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Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Looking Back? Forward? Happy New Year!

Not one to lounge around rethinking what is done and can't be undone, I look forward, most often if I'm thinking of anything other than now.  On the brink of a new year, I wonder what is in store for "us"as a couple, "us" as a family and "us"as friends.
Taking a moment to look back, it's been a stressful time for my family with many good and love-filled times mixed in. Life is often that way. At the end of 2013 I see little changing except acceptance of things that cannot be changed. Making new plans for the new life that has had alterations that were not wanted, but were applied. We will find our way and we will survive and might even find a better life, at the end of the day.
All in all, 2013 brought the couple a wonderful amount of family time and grandkids time and Momma had a fairly good year with only one tiny medical scare, which turned out to be age related and at 91, she is in good health. The couple began retirement life with a full lower level remodel and we have enjoyed it every day since it's completion last April. The retirement life has gone quite well so one year in, I'd say this is going to be a good way to face the golden years. Just walking through them enjoying the life we've built.
What does 2014 hold for any of "us"?  I don't know, but I see another opportunity to grow as people. Another chance to be a better person. Lord knows, I have a great deal of room for improvement.  I think it's the year of finding who I want to be for the rest of my life. I am realizing that I have spent a lot of energy and time climbing mountains for people I care about and for people who needed a friend only to find that they don't cross the sidewalk for me for any reason. I'm not willing to do that any more. I'm still willing to be there for anyone who needs me and I will give whatever I have to give, but it will not be available on a let me drop my life right here and run to you, basis. It may be a little more on my schedule. I'm not going to find this change easy, but I'm going to work on it.
I am personally going to lower my expectations. I have begun this long lesson and it has worked for my level of happiness and relationships have gotten better because I am just accepting people I really love for who they are without expectations of them doing what I'd like. But, rather being overjoyed at what they do.  It turns out to be better all around that way. The less you ask or expect, apparently, the more you actually receive. I will work on spreading that no expectation thing to everyone in my life.
As long as I can feel loved by those I love, it's a good life. As long as I can feel the sun and not live in eternal winters, life is good.

Happy 2014 to you all and if you'd like,  leave a comment about your "new" plans!


Monday, December 30, 2013



As I started my evening browsing through the days postings on December 29, 2013, I was stunned, saddened and totally drenched in my own tears. The wonderful administrators of my original blogging group announced they were closing the group. Done. Finished. Elizabeth "Bethie" Grace and Stephanie Decilva Cardinale have been co-admins of the site Beth started in 2011, for the past year or so.  It's been much less active since Beth took a sabbatical and her loving and complete involvement became nearly non-existent. Others followed her example and though the prompts were posted weekly and were picked up by some writers, the large number of bloggers we were all used to reading and commenting with, slowly dissipated. The leadership personality was not present and we missed that. We apparently wrote for Beth!  We wrote for approval of our leader, as it were. Maybe not, but it felt that way. Actually what I think happened was that when we saw her step away, really step away, no blogs and no comments, we felt it was okay to do that as well.  We felt it was okay to not write for each other or to read each other or to comment on each other's work because, this was the new group personality.

Now, I'm not BLAMING Beth for the end of life of our close and brilliant group, though it reads as if I am, I am BLAMING us, the members who let her down and then let Stephanie down even more. When she tried to help Beth and keep us actively writing, we walked away. We stopped supporting each other; we didn't support Stephanie nor did we support Beth's life choice, though we said we did.
We didn't write. We broke the wonderful supportive and encouraging bond we had developed under Beth's tutelage.  I'm so sad about that.

Beth says it's the natural life span of a group to be born. To thrive and to die.  Maybe. But, I'm sad and like an old friend who has moved away and forgotten my name or that I love her, I will sorely miss this writing group and will never forget the experiences I've had here. The things I learned here and the friends I will always have because we met here.

I love you, Elizabeth Grace for all you have done for me since we met and for taking my friendship and reading my wordy and sometimes ridiculous blogs. And I wish you a future filled with love, kids, hubs and a little red barn with a black and white cow in your own back yard.


Thursday, December 19, 2013

Holiday Gift

As we draw ever closer to Christmas, my birthday, New Year's Eve, New Year'sDay and my sister's birthday...holidays are on my mind. Here is my gift to each of you, my faithful readers and my 2 or 3 faithful commenters.

From this day forward, may you look in the mirror daily and see the beauty and uniqueness that is you.

May you remember that giving is how you teach others to love.

May a shield of peace and comfort engulf you today and most of your days.

May your life have just enough sadness to remind you of your blessings.

As you walk through the remaining years of earthly life, may you always feel the hand of God in your own. His arms always snugly holding you in times of stress always calming your heart.

May you be mindful of the importance of family and love in your life. Without it, life is hollow. Family isn't always blood, but it is always support and warmth on a cold night.

Merry Christmas and a bright and shiny 2014. May all your dreams come true.

Thank you for reading, sharing, tweeting and's food for my soul.


Sunday, December 15, 2013

Naughty and Nice

GBE2 Prompt for the week...Naughty and Nice

New Recipe - oh, very NICE for someone who loves to cook new and different things.

Making a New Recipe with less than yummo results - NAUGHTY  and irritating.

Family gatherings - NICE no matter the reason or season.

Missing a Family Gathering - NAUGHTY regardless of the reason. Family First.

New Clothes - NICE. Who doesn't like new duds?

Shopping For New Clothes - NAUGHTY .  I do not enjoy clothing shopping. I do most of mine online.

Being a Grown-Up Retiree - NICE.  Really.

Sharing Retirement with Your Spouse - NICE. Almost all the time.  I still require my alone in the house time or road trip.  I feel like we are more of a team now than when we both had a job to deal with.

Home Remodeling Projects - NICE. Nothing makes me more giddy than tackling a project to increase the value of our home or freshen it up.

Remodeling WITH Your Spouse - NAUGHTY. Nothing more to add. Just avoid this at all costs.

My life is for certain filled with Naughty and Nice things and some of the naughtiest have been the  nicest I will add without explanation.

When FatBoy in red checks his list, I'm fairly confident he'll be making a stop at my chimney 'cuz I heard he really likes the Naughty Girls.  ;-)


Anti-Bucket List

GBE2 prompt...a list of things you don't ever want to do=Anti-Bucket List

This won't be real hard for me and it's a short list. Never isn't a word to use lightly because we never know what's down the road for us.

1) I never want to forget that it is God who gives me all my strength and will always be with me.

2) I never want to be without family - NEVER. It doesn't matter where they live or where I live, they will always be in my heart and I in theirs.

3) I never want to lose my passion for life and writing.

4) I never want to take anyone in my life for granted. I hope I never do.

5) I never want to need live-in help because I am unable to take care of myself. Please, Lord, take me home before that happens.

6) I never want to be too busy to give someone, anyone, who needs my help a hand or a word or a ride or whatever else they might need. (I might need a reminder here.)

7) I never want to skydive. See #5, unless...

That's pretty much it. Otherwise, I want to live everyday and try new things and have no regrets. I want to learn from my mistakes and then go out and make new ones. This is life and I don't want to miss it.


Sunday, December 1, 2013

The Girl Who Wanted...

As Jo Heroux tells this story, she finds herself falling asleep every other page or so. Oh, not because she is bored, but rather that she can't keep up with the action. The beginning is pretty ordinary things like making a bedroom in the closet, any closet will do and a make-believe friend, Chester, who everyone enjoys until one day...

The young adult years take you through a roller coaster of emotions and you'll no doubt relate to much of her trials and tribulations. Typical young adult stuff, like two kids in two years and a marriage going from awesome to awful in just under ten years. There might be some good times thrown in.

Finding Mr. Right wasn't a given, as you will see and what happened then? The real story begins.

The story of "The Girl Who Wanted..." to be everything and do everything and the road she took to try.

This is a ride you won't want to miss...


GBE2 prompt of Inspiration for week of 11-24-13

I am inspired by many things that I see daily or weekly or have only seen once. It comes to me from people mostly, but sometimes from Nature or events out there in the world. You simply never know from whence an inspiration may appear. I try to watch for them and still they sneak up on me sometimes.

My stories and my blogs come from the life I live and the lives my friends and family live. I feel their pain or share my own. I rejoice in their happiness or spread happiness from my own blessed life. Writing comes from deep within me and can never be stifled for long. If I felt it or witnessed it, I will have to write of it. I may share it, I may just write it for my own mental health. It depends on how free I feel to share.

But living...that inspiration comes from people around me who live a life closer to my goals than I am doing at this moment. Every day I try to be a better, more giving human than I was the day before. I want to improve without fail, but so far, I fail. I am happy to say some days, some, I do okay. I think overall I am a better person than I was a year ago. I am a more understanding and forgiving person than I was two years ago and I am a happier person than I've ever been in my life. I think the happiness comes from giving happiness. I try everyday to make someone smile. If I accomplish that, I'm good to go!

When someone needs me, I feel obligated and honored to help. I am always a little exhausted from the effort, but isn't that what giving is? You can't give without losing something. On the other hand, I gain such a feeling of purpose. It is impossible to give without receiving.

Inspiration comes from everything around me. Inspiration to be a better wife, a better mom and a better sister and daughter comes from my family. I can do better and I will.

Inspiration to be kind comes from every person who is kind to me for no reason. Also comes from every person who is rude to me for any reason. I don't like rude and I don't want to be rude, so I am inspired to never copy that behavior by those who think it's okay. It's not okay.

Nature inspires me to believe. To believe in me, God, goodness and life and death all being natural things that all work together. We are born, we learn to love, we grow and learn to give, we live and learn to take and we die and learn true grace. Nature reminds me. Grounds me. Makes me happy.