Night Thoughts

I once heard that the mind was a scary place….one should never go there alone. I’d like to add one should never go there alone at night.

Night time is when the heavy negativity hits, when problems invent and magnify themselves in seconds, and when speed bumps become mountains much too steep to climb. Every bad thing that has happened revisits and plays in slow motion. It’s when dreams become serpents chasing me in the darkness. I’d like to say it was caused by something I ate, but I didn’t eat anything. It’s just my mind playing cruel games in the dark. 

 To sleep deeply with the innocence of a child again, that would be amazing. To be free of stress and worry and wondering where the next blow is going to come from would be amazing, because it will. Someone will strike, it’s only a matter of when. And then someone will preach a mini sermon of how I’m not handing it over to God. Who are they to judge what they don’t know? They have no idea the conversations with God I have had, and know nothing about my faith, yet they judge swiftly and sharply.  They cut and stab with their words and feel righteous about doing it.

Maggie, my dog, sleeps beside me…deeply, innocently, with none of the troubles reserved for us humans.  Yet every so often even she will whimper in her sleep, and I wonder what she is dreaming.  Is a big dog chasing her?  Is she upset because I’ve gone to work? Is she fussing because she didn’t get a treat?

The darkness of night brings me no calm.  My thoughts run rampant and free.  Some nights I worry about North Korea, and some nights I worry about our own country and wonder why some people still cannot see what they’ve done by electing someone so undeserving to lead our country.  And still other nights I imagine a new life, free of worry, free of stress, filled with peace, quiet, and happiness.

So I put these thoughts down in the hope of clearing my head for sleep, replacing them with thoughts of beautiful gardens and gentle waterfalls.  Or maybe just a different life, one in which the garbage disposal works.

Sweet dreams.

Trish

Pew Thoughts

My faith has been a long journey.  I was not always a Christian, though I tried to be a good person.  I was taught right from wrong and a good understanding of respect for others.  My grandmother gave me a Bible of my own and I read it often, though I didn’t always understand.  It wasn’t until later in life I fully gave my heart to Jesus and accepted him as my Lord and Savior.

I always wanted to belong to a church, and I finally joined one in the small community I grew up in.  It was not my first choice for a church, but it was close and I knew some of the folks there were really good Christians.  Soon, I learned that even in church all was not perfect.  Soon, I learned the difference between Christians and pew dwellers.

We all sin, we all fall short, we all struggle.  Some admit it, some don’t.  It was difficult for me to accept that even Christians had serious flaws.  But I also knew Jesus healed the sinners and made them want to sin no more.  I knew I had to keep my eyes on Jesus, but sometimes I faltered and didn’t.  I was a sinner who needed healing.

I moved out of that community to return to my home.  I gave up on churches for a while.  I visited some other denominations, but none of them felt right.  Then one Sunday morning, I walked into my present church and knew I was home.

I volunteered, I attended every Sunday, I went to a Sunday School class.  Going to church was something I loved.  I loved God and the people in the pews.  There was nothing I liked better than to serve the Lord, and eventually I was hired as the Office Manager.  It felt right.

Fast forward seven years.  A series of heart breaking experiences within the church have questioned my belief in the “church” itself.  Oddly enough, my faith has grown stronger into a relationship with God that keeps my hope renewed.  He is my Rock.  Without him I am nothing.  He has picked me back up every time I have fallen.  My faith stays strong.  In the midst of dissension, God has given me grace and a stronger, deeper love for him.

Yet, I am struggling.  I have once again seen how human nature and the devil can sneak into a church and play havoc.  The devil is a sneaky bastard, make no mistake.  He’s crafty and mean, and he likes getting into the pews every Sunday.  He likes getting into the people sitting there, getting into their heads and hearts.

In my eyes, I am seeing a slow motion movie play before me.  The characters look familiar, they look like Christians, they say they’re Christians, but the stones are flying and no one is safe.  Slowly, they stone each other to death, and at the end of this movie, no one is standing.  I’m watching it play out before me and I don’t know how to stop it.  My body is bruised and bloodied from the fresh wounds of stones against my own flesh.  And I just stand there, waiting for the stones to stop, but they don’t.  I don’t know how to stop others from getting hurt, either.  There are just too many stones.

Sometimes I think there are too many pew dwellers; they outnumber the Christians 2:1.  The devil dances with them during sermons, whispering in their ears so they won’t hear the message from God.  He promises them pride, power, and a religion of their own making.  

I also know the devil does not like prayer.  He seeks to destroy those who call on God, those who praise God’s name.  Yes, that devil is crafty and mean, and he makes the pew dwellers crafty and mean, but he is no match for the power of prayer and God’s saving grace.  

So I pray.  There’s nothing else I know to do but pray.  I will pray for the pew dwellers, and I will pray for God’s people.  I will pray for unity and love and for the stones to stop being thrown.  I will pray for kindness, compassion, and forgiveness to replace all the stones being thrown.  I will pray for that Christian love like Jesus gave to us.

Wherever we are, whatever we’re doing, people are people.  We mess up, we fall down, we get back up, we forgive, we love, we hate, we fight, we laugh, we cry, and we do it all over again.  It is so easy to point the finger at someone else and blame the troubles of the world, and the church, on them.  

I’m praying for a church I can call home again.  Where I feel safe, loved, and respected.  I believe it can happen.  With God, all things are possible.

My faith journey has only begun.
Take care of you.

Trish

The Handshake

Just yesterday, I posted something on Facebook about acts of kindness, some examples of acts I thought were kind, like replacing an empty roll of toilet paper, changing a lightbulb for someone who cannot climb, and a few others.  I asked for the thoughts of folks on what they considered acts of kindness, but no one responded.

Today, while working at the church, I was shown an act of kindness that took me by surprise, and it warmed my heart.

A young man came into the church office and sat down.  It is not unusual for strangers to come into the church and I was studying him as he sat down across from me, on the opposite side of my desk.  Often, I have an immediate sense in someone’s presence whether I should be fearful or not.  I felt no fear of him.

During our conversation, he mentioned he liked our church, he really liked our Sanctuary.  I shared with him of the first time I walked into our Sanctuary and immediately a warm feeling came over me that I was home, and I invited him to visit us some Sunday.  He shared the name of the church he was presently attending, of which I was vaguely familiar with.  Then he thanked me for my time and as he was walking out the door, he said, “I will come back to visit some Sunday.”  Normally when someone tells me that, I think nothing of it.  But I believe he meant it.

Now, here’s the part that took me by surprise.  He must have gotten about half way to the front door when he turned around and came back to the office and asked, “What is your name?”  I told him it was Trish and he walked over to me with hand extended and said, “My name is _____, and I am glad to meet you.”

Wow.

This stranger took the time to ask my name and shake my hand.  I know it sounds like something so small, but it seemed so kind at the time.  It was a “moment” that made my day.  Someone took a moment out of their day to know my name.

Maybe too often we don’t do kind things because we think it’s going to take a lot of effort, or cost too much money, or take too much time.  With just a few seconds, a few words, and a handshake, a positive difference was made to my day.  I’m still smiling inside.

Take a moment to be kind to someone.

Blessings
Please feel free to share this post with others who may be blessed by it.

Movies I Can’t Stop Watching

I confess, I love movies.  I love how they can entertain, transport me into another time and place, send my emotions in spirals, and cheer me up when I’m feeling down.  There’s nothing I like more on an “I’m not feeling great” day than to line up my favorite DVD’s and have a moviethon from the comfort of my easy chair.  Here are a few of my favorites, in no certain order:

chocolat-movie

  1. Chocolat:  I love the cinematography of this film.  The characters are unique and interesting and I always have hope at the end that all is well.  And let’s face it, Johnny Depp is a pleasure in this movie.
  2. Funny Farm:  Chevy Chase’s character as a newspaper writer buying a home in the country to live the life of an author and write a book just fires up my own dreams of doing the same.  It’s funny, and it brings back warm memories of my mom and I watching it together and having a good laugh at all the things that happened while he was living the dream.
  3. You’ve Got Mail:  Meg Ryan and Tom Hanks are always good together.  The romantic part of me likes the idea of two people meeting and falling in love online.  The practical side of me says, “Don’t do it!”  But it’s a lovely movie and I adore the apartment Meg’s character lives in.Baby_boom_1987
  4. Baby Boom:  One of my all time favorites.  I love how Diane Keaton doesn’t let being knocked down by disappointments keep her down, how her priorities change, and the move to a house in Vermont is my idea of a beautiful life.
  5. While You Were Sleeping:  Who doesn’t like a Sandra Bullock movie?  It’s cute, romantic, and fun.
  6. An Unfinished Life:  When you pair up Robert Redford, Morgan Freeman, and Jennifer Lopez in a movie, it’s gotta be a good thing.  It’s not for those loving an action-packed film, but it’s a good movie about life and how circumstances can change in a heartbeat.
  7. Pretty Woman:  This was the very first movie I went to by myself at a movie theater.  Although it definitely seems a fantasy to me, it is fun to watch and dream.  Julia Robert’s character is charming and likeable, as is Richard Gere’s.  And I truly loved the Hotel Manager, Hector Elizondo.
  8. Fletch:  Chevy Chase again in his prime.  It’s fun, with a bit of mystery.
  9. Fletch Lives:  Same as above.
  10. Sleepless in Seattle:  Meg Ryan and Tom Hanks in another sweet romance.  It just makes you want to love both of them all over again.
  11. The Pelican Brief:  While the adaptation from book to movie did disappoint me a little, I still enjoy watching it.  A bit of a thriller, it kept me on edge.
  12. The Fugitive:  Harrison Ford…need I say more?The_Fugitive_movie
  13. Clear and Present Danger:  See #12.
  14. Steel Magnolias:  Fantastic cast, interesting and unique characters, and makes me feel good at the end.  It follows the relationship between friends and shows the strength of women.
  15. Sleeping With the Enemy:  Julia Roberts as an abused wife, this movie sheds a little light on the fact that appearances can be deceiving.  I love the life she carved out for herself after leaving him, and the ending always makes me smile.

What are your favorite films?  Do you share any of these?

 

Blessings

My Ex-Anniversary Celebration

13239089_1060769970626766_8569802778752923799_nMay 20th, 1978, at just shortly after 7:00pm, I married my high school sweetheart beneath the maple tree in our backyard.  It was a beautiful May evening, warm and sunny.  The wedding was very simple.  Two yellow potted mums sat on either side of where the preacher stood in front of the tree trunk.  My dad, dressed in his one and only brown suit, walked me across the porch, down the steps, and handed me over to the groom, quite eagerly it seemed to me.

The ceremony was short.  A bird pooped on his aunt’s head in the middle of it.  I thought everyone was laughing at us, that the dress I had sewn myself must have been coming apart at the seams or my tomato red sunburn from the day before was causing too much of a glow.  But it was soon over and I wouldn’t find out about the bird until much later.  I thought I would live happily ever after from that day forward.  That was my plan, anyway.  That was the fairy tale.

The trouble began just a few hours later, after the reception.  We couldn’t go on a honeymoon because we were both unable to take time off work, so we spent our first night together at the Uptowner Inn.  He was upset with me.  He said I stayed at the reception too long.  I said it was the only wedding reception I would ever have.  He said he was hot, I should have known.  And the next time he tells me he wants to leave, I’d better leave.  I’d better get things straight right then and there.  I spent my wedding night crying.  Things weren’t going the way I had planned.  This wasn’t the fairy tale I had imagined.

And so it went for the next eleven years.  His drinking was non stop.  At times there were drugs, but I’m not certain how long or at what frequency it happened.   The control, the anger, the abuse all escalated.  There were holes in the walls of our mobile home.  Plates of food had been thrown against the kitchen wall because he didn’t like what was served.  Dishes broken.  Glasses thrown and broken.  I was constantly walking on eggshells, never knowing what I might say or do that would set him off on one of his temper tantrums.   He kept a loaded pistol beneath his side of the bed.  It was a not so subtle threat.  There was absolutely nothing I could do right.  He would hurt me in any way he could.  My punishments were frequent.  For weeks he would give me the silent treatment, until he wanted sex, and then he was all loving again.  He reeked of beer and barbeque pork rinds.  The night before my brother died, he tried to kick me out of the house because I hadn’t been home from the hospital to do the dishes.  I was too tired to go and begged to stay until morning.  By morning,  Joey had passed away.  He bought me a new TV to make me feel better.  I was being a bitch because I was crying all the time.  And then my dad died, and it was all about how hard it was on him.  Somehow, that was all my fault, too.

It was a secret life I kept to myself.  First of all, who would believe me?  He was a good guy.  He’d never do anything like that.  And if he did, it had to be that I drove him to it.  The pain ran deep inside me and what little self esteem I had was no longer existent.  Then one night around 2:00am when I was home alone and he was out drinking or with his girlfriend, I was crying and screaming into my pillow, asking God what I should do, praying like a woman who had nothing else to lose, God answered my prayers.  I still remember this intense calm that came over me, inside me.  It was overwhelming.  My tears stopped.  I felt God’s presence in every fiber of my being, and He told me it was time to go, that I could do it.  He would be with me through it all.  He did not want me to live a life of fear and pain.

When I filed for divorce the next morning, I cried the entire time I was speaking to the attorney.  I asked if he could make it happen quick, and since it was uncontested, it did happen pretty quick.  But then I had to tell my family, and it wasn’t easy.  My mother even told me things would have been different if I had stayed at home instead of working, if I had taken better care of him.  If I had raised a family.   If I had been a good wife.  He was supposed to have told his mother and family about the divorce, but didn’t, and his mother had to read about it in the newspaper.

I moved to a little one bedroom apartment with my cat, Tuffy, on July 1st, 1989, two weeks after I had filed for the divorce.  I couldn’t get into the apartment I had leased before then.  He had ran over Tuffy with his truck a few weeks earlier when he came home drunk.  Tuff survived, got patched up, and I promised him a better life.  At that point, he had already beaten a dog I had owned, killed a kitten, and now he was going after my Tuffy.  I didn’t care if he killed me, I was leaving and Tuff was going with me.  It meant selling my horse, but I finally had the strength to get out of there, and it had to be done.  The night of July 4th, I could see some of the fireworks in Parkersburg from outside my apartment.  It seemed a bright light, a sign of a better future.  Later, when Martina McBride came out with the song Independence Day, I would think of that night.

My soon-to-be Ex found where I was living and showed up at the apartment to try to rape me.  I screamed.  There were workers outside the apartment, so he left.  It was odd, because he had been cheating on me for a long time, yet he didn’t want to let me go completely, he still wanted that control.  I still couldn’t do anything right.  He would call me on the phone and complain that people were spreading rumors about him, that he was a drunk.  I told him the rumors weren’t started by me, I hadn’t told anyone anything.  But he was certain it was all my fault.  In his mind, even the rain was my fault.  August 10th, 1989, the divorce was final.  I was free.

Now, I’d like to say the healing was quick and easy and all things wonderful within weeks.  That would be a lie.  I spent decades trying to get over the pain and damage the marriage had caused me.  There are parts of that life that will forever haunt me.  But I kept going, finished night classes at college, and kept putting one foot in front of the other.  A year after the divorce, I bought a house.  It was something I had always dreamed of.  It didn’t happen in the way I had planned, but it happened the way God planned.  And I did it on  my own.  He again found me and showed up on my doorstep a handful of times.  It’s one of the reasons I do not answer my door today when someone knocks.

Today is my EX-Wedding anniversary.  I have chosen to celebrate this day with joy, because I want to.  I’m doing what I want to.  I’ve worked today, which I enjoy.  I purchased a couple beautiful magazines to look at when I get home, and that’s a guilty pleasure I have not done in years.  He always hated when I read or looked like I was enjoying myself.  So I bought myself a bottle of nail polish, too.  OPI Cajun Shrimp, because I love polishing my nails.  And I’m going to pick up a Garden Patch pizza from Napoli’s on the way home, because I love it.  And I’m going to celebrate my life of freedom from the pain and abuse by spending it with my little dog, Maggie, and my Jonnie Katt, because I love them dearly and I know they love me.  They love me unconditionally.  Sure as anything, I believe that’s why God placed pets into my life, because they can love unconditionally, like humans cannot.

I did not intend this post to be what it is.  I was going to make some light hearted attempt at showing how I don’t need anyone and I can celebrate this day without any pain or memories.  That’s not quite true, and it seems my story needed to be told today.  But this I know is true, I have survived, and I will continue to survive, because I put my trust in my Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.  And that is how I get from one day to the next.  It is how I can celebrate this day with JOY!

If you are a survivor, or if you know of someone who needs to read this story, please share it.

 

Blessings

 

 

 

 

Sneezing and Other Scary Signs of Aging

10647242_739465662757200_3738853354570463578_nThere’s that moment, when you’re driving and know you’re within ten minutes of your house and sure you can wait to pee until you get there, so much better than using a public restroom….and then you sneeze.

There’s that other moment, when you walk into the kitchen to get something out of the refrigerator, and you stand with the refrigerator door open long enough to get goose bumps under your nightie trying to figure out what you wanted.  You don’t really see anything in there you need.  You’re not really hungry.  Nothing looks appetizing.  So you shut the door and go back into the living room to finish watching The Voice, and you reach for your beverage…..and there’s nothing there.  Must have been a Diet Coke that you needed out of that refrigerator.  Too tired to go back and get it now.  Waiting on the next commercial break seems prudent.  Same for going to the bathroom.  And then you sneeze.

You’re eating alone when all of a sudden something doesn’t go down quite right and the coughing spasms of choking come on strong and urgent, and you cough and cough so hard you think your eyes are going to pop out of your head….and then you sneeze.

Ladies, can we be frank for a moment?  This getting older thing has its advantages.  AARP has a few benefits and discounts that I don’t mind admitting my age to take advantage of.   For the most part, I’m way beyond caring what anyone thinks about me anymore.  They can talk about me, judge me, and turn their snooty little noses up in the air as they walk by and I will just shake my head.  I’m more accepting of my short comings, usually, and most of the time I’m pretty accepting of the quirky behaviors of others, unless it goes beyond quirky into downright mean, sick, and deranged.  There’s no excuse for that.  I no longer care who has the best looking hair, wears the prettiest clothes, or check labels to see what designer they have caressing their buttocks.  The petty peer pressure of my youth is a distant memory.  Should someone decide they would like to be my friend, yet seem to derive pleasure from insulting and ridiculing me, they will not be my friend.  At my age, I’m OK with dumping people who aren’t really my friends.  Yes, it’s one of the perks of being in my 50’s.  I can ignore the best snooty people I know.

But then there are those other things that are not quite so pleasant.  Like peeing my pants when I sneeze.   That’s just not kosher.  Like forgetting where I put my grocery list while I’m walking around the house with it in my hand.  Like not remembering if I took my medication or not.  Like not being able to walk without intense pain that brings tears to my eyes and knees that snap, crackle, and pop so loud I’m certain everyone around me is wondering what that noise is.  I have to gauge the height of the couch seat at someone’s home to guess whether I will be able to get back up off it.  Long drives are mostly a thing of the past because of the pain and stiffness of arthritis and fibromyalgia.  To be honest, these things just plain suck.

I’ve decided it’s just a play off to get older.  I have to give up certain things, like my mobility and memory, in order to enjoy the benefits, like being more comfortable with my likes and dislikes.  Is it worth it?  I’m not sure.  I suppose the alternative would be that I’m dead and gone and wouldn’t have to worry about any of it, which wouldn’t necessarily be a bad thing, but I don’t think God is quite ready for me, yet.  I’ve still got some unfinished business here on earth, like trying to give myself a pedicure this weekend.  I’m getting nervous just thinking about it.  Will I be able to do it?  Can I bend that far and that long?  I’m pretty sure I can at least soak my feet in some delightfully scented foot bath.  That’s a start.

Adjustments will need to be made, like longer handled nail files and foot scrubbers.  Long handled scrubbers to wash my back.  A bench in the shower.  And that’s kind of how it is.  Each year, I have to make more and more adjustments to get me through to the next year.  I’m not overly anxious to see what kind of adjustments I will be making the next ten years.  But if the good Lord doesn’t call me home first, I’ll make the adjustments.  That’s just how the old life bounces.  But I still think it kind of sucks.  Now, if I can just figure out how to remember where that “safe place” is I keep losing things in.

How are you handling aging?  With eagerness and a sense of fun?  Or with a bit of dread?

Blessings.

 

Tried and Convicted in the Grocery Line


Have you ever been behind someone in the grocery line the first couple days of the month…they’re purchasing a LOT of food. And then, it looks like they’re paying with “food stamps” or whatever they call it these days, and your eyes immediately rake over their food choices. Are they buying healthy food, or junk? Sugared cereals, or healthy grains? Expensive cuts of meat, or cheap hot dogs? I’ve done that. I’m guilty. And I am ashamed for having done that. It’s none of my business.
I’ve had people make comments about what is in my grocery cart when I’m in the grocery store.  Well meaning friends scrutinize my choices.  The check out clerk might make a comment about some of my foods.  It’s none of their business, and I find it embarrassing to have that done in the grocery line.

Often times, that person using food stamps is a young mother with one or more kids in tow. That’s none of my business either. I don’t know what kind of road she has had to travel to get where she is right now.  I don’t know her circumstances, whether she has a chronic illness and is unable to work, cannot find a job, or has just made a series of poor decisions.  Who hasn’t made poor decisions in their lifetime?  Who am I to be making any kind of judgment about her life?

What I don’t understand is if we don’t have some sort of public assistance in our country, who is going to take care of those who cannot take care of themselves?  Yes, I realize the system is taken advantage of by some and it was never meant to be a career choice or lifestyle.  But what about those who genuinely cannot take care of themselves?  What if it was your sister?  Your grandmother?  Your brother?

I hear folks get very heated over this, over “welfare”,  and label everyone who uses it as a bum who should get a job.  There’s a lot of stone throwing by folks who call themselves Christian, too.  This saddens me, because I don’t think that’s what being a Christian is all about.  And if you don’t feel led to help someone, fine, but don’t label everyone who needs help buying groceries.  This is where love and compassion for our fellow man might be put to good use.

I really try not to judge, but I often fall short.  I’m a sinner who is far from perfect.  I also know it is only by the grace of God that I am not on public assistance.  I do not take grocery money for granted.  I don’t mind my tax dollars helping those who need help.

For those taking advantage or cheating the system, I’ll let God do that judging in his own time.  In the meantime, I will try to keep my nose out of other folks grocery carts.  It’s none of my business.

Blessings

An Introvert’s Saturday Night

13092171_1049850765052020_9125567350055287945_nIt’s another Saturday, the last Saturday of April 2016.  It’s Spring time and many people are celebrating better weather (though it’s a bit chilly and dreary today here) and spending time outdoors with family, cookouts, and picnics.  Or maybe going out to a club or having dinner at a nice restaurant with a group of friends.

And then there’s another group of people, each of us celebrating our Saturday night’s alone, apart from the crowds and noise, and in our own ways.  Welcome to my Saturday night; an Introvert’s Saturday Night.

  • 6:00pm have nightshirt on.
  • 6:05pm let Maggie outside.  Stay inside the garage so neighbors don’t see me in nightshirt.  Feed Jonnie Katt so he can eat in peace without Maggie.  Hold and pet the boy while he purrs.
  • 6:20pm or thereabouts, Maggie comes back inside, tongue hanging out, hot from running all around the yard, feet wet and cold.  Jumps on me so I can get the full effect of the cold, wet feet.
  • 6:23pm give Maggie her supper.
  • 6:30pm Google what shows are on the three channels I get on TV tonight.  Notice there’s nothing worth watching.
  • 6:32pm check Facebook.
  • 6:35pm drag out my Art Journal and colored pencils or pens and doodle.
  • 7:30pm notice my doodling is not improving and looks like child’s play but don’t care.  I’m OK with never being an artist.   It’s my doodle.
  • 7:35pm pick out a DVD to watch.  Tonight, it will be Spenser for Hire, Season 1, Episode 2.  After all these years, Spenser and Hawk are still cool dudes.  Maggie snuggles up close and goes to sleep.
  • 7:37pm check Facebook.
  • 8:30pm let Episode 3 play of Spenser for Hire while reading a chapter of Unstuffed, by13139192_1049850411718722_8024304825355673105_n Ruth Soukup.  I make notes and highlight text.   Maggie snuggles against me and snores.
  • 9:30pm hope is renewed that I can get rid of “stuff.”
  • 9:31pm check Facebook.
  • 9:35pm feeling hungry and open the bag of White Cheddar Popcorn I brought home, accompanied by some ice cold Diet Coke.
  • 11:35pm wake up after having fallen asleep with my hand in the popcorn.  It’s sticky.  At the same time I notice my nose itches and wipe my sticky fingers across my nose.
  • 11:40pm turn the TV on to see who’s on Saturday Night Live.  Watch for a few minutes.  If nothing they say makes me angry, I’ll watch for maybe half an hour.  If they make me mad, like making a joke about God, then I’ll turn it off.
  • Midnight turn off the TV and start reading whatever book I’m reading from my Kindle.
  • 12:15am check Facebook.
  • 12:17am resume reading.
  • 12:30am out of popcorn and fall asleep, if I’m lucky.

And there you have it.  My wild and crazy Saturday night.  And I like it like that.

If you’re single and alone, how do you spend your Saturday night?

 

Blessings.

Beauty in my Eyes

We all have our own ideas of beauty.  What catches your eye may slip right by mine.  How do I define beauty?  I’m not exactly sure.  I know it when I see it, though.

12994311_1040268042676959_7205009825890081950_nPlanners and notebooks in both bright colors and basic black catch my eyes.  Throw in a pretty, comfortable writing instrument and I am in my element, floating high on a writer’s cloud.  It’s just paper, you might be thinking.  Oh no!  It’s not just paper!  It is the recipient of my thoughts and dreams.  It is the listening ear of my troubles and sorrows.  It rejoices with me when I share joys of the days or conversations with friends.  It is my traveling companion and my confidante on sleepless nights.  These notebooks have a heartbeat of their own, in my eyes.

No, I cannot really define my idea of beauty, but I can tell you my friends are beautiful.  All of them.  Each one in 303233_2397092091761_1825382099_ntheir own special and unique way.  Take my friend, Piccadilly the Clown.  Isn’t she absolutely gorgeous!  But be assured there is much more than what catches the eyes.  Her beauty runs deep, shares laughter, instigates smiles, and warms hearts with her love of people and God.  She is generous.  She shares of herself and expects nothing in return and that, my friends, is beautiful.

12987067_1040266269343803_264469149487097492_nMakeup is beautiful.  Oh my gosh, the colors are all over the place!  Put a pretty lipstick and blush in a bright, shiny makeup bag and I’m ready to step out the door into the light.  Some black mascara on the eyelashes frames the soulful eyes of a woman, and can brighten the sad eyes that cried the night before.  Strategically placed color on a woman’s face can change her mood from “all hope is gone” to “I can face anything!”  A little lipstick on these pale lips can mean the difference from someone telling me I look sick all day, to telling me I look like I feel better.  Oh yes, makeup is beautiful.

Have you ever sat down to eat feeling ravenous, looked at 13001267_1040268329343597_7368945132206482458_nyour food, and then all of a sudden lost your appetite?  I love salads, but if they look a mess with everything just thrown in with no thought, I don’t love them so much.  But I LOVE a pretty salad!  I love pretty food!  With each topping in its own special place on top of that lettuce, it’s a beautiful thing.  The mixture of colors, textures, and tastes can make the difference between just eating and really enjoying my food.  And let’s face it, we have to eat.  We might as well eat for the joy and beauty of it!

Certain colors are sure to catch my eyes.  Pinks and purples will snatch their attention every time.  I love bright colors in the Spring and Summer.  They make me feel happy and full of hope.  The days go smoother when there is a joyful color in them.  12990889_1038006399569790_3297011779775416156_nAnd if that joyful color happens to be on my handbag, I am one joyful woman.  A handbag is useful, yes.  It can be a workhorse, an accessory, a compliment to a pair of shoes.  But add a splash of color to it and it becomes a work of art.  Magenta.  I waited weeks for this color handbag to arrive.  It’s so beautiful I’m almost afraid to pack it with me fearing that something might happen to it, that it will become covered in grease or tomato sauce or stolen by an art thief.  But as I said, almost.  It will not be nearly as beautiful sitting on a shelf in my closet, or housed in a dust bag.  To really enjoy it, it needs to be close by, in my hands where I can touch it, and let it carry that beautiful purple cosmetic bag full of pretty makeup.  It all goes together.  Beauty builds upon beauty.  It all has its’ place.

Of all the beauty in all the world, there’s nothing more beautiful to me than my fur Maggie3family.  Maggie is beauty in my eyes.  She is warm, wiggly, sassy, and smart.  She lives and breathes beauty around me.  She is full of love and spunk and occasional treats.  Her ears have been torn and have ragged edges, but that just adds to her character and charm.  She snorts and snores and reminds me in the night that I am not alone.  She adopted me and saved my life.  There is nothing more beautiful in my eyes.

What is beauty in your eyes?  Take time today to look around you.  There is beauty in the everyday.  There is beauty in our chores and in our play times.  God has created beauty all around us, if we will only take a few moments to see it.

Blessings.

12 Pet Peeves

Wikipedia’s description of a pet peeve is:  A pet peeve or pet hate is a minor annoyance that an individual identifies as particularly annoying to himself, to a greater degree than others may find.

  We’ve all got them, some more than others.  Those annoying little habits or actions that absolutely make us want to tear our hair out.  They make our blood pressure rise and our heart rhythm falter.

A friend described a few of his to me tonight.  I told him I was having trouble deciding on what to write for my blog.   It didn’t hit me until about 15 minutes later…hey!  I can jot down some of my pet peeves!  (Thank you for being my inspiration tonight, Chuck). You may even share some of these.

  • Drivers who drive way too close to my bumper.  This does not make me drive faster.  It does, in fact, make me drive slower.  It’s a bit of passive aggressiveness in me.
  • People who have no respect for my work space at work.  If it’s not yours, don’t touch it.  If you do touch it, put it back the way you found it.  Wipe away all fingerprints or I will hunt you down like a hound after a fox.
  • People who stare at me in public places.  I do realize many cannot handle my size of awesomeness, but try to be polite.  It’s rude to stare.
  • Drivers who don’t turn on their turn signals before turning.  It’s both inconsiderate and unsafe.
  • Those little plastic bags in the produce section of the grocery store.  Am I the only one who can never get those things open?
  • Ordering a chicken sandwich and a Diet Coke at the drive thru and receiving a bacon cheeseburger, fries, and regular Coke instead.  Go ahead, try to kill the diabetic with carb overload.
  • Books and movies in which the family pet dies.  There is just no excuse for that.
  • People who make comments about what I’m eating at social functions, especially those who think they know everything about diabetes, but clearly do not.  I have a medical team to give me advice about my food, thank you very much.  And even if I didn’t, it’s none of your business.
  • Children who poke different parts of my anatomy with their finger.  I’m not a marshmallow or a bowl of Jell-O.
  • No toilet paper in a public restroom.  ‘Nuff said.
  • Facebook posts that say something like, “And you’ll never believe what he did next!”  They entice you to find out what he said, but when you click on the link, there are so many ads you can’t find the answer to what he said.
  • Drivers who pick their noses while driving.  You’re not invisible, we can see you.

Those are only some of my pet peeves.  I’m sure I will have more as we get closer to Christmas.  The holidays tend to magnify whatever quirks we may have.

What are your pet peeves?

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Blessings