Super Sunday, 2022

I spent a good deal of the afternoon updating the website for the VFW Post 2503 the Babe is Quartermaster and Honor Guard Captain for. I hadn’t done any maintenance lately, so it was definitely time. Volunteer hours, spent at home on the couch, watching the Kansas City Chiefs game tend to fly by. And now, it’s nearly 6 p.m.

So, when do you take your Christmas tree down? Assuming it’s an artificial one? Mine is still up, but I expect it will be down by Saturday. My son Frankie is coming over for a late Christmas dinner tomorrow. He was working, and we went to our brother in law’s home, so it works out well. It’ll be good to spend some time just with him and see what’s going on in his life. He’s a blessing in my life. Always is happy. Always makes the best of whatever situation is going on. I hope to spend more time talking with him in 2022.

I’m pleased we might have found a new church. We’ll know after a few more visits, and we’ll visit a few more places, too. That’s something I’ve missed greatly, so now, that’s one big question answered. Of course, with my son sharing dinner with us tomorrow, I’ll be picking up the house (and dog sparkles), so I won’t do more than plan our calendar for the week, most likely. There is so much a creative person wants to do and it’s so hard to select exactly which few of a hundred projects can actually be completed.

When I became disabled with my back/spine issues in 2000, I purchased things to do (craft projects) that I know I’d like to do when I’m older. I’m just about to the 70s for the second time in my life, and I’m not old enough yet to do those things. I’m looking forward to unboxing all my collection of books after I deep clean our family room area downstairs, where it leads to the patio, and I want to find a good place to donate the ones I don’t want/can’t keep. I need to find out if the library of quilting books I have can be donated to the local high school or public library for kids to learn these skills that may soon be obsolete.

I have a quilt my grandma hand pieced in the 1920’s, before Mom was born in 1929. I think this quilt needs to be hand quilted, and I’m going to do it. If it takes 100 years to make a quilt, why not? I hope to leave it to our granddaughter in Colorado. I hope it has some meaning to her. I have two other quilts I want to make for this year; one is a snowflake quilt for our king-sized bed; the other is a pieced elephant quilt for our kind-sized bed. I also have a surprise for a friend of mine, and want to look for fun fabrics I may not have in my stash downstairs. If you quilt, it’s all about the fabric search!

My master plan will include time in January to prep for Income Tax Preparation. Although I do ours, this year, I may have business forms to file, too. It’s another thing to learn as we go along. If not, I know a couple of great CPA’s. Networking is everything.

So many people are complaining how bad 2021 was. With the strides we’ve made blogging, writing the novel, getting my Chapter 1 published in the Nebraska Writer’s Guild Anthology 2021, forming my LLC, I’m delighted with my part of 2021. Yes, there were some very bad things. We lost four friends last year; two to COVID, two to service-related illnesses during Vietnam. It really stunk. It would be easy to sink into the mindset of “life sucks.” Guess what?

We cannot let it win. We cannot let negativity reign over hope, trust, belief, and goodness How do you keep that in the forefront?

I look at my friends and family. With all the weddings during and after COVID, my cousin’s daughter and husband are expecting a little girl in February. And some special friends announced their engagement this weekend. Those are events that restore your faith, your hope, and your love. Those are events that remind you there is more positive in life than negative. There is always hope in a baby’s eyes; and a gleam in a couple’s eyes who view their Ever After in each other. I see it in the Babe. I hope he sees it in me. There is no other beyond him. We both wandered about, living our lives and making mistakes, before we met each other. God sure knows what He’s doing, right? Somehow, we find each other. Always.

May all of us have our Ever After. Barbara and Jimmy, a heartfelt congratulations to you both. Life is too short to wait too long. And too fragile to question too much. I nearly talked myself out of the Babe, first real nice guy I’d ever met; he had ischemic heart disease. I was certain he’d die on me. Not yet! No heart attack yet after 25 years! Fear can’t rule these times. Put your trust in each other, and you will not believe the places you will go – together. God Bless You!

Works of Art?

Eager as we are to kick an addiction, follow a Keto diet, get with an exercise routine, write a book, form new habits, change our bad habits, or change our direction in life, it’s hard work. I cannot stress that enough. It takes discipline, new habits, thought, learning to love yourself, and time, a precious commodity in today’s world to achieve it. Remember, we didn’t become an alcoholic, drug addict, overweight body, procrastinator, or an enabler overnight. Time is the hardest part. We gained weight one pound at a time. We got out of shape one Netflix binge at a time. We stop writing one hour at a time. We became self-loathing one year at a time.

If you skip one meal at a time and weigh yourself five times a day, you will not see progress. If you skip water for five days, you’ll end up dehydrated, not thinner. The body needs hydration more than food. Don’t try for a shortcut. You can create shortcuts on your Windows Desktop, not in life. Put in the work. The way to success lies there. I believe that is why we’re told to weigh only once a week.

It’s boring as heck, but consistent attention works. A diamond doesn’t form overnight. The pressure and heat turn graphite into diamonds. Again, it takes time. The conditions must be right. Same for writing, music, acting, change of any kind. At this point in my life, I get it. I’ll be 69 years old next week, on my birthday. The Babe will be 71 two days later. We will not have many more Do-Overs or Wake-Up-Calls. The whole gig of our lives could end. Anyones could, but statistically , older folks have greater odds of passing away before younger folks. Just sayin’.

Now, we’re not looking at life with doom and gloom. We know we’ve found many, many diamonds along the way. Each other. Our children. Our grandchildren. Our extended families. The Babe’s sobriety. Kindness from each other and friends. Our friends for sure. Wisdom that comes with age. Realizing what’s important in life and love. We are grateful, blessed, and thankful. We take our time. We enjoy. It’s taken us a lifetime to get here, and it’s great. Come along!

I look forward to what lies ahead. Almost finished plotting my narrative of my kid’s book. Then Cartney will work her magic. It’s going to be an exciting summer! I’m so glad you’re traveling this road with me. It’s more fun finding your way when friends join you. We’ve seen some good things, bad things, joyful things, and sad things. We’ll get there. Together. Thank you for reading! I’ll see you again tomorrow. Busy, fun weekend ahead! A wedding and a fundraiser. Blessed to celebrate and help! Billy McGuigan, thanks for such a great song to share. Google Billy for more music and tickets!

Merry Christmas, 2020!

My hope for you on this Christmas of this strange year is you are safe, warm, fed, and have plenty of books to enjoy. We are joining some very close relatives later for dinner, so it will be a nice celebration today. I hope you have a day of joy, too.

My last song of some favorites for Christmas is this one, “Christmas, Baby Please Come Home.” I can tell you it was a background for many, many late nights for me before Christmas back in the 1980s when I was a single Mom. My three kids and I were happy together, and I loved having things for them to open on Christmas morning.

Truth of the matter was, we were terribly broke all the time. I started putting things in layaway in October. I worked in Downtown Omaha, and the Woolworth’s store was still open. I paid weekly, a mere $5 weekly, and eventually got the goods out. I put them in the car at the parking garage across the street, then covered it all up with a blanket. Hard to conceal things in a station wagon.

I’d pick the kids up from their after school places, went home, we made dinner, watched tv while I studied, and then, I started wrapping everything when they went to bed. Sometimes it took until after midnight. Several nights in a row. I could always count on being entertained by the Late Show with David Letterman.

Just before the big day, he always had Darlene Love on to sing her famous Christmas song. I’ve always loved her voice, and learned her story just a few years ago. “Five Feet From Stardom is a documentary about what she was; a background singer. Genius Phil Spector stole her voice and marketed it as a white girl, but that’s another story.

This video is from Darlene’s last appearance on David Letterman, the last Christmas time he was on the air before retirement. It was magnificent. I had no gifts for the kids to wrap, so I just listened and remembered. Thanks for the memories, Darlene, and Dave, and Frankie, Nick, and Becky. You made my Christmases worth it. Much love to all of you and yours, know I love you all. Merry Christmas, everyone! Thanks for reading today, see you tomorrow!

Fun Friday!

No matter what, we always have some beautiful sights around us, and some outright gifts from God if we keep an eye open for them. Last night, the Babe had the monthly meeting at the VFW, and I stayed home with the dogs. I let them out for the last time later than usual, it was after dark. They’re usually done by 8:15 p.m. or so.

I’m so glad I went out with them. The lightening bugs were out like I haven’t seen in a long time. At first, the both just looked, trying to figure out what those strange things were. Finally, I coaxed Goldie to go down the steps and go potty. She just stood in a corner of the yard, looking up and around her at the wondrous sight. She opened her mouth and tried to catch a few, but missed. She kept tilting her head from side to side and frolicked, it made me smile down into my soul.

No, have no photos of it. It would have been way too dark, and besides, if we’re clicking away all the time, we miss half of life. That will be a memory for the old folks home someday. Goldie is such an addition to our home, I hope we have her for a long, long time.

It’s Never Too Late; Not Until They Throw Dirt Over You

I believe that sight was God telling me to get back with it. Today, I’m drafting a new Chapter 1 for “The Freeing of Katie Fitzgibbons.” I need some story about Katie’s world before the inciting event, it will be pretty much plain living up until then. So much about crafting and planning to learn. There is no “recipe” for a novel. You could follow convention and write according to someone else’s formula, but then it wouldn’t be my story, it would be theirs.

I’m going to start and see where it takes me. Hopefully, right where I want to go. There are surprises, though. Sometimes the characters take you places you didn’t know existed. I’m thinking this may happen with Katie’s story. I’ll let you know.

This morning, I went to Dulce Salon and Spa in Gretna and had a pedicure. Basic stuff, but it was so nice. The people are super nice, and I’ll definitely go back, that’s for sure. I rarely pamper myself, so it was a treat. They had a shop in Lincoln but closed it. They have been in Gretna for about eight years. And after the buffing, shaping, priming, painting, and massaging, I came home. As soon as Goldie was out of her kennel, she kept licking my toes. Dang, dog! It tickles! She makes me laugh all the time. I’m sure there were all sorts of scents for her to investigate. I just need to watch out so she doesn’t trip me up. Silly puppy.

October, 2019 Seems Like Such A Long Time Ago!

It sounds as if the weekend could be beastly hot. At one point through this week, I heard it could reach 100 degrees. That’s hot. The humidity is what’s oppressive when the temperature is up there. Thank goodness for Mr. Carrier, the inventor of air conditioning. I do not know how my dad slept during the day without A/C. Of course, eventually his workplace was air conditioned, but still. Wow.

With the changes to the name and logo of the Washington Redskins, there are some other businesses who are re-thinking their logos. Mutual of Omaha is one of them. I worked for them for ten years, and grew up knowing about Wild Kingdom, Marlin Perkins, Jim Fowler and the like. I thought it was named after Omaha, which is named for the Omaha Indians. Not a big deal.

Fast forward to 2020, and they are removing their Indian Chief logo. What in the hell?? What will you call the company now? It has called Omaha home for a very long time. I’m pretty disappointed with this move. Just curious, did they do away with the “Big Chief” writing tablet with the red cover on it? What about the FSU Seminoles? Have they made a move yet? The Atlanta Braves with the “chop, chop” motion while chanting? Kansas City Chiefs? Just won a Super Bowl and their name might be changed forever?

My opinion is changing all these names will not erase any bigotry people carry inside them. To me, it’s like putting a band aid on cancer. Looks good, but ineffective. Until the bigotry is erased from both non-white people AND white people;s hearts, we’ll never have peace.

Stay cool this weekend. Check on anyone you know who may not have a fan or A/C. Be Kind. Be Thoughtful. Be Courteous. Wash your hands, sanitize, wear your mask. I’m wearing one more now than ever before. It’s not a big deal, really. Thanks for reading today! I’ll see you right here again tomorrow. Be careful out there.