show and we don't take advantage of it enough. I am going to go to the beach more often.

Is it too late to make another new years resolution ? Put visiting the beach for a sunset on the list.

Maybe we should have the whole month of Janurary to refine and add to our resolutions. There are a few more things that I want to add to the list. Like to really start a diet again on Monday. It's never too late to keep adding things that make you happy to your list,even  though you will probably wake up Monday and decide to  change your original  list to say that you should start your diet on Tuesday.


Because we had a house full of relatives, we asked a friend to keep Cricket for a few days. I had trouble sleeping the first night she was away. I woke up at 3 AM. I think it was because Cricket wasn't sleeping at my feet and she didn't give me her famous licks when she would have noticed that I was awake.

Then every time I came into the house for these two days, she wasn't here to greet me. It didn't feel right .

Over the years, when a family pet has died, we would debate whether or not to replace the pet. We would try to be petless for a week or so, and then we couldn't not get another pet. The man of the house would be the decider in choosing a dog. I don't know why that was, but he always seemed to make wise choices because we've had some good pets.

I have always wanted a dog to follow me home. It never happened. Once a large dog came to our door when it was pouring outside. We let him in and called animal control. He had a chip, so they were able to find his owner and he was returned.That doesn't count as a dog following me home.

I called the friend who is keeping Cricket and asked them to bring Cricket home early while the family is still here, we really miss her. When we go away and leave Cricket, I don't miss her. I think that I do this time because we are in our home and for us , home includes having Cricket with us.

It's never too late to admit that we are just softies when it come to our pets.

"P"'s win

I like words that start with the letter "P". Pretty,pumpkin,perplexed,pleasure,poppies,presume,petunia,private. You have to put your lips together to get the sound out. You might even spittle a little when you say the word. If you speak into a microphone, the sound can pop a little. Those "P" words can take on a personality. At a public function, you can wait for the person at the mic to assult your ears when they use a "P" word.

The closest we got to naming a dog with a "P" was Spot.First you say the "s" sound then you pop the "Pot".  SSSPot. Spot

In my Hebrew class, the letter for "P" is similar to the letter used for "Fey". Pey and Fey. A dot changes the game. That is confusing for someone like me who has a problem with languages.

It's fun to play with words,but I think the "P's" win. I can think of a lot of words that I won't mention , that start with "P". Please,puppy,pennies,pump, pervert,pansy.I can just keep going. It's never too late to look for some more words that make you smile.


When we lived in Chicago and our front door was on Michigan Avenue, we would see grown men, wearing business suits, carrying these purple-ish colored shopping bags with the American Girl logo on them. They were probably Dad's, from out of town. It was cute. Lucky little girls. The American Girl doll is not cheap and the trimmings that go with them are expensive. To compilcate things even more for the indulgent parent or Grandparent is that there is this fantasy store that serves lunch to these little girls and their dolls, and sells merchandise for the dolls.  Reservation only. I've seen the little girls while they stand in line to get into the restaurant. They are dressed in their best, as is their doll.

I was reminded of the dolls only because I saw an article in the paper that a New York City Public Branch Library had one American Girl doll that was being borrowed with a library card. How exciting for a little girl in an economically challenged neighborhood to be able to play with this special doll and make believe for two weeks. It must be so hard to have to return it. The Librarian didn't say anything about over due doll or damaged doll, so it must be working. It's never too late to wish that some kind person will come forward and donate another doll to a good cause. Maybe even the American Girl Company.

First plug it in...

I really don't like to read  instruction manuals or directions. That can be a real disadvantage for me. I just seem to be in such a hurry to get to the product and start working it, that I am too impatient. I am visual so I look at the diagram and start working with the pieces that are included. This works for putting together a swing set or a table with 4 legs, but it just doesn't work with many of the electronics I have . I really should read the manual. My method is to push every button until something happens. Then, because nothing is working, I am forced to read. That can also be infuriating. Sometimes the grammer is crazy, especially when the directions are from another country. The multiple directions, in very small print are confusing to someone who wears bifocals. I have had to call the 800 number for help. That has usually been a good experience. I don't know how the people on the other end of my phone know how to help me. They are brilliant. Just imagine how many weirdo's they have to deal with, and little old ladies who keep saying "would you repeat that a little more slowly". Before I make my call, I know the drill. Check that the appliance is pluged in, or the battery is charged. I've recieved help ,via the phone, for my TV, telephone, computer, and my first Kindle. I sometimes have to ask for someone that I can understand, but I am polite about it. And I love to talk to someone in India. They speak English with all of the emphasis on the wrong syllables. It's an international education for me. So it is never too late to take the time to read instructions, it might save me a phone call.


Today, my violin teacher told me that she had her 50th birthday over the week end. I think being 50 is wonderful. If I could go back to an age, it would be 50. Our youngest child would be 20 and our oldest would be 30. At least 2 would be out of college. We had two incomes, 2 cars, 2 houses. In retrospect, life was good. But, life is good here in Paradise. Retired, one house, no tuition to pay ,one car,and no snow to shovel. We have the same 4 kids, they have partners,they have children, they have their own lives. We did good and they are making us proud.

Fifty was good because in my mind that was mid life. If you plan to live to 100, that is mid life. Now 28 years later, I'm closer to the 100 mark and I'm not that sure of what is coming. It's a little intimadating but what an adventure. So maybe I have to put it in perspective. Fifty was good, but so is 78 good, and it's never too late to think of the birthday party I will have at 100. And who knows, I have an aunt who is 104.!

Call first

I figured out why we get along so well with our children.We never talk substance. We love each other, we respect each other, but we never tread on each others space. It's like we are all dervishes bobbing in our own orbits , but not falling into each other. We can count on each other to be there for us and for each other, but when we don't need anything special, we walk our own walk. That's comforting. There when we need it, not to worry about them when nothing special is going on. We used to kid that we would change the locks when they left home. We did better. We moved to the high rise.The door man had to announce them. Cool.

One of the things we did when we were moving is that when ever one of the four came over, we sent them home with a box. It didn't make any difference what was in the box. We just wanted to get rid of the contents .We have another thing that we are still doing. When ever we wonder where something is that we may have left behind , we say "it must be in Robin's basement".That could be boxes of slides that we haven't looked at in years, or a collection of old high school papers. The other day I was wondering what happened to a painting we had purchased and suddenly remembered it wasn't here with us. Bob reassured me that it must be in Robin's basement !

It's never too late to have some place to send your stuff and have willing kids who will put up with taking it.


A friend gave me a really cool book for my birthday. It is "The Little Big Book of Life". I'm up to a reading about Feng Shui and I think that I am on the right track. The essay says that a clean kitchen is essential because it represents financial well being. (I wish) Particularly a clean stove. It just happened that I used the self clean feature on my stove last night. I will wait for the check to be in the mail box now that I am assured financial well being.

I am reminded that I should always keep the bathroom door closed and the toilet seat down so that my luck and money don't go down the drain. Dang. I've fallen short here. Especially since I'm the one who doesn't care if the seat is up. I can change. Chimes are recommended because pleasing sounds create new opportunities. I don't happen to like chimes. That constant noise bothers me. I would just like to hear the leaves rustle with the wind. That seems more in harmony to me. I do agree with the essay in that a cluttered and disorganized home can effect how you feel when you leave your house.

There is a Chinese Proverb that says "if you want to encourage change in your life, move 27 things in your house." I love to move furniture around and rearrange books. It's never too late to now have an excuse to do so.

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Latest comments

01.12 | 14:15

Safe travels. See you soon. sally

04.07 | 12:10

I read the last page first too. It’s a family curse.

22.05 | 12:38

so glad youre here mom!

29.08 | 17:45

Don't quite know how this got to me but it was on the top line of my computer (not in email) But I really enjoyed it. I truly admire you.