21 November 2013

Oh No, Not Again...



I was out shopping recently and found this lovely little cross stitch kit with a hummingbird on it. For the past year GrammaJ has been looking for a hummingbird photo or picture or figure to put on her wall. But we have not found anything yet. This kit was pretty much screaming “BUY ME!” That, even though I SWORE I would never do any needlework again.
This is not because I don’t like needlework. I love it. It is beautiful and I am reasonably skilled at making needlework projects. In fact, back in the day I used to teach needlework classes. I’ve done crochet, cross-stitch, crewel, candlewicking, needlepoint, plastic canvas and more. (I sold Creative Circle kits. Whatever happened to Creative Circle???) However, my eyesight is pretty much atrocious. So much so that, in order for me to cross-stitch or crochet I have to take off my glasses and hold the work about 3 inches from my eyeballs. Then I have to set the work aside to carefully read the pattern (also 3” from my eyeballs) THEN pick up the work again, work a few stitches. Then start all over.

Naturally, since these projects tend to be exhausting and discouraging for me to work on, I tend to balk at actually finishing them. This means my sewing and needle work projects usually get completed a year or two later than they’re supposed to. Don’t believe me? I started a simple printed cross-stitch for my Grandson’s birth. He got it for his first birthday instead.

So I swore off any more tedious needle crafts.

Until I saw this cute little project. And it was on sale. So I bought it.

AND I started working on it.

Yesterday, The BHE saw me working cross-stitch 3” from my eyeballs.

“What’re you doing?” he queried.

“Making a cross-stitch for Mom’s birthday.”

Awkward pause...

“Her BIRTHDAY?”

“Yup.” I replied, squinting at the aida cloth.

Another awkward pause...

“Will you finish it by then?”

I contemplate this and stop stitching for a moment. Her birthday is in early January. 

A REALLY awkward pause.

“Well,” I finally chime in. “I never said WHICH birthday.”



07 August 2013

Growing Old the Groovy Way

I've been thinking alot about aging lately.  This is not because I am oh-so-very old yet.  It is more because I am surrounded by the complications and difficulties of aging on a daily basis.  The girls and I have been visiting a local nursing home every Tuesday for years now - and that's certainly been enlightening.  Folks come, folks decline and then... Well. they either move out to a full scale nursing home (the one we visit is an "assisted living" center) or they die.  The girls and I actually got to sing one dear lady right out of this earthly life.

Then GrammaJ and The Folks moved up here from South Carolina and Florida, respectively, a few years ago.  The Folks, Grammy and Grampy, live in an apartment that is attached to our house and GrammaJ lives in a senior development nearby.

Observing and interacting with all these people who are in various stages of aging has had a huge impact on me.  Most of all, it's caused me to wonder what the BHE and I will be like when we're old.  Will we be Anxious?  Cranky?  Immobile?  Hopeless?  Deaf?  Pain-ridden?  Or will we be Optimistic?  Cheerful? Mobile? Colorful? Fun?  Or will we be some combbination of the former and the latter?

I know elderly adults in all three categories.

Well "they" always say we should set goals and strive for them, so I've decided to set some goals for my own groovy aging.

1.  I want to be as mobile as possible, so I am working now -WAY in advance - to keep my muscles strong and my balance good.  I walk and run and bike ride and lift weights and practice balancing.  And boy, do I ever go up and down stairs!  (Inefficiency is remarkably efficient at keeping one's weight down!)

2.  However, if I can't be as mobile as I'd like, then I'm going to have fun with my disability.  There will be sparkly, fun seasonal decorations on my cain, walker, wheelchair.  And I will have a bike horn with which I will make everyone crazy.

3.  I want my mind to stay sharp.  So I am working now -WAY in advance - to keep it so.  I read fiction and non-fiction, research anything and everything that interests me, do puzzles and play games and problem solve.  I take classes and participate in trainings.  I take on challenges to teach classes.

4.  Alas, there are mornings like this morning where I wonder how well all this is working.  I am currently drinking TWO cups of coffee simultaneously - don't ask.  (On the plus side, I DID recall how to spell "simultaneously".)  So, if my mind slips away, I want to enjoy being nuts.  I may even pretend to be nuts just to get a rise out of people!  I've noticed that most older people settle into very boring and uneventful days.  I plan to give 'em a thrill by putting lipstick on my eyebrows, wearing my bra over my shirt and carrying my blow dryer everywhere I go!  ;-)

5.  I want to maintain a cheerful and optimistic outlook.  I want to be one of those old ladies who smiles and says, "Oh, I can't complain.  God is good to me!"  The only way I'll be able to be like that then is to be like that now -WAY in advance.  I work every day to keep my eyes on God's goodness and blessings in my life.  I am confident that cultivating a thankful heart now will help me to live with a thankful heart then.

6.  I do not want to be an overmedicated zombie when I am a senior.  We've got one parent who refuses most meds (even though the doctors insist that she "needs" them) and is making it through just fine.  She also has decided to eschew any more invasive tests and refuses to see any more specialists.  Another parent is on so many meds that it takes 2 pages to list them all.  He has as many difficulties because of the meds themselves as he does from his actual physical difficulties.  I won't go into any details, but I will say that I plan to go the former route.  I will consider what my doctor suggests, pray about it and then make a decision.  I do NOT want to be a "Yes, Doctor" kinda gal!

7.  When I am elderly, I am darned if anyone is going to tell me what I can and can't eat.  I'm just sayin'...

8.  Lastly, I don't want my life focus to devolve (I just had to look up "devolve" to see if actually was a word!) into a spiral of self focus.  One of the greatest blessngs I have is seeing 2-3 folks in the nursing home who make it their business to care for others there.  They are quick to aid and encourage other residents and exhibit a real care for them that moves me.  GrammaJ has her moments, but overall I see in her a continual attempt to focus on the needs of others and to minister to them.  She bakes cookies for neighbors, even when she feels lousy.  She prepares "encouragement baskets" for people and then has me deliver them covertly.  She makes it a point to try to get grouchy cashiers to smile.

I want to be like that.  I want to keep ministering to and blessing people until the day I see my Lord face to face.

I want to grow old the Groovy way!

25 July 2013

To Dye or Not to Dye...


Many moons ago - when I had fewer children and more brain cells - I started to get the itch to dye my hair.  Not that anyone was complaining about my hair - my husband liked my few silver streaks and my eldest children weren't at all embarrassed to be seen with me - well, at least not because I had grey hair!
But there were other people.  And they had decided opinions about my hair.  The first was one of my best friends.  She was a solid 5 years older than me and didn't have a single grey hair on her head.  Not one.  Anywhere.   And she continually rubbed it in in a rather offhand way.  Instead of teasing me, she insisted that she envied me my bits of silver.  They were my "crown", my "glory" and she wished she had streaks of silver like I did.
Yeah, sure she did!
The second was a sweet, but unsuspecting offender who stopped to chat with me after church.  We were talking right along when suddenly he verbalized his latest brilliant observation, "You've gotten your hair highlighted, haven't you?"  Being a quick witted soul I shot back, "GOD highlighted my hair this way!"  But deep inside I was stung to the core.
I found myself starting to hover in hair care aisle at the local mart.  Next thing I knew I was reading the labels of hair-dye boxes and pondering the endless shades of brown available.  Finally, convinced that the possibilities were endless, I selected a "medium brown" dye and headed for home.  I followed the instructions carefully, dyed my hair and…
Nothing.  No one even noticed.  The only one who even seemed to know was my daughter because she'd been with me when I'd bought it.  My husband may or may not have noticed, but his only reaction was to caution me against trying any "wild" colors.  No one at church noticed.  The whole experiment was a complete bust.
But now my hair was dyed and that meant I was going to have to keep touching up the roots because, you know, hair grows.  So I convinced myself that the color made me look better and feel younger and I kept on dying it for a year or more.  Slowly I became  aware of other women around me my age and even younger who had -shock of all shocks - grey hair on their heads.  Some were all silvery grey and looked appealing.  Others had an attractive salt & pepper style.  They were all natural and all lovely.  And obviously they weren't wasting $8 and an hour of time every 6 weeks.  They were FREE; I wanted to be free too.
So I let the dye grow out.  I insisted that my grey was "silver" and that I was proud of being all natural.  My husband and my kids liked my hair color and that was good enough for me.
For a few years.
In the meantime I birthed two more children in my late 30's. Suddenly I was spending a great deal of time with other mothers of young children and those mothers were all only slightly older than my oldest daughter.  They were all young and pretty and energetic.  And none of them had grey hair.  I felt old and tired, toddlers not withstanding.  But I held firm.  I did not dye my hair.
My older 2 children moved out and started families of their own.  Now I was the mother of 2 young girls AND and grandmother.  The girls grew and we got involved in various activities.  There was our 4-H club where my co-leader often and repeatedly reminded me how she admired my willingness to bravely go grey.  There was our new church where all the ladies my age and even older seemed to have decidedly stylish colored hair: blond, red, and brown.   And then there was my mother.  She delighted in pointing out that she was "the mother of the grandmother" and started calling me her "grey-haired daughter".
I was weakening.
Then came the final straw.  I stopped at the bread store and the cashier asked if I wanted my discount.  
"What discount?"  
"Your senior discount!"
I was only 48.  Ouch!
Back to the dye for me.  This time I had more grey than brown.  So I selected a brand with "natural highlights" in a light shade of brown so the change wouldn't be too abrupt.  I duly read all the paperwork and set aside the time to do the job. 
My mother-in-law came over to bring me the newspaper. She didn't mention my hair.  My husband came home from work and didn't say a thing.  He didn't notice the next day either, even though I took the time to style it.  I went to my Mom's for lunch and shopping.  She used to be a hair dresser, but she had no comments whatsoever about my new color.  I went to 4-H fully expecting my co-leader to notice the dye job.  Nothing.
I guess I had succeeded in picking a subtle shade!  Sheesh!
My roots started to grow out and I knew it was time for a touch-up.  Should I stay with the same very subtle color or get more daring?  I went a shade darker.  I'd been wearing the new shade for 2 weeks before my mother-in-law finally stopped talking mid-sentence to peer closely at my head.  "Have you used a rinse or something?" she asked.  She was bit embarrassed when I told her I had started dying my hair 2 months before!  It was yet another week before my husband gave me an odd look and asked if I had died my hair.  He was even more embarrassed than his mother that he hadn't noticed.
The problem with a darker dye is, of course, that your roots start to show sooner, so I picked up some more dye.  Unfortunately, now that I'd found a color that I liked, the store didn't have it in stock.  
So I bought a different brand.  The color looked similar to what I had last used and it was a brand my mother had recommended, so I figured I'd try it.
A few days before Christmas my kids and husband were away.  It was the perfect time to dye my hair, wrap some presents and watch a movie.  
This particular brand of hair color had copious warnings about possible allergic reactions - more than I recalled seeing on the other brand - but I wasn't really worried.  I'd already done my hair twice.  If was allergic, I'd know it, right?  Well, the new brand was messier than the other. It smelled stronger and it made my head feel kind of tingly - I was pretty sure it not an "allergic" tingly, but my anxiety level was starting to go up.  I kept gauging my breathing and straining to see if "tingling" was turning to "burning".  Finally, the timer sounded and was able to rinse.  My hair felt quite brittle some fell out while I was rinsing, but at least I wasn't allergic to the dye.
I let my hair air dry as I popped in a movie and started wrapping gifts.  I was about an hour in to my work when I started feeling weird and restless.  Shortly later I was dizzy and hot which progressed to clammy and nauseated and suddenly very anxious.  I could still breathe alright, but - oh my goodness - I was having an allergic reaction!  I was home alone and started panicking.  I was about to dial 911 when I felt a strong impression that I should check the back of my neck.  I groped my way into the bathroom and grabbed a mirror.  Sure enough, there was still dye all over the back of my neck!  I grabbed a wet washcloth and scrubbed 'til I was raw.  Almost immediately, the wave of horrible feelings lifted and I felt fine.
I decided not to tell all my family about my life and death dye drama - especially after my husband came home, took one look at my hair and said, "I really don't like it that dark, Honey."  
He was right.  It was REALLY dark.  Ugh!  And now everyone noticed my hair.  "What did you do to your HAIR?" came the frequent question, always punctuated by raised eyebrows and the distinct impression that I'd gone a bit too far.
I even felt so castigated that I humbly asked my hairdresser if there was a way to rectify the color.  She pursed her lips and squinted thoughtfully, "Well, I suppose I could put in some highlights for $55."
Never mind.  I'll fix it myself.  So now I am - oh so slowly - working my way back to the first color so it won't be as noticeable when I go back to all natural.     
After all,  I've noticed most of my friends are letting their hair go a stylish silver…


13 July 2013

Taking Frugality to the Limit

The BHE and I have always been somewhat frugal.  Not that we don't mind spending a bit more for good quality, but once we own something, we will continue to own it until it's pretty much worn out.

My shoes are a good example.  I am no Imelda Markos!


I own exactly 9 pairs of shoes: 1 pr hiking boots, 2 pair dress shoes (one black, one blue), 1 pr sandals, 1 pr water shoes, 2 pr sneakers (one for day-to-day and one for running), 1 pr loafers, and 1 pr of specialty bike shoes (they fit the pedal clips),  The dress shoes and sandals I got at Salvation Army for $2-$3 each.  But I bought the functional shoes - for running/hiking/biking etc. new and while I did look for a deal, we didn't mind paying more for those.   I will wear them until duct tape is needed...

Jeans?  I have 3 pair now.  2 I bought new and they're both almost threadbear.  The other pair I got with the "new" tags on them at a yard sale for $2.

I admittedly have a skirt fetish, but most of them were bought on sale or at a thrift shop or were given to me.  Since I know I have a weakness for skirts, I have a rule that when a new one comes home, I give an old one away!

The BHE is the same way with his clothes (minus the skirt fetish!).  He keeps a minimum of good quality clothes and then wears them until they can be worn no more.

(Let's not talk about his underwear - please!)

We keep our furniture until it's either antique or firewood.  (Can I burn my sofa?  'Cause it's getting close!)

We keep our cars JUST until the point where they'll cost more to fix than we could sell them for.  And God has blessed us with the ability to save up and pay cash for the replacement.  (We've only had one auto loan in 33 years!)

I keep my glasses until I can't see anymore and we nurse our tools until they cease to function.  We have a nice stereo, but it's the same one we've had for  a bazillion years.  Ken did get the speakers refurbished (the woofers were blown), but that cost less than buying new ones.

And...we still have our very old and decrepit Macintosh.  We bought it in January of 2006.  And we have used it and used it and used it and USED it!

Except now, it ain't so easy to use!  A couple of years ago it started developing colorful vertical lines on the screen.  For those of you who are not Mac savvy, lemme 'splain something.  We cannot "just go buy another monitor".  Macs are all-in-one units.  The screen IS the computer.  So we have learned to live with the lines.  Currently there are over 80 of them.  And yes, they do make reading text quite challenging.  Fortunately we are adaptable.  Not as easy to adjust to is the 3" wide black vertical line that now appears during start-up.  Of course, that line goes away after you freak out for a few moments, but it's only a matter of (very little) time until it comes to stay.

Our browser has been outdated for years.  And we are no longer able to make any software updates.  Consequently, most web pages don't line up right.  Words overlap. I can't see all of the photos on some sites (including on FaceBook).  I just see part of the photo and have to guess what's on the rest.

 Scout gave the girls little ipod minis for Christmas a few years ago and they've not used them yet because our version of iTunes is too old and we can no longer update it.  Happily, we were able to use they gift cards to donwload some of their favorite songs, but just recently I've also lost the ability to do that.

Some sites take forever to load.  FOR.EV.ER.  The more graphics, the longer the load time.  On Facebook I have to wait and wait and WAIT to be able to scroll down the page.  Methinks God is teaching me patience along with the truth that I have better things to do with my time than wait 10 minutes for a cute cat picture to scroll down.

We can no longer see any online videos and we are rapidly running out of any sites where I can listen to a song.  This is a bummer because I learn new songs for the nursing home by listening to them online.  A few weeks ago one of the residents complained that we always sing the same songs...

I just tried to upload 20 photos to an online photo site.  To upload them and actually order prints (just prints, nothing fancy) took me an hour.

I think it's time.  We've gotten our money's worth and then some outta this ole beast.  We need a new computer.  In fact, one of the most oft heard phrases in our house of late has been, "Ooooo, when we get a NEW Mac we'll be able to......................."

Of course, we've been saying that for 2 years.  I wonder how much longer we can milk it?






01 January 2013

I Just Can't Do It...

Over all, I am a fairly healthy individual.  I read all those "Secrets to Healthy Living" magazine articles and I've pretty much concluded that - should the Lord tarry - I'm going to live to be at least 105.  Let's see; I sleep 9 hours pretty much every night.  I don't eat after 7 pm.  I don't smoke and I only drink the very occasional glass of wine.  I exercise regularly, I have a close family, a good marriage, wonderful friends and loads of social cnnections (both online AND in "real" life).  I'm not into meditation, but I do pray regularly and often.  I eat nuts every day and I use olive oil when I cook.  I drink my coffee and tea black and strong and organic.  I NEVER use margarine!  *shudder*  I but organic produce when I am able to and my weight is only slightly above what it should be - and I'm working on that now.

In fact, I spent the entire day today JUST eating veggies and cabbage soup.  I'm THAT dedicated to being healthy.

However, there are some things I just can't do.

"They" want me to eat fish several times a week.  Fish oil is fab for me and all that.  Problem is, I just don't like it.  At all.  Well, it's ok if you bread it and fry it, but then it's not so terribly good for you any more, is it?  I can tolerate it if someone serves it to me, but given the choice I will always opt for a different entree!  I shudder equally at haddock, tilapia, tuna, salmon, or pollock.  So I do take a fish oil supplement, but that is the end of my fishy concession.

"They" also insist that I should eat legumes more often.  This one is a different problem.  I actually LOVE beans and split peas.  But I can only consume them in one small portion perhaps once a week - IF I also take 1/2 a bottle of Beano with my small serving.  Eating more legumes or dosing myself with less Beano leaves me in agony with gas.  Yes it's true, I love Beans, but Beans hate me.

And lentils?  I'm not even sure that those are food!!!

Lastly, I don't care how many times "They" tell me that I need to drink green tea, I ain't gonna do it. I do not like hot.  I do not like it cold.  I do not like it plain.  I do not like it with "stuff" in it.  Green tea is nasty.  End of story!  I will stick to my black tea and black coffee.  Thank You.

And my resolution for this new year?  If I don't like it, I ain't gonna make myself eat it!




28 December 2012

A Bit of Whatever

HIho!  I am here because it's high time I started blogging again.  Unfortunately, I can't think of a single thing to say.  (See, all this time not writing is stunting my brain flow!)

And just what does a blogger do when they have nothing to say?  Well, this blogger goes all free-flow on you!  Anything that comes to mind!  Strap on your seat bealt and hold tight because here we GOOOooooooooooooooooooooooo!

Let Antipholus in.  That's my first thought.  The girls are going to be in a Shakespeare play in April and their play book arrived in the mail today.  They were reading over their parts and the afternoon was punctuated with, "Mom, how do you pronounce this word?"  "Mom, what does this mean?"  So I went online to look it up and found this wonderful website.  It has links to the standard version of "A Comedy of Errors", a link to a musical version thereof written in the late 1930's and a modern day version called "Bill and Ted's Comedy of Errors".    We spent WAY too much time there!

Christmas was nice, not considering all the guests who were hacking and sniffling.  Of the nine of us present (ten if you count Rex the doggie), five were ill.  We had a great time, but please take note:  Laughing increases the coughing.

We had beef enchiladas and chicken fajitas with lots of fixin's and side dishes.  It was majorly yummy! The girls made all the desserts at GrammaJ's house last week.  They cranked out 3 pies, 1 awesome cake, gingerbread, and cream cheese mints.  Then's the BHE's cousin made us some homemade Need 'ems.  So. GOOD!

I really need to lose weight.  You know, the same 15 pounds that I've been trying to lose since Silly-Head was born.   I'll get on that soon.  Right after all the cake and pie and candy is gone.  *wink*  Happily, I have been working out regularly, so it's just the eating that needs to be modified.  Again.  As usual.

I hate dieting!  *sigh*

I am not sick.  This is a blessing, but I am rather bummed because I am not sleeping well.  Silly-Head coughs alot at night and my Mommy radar throws me into high alert.  Then I can't get back to sleep.  Until last night.  Once Silly-Head told me that her coughing does not keep her up, and that it aggravates her that I come in and do wake her up to give her medicine, I threw in the towel..  No more Mommy compassion from me.  Last night I just tuned her out and slept beautifully.  Sometimes it pays to be a mean mommy!

(Of course, she knows she can wake me up if she needs me!)

I'm doing GrammaJ's laundry for her today because she has the flu.  Which she got from us.  I can hear her voice even though she is ten miles away, "Make sure you take the clothes out of the dryer while they're still slightly damp so they won't wrinkle."  OK, GrammaJ.  OK.

The goats are doing well, though I haven't managed to get them to someone who has a buck to get them bred.  Part of me wishes we had bucks here.  Part of me thinks that part of me is NUTS because bucks are stinky and noisy.

Then again, a buck named "Antipholus" would be pretty groovy.

Hopefully we'll get Annika bred in the next week or two.  It may be too late for Mindy.  Nubians only breed seasonally and her "season" is pretty much over for this year.  Bummer.

On the plus side, we'll be getting a FREE show quality baby LaMancha doe next spring from a breeder who wants to encourage the girls to continue showing for 4-H.  We are thrilled and much time has been spent trying to select a name for her.  Naturally we'll have to actually see her before we can make a final selection.

Man, I'm tired.  I haven't been sick at all, but the BHE has a theory that I am a silent flu carrier because I'm almost as tired as all the sick people are.  Though we might be able to chalk that up to not sleeping...

On that note, I shall sign off for now.  Here's hoping I shall write again VERY SOON.  I'm truly hoping to make 2013 a year of writing - both here and on my novels.  It's time to FINISH WHAT I START.











29 August 2012

EVERY Day is a School Day!

Folks keep asking me the inevitable, "So, when are you starting school with the girls?"

Starting?  We've never stopped.  Oh there has been the inevitable lag in book work (though they have been doing a math lesson or two a week all summer), but learning?  There's been oodles and oodles of that.

Girly-Girl has written four screen plays and is currently working on her fifth - all on hr own time.  She is also begging me to purchase a High School curriculum that promises to help her "write a complete adventure novel in a year".  She's only starting 7th grade!  She also spent her first time working an entire week as a drama team member for a week of Vacation Bible School.

Silly-Head has more or less taken over farm operations here.  She has STRONG opinions about goat care and breeding and milking.  She adores the goats and does a fabulous job of working with them.  It's been amazing to watch her work with the kids (we had triplet bucklings) and care for the does.  She's the first one to jump in to help when we need to administer medication, give shots, trim hooves, neuter or bathe the goats.  She is responsible, trustworthy, observant, compassionate, hardworking and self-motivated.

I'll take that over perfect grammar any day!

And there's more.  They've both been reading almost daily, listening to Adventures in Odyssey, discussing Biblical truths, making all manner of arts and crafts, learning to sew, and keeping up with their piano practice.

They've made and shown items in several fairs, worked together to film and edit the first of Girly-Girl's plays with their 4-H club (the movie is to be shown at the county 4-H end-of-year banquet!).  They've shown their does at 2 fairs and the girls and I all participated in a 2 day Civil War reenactment nearby.  This involved a whole lot of hand sewing and problem solving.  They learned several period games and crafts and taught them to children who attended the event.  They also sold lemonade and cake and had to make change.

They've discovered Roy Rogers, Bonanza, Gilligan's Island, and the Cosby Show.  They've camped and hiked and learned to have a good time even in the midst of hordes of mosquitoes.  They've worked hard in 4-H at growing in leadership skills.  They've cleaned house, cooked, and done laundry.  They've spent HOURS in the basement acting out their favorite stories and inventing costumes. 

In short, they've learned more this summer than they ever would have learned looking at textbooks.

Now I'm not saying this in order to brag.  I think my girls are bright, but they're not geniuses or prodigies.  They are, however, blooming educationally, morally, and physically by just living!  I think most children would do the same given the similar opportunities.

We love homeschooling!

And now September fast approaches.  School buses have begun their daily runs.  Moms have done all the back-to-school shopping.  People are getting back to their daily-grind schedules.  But we are not.  School for the next month shall be another adventure.

We are packing up the car and heading cross country - quite literally from ocean to ocean.  No movies, no computers, and probably very little air conditioning.  Just the Groovys and their camping gear, a AAA Triptick and a National Parks Pass.

It's going to be EPIC.  And I betcha we just might learn a thing or two!


27 August 2012

Egad, They've Redecorated!

Wow, Blogger really done some major renovations since I was here last May.  They've painted the rooms, laid new flooring and rearranged all the furniture.  And are those new curtains?  I hardly recognize the place!

No promises, but I do hope to begin writing here more again

16 March 2012

Ya Know What I Did Last Summer?




I RODE THE WHOLE, ENTIRE (as in, ALL of it!) TREK ACROSS MAINE! That was 180 miles from the mountains to the sea.

Fortunately, they gave all of us (over 2,000 of us) 3 days to do it all in.

See that pic up above? I was pretty much sobbing with joy there. You see, this was my FIFTH Trek, but my first finish. All the other times something happened to put me out of the ride.

But now that I've finished it once, I am ready to do it again.

I can't do it without YOU, though. In order to ride, the BHE and I must raise $500 each for the American Lung Association. If you'd like to help, just click one of the donation links in my side bar.

I and my asthmatic lungs thank you!!!!!

15 March 2012

Hiho! Hiho! I'm Here to Blog, You Know....

I really would like to get back to blogging regularly. So here I am. Time to stop thinking about it and talking about it. Time to do it.

Just do it.

So here I am. You know, writing and all.

(Deep breath)

Dang, I think I've forgotten how to write. That's not good. No, really. You see there are a few people out there who are under the impression that I know how to write, that I AM a writer. In fact, one of them contacted me last week. She and her husband head a child aid missionary organization. They travel all over the world meeting poor children and their families. Then they come back to Maine and work double time finding people to sponsor those children.

This lady has stories - great stories - and she wants to write them. Trouble is, she's a rather mediocre writer (self-proclaimed). So she's asked me to help her. I'll be reading, editing, reformulating - basically torturing her with my ready red pen of correction. But how can I wield said pen with any authority if I'm not writing?

Facebook has stunted my thoughts into short blurbs of pithiness. Now, when faced with the task of writing an actual paragraph, I go blank!

So it's time to raise the bar. I need to write. I need to write often. I need to write well. I need to remember the finer points of communicating so that when it is time to help my friend I can feel confident that I am doing my best for her.

This will be happening here on this blog and on my cycling blog. Maybe it will even be happening on my novel(s).

Oh please let it be happening on my novels!

Keep your eyes open. Groovy is BACK!