For the past two months I have suffered terribly from allergies. The nasal stuffiness has finally subsided, but for the past month, my eyes have been under attack. Because I’m so miserable, every few days (ok, maybe daily) I voice my disgust with all of those lovely trees popping and flowers blooming and my husband says, “Maybe it’s pink eye.” And I reply, a little more annoyed each time, “It’s NOT pink eye.”
A few years ago my daughter began coloring to relax and wind down from stress. At first she printed black and white images from the internet. They were mostly mosaics and geometric designs. Shortly after that I saw an interview on tv with an artist who put together her own line of adult coloring books as a stress reducing activity. They were pricey, but they were beautiful images on higher quality paper than traditional children’s coloring books.
Fast forward two years and these books are everywhere in every price range. While grocery shopping a few weeks ago, I saw a coloring book of scenes based on Deborah Macomber novels. I haven’t read anything by her recently, but I remember her books were great beach reads or on snowy winter afternoons. I flipped through the book and decided to give coloring a whirl. Just looking at the serene pictures had a calming effect. I haven’t pursued a hobby in years, and surely I could benefit from stress reduction even though I didn’t really need more distractions. Continue reading “They Call Me Mellow Yellow”→
Usually I notice this sign on my way to the office each morning. I guess it’s posted for safety, or more likely, as a legality. I can see someone peddling along, not paying attention, on their phone no doubt. The next thing they know, they’ve landed in the adjacent field with a bent bike rim and a broken iphone. It’s a lawsuit waiting to happen.
The other day, another thought occurred to me. Just because you’re riding along and the path you’re on ends, it doesn’t mean the ride is over. Nor does it mean you have to go back the way you came. It simply means you need to find a new path. It may take longer; it may not be smooth, but it could take you places that you wouldn’t have seen had the first path continued, or you simply gave up and turned around.
Then I realized that that pretty much sums up life, (I tend to get awfully philosophical alone in my car.) Just because your planned path doesn’t work out, you don’t stop whether it’s a career choice, a job you hate, or a relationship that just is not working for you any more. You just may need to find a new direction. The important point to remember is, you can’t move forward if you’re standing still. You shouldn’t allow an obstacle block your forward movement.
Long time readers of this blog, may remember a few years back I published a Kindle book. It wasn’t intricate and didn’t involve tons of research, but the amount of time it took to make it presentable with extensive proofreading and edits was overwhelming. I’m still not sure I will ever attempt such a project again.
So when someone I know tackles something difficult and tedious and does it well, I’m happy for him and want to share it with others.
I just finished reading Robert Vall’s second novel and thoroughly enjoyed it. In A Bronze Wall: The Prophet of War, he tells the story of Father Jeremiáš Láska, a young Catholic priest, living in Czechoslovakia during the early 1900s. Called to duty as Special Envoy by President Tomáš Masaryk he is at first reluctant, but soon realizes it is not his choice to make.
The story follows Hitler’s rise and ultimately, ignites the start of World War II. While a work of fiction, it is weaved into actual historical circumstances. For me it established more of an understanding of an important time that I realized that I didn’t really know all that much about. It also brought a connection to the many stories I’ve listened to over the years by my father-in-law who in fact experienced this history firsthand while a boy, living in Poland during the 1930s.
If this sounds like a compelling story to you, I’ve provided a link to his Amazon page.
An unfamiliar phone number showed up on the caller id the other day and left a message. Upon retrieving it, I was surprised to discover it was a call from Costco. Apparently there was a recall on a product that we often buy. I was disheartened to hear that it involved the industrial sized bags of organic mixed vegetables because of possible Listeria contamination.
I checked the freezer, but discovered we used up the last bag purchased. I had no concerns about my family’s safety, because I buy this product for my dog and she appears to be in good health. What did concern me was the date of the recall. Continue reading “Is Anything Safe For Human Consumption?”→
Scrapbooks line a bookshelf in our rarely used living room. Each reflect the many hours of work that went into assembling each page. They are filled with precious memories of the past 30 years. Birthdays, holidays, vacations, trips to the park. Someone viewing our idyllic family photos could presume we were the image of a model family. Everyone is happy, smiling, enjoying day-to-day life. The girls often dressed in matching or complimentary outfits, with their hair combed, they appear to be perfectly behaved angels.
During the holiday season, we often watch classic movies, It’s A Wonderful Life,Miracle on 34th Street,The Santa Clause. Then inevitably someone suggests we watch home movies. It is, at that moment, we become The Griswalds or the Home Alone family. Continue reading “The Illusion Of Serenity”→
Needing to pick up some things from the grocery store I decided yesterday was my best option. I typically work from home most Fridays and I normally save shop then. And I try to avoid doing it on the weekends unless it’s only for a few things. My dog has been out of sorts all week with my husband away on business and my having to go into the office, so I wanted to spend the entire day at home.
The first “take a deep breath” moment when I was in the Asian/Mexican food aisle. I was searching for a very specific sauce I needed for a new recipe. As I tried to concentrate and read all the labels, two women (presumably mother and daughter) discussed the proper way to make tostadas. This inane conversation went on forever as “Gavin” first ran up and down the aisle, then began doing “donuts” in the middle of the aisle. As he spun in circles, somehow miraculously not knocking anything off of the shelves or us over, I wanted to scream “the typical tostada is comprised of refried beans, spread on a flat shell, sprinkled with seasoned meat of your choice, topped with shredded cheese. Upon heating it up in the microwave just enough to melt the cheese, top with sour cream, shredded lettuce and diced tomato. And Gavin, dammit stop it! Boom. Done. Now please vacate this aisle so I can think in peace.” But I didn’t say anything. I just simply waited until they left on their own accord.
Next up, the meat counter for burgers. The woman in front of me was taking forever. Everything she ordered, was accompanied by a special request. “The filets. Can you wrap them in packages of two, and can you make sure to wrap them properly so I can freeze them when I get home? I want 4 lobster tales, but can please split the shells and wrap them separately? The ribs. I want two slabs, but can you remove the membrane from the back?” Mind you this is not a specialty butcher, it’s just a meat counter.
Just as I was about to doze off, when a second person came from the back to help with the rest of us waiting in line. “Three bacon burgers and three regular cheeseburgers, please,” and “wrap them any damn way you want,” Had they only had burgers in the regular coolers I could have avoided all of this. Continue reading “Sometimes You Just Need To Breathe Deeply”→