Gone in Sixty Seconds

August 16th, 2014
Stop sign

Road to Nowhere

It isn’t a sabbatical.  It isn’t quitting.  It isn’t taking time off.

What it is?  I don’t know.  All I know is that this isn’t fun anymore.

Busy Times Square

Busy Times Square

Life is too short and too busy to do something that doesn’t bring you enjoyment so I’m outta here.

It may be permanently and it may not.  I have no idea.  I just know I don’t want to write about my love affair with Alpha Hubby and I don’t wanna talk about the cows or anything else, for that matter.

I am going to live it.

I have some of this to do

Josh Sandals

Playing In the Pool

And this:

Once upon a time

Time to Finish the Books

And some of this:

Relaxing tea time

Relaxing

And this:

tea time with God

Tea and Time With God

And for sure this:

daydream

Daydreaming

I will be doing a lot of this:

Exercising

Exercising

This:

cookies tempt

Making right food choices

and doing plenty of this:

water with lemon

Drinking My Lemon Water

And this:

wolf and red

Hanging with Alpha Hubby

Doing this:

dancing children

Dancing with Alpha Hubby

And this:

Pool

Swimming with Alpha Hubby

And most of all:

couple in bed

None of your bee's wax

The older posts will be available AFTER I fix the mess up – AGAIN.

Thank you for sharing your lives with me and for those who commented, I love you guys and appreciate the support you gave me over the years.

How bad is YOUR bad? Let it go.

August 12th, 2014

I’m going to change things up a wee bit today.  Several things happened recently that filled me with such gratitude, love, and just an all ’round joy at being alive, living in this time, and living the life I am living.  I plan to do this every once in a while from now on.  It is deeper than my other posts.  Some will agree with it.  Some won’t.  Doesn’t matter.  This is me.

Except for “Hallelujah” the first few songs on the player are by Clint Brown, pastor of Judah Church in Florida.  Clint has written and recorded thousands of praise and worship songs over the years.  He has an unbelievably powerful voice and most of his music is very contemporary, jazzy, bluesy, fonk, whatever.  Not what might be considered normal churchy music.  If you want a worship CD that will fill your house with peace, order his “In His Presence 2” CD.  Not 1, two (2).

Those who enjoy this type music, enjoy.  The rest of you can just pause the player!

***********

Years ago while struggling with some issues and dealing with letting go, I came across this story about Marie Balter.  It struck me so powerfully that it changed my attitude and my life.  This post comes from several sources.

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Marie Balter memorial

Marie Balter Memorial
Click to enlarge and read

In 1935 when Marie Balter was a 5-year-old named Pat, her unmarried alcoholic mother turned her (though not her older and younger sisters) over to a foster home unknowingly run by a sadistic couple.  The couple adopted Pat and changed her name to Marie.  They were physically and emotionally abusive toward her.  She would be locked in a dim cellar, and often tortured.

At 14 she was removed, at her own request and on the recommendation of a social worker, to St. Therese’s Home for Girls, and she lived for much of the next couple of decades in one institution after another: a home for indigent women, the psychiatric ward of a general hospital, finally a State Hospital.

Marie developed severe anxiety (panic disorder) and psychotic depression early in her life.  At the age of seventeen she was paralyzed from depression to the point it caused muscle spasms, choking, hyperventilation, and asthma attacks so intense she developed hallucinations.  She was institutionalized in 1947 and was misdiagnosed as having schizophrenia.

She was placed on near lethal doses of an experimental anti-psychotic drug, which only served to exacerbate her mental and emotional condition.  At one time she weighed only eighty-eight pounds.  She was locked away and written off as a hopeless case.

For eight years she was shuttled from one ward to another, depending on the severity of her symptoms.  She endured shock treatments.  At the very depth of her psychosis, she states that “From a curled-up position of catatonic silence on her hospital bed, she could still see herself:  I looked at myself and said, ‘No more. I can’t go on this way anymore if I ever want to get out of here, if I ever want to get better.’”

She relied on her deep faith in God and the positive relationships she made with some of the staff members and patients at the state hospital. There was a doctor at the hospital who saw potential in her and would not give up.  Her recovery was painful and gradual, as she overcame a despair that often left her unable to eat or move. She contemplated suicide more than once.

After more than thirty-two years of hell on earth, Marie Balter was released into the world… to begin her real life.

With the support of a widening circle of friends, Balter gradually built herself a productive and satisfying life, graduating from college and marrying a man she had worked with in the rehabilitation workshop whom she called the love of her life.  Even cancer of the bladder and later her husband’s early death could not overwhelm her: “This time,” she reported, “I survive.”

Did she spend her freedom holding a grudge or sue the hospital for misdiagnosing her problem?  Focus on what her mother did to her?  The abusive foster parents?  Be mad at God?  No, at the age of thirty-seven, she entered college as a freshman and earned a degree in psychology.  She returned to the hospital where she had been a patient all those years and worked as a social worker.

Making good on a promise that she made to God that she would dedicate her life to working with the mentally ill, Marie then returned to school and earned a master’s degree from Harvard University.  She later founded the Balter Institute where she hoped that her patient-led idea of mental healthcare would continue.

Marie Balter let go of the negative past without a retaliatory spirit.  She let it go and was able to grow from being “Nobody’s Child” (title to one of her books) to becoming everybody’s helper.

In her own words, ”I wouldn’t have grown one bit if I didn’t learn to forgive.  If you don’t forgive your parents or your children or those who hurt you, or even yourself you don’t ever get beyond that anger.

“Forgiving is a way of reaching out from a bad past and heading out to a more positive future.”

***********

Are there areas in your life where you are holding a grudge?  Focusing on that past can be holding you back from fulfilling your dreams.  Why?  Because you are looking backward instead of forward!  That past will trip you up, baby.  Let it go.

It really is true – holding a grudge holds a grudge on you, not the other person.  Forgiveness sets you, y-o-u, free.  Holding on ties you to the past.  Let it go.  You decide who gets to dictate your present and your future.

Let it go.

http://articles.latimes.com/1991-06-02/books/bk-229_1_marie-balter

Goodby to the Mental Ward : NOBODY’S CHILD: The Marie Balter Story, By Marie Balter and Richard Katz (Addison-Wesley

New York Times, http://www.nytimes.com/1988/11/27/us/ex-patient-is-state-hospital-official.html

http://drroycejalazo.com/marie-balter/

Wild Women Don’t Get The Blues

August 8th, 2014

Most of you know that I wasn’t in a relationship in the 12 years before Alpha Hubby came along and tied me down so I couldn’t get away.  He wanted to sweep me off my feet (which would have been much simpler), but no. He started as he meant to go on (smile).

So, I didn’t date.  For twelve (12) years.  Because I still had expensive luggage (baggage is for plebeians) out the wazoo, you might think I was a spineless wimp back then.  You might think I wasn’t going out because I didn’t have offers or was scared.  You might think I was too hurt and burned out to ever date again.  You would be thinking wrongly, my darlinks.

I was a Wild Woman.

Oh, wait before you get the wrong idea:  I don’t mean I “ran around
at night” and “drank all the Courvoisier I could find” (song lyrics) – that was the old me.  I was a single parent, working long hours and I didn’t drink or run around.  I made myself into a goot gurl because I was going to make darn sure my little Alpha Son had a secure and safe home with a relatively normal (Ha. Ahahahahaha) mother.

This song says that a Wild Woman will “tell any man to go to” h-e-double hockey sticks “if that man don’t know how to act right” – wild women – “THEY DON’T SIT AROUND WAITING”.  Wild Women don’t let some guy walk all over them.

 

dancing woman

Dancing

So I decided life was just fine and I could and would – and did – dance by myself!

I was a Wild Woman.

In those twelve years before Alpha Hubby, I learned why I was attracted to the wrong type of male – which is actually the entire point.  Males ARE those macho, really bad boys with no redeeming qualities, chest-beating, responsibility-slacking, non-job-keeping, eyes-wandering, “but baby you know it didn’t mean anything” cheating, low-down dirty… *ahem* – you get the picture.

MEN, on the other hand are the exact opposite.  They respect their woman. A man will protect his woman, keep her safe, brow beat her into letting him open the car door for her, make sure she has what she needs to the best of his ability, loves her unconditionally, and all the good things men are.  It takes more guts to be a man that it does to be a male.  Males default to what’s easiest.  Men work to be strong.

I was drawn to that bad-boy male.  I was ignorant gone to seed.

So I spent time healing and I found my Inner Wild Woman – that confident woman I used to be.

 

Rosie the Riveter

Rosie the Riveter

Wild women are strong.  I am SOMEBODY. I have a right to be treated with respect, dignity, honor, and as if I am valuable and precious.  I never got the blues again because I made a decision to enjoy my life to the fullest right where I was and I was going to do it loving ME.

I learned that if someone didn’t respect me then they never get any more time in my space.  Ever.  I learned the value of slapping that hand up, palm out, in their face, and saying, “STOP!”  Stop because I am never letting anyone put me down again, especially just so they can feel strong.

I DON’T HAVE TO PUT UP WITH ANYONE DISRESPECTING ME.  Ever. Again.

I learned how to respect myself.  I rebuilt my self esteem and I learned my worth.  I learned that I am OK just the way I am and I don’t HAVE to change before I’m worthy of someone’s love.

Smile

His Smile

Then one day at work, along came this guy I barely knew.  He had a beautiful smile. He was in awe of me (boy, has THAT changed).  He was gentle, patient, and kind to the point I said to him, “I’m not sure I know what to do with a nice guy because I’ve never dated one before!”

I mean, really – what was the matter with him?  He treated me right!  He said he was impressed with me when we met (his words, not mine).  He said he liked my strength and abilities.  Seven weeks later I married him.  Ha!  That’ll teach him to smile at me!!

Of course, NOW I know he is a reformed bad boy and he is dominating, aggravating, pushy, challenging, likes to get his way, hates to be told what to do, is very confident in himself (but not conceited), and would walk all over me IF I let him.  He likes that I don’t let him because he swears that he’d grow bored with a complacent pushover-type woman.  Unh huh.

I love him wildly and strongly.

His very strength helps me be stronger.  He helps me be my very best.  He loves me passionately.  He loves me just the way I am.  He loves me completely.  He loves me enough that I can let go and not be so strong.  He’s seen me cry.  That is huge.  HUGE.  He allows me to be vulnerable, and protects and keeps me safe while I am.  He is a strong man.

Strong Men love Wild Women.  Wildly and Strongly.

*******

The Gretchen Wilson on the playlist has a verse I love and while Alpha Hubby and I work on living with no regrets, more than once he’s said, “I wish I’d met you in the sandbox. I would have loved you then, too.”

If I could do it over I’d have waited for this moment 
So I could give my heart to you unbroken 
But if our mistakes brought us together 
Does it really matter whether 
We were saints or sinners in the past? 
I don’t care if I’m your first love, 
But I’d love to be your last 

*******

Baybay, I LOVE being your last.

Stockings and Garters and Rope, Oh My!

July 25th, 2014

stockings red        woman pin up

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There are a lot of blogs aimed at or written by younger mothers who blog about their children.  I think that is wonderful.*

But this isn’t one of those and I’m not one of them.  I’m from the other side.  The dark side.

I am here to tell you something.  Shhhh. It is a very well kept secret.

lips at last

There are definite benefits to having your children moved out of the house.  OK, there are major benefits to having your children moved out of the house.

You have reached a different stage of enjoyment with your kids. You are blessed to be able to see “who” they have become.  Alpha Hubby and I love that our son is also one of our best friends (along with his wife and their friends).

Be that as it may, after he moved out (and my short heart-aching melt-down), it didn’t take long to realize the benefits.  I looked over at Alpha Hubby and we shared a very sly grin together.  Helloooo, baby!

 

Tango 2 Bulls

Dancing Bulls Tango

I was blessed to have a mother who warned me to take care of business so that when Alpha Son was out of the house, Alpha Hubby and I would still know each other.  She warned that we needed to protect our relationship so we didn’t look at one another after 20 years and think, “WHO the heck IS this person??”

The best years ever as a couple are those after you have finished the years of raising children.  I’m serious!  I know each stage of your child is wonderful, and you never stop loving and praying for them.  But you let them go to spread their wings to fly or hit a wall, their choice.  You are there IF they need you but your focus has changed.  No.  That’s not true.

Little Boy Big Glasses

What ARE they doing?

Your focus shouldn’t change at all, just become MORE.  My focus has always been on Alpha Hubby, but I was also mom.  It isn’t the same during as it is afterward.  “Mommy, why is the door locked?”  No, it never happened but it could easily have!

NOW you can get back to the business of chasing one another around the house.  

Alpha Hubby and I didn’t get that when we married.  He took on the responsibility of Alpha Son and became his dad.  Alpha Son would not be who he is today were it not for Alpha Hubby.  He is the one who completed the manly-man training.  I mean, I have to blame someone for this:

Josh and rain 2 smaller

Flooded Driveweay

 

So anyway, my point is that there is more of this going on and less little metal cars, ball games, and school projects:

nighties

Fun!

 

We have more private time to sit around and share what we love about one another without interruption:

Fireplace

Romance

 

There is more of this:

seduction

Seduction


And some of this:

tango lean

 

And lots and lots of this, from here to eternity**:

lancaster kerr

Deborah Kerr & Burt Lancaster (From Here to Eternity)

 

And…

…well, needless to say, that simply is NONE of your business!

No matter what stage you are in your relationship and life, the most important part is to ENJOY it TOGETHER.  Life is way, way too short to not do so.

Oh, and the title?  Well, it caught your attention didn’t it???  Oh OK, here’s the rope:

Bondage

His is Red

 

You didn’t know that married people can make it hawt?  Shame on you!!

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*Not to imply that mothers who blog about their children can’t do these things, too.  I know they do, through experience.  I’m talking about once the kids have moved out of the house and you’re free to run wild without embarrassing interruptions.

**1953 movie From Here to Eternity starring Burt LancasterMontgomery CliftDeborah Kerr and featuring in the famous beach scene which was famous because the censors wanted the scene to be cut completely, but Columbia refused and the scene stayed in.  This was pretty risque stuff back then!

Think on These Things

July 14th, 2014

I think if you have followed me for any time that you know that I believe in positive focus, positive talking and staying far away from anything (or any one) negative.  Recently someone said to me that they believed I was setting up a false standard by telling only the positive stories of my marriage to Alpha Hubby.  They didn’t believe this was fair to people who had less than perfect relationships.

Zebra from Behind

Zebra’s Behind

 

Zebra puckey.  I have mentioned that I am a… um… volatile person.  Alpha Hubby is very calm (although he can blow his top if pushed to an extreme.  I think that has happened maybe twice in twenty years. 

I am thinking more that this person has missed the entire point of my posts.  Even my friend Pamela at Road-to-Joy Blog who wrote a wonderful book about relationships, “How to Screw Up Your Marriage: Do-Over Tips for First-Time Failures  (fka Love Gone Viral: Couples Who Make You Wanna Puke) got the point!  Go buy her book – it is e-book format and paperback.

How to Screw Up Your Marriage

How to Screw Up Your Marriage

 

In her book, Chapter Five: What are you looking for? She states:  1When people think I’m making all this stuff up about my storybook marriage and they tell me to get real, it’s a little frustrating.  I’m not alone here; my friend Nan (Zat’s me!) knows what I’m talking about. She and her husband make people want to puke, too. She feels exactly as I do about this.

“I’ve ridden the drama train before,” Nan wrote to me a while ago. “So has my husband. We are striving for peace. Our life is real and not without issues, but our marriage truly is wonderful. Part of why it is wonderful is that we always look for the best in each other, and we talk nice about each other.”

2Don’t let yourself look for any negatives, not for a single second. Today is a day for gathering positive evidence. Reject critical interpretations. Banish thoughts about faults. Refuse to look for sins and omissions.

Nan reminded me that the Bible says to “Focus your thoughts on what is true, noble, righteous, pure, lovable or admirable, on some virtue or on something praiseworthy” (Philippians 4:8).

 I love some of the other translations of that scripture – whatever things have honour, are of value, whatever is fair, what is a good report; continue to think about what is good.  Think about what is true and honorable and right and pure and beautiful and respected.  Think of that which is commendable.  Fill your minds with those things that are good and that deserve praise: things that are honest, reputable, authentic.  Keep your minds on whatever is true, pure, right, holy, friendly, and proper.  Don’t ever stop thinking about what is truly worthwhile.

couple scary woman

 

That scripture defines our marriage.  I wasn’t good at it at first.  I’m sure sometimes he wondered what he’d gotten in to.  I always assumed he had a hidden agenda and THEN that axe murderer deep inside would show himself and prove me right.  I don’t mean he’d hit me but that he would suddenly find me – less.

He never did.  He taught me how to focus on the true, pure, honest, valuable, beautiful, admirable, noble – the GOOD in the other person – him.  To not assume he meant something bad when he said something innocent that tripped a land mine trigger in me.  His favorite line for years was, “I’m not that deep” when I’d explain what I “thought” he was thinking.

love napkin

love napkin

 

As we focus on the good in each other, I am always reminded what I’d read in a letter to Ann Landers wherein the woman talked about being a widow and the women who griped about their husbands’ snoring.

Link is here: http://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=1696&dat=19850625&id=PgwdAAAAIBAJ&sjid=DJgEAAAAIBAJ&pg=4939,5422982

The point was:  Her husband had just passed away a few months before.  She wrote, “Whenever I hear a woman complain about her husband’s snoring… How I would love to have mine beside me snoring all night long.”

I read that back in 1985, long before I met Alpha Hubby, but I NEVER forgot it.  I made the decision right then and there that if I ever met my Knight in Shining Armour, I was going to value him, consider him someone precious to me, and protect what we had.

love never fails

love never fails

 

When I finally met him, lucky, blessed me, he felt the same way.  He had a heart for me and knew what was valuable.  What we have is so precious and rare we take very good care of it – WHILE LIVING NORMAL LIVES AS TWO PEOPLE WHO LIVE TOGETHER WITH STRONG PERSONALITIES AND OPINIONS.

We are human but we work very hard either not to fight in the first place or to forgive and restore quickly.  No long sleepless nights tossing and turning over a fight.

Boxing Gloves

Boxing Gloves

 

Yeah, yeah – I learned how much a waste of time that was in our first year of marriage.  I was so so so angry and was lying in that bed tossing and turning over our fight WHILE HE, the bum, slept the sleep of the righteous.  Or perhaps it was the exhausted.  But he never fumed half the night over a fight – so – I gave that up as a waste of time.  No one was impressed.

So to those people who think I am setting up a false standard, unobtainable for anyone, you’re wrong.  We really don’t fight much and our fights are other people’s light tiffs – totally stupid and ridiculous.  We raise our voices but usually not in anger.  We’re both pretty passionate, but in a good way.  Anger happens but it feels so awful we get over it toute de suite

couple touching

couple touching

 

What we do that is totally obtainable is to focus on the good in one another, the positive not the negative.  I never said it was easy.  It took me years not to allow past triggers to dictate my reactions.  His calmness helped me work through. 

And, as you know, it is important to know that isn’t just ONE couple who have this.  I know there are others out there.  You have Pamela and Eric – and Nancy and her Superhero over at Too Wonderful For Me (she hasn’t posted in awhile due to a death in the family but visit her and check her other posts out).

raspberry background

raspberries

 

 

So to all the naysayers out there, I say a big raspberry – BIG raspberries to you – and to quit being a zebra’s behind.  Learn to focus on the good.  So he forgot to take the garbage out – big whoop.  There are a million other things he does do for you… you’ve just forgotten to focus on them.

Start again. 

 

1,2Hutchins, Pamela Fagan (2012-04-29). How to Screw Up Your Marriage (FKA Love Gone Viral) (Kindle Locations 333-339, 351-352). SkipJack Publishing. Kindle Edition.

What’s in a Face?

June 29th, 2014

 couple contrast

couple contrast

I remember when I was younger and a friend and I saw an “older” couple walking down the street holding hands, I thought “Aww, how sweet” and she was grossed out.  She didn’t believe it was appropriate for old people (they were probably in their 50′s) to act like that.  She thought they should keep those public displays of affection to themselves, at home.

So many times youth judge older people harshly, thinking they themselves will be young forever.  Sometimes when one is older, that is the one thing we like about getting a bit older – you know it will happen to everyone, even snot nosed young people!

Apple Dolls

Apple Dolls

I’m talking getting older through numbers, not aging.  Aging is actually a choice or default, not a set-in-stone fact.  It is a choice as in you choose to accept aging or feeling less than 100 percent; to accept aches and pains as normal and to give up or begin to think it’s “too much work!”.

Or it is default as in if you don’t make a decision, one will be made for you.  If you don’t take care of yourself your body and mind default to aches, pains, wrinkled skin, thinning hair, weight gain, that it is normal or genes (tell that to Oleda Baker a beautiful 79 year old former model).

As I began researching longevity, I studied things I could do to stay healthy and active, keeping my joints fluid, maintaining my skin, etc.  What I learned astonished me.  We have been sold a bill of goods that says “You much have these symptoms as you get age; it is a fact of life.”  LIE!

In case you doubt me, look at these pictures below (click to enlarge) – pay very careful attention (there is a reason):

1-2

80+ Woman       sexy 80+ woman

3-4

Daphne Selfe 83

Daphne Selfe 83

Daphne Selfe 83

Daphne Selfe 83

5-6

Christopher-Plummer

Christopher Plummer 80+

Christopher-Plummer

Christopher Plummer 82

7-8

Carmen Dell’Orefice 82

Carmen Dell’Orefice 82

Carmen Dell’Orefice 82

Carmen Dell’Orefice 82

9-10

     Sister Madonna Buder

Sister Madonna Buder 82

Iron Nun Sister Madonna Buder

Iron Nun Sister Madonna Buder 82

11-12

Joyce & Authur George

Joyce & Authur George
(89 and 90)

Jacquie -Tajah- Murdock

Jacquie -Tajah- Murdock
82 – Current Lanvin Model

13-14

joyce carpati 82

Joyce Carpati 82

     Joyce Carpati 82

Joyce Carpati 82

15

Earl Cameron 96

Earl Cameron 96

 

*************

Ready for what they all have in common?

1-2 = Random pictures of women, aged 80+

3-4 = Daphne Selfe, age 83 - called “World’s Oldest Supermodel”

5-6 = Christopher Plummer, age 82, oldest Actor to win Academy Award

7-8 = Carmen Dell’Orefice, age 83, current model (she is the only one who has had “a little work done”)

9-10 = The Iron Nun Sister Madonna Buder, age 82  The 82-year-old `Iron Nun` who has completed over 340 triathlons – almost one every month for 30 years AND didn’t start until she was 48.

11 = Joyce and Arthur George, ages 89 and 90, still teaching amateur roller skaters

12 = Jacquie “Tajah” Murdock, age 82, Apollo Dance Theater Legend  and now new Lanvin model

13-14 = Joyce Carpati  (or Yahoo article), age 82 = splits her time between Paris and New York and still works as a beauty consultant

15 – Earl Cameron, 96, One of first Black actors in UK television and film, and still active.

*************

The last time I did something like this for you, most of the people were in their 50′s and 60′s.  So did you notice what all these beauties had in common?  THEY ARE ALL 80+ YEARS OR OLDER

The first picture is close to what most people think eighty (80) should look like.  The second is far more fun to think about and work to achieve.  The rest?  Oh my gosh they are amazing people, full of life, still agile, still functioning in society, still beautiful or handsome, still working, and still taking care of themselves.  And none of them badmouth themselves. They talk energy.  They talk life.  They talk doing, being and thinking strong.

*************

So you ask what this post is about?  If you are in your 20′s, 30′, 40′s START NOW.  It will be so much easier on you in your latter years.  You can live a long and productive – and beautiful – life if you plan for it.  It isn’t random.  Every one of the real people above took care of themselves in one way or another.

And if you are over 40, it’s not too late to start taking excellent care of yourself instead of falling for the default.  You know the one – where you joke about being or getting old, where you moan and groan and accept that you are supposed to feel old.  Where your mouth will undermine anything you try to do toward longevity.

As Carmen Dell’Orefice said, “…nothing on the outside is going to make a blind bit of difference unless you take care of the inside.”

But if you don’t also take care of the outside, then you will look like those apple dolls above – and we KNOW none of us really wants to look like that.

Research longevity.  If you’re even going to live what some think is normal – 80+ years – how do you want to live it?  Do you want to be in a wheelchair with your knees hurting and your mind wandering or gone?  Most of us will reach 80 (and beyond) but how you reach it and what shape you’re in is totally your choice.

Pay attention to what you’re saying.  Moisturize that face and decollete. Laugh a lot.  Enjoy life.  Dance in water puddles.  Begin to focus on longevity and make plans.  You have 9 roll models (and believe me, there are more) that prove you can live a long, strong, vital, and healthy life – and be beautiful while doing it!

What’s in a face?  Well that, my darlinks, is totally up to you.

Ta Da!!!

June 20th, 2014

I have all sorts of oldies love songs on my playlist on the player in the sidebar.  If you don’t wanna hear any of them, click on the sideways equal sign and pause the music!

So as you may know I was having some problems with my blog, losing entire years worth of work or finding a copy that was warped, missing pictures or adding symbols.  Some of it was backed up which proved useless as while I was able to back up, I was not able to restore it back to my website.  Major grrrr going on here in my office.

After much agony and research and learning new code information and stuff I’ll probably never, ever need again, I semi-determined that it possibly was my theme and permalinks and “who knows what-all” suddenly going wonky.  So I played with a theme they recommended that was clean and supposedly wonky-free. Problem with that theme is it was very very B-O-R-I-N-G.  Plain and ordinary.  Blah. Nothing special.

So years ago I’d saved this particular theme you see simply because I thought it was cool.  The girl originally looked like this:

Pretty girl

Pretty Girl BP

Which is all fine and dandy EXCEPT she is wearing a pretty pink dress and this is a blog (and in my closet is) about Little BLACK dresses.  That wouldn’t do.  I eventually discovered she’d made several ladies, one pregnant, one blonde and one with grey-silver hair!  And I may or may not have some rey-silver-white hair.  I’m not saying I do.  I’m not saying.

So I wrote to the creator and asked if she could make me one with a black dress and she quickly obliged!  How cool is that?  

Yes, Miss Catarina from http://caty.co has a few Word Press themes and is pretty amazing.  I love this new feminine theme and right now it’s working for me perfectly!  I am so grateful to this generous and talented woman.

Life is too short to have an ugly boring theme!  That doesn’t represent any of us, for sure.  We are all just too amazing!

Who’s Your Daddy?

June 12th, 2014

Click on most pictures to enlarge if you want.

Whos your daddy

Daddy

 

So my dad died in 2004.  It was sudden and unexpected.  I was on vacation and couldn’t get back before he moved on to heaven.  I am always grateful the last things we said to one another were things like “Love you” and we had hugged so I have no regrets but I’d sure like one more hug.  I have a small answering machine tape with his recorded voice on it that I listened to for days after he moved.

Dad2 cropped

Dad (late 70′s early 80′s)

Even after all this time, it is really strange that I can’t celebrate Father’s Day with him.  I don’t like that because my parents were big on celebration blow-outs.  I am always grateful for how long I did have with him – he was 82 when he moved – but to me it is not long enough.  He should have stuck around longer!  It really points out how important it is to CHERISH your dad – mom – loved ones.  Cherish the love.

josh gramp

Burning Trash

He was an amazing father and an even more amazing grandfather.  Alpha Son had 22 years with his “gramps’ which is more than some people get.  Dad helped him enjoy life, laugh, play, work, and to have an amazing man’s influence until Alpha Hubby came along to complete the work.

And Alpha Hubby – what an amazing father he is.  He sure did not know what he was getting involved with when he got involved with me!  Or should I say us!!

leland Josh small

After chasing cows for hours

I loved Alpha Hubby when we married but the day he climbed in the little rubber swimming pool in his jeans to sit down and play with a little boy, then lose his dignity on a Slip ‘n Slide – well, I fell totally, irrevocably, completely, 100 percent in love forever. And ever.

Or maybe it is time time they were swimming in the Atlantic Ocean at Thanksgiving in New Hampshire – and the hotel clerk thought they were insane (cooooold).  Or the Texas Gulf in November.  Hotel swimming pools. The pool at our house.  They love playing in water.

He is the epitome of an amazing father and friend to Alpha Son and it is fun to watch them interact.  Watching them together has taught me a few things about a man being a dad.

A Dad Josh Moment

Fishing

A dad should spend time with his kid(s) enjoying a hobby.  An accomplishment together makes excellent memories – and good food.

texas bay

Port O’Connor Texas

There should be adventures together, even studying jelly fish and murky bay water!

old pool

Dunking

There should be much laughter and play time together, no matter how old you get.

There should be funny stories that defy time and grow with each telling.  I’m not sure Alpha Son will ever forgive him for telling him chocolate milk came from brown Swiss cows.  Or the time we were staying in a hotel and Alpha Son lovingly saved his leftover chicken strips only to find them gone in the morning.  He still holds a mean grudge about it.  That morning Alpha Hubby suddenly created the three-minute rule:  If is left alone for three minutes, it’s fair game – which was funny until he ate my big-time expensive cashews.

A father should be brave:

leland from phone 3

Bass Pro Shop
Springfield MO

Strong:

HisArm1a

His Arm

Hard working:

P1050393

Moving Day

He should love God so he can be a good & wise leader:

Condo balcony

Condo balcony

And always be grateful for gifts received, no matter what they are!

Picture 147d (40) crop

Again with the hot sauce?

He should also let his wife stick a camera in his face all the time, day or night, no matter how much he hates having his picture taken, then not become angry if she posts it online because she thinks it’s great or maybe funny, heh heh heh.  Sorry hunny bunches smoochy poo sweetums!  Bwaaaahaahaaaa.  The power of the pen – um, oh – the keyboard?

January 2010 caught off guard

January 2010 caught off guard

Yes, father’s have a mighty influence on their children no matter what age they are.  Probably the most important attribute a father can have is a fantastic sense of humor and lots and lots of patience.  Loooots of patience.  Oh, that’s not with the kids, no.  It’s with the wife who drives him crazy.  Because I’m sure you’ve heard the saying, The best thing a father can do for his children is to love their mother.” ― John Wooden????

HAPPY FATHER’S DAY to the love of my life and the man who helped Alpha Son become the amazing man he is today.  Alpha Son and I cherish your love, cherish the love and life we have together as a family, and cherish YOU.

He Didn’t Have To Be

May 22nd, 2014

BE SURE AND PAUSE THE MUSIC PLAYER ON THE RIGHT SIDE!

leland Josh small

After chasing cows for hours

Sometimes in a life that often had harsh and cruel times something wonderful happens, something so special and precious that you savour it and thank God for it and will never let it go.

That is what happened for Alpha Son and me after we met the man who became my Alpha Hubby.  We never could have known how this man would impact our lives in such wonderful and amazing ways.  We were and are truly blessed to have him in our lives.

This month is the month Alpha Hubby became Alpha Son’s legal dad twenty years ago.   The judge was a friend of ours so he helped make it a special day.  The judge allowed Alpha Son to sit in the chair next to his bench as he explained to Alpha Son what it meant if Alpha Hubby adopted him.  He asked if Alpha Son was in agreement to take Alpha Hubby as his legal father, to which Alpha Son obviously said a resounding yes.

Even before Alpha Hubby and I married, there was a small first ceremony wherein Alpha Hubby and Alpha Son stood before the preacher and took one another as dad and son.  They even had their own vows.  Alpha Son had waited 11 years to have a real dad and I wanted to make this day as special for him as possible.

I still tear up at the memory of the ceremony and the serious look on both their faces as they were saying their “vows” to be dad and son.  Man talk about a choke up moment.

About ten years later, after Alpha Son had been out of the house awhile, he called to talk to his dad.  He told him that he’d emailed a link to him to a video he wanted Alpha Hubby to watch with me.  He’d just heard the song and said, “Dad, this is what you are to me.”

Since Alpha Son was always sending funny song links, we figured it was just another funny song.  The jesting and joking between the two is always going on.

But no.

Needless to say, Alpha Hubby and I both cried.  A lot.

Ya gotta love a God-plan full of love.

This is the video Alpha Son sent to his dad (you may have to pause the player on sidebar):


If you have trouble accessing the video, it is on YouTube here:  http://youtu.be/BjO1F6oCab8

Brad Paisley, He Didn’t Have To Be

Lookin’ back all I can say
About all the things he did for me
Is I hope I’m at least half the dad
That he didn’t have to be

**

I’m STILL working on rescuing my sidebar and lost files. It is very disheartening.

I Will Love Him Always

May 18th, 2014

Song for this Post: Always by Irvin Berlin, sung by Kenny Rogers

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Or you can go to You Tube:  http://youtu.be/HrBzXgBK48Y

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“They” tell you that if you do something it must be for yourself.
“They” say that you shouldn’t look to fit into a relationship until you are whole and 100 percent together.
“They” say you shouldn’t expect to be one with another person until you are one with yourself.
“They” say you need to be a princess before you expect to meet a prince.
“They” say you need to be completely healed from bad relationships before you can expect to be able to function in a new one.
“They” say you should be over the past before you can operate in the present.

“They” – whoever they are – never met the strength of Alpha Hubby (and if he takes me out after seeing this picture [and I don't mean to dinner], then it was nice knowing you).

HisArm1a

His Arm

If it were not for him, I would not be who I am today.
If it were not for him, I would not be whole.
If it were not for him, I would never have been one with myself because I didn’t even know what that meant.
If it were not for him, I wouldn’t even believe I deserved a prince.
If it were not for him, I would still be battling scars from past relationships.
If it were not for him, the past would always control not only my present, but also my future.
If it were not for him, I would always be missing the greatest thing in my life – unconditional love.

Unconditional love –is loving without expecting anything in return
Unconditional love – is doing for someone else without expecting them to reciprocate in any way
Unconditional love – separates the individual from the behavior
Unconditional love – is love that does not have to be earned
Unconditional love – is given freely no matter what.
Unconditional love – loves first when there is a stalemate and someone has to make a move
Unconditional love is measureless and this is what Alpha Hubby taught me.

Sure, we aren’t perfect in the sense that we never exchange conversations decibels louder than normal – *ahem* – and it is usually my voice but who’s counting? We are still two individuals living in the same house expressing our individual likes and desires.

In learning to operate as one, sometimes, in some ways, some parts of the separate two have to be killed off in order to function as one. This does not mean we lose our individual personality – our “you-neek-ness” – but it does mean learning to compromise, sacrifice, and work together instead of apart.

Nan 1974 in AF cropped     nan-semicropped-smaller

I am not the me I was when we met – of course one pix is many, many,MANY moons ago. Let’s see, at least 25 years difference… or less… or more. I ain’t talking, I’m hiding. I am a far better version no matter what.

Alpha Hubby brings out the best in me. He taught me to respect myself and strive for my dreams. He encourages me to believe in myself in areas I never dreamed I would or could. Truly, he believes in me more than I do myself. I will sing a love song to him and even after 20+ years of marriage, I still choke up because the feelings for him overwhelm me.

We have learned to function together in ways that best bring peace to us both. We know peace is the most important ingredient in our relationship. We seek and strive for it in every area and every way.

I don’t have to think of myself first. In meeting his needs, mine are met. He taught me that through unconditional love, no one loses out. I can trust him and I’ve learned to think of him first (as he does me). In that way, we both receive exactly what we need to operate in joy and live in love. I never lose out – ever.

It is kind of funny since back in the day, women’s lib screamed “think of yourself first because no one else will!” Not true. Unconditional love thinks of the other one first. And if you have ever had it aimed at you, whooo baby! All I can say is to never, ever, ever settle for less than unconditional love in your life.

Alpha Hubby is not everything I dreamed of in a true love mate.

How could he be? I didn’t even know this type love existed…

Before him.

Aways, Kenny Rogers (1926, Irvin Berlin)