June 30, 2010

Anything Good On The Telly?

My blogger friend, Owen, has a super wonderful mostly photo blog called Magic Lantern Show. He has given me permission to use this photo, but believe me you want to see some of the awesome photos he has taken in and around the fascinating city where he lives.
Thanks, Owen, for letting me use one of your photos. Be sure to tell Owen I sent you!

The first thing I thought when I saw this black and white photo of the older style television in such disrepair was that it looked similar to the television I had in my early twenties. I have caught a lot of bugs in my day, but thank goodness the television bug is not one of them. When I was young and still in school I was busy. Maybe not the happiest kid on the block, but I had an interest in things and an inquisitive nature that kept my brain going full steam even when I was asleep. I kept a pencil and notebook near my bed so when I woke with a brilliant idea, I wrote it down and went back to sleep. When I wasn't writing screenplays or poems, I was listening to music and reading. I worked with the flowers and plants. I built things. They might not have been smooth and perfect but I made things. With wood. With material. I painted anything I could find. With leftover paint or I would use tea bags and dye something.

By the time I met Hubby I had pretty much turned off my large screen plasma TV and was so tired of not getting any good honest news reporting or weekly shows. There didn't seem to be much I was interested in watching, so it was easy to not turn it on at all.
The funny thing was that when Hubby and I met that was one subject we had in common immediately. So six months after we met we moved in together and I sold my TV and surround sound and never looked back.

I am not interested in hashing over and over the negative things about television. What I am most interested in is the positive benefits of not ever watching television. The first thing that comes to mind is the sound in our home. It is peaceful. It is quiet. A benefit of not having even a background "noise" all the time. We hear birds chirping. We hear the rain pounding on the roof. Natural sounds. We hear each other when we speak. We REALLY hear each other. Do you get what I am saying? We don't have our faces sort of on each other and our eyes drawn to the television, obviously not completely present and listening. We are present and caring and respectful. We each feel important to each other.

We have time to be together when we want to. Lots of time. Just think of how many hours we have to play games and talk and read and play darts and go for walks that would have been spent sitting in front of a box with noise and pictures. Ugh. I can't tell you the number of times we have said how much happiness it has brought us as a couple to not have the distraction of television. We don't fight over who gets the remote. Or what show to watch. We can have our spats and get over them quickly and get on with our lives. So the amount of time we have put to good use is such a blessing and we are thankful every day for making the right decision for us.

So when I saw Owen's photo I felt compelled to share some of the benefits of not watching television. I know we are in the minority and some people even think it is so weird to choose to not have television. I am happy and healthy and communicating with my husband so if that is weird, then Hooray, I enjoy being weird.

June 28, 2010

Embarrassing Moment

I have admitted recently that I have a thing about potty talk. Well, things to do with the act really. Or the room it is usually done in.

LYNN at For Love Or Funny is sponsoring an interesting contest. Post an embarrassing moment on your blog, link to her blog. She even has prizes. Well, that did it, I can remember so many embarrassing moments in my life.

There were three of us in the car; my then husband, my three year old grandson, and me.
We were driving up to my other daughter's house and taking the grandson so he could play with his cousins for the weekend. This meant a ride from San Diego to north of Los Angeles which usually took three and a half hours. This particular time though, traffic was crawling. My bladder can only remain calm in three hour increments.

We were somewhere in Los Angeles on a freeway that we didn't usually drive on, so we did not know our way around in that area. It became increasingly more uncomfortable for me so that I needed to exit the freeway which in itself took another half hour. The first place with an entry was where we went. I grabbed tissues and jumped out of the car, careful to step behind my open door so grandson was not peering at me. I was so happy to feel the bladder relief that I sighed and smiled. Just then grandson yelled out his window "Grandma, look at all those people in the window". I turned around and was horrified to see a whole group of people standing at a huge window watching me. They even smiled and waved. The nerve of them! Of course, grandson could not wait to tell the entire family about this incident.

June 26, 2010

For The Birds

My Hubby is great!

Hubby drilled four holes in a small tray that is meant to be a bacon cooking tray for the microwave. He attached four long pieces of weed eater string to the corners and hung the tray from the roof. Instant bird feeder!

We put bird seed on the tray. Hubby set up the camera on the kitchen table, set the video and this video is the result.

Thanks, darling Hubby, for bringing joy and fun into my life every day.

Music credit goes to Atherium. Soothing sounds.

June 24, 2010

Play On

Did you see that?
A deer took food from my hand
Neither one of us was shy
nature love photo frame Images
Did you hear that?
The birds are chirping
We wake to their singing

Did you smell that?
The lawnmower was working
And now the grass is growing

Did you taste that?
The firm juicy goodness
An apple grown in the yard

Did you feel that?
Your heart beating
You are in tune

Ready to play your masterpiece. Participate in your life. Fully. Completely. Joyfully.

Photo courtesy of

June 22, 2010

Twilight Apartments

As I looked down into the greasy emerald sheen of the pool, I realized that my keys were at least that far away. I'd dropped them down the elevator shaft trying to move out of the Twilight Apartments. I'd run back to my pad to get some kind of instant tool to reach my keys three floors below.

Darnell didn't tell me the hot water would stop and never start again. Nor did he mention any other pool color but green. Darnell was the official apartment manager. His unofficial office was the phone booth just outside the entrance door. No one knew his last name, so he was always just Darnell. Twilight Apartments didn't have leases or rental agreements so residents didn't sign any papers prior to moving in. I had no idea that I'd be the only white blues guitar player in residence, but that fact made my life a lot better. Darnell loved blues guitar. I'd heard of another white resident, but she apparently burned herself up along with most of her apartment... developing pictures. Right.

One morning he tapped on my door, and I opened it to a seriously hurting Darnell. He hadn't been ass-kicked or anything, but he'd mixed drugs so strongly his morning squint had collapsed his whole face nose first. He tried in vain to look cool, and said, "My man, got anything for a my-brain headache?" I bit my lip hard to keep from smiling, and got him some Tylenol.

This epic morning I took another frigid but lightning-quick shower, grabbed a few boxes, and headed for the elevator. Just after I put the boxes down inside, my keys slipped out of my hand and slithered to the edge, and then into the space between the car and the shaft.

As I came back down the walkway to the elevator, I recognized the smell of the pool wafting far up into the day, into my nose, and motivating me to get the hell out of the Twilight Apartments. I'd made a lasso out of some string and a coathanger, so I dropped it down that two-inch-wide slot down to the basement. I'd never been to the basement. Didn't want to. Ever.

A few snags later I had my keys, and I kept moving out. By midafternoon, I was gone.

I called Darnell at his phone booth the next day. The power was cut off a few hours after I was out of there. Too bad. Now the pool light couldn't struggle to shine through the green sheen.

Note: This is a fun piece of fiction that is a collaboration between me and James, my hubby. I started writing and got bogged down, maybe the green pool was just too grungy, so James did some editing and finished the story. We hope you enjoy it.

June 19, 2010

He Always Wanted To Be A Father

By the time he entered high school he stood six feet four inches tall. People looked up to him for his quiet, polite manner as well as his height. He always had an easy way with children and they responded to his gentle teasing and encouraging ways. His part time job through high school was working with children at after school programs through the Parks and Recreation Department.

He was twenty five years old when he married his sweetheart of three years. They talked about starting a family as soon as she finished college. Everyone who knew him thought he would be a wonderful father and family man. When his wife graduated college, she told him she was re-thinking starting the family right away and wanted to postpone getting pregnant for a few years. He was disappointed but he loved his wife and believed she wanted children and had the same goals he did. Each year after his thirtieth birthday he approached his wife about starting their family and was rebuffed and sometimes ridiculed about his desire to be a father. He decided to wait and trust that his wife was adjusting to a busy career and she would want to be a mother when she saw her friends having children.

They both were athletic and in good shape. She ran 10 miles every day and 20 miles every weekend morning. He worked out at the gym. He introduced her to a personal trainer at their gym because she wanted some personal workout time to concentrate on results to help with the running. At the time he introduced them, he told his wife as an aside that the personal trainer was good at his job, but he had a reputation for being a swinger and had been known to be involved with some of the clients.

They were about to celebrate their tenth wedding anniversary and they were going to move very far away. They talked about how the change would be good for them and she told him she wanted to start their family in the new place. He went ahead to the new place to find a house to buy and get started in his job.

After two months he traveled back home to see his wife and see how things were going toward the move. All the pictures of him and her together or of him alone were not displayed where they had been. There was no evidence of an impending move. Instead of greeting her husband with a kiss, she told him she did not want to have children. Not ever. She knew this before she met him. She was not going to move with him. She wanted a divorce. She had been having an affair with the personal trainer for a year and he had moved in with her.

There were many stages of grief for him to get through and along the way he begged and then became angry and then begged again. He was thrown into a horrible depression. To his family and friends he said it wasn't just her fault, that he wasn't the best husband he could have been. The last thing he said to his family and friends was that he was willing not to be a father if they could start couples counseling and save their marriage. That was not to be. He moved to the new place so very far away, is working and is 42 years old and still not a father.

Note: This is a true story. We sometimes hear about women who ache to become mothers but seldom do we hear about a man who loves children and wants to be a father. The man in this story is my son. My heart hurts for his disappointment and pain. He still has hope that one day he will have children. Hope springs eternal, my son.

Photo found on google.

June 16, 2010

Tall, Dark, And Still Handsome

black horse stars sparkle Images
In my bedroom
I wake to see you

Your color is beautiful
Pecan or mahogany tone

You are so strong
Maybe a few nicks

You stand tall and proud
I call you my Old Reliable

Since you entered my life
you have moved with me twelve times

You are still with me
I fill your empty spaces

Some people call you a bureau
Others call you chest of drawers

Thank you for giving my belongings
A special place to relax

Next to where I catch my ZZZZZs.

Graphic courtesy of layoutsparks.

June 13, 2010

How To Fail A Test With Dignity

I friend sent this is an email. At least it shows initiative and imagination. I think these were various ages of students taking the tests. These are samples of answers. This was the title of the email, not necessarily one I would use.

June 11, 2010

Paying Sincere Respect To Another Blogger

There is a blog called Professor B Worm. The writer of that blog is Charlie.

Charlie has written a few posts that moved me to tears and that helped me face my own childhood trauma more honestly and easily. I say easily because by reading some things that Charlie wrote from his heart, I would have to remind myself to breathe and that this was someone else writing, not me. So as I would read some of his writing, I could understand his way of working on his personal recovery and it was a good example to me.

Blogs are written for so many reasons. I believe that when someone writes a post that obviously came from the depths of their soul, and some people read that post and gain something from it, then the pain it took to write the post was a good thing. Good for the writer to aid in healing and good for the reader if it is therapeutic.

Not many books or blogs reach my inner being and grab hold. This post did that to me.
My Hubby says that it is because Charlie is such an excellent writer. That is true, he is. Beyond that, if you really read every word, the outcome is restorative. It takes so much strength of character to write deep down honest truth. When someone opens up to others this way they are to be respected. Honesty is seldom important in big business or corporations or politics and sometimes in families. I have to speak up here and say that honesty to me is welcome, necessary, and respected. Please tell me what you think of this post at Professor B Worm.

June 09, 2010

The Back Yard Neighbor, The Guy With The Little Deck

It is not a typo in the title. It is a little deck.

Let me back up a little bit. Hubby and I don't work so we are home most of the time. We are busy with our computers and hubby is working on composing his music but some of the time we like to people watch, not to be confused with being nosey. Well, sorta being nosey I guess.

We have nicknames for the neighbors. The younger couple directly across from us we call Mr and Mrs Sassy, after their dog's name. Sassy is a great dog, big but not intimidating and doesn't growl or charge at us like we're her next meal. Sassy's brother is the pet of the couple next door to the left of us. This couple we rarely see. Maybe they work nights. The times we have talked to him, he shared with us that his fiance lives there with him and they also have a male roommate. They all work and the dog is inside lots of the time. This particular couple we call The Newlyweds even though they aren't technically married yet.

Across from The Newlyweds is The Widower. His wife died a year ago and he is hardly there either. While she was alive, she posted a big sign on their front door telling everyone to stay away. Seriously. If his brother or any of his friends came by to see him, they had to stay outside, they were not allowed to be inside the house. And if they stayed too long or were having too good a time, she would stomp out the front door, slam the door, traipse over to the visitors and shout at them that it was time for them to leave. I always figured she must have had a medical problem. Maybe she was in pain. The other neighbors didn't know of a medical problem but the people who have lived here over thirty years say that she has always been like that.

Next door on the right side are the Old Folks. We get along great with them and they like us too. They are twenty years older than we are but we always have plenty to talk about with them. When they go out of town they ask us to keep an eye on their house and we have their cell number if we would need to contact them. They like to tease hubby about grilling food on the gas barbecue in the garage with snow drifts to get through to get to the garage.

Across from the Old Folks are the Yard Sale Queen and Her Slave (her husband). I'm not one to gossip so that is all I should say about them. I could write a whole post about them but it wouldn't be very nice.

When we sit in our back yard, the yard that connects to us is on the main street. Our house in on a cul-de-sac. The man who lives in the house that connects to our back yard is who we call Lonely Guy. He used to live two cul-de-sacs over with his family and he is now renting the house sorta behind us. We sit in our kitchen and through the bushes that are just growing in now we see him sitting on a lonely chair in his back yard. He works on his yard most of the time that he is there. He brought his kids there one time but haven't seen them since. He was doing such a good job clearing out the stray bushes and limbs that he continued on up the small hill to our part of the property and was eliminating the foliage that separates the two yards. Hubby went out and asked him not to clean it out so well that we wouldn't have privacy in our yard. Lonely Guy hadn't thought of that apparently, so he kept his digging and cutting and chain saw in his own yard after that. Nice guy, just really quiet (well, except for the chain saw). Today we were in our yard and saw Lonely Guy building a new little deck for his house out of wood. There was brand new wood there and he had the frame made and was working in his steady way. Lonely Guy isn't into the critters like we are. Hubby had mentioned to Lonely Guy that this area has been a sanctuary for some of the wild animals and that the large wood pieces and boulders at the far corner of Lonely Guy's yard was a home for four rabbits. Lonely Guy tore down the wood and removed all traces of the boulders and sanctuary for the rabbits so they are looking for a new home. It's like Lonely Guy is OCD about having his yard so tidy that he can't see past that aspect of having a yard. Anyway, we are enjoying watching Lonely Guy with his little deck.

June 07, 2010

Learning More About Each Other Online

One of the ways we learn about each other in Blogland is reading the answers we post when we receive an award. My friend, Sarah, at Cottage Garden Studios, is sharing an award with me. This particular award is appropriate for me right now in my little hippie life right now. Thank you, Sarah, for the share and care, my friend.

This part of the award is a hoot. I answer the questions that Sara proposed.
So hold on to your seats.

1. What food could you not do without? Is coffee a food? No? Oh heck. I suppose bread is my mainstay. Hubby makes our bread with whole wheat flour. Sometimes he puts in sunflower seeds and sometimes raisins. You get the picture. I can make a sandwich or just have toast. Or French Toast. Yum. Or break it up and add veggies for dressing. I can go on and on with the Forest Gump shrimp thingy here and make it about bread.

2. What is your favorite scent? Candles we order online from a candle company in Arizona. My favorite fragrances blend as the candles burn: Patchouli, Orange Slice and Sandalwood in one candle. Even just walking past an unlit candle is a sweet experience.

3. What talent do you have that we don't know about? I cut hair. Some people know that already. Cutting hair is how I paid for gas and upkeep on a car in high school and I continued to cut my own hair and other peoples hair the rest of my life.

4. What actor makes your legs turn to jelly? Johnny Depp.

5. What season makes your heart sing? Fall. Cooling down from hot summer, leaves turning glorious colors, crabby people getting mellow in the cooler weather and beginning to think of Thanksgiving and Christmas.

6. What is your favorite activity with your best buddy? Playing dominoes with hubby. Actually it is the complete experience of us making a meal together and sitting at the table eating and talking and playing dominoes. Laughing, eating, playing, some touching hands and flirting too.

7. Would you rather take a vacation with your critter or your family. Family is always first but if I had a pet it would be considered part of the family.

8. If you were stranded on a beautiful mountain top for a year..what could you not do without? My knife so I could forage food and build shelters. Not a little pocket knife.

9. Tell us one hearts desire? Paint furniture with a signature design that would turn into a money making business.

10. Tell us one thing that just might shock us all!! I am sixty four years old. Shocking, isn't it???

I will pass this along to the following six bloggers:
(as always, if you choose not to accept, it is totally acceptable, you do as you need to do, if this can't be a fun thing for you, shine it on!)

Eddie Bluelights at Clouds and Silver Linings
Mami at Unknown Mami
Gappy at Single Parenthood
lisleman at A Few Clowns Short
Jeanie at Living Consciously
And Sassy Pants Freckle Face

If you got this far, and you choose to accept the award, here are your questions:

1. If you blog anonymously, are you happy doing it that way; if you are not anonymous do you wish you had started out anonymously so you could be anonymous now?

2. Describe one incident that shows your inner stubborn side.

3. What do you see when you really look at yourself in the face in the mirror?

4. What is your favorite summer cold drink?

5. When you take time for yourself, what do you do?

6. Is there something you still want to accomplish in your life? What is it?

7. When you attended school, were you the class clown, the class overachiever, the class shy person, or always ditching school? Describe who you were if not one of these.

8. If you close your eyes and want to visualize a very poignant moment in your life, what do you see?

9. Is it easy for you to share your true self in your blog or are you more comfortable writing posts about other people or events?

10. If you had the choice to sit and read or talk on the phone, which would you do and why?

So there you have it. For those blogs on the receiving end of the award, I hope you enjoy answering the questions. Then make up ten new questions of your own and pass along to six blogs of your choice. Have fun.

June 04, 2010


I put my hands together
And cannot pray

I close my eyes
And cannot meditate

I listen to the wind
To the birds song

I Hear the grass grow
Aah, This Is Prayer

June 02, 2010

Wicked Wicked Sense Of Humor

As requested, I will write the short story about the mouse in the tub.

I was nine years old going on twelve. We had moved many times by that age and each place we lived was rural, never in a city. I grew up around nature. Sitting for hours watching ants work and beginning to understand how strong and industrious they are. I did not destroy animals or their habitats; there was something in me that connected more to the animals and insects than to humans.

For instance, when I was two my mother walked around the building to see me with a branch and I was playing with some black widows. Gently. She tells me that she removed me from the vicinity of my little black play friends and would find me with some more in another place. I played with bugs and crickets and anything that moved. Funny, because when I became an adult I learned to dislike spiders.

Enough of the background. You get the picture. So, when I was nine we lived in a country setting on three and a half acres. My brother and I walked every single inch of that property and found so many things to do there. For me, it was finding pets. Mice were easy for me to catch, I took good care of them and then let them go.

One mouse became a favorite, and I didn't want to let him go. I carried him around in my pocket or sometimes put tissue in the bottom of a bandaid can and he would sit in there. I didn't shut the lid and he didn't run away.

Without going into the relationship I had with my mother, I was not very close to her. I think it would be fair to say that I enjoyed doing things that upset her. Can you imagine having a kid that actually liked to irritate you?

One afternoon I was carrying my little mouse in the bandaid can through the house to my bedroom and I could hear the bath water running. I knew it had to be my mother because my father was not home, again, and my brother was outside. Like Flip Wilson, the devil made me do it! I turned away from the door to my room, marched to the bathroom, threw open the door which in itself startled my mother, and I dumped the mouse into the tub. She screamed and jumped up at the same time. I grabbed my mouse who was swimming around and I took off. I ran and ran. The truth is that I had the picture of my mother standing, nude, screaming, trying to talk, and it was funny. Maybe I was born with a warped sense of humor, but to this day when I bring up that picture, I can laugh. See what a wicked person I am? Now you know the truth.

Note: Mouse photo found on Google.