Anything is Possible!

With Love, Hope, and Perseverance


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Sunset Skies

I’ll be cutting back on my blogging over the next couple of weeks to give more time to family,  household projects, and writing. But I still plan to drop in for Stream of Consciousness Saturday and Good News Tuesday.

Here are some photos I took this month at the inlet.

Happy Summer!
clouds in pnk over dunes

Yeah, I might have enhanced this color just a little.

dune shadows

I always wanted long legs. Ta da!

Dave and osprey in clouds

I believe that’s an osprey up in the clouds.

bird incoming

A Black Skimmer Coming back to the Sanctuary

pink clouds and line of sea oats

Sea Oats Waving in the Breeze

sea oats on sand dune at dusk

Yes, I really like sea oats.

pink clouds and matching wave lines

I like how the lines in the water and sky compliment each other.

pink dancing tornado cloud

This cloud reminds me of a tornado. But it’s not.

sunset PINK with yellow

I did not enhance these last two.  This is how the sky looked!

sunset scarlet with bird

You never know what God’s going to paint in the sky to say, “I love you.”

 


19 Comments

Supper, Dinner, and Our Second First Date

SOC winner 2017

Today’s Stream of Consciousness Saturday prompt is, “sup.”

Supper is what you have at home in the evening. That’s what my dad called it. He called lunch, dinner. It was a little confusing, since it seems like most people call the mid-day meal lunch and the evening meal dinner. But for dad, lunch was dinner, at least when I was a kid. “When I was a child,” Mom would say, because, “Kids are baby goats.”

Sup has also been used as a verb, as in “Come sup with us.”  I had to go look that up to be sure. It seems to refer to sipping a drink. But it works with eating supper, too. Sup also stands for stand up paddling. As in a boat, or paddle board. Not getting paddled like they did when I was in Jr High school. I don’t even want to go there. And of course there’s the slang for for “What’s up?”

Supper is not what we had on our second first date. Seven years ago, I was anticipating a dinner date with my long lost love.  He found me on Facebook in June of 2011 after 39 years of no contact. He did not say, “Sup?”

On July 15, 2011, he drove down to North Carolina from Connecticut to take me out to dinner. We went to a cozy pub called Paddy’s Hollow with brick walls and soft Tiffany lamps. We talked about the 39 years since our last goodbye. Then we put the leftover nachos in his rented car and walked along the river.

His kiss awakened feelings I had not felt in a long time. (That’s a line from my book, Trust the Timing.) We watched the sun set behind the trees on the other side of the river.

img_1583.jpg

 

That night, he called his mom and told her I was beautiful. He also left the nachos in his car over night. Because he was so taken with me.  I was taken with him, too and floated on cloud nine for weeks, maybe months.

Every year in July, we go back to that same restaurant to celebrate the anniversary of our second first date with dinner.  We don’t leave the nachos in the car. But we like to walk along the river and watch the sunset.

 

River walk light at sunset

In the winter, we like to roast vegetables in the oven. It makes the house smell wonderful and the dogs drool. Then we eat supper and save some roasted veggies (sweet potatoes, white potatoes, onions, carrots, zucchini, peppers, mushrooms, and whole cloves of garlic) for lunch the next day.  Or maybe if we have supper at home the night before, that could make lunch be dinner.  Anything is possible in the Stream of Consciousness as in life.

Stream of Consciousness Saturday is brought to you by Linda G. Hill. You can learn more about SOCS and “sup” at the link below:

https://lindaghill.com/2018/07/06/the-friday-reminder-and-prompt-for-socs-july-7-18/

Here are the rules:

1. Your post must be stream of consciousness writing, meaning no editing, (typos can be fixed) and minimal planning on what you’re going to write.

2. Your post can be as long or as short as you want it to be. One sentence – one thousand words. Fact, fiction, poetry – it doesn’t matter. Just let the words carry you along until you’re ready to stop.

3. There will be a prompt every week. I will post the prompt here on my blog on Friday, along with a reminder for you to join in. The prompt will be one random thing, but it will not be a subject. For instance, I will not say “Write about dogs”; the prompt will be more like, “Make your first sentence a question,” “Begin with the word ‘The’,” or simply a single word to get your started.

4. Ping back! It’s important, so that I and other people can come and read your post! For example, in your post you can write “This post is part of SoCS:” and then copy and paste the URL found in your address bar at the top of this post into yours. Your link will show up in my comments for everyone to see. The most recent pingbacks will be found at the top. NOTE: Pingbacks only work from WordPress sites. If you’re self-hosted or are participating from another host, such as Blogger, please leave a link to your post in the comments below.

5. Read at least one other person’s blog who has linked back their post. Even better, read everyone’s! If you’re the first person to link back, you can check back later, or go to the previous week, by following my category, “Stream of Consciousness Saturday,” which you’ll find right below the “Like” button on my post.

6. Copy and paste the rules (if you’d like to) in your post. The more people who join in, the more new bloggers you’ll meet and the bigger your community will get!

7. As a suggestion, tag your post “SoCS” and/or “#SoCS” for more exposure and more views.

8. Have fun!


29 Comments

Highly Sensitive

Touch lamp

I’ve been writing about my mother lately (maybe for a Chicken Soup story) and found this post by Trini Lind about highly sensitive people which made me realize that my mother was a HSP, too! It helps me appreciate her more, even though she’s no longer in this world.

“Overly sensitive,” was the phrase back when I was a kid. I fought against my sensitivity my whole life. I didn’t’ want to be like my mother who had nervous breakdowns and migraines. I loved my mother, but I wanted to be strong like my father. Since I couldn’t fix my mom, I watched Star Trek and developed a huge crush on Mr. Spock. Calm, cool, logical Spock. Someone had to stay calm. So I suppressed. I did well in school, drew pictures, and made up stories in my head. And I watched a lot of Star Trek.

Somehow, I managed to become tough enough as an adult to work as an addictions counselor for 30 years, with only occasional meltdowns on my kitchen floor after a hard day.  With all the counseling skills I applied to myself, I guess I became a moderately sensitive person – on the outside at least.

As a retiree, I have begun to embrace my sensitive nature.  I love staying home with the dogs, writing, doing a little painting. At home, I have plenty of time to recover from the times I do go out and interact with people and plenty of time to think about my parents.

Now that I understand more, I wish I’d been nicer to Mom. I wasn’t mean to her. But she tended to bring out my logical side which might been cold sometimes.

I finally painted over the hearts that mysteriously appeared on her bedroom ceiling after she died in 2008. I try to go to my deceased parents’ house at least once a week to sort through their things. There’s a Tiffany style touch lamp on my mom’s old nightstand. On two separate visits in the past month, I was sure that lamp was off before I left the house.  But when I returned on the following weeks, the  lamp was on. Maybe touch lamps are highly sensitive, too. But I have to wonder.  Was that you, Mom?

On my last visit, I unplugged the lamp. If it’s on again when I go back, I’ll know something’s up.


7 Comments

98 Year Old Veteran Finally Gets His Commission

“The arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends toward justice.”

Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

It’s a sad injustice that John Edward James had to wait so long for his commission as second Lieutenant. But the good news is that his family’s persistent advocacy finally made a difference.

 

Do your best anyway and never give up!

 

(Note on the quote: Dr. Martin Luther King was paraphrasing from the 1853 sermon “Of Justice and Conscience,” by Theodore Parker, a Unitarian minister and transcendentalist who called for the abolition of slavery.)

 

Sunflower w address

Good news happens. Feel free to share yours!


33 Comments

Getting Real About My Mess

Window w Blue with Stars

“Don’t Compare Your Insides to Other People’s Outsides.”

The other day, I was listening to an interview on public radio with Peter Sagal, host of “Wait, Wait… Don’t tell Me!” “Wait, Wait” is a comedy quiz show I’d never watched or listened to, so I checked it out on youtube. In the recent interview, Mr. Sagal talked about mental health challenges and how looking at social media sites like Facebook can make a person think: everybody else is so happy. What’s wrong with me? Am I the only one with problems? 

I got to thinking about that and realized that if you look at my Facebook page, or read my book, you’d think I must be pretty darn happy these days. Most of the time, I feel moderately happy.  Yeah, I got to retire from my stressful job, and I’m married to the love of my life, so a lot of the big challenges (stupid mistakes, divorce, more stupid mistakes, and the death of my parents) seem to be behind me. Knock on wood. But life can still be messy.  So, in the interest of being real, here are some of my current messes:

Codependency is still part of my life. After years of recovery meetings, step work, and reading daily meditations for codependents, I still worry too much about other people’s mess – what they think about me, how I might be able to fix help them, etc. But I’m making progress. I don’t let codependency run my life like it used to. I’m a “Recovering People Pleaser,” but some days, I’m still too nice. Or when I’m not nice, because I’m tired of being nice, I feel guilty. The good thing is I feel guilty for minutes or hours instead of days and weeks.

I struggle to let go of my adult children. Not as much in my actions as in my thoughts. Their lifestyles and beliefs are not what I imagined for them. I worry about them. I know some of that’s normal. My parents must have felt the same way about me. But it sure is uncomfortable sometimes. I’m slowly learning to let go.

I’m still more sensitive than I’d like to be. My feelings can get hurt by little things which don’t seem little and which I dwell on too long. Intellectually, I can tell myself all kinds of reasons not to let it get to me, but it’s a struggle.

With all this residual sensitivity and codependency, I get to work on issues with the love of my life. We both have issues. Now we get to work on them together. That’s why we are in the relationships we’re in. And to support each other and have fun. Let’s not forget that!

I have lots of conversations in my head. Thank God and my guardian angels for protecting me when I drive. I’m working on this. I tell myself to focus on the road ahead, to practice mindful driving, and it works for a while, then I realize I’ve been rehearsing a conversation that probably won’t ever happen.

My house is messy. I have a lot of dog hair in my house, and my 16 year old terrier/beagle has incontinence issues. I need to brush the dogs more and buy some air freshener.

It’s been a while, but I like to look at photos of stars with no make up.

So that’s my current mess without touching on the bigger messes of my past, or the mess I don’t even see, because we don’t always see all of our own mess.

I’m thankful that my life is mostly good now, but it’s not a bed of roses.  Okay, there are  are roses, slightly wilted with thorns. Everybody has thorns. Everybody has messes. We all have stuff to work on. And God’s grace is always available.

pale pink rose with thorns


33 Comments

Clutter, Treasure, and Ceiling Art

(Today’s Stream of Consciousness prompt was to “start with a noun.”) 

Clutter is what I’m going to be dealing with tomorrow at my parents’ house that is now my house, so the clutter is all mine. My plan is to get up early and hitch a ride with my husband who has business an hour north of their house (now my other house) which is an hour north of where I live. I don’t mean to be confusing, but my stream of consciousness can easily be confusing.

Sometimes it’s hard to tell if the clutter is trash or treasure. There are books, many of which I’ve already donated, and lots and lots of paper which might need to be recycled or shredded, or treasured as in the case of the letters I found from my father or the poetry written by my mother’s father who I never met. So many electronics, cassette tapes, rubber bands, gadgets and doodads of my dad’s…. and photographs galore. Photos are in photo albums, boxes, bags… Many photos contain people who’s identity I have no clue about. I’m going to trash those. Sorry, unknown friends of my parents. But some photos are treasures like these two I discovered in a box somewhere or maybe a photo album and brought home with me.

JoAnne and Dad Dec 1965 (2)

When me and Dad both got watches for Christmas  ? 1963

Mom JoAne Mary Kaye 1967 (2)

And this one you might remember of my mom, my little sister and me. Dad was in Vietnam

Sometimes the process of going through my parents’ stuff/clutter/treasure is overwhelming. But it’s getting easier as I make progress. After one year, I think I’m about halfway done. I usually find I don’t want to leave their house to go to my house. There’s so much to do. But I like to congratulate myself for each bag of trash discarded, or treasures found, or items donated.

Another thing I do at my parents’ old house is painting over the most obvious blemishes. But one person’s blemish is another person’s treasured message. Like the water damage stains on the bedroom ceiling from before Dad put the metal roof on. I think they look like hearts.  They appeared there not long after Mom died. I think she had something to do with it.

hearts on the ceiling

Painting over these hearts was very hard. I had a good cry after I started the process. But it was a cleansing cry, and Mom told me it was okay. I started with kilz? and then white paint just to see how off it would be. Then I laid down to rest on the bed and noticed my sample white paint kinda looked like an angel. I did not plan this at all. It was just getting paint up there. Mom collected angels and has passed this down to me, so I’ve been painting angels for a few years now, just not usually on ceilings.

angel on the ceiling

Do you see an angel?

I guess white is not going to work on this old ceiling. One step, one layer at a time, I sort out the treasures from the clutter.

I’m posting this early since I’ve got my work cut out for me on Saturday. Catch you later.

SOC winner 2017

For more information about Stream of Consciousness Saturday, visit Linda at:

https://lindaghill.com/2018/06/08/the-friday-reminder-and-prompt-for-socs-june-9-18/

Here are the rules:

1. Your post must be stream of consciousness writing, meaning no editing, (typos can be fixed) and minimal planning on what you’re going to write.

2. Your post can be as long or as short as you want it to be. One sentence – one thousand words. Fact, fiction, poetry – it doesn’t matter. Just let the words carry you along until you’re ready to stop.

3. There will be a prompt every week. I will post the prompt here on my blog on Friday, along with a reminder for you to join in. The prompt will be one random thing, but it will not be a subject. For instance, I will not say “Write about dogs”; the prompt will be more like, “Make your first sentence a question,” “Begin with the word ‘The’,” or simply a single word to get your started.

4. Ping back! It’s important, so that I and other people can come and read your post! For example, in your post you can write “This post is part of SoCS:” and then copy and paste the URL found in your address bar at the top of this post into yours. Your link will show up in my comments for everyone to see. The most recent pingbacks will be found at the top. NOTE: Pingbacks only work from WordPress sites. If you’re self-hosted or are participating from another host, such as Blogger, please leave a link to your post in the comments below.

5. Read at least one other person’s blog who has linked back their post. Even better, read everyone’s! If you’re the first person to link back, you can check back later, or go to the previous week, by following my category, “Stream of Consciousness Saturday,” which you’ll find right below the “Like” button on my post.

6. Copy and paste the rules (if you’d like to) in your post. The more people who join in, the more new bloggers you’ll meet and the bigger your community will get!

7. As a suggestion, tag your post “SoCS” and/or “#SoCS” for more exposure and more views.

8. Have fun!

 


21 Comments

Are You Going to Eat That?

Dave and Doodle on sugar loaf (2)

You stopped eating! That means you’re done. My turn!

I’m not done eating, Doodle.  I’m looking at the computer.

But you stopped! You must be full. I’m starving. Give me the rest!

People don’t eat like dogs. We take our time.

Maybe that’s because you never been starving. I thought I was going to die in the before time.

You’re okay now, Doodle. David says you’re getting fat.

Bowooooo!  No way! Are you going to eat that or not?

I’m still eating. Be patient.

You’re staring at that thing like there’s food in there. You’re gonna save me some right? You have to. That’s the deal.

I’ll save you some Doodle. I always do.

Because I’m a good dog.

Yeah, right. Okay.

Save me all of it. And let me lick the bowl.

Just a minute. See, I’m eating.

Well, why are you taking so long? Just give me a bite.

You know you’re not supposed to eat from the table. I’m almost done.

Don’t let Mary have any. I’m the best dog. See, I’m in my room. I’m waiting.

Marigold’s sleeping. I guess you can have the rest in your room.

In my room! Yes! See, I”m sitting. I’m good!

Okay, Doodle, here you go. Clean it up good.

Yes! Yes!

_________________________

My step dog, Doodle, was rescued from the streets of starvation nine years ago by my husband David. When she watches me eat, her eyes shift back and forth from my food to my face. She does the same thing looking at the dog biscuits on top of the refrigerator when she thinks it’s time for a “cookie.” (Yes, I know she’s spoiled.) She loves people, but being obsessed with food, she is competitive with other dogs. Her coon hound baying is so loud, it can even wake up Marigold the mutt who is 16 and practically deaf.

If you like dogs, you’ll find a pack of ’em (including Doodle and Mary) in my book,

Trust the Timing, A Memoir of Finding Love Again.

Doodle and Mary

Doodle w foot on head (2)

Did I hear the refrigerator door open?

This post was inspired by Mary Melange and her talk with Ziva:

https://maryjmelange.wordpress.com/2018/05/19/socs-miss-downtrodden/