Unplugged

It seems like whenever we take a vacation, my husband puts a plan in place and for the most part sticks to it.  That plan is to “unplug” from the rat race of work, commuter traffic and all that comes with living in a fast paced area.   As we planned our spring break/Easter vacation at Deep Creek Lake, we both made an agreement to unplug in order to get plugged in.   Plugged in.

Deep Creek Lake is filled with family fun yet peaceful tranquility.   I’ve never been a mountain girl – but I do love being by a body of water.   Preferably, the beach.   After our first trip to DCL -I was hooked like a fish! Several visits later – I’m still hooked.   Swim off your own private dock or enjoy alfresco dining from your deck – with a great view!

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My mind, body and soul was rejuvenated.  Football Superstar and I have already decided this lake, this hidden gem of a lakefront home, this perfect fit for our family including the pup, will be our mountain lake getaway.   Looking forward to our next visit.

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Simplicity.

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Football Superstar is known for his awesome roaring bonfires.  This happened every evening.   Warm sunny days.   Crisp cool evenings.

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A man and his dog.   I’m not sure who enjoyed the dock diving more….my hubby or Murphy!   This pup spent hours swimming, dock diving and running along the shore with Apple.

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Apple Cheeks agreed that lake life is fantastic!

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Before we settled into our beds for the evening, we made a cozy fire in one – of the two large stone fireplaces.   Apple and Murphy share a secret.   ❤

The talk of Maryland Black Bear roaming around put a shadow of doubt in my mind -perhaps this isn’t the place for us.  I mean, after all….we are not mountaineers….we’ve never owned a bear or bear-like critter.   Large dogs don’t actually count.   But the shadow quickly disappeared after realizing the people of Garret County, and many other connecting counties of Maryland live with the black bear residents most of their lives.   We spoke with some of the locals (just to pick their brain) while shopping for groceries or souvenirs to get their input.   All but one told us not to worry.   They won’t bother you if you don’t bother them. Sows (a not so sweet way of saying “momma bear”) may get defensive over her cubs, so give them space.  Absolutely!  Space…she can have the whole dang mountain!   And if you’re out hiking with the dog….they will run up a tree to avoid you.   Wait, I’ll run up the tree, or the bear?

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And then this happened while hiking.            Don’t panic…this is the only bear we found!

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And as requested….don’t wake me unless there’s a bear.  Ahh, the simple pleasure of taking a mid afternoon  nap lakeside.  And I NEVER nap!

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I don’t even have the words to describe Easter morning and the gorgeous sunrise that greeted us on the deck while having coffee.   It was exactly 6:10am.   The lake was quiet.  The lake was always quiet early mornings, but on this particular morning the lake was silenced.   No geese honking their morning songs.  No fish jumping out of the water.   No fishermen trolling past our dock.   Only the still quietness of Easter morning.

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As we officially welcomed and celebrated Spring at the lake, Apple found a new passion for the outdoors.  Photography.   I don’t think she put the camera down – maybe to eat – but honestly I think she was photographing as her daddy grilled, or chopped wood for the bonfire and maybe capturing the picture of her momma napping.

Apple captured beautiful photos of Swallow Falls…which I almost lost my cookies after reading the sign:  Hazzard: violent rapids, slippery rocks, underwater hydraulics have caused injuries and death.  Apple was glued to her daddy’s side.  I however enjoyed the rapid hazzard-like swift moving water from a distance with the pup.

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Hiking around Swallow Falls and Tolliver Falls made me feel intimidated yet in awe.  The beauty that surrounded us (and many other hikers) was breathtaking.                                    And of course…we worked up an appetite!     As we drove back to our lakehouse from Swallow Falls State Park, we spotted so many deer.   We watched as they moved through the open fields or along a stream of water.   Among them were two fawns.   Watching the babes move swiftly beside their momma’s made my heart skip a beat.

I can’t think of a better vacation where we unplugged to plug in.  It was overdue for my husband.   And I can’t think of a better way to spend my vacation than to watch him plug into his family through plugging into nature.

Unplug.

http://www.deepcreek.com

https://dogfriendlydeepcreek.com

http://www.wispresort.com

Hatching the Decision Egg

While driving home from Costco this afternoon I was playing back the conversation in my mind – the one Football Superstar and I had over coffee this morning.     I’m laughing while driving on Rt. 7, heading south in full blown NoVA traffic.   No one notices my laughter because it’s like the Indy 500 to reach the next traffic light.   Every once in awhile I have an thought of what I didn’t purchase at Costco.   I’m fasting for Lent – it takes everything I have to walk past the Lindt chocolate sample booth.    Pirate Booty cheese puffs.   Okay, so Pirate Booty went in my oversized box to come home for our lake trip.   Give a girl a break.

6:00am.

Football Superstar:    “do you have any interest in returning to the classroom?”

Me:    “I haven’t given it much thought – but I do miss the special ed. program, if  I return to work outside of the home – I’ll look more at social services again.”   “why?”

Football Superstar:   “I think you should take a course in designing, or staging…you could -as you say “channel your inner Jolene Gaines” and enjoy doing what you love.”

Me:   “it’s Joanna Gaines….and what you’re saying is…. you wouldn’t need to pay a Stager for your listings?!  ( laughing because he called my favorite decorator Jolene)

Football Superstar:   “think about it….you could create your own schedule….other realtors would use your services…..you miss having your vintage business…..and I think it would be fun for you….and yes, (he snickers) I would have a “free” Stager.”

Me:    “I’ll give it some thought…..do you really think I should do it?…….geez, what if I only work for you for the rest of my Staging life!…..(I crack myself up) ……you realize you are asking me to make a decision…..and I’m skipping a meal which I can’t make any decisions during lunch time…..I have no chocolate in the house…..making decisions without chocolate for me is like asking Murphy to make a decision on which tennis ball she likes best.”

Football Superstar:   “just think about it…..you would be great at staging.”

decisions-and-impulsivity                                                                             Decisions.

I’ll sit on this staging egg.  See how it hatches.    But my husband who knows me so well is right about one thing – and that’s how much I miss having my shop.  If a particular someone is reading this (Gracie) you know that Joanna/Jolene Gaines stole my ideas!  I’m serious!   I watch Fixer Upper and I’m talking to Jojo and Chip – announcing to them that I did the exact funky-junky whitewashed table eight years ago!   The owner of a tea room purchased it for her kitchen!  Hey!….those candle sconces are table legs!  We had those!!!  You get the picture.  On a serious note – I adore the Gaines and their show is fun to watch.    She stole my cupcake idea as well.    [giggle]

  Though I continue to keep Simple Dimple‘s Facebook page and sale page up to date (as much as I can)  owning a full-time business in this area is very competitive and expensive.   My shop was located on my property when we lived in Pennsylvania.    It was the perfect location and super convenient for me, especially after Apple Cheeks was born.    For now, I’ll settle for being a vendor during seasonal events in historic areas of Virginia, DC’s summer market days and the occasional charity event.

Who knows what the egg will hatch out.  Or when it will hatch.    I’ll let you all know!

But before I turn into this >  Bride-of-Frankenstein-Bride-Screaming  I’m going to go eat a handful of pistachios.

14 more days until this >  70458e921d17c728271de30a1d33770a

Happy Spring!!

questions to answers

I’m a slacker when it comes to following up on Momma Daisy e-mail or Facebook messenger questions.   So I apologize at this very moment.   I’m sorry.  Very sorry.  Those bloggers who post daily or weekly are on their game.   I, however, not so much.

Question:    “Where are your (Momma Daisy) post on Shopping 101?”

 Answer:    Honestly, my shopping days [Shopping 101] are so scattered with weekly shopping at various locations – my mind has two gears, go and get back.   I miss documenting my shopping adventures because truthfully my shopping moments are exactly what I’ve posted.   My hubby isn’t shocked by any of my stories shared at the dinner table.   I believe he stopped shaking his head.    But I promise to get back on track with Shopping 101!

Question:    “What happened with your pups adventures and her Golden Glory family?”

Answer:         Murphy (our Golden Retriever pup) is still very much an active member of our clan.  Murphy’s Golden Glory family in the Philadelphia area of Pennsylvania is very much a  part of her life.  Unfortunately we haven’t been to Pennsylvania for some time, so Murphy hasn’t seen Roo (her mommy) or Momma Arlene.   However….our crazy, happy, loving and oh so adventurous pup has her own blog and social media page on Facebook.   If you’re feeling just as adventurous stop by and follow along on Murphy’s journey!                     Unofficial:  Murphy’s law                            http://murphygoldengirl.blogspot.com

Question:   “I recently read your blog post from 3/15/16 “Book Hoarder”, have you read any good books lately or have you collected any good books lately?”

Answer:     I’m laughing.   Yes and yes.   I’ve read some very good books over our mild winter.  And yes on the collecting.  Just this Tuesday I enjoyed  coffee with a good friend and walked out of the coffee shop with two gently used books.   Mother Teresa just happens to be one of my inspirations.  So I found a book of her personal stories I’ve never read before.  Mother Teresa of Calcutta by Leo Massburg.    And at $3 how could I resist?!      Instructions for a Heatwave by Maggie O’Farrell is sitting on my desk under a pile of paperwork ready to be picked up, opened up and enjoyed.

*more good reads:    Ask Bob  by Peter Gethers                                                                                                                                 Archipelago     by Monique Roffey

Question:     “Post more photos along with your blog post.”

Answer:      Okay.     I’ll keep that in mind when posting.   But I want to respect our oldest children and my youngest if they don’t always want to be posted on mom’s blog.   But the pup has no issues!    😉

Keep the questions coming!      Most of all, thank you for your questions and continued reading of Momma Daisy!

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Seinfeld comes to Wegmans

What a week we all experienced.   Schedules were changed, forgotten appointments and nine trips to the grocery store(s).

Sometimes the delete button for moments wouldn’t be so bad.  Knowing this isn’t reality…well…

I can’t remember the last time I went food shopping and used a check.   I typically can’t remember where we keep our checkbook – the checkbook is Football Superstars responsibility.   I can barely keep my “membership cards” in order.   There are cards for everything.   Discount pet points.   Valued card holder.   Coffee member plus!   So when I plan my food shopping events, depending on where my SUV takes me, I’m prepared with the discount/membership/plus card to accompany my debit/credit card when I swipe or chip my way through the checkout line.   However on Wednesday I decided to use our checkbook because we need to use up the checks so our new designer checks can be hidden where the checkbook is always hidden – in a location I forget about.

I’m ready to checkout at Wegmans.    Nate the checkout guy was quiet.  Friendly, but quiet.  As I’m about to hand him my non-designer check, he asked me for my “check cashing card”.     I remember wrinkling up my nose asking “what?”.    Nate repeated it.  “Your check cashing card maam’….the one you use for paying with personal checks”.    I rumble through my wallet not finding anything that looks remotely like a check cashing card matching the Wegmans membership card.  As I peek over my shoulder there are six other people staring at me and Nate.  Mostly me.   But one lady glaring at Nate as if she wanted to say “could you move her to another line already!”.     Nate politely asked me to go over to customer service where I would be able to apply for a check cashing card.   My groceries were bagged neatly, and I pushed the shopping cart over to the customer service counter.  Ruhi was on the phone.  He waved for me to wait with a smile.   As soon as he hung up the phone his friendly voice asked how he could help me.   I proceed to tell him what happened when the phone was ringing…..I nod for him to go ahead and pick up the phone.  He laughs and says it’s a fax number calling.   Okay, back to my crisis issue assistance.  Ruhi begins to tell me how easy it will be and only take but ten minutes to complete the online form for a check cashing card.   And Ruhi does all the work!

Step one.   Phone number.   Wait….there’s already a check cashing card under another phone number.    ?

That’s my husbands number!        No worries.  Lets get a card just for you.    As Ruhi types in my address he notices there is another address under my husbands cell phone number. We laugh…he changes Football Superstars information.   Our new address is placed in the system and my cell number is now on my very own check cashing card!    All is good!

We can’t help but laugh both sharing Seinfeld moments.   This was no doubt a Seinfeld moment.

It has been over five years since a check has been written to Wegmans.   If I remembered needing a check cashing card – I totally forgot about it – after all it’s been five years.  And obviously it was my hubby who used his very own personal check cashing card at Wegmans.   But now….I have my own card!      I told Ruhi he’s like a loan officer for Wegmans.   We kept laughing during this ten minute procedure.  Not ten minutes but twenty pass.   Between the bogus fax phone calls and other employees asking Ruhi a “quick question”,   ten minutes turned into twenty and then it was twentyfive minutes later.    I then realized it’s been quite some time since we received the Wegmans Menu magazine in the mail.   I requested that we begin to receive the magazine again….Ruhi said no worries….it’s still being sent out to you but going to the wrong address.   More laughing.   He places a Winter edition of the Menu magazine on the counter along with my new check cashing card and my new mini membership card(s).    Because my account number changed, so must my mini membership card number.   (shaking my head)

I collected my belongings….thank Ruhi and begin to exit the store with my groceries.

Three hours later I decided to go through my wallet and throw away any cards that I no longer use.   Like Panera Bread.   Starbuck cards with no amount whatsoever on them.  And an outdated Leesburg Car Wash discount card.     And there it was…..behind my Trader Joe’s membership card….green never used…..Wegmans Check Cashing card dated seven years ago.

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London’s Calling

It’s been almost a year since I’ve met Vonnie.   Vonnie and I met while walking our pups on the connecting trails that intersect the suburban communities in which we live.   If you’ve ever tried to talk while walking two hyper-happy five month old puppies you don’t get much talking done.  More pulling sticks from their mouths or commanding “leave it!”.

Vonnie invited me to have a “proper chat” at one of our local coffee cafes.   The following week we met while sitting outside next to a pretty decorative fire pit.   Four hours later it was time to pick up our kiddo’s from school.

Jumping ahead.    Vonnie and I still enjoy our “proper chats” but we save money by meeting at one of our homes.   This week was at her home.   Vonnie’s urban townhouse is decorated in warm soft colors with a splash of London. If you haven’t figured it out – Vonnie is a Londonite.   That goes for Vonnie’s hospitality as well.   Every visit I’m stuffing my face with “naughty’s”.  Being naughty by eating deliciously fattening non-organic foods.   Bangers&Mash, without the bangers for me.  I take them home in a doggy bag for Football Superstar.   Crusty bread with tangy cheeses, jellies and clotted cream.   Forget the high tea at noon, this is Vonnie’s childhood tea with a backhoe full of sugar and cream.  Put the pinkie down!    My favorite is Vonnie’s homemade pear jelly (a friend who lives in DC makes for her) smeared on water crackers with a slice of Stilton or cave-aged Cheddar cheese.

Vonnie could make me a simple slice of toast and the toppings are always “naughty”.

Our conversations are just as warm and cozy as her hospitality.   With an occasional “rant”.  She’s in the process of putting her Flat on the market back home in England.  Her emotional connection to the 1930’s, 900 square foot home with a flower garden full of herbs (pronounced with the H, like his name Herb) and English lavender made me fall in love with a building I’ve never seen in person.   This tiny Flat was Vonnie’s home all her single life.   After she finished school and entered Travel Academy Flight school, she purchased her very own home and filled it with love, friends, dinners and eventually her future husband and a few years later – their surprise baby boy.    I could smell the fresh scent of her flower beds, the aroma of wine and cheese seeping from her tiny kitchen.  I could hear the laughter from her friends and family as they sat around an antique table.

The photos of this 900 square foot Flat made me fall in love with living in tight quarters.  Could it be possible?    Well, we’re not purchasing Vonnie’s Flat and moving to London tomorrow.  I know this for sure because I called my hubby the realtor right after leaving Vonnie’s home.   He asked me what beverage Vonnie served during my visit.   Haha.

Learning from Vonnie is an experience I appreciate.  We, here in the US, certainly have many avenues with many options.   Health insurance complaints, I’m going to put on the shelf for now.  I shouldn’t be complaining.   Schooling.   We have some of the best private and public schools in the DC Metro area.    One reason she and her husband moved to the states.  Their son needed specialized health services.   After two years in the United Kingdom waiting – they received services within two months here in the US.

Vonnie misses her family.  And of course her friends that filled the tiny Flat she called calls home.     For now, the home is being rented by a wonderful woman from Johannesburg, who just happens to love this cozy, 1930’s living space.

Sometimes when we uproot what we have had for so long – can be a positive change.  No doubt for us, moving our family was a good change.   Vonnie recognizes this too.   We live in an area of new urban development.  Suburban single homes surround man made lakes along high rise apartments and condo’s.  Arlington is busy with new tech companies and now Nestle headquarters  is moving in.     Dog friendly restaurants and connecting trails from Northern Virginia to Washington DC are consistently full of bikers, runners and dog walkers.   Crew teams can be seen practicing over the hill on the Potomac. Museums and history.  There’s so much more for Vonnie and her family to experience.  Before they move to Boston.

Massachusetts.

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I’ll see Vonnie in two weeks.  Boston….Massachusetts.

no More shopping 101?

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I recently had an inbox question regarding Shopping 101 post.

“Dear Momma Daisy,  what ever happened to your Shopping 101 post?  Are you no longer food shopping? ”   – M.L.  Kansas  

My family…sure they are fed, healthy and happy.   Not sure they are happy with each meal  I lovingly create.  Perhaps I should say throw together.   My menu planning has taken a back seat to other work related stuff.  As I sit here typing this post – my menu dinner planner is peaking out from behind a file titled “Family Meal Planner”.   Even I get such a chuckle out of the clearly marked vintage style tag attached to the vintage style folder placed neatly in the vintage galvanized organizer.   This brings out my inner Joanna Gaines, and because I am NO Joanna….my office area clearly shows this file has not been touched in months.   Except for the occasional dusting.

As for food shopping, well my latest experience at Costco was more like a skit from Seinfield.    Normally my blue ticking linen backpack is placed in the shopping cart in place of a child.   If it’s on my back where backpacks are to be displayed – then I run the chance my phone will chime and I may miss a call from school (never get calls) , college daughter (prefers texting) , hubby (reminding me to get shaving cream) my mother-in-law, my father…. you get my point.   Tuesday my backpack played the part of being just that- a backpack and looking quite cute if I may say.   Not me…the backpack.     I was seeking out the ginormous bag of Krusteaz Buttermilk pancake mix when my eyes caught the book section.  I can not stay away from books.  I smell them.  I track them down like a bloodhound on its trail.   I love books.   While joyfully filtering through the latest selection of arrivals (the dude was just opening up boxes of newly pressed hardbacks!) I forgot there was a linen growth attached to my back.  As I slowly turned to make my way up the sea of words, the growth then attached itself to the handle of a shopping cart.  As I walked….so did the cart.   A woman laughing – chuckles out  “hey…excuse me ma’am…you have my cart!”    Oh, well, yes, yes I do!

Released from the metal monster I waltzed down the bakery aisle remembering how much Football Superstar and I love Rosemary-Parmesan cheese bread.  Two come in one sleeve.  ($6.99)   It’s not exactly our favorite bakery’s version but dang when it’s pumped out of the mega ovens and placed (again TWO) in a plastic sleeve while still warm and seeping the aroma of rosemary…..sold!     I know I was smiling not only on the inside but my exterior had to be exploding.   You have no idea how much I LOVE fresh baked breads.   Just as I was walking towards the produce selection a quiet voice appears from behind Aloutte’s Goat Cheese vendor booth.  Wait…goat cheese?   Rosemary-Parmesan cheese bread needs goat cheese.  I gently pick up one of the teeny-weeny cupcake like papers with a morsel of Aloutte goat cheese just enough for a mouse – when out of nowhere a couple, well dressed , possibly between the ages of 65-70, pushes my arm to grab three teeny-weeny cupcake papers when my morsel of goat cheese went flying in the air directly landing on the gentleman to my left – his black dress coat.   Sticking to his coat.   Do I pick at the tiny morsel of cheese – do I tap him on the shoulder as he was looking at a selection of Cheval Blanc.   Do I walk away.   Did you know goat cheese can be rather sticky?  Firm curds that react when pitched in the air.

I shuddered in my L.L. Bean duck boots.  Just as I was about to pass by and pray my linen backpack would come in handy as the tool it was designed to do (not really) and gently knock the morsel of now warm and less firm goat cheese from this gentleman’s black dress coat – I noticed it on the floor by his shiny black loafers.    This tiny morsel of goat cheese went from its wrapper to a teeny-weeny cupcake paper to my hand to a coat to the floor in a matter of seven minutes.    There was no way I was about to approach the vendor for a second sample.   But. There. They. Were.  The couple.  The couple that first took THREE teeny-weeny cupcake papers.   They were back for more.   I watched from the other side of the aisle pretending to be selecting guacamole.  This couple went from sampling more Aloutte goat cheese to the happy vendor warming up organic Al Fresco tomato&basil 60% less fat chicken meatballs.     It was lunch time.

I made my way through the paper product aisle making a U-turn down the frozen fruit aisle.   No way.  A vendor sampling frozen smoothies (didn’t get the brand name) was talking rather loudly to – yep – the couple.     It was lunch time.

Fifteen minutes later I’m waiting in the check out line.  Backpack is now sitting in the child seat of my mega cart.  I’m smiling because the aroma of fresh bread is still seeping through its plastic wrap.  My membership card is placed between my fingers so the kind check out lady can quickly retrieve it.  And just then….there they are.   The couple.   Two rows across from where I wait.   Talking.  Sweetly laughing with each other.   And in their hands….more teeny-weeny cupcake papers that held small morsels of granola.

It was lunch time.

My food shopping days have been of no value to report.  Meaning, I am not saving as I should to be bragging of my hours spent at Wegmans, Costco or Harris Teeter.   My backpack and sometimes my black leather tote bag at times are filled with receipts.  If I were an accountant I would have them neatly organized and categorized on display in a vintage file holder labeled with a vintage tag.

Maybe, just maybe some day I will be back on track with my Shopping 101.  Until then I’ll waltz through Costco watching and waiting for the couple.

Shu…..up!

I was not going to post on this topic.  Actually my husband tried to encourage me not to think anymore about what has become the social media sensation.   I’ve stayed clear of this mega mess of a political campaign.    What an embarrassment.   Deep deep down inside my core I felt many emotions.   These two are the best we as Americans can elect to represent the parties?     I guess so.

 

Moving on to the present.   So perhaps you may or may not have voted.   Perhaps you did and your vote was a dream come true.  Perhaps you voted and you felt stuck between a rock and another rock.   Or perhaps you didn’t vote at all.    I voted.   As I walked into the voting center with my tail between my legs I was nervous and scared.   I was wishing I could just walk out and not be seen.   Football Superstar felt strongly we go in and vote, and though he disliked (I’m not going to really say what he said) the two academy awarded nominees…..he voted.    As I penned in my choice (I so wanted to pen in my pups name) I felt nauseated.    Football Superstar drove me home and went to pick up my favorite coffee cafe’s pick – of -the-week.  And it didn’t begin with the letter C or T.      We then talked for awhile before he headed to the office.

 

Jumping over the game board.   We, the Americans have a new Commander in Chief.   We are swarmed with social media banter and criticism.  With a glittery touch of celebration.

I’ve not celebrated nor am I swarming you on social media with my views.   They are mine and will remain mine – forever and ever.      What I will share with you – (and this is where I probably should rethink posting this post)  is when did celebrities become our value system?      When did an actress or actor become the role model in our homes?   In our children’s lives?     Sure, celebrities hold a higher ground when it comes to raising their voices – and giving charity support – and maybe at times making sense.   But when did we begin to worship these folks of fame?       I’m not talking about the young girl crush either.  I’m talking about cheering on and Tweeting back or yelling back and being down right nasty – you said this and he said that and she is this…..

 

Allow me to tell you something about BULLYING.   That raw word flows both up and down the stream.   With Ms. Streep speaking out (no I didn’t watch the show) against Bullying and Trump Tweeting back I felt as if I was sitting in the center of a Middle School classroom during the morning news.    If I could see both Streep and Trump, I would ask them to come spend time (not an hour or just a day) a very long time in a school that is blanketed with hate and bullying.   Who’s the adult here?     And we….Americans feed into this sh*t!

I’m going to just say it…..Mr. Trump didn’t start hate.   It was already in their hearts.  Does he never stop with the radical immature comments and behavior – no.    Will he?  I don’t know.    Does Ms. Streep think that her good natured speach the other evening heal what has been done in Chicago?   In North Carolina?    Does she?   I don’t know.

What I do know is I’ve had it with the tennis match of nasty and who has the better behavior.   I’ve heard worse come from her mouth.   I’m about over what comes out of his mouth.

Hate is in the hearts before it surfaces.   Do some have a following – of course.  But no matter what hate is in the heart before it surfaces.   Don’t fall in the traps of social media and the fabricated stories that are there for our entertainment.    Spend time with any social worker or school counselor and their files are piling up.    They know first hand what bullying and hate is – what it does to children.    Celebrities can help in many ways – but they can also create the damage.

Why are we not trying to be the better?    Why does it take a man like Trump, or a woman like Streep or a group of protesters to raise America to it’s potential?

I need to be the role model for my daughters.   Not her.  Not you.   Not them.   I will work the best to my ability to show them what it means to be kind, value what you have, love who you are and don’t allow hate to win.    Words can be tricky.   Be careful of what you do with your words.    And who you celebrate.

Oh, only if I could speak directly to Mr. Trump and Ms. Streep….. I’d love to tell them to Shu…..UP!      Get up off your expensive deary-reary’s and do what your mouth isn’t doing.

Football Superstar just read over this and said “let it go”.   So I decided to sing it “let it go – let it go”.

*disclosure:   Public service announcement – before I’m deleted or become the back end of social media – this was not to bully Trump or Streep.   They were used as tools.    Okay, well maybe not tools, but examples.  Okay, maybe not examples….yeah, I guess they were targets of my post.      * I had a dream last night that I ran up on the stairs of the Capitol building before inauguration began – I grabbed the microphone and as I started to speak – my voice was that of an auctioneer.     I was auctioning off things I had no idea were at an inauguration.   *

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The end.

 

 

 

Accountability now Organized

imagesHappy New Year!      A new year – a new me.   No, no, no…I’m not trying a new diet.  I’m not taking cooking classes.  And I’m not enrolled in a financial class in order to learn how to make Shopping 101 earn the A+ other food shoppers have bragged of so many times.    No, this is about getting organized.   Organized.      This is my resolution.  I don’t make resolutions.  Because I’ve never been able to keep it.  Giving up chocolate lasted a day.    And my new running shoes are still in the box.   Well, not in the box but sitting on top of the Mizuno box.     This resolution is to get so organized it’ll make Football Superstar feel as if he is married to a new woman!    Well, ok..maybe that was exaggerated but as organized as I’ve ever been.

Plan A – have an accountability partner.

This idea came from LeeAnn.  After LeeAnn filtered all the ideas and plans she had flowing through her mind – she then decided to revisit her passion.  Creating.   LeeAnn presented me an offer I couldn’t refuse.

After revisiting my own passion for creating, I thought why not.  Though my plans to resurrect my vintage business was always on my brains “back burner”….I just didn’t want to make such a commitment that I know (especially in the area where I live)  would need to jump kick the competitive  styles and items we are now exposed to on Pinterest, Fixer Upper and Etsy.  I live in such an area where the IN is IN and the IN is what’s wanted.  No matter the price.   So for me to create the IN – I need to be completely organized and focused.   If I’m in to create the IN then I must really be in – it.

Without this taking over my other priorities – organization is the key.   I’m still devoted to my community outreach with the pup.  I’m still that PTO mom.    I’m still assisting my hubby when needed and I haven’t starved my family with the lack of warm meals and they do have clean laundry.     My mother was very organized.   I believe she had organization skills tattooed in her mind.      I need an accountability pal.

So, LeeAnn…are we in for the long haul?!

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This is what my brain has tattooed at the present.  A completely organized work space.

Plan B -To be continued….

soup for the soul

soup

I believe I read there are two hundred and fifty Chicken Soup for the Soul books.   No, I haven’t read all 250….

Soup has always been good for the soul.  My mother was the Queen of Soups.  A serious title she was given.   Her ability to create such flavor with vegetables, noodles, oysters or the occasional clump of tofu would make me incredibly happy.    I can smell her corn chowder now.

If I had a sore throat – soup.   If my father was craving oysters – stew.  And I could always count on my mother making a large pot of her vegetable noodle soup at least once a month for me.  I would drive over to my parents home after work to pick up my two gigantic Tupperware containers to take back to my city apartment to enjoy during those rough winter months.   It was good for the soul.

This weekend our annual K&K family Christmas dinner took place.   Wild Wild West Wendy stirred up three different types of soup.   Corn Chowder with cheese, Chicken Noodle and Pasta Fagioli.   There is no doubt Wild Wild West Wendy was singing in her kitchen to Irish Christmas music as she baked chicken, grated cheeses, and seasoned broth.   Each soup was full of flavor and love.    Homemade bread and a spinach quiche made the perfect companion to this comfort meal we were served.    It was good for the soul.

Another dear friend is a Queen in the kitchen with her soups.  LeeAnn.   And I’m going to drive up north to find comfort in her soup.   As a matter of fact…..LeeAnn is a Queen in the kitchen for baking too!    yes, my friend…that was a hint.

Soup for your soul.

If you want to find yummy old fashioned recipes,check out Sheryl at A Hundred Years Ago.

https://ahundredyearsago.com

silent heart

today I sit here listening to the rain patter against my kitchen window.   it’s a slow moving rain.  this is the kind of rain that comes to join the flow of tears.

 

I was given the news of a dear friends death yesterday.   Her life cut short from a darkness that does not discriminate.   My mind hasn’t stopped asking the questions- wondering why.  Trying to replay our last few conversations.   Was there a subtle hint of sadness in her tone.  Did I miss something.

“M” and I met when our pup, Murphy was only four months old.  She and her husband recently brought home their  three month old pup.   Monster and Murphy became instant besties.   “M” joined our puppy play group.   As time grew – “M” became more like the younger sister I never had.   Her outward beauty matched the inner beauty.   Her neighborly graciousness was beyond what you could imagine.   “M” would have fit the mold of the 1930’s adoring housewife – only adding her own artistic style.   She was an artist.   A designer.

 

Within the past few months I’ve attended suicide prevention lectures/forums for our school district.   The rise of high school students ending their lives has risen.   These events have given our community a reason to join forces learning “signs” and or “verbal cues” that could be picked up from someone who has thought of taking their life.   Working in social services we were trained on what to look for – or what do say/do if a student or client were to give us a reason they are suicidal.    But I would have never given any thought.   There were no warning signs.

 

“M” and I chatted the Tuesday before Thanksgiving.   We planned to meet for tea at our local coffee cafe.   “M” sent me a text letting me know that day just didn’t work because she had a lot of packing to do before the movers arrived – as they were planning to move in their new townhouse during Thanksgiving weekend.    She and her husband were going to be attending an event on Saturday with us, so I was really looking forward to seeing them.

Saturday at 11am, I received a message from “M” telling me a family emergency came up and they would not be able to make it to the event.    I replied to her directly after reading her message – my usual – sad face emoji and lets make up the time – soon!    It was Sunday at 9:30am I then read her last message to me – “you’re such a good friend” with a heart.

Never.  Never did I feel she was planning to end her life.   From the moment we learned of their new home, the silly Christmas hats she ordered for Monster and Frank to wear this coming weekend when we would fight the crowds to have our puppies pictures taken with Santa or Elf.    To grab hot chocolate and a slice of pizza downtown Leesburg afterwards.  To have Apple part of the pictures.    To laugh.  Be silly.   Be together, because that’s what we did best.

Her husband is left with broken pieces.   His family is close and will be there for him.  He will move – and journey through life without his wife.   His friend.    “M” has left behind those who love her – will miss her – and may not have an answer.   From what I understand the letter she left behind mentioned a few people.   The selfish side of me wants an answer.   And yet I know there may never be one.   It’s not about me.   It’s keeping tight of those cherished memories – loving her unconditionally and remembering this illness – this dark horrible secret those who may fight each day can grab a hold of any walk of life.      The CEO, the housewife, the teacher or choir director.   The artist.  The wife.  My friend.

 

my heart is silent.