True Enough


Yep.



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Hump Day Hodgepodge

Well, it’s Wednesday again, so it must be time for Joyce’s Wednesday Hodgepodge! She offered some cool questions this week and my answers are below.














1. It is officially fall here in North America...I realize not everyone who participates in the Hodgepodge lives in North America but if you do, what's your favorite memory of Summer 2011? If you're not in North America, what's your favorite memory of the season just ending on your side of the world?

This summer was terrific. Best memory? Synchronized swimming and water ballet with the grands in the backyard pool. And nope, no video evidence exists. I’m fun, but I’m no fool. ;O)


2. Your favorite nut? You know I mean the edible kind, right?

I love pecans. Plain, salted, baked into cookies, or cinnamon/sugar coated. All sorts of yummy.


3. What activity puts your sense of balance to the test?

I don’t like to spin around in circles—never have. Even as a kid, I didn’t quite get how other kids seemed to think it was fun to spin themselves dizzy. When my brother wanted to tick me off, he’d either tickle me or pick me up and spin me around—and both worked really well. Of course, me standing in his bedroom threshold gawking at him, my toes placed carefully so as to be officially still in the hallway and not in his room, probably did nothing to provoke him. ;O)


4. How would you describe your sense of humor?

Warped.


5. September 28th is National Ask a Stupid Question Day...what's your stupid question?

What if all that we’ve been taught about the need to conserve water and power is just a huge practical joke being played on the masses by nerdy scientist types who are getting payback for being stuffed into their lockers by football players in high school and at this very moment, they’re in their big, drafty houses with all of the lights on, the air conditioning blasting, brushing their teeth with the water running, and laughing their asses off?


6. Roller skates~hula hoop~jump rope...which activity would you most enjoy? Yes, you have to choose.

Not roller skates. Hula-hoop or jump rope? Oh, the pressure, the pressure. I’ll take hula-hoop. No! Jump rope. No! Hula-hoop. Final answer.


7. What's your most sentimental possession?

Without question, it’s the blanket that my mom crocheted for me when I was a kid. I chose the colors and the pattern (very little-girl-in-the-70’s chic). I remember the growing stack of pieces as she worked on it and still remember the first time I got to see the finished product.

The blanket isn’t packed away, but instead gets used regularly. If I’m under the weather, I’m also under that blanket and when I get the chance to sneak in a Sunday afternoon nap, that’s the blanket I choose. My kids and grandkids have all snuggled up with it too, so a little bit of my mom’s love brings comfort to all of us, even all these years later.


8. Insert your own random thought here.

I kind of want my blankie now.



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That's the blanket, above. It's close to 40 years old, gets used all the time, and still looks pretty good. :O)

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Seeking Truth

While our court system is certainly flawed, some of its basic guidelines are spot-on. For instance, you can’t convict somebody on hearsay. If you are injured by someone, you have the right to accuse them and speak your piece. If you personally see someone injure someone else, you can take the witness stand and give what will be allowed as credible testimony. But if a friend tells you that they’ve been victimized outside of your eye or earshot, the Prosecutor can’t use your input to gain a conviction. Why?

That’s simple. You really don’t know what happened. You don’t. You might love your friend and trust their word, but in reality, you don’t actually know what transpired.

Remember that experiment from elementary school? The teacher whispered a few sentences to the person in the first desk, who was instructed to then repeat what they’d heard to the student in the next one. Student #2 then cupped his hand around the ear of the next child and passed the information along. This continued until the sentences had made their way all around the room, at which time the teacher asked the last student to stand and say aloud what they’d just been told. The spoken sentences were never the same as the original ones, were they?

There’s a good reason why teachers like to utilize that simple, yet profound lesson. It reminds us that we need to be careful about making assumptions based on what we hear. Even well-meaning people with nothing to gain by distorting the truth can relay inaccurate information.

Now let’s consider what might happen with those who would benefit if the story was turned around a bit. Just a little, even. That changes everything, right?

Trust yourself. Trust that little voice within that tells you when what you’re being told doesn’t seem to line up with what you’ve personally seen, heard, and felt. If you choose to judge, at least do so based on your own experiences, personal observations, and gut instincts, not those of anyone else.

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I’ll leave you with the following quote, which I’ve always liked:

“Do not believe in anything simply because you have heard it. Do not believe in anything simply because it is spoken and rumored by many. Do not believe in anything simply because it is found written in your religious books. Do not believe in anything merely on the authority of your teachers and elders. Do not believe in traditions because they have been handed down for many generations. But after observation and analysis, when you find that anything agrees with reason and is conducive to the good and benefit of one and all, then accept it and live up to it.” ~ Buddha


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Written for this week’s GBE topic: Judgment.

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Wishing the Wish

When my firstborn was tiny, I held her endlessly, happy just to watch her sleep. I remember wishing that she could stay that size forever. Within a few months, she’d grown bright and giggly and I was sure that life couldn’t possibly get any better. When we found out that we were expecting again, I realized that it not only could, but had.

My desire to freeze time and live forever in one fabulous stage of my children’s lives happened repeatedly, from infancy right through their teenage years (with maybe the teeniest gap during the first year or so of each of my daughters’ adolescence when they were riding crazy hormonal roller coasters and I had no burning desire to stay in that mode for all eternity). My wish never came true, of course, and one by one, they grew up and out.

When our firstborn went off to college, I sobbed just as I had on her first day of school many years before. Proud, yet sad. Torn. Wanting again to freeze time before she pulled away, her old car filled to the gills with boxes of stuff.

Fast forward a dozen years or so and the kids are all grown, married, and making the most incredible babies. I held each of my newborn grandchildren, cried happy tears, and yes, again wished to stay right in those magical moments. As they’ve learned and grown, I’ve marveled at just what perfect little human beings they are. They’re brilliant and beautiful (No really, that’s not just Grammy-talk. They’re fabulous!), funny and fun, well-loved and incredibly loving. They’re all lit up inside and its contagious—being around them lights me up, too.

Just like their parents before them, the grands are changing. Every day, they grow and learn something new, and every day that I spend with them, a little part of me wishes the wish. But I realized something recently: it’s not that I really want them to stay the same; I don't actually want to freeze time and live all of my days in just one beautiful moment. There are lots of beautiful moments to be had. What I want is for that feeling to remain. I want to be filled with awe, overwhelmed with gratitude, and charmed by their very presence. That’s the part that I never want to change. And as I look at my own children, all grown up with not a smidgen of baby left in them, I’m awed, grateful, and charmed, so no worries. Some things really never change.



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The above photo was taken a few minutes after we brought our newborn twins home from the hospital.

Oh, and this post was written for this week’s topic at The Writers’ Post: Changes.

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GBE 2: Blog On -- Week #19: “Judgment”


GBE 2: Blog On -- Week #19: “Judgment”














As always, the guidelines are simple. Blog on this week’s prompt in any way you see fit. Once you’ve posted to wherever you normally blog, drop the URL to your post in the comment section below.

REMINDER: use the URL to your entry for this week’s specific topic post, NOT to your blog’s home page!

If you haven’t already done so, you are welcome to join GBE 2 at its main headquarters over on Facebook (We’re nearing 200 active members and we’re still growing!). Just visit GBE 2’s Facebook page and request to join the group. Everyone is welcome, so tell your friends! :O)

For those of you who use Twitter, the hashtag for the group's posts is #GBE2, and we can increase readership if we all tweet early and tweet often. ;O)

That’s it! Easy-breezy-lemon-squeezy!

You have until Saturday (10-1-11) to post your blog and leave your link…

Again, this week, our prompt is: JUDGMENT

Ready. Set. Blog!

Happy blogging!
Beth



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To Have and To Hold


We sat in his office, us in the matching side-by-side chairs and him on the business side of the big mahogany desk. His smile was warm, genuine, and easy. We couldn’t have wiped the grins off our faces if we’d tried. We talked about the specifics and I had just one request: “We’re gonna need to take out the word ‘obey.’ I want to mean every single thing I say and I intend to honor my vows for the rest of my life. I’m not much of an ‘obey’ kind of girl.”

They both laughed and he scratched out ‘obey.’ “Anything else?”


I thought for a minute. “Can we keep obey is his vows?” I asked, tilting my head toward the hubs-to-be.

They laughed again. “’Fraid not,” he said, setting his pen down on the desk. “Nice try, though.”

He leaned back in his chair and looked at the two of us. “I'd like to offer you one piece of advice,” he said. “Just one.”

We nodded in unison, and he continued. “When you have a fight, when you are so angry that you rethink everything you’ve ever felt for or thought about the other, talk. To each other. Don’t gripe to your friends or your parents; don’t badmouth the very person you’ve vowed to cherish for the rest of your life. When you’re angry at your spouse, talk to your spouse. Long after you’ve worked it out and forgiven one another, the stuff you’ve told those who love you about your spouse will stick, and the more you do it, the deeper their uneasiness will grow. You can unwittingly make people dislike the person you love most, and that’s not fair to anyone. Little stuff adds up when you feed someone a steady diet of it. So when you’re angry—and you will sometimes be—talk to each other. Remember where your loyalties lie.”

That was three decades ago. The advice is every bit as sound today as it was then, when we were fresh-faced and starry-eyed, holding hands and unable to imagine that we’d ever really need to heed it.

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This week’s GBE topic is Loyalty. Come blog with us!

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Revealed!

Well, talk about perfect timing! This week’s BFF writing inspiration is "Do You Want to Know a Secret?"

So, do you?















You do?! Good, because I’m just itching to reveal one! For a little while now, four great friends and I have been working on a secret project that we’re finally ready to unveil.

The five of us have all been involved in leading blogging groups, and though we each have some members who belong only to our individual group, many of the participants are happily blogging each week with more than one of the groups. So…an idea was born!

From today on out, you can blog your way through the week from one home base. The individual groups still exist exactly where they’ve always been, but starting today, you can also access ALL of them right here, at One Stop Blog World.

How cool is that?

Here’s what we’ve got, all in one handy-dandy location, for your blogging pleasure:


So please come on by, browse the site a bit, and let us know what you think. We’ve tried to make OSBW welcoming and very user-friendly. Each day has its own tab for quick access to the individual group pages, each group’s guidelines are clearly detailed (mostly, we all just require grown-up, kind behavior), and we’ve also posted an ”About the Hosts” page, where you can get to know each of us.

Tracie, Kathy, Jenn, Darlene, and I hope that you’ll visit us at our new site. We want you to feel at home there and would love for you to consider it your group-blogging home base—your One Stop Blog World!



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GBE 2: Blog On -- Week #18: “Loyalty”


GBE 2: Blog On -- Week #18: “Loyalty”













As always, the guidelines are simple. Blog on this week’s prompt in any way you see fit. Once you’ve posted to wherever you normally blog, drop the URL to your post into a comment, below.

REMINDER: use the URL to your entry for this week’s specific topic post, NOT to your blog’s home page!

If you haven’t already done so, you are welcome to join GBE 2 at its main headquarters over on Facebook (We’re nearing 200 active members and we’re still growing!). Just visit GBE 2’s Facebook page and request to join the group. Everyone is welcome, so tell your friends! :O)

For those of you who use Twitter, the hashtag for the group's posts is #GBE2, and we can increase readership if we all tweet early and tweet often. ;O)

That’s it! Easy-breezy-lemon-squeezy!

You have until Saturday (9-24-11) to post your blog and leave your link…

Again, this week, our prompt is: LOYALTY

Ready. Set. Blog!

Happy blogging!
Beth


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365 Brand New Days

This week, GBEers are tackling the topic: One Year Ago. I suppose I could look back to last September and come up with a bunch of stuff that a whole year later, still remains on my Git-R-Done list, but that sounds like the recipe for beat-yourself-up fest, and I don’t really want to buy a ticket to that. So instead, I’m unofficially post-dating this entry by exactly one year so that I can talk about right now and what I’ll be reminiscing about 365 brand new days from now. Tricky, eh?


Okie-dokie, the date is September 14, 2012 (why am I fighting the urge to say ‘stardate?’). One year ago, way back in 2011, I thought long and hard (okay, it was a few minutes, but they were a very powerful few minutes) about where I hoped to be in my life by the following year. Although this year has flown by (really, really quickly, if you know what I mean), I’m pleased to say that all of the things on my September, 2011 Goals List have been accomplished and I’m ready to embark on another fabulous year. Here’s what happened between September 14, 2011 and September 14, 2012.

  • We're living happily out in the boondocks now. The trees whisper me awake each morning and gentle winds sing me to sleep every starry night. My days are busy and by nightfall I’m tired, but it’s a wonderful kind of tired.
  • I’ve returned to my pre-hormone-madness weight. I haven't gone on any particular diet, but instead I simply eat whatever my body calls for and I play with gusto. I feel fabulous.
  • I’ve begun sketching again and have been enjoying it so much that I can’t remember why I ever gave it up.
  • My first book of short stories came out in April and I had the best time doing readings at the local library and Mom & Pop book store. The second, Homecoming, is set to release right before Thanksgiving.
  • Our newest granddaughter is a joy. She’s got bright, rosy cheeks, the most delicious plump thighs, her mama’s eyes, and her daddy’s sweet smile. She melts my heart every time I see her.
  • All of the grands are doing wonderfully and I’m so glad that we still get to spend lots of time together, even though we aren’t all in the same town any more. Weekends are grandilicious and we spent oodles of time spoiling all of them over the summer. Of course, we see the two who live right near us every day, and soon, they’ll be welcoming a new brother or sister into the family.
  • The hubs has been pain-free ever since the move. There’s something to be said for living on pace with our natural rhythms rather than being a slave to the alarm clock. He hasn’t felt this good since he was twenty-five.
  • I celebrated my 50th birthday in December. I remember freaking out about turning 30, which seems so silly now. I’m more me now than I’ve ever been and I wouldn’t turn back time for anything in the world.
  • RSVPs have been coming in for the big Halloween costume bash that we’re having next month and I’m thrilled that my online besties will all be in attendance. We’re gonna have a blast!


It’s been a wonderful year, filled with love, laughter, and magnificent growth. Life is good—very, very good.



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How about you? What’s happened to you between September 14, 2011 and September 14, 2012?

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GBE 2: Blog On -- Week #17: “One Year Ago”



GBE 2: Blog On -- Week #17: “One Year Ago”












As always, the guidelines are simple. Blog on this week’s prompt in any way you see fit. Once you’ve posted to wherever you normally blog, drop the URL to your post into the linky tool below.

**NOTE** The Linky Tools folks are having trouble with their database. I'll add it in once they've corrected the problem, so for now, please just leave a link to your post as a comment.

REMINDER: use the URL to your entry for this week’s specific topic post, NOT to your blog’s home page!

If you haven’t already done so, you are welcome to join GBE 2 at its main headquarters over on Facebook (We’re nearing 200 active members and we’re still growing!). Just visit GBE 2’s Facebook page and request to join the group. Everyone is welcome, so tell your friends! :O)

For those of you who use Twitter, the hashtag for the group's posts is #GBE2, and we can increase readership if we all tweet early and tweet often. ;O)

That’s it! Easy-breezy-lemon-squeezy!

You have until Saturday (9-17-11) to post your blog and leave your link…

Again, this week, our prompt is: ONE YEAR AGO

Ready. Set. Blog!

Happy blogging!
Beth


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Wednes-dilly-icious


It's that time again. Joyce has posted this week's Wednesday Hodgepodge questions. Thanks, Joyce, for giving me another opportunity to talk about myself share my point of view. :O)









1. What is one piece of advice you would give a 'just turning' 21- year old adult?


It’s your path, so walk it any way that you see fit. Listen to and honor the voice within, and trust yourself. You’ll do just fine.


2. Besides cooler weather (or warmer weather, depending on your hemisphere) what is one thing you are looking forward to this fall?

Grandbaby #6 is on the way and though we won’t actually get to meet until sometime around Valentine’s Day, the big gender announcement should be in early October. I’m hoping for a girl for two reasons: first, our son and his wife already have a son and second, I would lovity-love-love to see my big, tough son wrapped around the finger of a sweet little girl.

*think pink*


3. What sound lulls you to sleep?

I love to drift off in our cool, quiet, cave-dark room, but I can (and often do) conk out on the living room sofa just feet from the surround sound as it blasts whatever shoot ‘em up movie the hubs has chosen. With the exception of a few hellish years in my mid-forties when my hormones held meetings and plotted to drive me mad with hot flashes and insomnia, I’ve always been a rock-star sleeper.


4. September is National Preparedness Month...does your family have an emergency 'kit' and/or disaster plan in place?

Nope. We’re fly by the seat of our pants folks. That’s how we roll.


5. How has your blog changed since you started blogging? Or has it?

I’ve only had this blog since spring, and other than getting more filled up with posts & stuff, it’s pretty much as it was in the beginning (…is now and ever shall be, world without end. Amen.)

Please excuse me. I just flashed back to a pew long ago and far away. I’m back now. My bloggity-blog will be getting a make-over in the near future, but for now, it’s wearing its same face.


6. What's something you've recently learned to do on the computer?

I helped set up (and by ‘helped,’ I mean poked around and tried not to screw anything up beyond repair) a new site with four friends. We’ll be unveiling very soon, so stay tuned! :O)


7. Is a picture worth a thousand words? Elaborate.

My 5th grade school picture is worth exactly two: holy crapanoly. Until recently when I unearthed a stash of them, I was certain that all copies had been destroyed. Nope, like zombies, Elisabeth Hasselbeck, and other unholy things, photographic evidence of me in my first pair of glasses (octagon shaped!) and a red velour jacket lives on. Be afraid. Be very afraid.


8. Insert your own random thought here.

I’m waiting (not so patiently) for the FedEx guy to bring my new smart phone, which I fear may be a whole lot smarter than I am.


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How about you? Care to take on any of the above questions?

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Liebster Liebster Bo Biebster

Stormblogger has bestowed upon me the Liebster Award, and I am happy to accept. Thanks a bunch, Stormblogger!



You may wonder what the Liebster Award represents. Translated from German, (thank you, Google Translate!) ‘liebster’ means ‘dearest,’ so who wouldn’t be delighted to get such a sweet acknowledgement?

There are, of course, some bloggity-award rules. They are as follows:

* The Liebster Award should be spread to five favorite blogs/bloggers.
* Awardees should thank and link back to the sender.
* To qualify, recipients must currently have fewer than 200 followers.


Five very well-deserving blogs/bloggers and my choices for the Liebster Award are:

  1. Joyce over at From This Side of the Pond, who offers thoughtful questions each week on her Wednesday Hodgepodge posts.
  2. Christina, who pens Solitary Mama and provides an honest and humorous look at life with an heir.
  3. Amy, who is raising two extraordinary boys in her own extraordinary way, and gives us glimpses of their lives From the Mom Cave.
  4. Autumn, who writes Nowhere & Everywhere and in just a few short months will be an absolutely fabulous mommy.
  5. Robin, who, as The Frizzy Hooker, never fails to make me smile and is not quite right in a really wonderful sort of way.

That’s it, Liebster Bo Biebsters. Pass it on!



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Slacker, um, Monday

I think I’m getting really good at this slacker thing. Not to brag, but my Slacker Saturday blogs are supposed to post on, you know, Saturdays (like that logic?), and this one is being released on a Monday, two full slackerrific days late. Top that, slacker wannabes!

Anyway, for this week’s easy-breezy-lemon-squeezy low effort post I thought I’d steal other people’s words, rather than trying to come up with any of my own. That’s pure slacker gold, baby!

I write (…and people pay me to do it! I know, right?!), but since I’m kind of a sissy and am fond of living indoors and eating every day, I also have a job with a nice, steady income. Enter, the daycare. For oodles of years, I’ve run a small daycare, so I get to spend my days playing games, singing, dancing, and hanging out with little kids (…and people pay me to do it! I know, right?!).

Kids provide rich fodder for storytellers (and slackers), and through the years, the kids that have come through the daycare doors have said some truly unforgettable things. I thought I’d share a few of my favorites with you.

Ready, Freddy?


One day, a little girl with beautiful long hair was fiddling with her ponytail when she noticed something. “My hair has lots of different colors in it!” she said, turning it back and forth to show me.

I told her that everyone’s hair has more than one color, but she looked skeptical. I assured her that it was the truth, then she leaned in close to examine my noggin and without even a trace of sarcasm, said, “You mean like yours is gray on the top and brown on the bottom?”

Um, yeah, just like that.


There have been several occasions when kids have said things that make their parents laugh or cringe, or sometimes both. One little boy told me that the day before, he had walked into the kitchen at his house and to find his dad with his hands up inside his mom’s shirt. When the little guy saw them, the dad told him that he was “looking for something.”

Yep, I’ll just bet he was.


A little girl of four once casually mentioned during lunch that she knew what sex was. Not wanting to pursue that particular conversation, I kind of brushed off the comment with a noncommittal uh-huh. Unwilling to drop it, she continued, “My parents ‘do’ sex. They wait until they think I’m asleep, but I’m not.”

Hehehehe. Gotta love kids.


There are tons more, but for now, just one last tidbit. A little guy told me one day that he was ‘half hillbilly,’ When I chuckled, he explained that his dad had told him that he was a hillbilly and that the boy’s mom was a kind-hearted soul, so that made him, their son, half hillbilly and half kind-hearted soul.

I liked that one so much that I used it as the jumping-off point for a column that week. I love those kids. :O)



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Hey! I just realized that not only was this post easy and slackeriffic, but since it was about kids, it also qualifies for this week’s GBE topic! This week, GBE bloggers had a choice of writing about “Children” or “Parents.”

Checkity-check-check! I am the leader of the Slacker Nation! ;O)

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GBE 2: Blog On -- Week #16: Writer’s Choice: “CHILDREN” or “PARENT”

GBE 2: Blog On -- Week #16: Writer’s Choice: “CHILDREN” or “PARENT”

This week, we have two word prompts. You can blog about one, both, or combine the two.











As always, the guidelines are simple. Blog on this week’s prompt in any way you see fit. Once you’ve posted to wherever you normally blog, drop the URL to your post into the linky tool below.

REMINDER: use the URL to your entry for this week’s specific topic post, NOT to your blog’s home page!

If you haven’t already done so, you are welcome to join GBE 2 at its main headquarters over on Facebook (We currently have 185 active members and we’re still growing!). Just visit GBE 2’s Facebook page and request to join the group. Everyone is welcome, so tell your friends! :O)

For those of you who use Twitter, the hashtag for the group's posts is #GBE2, and we can increase readership if we all tweet early and tweet often. ;O)

That’s it! Easy-breezy-lemon-squeezy!

You have until Saturday (9-10-11) to post your blog and leave your link…

Again, this week, our prompt is: CHILDREN or PARENT

Ready. Set. Blog!

Happy blogging!
Beth




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