Rant-a-day

person holding black remote control
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Lately, we have opted for programs without commercials, which means we pay for much of our viewing. 

Yes, we do watch the NEW news, but we are not happy with it or the commercials!  We do not need you to tell us what President Biden said; if you stop talking while he is behind you moving his mouth, we could listen to him and SURPRISE we can understand what he is saying!  The NEWS is exactly that!  Not what your station interprets for us poor, uneducated mortals because we couldn’t possibly understand. 

I did indeed graduate from the school of hard knocks at the top of my class, and I can read and understand what I hear. I would love to hear the news delivered more like on  Dragnet with Jack Webb, “Just the facts.”

Going on to bigger and better things, let’s talk about commercials!  I know you think SEX sells! And I am afraid it does!  But it only goes so far!  It might convince someone to buy creams to make their face look young and beautiful to a certain extent. Still, they really know it will only make their skin softer and smoother in the final analysis. If you want to convince me that a beauty cream will make me look younger, show me a woman my age that uses it and looks years younger, not some nubile 20 years old.

Want to talk about automobiles?  Do we really need a car that drives itself?  Isn’t that our job?  I learned to drive a truck with a stick shift. Driving was a full-time job!  See, with a stick shift, you have to pay attention to driving, not looking in the back or side seat to talk to passengers. Why do you need to drive while eating a four-course meal, singing Karaoke, and talking about baseball, football, or basketball with your passengers?

And why do we need a car that goes from 0 to 60 in 10 seconds?  Are you planning on entering the Indianapolis 500? In case you haven’t noticed, the highest speed limit on most roads is 75.  Hell, at the rate y’all are “losing control and hitting trees and each other, you can’t control cars at ANY speed!

Now, if we had cars, like the flying cars in my Young Adult series (Ruby & Nolan’s Great Adventures in Space), you could do all those things safely.  Their flying cars are solar-powered and controlled by AI!  When arriving home, the cars park themselves.  Now I could get behind that!

The commercial I saw the other day about most municipalities recommend you take your car to a car wash because they reuse the water. It takes less water than you would use at home.  Of course, in the background was a bumbling fool, falling all over himself and his car covered with foam.  When was the last time you fell over your bucket of water while washing your car?  How much is a car wash? $10?  $20?  In Arizona, the dust in the air makes that a weekly affair. 

I am a DIY kind of gal!  There are some things that I can’t do.  Mechanical work on my Car and Motorhome.  Those I leave to the experts.  And my toes!  I have a professional pedicure because I can’t reach my feet easily at my advanced age.  Let me leave you with this sage advice, “gettin’ old ain’t for sissies!”

persons feet on gray textile
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Customer Service

delighted black female barista serving coffee in cup in cafe
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Definition: Live people that serve customers.  Do you remember when you could pick up the phone and call Amazon? Your Doctor’s assistant? Lowes, Home Depot, Walmart, almost all the stores?  Those were the good old days, but they ain’t comin’ back anytime soon!

Have you tried reaching any company by phone lately? Yeah, me too!  There is no good excuse for not being able to speak to real live people.  The corporations got a massive government tax cut, which they used to line their pockets, and did not pay workers one extra dime.   In fact: they “furloughed” many workers and replaced them with “no one.” Go ahead and try to get a product replaced because you did not like it or work as advertised.  I have been successful several times but have sustained substantial hair loss!  On Amazon, in the first 30 days, you can usually have the returned item picked up.  Of course, after you have, it un-assembled and packed up again.  You will get credit for it as soon as it is picked up usually.  Small items you may have to drop off at one of their sites.  BTW, make sure you wrap it in the same size box it came in because it might not fit in the slot designated for it.

I am an author and format and upload my books to Amazon. I used to call Amazon and get referred to customer service at KDP to resolve a problem.  Not anymore!  Now I either figure it out myself, read through millions of help pages or Google, and watch YouTube videos! If you don’t mind waiting for millennia or two, there is a number, and be told first that the answer is in the help pages.  

There is no guarantee that after the Pandemic, life will resume, and corporations will hire many of those people back.  The corporate bottom line is bigger because it is easier to let us flail in the wind, attempting to converse with Artificial Intelligence or bots.  By the way, they don’t care if you yell at them, and you can swear, and they won’t get offended and hang up on you yet!    

The Pandemic caused many “essential” workers to lose their jobs.  Many continued to work because they had to, and many got sick.  It was great that some workers eligible for unemployment got that extra $300 a week added. I am so proud that the GOP voted to take it away from them to “make” them get back to work because they were getting so rich and lazy!  I certainly hope many people remember this at election time.

 Many at-risk people did not leave home unless it was absolutely necessary.  And some people had a hard time navigating the internet system to get an appointment.  Now there are lotteries, and people can win $1million for getting the shot.   Does anyone else think, “Where were the lotteries when I waited in my car for hours?” 

Many were lucky and were allowed to “work from home.”  They noticed a big reduction in gas usage.  Then the Oil companies were crying because they weren’t making enough money.  I felt so bad. 

During the pandemic, we masked up, wore gloves, wiped down everything, and would let no one into our home.  I used to do sewing and repairs for my neighbors, and during the last year, I would not allow even my neighbors to bring items for repair.  Since both my husband and I have had both shots now, I am resuming the sewing work.

The jobs I’ve loved and hated!

In my long young life, I am only 80!  Will turn 81 in a few weeks.  I have fond memories of many positions and of the bosses.

My first job was picking potatoes.  I was only allowed to pick on Saturday and Sunday as Mom wanted one of her kids to graduate from High School; she picked me.  The reason always escaped me, because she believed that education for women was a waste. After all, they would just get married and have babies.  That was okay with me; I would have fought to attend school.  I loved reading and learning.  My two brothers were way too smart to go to school.  

The Potato field was huge, and the sections were measured casually off by units that would fill a barrel if picked properly.  The barrels were set after the potatoes were plowed to the surface.  Each picker had a heavy-duty bushel basket with a sturdy handle.  The pay was peanuts: $.20 a barrel, which holds about 3 bushels.  A “section” was about long enough to fill the one-bushel basket with potatoes.  By the way, the fastest way to pick was to bend at the waist and pick them one by one using both hands, tossing them in the basket.  To say it was back-breaking work is an understatement.

In my hey-day, I could pick about 20 or 30 barrels a day.  My Mother put me to shame by picking 100 barrels a day.  She was an amazing woman!  

One of the pickers had obviously had drunk his lunch and wasn’t too bright because he put his arm around my Mother to get a little kiss.  That was his second mistake! She brought her fist up from her waist and smacked him on the jaw; laid him out, cold!  No one ever bothered her again. 

We didn’t know we were poor.  There was no time to bake bread in the middle of picking season, and we often ate canned Franco-American Spaghetti cold from the can for lunch.

We also picked beans, and it was harder than potatoes; no more money, and it takes a lot more beans to fill a bushel basket than potatoes.  I couldn’t pick any more beans than potatoes.

My first real paying job was waitressing in a small diner!  I was green and naive, and the owner had a cracked sense of humor but was a really nice guy. He told me that the Crullers (long round donuts) were called “Male Donuts.”  I called them that until someone took pity on me and explained it to me.  I got many tips because even though I was not a great waitress, I could laugh at myself along with them.

Another fun job was selling shoes at a new Shoe Store in town.  My boss told me all about this new shoe that was called “a pound a pair.”  I was fascinated with them and soaked up all the best-selling points.  One day a guy walked in, and I started telling him about them.  I had a pair on his feet before he introduced himself as the owner of the store.  My boss was laughing so hard she nearly wet her pants.  He was impressed, though; unfortunately, I didn’t get a raise.

I once worked as a waitress at Howard Johnson’s in South Carolina.  We were supposed to carry everything on a tray, even if it was a pat of butter!  Illogical!  One day everyone was all in a  twitter because the big guy himself was coming in for lunch.  Nobody wanted the honors of waiting on him.  I volunteered, and everyone said empathically NO!  I was told to hide in the storeroom and not to come out under any circumstances!  That job didn’t last long as I was responsible for more broken dishes than the money I earned.  Oh well!  I wasn’t thrilled with the job or the uniforms!

Now the uniform of the next job was right up my alley!  A t-shirt and a pair of little red shorts (I was a lot smaller then) and a pair of roller skates!  I was a Car Hop at a drive-in.  Girls my age (18) weren’t supposed to serve alcohol, so when beer was ordered, it was served in milk-shake containers.  I got tons of tips!   A couple of “good old boys” that just happened to be Cops offered to take me out on their boat for an ocean cruise.  I was naïve, but not stupid!  Out on a boat on the ocean, miles from land with a couple guys, and no way to walk home?  I let them tip me real big, but no cruises.

I dated one guy for a couple of weeks. He seemed really nice until two Men in Black Suits with guns under their jackets and nice gold badges asked me many questions about the guy.  I spilled my guts!  And the next week, I packed up and left town.  My Mother didn’t raise no fools!  Well, I did have two brothers.

I moved to Hartford, Conn, and went to work at Hartford Fire Insurance as a Keypunch Operator.  What a fun job, setting all day punching holes in cards that the guys across the file cabinets destroyed.  These huge sorting machines were the beginning of computers.  When I was assigned to re-punch the mangled cards that often happened, my boss told me, “A change is as good as a rest,” as she pushed another box of mangled cards on my desk.  This great piece of advice was from a woman that drank her lunch every day. 

We were all up for a raise and were admonished not to say a word to the “big boss” when we were interviewed.  Evidently, my mouth is bigger than my brain because I spoke up, telling him I had several perfect batches and deserved the raise.  If you guessed that none of us got a raise then or ever, you would be right. An exercise in futility!

I lived with two roommates, and one of them was such a ditz that the other girl and I helped and encouraged her to get married as fast we could.  The other girl was nice, but evidently, Mom took such good care of her that she could not take care of herself!  I slaved every Saturday, washing all my clothes by hand and hanging them out to dry on the attached clothesline on our porch. Her clothes always were neatly starched and clean for work.  I made the mistake of borrowing one of her blouses and discovered that they were never washed. When most of her clothes were dirty, she mailed them to her mamma, who washed, starched, ironed them, and mailed them back.  She also failed to get up and get ready for work so many times, and we had to pay for a taxi that I left her to pay it by herself.

Working in the Shoe Shop in Dexter, Maine, was an experience that everyone should have! My job was to zig-zag the backs of Ice Skates, Bowling Shoes, and Golf shoes on an industrial sewing machine.  I did 30 pairs at a time and cut them apart.  I was and am still very fast with my hands, and I am ambidextrous.  I asked for a raise from 1 cent a pair to 2 or 3 cents a pair.  The boss (not the sharpest tool in the shed) came by with his stopwatch (supposedly without me noticing).  I did a lot of movements and not much work until he left.  I never got the raise! As a matter of fact, I was escorted to the door and told that they didn’t need me anymore. 

There were three very good reasons.  1. I talked up Unions.  2. One of the supervisors yelled at me, “get back to work!”  I told him never to call me out of the bathroom again as I picked him up by the front of his shirt and put him up against the wall with his feet dangling  3. A Supervisor thought we should date and dogged my tracks every weekend. I dodged him on the weekend, but when he started getting too friendly at work. The last straw was when seeing him put his arms around the girl next to me and fondle her boobs.   I told him never to touch me!  He didn’t listen, and I attempted to give him a vasectomy without an anesthetic. If he had been a little was slower with his hand, I might have accomplished the deed.  By the way, I still have the guilty scissors!  I was an angry young woman.

When I explained why I was fired to the interviewer from the unemployment department, I was granted full unemployment benefits. That wasn’t the last job I had, and it was a different world than it is now.  There was no lifeline for women in the workplace in the ’50s. Your only alternative was; take the abuse or leave. 

Roadblocks on the road of life

I understand and agree that the roads in our lives will not always be smooth and paved, but you would think there would be a few smooth stretches once in a while! It seems as though we struggle over one hump, and another one pops up right behind.

It would be nice to just roll along on a smoothly paved road, enjoying a warm breeze and sunlight?  I wouldn’t mind coasting for a day or two, or even a week occasionally. 

Microsoft Word and Grammarly were my most recent roadblocks!  They were sitting there with menacing spikes looking forward to punching my tires the minute I move ahead.

Microsoft 2019 Office Pro had a nervous breakdown and was acting funky and sometimes not working at all! I emailed my seller, Indigo Software, and received an immediate reply with specific instructions. I like that in a company!

After following the instructions to the letter uninstalling and re-installing successfully, I discovered this program is a completely different animal!  I have to learn how to use the new word program.

To make matters more complicated, Grammarly was missing in action! I asked for help by email and was promptly supplied with a URL.  Nice!  Unfortunately, the site had no place to install the program!  This was not good. 

I searched in my download file, and lo and behold, it was staring back at me.  It would not install on my machine. HELP!  Spelling is not my long suit, and grammar follows close behind.  Now, a little hot under the collar, I again emailed for instructions.  This time I was instructed to download Grammarly from a new URL, but it was still a no-go!  I finally figured out how to install the program!

We are so looking forward to our daughter coming down for a visit.  It just happened to be during my birthday.  This will be the first time in way over a year that our immediate family will be together.  Many hugs will be exchanged; everyone has had their shots, so we are good to go!

We are cleaning Miranda, our Motor Home; our daughter will have her own “apartment” while she is here.  You grin; I know what you are thinking, “How hard could cleaning a less than 300 sq. ft. room?”  If it was a big room, it would be a piece of cake.  There are more nooks and crannies waiting to skin your knuckles, knees, and elbows than you can imagine. 

Setting Miranda up is a whole lot more than just backing it onto the lot and plugging her in. She is a good girl and loves to travel.  I hope she won’t be disappointed at only driving from the storage yard to the spot near our house.  We promised her we would take her out for a spin as soon as they get the light rail construction finished.  

Happy Mother’s Day

You say today isn’t Mother’s Day?   I know that!  But I think that every day should be an honor to your mother, and you should try to remember all the things she taught you, and overlook the things that are age-telling. 

So she doesn’t move as fast as she used to, but she still gets the job done.  She doesn’t remember everything with the clarity that she did in your youth. Still, she remembers many things you choose to forget, like when you put the cat in the dryer because he was wet!  Or the time you were pissed at her and packed your things in a box and ran away.

She clapped the loudest at your class play when you played a flower and screamed the loudest when you smacked the ball into the outfield the first time.  She sewed your Halloween costume into the night and was up the next morning with pancakes ready for you and your friends.

Maybe wanting you to have everything she didn’t have was not the best thing she did, but it must be up there in the top 10 things that earned her a pat on the back. 

Packages in pretty paper with flowers and the glittery ribbon isn’t what her heart desires; it’s the hugs and the heartfelt thank you’s.  Sitting holding her hand and listening to the stories over and over again will make her happy.  Didn’t she listen to your stories?  Over and over?

My mother had a stroke that put her in the Nursing Home, with only three words in her vocabulary; what they were, isn’t important.  I called her every month and talked for several minutes, pre-cell phone.  You had to pay every minute for those calls.  I could hear the happiness in her voice.  And the plus; I could tell her all my problems, and she just said, “ayah!”

I am the luckiest mother in the world because I have all that love and caring from our kids.  It is hard accepting that I earned it, but it is wonderful.

There may come a time when she won’t be able to listen or talk to you, so make the most of the time you have with your biggest fan! The one person in the world that will love you, no matter what you do or what heights in business you achieve.  

Decisions

I am unabashedly promoting my latest YA book. It would be a good idea to read the first 6 books, before this one, but it could be a stand alone.

I started the books as a Christmas Present for two young people in Seattle and kinda show balled into a series.

The Weller family gave me permission to fling them into space to settle an “Uninhabited” planet. Since they arrived, they have met the Dragon Clan, the Others, and the Merpeople! the Dragons, are not the firebreathing scaley beasts of earth fantasy stories but intelligent beings.  Rainbow and Sunset’s son, Donzereli, is best friends with Ruby and Nolan.

The Others are a race of people that only look like fierce “Yeti’s” wearing their white fur-suits in the frigid south climate.  No explanation is needed for the Merpeople. As a result of the last adventure, Ruby and Nolan are now Merpeople, permanently! Nolan is thrilled that he can’t drown, but Ruby not so much.  What young woman wants gills on her neck?

Remember, in the last book, our adventurers settled down to accept their punishment for deciding to “visit” Bri and Tig’s home under the sea.  This time we will focus on the adult problems a little, but we won’t forget that teens will be teens.

Things are heating up between the Consortium and the New Earth. The dreaded Mr. Hendricks is his usual combatant self and front and center of the group of visitors arriving to preview the colonists’ accomplishments.  Hopefully, before it reaches the boiling point, all parties can come to an understanding before the Dragons close the wormhole forever!

Just what will happen is up in the air. Pun intended!

 The youngsters are ignoring the adult problems.  Donzereli asks permission to explore the continent across the ocean as a summer project.  He had the support of Councilor Klethand, who was enthusiastic one day and the next, saying, “It’s too dangerous!” 

Donzereli is not going to let anything stop him from a fun summer!  He plans the trip and invites all the youngsters to go with him.  Donzereli’s perfect plan goes off without a hitch.  Hang on, this could be a bumpy ride!

This book and the entire series of 7 books are available on Amazon in eBook and in paperback. These are classified as YA, but many of my adult friends like them too!

Wrinkle me this?

You sneak upon me, in the dead of night

When I’m not looking, you give me such a fright

when in the mirror I peak,

you are winking at me, I think

And you continue to sneak

as I scrub and cream

I am losing the battle,

OMG is that a wattle?

my face, and my neck,

My arms, what the heck!

People say I don’t look my age

Are they lying? Can I take it as sage,

Yeah I choose to take as sage.

What do they mean about my age?

A snarky friend once said that

I look good because the fat

Is hiding what lurks beneath the skin

Waiting to pounce and add a double chin

Will it fall to my chest?

And I can’t contest

So ahead I will forge

With wrinkles deep as a gorge,

Will show upon my face,

And I will lose the race,

youth and beauty will escape

And I will join the age race

Until such time I become so wise

I am loved for my sage advise

I looked for a wrinkled face but decided I would use my own. I will admit this one is a “few” years old, so I have acquired a few new wrinkles, but who’s counting?

Have a good day and stay safe!

I owe my Mother!

This is a picture of my Mother probably in her thirties and me about 6 years old.

 1. My mother taught me TO APPRECIATE A JOB WELL DONE.
       “If you’re going to kill each other, do it outside. I just finished cleaning.”

2. My mother taught me RELIGION.
       “You better pray that will come out of the carpet.”

  3. My mother taught me about TIME TRAVEL.
       “If you don’t straighten up, I’m going to knock you into the middle of  next week!”

   4.My mother taught me LOGIC.
       ” Because I said so, that’s why.”

   5. My mother taught me MORE LOGIC.
       “If you fall out of that swing and break your neck, you’re not going to the store with me.”

   6. My mother taught me FORESIGHT.
       “Make sure you wear clean underwear, in case you’re in an accident.”

    7. My mother taught me IRONY.
       “Keep crying, and I’ll give you something to cry about.”

    8 My mother taught me about the science of OSMOSIS.
       “Shut your mouth and eat your supper.”

    9. My mother taught me about CONTORTIONISM.
       “Will you look at that dirt on the back of your neck!”

    10. My mother taught me about STAMINA.
       “You’ll sit there until all that spinach is gone.”

Happy Mother’s Day! I hope you all have a wonderful day with your Mom’s! My Mother is gone now but I have many happy, sad, and funny memories of her! She was one of a kind and the most unique woman I have every known.

Have a good day and stay safe!

Please forgive my absence

Miranda, our faithful Motorhome has requested that we get on with cleaning her and get her ready for more adventures with Dolly Part-on and Sir Fit the White Knight!

Today I shampooed the carpets and washed the kitchen floor, while my partner filled the fresh water tank with water and bleach. He will empty it next week and re-fill it again to rinse it, and then fill it with fresh water after we set up the two filters.

We still need to wash the outside on Miranda and wax her. She likes to be clean and shiny when she pulls into a Resort. Sir Fit and Dolly like it too! They have asked to please go north where it is cooler for a day or two. We are in favor of that idea, too!

I will be back in a day or two posting interesting things after a day or two of rest. Thank you for your consideration. I am pleased with several new followers, and I am following several new people too.

Well, have to take Miranda back to her resting place until we get together for some more primping. She might be tired after all the effort, I know I am.

Have a good day and stay safe.

Sit on the lid and Laugh!

antique box chest close up
Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Build for yourself a strong box
Fashion each part with care
When its as strong as your hand can make it
Put all your troubles there.

Hide there all thought of your failures
And each bitter cup that you quaff
Lock all your heartaches within it
Then sit on the lid and laugh.

Tell no one else its contents
Never its secrets tell
When you’ve dropped in your care and worry
Keep them forever there.

Hide them from sight so completely
That the world will never dream half;
Fasten the strongbox securely
Then sit on the lid and laugh

This is so old that I do not know where or who wrote it. My Husband’s father used to recite it when his kids were down. So if you are down or just feeling sad, try it, and let me know how it works for you.

laughing man laying on hammock
Photo by Djordje Petrovic on Pexels.com

This picture of a person laughing what you should be doing after you fill your box and slam the lid shut and lock it.

Have a great day, and stay safe!

Just Once

Just once I would love to ask the Happiness Engineers a simple question and get a straightforward answer in simple to understand terms.

Today it only took about an hour to get my simple answer to my question about how to publish a previous post again. Honestly, I tried to pose the question in the most “Computerese” possible. I got three URLs of places to look and none addressed my question. When I asked in plain English, I got the right answer. I have to admit I was tempted to answer in my Mother’s language.

We used to have a term, “Easy enough for a 10-year-old to understand.” Well now, referring to anything digital, we need to say, “Easy enough for an 80-year-old to understand.” The 10-year-old’s can program the dang things!

Does anyone else watch commercials and ask oneself, “What the heck were they selling?” You can guarantee there will be a beautiful excruciatingly thin person showing us how to get the cleanest laundry, the shiniest car on the block, and service people arrive in clean white uniforms. Right!

Don’t you love the one where the plumber not only has replaced everything in the house, but cooks dinner and teaches the kids. I would hate to see the bill for that family. They can’t be that bright.

Let’s talk about beautiful young people selling wrinkle cream! If you are in your 20s and 30s, you don’t need wrinkle cream. Unless you lived a much harder life the rest of us mortals! Put a woman in her 60s or 70s on the screen with minimal wrinkles and I am sold on your product. Wrinkles come with living to a rip old age! Products that will clean and moisturize your skin is your best bet.

Here is a standard joke: I bought some new Wrinkle Cream, and it works wonderfully, I have tons on new wrinkles!

I love all the new “additives” to the laundry. You can now have clothes that are softer, smell cleaner forever, resist wrinkles, and dog and cat hair won’t stick! When we were traveling and using laundromats, we never had to add fabric softener, there was so much residual inside the dryers, it wasn’t necessary. I don’t use softeners at home either. How hard can your clothes be? If you hung your towels out to dry, maybe, but apartments and HOAs don’t allow that anymore.

Let’s talk about cars! Do we really need a car that can compete on the Indianapolis 500 to drive to work and back? Do we need to go from 0 to 60 in 25 seconds? Pretty soon it will not be necessary to have a driver’s license or take a driver’s test! The cars won’t need humans to control them. They can drive themselves, and parallel park, I have to admit I like that. There will be a huge scream when a governor is built into the cars to keep them below the speed limit. The backup cameras are nice, we have one on our Motorhome.

From the number of accidents, it appears a driver’s license maybe should be replaced with a basic intelligence test. You should not be behind the wheel if you can’t handle a big gulp, a burger, fries, and text your friends, too!

We have to stop wrong-way drivers from getting on the freeway. Ideas are to spend lots of $$$ on signs, and public awareness on TV is not working! I have a thought; how about a tack strip for entrance? You know the ones that you can only drive one way, the other way puts holes in your tires? Another calmer way is to have the wrong way entrance with that surface that rattles your car and scrambles your brains if you speed over them. BTW, not a short strip either, make it the entire entrance, to get their attention.

And the last thing, the little old couple that wash their 6 dishes every night in the dishwasher, because it takes less water than washing them by hand. That’s right up there with a used car salesman giving you a good deal! I recently talked to a RV dealer and was told, “We buy your RV for the wholesale price and sell you a new one at wholesale price.” I could feel the swamp lapping at my front door!

Well, guys, and gals, it has been fun. You need to laugh, even if you have to laugh at yourself! Have a good day, and stay safe!

Guess what?

My latest book has been uploaded, but hold the presses, it will take a few days for Kindle to review. I am not totally happy with the justification, and will probably work on it and reload it. Most readers will not notice the difference, but I will.

This is the sequel to Murder on Lake Haverly. The premise of this book comes from a transaction that I actually did put together that took 2 years to close. I can’t tell you the original story, but there was the FBI, Sheriff’s Deputy, AZ Attorney General, and several other people involved. Of course, all the names were changed and most of the story is total fiction. It was the hardest and the most fun transaction ever!

Maye is up to her ears in trouble, which is not unusual. Her best friend with benefits, Frank is up to his neck with trying to keep Maye safe and get her to say yes to a trial marriage. He wants the real thing, but she is gun shy and likes their life.

Maye writes a Lease-Option to help Nate Harris into his dream home with his wife and baby girl Amanda. No one took the threat from the seller’s ex-husband languishing in Florence Prison seriously. But, they should have! He has long arms that are reaching out from Prison. The only people that know where the ex is hiding is Maye’s escrow agent Viv, Max her lawyer, and Nate.

Everything is hunky-dory until the ex-wife disappears. The bodies start piling up and Maye’s pain in the ass best friend, Lavonne is kidnapped! She is seeing red, and that is not good!

Going back to school

be brilliant neon light
Photo by Timothy Paule II on Pexels.com
turned off laptop computer
Photo by Ken Tomita on Pexels.com

I just discovered that Kindle is doing a whole new thing! Out with the old and in with the new!

We used to type our manuscript and format it for an ebook and again for a Paperback book.

I read about the new way until my eyes were so tired I put a cold cloth over them. Hopefully, within the next few days I will have crammed enough into my poor little head that I can make head-way and get up to speed.

Please think kind thoughts for my success. If any of you have already become experts with the “new world” of self-publishing books, I am up to do collaborating.

Have a good day and stay safe.

Good Morning!

Poor Miranda has been put out to pasture for three years and she is tired of doing nothing. She talked to us and demanded that we clean her up!

We were planning on having our Dawta sleep in her while she is visiting us. She gently told us she needs a bath and some deep cleaning inside before she would let anyone stay in her bedrrom. We listened to her because she is bigger than us!

Today we are cleaning the inside and outside of the cabinets and in the living room. We have cleaned the bedroom, enough that she smiled at us and said, “Good Job!”

Well, gotta go, she is calling us to come to bring her down for more sprucing up. If you see her, tell her how much prettier she looks.

The picture of her and us is the day we signed papers to adopt her as our best friend.

Have a good day, and stay safe!

Take what you need!

Wouldn’t it be nice if we could just pick one of these whenever we needed it? And as soon as one is picked, it is replaced with another one just like it.

Yeah, I know, some people will grab them all, but it doesn’t matter if they are replaced as often as they are taken.

Can you see a couple that you want or need right now? Go ahead and pick several. It’s okay, they will be replaced.

Have a good day and stay safe.

Life Goes On

Has the last year of social isolation made you appreciate the freedom that we used to have? Yes, I know many of you went on as if there was no pandemic, and many of you got away with your foolish actions without a hitch. But others were not so lucky, over a half-million total, and the total can go up again.

If the Covid 19 virus mutates and the people in the know are saying it will, we could be in trouble again. On the other hand, the current administration is listening to the scientific experts and making the best decisions possible to keep us safe.

There are several things that we can do to protect ourselves. Until there is true herd immunity, and or everyone in the world has had the vaccine that can have it, we can do several simple things. Wear a mask, even if it is just a cloth mask. BTW, letting it fall down and expose your nose makes wearing it useless. Social distancing, 6 feet would be best. Take your temperature often and if you run a fever, get a test. If it is positive, self isolate and see a Doctor.

My hubby and I are in the high-risk category; we started social distancing over a year ago. The Company that Shirl works with sent him home, and he worked remotely, so we were okay money-wise. We shopped once a week, and I made cloth bags, so we didn’t have to handle plastic bags. We wore masks and gloves while in the grocery store, washed all the produce, and wiped every other item. I also wiped all packages delivered from stores. I hated wearing the mask and still do. It is hard when you are asthmatic, but I did it for myself and for other people. I stopped taking sewing jobs for my neighbors in my community. We did not allow anyone to come inside our house. I am now accepting sewing jobs.  

Yesterday, my best friend stopped by to drop off a gift for us. She cannot have the vaccine for medical reasons, so we wore masks, and she didn’t come into my house. We met outside, keeping 6 feet apart, and both of us masked. It was the hardest thing for us to not hug.

Today a friend is coming over for lunch. We are eating outside, 6 feet apart, even though we are both vaccinated and presumed safe. We each bring our lunch and do not share. I know it is probably not necessary, but we both got used to the process. I am so looking forward to meeting people for lunch at Olive Garden for Soup and Salad.

Today I am making a Chocolate cake with Chocolate Fudge frosting for my son’s birthday party tonight.  Want me to save you a piece?

 

“How may I help You”?

Do you remember the “good old days” when if you had a question you could pick up the phone and in minutes get a real live person on the phone to answer your questions?

Our children and grandchildren will remember our good old days when you NEVER could get a real person on the phone, unless you count a “bot” or “AI” as a person.

This morning I got a call from a “real person” informing me that I needed to call the Doctor and get consent for me to decline training that was billed at $24.00. I suggested that they “do their job” and fax the necessary paper to the Doctor for him to agree that since my husband had been using the INR monitor for over 8 years, he could train me. I further suggested that they attach a cover letter giving specific instructions for the Doctor to follow.

This is the second time this Company demanded I do their job for them, and the second time I told them how to do their job and demanded they do it.

In case you haven’t encountered the changes in Insurance, let me be the first one to give you a heads-up! I was excited when the Insurance companies instituted along with the Doctors the practice of Tele-Doctor phone calls, we could even see each other. I met my new Doctor that way, and found it very convenient.

Now some of the Vendors, like the company that provides the monitor and equipment for us to test out INR in-home are jumping on the bandwagon and charging us for the difference in what Insurance pays. I get it! It is only $24.00. But in case you haven’t thought this through, every time you add a small co-pay for one more thing, it adds up. And contrary to popular opinion, Medicare recipients DO pay for their insurance! It is subtracted from our monthly check. And in my case, it is nearly 1/4 of my stipend.

The Cardiology Office decided in October that they should get paid for having one of their workers call us to inform us whether to take more or less Wafarin depending on the results of our tests. We filed a grievance with the Insurance Co. because I assumed that a contract was for the whole year, not as long as they felt like fulfilling it. We won that battle but lost the war. This year if we allow them to call us, we will have to pay.

I am not done but, understand, if you aren’t paying attention, it could cost you the money you should not have to pay. My Doctor is trying his best to help me find a way to get the help I need without breaking the bank. I love the Honor health internet program that allows me to leave a message for the Doctor and get an appointment online. Getting our vaccines was a breeze. Honor called us and set the appointment and we drove in got our shot and in 20 minutes drove home.

I wish Customer service was not a thing on the past. I miss getting the service that I feel that I am paying for, but instead getting the run around. I know you love the internet-only customer service, but have you noticed on the news the number of people that spent hours online trying to get an appointment for their vaccine? I hope you weren’t shocked at people driving to another county to sneak in line. Can you blame them for wanting to live?

Do not annoy the little woman

 

My husband and I were still newlyweds when he was “invited” or “commanded” to attend a cocktail party at his Regional Managers prestigious home just outside of Boston Massachusets

We were excited, of course, to see how the upper class lived.  When we arrived were offered a drink, I, of course, accepted a glass of white wine, and Shirl accepted a ginger ale.  We mingled with the other guests and were having a good time.

The Regional Manager  (I will call him Fred, not his real name) got close to me and said in a conspirital tone, “Mrs. Colbath, I noticed your husband did not have a cocktail or wine.”

“Yes, that is true; he does not drink.  As a matter of fact, he has never had a drink in his life.”

“That is interesting because I personally reviewed his AVA test, and it shows he does not have an addictive personality.  So he could have a drink without any harmful effects.  Why don’t we slip him a drink and see what happens; what do you think?”

By this time, I was a little annoyed; okay, I was a little pissed that anyone would consider slipping my husband a mickey when they knew he chose not to drink.

“Okay, Fred, let’s do it!  It will be fun to see him let loose.  He hasn’t had a drink in forever; he is an alcoholic, you know, but it will be fun to watch!  I might suggest you move that vase and those lovely ceramic busts.  The last time he got drunk, he broke every stick of furniture in the house.  This will be a hoot!”  I enthusiastically said.

Fred immediately left me standing in the corner and sashayed over to Shirl, hooking his arm in his.  For the remainder of the evening, he stayed by his side, telling everyone that, “Shirl doesn’t drink!”  He watched him like a hawk.

I, on the other hand, watching this performance, was trying not to laugh out loud.  I enjoyed the evening more than Fred will ever know.

We finally left the party, and on the way home, I confessed what I had done.  I was a little afraid Shirl might be a little mad at me for pulling a stunt like that.  He said, “I wondered why he was staying so close to me all evening.”   We have laughed more about that in the following years

It is amazing how many people have tried to slip him a drink over the years.  People that you would assume loved him and cared for him.  He is not an alcoholic; he is just honoring his Mother’s wishes.

The picture at the top of the page is our wedding picture.

 

Bigger, Stronger, and Smarter, but not necessarily in that order!

unrecognizable person sleeping under blanket
Photo by Ketut Subiyanto on Pexels.com

My philosophy of raising children is simple.  You need patience, lots of patience!  And you need to talk to them.

Discipline is okay, but those little people are incredibly smart, and they can reason. They remember everything, and later in life, your actions to and for them will bite you in the ass.

You, right now, are shaping the next generation!

You are not their friend; you are their parents! They will be a carbon copy of you.  Make sure it is an improvement of yourself. 

My husband and I love to play games.  Our favorite is Cribbage.  My co-worker expressed an interest in learning the game, so I invited her and her husband to our apartment to play cards. She seemed a lot of fun at work and was sure we would have a fun night.

The mother said, “We would love to, but our daughter just will not go to bed; we have tried that before, and she would stand right at our shoulder and annoy the hell out of us.”

I told her, “Don’t worry, just have her in her pajamas, and I guarantee that she not only will not fight to go to bed but will also ask me to let her go to bed!”

She said, “Okay, I have to see this!” I cautioned her to go along with anything I said.

The evening arrived!  Before their arrival, I prepared our bedroom.  I turned down the bed and sprinkled my “Magic Powder” on our bed and made it up again.

When the couple arrived, they introduced us to their daughter.  I took her aside and asked her to come with me to see the surprise I prepared just for her.  I led her to our bedroom.  As I turned down the bed a little, I said to her, “I just wanted to show you where you will sleep when you are ready.”

She looked at the bed but said nothing.    

I continued, “but of course not now, as a matter of fact, you should not get too close to the bed, because I put “Magic Powder” in the bed.  This is a powerful Magic Powder,  and if you smell it now,  you will fall instantly asleep!”  

I kept between her and the bed and continued, “When you are ready to go to sleep, just tell me that you want to smell the “Magic Powder,” and we will come in, and you can get into bed. The minute you smell the Magic Powder, you will fall instantly asleep and have wonderful dreams!”

I could tell she really wanted to smell my Magic Powder but was didn’t want to go to sleep, so she allowed me to lead her to the living room. She couldn’t wait to tell her parents, and they played along. 

She was dying of curiosity and wanted to smell the magic powder.  But of course, I cautioned her no go near the bed.  I played it up real big.  I told her to only tell me when she wants to smell the Magic Powder.

She watched us play cards for a while, and finally, her curiosity got the better of her. and she asked me to let her go in the bedroom and smell the Magic Powder.  The look on her parent’s faces was priceless.

I did it up big again, and led her into the bedroom, and asked again if she was sure she was ready to go to sleep because she would fall asleep in just a few minutes.

She got into the bed and smelled the “Magic Powder,” and we talked for a few minutes.  In just a few minutes, her eyes got heavy, and she dropped off.

We had a nice time playing cards and later her parents had to carry her out to their car.

I still can’t believe this, but the next day her mother called me and asked, “Where can I get some of that “Magic Powder?”  I need some; I can’t get her to go to sleep without it!”

Will Rogers

Will Rogers, who died in a plane crash with Wylie Post in 1935, was probably the greatest political sage this country has ever known.  Enjoy the following:

“Ten men in our country could buy the whole world and ten million can’t buy enough to eat.” – Will Rogers

“It takes a lifetime to build a good reputation, but you can lose it in a minute.” – Will Rogers

“An onion can make people cry, but there has never been a vegetable invented to make them laugh.” – Will Rogers

“You know horses are smarter than people. You never heard of a horse going broke betting on people.” – Will Rogers

“Good judgment comes from experience, and a lot of that comes from bad judgment.” – Will Rogers

“The difference between death and taxes is that death doesn’t get worse every time Congress meets.” – Will Rogers

“I am not a member of any organized political party — I am a Democrat.” – Will Rogers

“If you feel the urge, don’t be afraid to go on a wild goose chase. What do you think wild geese are for anyway?” – Will Rogers

“The problem ain’t what people know. It’s what people know that ain’t so that’s the problem.” – Will Rogers

“Be thankful we’re not getting all the government we’re actually paying for.” – Will Rogers

“Buy land. They ain’t making any more of the stuff.” – Will Rogers

“There are men running governments who shouldn’t be allowed to play with matches.” – Will Rogers

“What the country needs is dirtier fingernails and cleaner minds.” – Will Rogers

“There is no trick to being a humorist when you have the whole government working for you.” – Will Rogers

“The income tax has made more liars out of the American people than golf has.” – Will Rogers

“Lord, the money we do spend on Government and it’s not one bit better than the government we got for one-third the money twenty years ago.”- Will Rogers

“It is better for someone to think you’re a fool than to open your mouth and remove all doubt.” – Will Rogers

I hope these thoughts made you laugh. We all need a laugh now and then. We also need to laugh at ourselves, might as well, or someone will do it for you.

Have a little fun today, and stay safe!

Koyaanisqatsi

There are those that see the handwriting on the wall! One tribe doesn’t care because they have an exit strategy, and the other wants to fight to preserve. It is a toss-up who wins.

Vanilla Bean Ice Cream with Homemade Ice Magic

Now you are talking! Love it! We used to make ice cream at home and vanilla cookies for invitation-only “Ice Cream Social!”

Mt. Kenya: The Abode of the Gikuyu God.

It is too bad that when we encounter a new name we do not take the time to lead the proper pronunciation. If I sounded it out right it has a better sound, although Kenya is okay. It is beautiful with the mist and snow.

Faith Quote By Pope John Paul Ii: “Faith and Reason…”

I am not a religious person but I believe there should be a lot more reason used in faith!

Why Every African Should Be Rich: Lessons From an African Childhood

Making your own toys is no confined to African children. Growing up as poor as dirt we made many of our own games and played them with the same gusto. Many skinned knees, scraped elbows, and more. The great story grabbed me and held me, would love to read more.

Portuguese Folktales. Thirteen Posts in One!

I started following you recently and look forward to more of your stories and maybe re-visit some I have missed.

Temple of the Moon Treehouse Lodge, Seattle, Washington

This is wonderful. I will have to make it a point to see it when I get back to Seattle.

Waterfall Wall, Swindon, England

That waterfall is beautiful! So peaceful and tranquil! A great place to read a good book or just contemplate the universe!

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