Tag Archives: relationships

Nomination

 

I haven’t had a good post in quite some time. Today is as good as any. Since the challenge I’ve been on a temporary hiatus. Funny how I disappear randomly for weeks, or months at a time. You faithful blog buddies are here to welcome me back time and time again. Thank you for being here.

I was nominated for the Ideal Inspiration Blogger Award by my blogging buddy, Tamara. What a HOOT! I’ve always thought of myself as inspiring but never really thought anyone else did. Thank you, my friend. I really needed this little push of inspiration to get back to it.

As I mentioned I was on hiatus. I spent the months of May, June and July studying my ass off (really wish I could say I lost some of that, but I didn’t) to pass the state insurance test. YES, I passed it. It is a process and I’m not sure what is next, but the wheels are turning. A new adventure is in store for sure!

So without further ado, let’s get started.

Here are the questions Tamara has posed for me to answer. I will be as truthful as I can.

1. If you were an animal, what would you be? Well I used to think I’d like to be a dog. In fact when my sister and I were young I was always the pet dog. Funny I just remembered that. Now I think I’d rather be a cat. A cat does whatever a cat wants. But I also love zebras and they are just so perfect. I would like to be perfect.

2. In what way has this pandemic changed your perception of the world? I’d like to say that it has brought people closer together and given everyone a new sense of hope. Unfortunately it has only proven how crazy people are and not only that, but disrespectful, inconsiderate and selfish. Sure there are good people still out there, but the bad far outweigh the good.


3. Have you ever lived abroad? If not, would you consider it? Have I ever live abroad? I am a broad. Oh abroad…. Ha ha ha. In my finite mind I live abroad every single day. I work virtually with people from all over the world. It may not seem like it to others when I tell them about my job, but I get to experience different cultures from the comfort of my office on a daily basis. Would I consider living abroad? I don’t know. Never really gave it much thought until right this moment. I always wanted to go to Africa and save people, but hubby says, “NO, we are not doing that!”

4. What are your personal contributions towards reducing your carbon footprint? Okay so I feel like a dork because I really didn’t know what this question meant. I needed an example so I looked over to my smiley friend Janet. Let’s see, we live quite frugally. We don’t eat out, we prepare all of our meals at home. We shop once, maybe twice a month, we recycle everything, we compost, we garden, we preserve the fruits and we can the vegetables that we harvest. We plant trees and other flowers for the birds and bees. I’m always game for these kinds of things. Save our planet.

5. If I were to visit you in your town or city, what adventures would we experience there? Well you wouldn’t want to miss a pontoon tour of the largest purple martin roost in North America. Then there’s Riverbanks Zoo & Botanical Garden and the Columbia Fireflies minor league baseball team at Segra Park.  Or right in our back yard you could pick all the figs and pecans your little heart desires.  There are also grapefruit trees that are growing and many different vegetables in the garden.

That puts an end to my questions.  Hopefully I will be back to chat again in the not so distant future.  If you’d like to play, link your post in the comments section below.

As always with these awards, there are rules attached:

  1. Introduce the person who nominated you. Tamara
  2. Answer the questions they have asked you in their post. (see above)
  3. Nominate and notify a bunch of other people. Actually nine people. Which basically makes these awards modern times’ chain letters.  (I feel like I can’t do this right now because I’ve been out of the loop for too long, maybe when I get back in the groove of things.)
  4. Give them new five questions they will have to answer. 
    1. What’s your favorite childhood toy?
    2. If you could meet anyone (dead or alive) who is it?
    3. The mountains or the ocean for inspiration?
    4. What’s your favorite time of day and why?
    5. What do you want to be remembered for?  What’s your legacy?
  5. Provide the link of the award creator of the Ideal Inspiration Blogger Award ←

Thank you Tam!

Until next time,

Cheers

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,

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.

Vicious Life Cycles ~ Letters from the Heart #atozchallenge


Dear Barbarinie:

It sucks that you picked vicious life cycles as today’s topic. Sometimes you have to face it. Life is not all skittles and beer or rainbows and butterflies. Sometimes life wants to push you down and fuck ya stick it you where the sun don’t shine. Not so much life, really, but people in your life or situations that come about that involve people in your life. You know like the ebb and flow of the Atlantic tide.

Vicious life cycles are something like generational sin. It goes on and on until someone decides to stop it. Not that they can because you have tried to right the wrongs. Just because you speak it true, won’t make it real. You cannot control how others will react to your desires. You are not the Christ (coming up in a future post).

Vicious are the things in life that you want to change, you try to change, but you don’t have the power to change them. So what can you do?


1. Don’t sweat the small stuff. In a day/week/month/year it won’t matter anyways.
2. Realize all people are messy. They deal with the same things you do.
3. Show grace. Everyone needs to be shown a little clemency.
4. Know when to just shut up. Remember what Thumper said in Bambi.


Practice these few things and that will be the beginning of stopping the vicious life cycles you find yourself in with people. Just know life is not always going to be smooth as velvet 🧶

Go have a good day now.
Your constant and faithful,

Can you believe we are on our last week of the challenge?  How’s everyone doing?  Having a good time?  I am going to be bummed to see it end.  How about you guys?  Are you going to keep at it and continue blogging on a daily/weekly/monthly basis?  How do you fit it all in? Just curious.

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,

                   

 

 

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.

 

Opportunity for Growth ~ Letters from the Heart #atozChallenge

Dear Fortune Hunter:

What in the world will you come up with next? Opportunities for growth? What is it that you want to grow in? That chocolate cake is a great opportunity for thigh and butt growth. Pretty sure that’s not what you were talking about when you put that on your theme reveal list.

You were probably thinking more of growth being on the spiritual side. That Bible study you have been working on It’s All Under Control has helped a lot. The struggle is real, my friend and you will deal with it on a daily basis. Control is not your friend.

At the time of writing this letter you were a little convicted for letting an opportunity slip by. One of the crew members on Tall Cool ☺ne’s Crew was given the chance to move up on the crew and take a new position with a small pay increase. He just had to show some effort that he wanted to do it by going to get a permit and then doing some training to get a certain license. (All paid for and done at work.) His response was “The little bit of money is not worth my time and effort”.

This convicted you a little because it was similar to a response you used when a new opportunity came up at work. The opportunity you gave up was a new position that offered an increase in salary and flexible shift.

While writing this letter you just talked yourself through it. The thing that is different between the crew member and you is about 35 years. You have to take courses on your own time. What do you want to do with your free time?  It is not paid for by the company until you pass the test. Then you are not guaranteed the position. Also not sure that your hours would be the same.

Maybe you will regret not engaging in the opportunity. One door closes, another one opens. Sometimes you have to know when to say no. That, my friend, is opportunity growth.



Until next time,
Your constant and faithful

[Side-note: this is the short version. You promised your readers you would keep these posts short and sweet. The full version can be found in that cool Orange 🍊 journal you bought for yourself just for this project]

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.

Helping Those in Need ~Letters From the Heart #A2ZChallenge2021

Hello, Hello, Howdy and Hey-hey whaddaya say?

Your letter today is going to be short and sweet because Tall Cool ☺ne decided since it was Thirsty Thursday you guys would pretend you were back in high school and instead of him going home after Rockford Files he stayed, and you guys played… into the wee hours of the night (or morning). You are getting a little too old for that on a “school” night and it’s gonna be a long day on three hours of sleep.

Today’s offering is about helping those in need. You might interpret that to mean helping homeless helpless people. Not today my friend. Help is support for anyone who needs it. Just because you work at home don’t think there are not opportunities to help. It comes in various ways.

It can be as simple as a smile 🙂 over the phone ☎️ and if you try really hard people can hear that smile 🙂 in your voice. A gesture 🤙, a peace sign ✌️, a tip of the hat 👒, a nod of the head 🙃, even a like 👍on a social media site or other places you interact with people virtually.

Helping is a gift. Not everyone has the personality to be a helper…some are antagonists. Avoid them at all costs…just kidding, those are the ones who need the help the most. Remember that the next time someone comes along that you would rather avoid. Be the one person in their day that shines.

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.

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! ♥

Examining Faults ~ Letters from the Heart



Today, for your listening pleasure I’ve included a song from one of your favorite bands. This song always brings forth some sort of self-examination.

Dear Barbie:

These letters we are writing to our older self are not only to humor you in your old age, but to help you in the now and present time. Isn’t is easy to look at someone else and pick out everything you see wrong with them? It’s E-Evil 👿 and easy to find fault with someone else. It takes a strong person to admit their shortcomings to themselves, let alone share them for everyone to see. Everyone should take a few moments every now and again to examine their own faults. The first part of fixing something is recognizing it’s there. So let’s go through the list, shall we?

→ You are as impatient as the night is long.
→ We already know you leave the cupboard doors open from a previous post.
→ You interpret a situation, then become irritated when the person doesn’t respond the way you think they should.
→ You snore.
→ Your hair is everywhere.
→ The piles of clutter are out of hand.
→ You take on more projects than you can handle by yourself and get upset when Tall Cool ☺ne doesn’t want to participate.

Ok let’s not beat you up too much. That’s a pretty good list to start. Very good, now you can ponder over that list, and tomorrow we will take a look at fixing some of those faults.

Galatians 6:4 ~ Let each one examine his own work, and then he will have rejoicing in himself alone and not in another.

FOR MY FELLOW A2Z BLOGGERS:

I got my  A2Z Blogging T-Shirt yesterday so I can sport it today.  YAH for me.

Anyone reading who want’s to sign up for the challenge do it today, because the master list closes tomorrow. 

I’m trying to do some of the BONUS CHALLENGES for fun, are 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.

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.

Lost a Friend

As the Blogging A-Z Challenge draws closer, it brings on a bitter sweet kind of feeling. I love the challenge and the opportunity to get back to writing. But this year, I am going to miss the comments from an old friend. Berta always had something nice to say. She even commented in a constructive critical way on the posts that she didn’t agree with. She was always there to offer words of encouragement, letting me know how much she liked my writing and how I had to keep at it. I’m keeping at it, Berta.

Whenever we spent the night when she was babysitting, Berta used to say “Bye” instead of “Good night”. She’d say if we didn’t wake up, she wanted to make sure she said “good-bye”. Last week she went to sleep and didn’t wake up. She was a trooper for sure but that seventh round with cancer finally wore her out and she was tired. God brought her home.

I think about those old adages: You never know how much you miss something until it’s gone. Appreciate it now because tomorrow is not promised. You never know the true value of a moment until it becomes a memory. We take so much for granted. Not just material things, like the GREAT TOILET PAPER SHORTAGE of 2020, but relationships, people … too many times we take people for granted. Relationships are a precious thing.

I have made so many mistakes in relationships. Let me tell ya, reconciling broken relationships is not as easy as saying what you think or feel at the moment. Kind of like losing weight is not as easy as eating a whole bag of jelly beans in one sitting. I’ve had some come to Jesus moments with taming my tongue, and I’m still restraining, I can assure you. But when someone you’re close to dies, you kind of think about the other people or relationships in your life that you’ve messed up, and haven’t take the time to fix. Or at least I do.

I wish I could right all the wrongs. I wish I had inserted my foot before the times that I opened my mouth. I wish I didn’t hurt people with tactless things I said or wrote. I can’t change the past. What is done is done. I can only press onward and forward. I hope one day to look back on all these posts and see how much I have changed from being the cynical controversial writer, to a more respectful humble journalist. This is my legacy. When I die, I want my writing to live on, and I can only hope it will be kind and noteworthy.

In closing, God has made each one of us. We all have a special gift to bring glory to the Kingdom. We should use those talents accordingly. We should never take for granted the blessings God has graced us with (people, relationships, l♥ve).

Thank you Berta, for always being that kind and encouraging person who pushed me onward with writing.  Thank you that no matter how hard and lonely it was while I was writing, I could always count on a comment from you when you were able. Thank you for always taking the time to read my posts. I am sorry that I never told you how much that meant to me.  I will never forget you.

Until next time,

~Barbie

 

The Small Joys in Life

 

I decided not to neglect my blogs anymore. Writing is one of the sure things that bring me joy. I’ve not spent a lot of time doing it lately because I have let other things get in the way of my joy. Funny how we do that sometimes. We worry about our spouses, our jobs, our children, or our parents. Perhaps the worry is for our pets, or the bills, maybe even the housework (okay not the housework; no one said that, ever).

We live in this world of instant gratification. Sometimes we forget the value of the simple things that might not seem like much, but they really are important. That first cup of coffee in the morning. Being cuddled up on the couch in a pair of worn jammies. A journal and a pen in hand. The cat laying close by. The warmth of the sun shining through the window. A good morning greeting from a child. So many positives to be thankful for.

Our neighbors have begun putting up Christmas decorations. I love seeing the red bows pasted on the window sills of their house. It reminds me of the season.

The leaves have covered our lawn. I’ve raked them no less than three weekends in a row. Today I look out and see that the trees have dropped leaves and covered the lawn yet again. We compete with the squirrels to find the hidden treasures underneath all of those brown crunchy leaves. This year the pecan trees brought forth a huge harvest. My mouth is watering for the famous Captain Morgan’s Pecan Pie. 

With the holidays upon us I consider the people who struggle during this time of year. The struggle is real because I experience it too. I have such high expectations of what the holidays should be. I set myself up for failure so often because when they don’t turn out the way I portray them in my mind, it turns into a huge disappointment. It depresses me. Sometimes I start my depression even before the holidays arrive. Tall Cool One reminds me I am not in control (sometimes I hate that truth). I am learning to just be thankful for the things I have and the things I can control. It is a slow process but a sure one. It is a reminder… joy is an attitude. What are the small things that bring you joy?

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. 

Respecting Relationship Boundaries



Boundaries are anything that help differentiate one person from another. Age, gender, social status, skin color, vocabulary, where we live, even our emotional state can provide a certain protective boundary. Sometimes boundaries are misunderstood.

We all want relationships. The most basic need in life is for relationships. We want input and teaching from others. We want to learn different things and share the knowledge we’ve learned. We want friendships. In desire, everything comes with a price. We give a little, we take a little.

Standing up for our boundaries can be misconstrued. Sometimes people will think we are being rude and insensitive. Trespassing on other people’s boundaries carries consequences. If I do this, I know this will happen, if I do that, I know something else will happen. From a young age we learned these basic instincts.  Don’t touch the hot stove or you will get burned.   

Attitudes and beliefs are what we accept as being true. There are some people who want us to change our beliefs and attitudes to what they believe and accept as being true. Perhaps some family members, friends, relatives, or even neighbors to name a few.  People who refuse to respect the boundaries we have set ooze negative energy and leave us feeling worse whenever we’re around them. Be on guard for these toxic personalities. Quickly set boundaries and let them know what will and what will not be tolerated. 

Do you have anyone like this in your life?

• Lie on a regular basis
• Take advantage of your kindness
• Don’t respect your boundaries
• Manipulate you in order to get what they want
• Put you down
• Don’t encourage you to pursue your goals
• Don’t consider other people’s feelings or needs
• Feel entitled
• Are frequently angry or aggressive
• Rarely apologize
• Blame others and don’t take responsibility for their actions
• Drain your energy
• Have a lot of “drama” or problems, but don’t want to change
• Think the rules don’t apply to them
• Talk, but don’t listen

People might be angry or offended by our choices even though we aren’t setting boundaries to be mean or difficult. Boundaries are a way to protect ourselves and maintain individuality as well as sanity. Stay safe and be sure to practice social distancing virtually as well as while you are out in public. When boundaries are not accepted, sometimes we have to accept that we are better off without the toxicity in our lives.




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.

ICONIC



So when I think of an icon, I think of those little squares on my phone that I have to press to open an application. Sometimes I hate those things because they often ask me for a password that I can’t remember. When I think of iconic I think of something considered important. The definition of iconic out of my eleventh edition Merriam Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary is this: “a conventional religious image typically painted on a small wooden panel and used in the devotions of Eastern Christians.” How ironic that the word iconic was brought to my attention on Good Friday. (Thank you, Michael)

I wanted to take a look and see what the world considers iconic. As I was scrolling through the history of pictures tagged to be iconic it struck me oddly because anything and every depending on who you are could be considered iconic. The definition for iconic changes as does the times we live in.

One thing that never changes and that is God’s love for you. Good Friday is iconic to remind us that our amazing Father sent His One and Only Son to die on the Cross for us. Not just for me, not just for you, but for everyone and anyone who accepts His gift. A gift so great that every human should want to accept it. Some people may not choose to accept the gift He offers so freely. Do not be ashamed of the things you have done. He will wash away your sin like a blanket of new fallen snow. He’s knocking at your door. Can’t you hear Him? Let Him into your heart.

May God bless,






Welcome to the A-Z Blogging Challenge. This year I think it will bring a lot more people together with the epidemic going on right. Being quarantined means more people will flock to the web looking for things to do. This is a great way to meet new people. 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.


GREAT


Today is a GREAT day. Twenty nine years ago, baby number #2, my s☼nshine came into my life. A baby boy! It has been a journey for sure. I can’t say that it was all unicorns and sunshine, but I wouldn’t change a thing. Together we have gone through many trials though his 29 young years. I’m sure he has gone through many of his own that I quite possibly have not even heard about. He suggested to me that I use the word GREAT. He also included the snapshot for my post today.  Happy Birthday S☼nshine!  He is enjoying his birthday in the great outdoors.

Great are the minutes and the hours and the days and the weeks and the months and the years we get to spend with our children. Great are the opportunities we have to teach our children. Great is when we never, ever take them for granted.

Great is the time that we get to spend together talking with each other virtually. Great is sharing pictures and comments and games with each other when we cannot be together. Great is when you wake up in the morning and see a message from one of your children just saying “morning mom”.

Great is what we get to make with our days, and our time, and with our children. Any time and opportunity we have together can be great if you have the right attitude. Enjoy your children. They are GREAT!





Welcome to the A-Z Blogging Challenge. This year I think it will bring a lot more people together with the epidemic going on right. Being quarantined means more people will flock to the web looking for things to do. This is a great way to meet new people. 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.

FLASHBACK

Think about last year right around Labor Day weekend, or maybe even Christmas time. Flashback to the things we were doing, activities we enjoyed, trips we took.  Think about the  visits to the grocery store that seemed trivial just such a short time ago.

Flashback to the days of walking into the restroom and seeing the sign that encouraged employees:  ‘Employees must wash their hands before returning to work’. I remember seeing so many people in these rest rooms that never paid attention to the signs. I guess they thought because they were not employees it didn’t pertain to them. 

Flashback to the days when toilet paper and paper towels filled at least a whole isle at the grocery store. The days of going in and picking up the weekly supply. The days of not having to stand in line and wait to be let in the store.  The days of not being allotted one package to each customer as if we lived in a communist country.

Flashback to more important events. Fellowship on Sundays and hugging fellow believers. Visiting your elderly parents at the nursing home without concern of spreading a sickness to them. Sunday afternoon dinners with your grown children and having all the grand kids run around the house. Just plain getting together with family and friends for cookouts and fun times.

My flashback is September last year … I seriously hope we get to do it again.



Flashback to a time when our world once was different. What are we going to do to make sure things don’t get worse? Do your part. Listen to our leaders. Don’t ignore what is happening.





Welcome to the A-Z Blogging Challenge. This year I think it will bring a lot more people together with the epidemic going on right. Being quarantined means more people will flock to the web looking for things to do. This is a great way to meet new people. 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.