Fred Wasn’t Impressive

After preparing our home for the approach of Tropical Storm Fred, was a bit disappointed that all we are getting today are clouds and a light rain. Regardless, we are very thankful Fred wasn’t a category 4 or 5 that smashed into our section of the Gulf Coast. My prayers are with those folks in the Florida panhandle area.

The next storm, Grace, is strolling up along nearly the same path. That’s bad news for Puerto Rico, Cuba and the areas Fred just came through. The current path has the storm again heading out into the Gulf. Nevertheless, we shall stay prepared. We have plenty of water, canned goods (a manual can opener) and have moved and outside furniture that could become airborne, into our shed.

Still, I love living in Florida. This area has a few weather challenges, but nothing we can’t handle. I grew up in Northeast Ohio, a survivor of the Blizzard of ’77-’78. I come from hearty stock, rooted in the hills of West Virginia and Kentucky. A little rain and wind, ah, we got this…hold my umbrella drink!

Take care, Friends! Be kind to one another!

Pandemic, still…

Hey, how ya’ll getting along out there? I hope you are well and taking great care of yourselves. If Covid has touched you and your family, I’m so very sorry to hear that. It touched me and my family as well. Just a few days after my oldest son’s wedding last September, I tested positive. My husband and I became more sick than we’ve ever been. It was like we took the list of symptoms and split it between us, our cases were not the same. For two weeks, I had the most monstrous migraine headache and fever. I don’t wish that on anyone.

We got vaccinated as soon as it became available to us. We wear masks when appropriate. We still don’t like it, but it is the best thing we can do for ourselves and our family.

I live in Florida, where mask wearing has become a politically charged issue. Our Governor, bless his heart, has stood up and demanded there will be no mask mandate for children in schools. Some parents agree, many do not. It’s sad, in my opinion, and seems as if the Governor does not want these children protected. I don’t care what we does in his own home, but pushing schools to risk the health of children is not, by any means, a good idea. These kids are too close to each other all day long. Anything they pick up from each other, they take right back home to their parents, siblings, grandparents, neighbors…and ultimately, you and I.

So my view is, wear the stupid mask. Yes, it stinks, and nobody enjoys breathing back in their own exhaust. We can’t defeat this virus if we aren’t all on the same page, or at the very least…reading the same book.

Take care, folks! Have a great day, respect each other and be kind.

Masks Debatable, but Wash Those Hands

Wash your hands. Wear a mask. Are there two more popular phrases in our world these days?

I’m certainly in favor of hand washing and using those personal hygiene practices that we all should have learned as children.  Most of my adult life I’ve been fascinated by those folks who use the restroom and leave without washing their hands. Yes, ladies as well as men…and at public restrooms, no less! What are you thinking? I’ve no clue how one exits a restroom without proper hand washing. It must be something either missing from their genetic make up, or maybe extra piece that makes them a superhero incapable of any germ infestation at all.  Either way, ya’ll still need to wash your hands!

Masks are a constant debate. Do they prevent infection? Are they really only suitable for the medical profession? What about the breathing implications for asthma patients? Are children okay without a mask? How do we avoid our face breaking out with “maskne”? What if I just don’t want to wear one? So many questions, so few answers.

I’m required to wear a mask at work, but that has been the only place I’ve consistently worn one until recently. Since I live in Florida, a blazing hot spot for positive Covid tests, I’ve begun to wear one in public more. I hate it. No way around it, they are very uncomfortable and sweaty in the Florida humidity. And my glasses fog up. But I do it.

Now our leaders are saying that the younger generation are the highest in positive cases. Well, yeah…so you open bars and beaches, they flock there. Makes sense to me. Social distancing? Not so likely. I work at a college…not looking forward to students returning to campus from all over the country, bringing whatever they’ve got with them. Young adults and teens are social beings for the most part and hopefully they will take to these new social requirements easily. Many feel they are young and invincible…just like we all did at that age! We all need to be open to these new changes and regulations in our world. We keep hearing the term “new normal”…time to embrace that, whatever it is!

Now…pull your mask up off your chin, and go wash your hands!

 

 

Hand Sanitizer

Life’s little paper cut finder!

And who is getting rich off the increasing price of this stuff? First there wasn’t enough to go around. Now that it’s everywhere, it’s double or triple the price it was before the pandemic started.

There are three hand sanitizer stations in our office at work. We are prompted by signage to use it each time we enter and leave the building. I got a paper cut earlier this week that will not heal because it keeps getting deep cleaned by 80% alcohol 15 times a day! I know it can’t be infected, but it is an open gash.

And don’t even get me started on toilet paper hoarding…

So This is 2020

I know I’ve been away from writing here for quite awhile, but this change in our world is ridiculous!  Who knew back on New Year’s Day that at the end of June we would be in a worldwide pandemic and wearing masks? Cuz if you did know, why the heck didn’t you tell the rest of us?

I’m not always sure what to make of this virus/pandemic/weirdness that we’ve come to know. Is our society even ready to adapt to wearing masks? I’m not sure everyone is, though most seem to be trying.  I see young children wearing them and it breaks my heart that they have to experience this. I certainly don’t enjoy wearing one, my guess is they do not either.

But this is what is called our “new normal” and we have to learn to work with it. I’m certainly not going to be one of those people who storm into a business that has posted signs requiring masks and proclaim that I an not obligated to comply. I know that I am obligated, for not only my own health concerns, but the others around me. I still don’t have to like it, and I honestly do not like being told I must wear a mask. But I’m doing it.

I’m required to wear a mask at work now. It’s hot and uncomfortable, and every chance I get, it comes off. I hate it. When alone at my desk, or sitting outside alone and away from others, it comes off.  It does make sense, though I do see where some would think it will harsh their mellow to be required to mask up.  Maybe it does, but so does dying from a virus that you might contract if you had not worn it.

I know we will all come through this eventually. Whether we are a smarter and more aware society when we emerge, remains to be seen. There are some lessons we can learn from this. The main one, the basic lesson of wash your hands. Really? Did it have to take a pandemic to pound that into our heads? Apparently so, and that is a point that concerns me. Did our Kindergarten teachers really fail is so badly that we don’t wash our hands effectively enough? Sad.

I live in Florida, which has recently emerged as a growing “hotter spot” for new virus cases. I have not, to be honest, consistently worn a mask when out and about. I do believe in the concept of “Herd Immunity”…if we all are exposed, then we build up the immunity needed to fight this and we get stronger. I don’t know if this is the answer, and Dr. Fauci hasn’t really asked my opinion, but I’m putting it out here anyway. Take it for what it’s worth, just my viewpoint. We all need to be comfortable in our own opinions and feelings, so if you don’t agree, I respect that.

So take care out there, my Friends! And wash those hands frequently…twenty seconds with hot, soapy water.

 

 

Thanksgiving Week

We all have a lot to be thankful for, but many of us seem to only think of these things at this time of year. Why is that? I don’t know, but maybe has something to do with how busy we are, or think we are. Easy to overlook the little things when we are running ragged trying to get through our lives.

I believe my life has slowed down significantly in the last several years, and for that I’m thankful. I love my family, I’m thankful for my husband and three awesome sons. I tolerate my job, which helps pay for our life, and for that I’m thankful. The house we were able to purchase last year is a dream come true, and I’m thankful for that each and every day.

Let’s all take a moment and be thankful. Yes, Thanksgiving is about the food, the family, the travel to see relatives…but also about the beginnings of this amazing country we all call home. I agree, there are things that need change in America, but I’m not going to list those here because we wouldn’t agree on them all anyway. If we support each other, embrace our differences, and treat each other with kindness, I believe we might just find even more things to be Thankful for.

Have a wonderful Thanksgiving, everyone!

A Long Absence

Hello, there!  I’ve been a stranger, not written in a very long time.  I have no excuses, reasons or anything to say on my behalf.  I’ve simply been “away”.  I’m back, and the plan is to not wander so far away again.

So what’s happened since my last installment?  A lot, and then again, not very much.  Still living in Florida, and we’ve bought a house.  That’s a huge deal!  I don’t ever want to go through the home buying experience again!  Our realtor was amazing, no complaints there.  Our finance guy…kinda a clone of the Energizer Bunny, only not so warm and fuzzy!  He did the job, got it done for us, but the hoops we had to jump through were a killer!

We haven’t adopted a new dog yet, can’t bring ourselves to replace Chewy.  He’s irreplaceable.  At times I’m ready, then others I’m just not.  Still cry over the good memories.  Now and then we do dog-sit for our buddy Shadow, he’s a black and white Cocker Spaniel with the sweetest disposition!  That helps fill the hole left by Chewy for awhile.  Maybe someday…

We’ve got our dream house!  Three bedrooms, a pool, nice neighborhood, etc.  It checks off all the “gotta have” boxes.  But of course, after just a few months, homeowner reality sets in and we had to replace the air conditioning unit.  Another few months later, the hot water heater takes a crap.  Now a possible issue with the pool pump…but it’s still makes me happy knowing that it’s our home, our special place forever!!

Halloween is coming quickly and I don’t know what to expect in our new neighborhood.  I asked the ten year old boy next door if there’s usually trick or treating.  He was so cute, said he couldn’t remember, but maybe he might be too old for it this year.  Really?  Since when are ten year old boys too old for costumes and candy?

Thanksgiving? Christmas? Don’t get me started on how quickly that’s coming at us!  I don’t even have outside decorations and lights for the house yet.  We can’t be “that house” with no lights in the neighborhood!  I need to figure out the best way to string lights in palm trees.  I’ll check for a video on the internet!

If you’re a friend of my previous posts, thanks for checking this out again.  If you’re a new friend, Welcome Aboard!  Until next time…have a fabulous day!

 

The Hole in My Heart

For fifteen years, met at the door by my dog, Chewy. His bubbly personality, always happy to see me, ready for head scratches and belly rubs. Stalking me from room to room, but sometimes would get bored and look for another family member to track. If one of us were out, pacing and whining until all his humans were safely back home. But this last week, no more.

Unfortunately, old age caught up with Chewy quite quickly over the last six months or so. He became blinded by cataracts, slowed by arthritis attacking his joints, and quite possibly some type of neurological distress, all which contributed to hacking away at the lively little Lhasa Apso we’d all come to love and adore.

The heart-wrenching decision was made and Chewy was sent on his way to that “better place” where he will no longer suffer from his ailments. My family is broken, feeling this loss deeply. Fond memories bring tears. A lot of tears. We each experience the emptiness in different ways, we hug and console each other as best we can.

I think the time of day where I most miss my little buddy is at night. Chewy seemed to know when it was getting close to my bedtime and begin to give me “that look”. I’d ask if he was ready for bed, Chewy would jump down from the couch and walk towards the bedroom. Some nights he would jump up on the bed and wait for his blanket to be placed just right in his spot near my feet. Other nights when he wanted to snuggle close, he would burrow himself in beside me and drift off, all the while giving off enough body heat to take the chill off a large building.

I miss that little bed hog. More than I ever thought possible. Chewy was more than just a dog. He was an integral part of the family. The one constant we call could count on, giving unconditional love and support, no matter what the situation. A nudge, a kiss, a paw…exactly what was needed, exactly when needed.

No one else will ever fill this hole left in my heart. It’s your spot, Chewy. You will always be with me.

Thursday On My Mind

Why does Thursday take longer to arrive than any other day, and then it hangs on like you’ve no place else to be…ever?  Even with an absolutely gorgeous day here on the Gulf Coast, the day drags.

I do like Thursday, it feels like an accomplishment to me when it finally arrives.  I know I’ve already gone through most of the week, with only one more day to the weekend.  If I’ve had a busy work week, things tend to simmer down by Thursday afternoon.  This makes Friday simply a breeze in the wind!

Thursday evening is also a quiet night at home.  Bill and Cody go bowling, leaving me home with Chewy.  Although he’s a male dog, we call it “Girl’s Night”.  We can make whatever we want for dinner, watch whatever we want on TV, and go to bed early if we wish…and frequently, we do.  Tonight, I believe a bath is on the agenda for Chewy, which he will protest, but it is futile…we must make an effort combat any case of Swamp Ass the little dude may be festering.

Until last week, I would watch one of my favorite TV shows each Thursday, “Parenthood”.  Since I go to bed before it aired, the DVR was set to catch it for me.  Sadly, last week I watched the last episode of the series…and yes, cried my eyes out!  That’s another reason I wouldn’t watch it when the Guys were home.  They didn’t need to see what a slobbery mess I became.  I do think they closed up the series nicely, bringing each story full circle but also leaving viewers with a bit to ponder.  I would love to own the whole series on DVD so I could watch it all again…Kleenex box in hand, of course!

I have several movies backed up on the DVR, thinking I may watch “The Grand Budapest Hotel” tonight.  Looks interesting, and certainly not something the Guys would enjoy.  Sounds like a perfect “Girl’s Night” for Chewy and I.

Enjoy your day…and yes, the weekend is coming! No, your clock is really NOT running in reverse.  It’s simply Thursday!

Sticky Notes Rule

Think about this…how did the world even function before the creation of Post-It Notes?

I cannot even imagine an office anywhere that does not have a bin full of assorted colors of sticky notes in their supply cabinet.  These amazing inventions are likely the most helpful items ever.  Looking over my desk, I currently have two notes hanging from my monitor, three stuck directly to my desk, and another five on other sheets of paper pinned to my wall.  Not that I always remember to look at my notes…but that’s another day.

The uses for these sticky little marvels are endless.  They make great bookmarks, are handy by the fridge to note groceries you need to pick up, and are the perfect size for drink coasters.  You can use the sticky side to clean dust from between the keys of your keyboard.  Use them to mark events on your family calendar with specific colors for each person.  Maybe even decorate your friend’s car with hundreds of notes for a birthday surprise.

Besides being every color of the rainbow, you can find these handy little guys in various shapes and sizes, too.  I’ve seen holiday themed sticky notes and some pre-printed with grocery lists or chores for the kids to do at home, and even things for teachers to use in the classroom.

What a world we live in, huh?  Imagine how one sticky little piece of paper has transformed the way we do things.  If something like that can make a huge impact, what can you do to change the world around you today?