It’s a Great Friday!

It’s a celebration today, the Babe went to the cardiologist and was one of only two patients in the past year who didn’t gain weight. What an elite group to be part of! I’m proud of him for sticking to the Keto diet and being strong enough to skip Christmas cookies and candies. We have two dozen homemade chocolate chip cookies leftover from our giveaway to the neighbors, and they’re going to go in the freezer. Way to go, Babe!

Since we would only be gone a couple hours, I left Goldie out of her kennel. I think she and Lexie played the music too loud while we were away. Nothing was eaten up, tipped over, or scattered about, so I believe they were good. She is certainly old enough to be left out of the kennel, but I hope she and Lexie don’t get into a tussle while we’re away. Baby steps, for sure. Goldie kind of hangs her head when we close her kennel door at night. I might try leaving her kennel open, so she doesn’t feel bad. I know. We pet owners can be ridiculous.

Bernie Sanders is certainly a character for the ages. The Internet is full of new Bernie Memes, complete with his chair and mittens. Guys got to dress for the elements! No time to be fashionable! How funny! I have to say on another Inaugural topic, the “fashions.” We finally have a woman holding one of the two top offices, and we still have a huge fashion report. Kind of strange, and I doubt it will ever change. I truly don’t think there is any more elegant woman than Laura Bush. She has a beautiful manner, and her demeanor is kind, in my opinion.

I’m currently reading a book called, “All Things in Time,” by Sue Buyer. Sue Buyer is well over 90 years old, and after being a professional writer her whole life, she has written her first novella. She was a Vassar College and Columbia Journalism School graduate. She writes about her observations at a large-circulation metropolitan newspaper.

Of course I was drawn to the story once I heard this was her first book, at 92, I believe. She worked in an era when women didn’t work away from the home. She was ahead of her time with her thinking and lifestyle. It is only 114 pages long, I’m sure I’ll finish it today. I’m enjoying her writing and storytelling.

Photo by Suzy Hazelwood on Pexels.com

It’s a chilly 27 degrees outside this afternoon. I’m feeling like having a nice, hot cup of tea to enjoy while reading a little while. It will be a great way to spend the rest of the afternoon. I hope you have an enjoyable rest of your day. Thank you for reading today, be kind, and see you tomorrow!

Awesome Monday Morning

I’m listening to Kevin Costner and Modern West. There are many songs that are perfect for the long, loving relationships, marriages, friendships. It’s where I find myself right now with the Babe. True Companions. “The One.” Being my protector, the one who helps me rise above the negativity in life. A true heart. I can protect him, too. From negativity, from himself, as he does for me. We’re so lucky to have this life together. I’ve been encouraged to go for my dream by this man. He may not understand it totally, but he’s on board for the duration.

This is a shot in the arm for my energy, in addition to losing about 20 pounds. We’re still doing Keto, and doing well. For me, I know it will be a slow but steady process. The whole point is to end up healthier, and it’s easy for us to keep going. I’m hoping for the longevity my Grandma Jewell had; she lived to 97. She was such a beautiful woman. Her heart was pure gold.

I told a little backstory yesterday about the craziness going on while I was trying to write the blog announcing Cartney McGuigan as my illustrator. The whole thing just came together, and I believe we all have opportunities that are golden, right in front of us. We have to be open to them; no idea is a crazy one; they’re ideas. They can be expanded and made into things that are not only possible but become vital to pursue. That is how I feel about writing. This whole prospect of possibilities makes me so happy!

I know I’m late, but our goal this week is to thoroughly clean the house while packing away all the Christmas decorations. So far, the tree is stowed, so we’re going well. The ornaments are all on the kitchen table, they’ll be put away later today. Having all the time in the world is helpful when you can only do so many things in a day. I always overestimate what we can accomplish, but never give up. We do what’s most important to us as a couple, and that is spend time with each other. Sure, we get grumpy at each other, but we’ve both learned what’s important and what isn’t. It saves a lot of petty disagreements most people have. It just isn’t worth it.

Next week, we go for sorting everything to do our income tax. That will be a wildebeest that needs taming. Seriously. Every year, I believe in my heart I will absolutely keep better track of our receipts, documentation, the whole thing. Every year, I have a box and desk like this:

Maybe next year I won’t do this again. LOL. Mom always says I had my father’s filing system genes. Oh well. I could have inherited worse!

It is snowing lightly outside my window. They are pretty flakes, that seem to be melting on contact. The view is nice, and I feel a warmth in my heart that I want to keep burning forever. It’s contentment, it’s satisfaction after creating. Any creative person can tell you what it is. It’s the feeling I used to get after expertly tailoring a suit for my business career; it’s the feeling I get after completing a beautiful quilt; it’s the feeling I have when I write. You made that thing; you wrote those words, you created those bridesmaid’s dresses, you created with ideas that filled your mind. It’s a purpose in life for some people. It makes others happy, too. It’s there for the sharing.

Thank you for reading today. I have a bunch of ornaments to wrap, stow, and some more instructional videos to watch and share with Cartney. Hope to get caught up and on the right track to have everything in order to allow for some more creativity. Quilting is calling to me right now.

Photo by Engin Akyurt on Pexels.com

Let’s all be kind to one another. How we behave in the next couple weeks can determine where we as a country will go in the future. I pray it’s a good path, I pray it’s a peaceful path, I pray it’s a kind and loving path. Let’s do our part. I’ll see you tomorrow!

Countdown to Christmas

No, I’m not telling you to hurry and buy something. This isn’t about that part of Christmas. It’s about a subtle yet important part of the holiday for music lovers. I believe the backgrounds of all our lives has the same commonality; some of the most beautiful music of the world.

When I grew up in the late 1950s and 1960s, public schools still sang religious songs; God was present in all schools. Of course, we parochial school kids had more of the religious singing, but we all knew the songs we heard on television, radio, and retail stores since the 1950s. Yes, Muzak was around then. They also used it in work environments to increase productivity.

Maybe I brainwash myself when I write, I do so much better while listening to music. Today’s music to blog by is Ray Scott. He is a country artist, and I love his storytelling. You want to hear a dominant voice, a funny story, listen to Ray. He will have a new album soon, I’m in. And, as an old lady I knew once said, “He’s easy on the eyes, too.” She was a riot, so prim and proper, yet there she was, making observations you’d expect to hear from a 20 something.

So while cleaning the bathroom this morning, I was listening to one of my favorite traditions on Christmas; which sadly doesn’t happen anymore. I’ll save that one for later, but I sat down and listed some songs I think of at Christmas. They may not be on everyone’s list, but they’re around us. Too early (like before Halloween). One of them is “Deck the Halls,” by Omaha’s own Mannheim Steamroller. Chip Davis came out with this unique sound in the 80s, and is world-known for his trademark sound. I believe he doesn’t play concerts anymore, years of playing drums have caused some orthopedic issues in his cervical spine; I empathise with him. It must be so hard to give up what you love.

What is up for your Saturday? The Babe and I have a major cleaning of the house scheduled as soon as he gets home. I miss the cleaning ladies, but I don’t miss having a little extra money in my pocket. I’m using it for my online writing classes and tutorials. It’s all about compromise and imposing limits on yourself.

We’re cooking a bunch of chicken pieces to eat on salads over the next few days. The diet’s going pretty well. We both want to stay on it, and it’s easier with a buddy who cooperates with the plan. My ex husband was a thin wiry guy. Even before I was overweight, he made comments about my weight, a “should you eat this?” kind of guy. He ate constantly and just burned it up. The Babe’s not been like that in all the time I’ve known him. What a kind man he is. I always tell him, “You’re my favorite husband.”

Getting There, One Pound at a Time!

I read in my “Days of Healing Days of Joy: Daily Meditations of Adult Children of Alcoholics,” how we all make a difference. We can be an example of positivity in someone’s life; or we can be agents of hurt. There are four ways to do that. I’ve lived through all four, folks. And it’s so good to recognize those aren’t the way to treat people; and it for darned sure isn’t the way to treat yourself. Let’s work on these things the last seven days until Christmas. Make your world brighter. And some else’s, too.

  • Criticizing: It’s our not our business nor our place to judge other people. If you make rude comments in public about morbidly obese people, you’re wrong. Keep quiet. You can be totally wrong about “how they got like that.”
  • Insulting: Snide comments rob people of their dignity. Nothing gives you the right to blurt out things to another, especially in front of other people. It damages their self-esteem.
  • Name-Calling: You’re not “only kidding.” This is abuse. And you’re abusive. Knock it off.
  • Ignoring: Why be indifferent to someone? Why give someone reason to doubt their value? Who put you in charge? Ignoring people can lead them to question their own value. If you say, “Good morning,” to a homeless person gives them value and dignity. Try it.

Our thoughtlessness and bad habits have more effect on people than we think. Be Kind. Be Thoughtful. Especially during this time of Love and Joy. Be Safe, Wash Up, Masks Where They Belong; I’m looking forward to 2021, and I’d like all of you in it, too. See you tomorrow.

Fun Friday

Did some errands earlier today, and we just had lunch. The knees are still bad right now. We’ve had a busy week helping with getting Addison to and/or from school, taking Mom to get her hair done, and my other appointments as necessary. This is a very busy time of year. Sad to say, in three weeks or more, Christmas will be over. For the next three weeks, some of us need to get started with cheerful, grateful attitudes. It becomes a habit after three weeks, and will be easier to summon when we need it.

We received the best mail today! Billy McGuigan recorded a solo album during quarantine. What else is a musician to do when in quarantine? He wrote and recorded everything. By himself. It should be great. I’m going to wait until tomorrow to give it a listen while I’m writing in the morning. It should be great. I know it’s old school, but I do like CD’s.

This weekend I’m gathering and wrapping all the little gifts for our grandkids in Colorado. I’d like to mail them by next Wednesday. Should make it. I also want to decorate, too. I have nice decorations for our new tree, and it’ll be nice to have it up again. We don’t exchange gifts among any adults in the family. It’s all part of preparing for the holiday. Preparing your heart is important, too. Stories abound of generosity and goodwill during the season, yet, as soon as it’s over, people, being human, go back to selfishness and stinginess. So sad. Let’s try not to do that anymore. Let’s all try to be wonderful humans.

We had a new Keto meal tonight. The Babe found it online and suggested we try it. Ground beef, broccoli, cream cheese, shredded mozzarella cheese, and bake it. It was tasty and there is enough for another meal. Those are the best dinners to cook. After a month, we’ve both lost about fifteen pounds. It’s strange, though, it shows much more in how our clothes fit. That is the real test. It’s a process. We didn’t gain it all in a day, we won’t lose it in a month, either.

It’s a brief blog, tonight. It will be longer tomorrow, it’s time to say good night. Proof I write much better in the mornings. I’ll see you then. Thank you for reading. Be Kind. Be Safe. Be Thoughtful. Take care.

Photo by Hert Niks on Pexels.com

Monday Happiness

No, it didn’t even snow this much, but I thought the photo was pretty. While I was writing an article for our VFW Post 2503 Website, it fell gently at first, then the flakes fell faster. The article described our experience helping collect winter clothing for homeless Vets. With the snow today, I felt so happy for about thirty people who would have a nice, warm coat, several pairs of new socks, and water resistant boots.

I spent time today picking up a dress to alter for a girl my son works with. I haven’t done that for a while, but it’ll be a fun thing. It usually is. The weather was just wet and cold by then, snow melted. The pretty scenes are gone. It will snow more this year, I’m sure.

This Keto eating is going well, we both have more energy. However, it’s a lot of work! When you cook your own meals, there is planning, shopping, following recipes, searching for ingredients. We’ve tried to find smoked paprika for a few weeks. Finally, at the little Mom and Pop store in town. They usually come through. Thanks, Babe!

After I got home, I prepped tomorrow’s breakfast and baked it. Then it’s make something for dinner. Nothing much is quick any more, unless you have a salad with hard-boiled eggs, sliced ham, turkey, and veggies in it. That may be dinner tomorrow. Yep, we’ll make HB eggs tomorrow, and some more bagels. Those are weird. Melting Mozzarella cheese until liquid, you mix in some new “flour”, and mix up the stuff. I couldn’t get it to roll out very well last time. It was more like string cheese instead of a “rope” to create a bagel from. Practice will help, I’m sure. We can both tell our bodies are changing. The weight loss isn’t huge, we’re both about 10 – 15 pounds. But we’re not hungry, and are going to eat Keto for Thanksgiving, too. I’ll make sugar free cranberry sauce, loaded baked “cauliflower” potatoes, and loads of raw veggies. We’ll have Keto Pumpkin bars with real whipped cream. It should be a splendid feast.

Tomorrow, we’ll have more to visit about, it’s just a little before bedtime now and should have info on a mask mandate in our little town. We have a high rate of folks at our local church, causing everything to be cancelled in person. So sad. Take care, be safe out there.

Suddenly Sunday

And it’s not only Sunday, the start of a new week, but it’s the start of a brand new month. Knowing what promise a new month holds piques my interest. What grand things will happen with my book? Whatever happens, it will happen indoors, unless we have an unseasonably warm month. It wouldn’t hurt my feelings if that happened. We are ready for normal.

So we delivered a few bags of candy to our closest neighbor kids. We didn’t hand out treats to everyone, and not one person came to our door. I think lots of people found alternative fun for their kids. Unlike the large group at a party in New York. How risky! No one can say that is Trump’s fault.

Photo by Brianna West on Pexels.com

The Babe and I are following a modified Keto diet. It’s approved by our Doc. I can tell you I’m hungry; it’s been over three hours since we ate. I got hungry yesterday, too. I think that’s a good sign. I need to make another grocery store trip before we can really get going. I don’t want to throw away things I have, it’s wasteful. I bought a bag of “Cauliflower Rice.” I’m wondering what the Babe’s reaction will be to those. If they taste ok, fine. If not, we’ll try something else. If weight really falls off as quickly as “they” say, we’ll be in our old jeans in no time. Wouldn’t that be a splendid gift to give each other? I’ll believe when I see it, and I hope to. It’s nice to have a partner to share the journey with.

I love Cream Cheese. It’s on the list of foods. Heavy Cream! Allowed! Steak? Allowed! Pork Rinds? Yuck! I’ve never had a one and I highly doubt that will change, although they’re allowed. The Babe doesn’t even want any! I love vegetables, unfortunately some of them are too starchy. I can adjust. I think I will go on record as saying I think I’ll skip seaweed crisps. It just sounds wrong. Sugar is the enemy. The Babe quit smoking six months before we met, so it introduced him to another world; that of having to watch what he ate. He was trim (as was I) when we met. Contentment sometimes adds some weight. So does cancer treatment.

I have some tidying up to do to my Chapter Two and Three today. Thursday, November 5 is another ZOOM meeting with Sam Tyler, Book Coach. I’m coming close to being where I wanted to be, but I have the rest of the month to get there. Going to spend time in the studio today, coddiwompling. How’s that for a word of the day?

The photo above of the wooden spoons, painted different colors, was from a Panera’s I was in a couple weeks ago. I thought it was a fun work of art. Sometimes things just seem like they go together. Like Vegetable Beef Soup, Sunflowers in a Crystal Vase, Memes and Inspiration, Artwork and Encouragement, you just know when some things belong together. I’m using this attitude for my writing this afternoon. Sam, get ready for some reading! At least inside, it feels as if a breakthrough is near. I’ll let you all know.

Thank you for sharing some of this Sunday with me. I appreciate it more than you know. Hope to see you all tomorrow. Be Careful. Be Courteous. Be Calm and Rock On!