Satisfying Sunday

The wedding yesterday was so fun. It’s always so sweet to watch a couple just starting out. They are often a bit older than back in the day, they are established in their careers, they may even be homeowners already. This was such a memorable event because nearing the end of November, we were outside, with a beautiful Iowa cornfield as a backdrop. It was absolutely perfect, no wind or breeze, a warm late fall sun shining, and a couple who are clearly crazy about each other. The three sisters have all had beautiful weddings over the last couple years, all unique, all as special as they are. Their dad shed tears over each of his girls, and they were great hosts each time. It does our hearts good. The world is choosing to go on, with God’s grace. The Pandemic has been awful, many have lost hope, but we saw the future last night. It’s the hope, all rolled into these families who gathered. It’s in our hearts even today. Check out this beautiful venue!

And it’s come at a great time for me. I tend to get depressed over the next six weeks. I’m not alone, I know. It’s easier to admit that out loud, then I give voice to it. Over the last year or so, I’ve grappled with it, and I will conquer it again this year. Now, we have many things to celebrate; we both had COVID in October, and have no lasting effects from it. We’re grateful for our health, each other, our friends, relatives (well, most of them!), and I look forward to making Thanksgiving dinner. Many of the old standard dishes will be made. I’m trying mashed potatoes in the crock pot. I look forward to trying that out. It’ll be fun. My daughter has two toddlers, who would be fun. However, they spend holidays with her husband’s mom, she’s a widow, and her son is the only child. She would be seriously alone if they traveled. I’m perfectly fine with sharing my daughter with someone who may need her more than I do.

I read this morning may be we’re not as different as we think. I had to think about that quite a bit. Even kids without alcoholic parents have had bad experiences growing up. They’ve experienced feeling weak, lonely, their homes could have been disrupted by serious illness, not alcohol fueled havoc. And don’t get me wrong. Mom’s drinking got worse after I left home. My two younger brothers had completely different parents than my older brother and I had. But other kids have their own stories, scars, brave hopes. They may have had it worse than we did. It is possible.

I think families were very tight lipped when we grew up. If there was domestic violence, no one talked about it. It may have shown, the woman wearing makeup over her bruises to church. No one ever said anything. Children in that home grew up as unevenly as we did.

We are as imperfect and glorious as they are. They are not the enemy. We all have things. We all have bad memories. We all are deserving of good, safe, productive lives. We all deserve a safe, loving relationship, if that’s what we want. We may have to change some bad habits to have one. The one I had to change was not believe love hurts, to believe it truly existed, and good, solid single men existed. Once I let one walk into my heart, I’ve healed. I’m most grateful for that.

I’m going to spend the rest of the day reading and using my heating pad. This colder weather does a number on my back. It’s going to be a busy week, and I need to be better than I am right now. Lots of sitting at the keyboard last week. Have appointments all day tomorrow, so more busy happening. See you tomorrow!

Happiness and Freedom!

Yes, today is a new national holiday. We haven’t had one named since the 1980s when we added Martin Luther King, Jr. Day. He was a great man of peace and freedom. And now, we have Juneteenth. Communication was terrible in the days of the Civil War, and word had not made it to the great state of Texas about the freeing of the slaves. That or the owners refused to communicate that message.

However it happened, I just read on June 19, 1865, Major General Gordon Granger, who fought for the Union, led a force of soldiers from Galveston, Texas. His mission was to deliver two very important messages: The Civil was over, the Union won, and his troops were to enforce the end of slavery, which was declared by Abraham Lincoln several years earlier. Unfortunately, not all slaves were granted the freedom they so justly deserved. No human should be a slave to another.

The South did not want to free their slaves. They still mistreated them and defied the law. Things did not improve for many years. We still have a way to go. We still have a way to go for freedoms for women and LGBQT people, too. It is not a single group that still fights for equality. No group, however, should have more rights than another. No one should lose their freedoms, either.

We will get there. We have to. To survive as the greatest nation in the world, we need to achieve what we were seeking when we all immigrated to America. Freedom. And from that freedom comes gratitude, tolerance, kindness, and love. We help each other. One group doesn’t support the other, but we teach and provide guidance. That’s what we do.

I get pretty upset with people who hate our flag or automatically think, “they are racist,” when they see her wave, in all her majesty. It is current, representing our growth from thirteen British colonies, who fougt the Revolutionary War. They won their freedom from the Brits. Glad we didn’t grow to 50 colonies! We would have no religious freedom, we’d mostly be the Church of England, pay outrageous taxes to the Crown, and no one would have blinked when Harry and Megan decided to live here.

The America I grew up in is not here anymore. That is both good AND bad, really. Good because of medical breakthroughs, and the wars we have fought, the freedoms we’ve regained. Could you imagine if Hitler hadn’t been stopped? Could you imagine if North Korea or China ruled our world? There would be no protest at all about our flag, and no angry one-hit-wonder Grammy award winner grousing. Too bad they feel that way. I believe they’re in the minority because of their opinion. Not because of their color.

The bad part about this not being the America I grew up in anymore is the farmers are not respected anymore by a lot of folks. Neither are Blue Collar workers. In the 1980s, the nation lived by the mantra, “You can make more money sitting down than you can standing up.” The computer industry boomed. You know what? You still need mechanics, skilled carpenters, electricians, plumbers, and a plethora of other trades. We need them. We always have. Add to that cooks, bakers, chefs, and those who prepare the food you go out to eat often through the week. When we were kids, we went out rarely for dinner. There was no McDonalds. We went to a restaurant my parents loved, and we ate spaghetti, which I’m sure was the cheapest thing on the menu. It was very special because we didn’t do it very often.

As for me? I am grateful and extremely happy to wake up in America every day. I always have been and always will be. Many brave men and women served under this flag to ensure we get to wake up under the flag of freedom. You will hear no complaint from me or the Babe. Have a great day, today, this Juneteenth. Be grateful. Be Kind. We all need it. Be happy as a baby who giggles from their toes on up. That’s happy! See you tomorrow!

God’s Smiling Down on Us

It will be another scorcher today at the Home Office in Gretna, Nebraska. We expect it. If you’ve never noticed, to me it seems as if it’s hotter than blazes for a week to ten days, then a cold front moves through, and it’s cool for two or three days. I think it’s just weather patterns, but I’d like to think God tests us and then gives us a break. I believe He does that.

The header photo is one we took this morning as the sun was coming up over the Wetlands behind our house. I told the Babe when I was a little kid, the sun beaming out from either side of the cloud was God smiling down on us. Why not? I still hope that to this day, He gives us signs like that. He gave us a beautiful world to experience, if we could slow down enough to observe and enjoy.

There is also a cardinal, every morning, who goes to the same bare branch at the top of one of the trees, and sings loud and clear. You can’t help but smile at that. One of his perches is hidden, but we can still hear him. He goes back and forth between the two branches, and we enjoy his song. It’s the simple things, you know?

Now we both have rocking chairs on the deck, and rocking chairs – well – rock, in my mind. The movement is relaxing. I think of when I rocked my babies to sleep. During the middle of the night when it was time for a feeding, I’d change him or her, get their bottle, and settle into the rocking chair, rocking back and forth. I didn’t mind the sleep intrusion, I loved taking care of those babies. And the grandkids, too. It’s been a long time since I had a rocker, and these are made of a composite material, guaranteed not to fade for 20 years. They’re nice enough they could be used in the living room and not look out of place.

While The Babe and I talk, I am reminded of the song by Rick Tiger, “Coffee & Conversation.” I cannot locate a video of it on You Tube to share. It’s a story about a kid who wakes up when he hears Grandma and Grandpa get up early, make coffee, listen to the farm report radio, and what he hears during those early morning hours. Rick describes the noise the rocking chair makes, the conversations going from left to right, politics, church, God, everything an old couple could talk about. We share the memory with Rick as he tells his story. It’s a beautiful one, that touched the Babe’s heart.

He talks a lot about being at his grandparent’s farm in South Dakota. What a great environment for kids growing up. All they learned, it’s incredible. His Grandma continued going to the farm every summer, but stayed in town as she became elderly, the farmhouse was heated by a wood burning stove, not a furnace. Too dangerous if she’d run out of wood or if the power failed during a blizzard. Not to mention falling on ice/snow/etc. She was a sweetheart of a lady. She called the Babe “Danny.” She was the best. She passed away a week before our wedding in 1998. We started the week on Monday with her funeral, then ended the week with our pre-nup dinner on Friday and wedding on Saturday.

I am excited for the things the rest of the summer will bring. Hopefully, we’ll get an uneventful season of re-discovering how to live again. Outside of our home cocoons. Try it out. Be Safe, but get out. It’s fabulous. See you tomorrow!

Tuesday: Building Momentum

It’s a great start to the week. I need to make a stringent (yet flexible) schedule for myself. To stay on task as a volunteer and writer, I need a schedule. Then there is the question of keeping a tidier house. Do all writers deal with this? Or is it only those of us who have two big dogs in the family? They shed, but they’re part of the family, too. It would be wild if people shed like dogs do. We do shed skin cells and hair constantly, but not like dogs.

I tend to be a messy creater. It doesn’t matter if it’s a clothing construction project, a quilt project, or a writing project. I’m messy with the cool tools I’ve assembled to do it. I’m a cool tool collector; it goes with the creative territory. And with writing and art? Books on how to; kits to make it “easier”; calligraphy, you say? When I get time to do it, I will have a kit on hand. Yes, I have a lot. I’m rearranging all of the hobby stuff downstairs. Then, later in the summer, as it’s time to take a rest break, I can fill my glass of cold iced tea, go downstairs to get on the patio; and grab a bag of an embroidery project to work on, or read, or draw, whatever fancy strikes me. But I can’t get there until it’s cleaned up and organized. I am not a hoarder like you see on TV. Those poor people really have mental health issues. I know some folks who are like this. Sad.

I need to assess what I have around me while writing. I have a handy growing library of books on “how to”. I have notes, notes, notes and printouts from free online classes. They can be extremely helpful! I need to sift through this sandbox of knowledge, and discard some of it. The time is now, too. By June 1, I want to have schedules of my days so I know what needs doing first. Priorities are so important! Feeling accomplished is, too. We both went through some depression. It is terrifying, not knowing what was going to happen. The Babe told me, “Vietnam felt the same way.” Perfectly normal feeling for both circumstances. We need to refocus, get ready, set, and go! Join me in a new direction for all of us.

Taking the time to be organized will cut down a lot of wasted time. Period. We all fall into the rabbit hole of Facebook, Solitaire, Instagram, etc. I can be checking on useage or spelling of a word and twenty minutes later, I need to take my attention back to the task at hand. My dictionaries are ready on the desk next to me, but I seem to prefer to googling the word, figuring out how to spell it if I’m lucky.

Isn’t the Header Photo today beautiful? Our neighbor, Carol, gave us some of her North Dakota Roses and Peonies. Aren’t they pretty? I love having fresh flowers in the house. It gives me a lift no matter what’s going on. p.s. We still need to get our flowers planted in pots outside. And move this pesky bush before it gets huge again. And either move or split up the butterfly bush. It gets too huge, and blocks the sidewalk up to the house if we let it. There grows the list about tasks at home; see what I mean?

My “I Create Daily” group , led by LeAura Alderson, posed a challenge today: “Write a List of 30 Reasons to Smile.” How about it? Puppies. Babies. Old Dogs. Old People. Bright Colors. A Soft Towel. Live Music is Back. No Masks Soon. The Blue Sky on a Perfect Day. The Rain. The Flowers Bursting Blooms. A Butterfly. A Butterfly chased by a puppy. A dog chasing Bubbles. A baby playing hide and seek. A Child in your lap. Reading. Reading to a child. Writing. Facebook Friends. Communicating with Friends. A walk. Vacation. Visiting Grandkids. My Dad. Creating. Painting. Quilting. Finishing a project. Success.

Find your reason to smile today. Share it in the comments, please. I’d love to know what gives you smiles. Soon, we’ll be able to see each other’s smiles again. Take Care. Be Safe. Be Kind. Thanks for reading! See you tomorrow!

Tuesday Visiting Friends

Hope you had a beautiful day. We did. The Babe had a day off from his Post duties today. We went to visit some favorite friends we haven’t seen in a while. They are also both retired and have grown children too. The woman is experiencing health issues, which will be permanent. They are such good people, and you hate to see this happen. Especially during these times.

Our visit was delightful. The man in so funny, we had a lot of wonderful laughs. It’s been a long time since we’ve had such a friendly visit. We will go back sooner this time. No doubt we will have a lot of time to spend with them. I hope so. The old saying is true, it’s good to have friends where you can pick back up where you left off. These are those friends. We are so blessed!

If it feels as if your elevator is out of order, maybe you need a change in routine. Sometimes we do from the monotony of everyday life. It gets monotonous doing the same thing day after day. Getting outside of yourself and doing something for others can add something to your life no doctor could prescribe. Giving does something to the mind and feeling of wellbeing that is hard to find. We all need to be active with others to live in the world.

Making a choice, taking a chance in life can change everything. Take the risk. It can be a little one. When you succeed, you’ll become bolder. You will gain confidence. You will take another risk. A calculated one. More success! Things change. Slowly and surely. You have made a change. Be proud of yourself! Do some more. It’s amazing where you go.

The self-help meme above names many things I do when things get to be too much. Too much sadness, listen to music. It’s a great escape. Writing about some things long ago has helped me feel better than I used to about myself at certain ages. The Babe and I grew up during a time our parents expected certain things from us and did not inflate our egos at all. No “Good Job!” for baby-boomers. No “You’re amazing!” either. Just a lot of “Next time do it perfect.” or “Next time, you can do better.”

When I read a good fiction book, the story makes me travel through time, whether it’s a WWII historical fiction book or a tale of Irish immigrants coming to America. The clock becomes a blur and I’m taken away on a magical trip. I love reading. Always have. I can only hope to do it forever. Mom has vision issues since her stroke, that is unfortunate. She cannot use audio books because of her profound deafness. That limits her access. My younger brother bought her a super duper bright flashlight she calls “The Beacon.” She laughs about it but sure uses it for when she needs a – well, a beacon – to find something she cannot see. She usually can locate the missing item. Good for her!

Tomorrow is the rheumatologist and the ortho guy. Checking on the arthritis and getting the last of 2 shots in each knee. I have to say, I’ve definitely noticed how the cold makes every joint in my body just hurt. I can’t attribute to anything but acknowledging we’re aging. It’s definitely not for sissies.

Being around longtime friends reminds us of that; yet it’s great, because I’ve known those friends for over forty years, from when we were younger than our kids are now. And we exchange the lies none of us have changed, but we know the truth. Friends always do. And that’s why we remain friends.

Call some of your lifetime friends during this Christmas season. Renew the friendships you had that are important. If they’re strong, they’re still viable. Seriously. You’ll enjoy catching up. And you’ll all enjoy the time. You’ll gather again. Before you run out of time. You’ll be glad you did. Be Safe out there. See you tomorrow.

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.

Friday Finale

This is how my day started. Bon Jovi was on GMA this morning. I’m quite a fan of his, even since the 80s during the hair band era. He is an extremely handsome man, even in his 50s. I admire two things about him, aside from his musical talent. He operates a restaurant in his hometown, and the meals are free. It is quite an operation, and he continues to work there many days. The other thing, he is still married to his high school sweetheart, marking 40 years this year. How unusual. I can’t imagine the early days were easy for her. But, nonetheless, they’re still a couple who love each other and their family very much.

This song came from a photograph his wife took of him washing dishes in the kitchen of the restaurant. She asked him to come up with a caption for it. He said, “When you can’t do what you do, you do what you can.” And that, boys and girls, is how this song, “Do What You Can,” was born. Some people can just take ordinary words and make them magical. I hope to be able to do that, for you and for myself.

Do What You Can – And Do It Today!

How inspiring. And there are lessons in the lyrics. We need to be loving each other much more than we are. We need to be kind, we need to do what we can especially now, to make the world a better place during this crazy time we’ve all bought into. No, I’m not talking about wearing masks, I do believe there is a virus out there that can kill us. We lost two gentlemen from the VFW Post, both in their 90s last week who died of COVID. One just wanted to go fishing, and he became ill. I’m glad the poor guy was able to go fishing. But who’d thought he would become ill then. Seems unfair to them.

What I’m talking about is the ugliness I read every day on Facebook. I swear George Stephanopoulos had a gleam in his eye as he talked about “order of succession” should Trump, in his advancing age, die, and Mike Pence die, and then Nancy Pelosi, as Speaker of the House, would be President. Wow. Have we really come to that? I’m just so tired of it all.

Sure, I could shut it down, stay away. I don’t want to. I’ve made some wonderful acquaintences from groups I belong to, such as Quilting and Writing. I won’t give those up. So I scroll further and further between posts these days. Let’s. Just. Stop.

From the clinic visit yesterday, I’m experiencing much more swelling just below the ear, into the jaw. I have no toothache, but man, it’s hurting. The doc said do what you can do for the discomfort until you either start to run a fever or something else comes up. OK, I’m hoping it’s not a toothache, abscess or something ugly like that. It about had me declaring a day to live in PJ’s and lounge. But, once I heard that great new song by Bon Jovi and the incredible Jennifer Nettles, I couldn’t let a day slip away. Music motivates me. Helps me look on the bright side.

I was smart, finishing all the laundry yesterday, and I’d like to finish my scenes/outlines today. That may free up part of the weekend for me. And that would be a good thing. Sunday, there is a Show & Shine Car Show at the Post, we look forward to going up for that. It’ll be fun.

And then, this will propel me into the rest of my day. This rendition of the old “Who Says You Can’t Go Home?” by Bon Jovi saw performance at a Superbowl Half Time Show. It was the first time I heard Jennifer Nettles. I love her voice. She has such a strong, great voice. It’s quite a collaboration. If I could sing, I’d want a voice like that.

As I make way to writing some more scenes, I’d like to challenge you to think of how you could make a positive impact in the world. Learn how to do it in a small way. We don’t need to open free restaurants for the homeless or very low income folks, we can make a small donation to a food bank. We could collect things for charity. Pick out a charity like Moving Veterans Forward who gives everything to the Veterans they’re helping. And the recipients of the help have to work for it, too. It’s not a free ride.

A long time ago, a very smart person told me there’s nothing better for a teenage boy like being able to earn a few bucks and have his own money on his person as he walks down the street. Now, same would be true for females, too. And I saw that. If you’re financially stable, even if it’s just a first paycheck, you walk differently. You talk differently. You have some confidence in yourself. That’s what MVF helps these people achieve. And that’s definitely worth our time.

Comment below and let me know what you’re doing. Help each other. Call an elderly neighbor. Say hi to people you encounter. Let’s all start making this a more positive world. We need it. Thanks for reading, I hope to see you again tomorrow. Let’s do this!

Wedding, Take Two

Today marks the second wedding this cute COVID COUPLE will have this year. Originally, the nuptials were to be in April, and we all know how that turned out, with quarantine and cancellation. Two of my cousin’s daughter’s planned weddings this year. One (the August one) went off without a hitch, we socially distanced, and it was good. Katelynne and Marc Lile were legally married on their original date. The party will be today after they renew their vows.

What a novel way to start out. Initially, it was devastating. To be a young couple and having to cancel their plans had to be heartbreaking. They learned very early to add humor to a bad situation and it lightens the load for everyone. The photo says it all, I think. The Groom, I believe gets credit for this lovely photo they posted on their Facebook account. It says it all. The families made the best of a bad situation. I applaud that.

If you have any life experience, you know this won’t be the worst thing that happens for any young couple. They have shown early on they have great skills, coping with a bad situation that is out of their hands. They have great promise for their future, which is built on love, partnership, and determination. Congratulations, Katelynne and Marc.

All of this is a great example of how whatever happens in life, we can learn to roll with it, or make it ruin every day from here forward. I don’t take lightly events like loss of health, death, murder, etc., so just know I’m not minimizing recovery from those terrible things. This change of date for the reception was devastating, but they chose to re-frame it and remember it with grace and laughter. It is still a serious commitment with the vows, and there will be great stories to tell their grandchildren. Amen to that.

My “work” for today is to straighten up my studio office, write the blog, do some research, and watch a free Instagram training video I missed earlier this week. I think it will be worthwhile. It’s awesome people offer it for free. Of course, it’s to lure you into buying more training for a fee, but at least you can try it ahead of time and see if it’s a fit or worth it for you. The Instagram training will be benefit my author page and the VFW Post 2503 page I’ll be unveiling later this month. I’m fortunate to be in a position to gain personally and professionally from it. God’s showing me the way again!

There is a lot of confusion among our kids with school, in class, at home, no athletics, and I believe people are dealing with much more than some can handle. Of course, one may say it’s easy for a retired person like me, but we still are very concerned with out grandchildren who are of school age. These changes are not easy for them. Our grandson Joell is an only child, so if we go to quarantine again, he will have no kid contact except by video game contact with other kids. I think he plays a game with Gavin, across the country. Some kids don’t have that. I’m unsure what our answers to any of this should be. All some of us can do is pray. Pray with all we’ve got.

We can’t give up, as those isolated elderly people are reportedly doing in some nursing homes. My heart breaks for them all. I know how the Babe’s Mom would look forward to everyone visiting her. She had probably the most company of anyone in the entire place. She was a very nice lady. MS ravaged her body, she couldn’t move on her own, but she could talk, and talk she did!

Did she complain? Very little. I know it was easier for us being away in Omaha, and the kids in Sioux Falls handled a lot more than we did, but she always asked about the lives of the people visiting her. She had a way, even before she was bedridden, to make you feel so important. She had a way with people. God Bless Her. I want to be a Liz. I want to make life normal despite the bad things going on around us. I want people to smile again, to crack jokes, to make light of themselves. We have to keep going. We cannot give up our will to do so. Please. It will be worth it on the other side of this pandemic.

Let’s keep doing everything we can to be positive, polite, courteous, kind, thoughtful, and share what we have. Time is the most important commodity at work here. Time, caring, love, lead to interaction and making a difference. Make a difference in someone’s life this weekend. You have until Tuesday morning to accomplish it. What a way to start the first full week of September! It will be a great start to the fall months ahead. Be safe, Wear a mask, Wash up. It’ll all be worth it when we’re safe again. See you tomorrow! Thank you for reading.

Friday, Blessed Friday

At last, we have a family wedding to attend today. This cousin did not have to reschedule her big day, thank goodness. It should be a lot of fun for everyone. This family is so sweet, they are all wonderful human beings. It will be beautiful weather, too. Maybe a little rain, but nothing huge. Every day is a perfect day for two people who love each other to get married. We will socially distance, and if it becomes too crowded, we’ll go home.

Photo by Lum3n on

Parents and educators are getting pretty upset with wondering about the virus and kids in school all day. I wouldn’t want to be in their shoes. Superintendents everywhere are expected to be able to predict the future, and they cannot. No one really can. The experts cannot even agree with all the information, real or not, that is circulating out there. All we can do is prepare for anything. Prepare to homeschool again in a month or so. It may very well ramp up again. Omaha, Nebraska is one area that is ramping up in number of cases. We are steering clear of very large crowds, and distancing when we are out. I hope and pray our grandkids do not become ill, or my mom.

My Pro Writing Aid software add-ons for Chromebook are behaving strangely. While it does a great job of generating reports full of improvements, the format is no longer correct after making and saving changes. Big problem! All sentences are left justified, all centered words, like chapter numbers are left justified. That shouldn’t happen. I’ll have to ask their tech people about it. I may have to use the software on my Microsoft O/S laptop, and not on the Chromebook. I could save each chapter to the cloud, then run Pro Writing Aid reports on it there. Maybe things would stay in place then. (It’d be saved as a Word Doc, not a Google Doc).

Yes, Be Stronger Than Your Storm

There are many, many storms out there being fought by many, many people. Women, Men, Children, Elderly, Young, Middle-aged. Some fight against demons most cannot imagine, thank goodness. But, oh those with unimaginable demons, we don’t judge you by what’s been done to you. It is not your fault at all. Some people’s bad choices create storms, such as a gambler or an alcoholic. Some people learn bad behavior, such as spousal abuse and child abuse. These are not normal things in a life. You should not experience these things at all, as a child or participate in them as an adult. You need to gain power over these storms. Power over the storms and your life; and your future. It can change if you want it to. Yes, it is hard work. There is help.

Know there are people who can help you, regardless of the issue. Reaching our is very hard. It is the first step out of the storm. One step up and two steps back happens often. Don’t give up. It’s worth it.

I hope you find some peace this weekend. Enjoy your days, however they come about. Sometimes, things go nothing but wrong no matter what you do. Other days are perfect, no matter what you do. Have one that’s in between the two. Thank you for reading, I’m grateful you did. I’ll be back tomorrow, and hope to see you then. Be Careful out there. Be safe. Be Kind.

Hump Dayyyy!

The week is half over, if you live in a regular Monday through Friday world. I have six Saturdays and a Sunday, myself. Without Church in the equation, it’s more like seven Saturdays. You know when a person is young, charting out their careers, families, their place in the world, they never have enough time. I remember talking to my Grandma Bobell one time, after my daughter was born. She was my third child, and although I didn’t work away from home, I was very busy. I did my own cooking, baking, cleaning, and a lot of things like that. I enjoyed sewing and crocheting, too.

I was visiting Grandma with my kids and she said, “Just remember, when you get old, you’ll have all the time in the world, and nothing to do.” She kept busy, but it was very sedentary. TV watching. Smoking. Reading. Smoking. It was a time when old people were thought of as just “old.” Glad that as I’m entering into my “late 60s” that we no longer think that way. She was a very intelligent person, read a lot, and studied a great deal about World History. She was well versed in Roman times and Greek eras. She knew exactly where she wanted to go when one of her daughters went to Italy with her. Grandma may have only been on a plane ride once in her life, and here she was, flying to Italy with Aunt Judy. To be a fly on the wall! She enjoyed seeing things she only knew about by reading. She couldn’t walk very well, so many of the tours she stayed on the bus. At least she was there.

You Can Only Eat an Elephant
One Bite at a Time!

One step at a time is how I’ve had to live for over 25 years, since a medical emergency caused a large portion on my spine to be disassembled without reconstruction. I have lingering pain, scoliosis, fibromyalgia and a bunch of other stuff because of it, but in those 25 years, one step at a time, have been beautiful! We’ve traveled, I met the Babe, we married, so did four of our five kids, become grandparents, and have a lot to look forward to in each other’s company. I’m so lucky to have found someone who didn’t take my “slowness” as a problem. His mother had MS for many, many years. I loved to watch how he was with her. I experience that same kindness and love when I have a bad day. Which isn’t a lot (when I actually complain) but when I do, he usually knows by his observations than by me saying something. God’s been good to me.

After talking with my book coach yesterday, I am deep into researching my main character. What do I want her to convey? What is her weakness? What can she show the readers that they can learn from? What can I learn from her? I don’t have it written down, but by writing it, I’ll know if she’s working or not. Then the rest of the story may be told. I need to touch very deeply on her emotions about things. To show how she’s changed and grown. Sounds as if that’s a lot of deep, thoughtful work. I’m eager to do it.

I have also discovered where the “extra” words exist and what they’re about. I have saved the ideas, to see if they fit into anything I have written. If not, they may be useful for something else. I’m just glad to discover where they were and that I’m really not missing a lot in the story.

My character learns this in her life. Her most important lesson.

Today will be another Wednesday Night Hamburger Night at the Post. Their special is Chicken Fried Steak, a real crowd pleaser. I’m not a fan, but usually that menu item is really a top seller. It will be great to connect with our friends again. It was a long time we were away from each other!

I find the information available about the ongoing pandemic to be kind of confusing. It is we just stayed home to ease the hospital run on ventilators? So when we go out and if we become ill, they just have ventilators for all of us now? So we avoided it thus far, does it mean we’re safer now? Our Test Nebraska site allows you to make an appointment to be tested whether you are symptomatic or not. Should we all be tested? What do you all think? Comment below, I’d like to know your take on it. I shudder to think what will happen late in the fall and next winter.

My character needs to learn this during her journey.

I’m hoping we are able to get some plants in the next few days. The Babe constructed a nice wooden fence (with a small gate) to keep my new plants safe from a curious puppy. He is also building a cute bench for extra seating or holding flower pots. We’ll decide after it’s finished. The back is shaped into different sized bird house fronts. They’re painted different colors. Not sure if it will go on the patio or the front porch. It would fit there perfectly, or we could put it on the deck, too. This is what makes new things fun, figuring out where to put new things you have made. We have fun!

Thank you for reading today. I appreciate your time so much. I’ll be here again tomorrow, and I hope to see you then! Stay safe. Wash your hands. Help your neighbor, wear a mask. See you!