Monday, December 20, 2010

Who's Your Grammar?

I posted a status on Facebook today that sparked a record (for me) 18 comments.

What would incite such scintillating conversation?


Oh yeah. I live on the edge.

In the process, I learned of this website. (Herein is the link to the particular issue that plagued me.) If you want to learn some dirty little literary secrets, go take a peek.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Looky What the Dog Dragged In...

To those of you who remember me remotely, I have not, as otherwise suspected, fallen off the face of the earth.

And....good news:

We now have the computer of our (my husband's) dreams. The iMac has come.

*cue the heavenly choir*


He doesn't want it on the internet. That lasted about a day. Or less. As a consolation prize, he purchased an iPad for me. A wi-fi iPad, to boot.

I knooooow!!!!

I don't need his ole stinky computer anyway.

Except to edit photos and stuff.

But that's all.

I promise.


Friday, September 24, 2010

Just So You Know I'm Still Here...

Life, since I last posted, has shifted into fast(er) forward.

We are borrowing a laptop, so we still don't have the (end all, be all) Mac yet. It's coming, one day...

In the meantime...

This year we lost all three of the cats we'd had for the last 15 (ish) years. We have CoCo left, whom I rescued out of the middle of the highway a year ago. A week before we left for vacation, we put down our last old cat. We had a week to enjoy the relief of being a one pet family. And we were not even home.
On the last day of va(stay)cation we went to a friend's house to "play" with the puppies her dog had.

You know what's coming don't you...

We now have a 2 pet home. But I swear a dog is like having
6 cats. Except 6 cats would be a WHOLE lot easier! (I've never had to walk a cat.) All I do anymore is, take the dog potty, walk the dog (2x a day!), get the dog out of the trash, tell her to get down, stop biting, etc. I've also never washed a cat.

Dogs, are clearly high maintenance.

But then I see this face.


Monday, August 9, 2010

Looky who posted on her blog...

So, in addition to my normally spotty posting recently, I now can't post much even when I want to. Lightening struck a couple of weeks ago and took out the only computer we had. It wasn't much, I admit, but it would still surf the internet when it took a mind to. We are now in search of a computer. Definitely getting an Apple this time, but we can't just run pick one up in the same way we do when we run out of milk.

In addition, the riding lawn mower has bitten the dust. That doesn't have a whole lot to do with this post other than to point out that my house and everything in it seems to be crumbling around my ankles.

On a brighter note, we got a puppy. (IS that a brighter note?! Doesn't seem so when I get up at 1am to let her out to tinkle.) I have tons of photos on my phone, but can't upload them...ya computer. If I figure out how to do it from my phone, you'll be the first to know. I promise.

Peace out.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Love and Loss

This has been a hard year for us where cats are concerned.

Last fall, we began putting our cats outside. One of the cats thanked us by promptly leaving. For good. That's always hard because there's no closure. Did the cat go somewhere and die? Get hit by a car? Take up with someone else? I'll never know what happened to my beautiful golden eyed, silver Monaco. But it seems appropriate that, just as she walked into our lives 14 years before, she would walk out as well.

We got Monet as a kitten, and not too long afterwards, were given her half brother, Tiger. Monet was the "alpha" cat, not only bossing around the other cats, but us, as well. A couple of months ago, a pack of three dogs came through my yard and killed my girl.
Last year, a white cat started skulking around and helping himself to my cat's food. He was very skittish and I was torn between chasing him off and trying to tame him. Guess which won out? I put food out for him so he'd leave my cat's food alone and began the slow process of taming him. Turns out he was a huge mushpot who, while he never let me pick him up, sure did love being petted. Earlier this year, he got sick and a couple of days later died of an unknown cause.

Tiger was just happy to be here. Content to sleep and eat, he did nothing to rock the boat, but he sure didn't appreciate anyone rocking his boat. Once he got comfortable (wherever that was) he didn't want to be messed with, thank you. Unless it was time to eat. Again. That's why, last Saturday, I knew something was wrong when he turned up his nose at his breakfast. I immediately took him to the vet. After a week of tests and finding what was NOT wrong, we realized there was nothing more that could be done and made the difficult decision to euthanize him.

So now, we have gone from 4 cats, to 1 in rather short order. God knew exactly what I would need when he had me pluck a "black sock" from the middle of a busy highway a year ago. My little tripod legged Coco is just a year old and full of love, affection and playfulness.

A balm to my grieved heart.

Monday, July 12, 2010

Ride 'Em Cowgirl!

Summer seems to be sweeping me away...

We have been busy with day-to-day things that somehow consume every available moment so that there is no time to blog about potential bloggable moments.

I have a new worry that has developed in the last two days: my oldest cat, Tiger seems to be very sick. I took him to the vet Saturday and he has fluid in his abdomen. Why or where it came from seems to be the big question. Could be anything from an inflamed liver, to a virus called FIP, which is untreatable. He has refused food since Saturday. I lost Tiger's half sister a few months ago to some dogs who attacked her in our yard.

To say my heart is heavy and distracted would be an understatement...

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

If Self Loathing Could Be Raised to an Art Form


The word makes me cringe. Only because I lack so much.

Do you ever just step outside yourself and take a good, long look at who you've become. Yeah, I try not to, either.

But today I did.

Frustrated by the many good things I want to do...and don't, mostly because of a lack of discipline.

Writing, painting, running, homemaking, gardening, cooking, knitting...blogging... I have so many interests, yet it seems that all I can accomplish is going to work and spending a few short minutes/hours with the family in the evening.

If I do find time to devote to my pursuits, I find myself meandering around getting ready to do it until I actually run out of time to do it.

I look at men and women who lived 40-60 years ago and didn't have the advantages or shortcuts I have today, yet they accomplished so much. (Maybe because, many of my advantages have turned into more distraction than anything...)

I envy those who are driven by their creativity.Those who create almost compulsively. I have just enough creativity to make me crazy. I want to create, then, if I have opportunity, I sit like a lump wondering what to do and where to start. If I happen to have an original, creative thought, it usually arrives at the most inopportune time. Like when I'm in the middle of working.

You want to know when I find myself the most motivated?
When I either get disgusted enough, or guilty enough with myself. "Ooooh, haven't been running or exercised in 3 days! Aaaand you're not eating well! You're thickening up there! Better move it!" *Cue guilty panic.*

"Just do it." Says the now cliche advertising tag line.

Some days, that's easier said than done.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Monday, June 7, 2010

Proof that I it.

Wow. You can tell school's out around here...I actually have time to do blog posts in the morning! Everyone is still in bed and I have some quiet time to myself.

I've been meaning to share this for awhile...well, you know how that goes...

This is a painting that I'm working on. Truthfully, I haven't worked on it in weeks. Haven't touched any paint in weeks. *sigh*

It's just some fun doodling. No real plan to get here or wherever else it's going.

Serendipity painting...

Sunday, June 6, 2010

Quality Time...with Me

Sunday afternoon...

A thoughtful husband who insisted I rested. He also made sure everyone else was resting so the house was quiet for awhile...

Time on the computer... it's not the Apple of my eye, but it works. (So far...)

A hot summer day at the computer just cries out for an icy glass of Coke. The Real Thing.

A Coke and a Blog.

I think there's a new SuperBowl ad there somewhere...

Friday, June 4, 2010

The Adventure Continues...

More photos from really was pretty up there. I'm enjoying going through the photos again... I really didn't want to leave.

Doesn't this look like a portal into a magical place? Portal

Old Shed
Pine Bough Frame
Creek My First Time fishing! Cleaning the catch! My Job...Turning on the water to rinse the ick.

Oooh...He's a CUTIE!!!
Ahem. Moving right along....

Deer (?) Skeletons

Thursday, June 3, 2010

I Went Down Deep...

Memorial Day weekend found me and my family traveling with friends.

Sounds lovely. Especially since my friend volunteered her 15 year old daughter to help watch my daughter.

I began picturing myself languishing about and alternately living it up like Don King.

Then Jean says, "Oh, and bring your machete."

WHAT?!! Where are these people taking me??!!

Turns out, we were headed deep into the woods of Alabama.

Creek behind Hezzy House
Hezzy House backview
Hezzy House frontview

No. My side is not hurting me. (Unless you count the machete
poking me in the ribs.)
BTW: That machete wouldn't cut hot butter. Nor would it bruise
the leaf of a briar bush.

But it pains me to think about it, apparently...
To be continued...

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

An ALMOST Interesting Post...

I feel that we are on the verge of getting a new computer for my husband. This cheers me greatly because perhaps, then, I wouldn't have to worry about uploading my pics onto this computer because he's in the middle of some project that I might screw up because I was uploading pictures.

Case in point: This post is NOT going to regale you with my AWESOME Memorial Day weekend hijinks because I CAN'T UPLOAD MY PHOTOS RIGHT NOW.


Suffice it to say, I had a MARVELOUS time at an idyllic location buried deep in the back woods of Alabama.

It was a weekend full of fishing, fireflies, tramping through the woods (machete in hand), horseback riding, playing in the creek, rowing across the pond and generally sitting around sighing with satisfaction.

And just as SOON as I can, I'll post some pics.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010


I love to read. I read voraciously, which has given birth to a love of words. I love to put words together in a creative way to say something rather ordinary. (I practice this on my Facebook statuses which is the best place I've found to say something without saying anything at all.)

Somehow though, it's never occurred to me to BE a writer.

Then a friend tells me about her great idea for a book.

She asks me to help her write it.


I can't even string my own thoughts together halfway coherently; what makes me think I can translate someone else's ideas into a story?

She gave me an assignment to write a short story. Because, as she puts it, "we gotta get OUT there."

So I did.

And I love it.

But it scares me.

I think it's a good story. But I think I would be completely embarrassed if someone actually read it. Something that was supposed to be suspenseful ended up a little more sensual than I thought it would.

And now I completely get when a writer says their story took on a life of it's own.

Back to the storyboard.

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Remembering the Poor and Neglected...and That's About as Far as I've Gotten

Oh blog, how I've missed you.

There has honestly been no extra time to pay you the attention you deserve.

Or me for that matter.

Remembering to just breathe.

Sometimes, even that is a tall order.

Sunday, May 9, 2010

I Joined the Club

Don't you just love our matching Mother's Day tattoos?!! :P

I really enjoy visiting blogs. Due to the gifts of writing and creativity bloggers can have, I feel as if I've gotten to know these authors personally.

Last night, I actually did.

I found out one of my blogging friends, Michele, lives in a town about 45 minutes from me. Michele has two blogs. I really enjoy I'm not Cheap I'm Thrifty because who doesn't want to hear about someone's great bargain finds?! Trading Ashes for Beauty is her "life" blog.

When we realized our proximity, we began hatching a plan to meet live and in person.

Fast forward several months....

I got a Facebook message yesterday telling me she was on her way into town! I was so grateful that I had a rare day with nothing on the schedule! My daughter and I (poor daddy was working) met Michele and her family for dinner and just jumped into conversation like we'd done it many times before! It was SUCH a lovely evening! The most disappointing part of it was when it ended!!!

We both agreed that we HAD to get together again...I just hope it's sooner rather than later!

Saturday, April 24, 2010

The Beginners Beginning Guide to Couponing

Let me say, right off the bat, that most of the information here comes from a coupon workshop I just took led by Jenny Martin from Southern Savers and from the information on the website. So jump on over there and check out her easy to navigate site. (Uh, right after you read this post.) I am receiving NO compensation from Jenny or Southern Savers by writing this post.

I've been clipping coupons for my grocery shopping ever since I got married over 20 years ago. However, in the last month, I think I've realized how to save money more effectively with coupons.

Excuse me...did you just say, " I don't have time to clip coupons?"! (Yes you did. I heard you.)
That's like saying "I don't have time to save money" which we all know is just stupid. As with any new activity, you're not going to be proficient right away. It takes practice. But I betcha if you do this ONE time and save a significant amount of money, I saved $100 at the grocery store on my first try and now I can't wait to go play the "grocery game" again.

It's super simple.

You are going to maximize your savings by buying an item on sale and pairing a coupon (or two) with it. That's pretty much it in a nutshell.

Now if you're going to do this, here are some basic things you need to know.

  1. You need coupons.
  2. You need to know what's on sale.
  3. You can't have brand loyalty.
  4. You don't HAVE to go to a bunch of different stores to save money. (But you might want to go to more than one.)
Coupons: Find them in the Sunday paper (larger city papers have the most to offer) or online at sites like, and You can also buy coupons online. One reputable source that I'm most familiar with is The Coupon Clippers . Now why in the world would someone BUY coupons?! Yeah. I wondered that too, so I asked. Here's what Rachel from The Coupon Clippers said: "Well, because many places the newspaper costs $2.75... if someone wants, say 10 of one item (i.e., 10 packages of Marcal toilet paper), they'd have to spend $27.50 buying 10 Atlanta Journal and Constitutions.... and then do all the pulling out of the coupons and then the cutting. Whereas, they can just pay us $2.00 and we'll ship them 10 coupons for the $2 off Marcal Toilet paper. So, it saves them time and money. Instead, we buy the papers and do the cutting.

If you spend $6, you're going to save $60 at the store, if you do not double the coupon value."

Knowing what's on sale: What I love about Southern Savers is, Jenny posts the absolute best price on items. She doesn't just list items in the sale flyer, because not every item in the flyer is really on sale. She's doing the work for you.
Items are usually on sale once every 6 weeks. This is called the sale cycle. So when you find an item on sale at it's lowest price, you will buy as many as you need to last you six weeks, making sure to pair a coupon with each item. That might mean one box of cereal or three, depending on your family.

Now there are slightly less than a jillion ways to organize coupons. My favorite lazy way is to get my coupons out of the Sunday paper and write the date in marker on the front of the insert and file it in an accordion file according to month. Each week, I check Southern Savers for the grocery specials which lists the coupon needed for each item and then I go through my inserts and cut my coupons. Easy, peasy, lemon cheesy.

Hopefully, this has piqued your interest and encouraged you to TRY. It is not hard. It takes a little time and a little thought, but it is SO worth it.

If you're curious to learn more, go here for Jenny's Get Started Guide.

I'm betting the first time you save some money or actually get something FREE, you'll scoot over here and tell me and the rest of the world about it, won't you?


I thought so.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Yarden Bounty

This weekend my husband took a stroll through our yard and this was the result. While others with more decorating savvy would have pulled out the cut crystal vases; hubby, always resourceful, pulled old drink bottles and small bowls from the cupboard. (Perhaps this also speaks to the fact that there are NO cut crystal bowls in the house?) So this week, as I've fixed lunches and grabbed dishes from the cupboard to piece together meals, I've caught the gentle fragrance of roses wafting up.

It somehow adds a bit of gentility to our otherwise helter-skelter lives.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Media Cabinet Revival


Two--NOT one, but TWO remarkable things have happened today.

One. I figured out how to transfer pictures from my phone to my computer. ALL.BY.MYSELF.

Please hold your applause....

Because you will be amazed to hear that I finished, yes FINISHED a project.

I know. I know.

What? You don't believe me?

I got pictures.

Check it:

Media cabinet--Before:
(Definitely in need of a revival. No?)
Cardboard squares cut to size.
Fabric cut to cover cardboard.
Glued fabric to cardboard with decoupage glue.
Inserted into picture openings.

How bout them apples?!

Monday, April 19, 2010

In Memoriam...Monet

It's been a hard weekend, folks.

I started down my driveway early Friday morning to find my cat lying there having been mauled by dogs.

I got Monet when she was a kitten. We picked her out of the litter, my friend telling my husband, "Oh, this one is a sweetie. Very loving."


She became MY cat. She hissed and complained at anyone else who was near. Tolerating them but little else.

My husband graciously allowed her and her half brother, Tiger, and a beautiful grey cat called Monaco, to live indoors for many years; then hubby got fed up with having to dig me out from under the cats at night to sleep with me. :D

The older the cats got, the more digestive trouble they began to have and hubby lost it when someone lost their lunch on one of his cameras. (Can't say as I blame him...) So, outside they went.

Monet always greeted me as I arrived home. Meowing loudly to inform me of the days events. After I went inside, she would hop up on the warm hood of the truck and sleep.

Most mornings I could count on her sitting in my kitchen window staring at me as I made coffee, making sure I realized it was time for breakfast.

Making coffee has never been so lonely.

Although she was 15, she was feisty and wasn't showing signs of aging. I am so angry that she was taken from me in such a violent way.

And that we were helpless to prevent it.

My brain is at odds with itself. Wondering at the depth of grief I have-- "It wasn't a human, it was an animal." "This is part of the circle of life." -- is at war with-- "She was my baby." "She was a family member."

So while I'm trying to reconcile all this in my head, Tiger and Coco (remember the three legged kitty?) are getting lots of extra strokes and hugs.

Monday, April 5, 2010

Sometimes, the Only Way to Go is to Stop

So I got sick this weekend.

It really wasn't a bad thing.
It just made it more of a challenge to work on Saturday.

But Sunday?

Oh, blessed Sunday.

It seemed sacrilege to stay home from church on Easter Sunday, but actually observing the Sabbath and having a day of rest did so much for my soul.

My girl and I read the paper (funnies first), had monkey bread, read all 4 Gospel accounts of the Resurrection (could you IMAGINE being Mary and suddenly recognizing someone who you thought was dead was now ALIVE and standing before you?!), we sat on the couch awhile watching a few videos, I read, I rested, we took a walk, we painted, we had mac and cheese for supper and called it a day.

And now-- it's spring break!

I still have to go to work, but not having to wake up a family and motivate them toward the door and the day....

makes me feel like I'M on VACATION!

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

A Novel Life


If yesterday had been a book, it would have been a thriller with all sorts of plot twists.
There was the irate client issue to resolve. When I tried to deal with her Friday, there was no talking to her. I referred her (gladly) to my co-owner and tried to brace her for the storm to come. Except when she came in this time, she wasn't irate. She was rational and reasonable and will probably be a new client. Win?

Then there was the matter of my schedule which played fruit basket turnover. Last minute cancellations led to frantic calls to people on the waiting list which led to the 2 hour lunch that opened up shrinking to 15 minutes. (That's O.K., I'd rather be busy. But my tummy does have a bad habit of demanding food every so often.)

Then, my final client of the day, whom I looked forward to because I knew would be a basic, simple highlight, surprised me by saying, "I colored my hair a few weeks ago and I want to match it and brighten it up with some highlights."

Le sigh.

T'was not a big deal, in fact, it paled in comparison to some of the other doozies I'd faced recently, but it did considerably tax my last two remaining brain cells...

But in the midst of the flurry of activity and the apparent emotional unbalance of some people, I watched God pave the way and details fall into place.

But if any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all generously and without reproach, and it will be given to him. James 1:5

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Thursday, March 25, 2010

There's My Plan, or We Could do My Plan...

Yes, this week has been challenging. Our school had a memorial service for Jessie on Saturday. My husband and I wanted to go, although neither of us had met her. I think we were feeling a sympathetic grief as parents. DH was invited to play the piano at the service which gave him an invitation and opportunity to Do Something.

I didn't go, since our daughter didn't know the girl and I was dealing with my own drama that day. It was the first free day I'd had at home and I was all motivated to move heaven and earth (or at the very least, rearrange the dust around the house), and I woke up with a tension migraine. I was puzzled, aggravated and frustrated. Puzzled, because I'd had a massage the day before. Aggravated, because "how dare my body rise up in rebellion like that?!" (And after all I had done for it!) Frustrated, because I had no time to be sidelined.

You know what? I've spent the whole week griping about that. About how my weekend didn't go as I planned. About how I don't have time to do what I need to do and then, when I do have time, this happens.


Why am I still whining about this?

Because I don't like not being in control.

It makes me mad when I think I've orchestrated my circumstances to my specifications and a monkey wrench knocks them off kilter.

I fret because I know that another weekend will have to roll around again before I really have time to Get Things Done.
And then, there are a myriad of other things to fret over, so my mind turns thoughts over and over like so many worry beads.

Then I am reminded of the verse in Matthew 6:27 that says: "Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life?"

I'll give it another shot this weekend. I'll do what I can where I can and leave the rest to another day.
And maybe I'll have time to make a cool necklace out of those worry beads.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010


Going about my daily life seems sacrilege.
As if I don't realize life has stopped.
Yet I rise, make coffee and go about my day as if nothing has happened.


Life has been arrested. But no bond has been set because, no amount of money can buy it back.
Yet life goes on.


As a society, we've grown to expect things instantly. Coffee, cash, food...but not death. Yet it happens more instantaneously than anything else on earth. Something we'll never get used to.


She wasn't my daughter, yet I find that can't grieve enough for someone I didn't lose.

In honor of Jessie, a 15 year old student at my daughter's school who died unexpectedly last night.

Sunday, March 7, 2010

It's Not ALL About Me...or...My Husband Makes Jewelry!

Being and artist, I am so blessed to be married to a man who is also an artist. My husband is a multi-talented man. He is a photographer, writer, poet and has newly discovered a talent for jewelry making.

Here are his first creations.

The earrings are not pre-formed. He snipped and bent each piece of wire by hand.

The necklaces are from a pre-made metal choker. Hubby took pre-made pendants and embellished them with wire attaching them to the choker.

I am most proud (and impressed) with the bride and groom choker. This is completely his original design. He used a pre-formed choker to spiral around his choker base and then attached the charms. I've already put in my order for one! It will be fun looking for just the right charms for it!

I'm so proud of him! It's been interesting to collaborate on some things with him. The difficulty I find is, since I'm an artist too, I want to run with my idea instead of giving him creative freedom to do his project!