Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Wordless Wednesday- Wellfield Botanical Gardens

     Today is the last day of July and the last day of the Ultimate Blog Challenge, and guess what?  With this post I made it.  I managed to post every single day…exactly 31 posts!!

      Yesterday my kids and I visited a real jewel here in my hometown: Wellfield Botanical Gardens.  While the kids busied themselves finding everything on a scavenger hunt tailor made for them, I zoomed in my camera lens to capture some of the beauty around me.  To mark the end of the Ultimate Blogging Challenge, another month of NaBloPoMo, and Wordless Wednesday, I would like to share some of my favorite pictures with you!

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Tuesday Tunes: Running Out of Moonlight!

      With the first day of school closing in fast I have been running around trying to get things around for it.  I am up to my ears in school supplies and school clothes!!    Today the kids and I went school clothes shopping and took a walk through the Wellfield Botanical Gardens, capping off the day with a trip to Subway for our favorite sub sandwiches.

      It was a busy day and while travelling here to there I kept here Randy Houser singing “Running out of Moonlight” and found myself singing along. This song sums up my day this Tuesday so it is the perfect song for Tuesday Tunes because with all that chasing around, and more blogs needing to be written, comments to be answered and returned, and the days of the Ultimate Blog Challenge running out fast, I feel like I am running out of moonlight!!  Happy Tuesday everyone!

Monday, July 29, 2013

Living in the Now

    NaBloPoMo asks whether I connect more with the past, the present, or the future.  The answer to that question really wasn’t that hard for me to muddle through.

     When I was growing up I looked toward the future with bright eyes and high hopes.  I believed that dreams could come true for me and that anything was possible.  I was optimistic and had high hopes.  I had both of my parents and they were my biggest cheerleaders and support system.  I will admit they were my best friends, and I clung to them and enjoyed their company.

      Then they both died, one by one, and I was left in a tailspin completely devastated.  Right after each of their deaths I desperately clung to the past afraid to move on for fear I would lose them entirely.  I didn’t want to get rid of their things.  I didn’t want to put away their pictures.  I couldn’t stay away from the cemetery.  I was pathetic.  My mother’s death rocked me to my core.  By the time my dad died I was aware that the day would come when he wouldn’t be here.  I wasn’t in denial.  I knew it was a possibility and when he died I let him go.

      Now that I have been through their deaths, a divorce, and the loss of a much anticipated baby, I tend to lock the past in a special place and live in the now rarely taking it out to dust it off and contemplate.  I don’t look toward the future.  I don’t dream.  I take life as it comes, be happy with the blessings I have, and live one day at a time letting God have control of my life.  It is just easier that way.  I have finally figured out how to be happy in my own skin and quit mourning things I can do nothing about.   I choose to connect with the present because the past is gone and the future has yet to be written.  It is my way to move on and keep on living the best I can.

Sunday, July 28, 2013

The Kitchen Table

This was written for the Writer's Post Blog Hop hosted by Tayla Tate Boerner of "Grace Grits and Gardening".

     The kitchen table was sitting on the front lawn waiting to be auctioned off.  As I watched prospective bidders mill around my parent’s things memories came rushing back.  Every season warranted a new tablecloth.  If it was Christmas, the tablecloth featured holly berries or a Currier and Ives scene.  If it was Halloween, there would be pumpkins.  If it was Easter, there would be Easter eggs or bunnies.  It is funny the things a person remembers.

      So many memories from coloring Easter eggs to turkey dinners punctuated with the laughter of my family.  There were nights gathered around the table playing Monopoly and seeing my Dad enjoying his ice cream before bedtime.  On holidays the leaves would go in and the table would magically grow to hold all the marvelous food my parents prepared.

      Now the table is empty devoid of a table cloth.  My parents are gone and the family that once was will never gather around it again.  I still have my memories, but it is time for the table to find a new home.  Life is about changing and nothing ever stays the same.   With a lump in my throat I take one last look and walk away.

Saturday, July 27, 2013


     The powers that be at NaBloPoMo wonder “Can you easily connect with your feelings and understand where they come from?”  Well yes, without a doubt.  I think I am pretty in tune with my feelings.  I can get in touch with my sensitive side if need be.  If I am pissed, I know it.  Usually most everyone around me knows it too.  There is usually no mystery there.  If I am sad or depressed, that is pretty obvious too.  Pretty much what you see is what you get.

      I am not one of those folks that need to pay someone to sort the feelings out for me.  If I am jealous, I know it.  If I am amused, I know that too.  Do I understand where those feelings come from?  Well sure, I usually have my reasons for all those feelings.  Do I understand why I tend to prefer my own company instead of rolling along with a group?  No, I don’t but after 45 years in this skin, I have accepted that it is just one of my many quirks.

     Whenever I feel bat shit crazy I chalk that up to those pre-menopausal hormones that according to my doctor are already starting to rage. While I don’t want to think I am old enough to have to cope with such things, my all-knowing doctor assures me I am. That is right up there with the well-meaning advice that I need to lose some weight and exercise more.  I wouldn’t think it would take a rocket science mentality to figure it out as long as you are pretty in tune with yourself.  Unfortunately I have found that wisdom comes with time and experience so you tend to have more of a clue the older you get.

Friday, July 26, 2013

Nut Checker

      This weekend my husband was in need of a nut so he sent my daughter and I off to Lowes to find some.  I had the old nut in hand and marched myself purposefully into the store heading straight for where they store such things.  Somehow some things that are perfectly normal can sound so wrong when you are trying to explain it to someone else.  That is when the giggles take over…especially if you explain yourself with a straight face in the first place.

      Who would have thought I would have reached my hand into the first box of nuts and found exactly the size I needed?  Seriously, I did though!!  It surely looked like the old nut, a perfect match by my eye.  About that time one of those ever helpful Lowe’s employees sauntered over and asked if I needed any assistance.   I promptly explained that my husband needed a new set of nuts and wondered if the one I found looked about right.  He looked at me and burst out laughing and then I realized exactly what I said.  Amid uproarious giggles that became quite contagious he asked me if I had checked it out with the nut checker.  Excuse me? Lowe’s has a nut checker, a physical place you can go to check your nuts?  Laughing all the way he led me to a wall covered with screws and took the nut I brought with me and picked a protruding bolt and proceeded to screw it on.  Then he screwed on one of the new nuts.  While I stood in open mouthed amazement he congratulated me on finding an exact match.

       I guess you never know where you will find a giggle lurking and I happened to find one at the nut checker wall at Lowe’s.  I left the store feeling as if I had made a life defining discovery and fulfilled with the wonder of obtaining knowledge I didn’t previously have.  Another post in the record books for NaBloPoMo and the Ultimate Blogging Challenge!  

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Pit Toilets

    Over the weekend we went camping, which is part of the reason I haven’t been posting.  No worries because I intend to catch up so I can finish the Ultimate Blogging Challenge in epic style with my 31 posts!   I love camping and it was the first time all summer we have went to an actual campground.  Sure there have been plenty of nights out in the camper outside our back door, but we never actually went anywhere.

     We packed our gear and headed to the Eby Pines Campground in Bristol, Indiana.  They have a ginormous swimming pool that has a water slide my son loves and a huge water umbrella you can swim under.  I digress though.  Nearby our campsite was the traditional pit toilet.  This year the campground had erected a fancy new building over the pit toilet site complete with electric lights.    Thinking this might not be so bad, my kids and I made a beeline for the pit toilet with an urgent need to pee.  I was impressed until I walked into the door.  Sure it was clean enough, but as soon as you opened the door, and in some cases before that, you were bowled over by an eye watering, gag reflex stench that literally took your breath away!!  A person literally had to hold your breath to pee then vault for the door as if shot off the shitter by a canon.  The smell was that bad.  What could I possibly expect from a pit toilet?

    As my son marveled how far down his pee had to drop, I wondered how much more money it would have taken to have an electric fan installed along with that nice building and  those electric lights.  Can we get some ventilation please?  Perhaps an industrial sized can of Febreeze?  What is the point of building such a fine structure and installing electric lights and a hand sanitizer dispenser if you fail to provide some form of ventilation?  From that moment on we walked a little farther to the shower house to do our business skirting a wide path around the reeking pit toilet.

      I love to camp but I have got to have a clean toilet devoid of God awful shit and urine smell.  It is a must.  Even if a person squatted behind a tree to take a leak you would have better air quality than that.  Since I am traipsing into those menopausal years I always have to pee in the middle of the night so my daughter always makes the trek to the bathroom with me when we are at the campground.  Even if she doesn’t have to go, by the time we get there, she probably will.  

       The moon and stars were bright in the sky and we were singing “I’m walking in the moonlight” and laughing our fool heads off all the way.  Not another soul seemed to be stirring except for us.  As we neared the pit toilet we noticed this creepy woman that appeared quite not all there staring at the pit toilet but making no moves to enter or retreat. Maybe she was waiting for someone, maybe she was wondering whether she should stay, or whether she should go,  whatever the case, we walked a little quicker and sang a little quieter with a bounce in our step and a song in our hearts.


Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Wordless Wednesday- Winning 4H Projects

    While I have shared pictures of my kids awards from this year's 4H fair, I have yet to share pictures of the projects that won such distinction.  My daughter won first place in drawing, her wildlife poster (which is the black Habitat poster on the bottom row), baking a sweet braided pretzel, for a crocheted afghan, and for her frozen broccoli and cauliflower blend.   This year was my son's first year in Exploring 4H and won his ribbon for his non-bake cookies.  It was a great year at the fair for my family and I am so proud of my kids!

 photo Wordless-Wednesday-Button-1501_zpsa48285ed.png  photo wordless2.gif  photo UBC-bannerbox200_zpsb933c6dd.png  photo CONNECTsmall_zps8a103006.jpg