Tag Archives: A-Z Blog

Reflections 2021 #atozchallenge ~Letters from the Heart

 

Reflecting on the end of a challenge. One door closes another one opens. What was good? What was bad? What was ugly?  What can be done different? How can things be better?  

 

THE GOOD

Through my Letters from the Heart series I’ve learned a lot about myself.  Other years I’ve participated, but not really participated. It was nice to reconnect with some past bloggy buddies as well as making some new friends. This year I put a little more effort into getting to know my fellow bloggers and what they stand for.  Networking, because isn’t that what blogging is? Bonding with the homogeneous.

As the years pass, as we write and interact with others, we change. Our writing changes, our moods change, our habits change.  Hopefully for the better.

Statistically speaking, I had visitors from 25 different countries, which I think is really cool. I received more comments than I could keep up with and trust me that count is not high.  I found that if you reciprocate, you tend to get more comments.

THE BAD

I really had it in my head to visit every single blog from the Master List. I didn’t do very well at this.  I found myself drawn to certain blogs which I loved.  It happens. Blogging is a clicky little world and you can’t avoid clicks. We all have the same number of hours in a day. What do you want to use those hours on?  I choose to spend mine on things that I enjoy. Unfortunately it didn’t leave a lot of time for exploring and finding new blogs. A few times I did visit blogs that I wouldn’t normally visit, but really didn’t find them enjoyable.  I left comments but for the most part if I didn’t get a response or at least and acknowledgement that I visited, I did not return to the site.

THE UGLY

Which brings me to the things I disliked.  Some of the website links were not user friendly.  A few of the websites I visited I found it to be a chore to actually find the A-Z challenge. Once I maneuvered my way to the actual post it was fine. But still it was an inconvenience that took valuable minutes out of my day. Others neglected to even post at all. If I visit a blog and can’t easily find my way around, if there is no indication that it’s part of the challenge, or  if I can’t find where to leave a comment, chances are I’m not going to visit again. Also if I visit more than once and have to enter my name, email, etc. every time to leave a comment, I probably won’t comment a second time.

DON’T BITE OFF MORE THAN YOU CAN CHEW

What to do different? I had intentions of participating in the Road Trip. Unfortunately what I need to do is focus on areas where I need to improve before taking on another commitment. I think I jibber-jabbered about how we all have the same number of hours in a day, and we get to choose what we do with those hours. One of the things I noticed through the challenge this year is it’s much more enjoyable when you form a relationship or bond, per say, with some of your fellow bloggers. It’s important to reciprocate when they take the time to make a comment. I plan to take my own road trip.  I want to go back through all of my comments, not only this year, but all of the previous challenges, and respond to every comment that I neglected. Wish me luck.

COLLABORATION

How to make things better? Free advertising. I’ve included a few of my favorite bloggy buddies’ buttons to the right of the site. If you would to share yours send me your info. I’m at yahoo (everyone really is). We are the world of information. Knowledge at our fingertips.  What do you want to share? (Crackerberries discretion of course). I think that’s what this world needs: more sharing and just being kind. And if you think of it throughout the year, pop in on some of the bloggers you hooked up with and just say “HI”.  A random comment or nod might just be what someone needs to make their day.

That’s my take.  What’s yours?  Have you thought about what your theme for next year will be?  Be sure to leave your reflection link or blog link in the comments. I promise to do my best to come visit you and leave a comment back.

Have a great day!

Cheers,

Zebras are Your Favorite ~ Letters from the Heart #atozchallenge

 

Dear Barbie

You wanted to take this last letter and celebrate the love of zebras!

These are some of the items found on your bookshelf.  Tall Cool ☺ne would be happy if you would dust them.

 

Cats can always be found hanging around in the office. There’s Chow Maine having a rest.

Oh you interrupted her when you took her picture.  Don’t mess with a cat when it’s sleeping.

 

Coffee time is always best in an extra large zebra cup!  Cheers!

 

This is a cross stitch made by your sister when she liked you. It hangs in your office next to your desk.  You wonder if she still does cross stitching.  She was very good at it.

 

Back in the day you used to call it “Buxton Chrome”!  Zebra Duck Tape ~ because almost anything can be fixed with duck tape…

 

Would you look at that? Another cat. Oh wait that’s not a cat, that’s a puppy.  Fernando, the transgender — he thinks she’s a puppy. 

 

You couldn’t bring yourself to tossing the cup away even though you can’t drink out of it now because of the crack. It makes a good pen holder (AKA clutter collector).  You hate that Starbucks got rid of the On-Line Store. 😦

 

More random pictures in the office. 

 

Very cool shower curtain.

 

Stuffed toys, or as Tall Cool ☺ne calls, the dust collectors.

 

Hats, well because they are fun to wear!

 

 

This is a wooden handmade zebra. One of the places you worked gave it to you.   That’s just a few of the random zebra items found around the office. It’s a fun hobby but you need another room if you are going to continue to “collect” stuff.  And you know who probably won’t go for that. Speaking of, here’s a song:

 

That’s it for the zebras and that’s it for the a-z blogging challenge.  Don’t forget to come back tomorrow for the end of blogging survey.  And try to keep in touch with all of the cool people you reconnected with and made new friends with.   Until next time. 

Your constant and faithful,

 

 

Y = You and You are NOT the Christ ~ Letters from the Heart #atozchallenge


Dear Impersonator:

Y is for you, and you are not the Christ. Oh, but to have just one day to be the Christ! Can you imagine all the wrongs you’d right? Of course you wouldn’t do it the way Christ did. Dying on a cross for sinners? Heck no! You’d just snuff ‘em out with an enchanted twitch of your nose or a few hocus pocus words with a swirly twirl of your magic-wand-pen.  No second chances, sinners, you’re gone! Ha ha …now wouldn’t that be fun?

Sometimes you try to play God, point your finger to the ones who are doing wrong.  You try to put things in motion  to turn out a certain way. Sometimes you do things to make other things happen to get you the desired result. How do those times turn out for you? Never very good right?

Remember cutting the Cedar tree limbs because the road was blocked? The neighbors told you they took care of the road. (Course they lied, but you still had to exert your rights). Cops came told you NOT to touch the trees, even though they were on the right of way. “The Jones (not their real name) have a lot of entitlement in these parts.” Shit you not, the officer said so himself.

God took care of it all in the end, but if you had just left it alone instead of exerting YOUR rights, you wouldn’t have so many run-ins with the neighbors.  You also would not have the sheriff’s department giving you a “friendly reminder” every time you decide to start a new project! That name has clout in the these parts…don’t you forget it. You’re a Yankee and the South is gonna do it again (that’s a whole other topic, don’t get started!)

Do you wonder if other people think about having that kind of power? Wonder what it would be like to be the Christ for one day? Isn’t that why writers write? To live in a little bit of fabricated world to set aside the real world humdrums even for a short period of time. That’s why you write when you are writing to entertain yourself.

Even in a good short story with that kind of power you couldn’t handle it. You probably wouldn’t be able to handle three wishes. You’d screw up the first two, then have to use the last one to wish that you never had them in the first place. It’s better to live by these instructions.

1. It is all in God’s hands, you are not the Christ.
2. Any questions, refer to #1.

Thanks for playing along. This was just a silly-willy kind of letter. You were convicted a lot in that last Bible study. It’s good to be humble.  He’s got it all planned and mapped out for you if you just follow His prompting. Don’t try to do it on your own. You’ll mess it up and then you know what happens? 


Your constant and faithful,


I don’t know about you guys but I am ready for a break. Omigosh so many things that I’ve not done around the house. Tomato plants are dying to be transplanted (literally). I sure hope we can all stay in touch if not daily, weekly maybe or monthly. It’s really been nice to have you loyal bloggies come around for a visit.

Xtra Xtra Read All About It! ~ Letters from the Heart #atozchallenge

 

 

Dear Barbiella:

Isn’t it funny how sometimes the things you have planned or not planned work out like you had no idea they were going to work out? Be honest here. When you put down Xtra Xtra read all about it on the Theme Reveal List, you had no clue what you were going to write about. You just figured something would come to mind and you would get it done.

Perhaps you were going to use this post to list some of the favorite blogs that you have been trying to keep up with throughout the challenge.  

o Music
o Vacation
o Projects
o Cartoons
o Life musings

 

Perhaps you were going to have the news about the new opportunities that both you and hubby have at your places of employment. You are both waiting for that yeah or neigh to go through and maybe you thought  you could brag about those opportunities.

Perhaps you wanted to sing praises about your son and all of the awesome opportunities he has at Disney and Universal. Can’t wait to go on the new ride.  

 

You weren’t really sure until about 8:30 PM last Friday evening when you got the news. (You need to write these things down so you remember them in chronological order!) It’s still kind of a secret because all of the important people have not been told. But in your defense none of the important people read your blog anyways so you need not be concerned that they will find out here.

So you are gonna be a Granny! Isn’t that exciting?   Today is about CELEBRATION! YOU are finally going to be a Granny-mamma! How AWESOME! More to come at a later date.

Your constant and faithful,

 

The end is near … on the last three letters XYZ.  Don’t give up now. You can do this.  Try to get yourself a copy of the Master List so you can continue to visit other blogs throughout the year.  Buy a TSHIRT if you haven’t already.  Make some comments or share your linky-dinks on the social media platforms.  Have some fun.  Enjoy the ride…ooh Road Trip coming up.

Understanding Truths ~ Letters from the Heart #atozchallenge


Dear Barbie

Understanding Truths, what does that even mean? Remember the truth or dare game you used to play as a kid? It was always intimidating after the question was asked knowing you had to be truthful or take the dare. Who knows what that dare could be? Kids had a funny way of making each other participate in silly and stupid things. And to be honest, how did they know if you were telling the truth or not.  Ever since the ballerina incident your conscience always got to you.  

Tall Cool ☺ne always says, “Say what you mean and mean what you say”. He is very literal. It’s hard for you because you write.  You write for effect and sometimes things need embellishment. You should work on articulating without trimming when communicating … you are not writing a story.

Point to mention, this new venture at work entails a full background check ~life time. Crazy, huh?  You are pretty good at knowing what is in your past since you’ve journaled about every little detail. While trying to get the documentation for one such incident from the court, the person on the other end tried to tell you it wouldn’t show up when they did the background check. Hello? Person on the other end of the phone, you’re seeing it, what makes you think “they” are not going to see it?

Why do people have an issue with truth? Do they think that if they don’t talk about it makes it not true? Do they think if they speak what they think is true that’s what it will be?  This is where Understanding Truths came to land on the list.



Just a quick look in your bible’s index and there are over 58 references to the word “truth”. Probably the most important one is John 14:6 “I am the way, the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.” If you ask Him, He will give you all the truth you need. You don’t need to understand anyone else’s truths.

Learn about some truths here … today (4/24/21) only

 

That’s all for today. (Oh and you have a secret… )

Your constant and faithful,

 

TGIF – Thanksgiving ~ Letters from the Heart #atozchallenge


Dear Barbie

Can you believe there are only six letters left after today? Whatever will you do? Today’s letter is about thanksgiving. Not the holiday (although it is Tall Cool ☺ne’s favorite) but thanksgiving in general.

As you read through the past letters in your little orange journal, you find a few revelations that have helped you understand and get past some of your silly stubbornness. Let’s just say you still have a long ways to go. But aren’t you happy you took the time to write to yourself? At the end of this month you are going to owe yourself 26 letters! (Ha Ha)

Seriously though, when you forget to give thanks for the simple things, you tend to look for things that you don’t have. When you do that it snowballs into a great big battle of discontentment and disappointment. It’s actually been quite nice writing to yourself here on your blog because you have such great people who respond. Thanks, blog buddies! ☺  I really appreciate all you do!

When you look back and see what you have or what you don’t have, it’s usually the daily little things that mean the most. Does that make sense? It’s the trivial things that are huge if they aren’t there. The first breath you take when you wake up, indoor plumbing, the flick of a switch that brings light to the room, a hot cup of coffee, that little piece of Bible scripture that starts the day,  a wink from Tall Cool ☺ne when he peeks into your office each morning, the purring of the cat cuddled up on your neck, the good morning texts from your kids, the bunnies, birds, butterflies and squirrels in the yard, a glass of wine at the end of the day… The list is endless if you just take the time to think about it. It’s the small daily things that count as big in the end. Be sure to give thanksgiving every day.

Have a great day!

How’s everyone’s challenge going? Are you all having a good time? Visiting lots of other blogs?  I gave up trying to visit five new blogs each day– my bad I’m sorry. But if you visit me I do my best to visit you. Have you ordered a t-shirt yet? I really hope Jeremy creates a SURVIVOR TSHIRT for completing the challenge. Are you finding all of the letters so far in the scavenger hunt?  Don’t forget to check out the master list and see if there is a blog you may have missed. We are on the final stretch now.  You can do it!

Salting the Wounds ~Letters from the Heart #atozchallenge

Dear Salty Dawg:

Salting the wound is making an already unpleasant situation worse. As much as you want to share your little orange notebook entry for today’s letter, you know it’s not the right thing to do. Sometimes you just gotta know when to let people go. Sometimes you can’t fix the wrongs they feel in their life. Sometimes it’s not you. Sometimes you have to accept that you have done all you can. Sometimes they won’t let bygones be bygones.  Sometimes you need to let them go, scissor ✂them out of your life. Stop trying to fix them.

You probably should have picked Starbucks or Sunshine or summer or Sometimes… here’s a song by one of your favorites.  Perfect for this post…..


See ya,

                   

 

 

Reflections of What Made You Who You Are ~Letters from the Heart #atozchallenge

Dear B,

Well you have absolutely done it again. Picked a topic which takes a lot of deep thought and contemplation. How in the world will you get this post done in time? There’s much to do…cooking, cleaning …. and calling your mother.

You may have to cheat just a little.

Why do you write ?  Have a gander right here.  When you get a chance maybe you should update that.

Writing has always been a hobby but at one point there was a time you wanted to be famous.  Remember that terrible book you had so many issues with?

It’s more fun to just have a place to ponder your thoughts and write whatever you want instead of what people tell you to write.

When you get sick of writing let your creativity explode in the kitchen. You always have something tasty going on over there.

Tall Cool ☺ne and you have such a fairytale to tell, not to mention the on-going journeys and never ending projects. My, my, you are a busy little thing aren’t you?  Just a face in the crowd baby, a face in the crowd.

Now, in perfect fashion, you have decided to take on that opportunity you talked about in an earlier post. Good luck my dear. You can do this. You have the inclination and determination it takes to push yourself to reach higher goals. If you are comfortable, you are not challenging yourself. Remember that, and when the going gets tough, get a cup of coffee and the tough will get going.

You just realized you don’t have a blog for the kids and grandkids.  You need to build a site for them….one more thing to add to your to do list.

until next time your constant and faithful,

Quiet Time ~Letters from the Heart #atozchallenge

Dear Barbie:

As you mentioned yesterday people are part of your life. While thinking about what to write in regards to quiet time, two very special people came to mind.  Your sister and your friend Rach.  A lot could be said about the quietness between you and your sister, but instead, we are going to dedicate this one to Rachel.  She knows a whole lot about quiet times.

Read about Rachel’s Quiet Time here.

What are your thoughts?  Do you know someone like Rachel?

If you have any Questions ❓ for Rachel feel free to send her an email.

Until next time,

your constant and faithful,

I don’t know about you but this has been so much fun writing and getting to talk to you guys everyday.  I really hope we will stay in touch.  If not every day maybe once a week, or a month?  I need the encouragement so I’ll help you if you help  me.  ☺

People ~ Letters from the Heart #atozchallenge


Dear Barbie:

People are part of your life. They come and go in your life all the time. Some people are part of your life forever and some for a short period of time. People are funny human beings with different characteristics that make you love them or not like them so much at all. Sometimes you can chose to have people in your life and other times you don’t get that option.

In you’re opinion you are lucky to get the opportunity to work from home and not have to meet people face to face on a daily basis. Others might disagree, but you have a tendency to tell people exactly what you think (you are working on this and doing a good job, but still have a long ways to go).  You think a lot of people are a few cans short of a six pack.

This challenge has brought many new people into your life and it’s a blessing to be able to learn about so many new things and the opportunity to visit new cultures, fresh ideas and different opinions. You would like to mention some people (old pals and some new faces too).

Our smiling Janet is taking us on a round trip through San Francisco.
Curious Cathy is sketching us pictures and sharing Looney Tunes cart☺☺ns.
John single-handedly is counting down the top 40.
Tamara always has a fresh new perspective to ponder.

How could I forget Karen where I can always go home to Maine?
Iain shares the background of characters from his State Trilogy.
Pradeep is taking us through Bengaluru, formerly known as Bangalore.
Arlee (founder of A-Z) taking us for a river ride.


There are so many more people to mention and should but then it wouldn’t be short and sweet. Make sure you visit the master list and pick a category you wouldn’t normally look at. Go see what they are up to. Make a nice comment! You have more people to meet, so what are you waiting for.

Cheers,

Well folks we only have two weeks to go.  How is everyone doing?  Are you planning to keep at it after the challenge is over?  I for one definitely want to keep writing.  It brings me such joy.  We still have the After Survey, Reflections and then the Road Trip…that will be fun.

 

Needful Things ~ Letters from the Heart #atozchallenge

 

Dear Squirrel: (AKA collector of Nuts 🥜)

When you hear needful things you probably think of the novel by Stephen King. A new kind of store, for sure! Ole Steve can spin a tale now. When you reminisce about that story you wonder what your needful things are.  Hopefully not as needful as those people in the movie.

√ That first cup of coffee in the morning (and second, and third…)
√ The book and pen you write with each morning
√ Your bible

Okay so maybe those aren’t needed so much as in that you’d die without them (can’t guarantee that someone else wouldn’t) because you are a bear without the morning rituals. People get confused over NEED and DESIRE. 

 

Look at the your piles of needful things around the house… your possessions. Tall Cool ☺ne has his own piles of chaos even though he’ll tell you it’s not clutter. It’s useful tools (needful things) that he’s going to use one day. We are all going to use them or get to reading them one day.  Yes, sir, believe that one and we’ll spin you another yarn. Speaking of yarn, you just bought two bails of worsted yarn for homemade dish cloths to make one day in your spare time (yeah right)!

How many cookbooks do you need? And that King collection, are you really going to read them all again? Can you imagine how much simpler and neater things would be without all that stuff you have to move each time you dust? Shhh, everyone knows you don’t dust, you’re just saying that for effect of the letter.

People spend your whole lives buying chattels and collecting properties. At a certain point, there comes a time in life when you will want to get rid of everything, or a lot of things and downsize. You’re going to try to pass certain trinkets down to your kids or grandkids, because you want to keep it in the family.  It ain’t never gonna happen, baby… so stop. Stop thinking it’s needful things. What do you need to survive? Stop being a collector of useless clutter that you think your kids or grandkids are going to want.  They are busy making piles of their own needful things (useless clutter).

**Side note, what you really need is people, relationships.  We’ll touch on that subject next week.


Until next time,
Your constant and faithful,

 

What is A2ZBlogging? Well we are half way through the month so you should know by now.  Be sure to check out some peeps from the master list and keep on keeping on. 

Marriage ~ Letters from the Heart #atozchallenge


Dear Woman:

You sure know how to challenge yourself with this years A to Z Blogging Challenge. Marriage? You really want to write about marriage?

A bribe to make a housekeeper think she’s a house holder.                                                     ~Thornton Wilder

An institution which is popular because it combines the minimum of temptation with the maximum of opportunity.                                  ~George Bernard Shaw

Neither heaven, nor hell… simply purgatory.                                                                                                ~Abraham Lincoln

Another topic with potential of stepping on toes and being controversial.  Why you picked marriage for the M topic we may never know.  Here you are, trying to come up with something witty and sound like you know what you’re talking about when you don’t have a clue.

Here’s what you’ve learned:

  • Don’t put anchovies on pizza
  • Fruit does not go in beer
  • All potato salad is the same
  • No matter how you slice it, cake is not pie

There are other things but it’s too early in the morning, you’re brain has not had enough coffee.  You just asked for a tip from Tall Cool ☺ne.  His words of wisdom: Don’t get married until you know everything! 

Tomorrow we’ll talk about needful things.

Until next time,
Your constant and faithful



What is A2ZBlogging? Using this premise, you would start beginning April First with a topic themed on something with the letter A, then on April second another topic with the letter B as the theme, and so on until you finish on April thirtieth with the theme based on the letter Z. It doesn’t even have to be a word–it can be a proper noun, the letter used as a symbol, or the letter itself. The theme of the day is the letter scheduled for that day.

Love Letter ~ Letters from the Heart #atozchallenge

Dear Barbie:

Do you know what a love letter is? An expression of love in written form. You are loved. Tall Cool ☺ne loves you so much. Look at that little note you found while trying to find the perfect picture for this post.

The frankest and the freest product of the human mind and heart is a l♥ve letter.

~Mark Twain

Something of substance. Something you can hold on to. It’s not an email or a text message that is going to be deleted with the next update.  People do that all the time on social media.  They share memes telling this one or that one how much they love them.  Unfortunately it’s usually after someone dies.  If it’s not important every day, why make it important when someone dies? 

Don’t conform to this world.  Make time to let the ones you love know how much you love them.  You are loved Barbie… so much. You love so many people and you do what you do.  Send them the old fashion handwritten letter.  They love that.

People are busy and people don’t have time.  So are you. Everyone has the same number of hours in a day.  It’s sort of like that saying it’s not the years of life you live, it’s the life in the years you live.  It’s not how many hours you are busy, but what is the business you are filling the hours with?

Continue making time to tell the people you love just that.

Until next time,

Your constant and faithful,

 

How’s everyone’s challenge going? Are you all having a good time? Visiting lots of other blogs? Shout out today to John for listing the perfect song to add to my blog today.  I’m trying to visit five new blogs each day but it’s not easy. Have you ordered a t-shirt yet? I really hope Jeremy creates a SURVIVOR TSHIRT for completing the challenge. Are you finding all of the letters so far in the scavenger hunt?  Don’t forget to check out the master list and select a few that you may not normally visit. Good luck and have fun.

Kids ~ Letters from the Heart #A2ZChallenge2021


Dear Mom: (it sounds like “mum” when you say it).

You say anchiladas instead of enchiladas, selsa instead of salsa, sireen instead of siren, dooryard instead of drive-way, and the list goes on and on. But this letter is not about your accent and how you say things the wrong way. It might be more fun because writing about kids is could be a little contentious.



Between you and Tall Cool ☺ne you have four kids: three boys and one girl. NRMZ in order of age. Our Nice, Radiant, Motivating and Zealous children.  One of a kind, our group of kids. They are grown adults. You don’t get to see them as much as you would like to.

Everyone says they live their lives for their kids, and every choice they make is for the good of their kids. You don’t think so. It’s hard to write about kids because someone’s feelings might be hurt, or someone else might judge you based on what you say.

It is hard to live up to the standards that people have for each other. You try to lead your kids to make good choices, what you think is the right choice. As much as you want to take care of every little issue that they have, sometimes you have to let them figure it out on their own.

When they call and say “Mom, I don’t know what to do.” That does not translate into “Mom, tell me what you would do because I know you have my best interest at heart and I can always count on you to lead me right.” Even though you think that now, they are not going to listen to you any more than you listened to your mother. You still aren’t listening to your mother, so don’t expect more from your kids than you can do yourself.

You think that one day all four kids, NRMZ with spouses and children in tow, are going to come to your house for a nice Sunday dinner. You have been talking about this since before you and Tall Cool ☺ne were married. Tall Cool ☺ne keeps telling you it’s never gonna happen. You can’t help having a dream, a wish, a hope.

This letter should have been about kangaroos or karaoke. Kids are too hard to write about. You love your kids. As much as you don’t want to admit it you want to control situations and relationships. You need to get over that and just let them be. They are not you and they do not see things the way you do. Enjoy their company and phone calls when you get them.  Stop mingling in trying to make everything like the Brady Bunch. You are not Carol Brady.

Until next time,
Your constant and faithful,

How’s everyone’s challenge going? Are you all having a good time? Visiting lots of other blogs? Did you get a TSHIRT?  Have you found all of the letters so far in the scavenger hunt?  Don’t forget to check out the master list and select a few that you may not normally visit. Good luck and have fun.

Journal Master ~Letters from the Heart #A2ZChallenge2021


Dear Journaling Master:

This entry kind of feels like cheating because you used journaling in a previous A2Z challenge, but it seems only fitting that it be used again. For real, your hand written journals date back to sometime in 1982. You’re gonna keep them FOREVER!

Most of them are crammed into a plastic tote. Do you remember when you used to try to put them on a bookshelf in chronological order? You are so anal sometimes. But they took up way too much book space. It was the journals or the Stephen King collection. Too bad for you, Steve’s book display is a little more attractive than your hodge-podge of journals.

You have thought about getting rid of them. What purpose do they serve other than taking up space? But whenever you think of destroying them, you have nightmares and it scares the shit out of you like cutting your hair. It feels like part of you would die.

After-all, one day you may want to read through your trials, errors, tribulations, satisfactions, fulfillment, and success. Or not, who knows? For now the journals stay.  Besides, journaling is a way of escape, a stress reliever, a problems solver. Grab a pen, grab a cup of coffee☕, open up a fresh blank page and let your journey begin.

Until next time,
your constant and faithful,

What do my fellow journal keepers do with your journals? How do you store them? Are they in neat little boxes? Do you keep them? What are your thoughts and ideas about keeping old journals?

Gardening ~Letters from the Heart #A2ZChallenge2021

 


Hey Bob:

(That’s just a little inside joke. When you call your mother, that’s how she answers the phone. ☺♥)

When the list was made for the “theme reveal” your letter about gardening was meant to be just that. Out in the garden, planting green beans, and cucumbers and tomatoes and all those fun vegetables that you and Tall Cool ☺ne love to eat through the summer and then can/preserve the abundance for later consuming.

After the past few days of self-reflection, gardening has taken on a new perspective. Think of it in a metaphorical sense. Maybe you need to go weeding.

Sometimes what we see as good and pretty is actually destroying what is healthy. For example the wisteria in the back yard is beautiful when in full bloom. The scent is a little over-powering but the flowers are gorgeous.  Unfortunately the plant itself is invasive. When Tall Cool ☺ne cut it back (to your dismay) azalea, camellia and gardenia bushes were revealed.

 

 

Sometimes giant pretty things need to be destroyed to reveal healthy little things.  What is in your life that needs weeding? What looks big and pretty that is covering up small and healthy?

Food for thought.

your constant and faithful,

 

How’s everyone’s challenge going? Are you all having a good time? Visiting lots of other blogs?  I’m trying to visit five new blogs each day but it’s not Have you ordered a t-shirt yet?  Have you found all of the letters so far in the scavenger hunt?  Don’t forget to check out the master list and select a few that you may not normally visit. Most of all, have fun! ♥

Doing Chores ~ Letters from the Heart

Dear Barbie,

Ding dong the witch is dead, clap your hands, get out of bed, the wicked witch is dead. Now that Judy doesn’t come to visit anymore those once a month nesting urges don’t come anymore either. If there was one thing good about Judy’s visit, your house was always spic and span clean at least a couple days a month. I bet your kids remember. They probably have clean bathrooms, clean floor boards and sparkling windows. They had to be part of the chore day, and if the job was not up to par, they had to do do-overs

These days the housework chore list is never ending. It’s always going to be that way so you might as well face it. Cleaning the dust bunnies out from under the bed once a month when you flip the mattress is good enough. And that is how to attack the chores that need to be done. Eliminate clutter (as much as you can) and that makes the cleaning easier and faster. But sometimes you have to let it be “good enough”. Not everything is perfect.

Cut yourself some slack, I mean really who wants their epitaph to read “She always had a clean house”?

Until next time,

your constant and faithful,

What is A2ZBlogging? Using this premise, you would start beginning April First with a topic themed on something with the letter A, then on April second another topic with the letter B as the theme, and so on until you finish on April thirtieth with the theme based on the letter Z.  It doesn’t even have to be a word–it can be a proper noun, the letter used as a symbol, or the letter itself.  The theme of the day is the letter scheduled for that day.

 

Controlling Situations ~ Letters from the Heart

Dear Barbie,

I know this is going to be hard for you, but one day when you look back on this letter you will appreciate the humor. You make yourself lists and then you make more lists to remember to look at the list you made. You have piles of paper and books (Tall Cool ☺ne hates your piles of clutter) everywhere to remind you what’s next. It’s just clutter.

You’re enjoying that nice cup of blueberry coffee right now, the cats are under your feet, and as you look out into the kitchen from your office what are you seeing? You’re seeing the cupboard doors open? Why can’t you get that habit under control and close them? Tall Cool ☺ne comes behind and closes your doors you’ve left open.

You think you have to call your mother every day. How about this? If you don’t call her and she wants to talk to you, she’ll call you. Revelation: she might not want to talk to you every day. 

You make itineraries of your days off of what you and Tall Cool ☺ne are going to do.  Then you get mad when things don’t go as you have them planned. You want to control everything ~Genesis 3:16.  No matter how much you think you have it figured out, guess what! You control nothing. Listen, doll, Christ first, then your husband, then you. “… run in such a way that you may obtain it. And in everyone who competes … is temperate in all things…” ~1 Corinthians 9:24-25. Be temperate, be accommodating and let go of things you have no control over.

A little spontaneity never hurt anyone.




Until next time,

your constant and faithful,

 

What is A2ZBlogging? Using this premise, you would start beginning April First with a topic themed on something with the letter A, then on April second another topic with the letter B as the theme, and so on until you finish on April thirtieth with the theme based on the letter Z.  It doesn’t even have to be a word–it can be a proper noun, the letter used as a symbol, or the letter itself.  The theme of the day is the letter scheduled for that day.

Be Bold, Be Beautiful, Be You ~ Letters from the Heart

Dear Barbie,

“Because I said so, that’s why!” Bet you never heard those words before, huh? Don’t be a B — Bear 🧸!

Let’s be serious. Being important and recognized is fundamental to a healthy, happy life. You might not realize it, but you are very important, and your efforts do not go unnoticed. Just because someone doesn’t answer your letter doesn’t mean they don’t appreciate hearing from you. Seriously woman, if you stopped writing letters, you, single-handedly, would put the USPS out of business. No lie. Some people just do not have the desire or astuteness to sit down and write a letter. Have you ever met anyone whom likes to write as much as you? No! Maybe one day you will.

Believe me when I tell you, everything you do is recognized. Sometimes you just don’t get to see the fruit of your efforts. Kind of like when Moses led the Israelites to the Promised Land but he never got to cross over into it. ~Deuteronomy 34:1-7. You may not experience the growth of your planted seeds, but God is watching.

The letters you write, the fruit of your love, could be the most important work you ever do. Write your letters, don’t worry about responses. That is not important. It’s your words, your thoughtfulness, the way you care deeply for the ones you love. Be bold, be beautiful, be you.

Until next time,

your constant and faithful,


What is A2ZBlogging? Using this premise, you would start beginning April First with a topic themed on something with the letter A, then on April second another topic with the letter B as the theme, and so on until you finish on April thirtieth with the theme based on the letter Z. It doesn’t even have to be a word–it can be a proper noun, the letter used as a symbol, or the letter itself. The theme of the day is the letter scheduled for that day.

Survivor

 

 

Completely forgot about the Reflections part of the A-Z Blogging Challenge.  Now that April is over the writing on a daily basis doesn’t seem as important as it was while keeping up with the challenge.  I wish we could do it all year. Or maybe do a monthly check in. I’d like to say thank you to all of my readers who followed my daily posts for the April blogging challenge.  It was nice to have the support and encouragement and I appreciate every one of you.  For me it was nice to check off another year √!  This makes six for me. 

 

I was quite surprised to see that there were only 510 bloggers who signed up.  WOW … I kept thinking there was something wrong with my excel sheet every time I opened it to jump over to visit someone’s blog.  It’s a shame there was not more of a turn out.  Maybe next year. Maybe we should plug the challenge all year long?  

 

I know I’m going to try to blog more and keep visiting more of the people from the list.  I’m also going to try to recruit people from my own blog to come next year.  We should all try to do same. It is hard to promote someone else, especially when we want the attention ourselves. It’s a great big world out there and blogging on a personal level has become lost in the commercialization and advertisement and propaganda.

 

If you need some fancy artwork for your web or anything check out  Jeremy Hawkins.  He did all the artwork for the challenge and he has a  Neat Shop — Very Cool Stuff

 

Stay real folks and stay safe. 

Yesteryear

The year is 2011. The morning is young.

2:18 AM Chow Maine thinks she is in combat and starts doing laps around the perimeter of the bed.  Four laps around and then pouncing from one pillow across the headboard over to the other pillow, and then leaping to the floor with a loud plop.  One would think she weighed 40 pounds.

2:37 AM    Tall Cool ☺ne has had enough. He gets out of the bed.  She runs out of the bedroom; he closes the door saying something about a stupid cat.

3:01 AM I can’t take her scratching and clawing at the door any more — it sounds like fingernails on a chalkboard.  I get up with the flash light, open the door and she peaks around the corner as if to say, “Want to play?”  I go out to the kitchen over to her dish. “Come here!” She thinks she is going to be fed.  I scoop her up, carry her back to the bed.  Chow Maine does a little kneading with her claws and settles in under the covers, purring.  I am just about to the land of “La-La” when she is out from under the covers, across the bed with a loud thump on the floor.

3:32 AM Grrrrrr, she is driving me crazy!  I get up and she immediately runs out of the bedroom.  I throw a sweatshirt toward the door at her hoping to dissuade her from coming back.  Tall Cool ☺ne snickers and says, “She is just going to keep doing it”.  I get settled back under the covers and start that deep breathing that comes just before sleep and …

3:55 AM Bow Wow, Wow, Wow; it is Foxtrot.  He has a deep southern drawl type bark that almost makes me think that he is saying, “I really don’t want to put too much effort into this barking thing but I feel like I should bark.”  He has the Sam Elliot of dog barks.

4:09 AM I lay there thinking, he won’t bark that long, he’s not real loud.  He will quiet down in a minute. He does. I’m back in that mode of falling asleep. Suddenly his brother, Charlie starts:  Ruff, ruff, ruff, ruff, and ruff!  He has that high pitched beagle in a big dog bark that makes the hair on the back of my neck stand up.  He has the Pee Wee Herman of dog barks.

4:28 AM I drag myself out of the bed and open the window and yell for the two meatheads to be quiet, not in such a nice tone either.  Charlie, the daring one, tests me and barks a couple more times.  This time I yell just at him. Minutes later I am back under the covers and I am wondering why bother because it’s almost time for the alarm.  But sleep seems to come easy and just as I am sauntering off, plunk right in the center of my stomach.  Chow Maine is back… How the heck?

Sleep is one of those things that the value cannot be truly appreciated unless it is interrupted.  Years later, the dogs have found their place over the rainbow.  Chow Maine is still making her rounds reminding us how precious sleep is. Once we are up, she finds a resting place for the day, usually on the couch where she can bask in the sunshine.

Sleep is something I do not take for granted. As I think about this  I am convicted by how many things that I cannot place a value on because I have not been without them.  Food, water, shelter, clothing; all things I take for granted every day;  simple things like toilet paper. There are so many people that don’t have simple things. The things  that I take for granted every day. Things like being able to take a shower and wash my hair, a washer and dryer so that I can clean my clothes.  Maybe my deprivation from sleep was a wake up call.   Are there things I can do without?  I don’t think toilet paper is one of them and I know that sleep definitely is not.  Chow Maine reminds me of this each morning.     But …. I wonder……

Welcome to the A-Z Blogging Challenge.  This year I think it will bring a lot more people together with this crazy pandemic. Being quarantined means people will flock to the web looking for things to do. This is a great way to meet new friends/contacts.  Maybe you will read something new, find a new hobby, or just be entertained by some random musings.  Whatever the case may be, stay safe, drink plenty of liquids and enjoy the trip. 

Wicked Ways of the Wandering




An Apt Pupil once told me that A Good Marriage was the ticket to The Bazar of Bad Dreams. Blockade Billy tried to find hope in a Bag of Bones, but his wife Carrie left her Children of the Corn for dog, Cujo to eat during the Cycle of the Werewolf. Through a Cat’s Eye there is a Cell just beyond Desperation. Delores Claiborne may have been in Different Seasons of her life when she fell asleep under a Dreamcatcher and woke up in Duma Key. Fortunately Everything’s Eventual and at the End of Watch it’s Finders Keepers.

At Four Past Midnight From a Buick 8 they will find Full Dark No Stars and Gerald’s Game plays out at the Hotel at the End of the Road. No one leaves happy and everyone leaves their Hearts in Atlantis. It will cause Insomnia Just After Sunset and trust me, it’s no Joyland. Not King’s, but LT’s Theory on Pets that is the real Lisey’s Story. The Lawnmower Man is just another one of The Langoliers. Misery doesn’t come without Mr. Mercedes and he’s driving in Maximum Overdrive.

Nona thinks she wants Needful Things but it’s just a bunch of Nightmares & Dreamscapes The Outsider told her she would have if she visited Pet Sematary. She signed up for Quitter’s Inc. and thought The fifth Quarter would bring Revival but she met Rose Madder who was just another Sleeping Beauty. The Shining Skeleton Crew took The Stand and in The Institute The Girl who Love Tom Gordon is standing alone at The Dark Tower. The Dead Zone is not really dead but The Eyes of the Dragon will haunt The Dark Half if there is anything left.

By the time Uncle Otto’s Truck comes to take us Under the Dome Umney’s Last Case of  the American Vampire will be the Word Processor of the Gods and the Woman in the Room will cast everyone out to The Wastelands.

Just a fun little trot through one of my favorite author’s tales. Do you know who it is? I could not come up with a title for K. Can you? X, Y, and Z doesn’t count because those days have not played out yet.



Welcome to the A-Z Blogging Challenge. This year I think it will bring a lot more people together with this crazy pandemic. Being quarantined means people will flock to the web looking for things to do. This is a great way to meet new friends/contacts. Maybe you will read something new, find a new hobby, or just be entertained by some random musings. Whatever the case may be, stay safe, drink plenty of liquids and enjoy the trip.

Tame The Tongue

 

Remember the old adage “if you don’t have something nice to say, don’t say anything at all”? Too many times I’ve said something and then wished I hadn’t. Open mouth, insert foot. Most times it’s been both feet. Words are something you can never take back. Once they are spoken they are out there for the duration of whenever that other person decides to let it go. Sometimes they never do.

We should use our words to encourage and motivate, build up and praise, compliment and applaud one another. How many times do we take the opportunity to say “hey good job on that project you completed”, or “wow that’s a nice coat you’re wearing today” or even just “thanks for being here today”? In my workplace it’s hardly ever. (Not that they can see a smile or a coat I’m wearing, but that is just an example.) More times than not people are complaining about having to be at work, or the weather, or the customers, or each other…and we work from home!

I can’t say I haven’t had my share of tongue flapping. Proof is in my earlier blogs. I could flap my jaws like nobody’s business. James 3:8 No man can tame the tongue. It is an unruly evil, full of deadly poison. Proverbs 18:2 A fool has no delight in understanding, but in expressing his own heart. I’ve grown a lot in my last twelve years of blogging. I cannot say it’s been an easy road. Wisdom comes with experience and if we don’t learn from past mistakes, we are not growing at all. 

People always have an opinion. Opinions are different than words. We are all entitled to our own opinion. What some people do is take their opinions and convolute them into something that they believe is truth. Sometimes those truths are not real and people who spread these words hurt other people.

Example: Terry and Toni work the same shift on the same team. Every day Toni clocks in fifteen minutes later than Terry. Terry starts noticing this and decides to clock in fifteen minutes later than his scheduled time. Later that week Terry’s boss comes to him and asks him to stay fifteen minutes over to make up for coming in late the day before. Terry is pissed. Instead of asking questions to find out if there is an underlying reason why he had to make up his time but his teammate Toni never does, he starts spreading rumors about Toni and why she comes in late every day. The rumors he spreads are false and hurtful to not only Toni but Toni’s family.  What Terry didn’t realize was Toni only took a 45 minute lunch to allow her that extra fifteen minutes in the morning to take her children to daycare.”

It’s just a silly made up example, but those types of things happen every single day. People make stuff up about someone they don’t know anything about and rumors start to fly. Look at politics. I’ll be honest , I don’t. My favorite author started making his views about politics known, and quite honestly, I think it’s disgusting. I feel bad for all of the people who are in politics and I pray for them…both sides.  They have it hard. I know we are entitled to having our own opinion, but if it involves putting someone else down, keep it to yourself. Tame that little beast in your mouth.

Take the time to build up, encourage, compliment. All good things. That’s what the world needs more of.   Galatians 5:16, 22 Walk then in the Spirit and you will not fulfill the desires of your flesh. The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, long-suffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, and self-control.

That’s all for today my friends…. until next time.

Cheers!


Welcome to the A-Z Blogging Challenge. This year I think it will bring a lot more people together with this crazy pandemic. Being quarantined means people will flock to the web looking for things to do. This is a great way to meet new friends/contacts. Maybe you will read something new, find a new hobby, or just be entertained by some random musings. Whatever the case may be, stay safe, drink plenty of liquids and enjoy the trip.