Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Hi everyone!

I've started taking my RE course! YAY!

I've been asking God to give me a sign that I'm making the right move...

I posted a comment on Broker Bryant's (a real estate guru) blog yesterday, and told him I'd be knocking on his door when I get some experience. He responded by asking to me to speak with him before I hang my license anywhere-- he's just a few miles down the road from me. So, I was psyched but guarded because HEY! I have no RE experience on the selling end. I love his business model, being the techie geek that I am.

That was one sign, but I wasn't convinced.

I am a fan of RealTown Real Estate Network on Facebook. A couple of hours after hearing from BB, RealTown sent me a post entitled "Internet Agents Earn More Than Twice Traditional Agents Putting the Right Tools in Place is the Key to Success". Whoa. BB's business model!

That was two.

Today I went grocery shopping and pulled up next to a van at a traffic light that is at the intersection of the road to BB's. It was a Heating and AC company van, and in big red letters on the side it said "CALL BRYANT".

Am I missing something here?

Saturday, February 28, 2009

I have found Redneck Mecca. And it was GOOD!

I had the opportunity to spend a night this week at The Florida Strawberry Festival. It was just like the Harrington Fair except with strawberries. Of course, everyone from Delaware knows that the Harrington Fair is only called the Delaware State Fair by those either a)from above the canal or b)foreigners. And those from above the canal may as well be foreigners because they really belong to Philly and just don't know it.

I got to see Larry Gatlin in concert and it was FANTASTIC! One of my all time favs. I saw them last about 18 years ago, so it was good to see them again. Wonderful entertainers.

As we walked around, I began feeling more and more at home. Plenty of camo, boots, hats with fishing hooks-- the whole shebang. Teenage girls in hot pants and cowboy boots. Yep-- these are my people!

My husband seems to think Brad Paisley's song 'Waitin' on a Woman' was written about him. He says he's always drivin' me or waitin' on me. I don't really see the problem.

He was waiting for me outside the Ladies room at the Festival and was mindin' his own, apparently. A older man walked by him and he thought, "Oh my goodness, that's BOBBY ALLISON"! He greeted him and shook his hand. When I came out, he was on cloud nine! He was ecstatic! I guess waitin' on me ain't so bad after all. He got to meet Nascar Royalty. All because of me and my bladder. Thank you. Thank you very much.

We kept walking around-- lots of food stalls and I didn't eat ONE thing. I was thrilled with myself. The choice wasn't great. Anything you wanted-- on a stick. Fried bologna -- on a stick. Strawberry Shortcake-- on a stick. Anything you wanted, it'd have a stick stuck in it.

I wanted to go to the livestock barns because I miss home and the animals. My husband took this opportunity to remind of one of my less finer moments in life.

See, it went like this:

We were at the Fair in about 1981. I saw the Swine Barn and said, 'Oh! Swine! I want to see them!' I didn't really notice the look of disgust on my husbands face. Didn't matter-- I was on a mission.

We went through, me pushin' the stroller. Trooper that Darrell was, he followed along. About halfway through the barn, which was full of nuthin' but pigs, I turned to him and said, 'Where are the birds?'

He said, 'What birds?' I said, 'The swans. Where are they?'

He almost fell in the mud. He laughed the rest of the way through the barn, which was long and had a door only at the ends-- no other way out.

Swans. Swine. Isn't that the plural? Hey, what do I know? I'm from Georgetown. A city girl.

We didn't go in the barns.

Anyway, after that we went to the concert. We sat there for a few minutes, and then a group of people sat down right smack behind us. Darrell says, 'Mr. Allison, are you following me?'

Yep, Bobby again. They talked for probably a half hour and Darrell was over the moon. They talked racing and family and everything. He had a great time.

I bought a half-flat of strawberries because-- hey! The are ripe now where I live! :-) Today I was hulling what was left of them and found an interesting one.

Vick, this is one is for you :-)

Katie and I named it the 'Butt Berry'. It reminded me of a little thing we came up with years ago? Remember "AITF"? This berry reminded me of that.

Sorry folks, inside joke, never to be explained in public. Vick understands. :-) We ain't talkin' about All In The Family either.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Okay, this one might be a little off-color :-) I apologize in advance.

Hubby had an appointment with his urologist today. He's going to switch doctors because he doesn't feel 'comfortable' with this doc. He's foreign and if you don't speak English or redneck, my boy just don't git it.

I was quizzing him on his visit because -- hey!-- that's just what I do. It's my job.

He wasn't very forthcoming with information, so I pressed. And pressed.

"What did he say?" "What did your xray show?" etc-- basic stuff.

Well, it seems he was supposed to take his kidney stones in so they could analyze them to see what caused them. Did he have his stones with him?

Of course not! That's because I took 'em 30 years ago when we got married!

More quizzes... finally, I ask the BIG question---

"Did he stick his finger up your butt?"

He said, WITH FEELING, "NO! I want an American sticking his finger up my butt!"

I nearly peed the bed.
I am hopelessly bilingual--

plain American and Redneck, that is.

My friend Annie is a New York 'Rican (her term) and she was trying (key word here) to teach me some Spanish. She said it was from a Spanish song. How bad can that be?

I practiced and practiced and she repeated and repeated. At the time, I thought she was giggling at my atrocious pronunciation. No, something more sinister was at hand.

On my way home that night, I was in the elevator, practicing again so I could impress my husband. Annie was with me, smiling like a proud mama --- or so I thought.

With us were several other Spanish speaking ladies. As I was practicing, one of them looked startled and said to Annie, "Did she say 'yada yada'? (I KNOW how to say 'yada yada', I'm trying to be polite.)

Annie started giggling and nodded. I said, smartly, "Annie's teaching me Spanish!"

The elevator almost went straight to the ground floor because these girls just lost it. It got worse when I asked what it REALLY meant.

I don't know whether or not to believe them now, but they said it loosely meant 'suck the lollipop'.

Hey, it's candy-- how bad can it be?
Phrases that make me fighting MAD.

When are you due? (unless you really are.)

You should have reminded me. (HUH? ME?? I'm not the boss of you.)

Are you watching CSI AGAIN? (You bet. And it's a marathon, so get over it.)

You make a better door than you do a window. ('Nuff said.)

I didn't leave that toilet seat up. (Ratchet times 10 if he's the only male in the house--- times 20 if it caused you to go for a midnight derriere skinny dip.)

You want to go to Wal-mart again? (No, I'll ask the food fairy to make a special delivery.)

Are you going to wear that out in public? (Shall I just take it off?)

Are you going to put some pants on? (I have to give him that one sometimes because I hate wearing clothes.)

And the biggie:

Are you getting ready to start? (Ratchet that times 100 if it comes from spouse. And it does.)

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

I'm really excited!

I get to go home at the end of May and I'm *so* looking forward to it. I've been home three times since we moved here-- the first time was just three weeks after moving here (to attend Darrell's Dads funeral), another the next year to clean out the house, and then this past October to sell the house.

This is the first time I get to go back as a visitor-- and I'm expecting mixed feelings when I get there. We don't plan to go near the house because it'll be too stressful, but we do plan on stopping in to the The Store in Fabulous Gumboro.

I love the beach and the ocean and miss it so much. We had planned on staying in Salisbury in a hotel, but seven nights is just too long in a hotel room, and no pool. I found a condo at Sea Colony, oceanfront, for $12 a night more than the hotel. I am so pumped! Free HSI too, so I can keep in touch with Facebook and my Lizards.

I was able to get some stuff to take up there this morning and I just can't wait!

Now it feels like a vacation!

Now, to work on my tan-- I'll scare little children if I don't have one. I positively GLOW, I'm so white!

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

I'd like to go on record saying that America has lost it's mind!

The subject of my rant is Reality TV.

I just despise it! I really do.

Do we have nothing better to do than watch other peoples like a train wreck? And how many of them are just over the top?

What happened to books?

What do we have-- Lost, Intervention, Idol, Housewives of All Over the Place, Big Brother etc ad nauseum?

I believe reality TV lost it's focus at the end of AI Season 2. That's when I swore off Reality TV.

Clay was plain robbed.
I be a righter. (NOT)

I'm really having a lot of fun writing this blog!

I hope it's not too boring for you guys to read :-)

A friend back home encouraged me to write, oh, probably for the last 18 years and I never really did anything with it. No ambition, maybe? Or maybe too busy just living. Or maybe disbelief that anyone would want to read what I have to say.

Anyway, I know this isn't funny or thought-provoking, but I just wanted to say thanks.

So, CR, when you read this--- thanks. :-)

My hordes of readers -- my adoring public-- may not thank you, but I do.

I appreciate the encouragement over the years-- I do. I know it's not The Great American Novel, or even a column in The Salisbury Daily Times. But, as a gentleman recently told me, if you spell out the word SOCKS, it is Spanish for 'It Is What It Is'.

And it is :-)
Beckology, because Beckyology just didn't sound right:

Another Facebook note:

Let others know a little more about yourself, re-post this as your name followed by "ology"

What is your salad dressing of choice? **honey mustard-- sweet with a little kick!*

What is your favorite sit-down restaurant? *Goin' Nuts Cafe back home, Macaroni Grill here*

What food could you eat every day for two weeks and not get sick of? *Ice Cream*

What are your pizza toppings of choice? *Pan Pizza with extra cheese and mushrooms unless I'm back home and then it's Grottos with mushrooms*


How many televisions are in your house? * Five. Five too many*

What color cell phone do you have? *silver*


Are you right-handed or left-handed? *right*

Have you ever had anything removed from your body? *Boobies and babies*

What is the last heavy item you lifted? *I helped lift the granite top for my kitchen island, but it broke*

Have you ever been knocked unconscious? *nope, but I've seen stars quite a few times!*


If it were possible, would you want to know the day you were going to die? *yeah- so I can say a proper goodbye*

If you could change your name, what would you change it to? *Hortense*

Number of flip flops do you own? *FL, so more than regular shoes, maybe 12?*

Last person you talked to? *hubby*

Last person you hugged? *hubby*


Season? *Summer -- all 9 months of it*

Holiday? *July 4*

Day of the week? *Wednesday*

Month? *August*


Missing someone? *always*

Mood? *eh*

What are you listening to? *Will and Grace, when I can hear it*

Watching? *Will and Grace*

Worrying about? *My appt with ENT this afternoon. My ear infections keep getting worse and I'm afraid I'll go blind.*


First place you went this morning? *to the bathroom*

What's the last movie you saw? *out-- Get Smart. At home: Sleepless in Seattle*

Do you smile often? *yes, I love to laugh*

Do you always answer your phone? *At home, rarely. I talk on the phone 8 hours a day*

Its four in the morning and you get a text message, who is it? *Amy*

If you could change your eye color what would it be? *Green*

What flavor do you add to your drink at Sonic? *I don't eat fast food or drink sodas*

Do you own a digital camera? *Yes*

Have you ever had a pet fish? *no*

What's on your wish list for your birthday? *A real good tan*

Can you do push ups? *maybe one. Okay, maybe a half of one*

Can you do a chin up? *With these chins? C'mon!*

Does the future make you more nervous or excited? *nervous*

Do you have any saved texts? *no*

Ever been in a car wreck? *yes*

Do you have an accent? *nope*

What is the last song to make you cry? *Not a Day Goes By - Lonestar*

Plans tonight? *dunno, depends on how I feel after the doctor*

Have you ever felt like you hit rock bottom? *several times*

Name 3 things you bought yesterday? *nothing at all*

Have you ever been given roses? *yes*

Current hate right now? *being sick AGAIN*

Met someone who changed your life? *yes*

How did you bring in the new year? *reading*

What song represents you? *Texas Tornado*

Name three people who might complete this? *Amy, Mary, Joan*

Would you go back in time if you were given the chance? *yes, if I knew then what I know now. Some decisions would be different*

Have you ever dated someone longer than a year? *YES*

Will you be in a relationship 4 months from now? *I'm not a psychic*

Does anyone love you? *yes*

Would you be a pirate? *yes! I'd get to see more islands*

What songs do you sing in the shower? *Toby Keith stuff-- You shouldn't kiss me like this, I Wanna Talk About Me, and Aaron Tippin- Kiss This*

Ever had someone sing to you? *yes*

When did you last cry? *last night*

Do you like to cuddle? *on occasion*

Have you held hands with anyone today? *no*

Who was the last person you took a picture of? *hubby*

What kind of music did you listen to in elementary school? *it hadn't been invented yet*

Do you believe in staying close with your ex's? *no*

Are most of the friends in your life new or old? *old. Nobody likes me here*
Do you like pulpy orange juice? *yep*

Have you ever ridden a on an elephant? *no*

What are you saving your money up for right now? *old age*

When is the last time you ate peanut butter and jelly? *I am sugarfree, so I had PB last night-- Jif*

What were you doing 12 AM last night? *wondering if I was ever going to get to sleep*

What was the first thing you thought of when you woke up? "Ouch, my ears are still here and they still HURT!*

Monday, February 16, 2009

Queen of Discounts-- that's me.

Many of you know I am fighting aging. Some days I'm winning, other days not so much.

I don't like paying retail. If I want something, I research to see how I can get it cheaper. It usually works. I've gotten great deals on 40 lbs of Dead Sea Salt and 10 lbs of Dead Sea Mud. And THIRTY-SIX Ace bandages for the retail price of three. See? I'm the dealmaker. The DIVA of deals.

I just wanted to get some make-up primer.

No, not spackling. Not grey paint.

I researched several brands and realized they all had the same ingredients as a basic cream that you can get for 25% of the price. That's 75% off, for those of you having trouble keeping up.

This magic cream that makes make-up glide on like butter?

Monistat Hootch Cream.



I decided to go to CVS to pick some up when hubby took me to the doctor the other day.

I invited him to come in with me to enjoy this purchase, but he declined. The exhange went something like this:

"I need to stop by CVS. You wanna come in with me?"

"Okay. What do you need?"

"Well... make-up primer to get rid of my wrinkles."

"You don't have any wrinkles." (Atta boy.)

"Sure I do. You're just old and blind."

"No, I'm not." (He's not completely trained yet.)

"Do you need anything?"

"No. What kind of cream are you getting?"

"Hootch cream."

(blink blink) "Uh....... what kind of cream?"

"Monistat hootch cream."

"Monistat? Isn't that for your.... er...."

"Yep. And it works on my face, too."

"You're going to put that stuff on your FACE?!"


You could have heard a pin drop on carpet.

Tonight he had a ball game and came home a little chafed from his cup.

"Hey--- can I use some of your face cream?"

I am the Queen.
It's all about PERCEPTION--

My daughter is so unlike me-- she is always the voice of reason and very level-headed.

Tonight we were chatting about odds and ends-- she is coming over for a visit next week and says she can't wait to see me since I'm a bit lighter as I haven't seen her since Christmas. (By the way, she's lost 25 lbs since hen as well-- I can't wait to see HER!)

I remarked about how horrible those pictures from last week made me feel and she said, "Wait a minute now... I don't think it's as bad as you think. What is the common denominator here, besides you? It's Dad with a camera. Remember, he has no depth perception-- he took that picture of you that made the REFRIGERATOR look smaller than you!"

As an aside, I used to have a bad temper. I've mellowed. But my blood pressure took a bottle rocket ride through the top of head. Illuminations has nothing on me.

Depth perception?? Maybe DEATH perception!! His, of course.

I realized that, although I've been on MANY vacations, you'd never know because I had no alibi-- I was the one holding the camera, unless he took it and kept snapping pictures so fast you could make a flip book from the photos. Or there are just pictures of rooms and things in rooms. I have pictures of nearly every hotel, motel, or resort room I've ever been in with the exception of maybe one. And that's because he wasn't there.

So, my voice of reason reminds me that, like Cinderella, someday my prints will come. And he'd better not be holding a camera.
Golden Girls---

I remember the day I first met Vicki.

I was 19 and hubby worked at a radio station back home. We went to a Christmas party at the station and there was this girl sitting in Santa's lap. She was 17 and funny as all get out. We talked and talked and found out she grew up down the street from my brother. Later, we worked for the same companies and were great friends.

We made a promise to each several years ago.

When we lose our husbands (or misplace them), we are moving to Miami. Yep.

It'll be Golden---- Girls, that is.

Vick is an adorable blonde, so she's going to be Rose. She's funniest when she isn't trying.

I have no editor on my mouth, so I'm Sophia. If I think it, it gets shared. I can't help it-- what am I to do?

I don't think we ever did find our Blanche or Dorothy, did we?

So, if anyone wants to audition, send us a tape. If you want to be Blanche, just send a resume. Our hearts can't take a tape of her. We are getting older, after all.

And Miami is calling.
That's what friends are for...

I've been meaning to write about how homesick I am. Can you believe it? I'm basking in Florida sunshine and happier than a pig in mud, but I'm homesick for cold, windy Delaware?


I'm homesick for my old life, my old friends. I miss Vicki and Wans, the two funniest people I've ever known. I miss having my friends close.

I miss walking out of my house and seeing the corn fields and swamp.

I'm homesick for my brothers and sisters. I didn't see them much when I was living there, but just knowing they were there was a comfort.

I miss everything looking familiar, 46 years worth of familiar. Everything is still unfamiliar here so it's sensory overload. miss my car knowing it's way to work, leaving me to daydream for 17 miles.

I miss the ocean -- my grounding place. My peace.

I miss the stars. You can't see them very well here, and it was always good to know that if a friend looked into the sky at the same time, we were both seeing the same stars and distance didn't matter.

I just....... miss.

Sunday, February 15, 2009

There's nothing like an old fool.

It's a proven fact that water is life-giving; I'm talking about the wet kind, not the Living Water, which is even more important.

I try to drink 2 -3 quarts every day. Sometimes it's a chore. So, I take my 12 oz cup, fill it with hot water, and add 2 drops of vanilla Stevia and 5 drops of chocolate Stevia. If I close my eyes REAL tight and sniff, I can imagine it's hot chocolate. Very thin hot chocolate.

There is a guy at work that I respect immensely-- he's very smart and speaks several languages. He was watching me make my little cocktail the other day and I felt bound to explain what I was doing.

He laughed and said, "Well, you can fool some of the people some of the time and Beck can fool herself ALL the time!"

No real lesson here-- just a glimpse into my train wreck of a psyche.
A few days ago at work, I was minding my own business, getting ready for lunch.

Yummy-- deviled eggs and an avocado.

I watch Food Network -- Alton Brown is my hero-- so I know the correct way to open an avocado. If you don't pay attention. There is a valuable lesson here.

I always eat my lunch in my cubicle because I try to shield myself from negativity that seems to infect any workplace where-two-or-more-are-gathered. Today was no different. Except that I'd left all common sense at home.

I like my deviled eggs fresh, so I put my fixins in a container and open the eggs when I'm ready to eat. I had a knife. Sharp knife. Remember that-- key point. It was an Emeril's paring knife-- the kind with his NAME on it and all.

Yep. I'm hot stuff.

Eggs go fine-- slice, mix, spoon, chow. Perfect.

Avocado-- not so perfect.

I slice it open perfectly and twist. YES!!! Beautiful. Two halves--one side with an empty center and one with the pit. Slippery pit's gotta go.

Didn't know just how far the pit PLANNED to go.

I jabbed that sucker with my VERY SHARP knife and pulled the pit out. Now, I have to get that pit off the knife. The very sharp knife.

I grasp it-- yow, it's slippery. So I wave the knife around, trying not to attract attention because I don't want to be arrested or carted off by folks in white coats. Still nothing.

I wave harder; it holds like an anchor.

I swing it around my head doin' my best Roy Rogers.

Then it happens. As T.D. Jakes would say, "Pit, thou are LOOSED!"

It flew four cubes down and landed on a keyboard.

The keyboards operator was stunned, to say the least.

There's no moral here, just a lesson.

The workplace should not be a Pits Stop on the road to Heaven.
I'm not oblivious-- I'm focused.

For some reason, my darling believes that I am oblivious. To everything.

"No, dear, I didn't see that car."

"No, dear, I didn't notice anything on my 14 mile drive on I-4."

"No, dear, I didn't see a giant mouse standing over there. Are you sure?"

I think it's all perspective. My mind is on a higher plane than mere mortals can grasp, so I only *look* like I'm not paying attention. Inside my itty bitty brain is a Hurricane Charley force of activity and buzzing.

"How can Belle have time to read if she always dancing with the Beast?"

"I wonder what detergent Cinderella uses to keep those gloves so clean?"

You know, important stuff. My Disney friends understand. Right, guys?

Some things I *do* notice. Clouds. Clouds of camels in top hats. Pretty. And shiny things. I notice them too.

I'm not oblivious. I AM FOCUSED.
I have a smart clock.

Yep, I do. If the electricity goes off, it resets itself without benefit of a lowly human (that would be me) when the electricity turns back on.

Down here in Flori-DUH, stuff happens. We have the highest incidence of lightning in the Universe. That's right --- the Universe. That's with a big 'U'. I used to be terrified of storms but now I'm drawn to them--- but that's another post.

My point is that it goes out-- a lot in the summer. And when it resets, it's 3 minutes slow. How smart is that?

I got it last year, before time changed in the fall of 2007. I thought *I'd* be smart and flip the switch so it went to the correct time at 2 AM. (What idiot came up with that time is beyond me-- it's the middle of my day!) At 2 AM it reset-- to midnight. Shoot.

Then, in the spring I had obviously forgotten the lessons of the fall and did it again. But here's the kicker--- time changed on a different day. So, it reset itself two hours ahead.

Then, on the day it USED to change, it did it again. No help from the human.

Fall 2008. You know where this is going, right?

Yep. Again. Twice. Those who do not learn from history are doomed to repeat it.

I have Smart Scales too.

Don't get me started.

Saturday, February 14, 2009

A question--

If a mud bath makes you skinny, what's the deal with pigs?
I've got to get my head in the game.

I am determined to not enter my 50's the way I spent most of my 40's-- a frump. Between November and January, I was a winner at a losing game. Losing weight, that is. 35 lbs to be exact, and that was no easy feat. I was rather proud of myself. Still am, for the most part.

My goal isn't so much a number, although 118 has been bandied about as a major incentive number. It won't happen-- I'm not 18 anymore, and not so sure I'd want to be. No, my plan is to be healthy and fit. I don't want to focus so much on a number that all else falls to the wayside. If Dr. Evil is reading, he'd be so proud! Eh, Boris?

I've been exercising and obsessive about entering my foods into Fitday and calculating BMI, BMR, NAACP, and my nutrient percentages. I know, I need to lighten up.

Last week I had some major emotional issues. We had our 30th anniversary and I looked really nice dressed up, I thought, and I felt great. Hubby took some snaps and when I downloaded them 12 hours later, I was devastated. It wasn't his fault.. I think something was wrong with my camera-- it added like 400 lbs.

I immediately started eating things I shouldn't have. I never realized I was SUCH an emotional eater. I always thought I was more of a bored eater, shoving things in my mouth just to a) keep my hands busy or b) to make me shut up :-)

I stumbled, but I didn't fall.

Anyway, I'm jumping back on the bandwagon on Monday. I have to get my head in the game and buckle down and get through the next phase. Four weeks of strict (way strict) and then three weeks of stabilizing and maintaining, then another four and three phase. And then I go home for vacation at the end of May and I just want to look healthy and happy. Even if it kills me.

I have one year, ten months and two days until I'm 50. Can I do it?

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

25 Random Things About ME!

I've been tagged a dozen times on Facebook to complete this list, but I think it will be too interesting (LOL) to be shared with just my group of friends there. It's going to be hard, because I'm an open book. On the other hand, a friend says I have multiple personalities, so maybe they can all help.

1. I love the smell of coffee but don't drink it.

2. I am addicted to CSI-- all of 'em. I talk in CSI-speak-- GSR, DB, vic etc.

3. I love nuts. Once I start eating them, I can't stop.

4. I don't have a will yet. I don't plan to go anywhere unless Jesus appears. And then, who cares?

5. I don't know most of the people I am friends with on Facebook.

6. I talk on the phone 8 hours per day. My mom would have called it my dream job when I was a teenager.

7. I had a chance to go to MIT but I was in love.

8. Our last dogs name was Killer. And he thought he was.

9. I am afraid of heights.

10. I am terribly homesick for my friends. If they'd all move here, life would be wonderful.

11. I've never tipped a cow.

12. I see things in the clouds-- camels wearing top hats, smiling alligators.

13. I am a history buff. Mostly English.

14. My first car was a light blue Nova. Paid $500 for it, sold it a year later for $500. Ah, the 70's.

15. I planned to marry Elton John.

16. I am actually a very good seamstress.

17. My aunt could be my half-sister. No, I'm not from West Virginia.

18. All the clothes in my closet face left, but I lean waaaaaayyyy to the right.

19. I can't carry a tune in a bucket. Some of you know that personally.

20. I taught Sunday School when I was 12.

21. I have a tatoo. No, you can't see it.

22. I am descended from the Boleyns and the Kings of England. I am royal. :-)

23. I was picked up by a chicken when I was two. Honestly.

24. I am afraid of getting old.

25. My husband calls me the Queen because I enter rooms waving at people I know.

Okay, not interesting. Sorry. :-)

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

The Bucket List.

My friend Mary tagged me for this one. They are busy playing tag on Facebook tonight!

Place an X by all the things you've done and remove the X from the ones you have not, then send it to your friends.

Things you have done during your lifetime:

( ) Gone on a blind date
( x ) Skipped school
( ) Watched someone die
( ) Been to Canada
( x) Been to Mexico
( x ) Been to Florida
( ) Been to Hawaii
( ) Been to Europe
( x ) Been on a plane
( ) Been on a helicopter
( x ) Been lost
( x ) Gone to Washington, DC
( x ) Swam in the ocean
( x ) Cried yourself to sleep
( x) Played cops and robbers
( ) Recently colored with crayons
( ) Sang Karaoke
(x ) Paid for a meal with coins only
( ) Been to the top of the St. Louis Arch
( x ) Done something you told yourself you wouldn't.
( x ) Made prank phone calls.
( ) Been down Bourbon Street in New Orleans
( x ) Laughed until some kind of beverage came out of your nose & elsewhere
( x ) Caught a snowflake on your tongue
( x) Danced in the rain-naked
( x ) Written a letter to Santa Claus
( x ) Been kissed under the mistletoe
( x ) Watched the sunrise with someone
( x ) Blown bubbles
( ) Gone ice-skating
( x ) Gone to the movies
( ) Been deep sea fishing
( ) Driven across the United States
( ) Been in a hot air balloon
( ) Been sky diving
( ) Gone snowmobiling
( ) Lived in more than one country
( x ) Lay down outside at night and admired the stars while listening to the crickets
( x ) Seen a falling star and made a wish
( ) Enjoyed the beauty of Old Faithful Geyser
( ) Seen the Statue of Liberty
( ) Gone to the top of Seattle Space Needle
(x ) Been on a cruise
( ) Traveled by train (I really want to!)
(x ) Traveled by motorcycle
(x ) Been horseback riding
( ) Ridden on a San Francisco CABLE CAR
( x ) Been to Disney World/Land
( x ) Truly believe in the power of prayer
( ) Been in a rain forest
( x) Seen whales in the ocean
( ) Been to Niagara Falls
( ) Ridden on an elephant
( ) Swam with dolphins
( ) Been to the Olympics
( ) Walked on the Great Wall of China
( ) Saw and heard a glacier calf
( ) Been spinnaker flying
( ) Been water-skiing
(x ) Been snow-skiing
( ) Been to Westminster Abbey
( ) Been to the Louvre
( ) Swam in the Mediterranean
(x ) Been to a Major League Baseball game
( ) Been to a National Football League game
( ) Been to Egypt

I just realized I've been nowhere, done nuthin'.

I don't have much time left!
High School Years

My friend Joan tagged me to answer a thingy (that's what I call things when I can't remember what they are called-- which is most of the time) on Facebook, but I thought I'd do it here, too.

High School Years

1. Did you date someone from your school?


2. Did you marry someone from your high school?

Yes, both times

3. Did you car pool to school?

I bummed a ride with Bill Austin most of time and he even let me drive his T-bird. Sometimes I rode my bike because we moved to town before I was in high school.

4. What kind of car did you have?


5. What kind of car do you have now?

Toyota Corolla

6. It's Friday night...where are you? (then)

It depended on who I was dating-- If it was Ben or Jerry (I'm not kidding!) it was Pappy's Pizza in Seaford. If it was Darrell, I was at the stock car races, reading a book.

7. It is Friday night...where are you? (now)

In my jammies by 6:30 and cuddled up with David (Caruso) or Bill (Peterson). I'm a CSI freak and they are on all night on Fridays!

8. What kind of job did you have in high school?

In the summer I was a custodian at my high school. It took me a week to dust the library.

9. What kind of job do you do now?

Glorified Travel Agent--- but SO much more!

10. Were you a party animal?

Oh, yeah

11. Were you considered a flirt?


12. Were you in band, orchestra, or choir?

Nope-- tone deaf and can't carry a tune in a bucket. Besides, I was busy flirting.

13. Were you a nerd?


14. Did you get suspended or expelled?

Uh, yeah

15. Can you sing the fight song?

We had a fight song?

16. Who was/were your favorite teacher(s) in high school ?

Mr Pienta, Ms Barto, Mr Morone

17. Where did you sit during lunch?

I stayed in the classroom playing poker for break money. No lie. I was GOOD.

18. What was your school's full name?

Sussex Central Senior High School

19. When did you graduate?


20.What was your school mascot?

The Golden Knights

21. If you could go back and do it again, would you?

Only if I can have the wisdom (or experience) that I have now

22. Did you have fun at Prom?

I had fun AFTER the prom :-)

23. Do you still talk to the person you went to Prom with?

I hope so. He sleeps next to me.

24. Are you planning on going to your next reunion?

Maybe. They keep having them in November when it's too darn cold to go north, so we'll see.

25. Do you still talk to people from school?

A few, when I see them out. Nobody that I talk with otherwise.

Okay-- there you have it. Any surprises?

Sunday, February 08, 2009

Things I've learned:

Frying pans can indeed fold in half, if they are cheap ones.

Unbreakable does not mean UNBREAKABLE.

Love doesn't end, it just changes.

You are always younger in your mind than in your body.

The more space you have, the more stuff you get.

Empty nests are sad nests.

You CAN teach an old dog new tricks.

Happiness is fleeting, contentment is more lasting.

Goodbye is not always goodbye. Sometimes it's 'Hello, Again".

The list gets longer and the time gets shorter.

Stress does not respect geography.

The things that are supposed to makes our lives easier comes with a pricetag called time.

When you see old friends, you don't see OLD friends. Time doesn't change a minute.

There's no place like home.
I told you I grew up PO'.

I grew up on a farm, so it was normal to help Mom slaughter a chicken. I can still smell the feathers in the boiling water and the singeing of the hair. You haven't lived until you've seen a chicken flopping around without a head. We even went out into the fields after harvest to pick greens. Yep, we wuz country.

My Dad passed away when I was 12 and then we moved to TOWN. Big time. Sidewalks.

I remember coming home from school on many occasions to a bucket o' brine with some animal carcass in it. It was usually rabbit, since my stepdad raised them for meat, but you never knew.

If my Mom saw a rabbit get hit by a car while she was driving, she'd stop, toss it in the trunk and we'd have dinner. No lie, cross my heart. As a matter of fact, I've never been sure if she 'saw' (wink, wink) it get hit, or if she was much less passively involved. We used to joke that if you saw a rabbit running across a field with a green car in close pursuit, Mom was bringing home take out.

I had a rabbit named Sarge when I was a teenager. My stepdad cut a notch in his ear so we wouldn't accidentally eat him. I don't remember seeing him after I got married, so he may have been Sunday dinner. If so, he tasted like chicken.

One time really sticks in my mind. The carcass was wide and flat--- it looked like.. well, it COULDN'T be--- but it was. A turtle.

She liked to try to 'disguise' food, too. Mashed turnips and mashed potatoes DO NOT taste the same, even though they look the same. If I was a bettin' gal, I'd say that my phobia of mashed potatoes took it's root right THERE.

She had this little green melamine bowl-- had it as long as I could remember. In it were 4 small potatoes with parsley on them. Nobody ever ate them, but she put them on the table for every meal. I think they started out as much larger potatoes, but they just shrivelled into little potatoes. She always swore she never made parselied potatoes.

Now I wonder what that green stuff was.

I can tell you one thing-- I ain't had a decent slick dumplin since she passed, and Florida has no idea what they are.

I'm getting a craving for scrapple. Rapa brand. Any takers? I'd give you my last nickel for some.

C'mon Eastern Shore-- help out a poor displaced wanderer?
One Fish, Two Fish, Red Fish, Blue Fish.

Back home, we were involved in youth ministry. I loved it! The kids were a challenge some days but those were the most rewarding days of my life. I directed a drama team and we did lots of outreach ministry and street ministry, as well as ministry within the church.

One student in our group was a little different. I'll call him N to protect his identity here. Nice kid, very respectful. Just a bubble off center.

A new Walmart opened up in a nearby town and a friend from church was working there. One day, a co-worker came to her and said, "We just caught a boy eating goldfish from the tank!"

My friend thought, "That sounds like something N would do."

Just then, her co-worker said, "There he is!!"

It was, indeed, N.

I wonder if the wiggling fish tail hanging out of his mouth was a dead giveaway.

This is HONESTLY a true story. I'm happy to report that N has grown up just as respectful as he was as a kid. No hope for the fish.

This story was brought to you by Dr. Seuss and the letter "F".

For real. I'm not joking.
Zen notso Zen for me...

I finally jumped into the 20th century. I got an MP3 player-- a Zen. It's adorable with lots of little square buttons.

It's driving me crazy. I didn't spend this much time in labor. Playlists, Napster--- I am so confused!

I have formatted, reformatted, reformatted my reformat; rinse and repeat. I'm exhausted.

And where did these songs come from that *I* didn't download? I've never heard of these artists and I don't like them taking up my space! I keep deleting them and these phantom songs reappear like a wart. A big hairy one.

If the 20th century is this stressful, I don't want to step into the 21st. I'll stay here, thank you very much. With my 8-tracks and vinyl. I'm good.

My Faves right now on my Zen:

Kenny Chesney-- How Forever Feels; All I Want for Christmas is a Real Good Tan

Doug Stone-- I Thought it was You

Toby Keith-- You shouldn't Kiss me Like This; Getcha Some

Tim and Faith-- Like We Never Loved at All

Steve Wariner-- The Weekend

Rascal Flatts-- I'm Movin' On; My Wish

Garth Brooks-- The Dance

David Lee Murphy-- Dust On The Bottle

Alabama-- everything they ever even thought about recording

Collin Raye-- I Can Still Feel You; In This Life

Cheap Trick-- I want You to Want Me

Clay Walker-- Hypnotize the Moon; What's It to You?

and 700 more.
I'm still in love with someone from the past.

Yep. I am. It's been a long time and I still get excited when I hear his voice. I don't think I'll ever get over him.

Donny Osmond.

Let's get down to Business! (to defeat the Huns!)


Tuesday, February 03, 2009

"My Wish"

I hope that the days come easy and the moments pass slow,

And each road leads you where you want to go,

And if you're faced with a choice, and you have to choose,

I hope you choose the one that means the most to you.

And if one door opens to another door closed,

I hope you keep on walkin' till you find the window,

If it's cold outside, show the world the warmth of your smile,

But more than anything, more than anything,

My wish, for you, is that this life becomes all that you want it to,

Your dreams stay big, and your worries stay small,

You never need to carry more than you can hold,

And while you're out there getting where you're getting to,

I hope you know somebody loves you, and wants the same things too,

Yeah, this, is my wish.

I hope you never look back, but ya never forget,

All the ones who love you, in the place you left,

I hope you always forgive, and you never regret,

And you help somebody every chance you get,

Oh, you find God's grace, in every mistake,

And you always give more than you take.

But more than anything, yeah, and more than anything,

My wish, for you, is that this life becomes all that you want it to,

Your dreams stay big, and your worries stay small,

You never need to carry more than you can hold,

And while you're out there getting where you're getting to,

I hope you know somebody loves you, and wants the same things too,

Yeah, this, is my wish.

My wish, for you, is that this life becomes all that you want it to,

Your dreams stay big, and your worries stay small,

You never need to carry more than you can hold,

And while you're out there getting where you're getting to,

I hope you know somebody loves you, and wants the same things too,

Yeah, this, is my wish.

This is my wish

I hope you know somebody loves you

May all your dreams stay big

Rascal Flatts

Friday, January 30, 2009

I laughed all day.

Today, an associate sat nearby me in the cube of a close neighbor who is out sick.

She had a high squeaky voice, which was funny enough. She's a little bitty thing and the voice matched. Utterly cute.

Then she laughed.

It sounded like a 300 lb trucker. I almost wet myself.

Me, I sound like a stripper. Honest. Call me.

$2.99 per minute, credit cards accepted.

My Favorie Movies, in no particular order:

Robin Hood, Men in Tights (with Cary Elwes, yum)

Same Time Next Year-- Alan Alda

The Love Letter-- Campbell Scott

Gone With The Wind

You've got Mail

Pride and Predjudice-- with Colin Firth

Bridget Jones-- both of them

America's Sweethearts

Nine Months

Notting Hill


My Happy Place...

I love going to France. And the UK. And I love it when I can go to both in an hour.

Yep, World Showcase. Epcot was the first Disney park I ever went to. We did it first because I was afraid the kids wouldn't want to go to Epcot if they went to the others first. We needn't have worried.

Whatever my mood, I find myself smiling as I get near International Gateway.

I make the turn at the bridge and head straight for France. I have a smattering of French blood and a smattering of the lingo. Well, if a smattering is what you get from 7th grade French class 3/4 of the way through the previous millennium, that's what I got. Watching Beauty and the Beast 17 million times also helped. Bonjour! Oui! Oui!

I walk around the pavilion and soak it up-- then I head for the pastry shop. If I knew enough French, I'd realize that they are probably laughing at my feeble attempts to communicate with them. Merci! Eclair!

Thoroughly chagrined (is that a word?) I head for UK where I can talk real language. I get there and realize that I am yet feeble. My Redneck can't hold a candle to the Kings English. Grail! Grail! Hooh!

I head straight for Twinings and drool over the china teapots. I collect teapots and have no more room for another. Slobber.

I buy more tea to go with the tea I have at home. I am mentally planning my next tea party. I don't get much feedback from the tea parties-- Fluffy, Mr. Wiggles and Furrball just never say much about it.

I continue around the Showcase and just soak in.

I am happy.
Another Dirty Secret....

This one is a BIGGIE.

I love Ace of Cakes. Just adore it. Duff is hilarious and Geoff is just hot. (This last part has traumatized my youngest daughter.... "MOM! That's so gross!")

It's cake.

Part of it's appeal is just the chemistry of all the folks-- and I love Baltimore. I love the Inner Harbor and the Aquarium and Fort McHenry.

And it's CAKE.

I'm a sap for anything historical.

Did I mention it's cake?

What's not to love?
I want to Move IT Move IT!

To Tahiti, that is.

No phones, no lights, no motor cars, not a single luxury...

WHOA-- channelling Gilligan. Whom I happen to think was quite hot, that hat did it for me. (Kate thinks I should be under psychiatric care for that)

Again, off chasing rabbits.

My dream is to live in a beach hut in Tahiti. My wardrobe would consist of a sarong and a coconut bra. Maybe a pair of sandals too. And a grass skirt for when I go star gazing.

No phone whatsoever. No lights, no alarm clocks-- I'd rise and fall with the sun. No food processor-- I'd have time to chop everything and cook over an open fire.

I'd walk everywhere so I'd be tanned and fit I'd let my hair go completely gray.

I'd search the woods for herbs and make herbal remedies and love potions and sell to visitors so I could trade for a chicken for Sunday dinner.

I'd have a native house boy to hang around the hut. He'll teach me French and I'd bake him a cake.

I really like cake.

Please don't wake me up. I'm liking this one. A lot.

Time to go to the Tiki Tiki Tiki Tiki Tiki Tiki Room!

Thursday, January 29, 2009


I dream. A LOT.

I dream in Technicolor-- okay, Technicolor on steroids. More like Technicolor on LSD. I've never done LSD, so it's really my imagining what it would be like. If it's anything like an inner ear infection, I'm there. We are comrades.

I dream crazy things.

The other night I dreamt my mother gave me a hot pink kitten and a hot pink cat and I spent a lot of time trying to keep them hidden from the Man Who Lives Here since he is anti-cat. As I was regaling him with my adventure, he said, "Now why did she give you hot pink cats?" I said that it was probably because she ran out of the neon green ones.

Don't tell my daughter Amy, but the other night I dreamed she had twins. She would think I was trying to jinx her.

I've had a recurring dream for years. Hold on-- this one gets weird.

I wake up and see the Man next to me in bed and I say to myself, "Who is that boy in my bed?"

I stare at him for a while and still can't figure it out. Then I ever-so-slowly get out of the bed and get in the closet. After a few moments, I find a pair of undies to put on under my nightgown and wiggle into them. I wiggle because invariably I find a pair of undies sized 2T (my youngest daughter is just weeks away from 21-- why are these still here?) and I squeeze my ample derriere into them.

I get back into bed with the boy I don't know and stare until I fall back asleep.

The next morning I awake to find my legs purple and stinging from the 2T undies and I realize I've been visited by the Crazy Fairy---- AGAIN.

There is a monster living in the Man's closet. If the door is open even a bit, I dream about the monster. He asked me what's in my closet. I say, "Clothes, of course. What else would be in a closet?"

Remember in all those really bad UFO movie when you can see the outline of a closed door and you can tell there is a very bright light inside the room? My master bath has that exact same quality-- and when the Man gets up to hide in there during the night, I see the door outline and think there are UFO's in there. There is something unidentified going on in there.

Other times I have had constructive dreams. When I first learned to title search, my brain was spinning. One night I went to bed and dreamt how to search a title and the next day I could do it like I'd been doing it forever. Two years later, I was working for myself. Twenty two years later, I closed up shop and moved to Florida.

I daydream a lot too. I find myself smiling at a cobweb in the corner of the room for absolutely no reason. You have to struggle to pull me out of it, too.

Sometimes you should listen to your dreams. Sometimes you should just wake up.
Many men can't hold their liquor.

My husband can't hold his Ginger Ale.

Twice now, he's dropped a can of Ginger Ale on the kitchen floor and it's burst to high heaven.

The first time it went straight up like Old Faithful. I was finding drops of Ginger Ale inside cupboards for months. It even got the ceiling and it's 11 feet up!

Needless to say, I was not amused but helped him clean it up because he was getting a migraine and I pitied him.

The second time, I chose to not attend the pity party. He aimed it a little differently and it sprayed my dining room like a bottle rocket... the table, the chairs, the chandelier and the carpet. He even got the cat. That was the closest I've heard him to cursing in years. There may have been some, but it must have been in Klingon.

Today was the day the big carpet cleaner got pulled out to remedy the carpet.

The kicker is that, although I don't drink sodas and was not the room when these incidents occured, it's my fault.

Apparently I need to buy Ginger Ale that is packaged in a quality can so as not to burst when he drops it from 4 feet onto a hard surface.

I think I'll go buy some now.

If anyone is looking for me, I'll be shopping. I'm in charge of buying the Ginger Ale for the next pity party. And I need a new outfit for it.
I am still a fat girl.

There, I said it.

I've recently lost 35 lbs, but in my head, I'm still a fat girl.

I have a shape now--- actually, I've always had a shape. Round is still a shape. My thighs no longer rub together so my pantyhose don't catch fire from the friction if I have a long, quick walk going. I like the way my legs look, and I've dropped from a size 18 into mostly 12's, depending on the cut. I still have my bodacious tata's and that makes me happy.

It's an accomplishment for me. I've tried everything that came down the pike. Nothing worked for long, if it worked at all. I found something that works for me and I'm happy with it. I have 35 lbs more to go until I'm at my goal, but 5 over my goal is still something I won't scream about. I plan to be there in July.

I am an emotional eater, and I know it, so I only have healthy munchies around now. I find that if my emotions get in a twist, a long walk helps more.

I grew up po'. I mean, WAY po'. I stockpile food like I'm expecting The Day After. I've always done that; I guess I felt like I was okay if there was plenty in the house. My daughter believes the chicken industry will stay afloat as long as I live. I was organizing my big freezer and found that 7/8 of it (21 cubic feet) was all chicken. I think for that they could send me a stinkin' coupon once in a while. Or a free chicken?

My double chin fell off along the way, along with most of the clothes in my closet.

Upside: I get to go shopping and buy cute clothes!

I eradicated my home of all those diet pills and empty promises.

I am very proud of myself!

Here's the downside:

The loss has brought up a bunch more emotional issues that I never expected. It seems that I've been holding on to my fat as a mechanism to keep me from other people. After all, everyone looks through the fat girl at the party, right?

It's almost like I'm grieving for the lost weight! I am NUTS! (I love nuts.. weakness alert!)

As long as I was fat and happy (as I thought I was), I was content to just stay inside and watch TV and not THINK about my weight. Now, I've been cleaning and reorganizing my house like I am possessed. Almost like nesting during pregnancy and that isn't the case for this old broad!!

Now I am motivated to go walking and I am constantly being asked if I am visiting someone in the neighborhood because folks don't recognize me! I am getting 'looks' (some good, some not so magical) at work from people who never had anything to do with me before.

I knew a girl back home who lost 30 lbs and she went wild. Divorced her husband, left her child, starting buying clothes left and right. She'd keep the tags, wear them once, and return them the next week. If she liked them, she'd keep them to wear a few times and then sell them.

I still have my fat clothes, just in case.

I was (and still am) very determined for this flab to flee, and now I'm wondering if it will open a whole 'nother can o' worms when it's gone. I knew who I was before; now I'm not so sure I still will.

That fat girl is still in my mirror. When will she leave?

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Godspeed, Murph ...

I lost a friend this week.

Considering I live in a retirement development, that isn't surprising. But Kathy was only 55 and no one knew she was ill.

You can't really just describe Murph as a friend. She kept to herself, but she was outgoing. She was one of the first people to welcome us here and was glad we were here.

She was larger than life, but her poodle, Jazzy, always had bows on her ears and Murph doted on that dog. She would do anything for her. As a matter of fact, Jazzy belonged to Murph's neighbor and was being mistreated. She went over, confronted them and picked up the dog. Then she moved with Jazzy so they couldn't find her and try anything.

Murph had a big booming laugh and you always knew if she was there. She was smart and funny and filled a room by the sheer force of her personality. She was unmarried but I would have been comfortable sending her off as an escort for my husband if necessary.

She's going to be missed. So very much. It won't be the same here without her.
Another Dirty Secret....

I can't make a decent meatloaf. Nope, I can't. I've tried a million different recipes. I think it comes down to this--- I don't like meatloaf, never have. Logic, eh?

Problem is--- I don't like mashed potatoes either, but I can make some mean taters. My husband loves meatloaf and mashed potatoes. Bully for him.

I am terribly complicated.

I had been married just a little while when I decided to tackle Veal Parmigiana. Who need s a recipe for that? It's a breaded veal patty, spaghetti sauce, and cheese. How hard can that be?

I pulled my little masterpieces out of the oven and immediately struck by their appearance. The were flat..... and brown. Not very appetizing, but I figured if he ate my meatloaf, this would be a treat!

I do need to apologize in advance to any buffalo, buffalo owners, or just folks who like buffalo. These flat brown discs looked just like buffalo chips. Actually, they would need a face lift to look as good as buffalo chips. It must have been because they were brown and steamy.

To back up for a moment, I must expound on my dishes. As a young innocent (read as STOOPID) bride, I happily purchased a set of snow white Correle Ware, four place settings. I say happily, as it may have been my first purchase where I used some common sense. They were white-- and matched everything! They were unbreakable and would outlive me! I could bequeath them to my children. I was using my noggin! It was a new and heady feeling.

I lovingly displayed my piles of.... er-- my veal masterpiece on my snow white unbreakable dishes, and covered both plates with pot lids so as to keep them piping hot for my beloved. I innocently called him to dinner. (enter blue birds untying my apron strings)

I explained the dish to him and he cocked his eyebrow at me (in a disbelieving sneer, now that I've learned what the look really means) and removed his lid. I did as well.

He says, "I'm not eating this."
I say, "Yes, you are." (I don't say this anymore)
He says, "No, I'm not eating this", and pushes it away.
I say, "OH Yes, you are." (another one deleted from my vocab) I push it back.
He says, "I'M NOT EATING THIS %&$*." Push away. Again.
I say, "OH YES YOU ARE!!!!" (a quick learner I am not)

He picks up one of the pot lids, and in a lovely tennis overhand arc, smashes it down. On my plate. AND BREAKS MY UNBREAKABLE PLATE!!!! Shatters it. And shattered my psyche in a thousand shards.

This was too much for my feeble brain to handle. I leaped to my feet and grabbed my chair. In my best lion tamer moves, I screeched, "$&#^$*% *$#$*% &$%*&#", don't ask me to translate. It wasn't my prettiest moment.

At this point, my brain shorted out. I threw the chair at him. This becomes a theme for the first 10, okay maybe 15, years of my marriage.

My chair shatters.

I have never attempted Veal Parmigiana since.

Lesson learned.
Who are you??

I am Polly's daughter.

I am Hazel's granddaughter.

I am Katie's great-granddaughter.

I come from a long line of strong women. Tough, hard women. Women who live forever.

Katie married her cousin in 1890 and went on to raise her own family. Then, when they were grown, she raised two of her granddaughters... my mother and my Aunt Doris.

She taught them how to cook, how to be good wives, and she taught them about Jesus. She was tough in a gentle way... my mother adored her.

Hazel was a hard, hard woman. She lived hard and she played hard. She was divorced in a day when it was a scandal; she had a child with a common-law husband, and then buried two more wedded husbands. We thought she'd live forever, and she darn well tried.

She chased us, waving her metal cane. She cursed at us and made us afraid of her. She was tough. She also loaned me $80 for my electric bill when I was the only one working and had trouble making ends meet. She also doted on my children. They still didn't escape the cane, though. :-)

My mother would have lived forever if she had seen that SUV. She was 79 and in good health for her age. She looked like she was about 60 or 65. She lost her husband when she was 48 and finished raising her youngest kids.

I miss her every day and wish I'd been a better daughter. I've learned to look at the blessings rather than the emptiness.

She was blessed in that she never knew the sorrow of losing a child. We were blessed in that she never forgot one of us, either. Her death was instant, so she didn't suffer. And we know to be absent from here she was instantly with her Lord. Many blessings.

She adored my kids, too. She liked to be sneaky and trick them-- she'd play Hungry Hungry Hippo with them and position herself downhill because her floor wasn't level, and all the marbles would just roll to her hippo while the kids were frantically trying to get marbles. Then she'd cackle. I heard that cackle come from my daughter a few days ago. It was comforting. :-)

She's never far away from me-- I see her every time I look in the mirror.

My fathers mother lived to be 93. Another tough old bird, but I know little about her, except for what I've heard from my oldest sisters.

I've got really good genes. If I'd thought about how long the rest of these women lived, I'd have taken better care of myself earlier. Now it's time for catch-up.

With genes like this, I'm barely middle-aged. :-)

This blog could have longevity. Sit back and start a pot of tea. You could be here a while.
Okay, I admit it. I am a Kitchen Gadget Freak. I can't pass the gadget aisle in any store. I gaze at egg slicers and spatulas the way most women covet a Vera Wang gown. If I got a box o' gadgets for Christmas, I'd be in gadget heaven. Now you know my dirty secret.

Worse than having a kitchen full of these critters, I cannot keep them hidden. They are ART, for goodness sake! I must display them! My drawers are empty and my counters are full. Logic says that if I don't see it, I won't use it. I must obey logic, right? I thought so too-- at least we agree :-)

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Influence is a CHOICE

I know, it sounds like a cliche. You really can choose!

YOU have the power to influence YOU. Remember the angel on one shoulder and the devil on the other? Well, they're still there. You have the power to choose which one to listen to. In this PC country, we call them positive thoughts and negative thoughts. Same thing.

Who ya gonna listen to? Peter Pan or stinkin' thinkin'?

Lets see the choices. Say you work in a place where you take calls all day. You have someone call and they have a horrible attitude.

Choice 1: Snap back.
Choice 2: Stay calm and collected.

Lets follow Choice 1-- you give it back just a good as they gave it. Both your blood pressures rise and things get heated. They crack and get abusive and you hang up on them, shaking and nearly in tears.

Choice 2-- Stay calm and let them vent while listening for what's really bothering them. Apologize profusely, even--- and here's the big thing-- even if it's NOT YOUR FAULT. Try to offer a solution and let YOU be the one that solves their concerns. By the time you get off the phone, they think you are wonderful.

There you have two choices that can affect your day AND their day. Your health and their health. Your outlook and theirs.

Don't stop growing. :-) Think happy thoughts.
My favorite potluck recipe--

Sweet and Sour Meatballs

1 package frozen meatballs
1 jar grape jelly
1 jar chili sauce

Put meatballs in crockpot; pour chili sauce and jelly over meatballs. Don't bother to mix it up-- it'll take care of itself. Cook on Low for 4 hours and stir. Cook 4 more hours.

Kudos go out to my good friend Pam, back home in Delaware. She told me this recipe at a potluck at our church, the Dagsboro Church of God... the best church in the world. She's a much better cook than I, and I thank her for her patience with me.