Monday, November 14, 2016

Been There, Done That!

Imagine if he'd lost.

The thought occurred to me on the way to Mass. It would be so much worse for everyone. Stay with me now....

That fired-up population that supported Trump was being stoked into a frenzy of hatred, insults, all based on fear. Knowing they will soon become a minority in this country frightened them silly! It was predicted many years ago that the Hispanic population would grow at a considerable rate in the United States. Guess some of them had the book "MegaTrends" read to them. Sorry. I mean the rumor got around. Hence, the Great Wall of Trump.

Many rumors got around. When President Obama was elected, there were rumors he would become a dictator and have white people picking cotton. They were only off by 8 years. KIDDING! I will respect the Office of the Presidency. I will pray for the man that occupies the office. I will pray for his soul that seemed so disgustingly, dare I say, evil?, to be changed by God's grace. I've handed the reins over to God, which is what needed to happen for my own peace.

For the United States to have any semblance of Peace, this all needed to happen in just the way it did. The pseudo-manners needed to be seen for what it was. The fear, anger, hurt, and offenses needed to be heard on both sides if only to realize there are those feelings existing on all sides of humanity. I have plenty of theories about what will occur next but they mean nothing in the face of what he's promised.

It's, to use a weak term, unfortunate, that voters will find none of the promises kept, that they will lose more money, insurance, have more taxes to pay, and, sorry, no wall will be built. At least a physical one will not be built. IF the citizens of this country continue to be divided since Trump stirred the pot, we will all lose. Many cannot see that yet. Trust me, I hope I'm wrong. Still, all signs point to the egotist and what he can gain from where he is now.

He's currently stating that he doesn't want to live in the White House all the time but in his NYC penthouse apartment. So the King can look down upon the rest of the World as he's always envisioned? That's what he's concerned about now. Amongst all the work he'll need to hit the ground running to do, his penthouse and businesses are on his mind? OK. Those in his camp hint he didn't get the full job description before beginning this wild ride. I believe that. I say his party wanted anyone from the party to be there. I wish them luck controlling his impulsive, compulsive nature. Voters will find that much of what he proposed doing is not Constitutional, irrational, and, certainly, not under the description of President.

They may be very disappointed, in other words.

Me and people like me? We've been through so much in this country that this will be a cakewalk. That's why I encourage others not to lose their minds over this, try to soothe the angry rhetoric, and calm souls whenever I'm able. I do this only after I've checked my own feelings, of course. It's a struggle. But, this is just another bump on the American Road. We are the toddler of the World and were just given a loaded pistol.

For those too young to know or those who haven't studied U.S. History, we've been here before and survived with less. The young people protesting in the streets of all races and sexual orientations, my heart goes out to them. I realize they are hurting and want to get it all out of them. The emotions are running high. We mustn't let the emotions sap up all of our time and energy, though. Petitions will not remove Trump nor will it make Clinton president. A biggie would have to happen before the inauguration in January. So far he's done everything short of burn down an orphanage on Christmas Eve and still has support. Despite the conspiracy theories and dissatisfaction with the Election process, there is a Democratic process that was followed and must continue to be respected or we are all sunk. It's the rubber band holding this country together, these days.

Everyone has an issue that they thought would be resolved by whoever they voted for. That's not how it works. For instance, abortion is legal, with conditions in several States. Both parties have had their chance in office over the years and neither has actually done anything about it, for OR against. The reason they ignore it once elected is because it is a 'hot' issue that secures their base for their party. That's all. No one will ever change it. Google "stare decisis et quieta non movere". It is Latin and means to stand by and adhere to decisions and not disturb what is settled." Good luck finding a Supreme Court Justice of any belief that will mess with it. We can't agree on anything, let alone something as important as that law. This is the reason I disagreed with the American Roman Catholic Churches and their stances which were obviously against what Pope Francis could clearly see yet all Christians could not.

Anyway, there are many other issues to consider that won't necessarily be pointed at as moral ones, unless we are speaking about our planet's health, the benefits to elderly and disabled, giving helping hands to those who need it, not splitting up families and more. It makes us look like we are not as loving and charitable as I know we can be.

Meanwhile, I've had good friends for years that thought differently and could not discern why I could not endorse the man. These are truly good people with kind hearts. Every question was met with what sound like Trump's voice. No one was thinking for themselves or about others, at all. It pained me with all that was said and done against people who look like me, against women in general, they could still say he was the better candidate. They couldn't see. It made me question if they've ever really seen 'me'.  Are they among those who've sold their souls to the Devil for money or the promise of more money? Do they really not see the negativity brought out in others by him? Did they not see the darkness in the eyes at rallies, the physical attacks on others, the lack of reason and love? It made me question so much it shook my faith in man...a little. It did confirm that there is a faction feeling they must make others feel poorly in order to make themselves feel worthy. That is sad...But!....

Hey, still me over here. Will always be. This uniform I wear, this colorful outer shell, is decorative, yes. It is the first thing others see about me. But, it can cause fear, hatred, and breaks down communication. It makes others believe I lack intelligence, skills, or experience. It makes others think of me as 'less than'...less than human, not kind or loving to others and without a loving family. Still, some want to touch it. Some want to own it. They wonder if it comes off, if it's soft or rough, if they will like it or not. Not if they'll like ME or not.  I think that's the true fear. They might like it...and me. Then they have a real dilemma. They will care. Egads!

You think it's not easy being green? Try being brown in the USA. The country's mask was ripped off and shocked itself and the World. Thank you, Mr. Trump. It is a good thing you did, even if you don't realize it.

Reboot Challenge? No more 'tolerate' other races, seek to understand. No "agree to disagree", have the discussion not a fight. Love your enemy and everyone else, too!

Wednesday, September 14, 2016

One Thing I've Learned....

Alright, maybe two or three.

1) No one thinks the same as you do, 2) No one can do what you do, and 3) No one else can BE you.

I should end this blog right there. But, you guys know me by now and I am incapable of that.

When I wrote my first book and published it, although it's under the pseudonym Rostand Reads, I had many people thinking and saying, "That came out of HER?"

What I write was very different than the 'me' others know. It should be that way or it's not good fiction, in my humble opinion. It surprises many that, yes, she has an imagination. So do you. If you don't write or even think and speak honestly and truthfully from your inner being, you risk being seen as a totally different person than intended.

You are what you think. Share it. It gets others going, too.

Getting the first book out there shocked many. The second and third of the series will, too.

When did she do that? How did she do it? Why didn't she say something about it? I have my reasons. When I complete something is when others find out about it, normally. That is to avoid the naysayers and fear-mongers of the world afraid to move and veer off-course. Not that I have any special talents that I know of, but when you do what only you can do, it's done in the way that only YOU can do it. Does that make sense?

For every step you take in life, it's yours and only yours. No one can step for you. No one else can bring you up or down (or shouldn't be allowed to!). No one is on your journey but you. Walk on. Oh, whatever, RUN if you want to!

There is only one You ever created on Earth. You have not existed in the past and will not one day in the future. What you leave behind you will matter to someone somewhere. Make it count. I'm leaving a beautiful, accomplished and fearless daughter behind one day, for sure. I don't expect to leave masterpieces behind in writing, painting, composing, or the cure for the common cold, but I'll tell you a secret.

Someone I greatly admire pointed this out to me recently and I have to share it.

The way you can tell how a person lives is not by judging them but observing them. It tells how they are and will be with you. It's how they treat the people they are responsible for in life.

You can see how parents are with their children, how politicians are with their constituents (and families!), husband and wives with each other, teachers with students, owners/managers with their get my drift. There is a wealth of information there about "the Person". In saying this, I realize, personally, how I must be aware of those I'm responsible for, including myself.

Be the person others can turn to. Be the person who cares for themselves. Be kind to yourself. Be the one that is willing to help and to listen. Be the one that respects and encourages others. Be the one that cheers when others do well. Be the one that loves everyone and wants the best for them and yourself. For there truly is only one 'you'.

Reboot Challenge? Start being the best YOU today.

Sunday, August 28, 2016

Dove Right In!

With every blog post, I've tried to encourage others to live their lives to the fullest, in peace, try new everything, and love everyone. I, mostly, have hinted at leaving your comfort zone, not in that terminology.

Well. I decided to take my own advice.

I wrote a book. It may not be a classic any day. But, I wrote it. I edited it. I designed a cover for it. I self-published it. And, I market it on my own. I learned each step along the way and made mistakes that I had to brush off and start over and start all over again. It's been quite the learning experience. There are still quite a few things left to understand and grasp, but you get the main idea.

Who knew that I could do such a thing? It's not bragging. It's telling you that leaving your comfort zone that keeps you in one place and miserable or stagnant, is not as difficult as you think. I want to shout it from the rooftops but only my neighbors would hear me. Not sure my husband would bail me out or have me committed to an asylum, if I did.

So, that's the main topic I thought of this morning. Whatever it is that you long to do, do it! Whatever it is that you desire to learn or try, try it! It may not be the best, but it will be YOUR best. And that's really all that matters in the long run, right?

I refuse to be 80 years old one day (God willing!) and regretting that I never tried. It's not for the huge amount of sales one imagines. It's not to get my name out there because I publish under a pseudonym. It's not for bragging rights. It's just because I wanted to experience it.

There is more under wrap for this story, as a collection, for other book ideas I have on various topics, and who knows what will come next. We all have a book in us waiting to be written. This is what I imagined from The Five Chinese Brothers and Pippi Longstocking to Agatha Christie and Victor Hugo growing up. I'm an information-junkie and that will never change. My imagination can take any news article and bring up questions to be solved, lots of "what-ifs" and change it into a tale of whatever spills out.

Fear must have no part in any of the process. "What will people think?" "What if it doesn't sell?" "What if it's just baaaaaad?" Who cares? The process was for you and no one else. I want to get this book out there just because I want to share it with others. There is no other reason. If they like it, great. If not, O.K. my feelings aren't hurt. In fact, I encourage ALL honest reviews and opinions. It helps me become a better writer and stronger person than if all my family and friends said "That was fantabulous!" but didn't mean it. The bad comments will never kill you, I've decided.

If anyone is interested, it's here with probably some formatting issues I missed, but the story is a good short-read with more to come.

(Don't forget that review!!)

Book One ,We Were Choi and Lee is being sold on for Kindle, etc. and paperbacks. It's free for Kindle until 8/29/16 as a promotion to jumpstart it!

Reboot Challenge? DO IT! Whatever it is!

Tuesday, August 9, 2016

Time Has Come Today

There was a post in my head that was thoughtful, relevant, detailed, meaningful, planned, and ready to go! And, then I fell asleep.

I think we all know how that goes. If ya don't write it down, it's GONE! Poof!

So, you get this. It's almost as good. Maybe. I don't remember. If I do, you'll be the first to know.


Losing that amazing post DID prompt a consideration of Time and how it passes in our lives. I may have said it before, and not to sound morbid only truthful, from the time we are born, we begin to die. It's just a fact. No one's getting off this planet alive. I made your day just then, didn't I?

This is why every moment we have should be made to count! Every day we wake up should be when we think of what we want to experience and DO that day, what opportunity we want to MAKE happen, not wait for it, and the GOOD we want to leave behind when we are gone. It doesn't matter if our name is in a History book as long as it's in someone's heart and memory.

We should be making experiences, meeting others that are not of the same neighborhood, let alone the same culture. We should be learning a new skill or hobby or language. We should be travelling to see the rest of the World and its inhabitants, and not afraid to do it. We should, simply, speak to a stranger and/or offer help to one. You never know what that could mean to another's day...or life. Strangers are only those who we haven't met yet.

Time has come today to not be afraid to live our lives and not stay in a 'comfort zone' forever.

Those who create, music, write stories and plays and scripts are successful ONLY because they make that trip outdoors or inside themselves. Yes, the scariest place can be going inside oneself and learning who you are and what you are made of. But, if one lives in the one place, doing the same thing everyday, seeing the same people, having the same conversations, it IS the definition of insanity if you expect something new and wonderful to happen in your life.

We were not made that way. We were not made to be stagnant. That's why we have free Will and free Spirits to fly and move and change and GROW. We were not meant to be depressed at our situations but to have the courage and curiosity to change it. We are meant for so much more.

But we have to take that first step in the unknown direction to start.

Reboot Challenge this week? Don't waste your Time. Soar and be absolutely fabulous at it!

Wednesday, July 27, 2016

10 Christian Myths


This has been sitting on my mind and heart for a while since we have been going through turbulent times in the U.S.A. in the last few weeks (or decades).

There is a tension in the air that everyone can feel and trust me, Satan, whether you believe he exists or not, is sitting back sipping a cup of tea like a Kermit the Frog meme, loving every minute of it. Whether or not you believe, please continue reading just to educate yourself on a few matters, in case the topic comes up.

1) Christianity is a made-up religion used as a crutch by those able to be 'brain-washed' to believe it.
    There is a deep history of theologians, scientists, scholars, priests, nuns, laypeople, who have studied, written, and 'believed'. They were not dummies or blind followers but great thinkers and fact-checkers of their day. There are many who started out trying to disprove Christianity and Christians and found themselves converting because they couldn't find anything but the Truth in it. It happens to this day. There are no Crusades. There is evangelization but not in the political meaning being used by Christians in the States. Brothers and Sisters are seeking and learning. I believe that is why some don't seek the information. To be proven incorrect or have to question what you believe can be a painful adjustment. They'd be pulled toward what they 'think' they aren't ready to commit to and being a Christian AIN'T for wimps. That's where the Faith comes in. "Be not afraid."

2) All Christians hate women who want or have had abortions and the clinics,  different ethnicities, homosexual or transgender men or women, and are all bigots.
  Christians are not taught to hate as Christians. That's a personal problem for each to seek Guidance about. The ones that gather and show their a--, I mean their ugly side, are not following the teachings of Jesus Christ and His Church. We may hate the sin and love the sinner but would never disrespect our neighbors, their funerals their families and friends, their lives as our brothers and sisters, their civil rights, or try to prevent Love because that is preventing Jesus who IS Love from making Himself seen. We cannot condone the acts taken by all of our brothers and sisters. We pray they come to some realization that the sin is not necessary for Love to be shown.

3) Christians are trying to control women's health.
  A Christian will try to offer an alternative be it assistance to keep a child, adoption, or a method that won't harm women trying not to get pregnant. The science behind the Creighton Fertility method revealed that it is as effective as birth control pills. I'm targeting particularly pills (shot, implants) as they cause the most harm to women's health. Also, problems present themselves when women stop using these types of  contraceptives and should they desire to conceive later. Please see for more information on how to safely avoid or encourage pregnancy.

 It's about knowing our own bodies and when to say 'yes' or 'no'. It's respecting our own bodies and our partners respect it as well to realize it's a 'yes' or a 'no' time. It actually respects women more and gives more control to women than the pharmaceutical companies do with the harmful and less effective, means of knocking on the door of your womb. There are plenty of people trying to conceive that could be helped by this method and it has been proven to work where IVF has not.

If adoption is not the manner a woman has chosen, there are worldwide organizations to help her to cope with her decision. Everyone says, "It's no big deal. I'll get over it.". However, there are studies that show the many women who've regretted the decision at some point in their lives, maybe not immediately, but at some point. And as a Christian, you better believe forgiveness IS there if they seek it. God and His Children are there for her. If one Christian doesn't help, there's another. Don't give up.

4) Speaking of which, Christians are unforgiving.
  Christians believe in Jesus Christ. God appeared in love and weakness in the form of a poor infant, not as King of the Universe everyone expected in a Messiah, in order to live as Man, understand Man, suffer and die for Man, enter Hell and save God's children from eternal death from Original Sin (see Adam and Eve) and rise again. Now, there are disagreements on some of the principles of the Faith that turn others away. This is one of them. Even your holiest, shout in the aisles, and praise the Lord Christian will have someone in their lives that they won't forgive and walk away from, talk trash about, ignore, neglect or fight. This is not the behavior we are called to exhibit so don't get that wrong if you are a nonbeliever or non-practicing Christian. We believe that if Jesus says in the Bible to forgive your brother Seventy times Seven times (and that's only an example meaning "always") then we do. That's all there is to it. We cannot even pray, in good Faith, the "Our Father" (you may know it. Jesus taught his disciples to pray it and we do daily). That prayer specifically asks God to forgive us OUR trespasses AS WE forgive others who trespass against US. Soooo...we are asking for forgiveness but can't give it ourselves? Or we give it stingily? Or we take it back? Then we'll be forgiven the way we forgave others. That's a hot topic and a bad place to be.

5) Christianity is a special "club" that only Saints can join. Sinners need not apply.
  The Church calls all our brothers and sisters because all were made by God in our Beliefs, whatever religion you profess to be, if any. The Healthy don't need a Physician. From my studies of World Religions, it is the only one where a God, in this case, just well, God reaches toward Mankind in Love and Desire for Man to love and desire to be with Him. Christians can reach up and, figuratively, grab his hand, instead of climbing a mountain to get to Him, saying the right things and doing the 'right' thing. We just have to acknowledge and love Him and others. Simple. With others Man has mankind doing something extraordinary to reach Him or the place that is their goal. Christianity is full of Love and Peace. Don't get me wrong. There have been times in History where this wasn't shown but don't blame Christianity. Like today, MAN does evil or forces others against their will in the name of God. They have to atone for that. No judgment needed down here from anyone trying to answer the door of their glass house with a plank in their eye on Earth. That's just how it works. This is why you cannot expect every Christian you meet to be perfect. There's no use tossing that into a conversation in order to shame or discredit Christianity. Of course, we are not perfect! We are flawed humans. But we have a chance at Eternal Life. Pardon me but Thank God for that! And, yes, we will die for that rather than turn our backs on the Lord. Martyrdom? Yeah, Duh! That's what you call it.

6) "If their God is so good aren't all the Christians supposed to prosper" i.e. be rich, have a big house, nice car, designer clothes and money to burn.
   Christians prosper, just not always in that way. God answers prayers but He is not an ATM. Our Bible tells us it is easier for a camel to get through the eye of a needle (the small openings in town walls in Israel) than a rich man into Heaven. There's a reason for that statement. Once people are dazzled by currency, they stop seeing the Lord and spending quality time with Him. Either they want it, want more of it, or have it and want more of it. Let those thoughts mean Love of God, not dollars. Christians are called to help one another, to be charitable with whatever we have. There's a Biblical story of a woman that gives her last penny. Foolish woman! The man who shares his last bread with a neighbor? Dummy! Shoulda kept it! A Woman that pours expensive perfumed oil over Jesus' feet and washes it with her hair? Judas saw that and blew his top! I'm just going to say, google the definition of Humility. Works and alms are counted. If people have that money and are rolling like that, as they say, and believe they were the ones who got it all on their own without a "By-your-leave" or "Thank you" to God. Silly rabbit! God didn't have to wake you up and keep you strong and healthy enough to get it, you know? If they don't have it, they pray to God to get it. Yes, God is our Father and wants the best for us, which is what He offers for all Eternity. It has nothing to do with greenbacks and I would take it over a McMansion any day.

7) Christians are always happy and healthy and so are their families or they did something to displease God.
  Suffering is unavoidable. The worst things you can imagine can happen to you or someone you know and love. This is not a 'punishment' from God. This is not God being 'mean' or 'uncaring'. The prayers were heard. His answers always Yes, No, or I have something better. Nothing could be better than to be in His presence. Argue if you must. (Read Old Testament Book of Job)

8) Christians can't even agree with one another.
  Actually, this is true, in a large sense. There are different Bibles, interpretations, church teachings, and information has been dropped and lost over the years in favor of a more "cafeteria-like" religion. Pick and choose the parts you like. That won't change in our lifetime. But it will change. It began 1500 years after Christianity began and has been convoluted ever since. We all do, however, believe in Jesus, in God, in the Holy Spirit, in the acts of Jesus to save our Souls, just not in the same way. As I said, it's changed in the last 500+ years.

9) Every Christian you encounter will argue, berate, scare, and stalk you into Conversion.
  Thousands upon thousands of nonbelievers were converted at a time by Jesus. Saints converted thousands at a time, like St. Anthony of Padua. As laypeople, we will likely mention Jesus to you, for something to think about for your Soul's sake since we care about you. Many of us can't keep quiet about Him. It's that way when you are in love, right? If it's done right, you will think about it, maybe pray about it, maybe do your own research on Christianity, and find that, yes, that's where you belong, hopefully. If not, we've done what we were called to do. We planted the seed. Many have this mixed up and must be forgiven. In their zeal and love for Christ, it may be off-putting to nonbelievers, even making others angry to the point of insulting of the entire Faith. Don't freak out! The Truth is, if we are living our Baptismal Promises, others usually come to us and ask what the deal is. That's an opening to discuss. I'll never beat you over the head with my Holy Bible, OK? Scouts honor!

10) Catholic Christians don't believe in Jesus or the Bible.
  Ooh! That's a biggie! That requires one to do a bit of research of the origin of the Bible you use, if you use one, and/or how the Church began in the first place. "Interpretation" is a fickle verb. Leave it to each person, pastor, and church and that's where the fiery debates begin. There shouldn't be any debate since we all agree on the basics. But Divide and Conquer is a winning strategy except we know WHO wins at the end of this story. Anyway. Let's just say the Catholic (Greek for 'universal') Church's Mass is prayed 24/7/365 by a Priest somewhere on the planet, even if it is one lone Priest in the middle of nowhere making his way to deserted area as the Apostles did. We have many beliefs that are not for the weak. They are not secret. Just ask someone who knows their Faith. Unfortunately, there are quite a few that have forgotten or been caught up in the World and no longer have correct answers. The Mass is derived from Jewish Tradition and practices making us Judeo-Christians as Jesus came as a Jewish man for Jewish people and then Gentiles. During a Mass you'll hear readings, prayers, praises, thanksgivings, prayer requests, psalms, from the Old Testament (which contains all of the Books of the original Bible), followed by more prayer, hymns, readings from the New Testament and, finally, the Gospel Reading and maybe a Homily (or known as a Sermon to others). And get this. It's an hour on Sundays and half-hour through the week. Oh, yes! There are Masses throughout the week including Saturdays. The Church Year includes the entire life of Christ from Conception to Pentecost (the start of the Church filled with the Holy Spirit. Another topic!). And the same readings from the Bible are being read all over the World on the same day. Does that sound like Catholics don't believe in Jesus and use the Bible? Sounds weird but we ingest Him as instructed in the Gospels. It's no symbol. Men walked away and left Jesus that night He pronounced it because He wasn't kidding when He told the disciples this is my body and my blood. Do this in remembrance of Me. That's why I said it's not for wimps, half-jokingly.

I won't get into a Catechism here. There are plenty of Churches throughout the World that have Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults classes to have questions answered and not be obligated to convert that can handle that for you.

My final word on the topic is this post is because I've been horrified by the Christian political supporters of all kinds who are encouraging and spewing hate-filled disruptions at rallies, conventions, on Facebook, in forums, in comments to articles and in person and hurting and killing one another. When did we stop using our words, reasonably, with one another? We all must be patient with each other and realize that worshippers of every type of faith are all searching in their own way for the Love and Peace of God.

Only they've never known it or have, sadly, wandered away from it. It's right there. There. Right there. No, not to the Right. Go left. Your other left. Uh-huh. Uh-huh. Uh-uh. Too far Left. A bit more centered. Yes! Got it? See it? Excellent! That's where the care for the humans on this planet and love need to be focused in God's name! Peace be with you.

For these I offer prayers today and always.

Reboot Challenge? Want to know more? Libraries and most bookstores are full of authentic, non-biased books telling the History of the Church's beginnings and expansion throughout the World, writings by Doctors of the Church, Saints like Teresé of Liseux (the Little Flower), about The Reformation, and more to explain why we are where we are today. Check 'em out or strike up a conversation with the one in the room you feel is the most at Peace with themselves and the World (you should be able to tell and it's not the one with the most charisma or friends. That's different.). Pick one this week. Get informed, if not converted. Thanks.

Friday, June 10, 2016

King, the Man-Dog

Once there was a dog named, King.

He lived in a house with my grandfather and grandmother.

As children, we were told by our grandfather that King was part German Shepherd and part WOLF...and we believed it. He was an odd blonde dog that stayed by my grandfather's side whenever he wasn't working. When my grandfather worked overnight at the steel mill, King laid between the kitchen and dining room, blocking the way to the bathroom but also right where he could protect my grandmother, if necessary. I like to believe that is why our grandfather got King in the first place. To guard his treasure. His wife.

Did I mention that King could speak?

My Mom and grandmother were witnesses to the day the doorbell rang and King, being King, knew he would have to go outside or into the back bedroom. He slowly picked himself up and said, "Oh, shit!".

His regular saying was "I don't know." but he frequently disguised it as a yawn.

When they were on their back porch relaxing, there you could find King. Faithful, watchful, always in the way, King. We, at least, I, couldn't tell when he was watching us kids or sleeping most of the time. I always felt a pair of eyes on us. That could be a young girl's imagination. So, I continued to jump rope, play hopscotch, bounce balls, and sit on the steps slurping popsicles and wondering what it would be like to climb the huge crabapple tree in the backyard. Weird as I was, and am, I always felt King was 'judging' me in some way. What a strange thought! As far as I know, King considered us as pieces of furniture!

Strangely, as I think of feeding my friend's dog while I stayed with her for a bit (although she had a rule not to feed him from the table!), we never fed King. We never played with him. Only our grandfather was allowed to toss the ball for King. Now, my friend's dog was sweet and curious, liked being pet and had a "little boy" bark for a German Shepherd. Chester immediately took a liking to me and would stand by me, sitting, and push his nose under my breast. OK. He was an odd one. My husband began calling him Chester the Molester. But, we split some Mexican food one night so we were cool, Chester and I. But, I digress.

Back to my earlier doggy experiences, our grandfather would get the can of Alpo, dump it into King's dish, and shmush it around a bit with the can to break it up. I remember absolutely hating the smell of it and the sound of it. When I eventually tried canned corn beef hash, I went back to that memory...Ugh!

King never bothered us and we never bothered him. We, instinctively, knew not to. Unless he was blocking the path to the dining room. Then he'd stay still while we jumped or stepped over him. No. King would not budge for anyone but the grandparents. Even then he might have required a shove with a slippered foot.

King was always there to send our grandfather off to work the 3rd shift and he was there to welcome him back in the morning. I often wonder if each time King might have had the thought that our grandfather was never coming back each night. King wasn't a 'jumpy' happy dog. He was a 'chill' one. King made note and went back to lie down if anything happened out of the ordinary. He just did his job as being protector and Man's best friend for many, many years.

I think King was always an old dog. We never made it past the one-sided admiration I secretly had for him.

I miss that proud old dog.

Sunday, May 15, 2016

I Took A Walk On The Wild Side and Fell Down

I ran. I ignored my increasing problems. I went to meetings. I ran errands. I drove here and there. I missed meals. I stressed and didn't even know it. I felt the weakness coming. I'm not a total idiot...just a stubborn one.

After walking down a path like I'd had one too many Tequila shots with a cane, I had to admit. Uh, this isn't quite right.

Therefore, as I made the morning step up to the scale and the hip flexor said, " Not today, Dear!", down I went. It was comical, actually. No, really! I'm glad there wasn't a camera to catch it, still.

With Multiple Sclerosis, you never know what's going to hit and when, when it will stop and correct itself or if it will, at all. It's very much like Life. Unpredictable. Yes. That's the word.

I ended up with an enjoyable 5-day stay at the hospital. Don't be sorry. We had the "fun" room with a great view of the river leading out to the Bay, my roommate and I! We were the room nurses and aides came to just to hang out. Although my neighbor was very ill, she was also very funny. That helped a lot. A nurse we laughed with often, was explaining to her about vasovagal syncope, which can happen when people strain trying to have a bowel movement and pass out. That's the short explanation. How we got on the subject is still unknown to me. My roomie who was older than me, whispers to her, "Is it like a really good orgasm?" With that, we all lost it!

Again, I take my hat off to nurses and all they do. I've never had a bad stay thanks to them. Now, doctors...

OK. They were great, too.. Except for the one night I opened my eyes in my bed to see a dark shadow of a man's figure standing over me like Count Dracula. He'd come around midnight to explain the answer to a question I'd had much earlier in the evening.

"Um...Thank you? The nurse explained it earlier to me. We're good. Good-night."

And with that he silently left the room. When we met again with his superior, I skipped the introductions, saying, yes. we'd met in the middle of the night. I thought I dreamt it. We all thought and said, like Batman was standing watch over me. Creep-eeeeeey.

I couldn't wait to get out of there! Not because of that but because of the desire to be home. Being in your own home is really taken for granted. I wanted to get out and give the bed to someone who needed it more than I did by then. I wanted to get home to my husband who was making two trips a day to see me. I wanted to get home to have control over my life and activities again. I wanted to get home...hold on to your get back into my routine! Yes! I've developed a routine, of sorts. Well, for me. And for the first time in my life. If you've read other blogs here, you know what I mean.

However, returning home from a hospital stay with a husband who is, lovingly attentive, a good nurse, and a good WARDEN, I find myself with cabin fever. No outdoor activity yet. No driving. No attending meetings as a Guardian ad litem. Not much of anything. Sigh. That I'm not used to, at all!

Two weeks of this was enough, even with visitors. Today, I went to Church. Alleluia! People! Real People not on Netflix or YouTube! I tried to contain my excitement and not appear like an escapee to others. It was good to see familiar faces. When I saw one, in particular, my heart melted like chocolate in the bottom of my purse.

It was a little girl, about 11, I'd met before with her grandmother months ago. We'd had a conversation about recent losses of family members, including the little girl's father. She was looking at CDs and books to purchase as the retreat ended to help her in her grief.  Today, they approached me since I sat in the 'special' section without my walker. She was about to sing a song to one of the teachers and wanted to sing for me, too. The song was "I'll Always Be Here" and she's practicing to sing it for her grandmother's great-aunt's funeral. She sang along to a YouTube video on a phone there in the sanctuary.

Her voice was that of a child, beautiful and innocent, but maturely aware of her own losses in life. I cried. OF COURSE I CRIED. It's what I do. However, I smiled as I did, she saw as she looked up occasionally but didn't lose her place. Finished, she ran around to me, still seated, and we hugged. I had to tell her what a little angel she was and to hold on to her Faith, her beautiful heart and talent. Before she left, she ran back to me and hugged me tightly. I held her hands and told her that she is going to be a Saint. I told her the road is hard but she can make it. She smiled, knowingly, and agreed. I couldn't have had a better first day out!

Apparently, God saw what I'd been doing and knows I'm hard of hearing and stubborn. That's why he tried whispering to me to slow down. He said it louder, allowing things to get a little more difficult and I still didn't get the hint. Finally, He, literally, kicked my leg out from under me. OKAY! I get it, Lord! I'll rest a bit and let you handle what I was too egotistical to give to You, in the first place..

Everyone, listen for that whisper telling you go right or go left, rest or stop, go out or cancel the plans, say what's on your mind or keep your mouth closed. Call it your conscience, intuition, Voice of God, or common sense. Just learn to do what it says. It's usually right. And it'll keep you from having to use a walker.

Reboot Challenge? When you hear it, do it the first time. And don't trust bathroom scales!

Wednesday, March 16, 2016

Trump Wives Matter!

That's a bad one. He won more States. Trump may be the official representative candidate for the Republican Party for the most powerful office in the US. The Presidency.

Seriously, America?

I don't usually get into politics in my blogs but this one pushed my buttons so hard, it would hurt to NOT comment. I'll begin by saying I can't get behind any of the candidates of either party. It doesn't mean I won't vote. That's a civic duty we all have and have no right to complain if we don't.

There will always be differences of opinion amongst humans. There will always be conflicts. I'm not looking forward to how badly situations will get in this country now that the Reality Show, bankrupt businessman with a racist, misogynistic, cruel view of the world makes his way to the final lap of running for President of the United States.

He said he LOVES the poorly educated.....and they CHEERED!

He said he'll build a YUGE wall to keep foreigners out (aka Mexicans) and they cheered and no one asked who will pay for The Great Wall of America. Who will do the 'distasteful' jobs they do? As someone pointed out, if there were no immigrants, Trump would never have been married. Ooh. That came out wrong. Oh, well.

He said his daughter has a great body and if she wasn't his daughter, he'd date her. Uh. Ew.

Has our World become so lacking in awareness of right and wrong, we don't see through him?

He has made a mockery of the US and our democracy and it's starting to piss me off!

We may not have been perfect, ever, but, in my opinion from reading our History, we've never been faced with the mere possibility of having such a person in the highest office in the land making decisions. Our President should represent our country with a modicum of class, at least.

Trump has shown his behind several times to his supporters and the World has been watching him lead them to destruction. There is no way you can attack, dismiss others, yell hateful comments, and follow someone who is so consistently boastful, rude, vain, unqualified, and prone to lying, and still be able to sleep at night. Surely, a conscience will bring this matter up at some point to your brain and you'll wake saying, "What did I just do, Lord?".

Sure. We didn't have a great choice of nominees on either side. As my husband says, you just pick your favorite crook. But, People, come ON! Is it that you think he'll give you more money in your pocket? Share his? Not gonna happen. Do you think he's gonna keep those awful Muslims (ALL of them) out of the country to keep you safe? Not gonna happen. PLUS keep in mind he's saying ALL, not terrorists. We have terrorists right here that are US-born, native unstables we need to identify and to help. Those poor souls have shot up schools, businesses, government offices and for some reason, we still haven't called them what they are....terrorists. Are we ashamed and only want to point out one group as a problem?

There are troubled Souls all over the planet willing to take others with them for however they believe they've been wronged or for what they believe. Waco, Guyana, and Oklahoma are coming to mind right now. Those were not Muslims.

Trump is a fear-monger and carrying along those who are buying his Carnival act. He might as well be trying to get you to shoot down the spinning ducks with a crooked rifle for money, or in this case, your brain and your votes. Ask any of his followers why they support him. You will receive the same rhetoric he spews on any stage...or a struggle for an answer. "He'll make America great again!" Really? Think about it. Please think about it. Is America truly only for a few or as our Constitution states for all men, created equally. Testing knowledge of Constitution, Constitutional Laws and U.S. History, Foreign Policy and U.S. Economy, most can't even nail down when the country WAS great last. During the 1800's? 1900's? Now? When, in your opinion? Before the English arrived and Native Americans had no wall to stop them? Yeah. I went there.

(Whispering now) Has anyone considered he knows he won't win but will walk away with a pile of money and options for books, speeches and more riches? That is the businessman side of this fable. Maybe that is his actual goal. You still won't get any of the money. (You can't see but I'm shaking my head.)

Anyone who supports, increases, and pushes hatred in an ignorant, fearful, needy population, who even his own party recognizes as unqualified, lacking self-control, and is undesired, I have a little advice. Ya kinda wanna stay away from that brand of evil. I've seen the videos and photos of those at his rallies and the darkness in their eyes and distorted facial features. Its frightening. Anyone who's buying his schtick, I pray for as my Brothers and Sisters. Jesus is all about Love and wants peace for us. This man appears to have no idea what either of those words means.

Sigh. Abraham Lincoln said, and he was a Republican when it wasn't bad to be one:

"You can fool all of the people some of the time,
and some of the people all of the time,
but you cannot fool all of the people all of the time."

I think Mr. Trump is testing that theory. Hm?

Saturday, February 27, 2016

The Good, the Ugly, and the Why Did I Buy This?

Our previous discussion, I believe was about starting or 'trying' to adapt a minimalist lifestyle. I want to laugh and cry at the same time. But I've got it going, People!

Procrastinated as long as I could while I didn't have writer's block, took every call, ran every errand, and cooked every meal. I did my best until I just couldn't ignore the closet one more day. It called my name in the middle of the night....three weeks ago. Not my fault! Somewhere in there was a trip to Quebec and a bout with bronchitis. Who wants to clean a closet like that?

I am not too proud to say there were items in that closet from the early 1990's. On the other hand, I found my favorite lipstick in a pocket that I thought I'd lost! Gotta look on the bright side!

This was a mind-freak I wasn't completely prepared for. If anyone else is tempted to do this, you must know you are going to have some 'feelings'. Feelings about inanimate objects is something I thought I was beyond. Well. There ya go. In separating items into sell, donate, and keep as most de-cluttering TV shows tell you to do, you've got to be ruthless. I don't have a ruthless bone in my body! What is more important, in the technique I've learned is to keep only  the objects you love. Keep the objects that fit. Keep the objects that make you happy. Keep those things. There's a logic in that and it appealed to my sense of practicality...until I started. Then I became one of those people on the other shows with the 'problem' where everything is loved and a professional must be called in.

That lasted the first hour as I pulled every item of clothing from the dressers, from the closets, from the den, and anyplace else I'd marked my territory. When you see the amount of clothes you actually own laid out on your bed....No, covering your bed, completely! You realize something. You've got to get this done and soon or you'll have nowhere to sleep! So, I stepped up my game. Had to. I became the Terminator after that. I was back. You! Black t-shirt! Come with me if you want to live! You, too, other black t-shirt, and you 5th black t-shirt! There's a place for you all with the half-dozen white t-shirts. Can't you all just get along? Why do I have so many flippin' t-shirts?

There were items from Forever21 on up to Liz Claiborne hiding in one closet that I'd forgotten about. There were items with PRICE TAGS on them!  Clothes worn once or never worn. Bottom line is that it became easier and easier as time went on to make the pile grow with only what I really wanted and to make the piles grow larger with items to sell and donate. Tis the Season. Lent is the time to give alms, charitable works, so perfect timing. I didn't even plan that!

One of many stacks I created. Ugh!

No, I didn't finish. But I have a bed to sleep on. It's surrounded by clothes on hangers, but it's reachable. I still have the shoes, boots, purses, belts, and scarves to sort. It was a beautiful (is that too much?) feeling to see my drawers with neatly folded items, sorted, and ready to use. Ok. Maybe that was a bit much. I have got to get a life!

Mostly, I'm beginning to see that people, including myself, have learned to live with way too much and still believe we don't have enough. This is why we need to look around the rest of the World and see what others are forced to live with, or rather, without. There are those in our own backyards that don't have a change of clothing. Coincidentally, I met a kid outside of a fast food place (not for myself, believe me!) who asked for money for food. Again, remember I said my mother tells me I talk to others too much? I bought him a meal and gave him $5. We sat and talked. James was in high school. He said he just wanted something to eat before he went home on the bus.

"Did you go to school today?"
"No, Ma'am." He dropped his head.
"Why not?"
"Because I wore this to school yesterday."

It turned out although what he wore was clean and he was properly groomed, thanks to his grandmother, he was teased by others in his school for not having lots of clothes! He was also bullied for being overweight. I contained my rage at how awful people can be to others. We chatted about his goals for the future. I assured him that the things that bother him now, he may not remember later. I told him those same kids won't be paying his bills or signing his paycheck in the future, and their 'opinions' didn't matter. As with any kid, he knows the present only. I tried another tactic.

"James. I want you do try something. Take this five dollars and put it away. Save it. From now on, whatever money you get, save it. Don't buy candy or fast food or it. Then, when you have what you need, you can buy yourself a new shirt or pants, even if it's from the thrift store. Then you start over again saving.. Can you do that?"

He looked at me as if that had never occurred to him before and agreed to do just that. That little seed planted in his head will keep him out of debt in the future, too. That's the upside.

Let's just say it was the kick in the backside I needed to begin my journey to Minimal-Land by donating a massive pile of usable clothes to St. Vincent DePaul. .

What progress did you make on the challenge from the last post? Anyone? Anyone? Ferris?

Reboot Challenge? Get the closet done. St. Vincent DePaul, Salvation Army, Goodwill, Churches, and more are all waiting and need your goodies for the needy!

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Cleaning House In 2016!

I could make this all about house-cleaning given the title. Gotcha!

The last thing anyone wants to hear about is cleaning a house!

HOWEVER....I have stumbled, perhaps a little late in the game, upon the concept of Minimalism.

That word has scared me for years. It conjured up the old childhood feelings of Mom throwing things away that I wanted while housecleaning, of the 1970's white rooms with a chair and a table and no stuff, and of a bare and soul-less existence. I have to get rid of all of my BOOKS? My mementos? My works of art? All of my clothes that are out of style or don't fit well? All the papers and notes to myself? Every gift anyone has given me, EVER????

Calm down, Honey. Bring it down.

The idea is not to get 'rid' of things but to keep the things you treasure the most. If you think of it in that way, it's not as traumatic. If you are a hoarder, of course, everything is a treasure and everything stays. In that case, you get professional help. I'm not joking.

I've decided to tackle my closet, first. There is NO way, my daughter is going to use my wedding dress. It goes. I have bridesmaids dresses I've worn that are going, also.

They say you only wear about 20% of what is in your wardrobe. That would be a smaller number for me, personally. I'm actually excited about ridding myself of anything there that does not give me a pleasurable feeling. I know there are tons of things there like that. That is the reason I can stand there looking at it all saying, "I don't have anything to wear!".

It's clothes. They aren't human beings. They aren't children. They are replaceable. Things don't matter. People do.

Once that connection to them is broken, as is that addiction to shopping for more  items is broken, it makes for a happier existence. The shopping part has never and will never be a problem for me as I've stated before, I lack that shopping gene. Dressing daily will be a breeze as you will have only what you love and looks good on you to wear. You can practically reach in with your eyes shut and find exactly what you need! Well. That's what the idea is. Then, if you buy something new, it should be to replace something no longer wearable (worn out, ripped, unrepairable) or a piece that will fit in with what you have in your wardrobe. The best of it, to me, is that everything you have is functional, wearable, fits, and you love it!

It's suggested that you go through your laundry bin or basket and start there. The items there are the ones you wear, obviously, or they wouldn't be there.  Le duh!

So, that's where I'm starting. Not today. I've already done my laundry for the week.

Therein lies the rub. I'm a procrastinator. I put off today what I can do tomorrow, or the next day, or next week. I'm only partially kidding.

I realize what will happen when I start. Life happens.

I want to start and I want to finish. I'm the type of person that if I begin any project, i.e. a portrait, painting, sewing, and writing, I will stay awake and finish it, however long it takes. I was that kind of a worker, once. If it came across my desk, I wanted to handle it once, be done with it, and never see it again. I would tell co-workers, "Here ya go. Don't ask any questions about it."

I have a head-start because of that attitude. That's what is recommended. Take EVERYTHING out and deal with it and be done with it. That's my philosophy so we are of the same mindset, at least. Therefore, when life gives me a day to deal with the closet and drawers throughout the house, meaning ALL of my clothing, I will.

The books will be last. I'll keep you up-to-date.

Reboot Challenge? Join me in cleaning out 2016 of the things we don't absolutely treasure or need in our lives!

Monday, January 4, 2016

Bring Pastor Lim Home

Because it's the right thing to do.

There is a petition with for every ill happening in the World, it seems. This one sent to my e-mailbox is one I want to share and comment on but won't be the last, I'm sure.

According to the website, and here is the link,, this man has made over 100 trips to North Korea to orphanages, nursing homes, basically doing what we are all supposed to be doing in caring for our brothers and sisters. Last January 2015, he was arrested and only last month received a life sentence to be served out in a labor camp. Where was his country in this?

This man is in his 60's and is a Korean-Canadian. He admitted his guilt. He absolutely did commit what they call crimes. And I'd do the same in his place. There have been many martyrs for the Faith in History that never had a petition to free them. Here's a chance now that a way exists. I'm with him! If you will find me guilty of being a Christian, so be it! It is admirable to me what he has done. I hope I'd have the Faith and strength of purpose to do the same thing. This man is ready to die for what he did. Who else would do that?

Do we feel that way about anything these days? Do we rise up only in ways and for causes that are convenient? Do we only feel anger against injustice in our own lands and not, generally, for everyone who suffers on our planet? Are we so distanced from what's outside our front-door that all we can do is complain on Facebook and blast the "other side" with memes, misinformation and the blame-game?

But there's an election coming up and the Super Bowl.

We have some easily led 'odd' people who are convinced they are patriots in Oregon right now that are doing something. Unfortunately, what they are doing is, well, crazy. The people they are there for, the Hammonds and others in that area, have even distanced themselves from the 2 dozen gun-toting guys out there. The Tea Party has even been suspiciously quiet.

These men are lighting a fire under others to join them and it, we can all make the prediction, will end badly. There's no doubt in my mind. It won't be because the government is being held hostage! It's not that the government has responded with force, yet. If that was the case, it would have been done in the past 3 days instead of 'monitoring the situation', to date. It's because the crazies in the Wild Bunch out there will start a massacre before they give up. I say they'd better take names and pics of those out there before they scatter or die over Federal land that belongs to the people of the United States and technically, to NATIVE AMERICANS.

My opinion? They should have started a petition. (Insert sarcasm here.)

Meanwhile, others are seeing the differences in black and white and Muslim and Christian and constantly seeking the differences instead of similarities. The pot is boiling.

Our President just announced his War on Guns. Good luck with that. The previous President had a War on Terror. You can't fight an abstract. I'm not smart enough to have all the answers but I think the heat has just been turned up some more on that pot I just mentioned.

For every evil deed that occurs, someone somewhere with a loose screw, death wish, or misplaced sense of duty, feels they have permission to do their worst to the nearest victim. That, Dear Friends, is what I fear. And I don't fear much, normally.

Yeah, sure, I've been interested, lately, in Korean Culture but this was purely coincidence. A bad one.

You can't fight every battle, especially not with arms, but you can choose one that matters to you and go for it. Fight it with justice, with love, with righteous anger, and with Peace.

When did we stop using our words?

It's just a petition, you say? Guess what? Petitions actually work! They have in the past and they do now. North Korea has released people who've broken their laws in the past. Mr. Trudeau just needs to get serious about this!

And, we have to get serious about what matters to us. It should be everybody.

Reboot Challenge? Sign the petition. Then, find a Cause to devote your life to, like World Peace. Social Networking is a 'tool'. Use it well.

*****Update: Video Released*****