Saturday, November 24, 2007

A Sofa, Squash, Family, and Friends~ ♥~♥~♥

I'm the eldest of 6 kids- (some of you know this :)
All my family, except for a brother in San Diego, lives here in NC.

One sister, Naomi, lives in a small town near the mountains...about 3 hours NW from where I live.

She bought a house this summer, it was built in 1894...yes- I said 1894, While it has been renovated and restored over the last 113 years, she's been adding her own touches to the place and I had not seen it. We all wanted to go, so 15 members of my family made their way from central NC to the foothills of NC on Thursday morning.

(This is not her house, but it's similar)

The sky threatened a storm, but no rain fell. However, about 15 cars ahead of us- a driver in a pick-up truck on I-40 dropped a big black sofa on the highway!

I was sending text messages to friends when T slammed on the breaks! I jerked my head up from gazing at my phone to see 14 or so pairs of tail-lights- all glaring red- and all getting closer with each passing fraction of a second as they were all slamming on their breaks too!
I hear the squash casseroles slide across the back of the 4Runner, as well as J's b-day cake...(her b-day was Nov 21)- but I'm more worried about whatever might be in the back seat of the car in front of me- seeing how we were all getting rather close to each other. a matter of seconds the crisis was over. We passed the sofa on the highway- and everyone else managed to miss it too. In a few minutes we saw the offending (and pulled over) pick-up truck and the matching love seat. T suggested to the driver (telepathically?) - to TIE the F'n furniture down next time they wanted to move something on I-40...but I think I'm the only one who heard him :)

We arrived at my sisters house with no further incidents.

Until she went to warm up the creamy, delicious, cheesy, squash casserole I had gotten up at 7 am to bake.

It warmed up nicely in the oven- unfortunately when she took it out she placed it on a hot burner- and the dish BLEW up into about 1,000 pieces. Not only was that dish ruined, but also the one next to it- because of all the crunchy bits of glass in it. No one was hurt- thankfully, but there was pretty much casserole in all 4 corners of her kitchen, as well as some flung into the dining room. Yikes...

My rolls however, were a big success. They were fine to eat right out of the bag and fully protected because of their plastic covering. Thank goodness :)

The casserole you see below is one I made today- because damn- it ...I wanted some! (without glass in it, of course.)

I didn't bake a turkey this Thanksgiving, and it's the first time in 18 years that I skipped that tradition. I did, however, make 3 squash casseroles (only 1 was eaten), a giant pot of beef stew, a breakfast casserole with sausage and 3 cheeses (below), and tomorrow I think I will make my first batch of fudge!

I also got a surprise in the mail from my friend Foamy on Friday! Yeahhh! (thank you! I've already used the "lavender"!!!) Hugs for you friend...and fudge too when it's ready to send!

We all arrived and returned safely. No one said anything they will ever regret saying. No one had too much to drink, not at least until we were all back in our own homes :) I did have a toast for Scary Monster...but that's an inside thing :)

My sisters house is wayyyy cool. Both my parents, in spite of the divorce, were there and arrived together. I got to hold my 4 month old nephew again- and he smiled at me :) So what if the casserole didn't make it to the table- we had more than enough food :) 19 of my closest family members were all together for this Thanksgiving holiday...

I'm not sure I could have asked for anything more ♥~♥~♥

(unless, of course, you are moving a sofa and love seat in a pick-up sure to tie the %$#@ things down- and tie them down good!!! lol! :)

Tuesday, November 06, 2007

When Perfect is the Enemy of Good

In this context I'd like to consider the word "Perfect" as an absolute in comparison to the word "Good" which can vary in meaning and by degrees.

My backyard- Nov 6th

I read a quote this weekend which said emphatically, "Perfect is the enemy of good". The writer was speaking of food and cooking, but the quote hit me with such force that I re-read it several times- out loud (to the puzzlement of my husband) and found the words wedged into my brain like a doorstop.
I was having an "Ah-ha" moment. Perhaps I was also having an "Uh-oh- Ouch!" moment too~

Thoughts, images, feelings, and principals swirled around me, as if I were standing in the inverted pinnacle of a whirlpool or a tornado- I could SEE dozens of areas in my life floating past me where I definitely needed to apply this new idea, or suggestion, that "Perfect is the enemy of good".

In parenting, marriage, friendships, writing, weight loss, health, my hair (gasp :), time spent, events to be planned, the upcoming holidays, gift giving, religion (I have to think more on that one), exercise, cooking, cleaning (!!!), decorating, communicating...

Ahhh- it was dawning on me...crashing on me actually...of how often I strive for "perfection"- knowing full well that it is usually out of my grasp, and being disappointed with the "good" I achieve.

It is maddness.

Perfection is about CONTROL.

Good is about being at peace and exhibiting grace in less than perfect situations- which are the norm!

It's an amazing thing to see someone act or perform with "perfection"- or as close to it as can be imagined. I think of people like Michael Jordan, Tiger Woods, or my grandmother's crocheted blankets. I think of Emeril's standing rib roast, poems by Robert Louis Stevenson, and paintings by Ande Cook ;)

Is there anything YOU do perfectly? I make a perfectly wonderful chocolate chip cookie, and sometimes I make the perfect pan of fudge. Some days I have great hair :) --and that's it for my list of perfections. :)

On the more important topics- like parenting and marriage- I tell you honestly I am far from perfect...but not far from Good. My kids, my husband, my home, and most of my friendships are---good.

There are things in my life, of course, that are bad; but "bad" is not the opposite of perfect. Much like the opposite of love is apathy- I think the opposite of perfection is insouciance, or detachment. To simply not care.

I know in some ways and in regards to some people I care too much- and I try too much... because I want to be perfect for them, or to be the perfect friend...or the perfect "meeter of needs". I am realizing (painfully) that in some things, and in some relationships, I must settle for "good"- because in truth- "Good is better than perfect". And, I realize that if "good" is not good enough (for certain people, or situations)- then I have to them let go.

I believe in there are areas in life when we need to perfect the natural skills we were born with- those skills which came to us with ease...those are things that each of us are meant to do- and do well. But those skills are on the short list.

Everything else we have to work for- and I have to stop beating myself up in the areas where I fall short.

I'm not perfect.

But I'm good- or at least trying to be :)

I'll be off line for a while except for a quick post here and there. I'm up to my ears in family stuff at the moment and this might continue through January. I'm not being distant- I promise- I'm simply in over my head for now- and I HAVE NOT RUN OFF WITH PHIL! :) But don't tempt me! :)

You are all special to me- I just had to say it :)

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Crystal Coast, Emerald Isle and Atlantic Beach- North Carolina

(click the link in the title)

I don't need to tell you it was beautiful~ not when I can show you :)

We were contantly under the "threat" of ugly weather, but it made for some of the most beautiful clouds I've ever seen.
I received some bad news just before leaving- family stuff, and it was another reminder that we are continuoulsy under the "threat" of a storm.

We can hide inside or we can head out for a day of fun inspite of what the weather man says~

We went out- and sat in the sun.

I turned pink :) A lovely glow that will last all week long. Of the 4 days of sun and moonlight- there was a total of 2 hours of rain. Barely enough time to get in a good nap!

On a serious note- the bad news has me out of sorts- and I tried not to think about it over the long weekend. Today- home alone, it's hit me rather hard. Everything will be ok eventually, but a marrige close to me is coming to a bitter end and all I can do is watch the thing die. It affects a lot of people, as a dying marriage is bound to do. I just don't understand it.

I understand the feeling of being trapped- but freedom from the promise one made is not the answer. Freedom comes from within. Making another person responsible for YOUR happiness is a brutal trap.

I understand the disappointment of a dream not becoming the reality one hoped it would be, but every day is a new chance to begin again. I understand apathy...but I don't understand letting it become the dominant force of your life.

I'm still growing up I think, and the lessons aren't getting any easier; but each sunset and potential storm mean more to me than the one before. I suppose Im headed in the right direction?

Hope so~

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Paradise from Fire...

I found a post recently from a blogger that I've been reading for over a year.
He posted this:


You can’t have passion
without having hope.
When you have passion,
you no longer fear.

While I agree with his statements above- I have some questions...
and I had a vision.
I'll start with the vision.

I saw a volcano.
Liquid fire gushed up through the top and spilled over the sides of the mountain...burning, rolling, inching it's way towards the water below.
The lava was beautiful, powerful and intense.
Absolutely nothing could stand in it's way. It consumed everything in it's path.
Plants vaporized from the heat long before the lava got close to them. The whole landscape of the mountain was altered.

Over time and as it moved it's color changed. Slowly it lost it's bright red intensity as it started to cool. Eventually it turned into what looked like black stone...barren and porous.

What had been a vibrant, hot, moving, molten mass of melted earth was now something completely different. It had become rock hard- black- and very sturdy.

What if passion is like lava?

What if, over time, passion completely changes it's form and function?
What if what you experienced early on in your relationship is unreasonable to expect later on?

What if you are unprepared for the truth of that transformation?

What if you keep expecting the red hot stuff, but only find black rocks everywhere?
Did anyone tell you this would happen?
Didn't you see it your parents marriage? Or did you chalk it up to apathy, or old age, or not pay any heed to it?

The passion couples have for each other is not always like it was in the beginning- sometimes not even close. However, the poem above makes a profound statement...
"When you have passion, you no longer fear"-

No fear of being alone. No fear of rejection- (at least in a healthy relationship.)

Passion becomes one of two things, as I see it. It either burns up and burns out, or it transforms into something solid- something you can build a relationship on.

It's interesting to think of liquid fire becoming stone and then supporting life. It does not seem possible, and yet-- look at Hawaii. A whole chain of islands created by volcanic activity- now lush and green and full of living things.

What is better? The burning hot lava- red and fiery- and a wonder to behold? Or the stunning plant and animal life that's taken over every square inch of the islands?

It's difficult to comprehend in the lava stage that things are going to change so very, very much.

And hard to imagine, when standing in Paradise, all of the beauty we behold started with an explosion and fire.

This is where I find myself in this phase of my life.
Missing what was and stunned by what is.

THANK YOU MANTISSA for the photo! I love it! It is perfect!!! Hugs :)

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

Quick thoughts...

Time is short.
Love is big.
Anger is a waste.
Regret is something I have less and less time for.
Communication is important.
Touch is vital.
Tears have meaning words don't.
Opinions are free and worth what you pay for them.
Rules get broken- so do hearts.

Time is short.
Love is big.


Thursday, August 30, 2007


It's after hours, so I can post something! (Ahhh- a LOOP-HOLE! Yeahhhh!!!) (heaven help me if I become a mid-night blogger!)
In truth I can post whenever I want, but I am trying to be disciplined during the day. Nights are set aside for family but tonight I'm kind of on my own.

Here's what my teacher taught me today-

"A genuine work of art must mean many things; the truer the art, the more things it will mean... It is there NOT so much to convey a meaning as to wake a meaning."

-George MacDonald, writer

Then he said about children, in regards to stories that were imaginative and difficult for adults to get their minds around...but kids-
"They find what they are capable of finding, and more would be too much."


Wishing I was at the ocean!

George MacDonald has written many fairy tales, and some of those I would like to re-write and publish because they are almost lost to the general public. I had to look hard to find a book of his stories, and they are so outdated, yet still wonderful, that I feel sure the up and coming kids of today, as well as their parents, would enjoy a new telling of these tales.

My name in Chinese...actually, I think it means "Cola"-

sweet and bubbly? Hmmm- my friend should have translated

my name into "Vodka"- LOL :) (looks innocent enough to be water,

but not innocent at all! :)

So...I found my muse/inspiration today in one of my favorite authors. It's amazing after the many years since his death- he still speaks clearly. Yesterday I felt defeated. Today I felt empowered. I read in bed, took notes, and drank hot tea. (I also did laundry, cleaned the kitchen, went to kroger, cooked dinner, and did the school pick-up thing-)

Tomorrow will prove to be an even better day! I simply feel it. I feel free. I feel alive. I feel touched by something... I hope I'm not sick! LOL :)

Happy weekend everyone- I hope to catch up with each of you this weekend!

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

A grumble...but maybe Chesterson was trying to tell me something???

On second thought...nevermind~
Thanks /t for the wonderful laugh-
and Phos- I promise from here on out I will do my best to
never leave that "look" on my blog again!

Monday, August 27, 2007

Home Alone~ ♥

At 7:40 am- everyone left for school/work.
I made scrambled eggs and sausage with toast and orange juice.
My house is empty.
Time to write :)

Hugs everyone- hope you have a great week :D


"An adventure is only an inconvenience rightly considered.
An inconvenience is an adventure wrongly considered."
- GK Chesterton

Friday, August 24, 2007

Asher and I

My nephew :)
Just thought you'd enjoy a tiny glimpse into my life :)

An Explaination

She/K9 and I had a good conversation 2 weeks ago about my writing, and I promised her that I would get serious about it.

The first thing I had to do was clean my desk and organize my office.
It's nearly done. I will be ready next Monday to begin in earnest. Actually, I might start before then.
She/K9 also said a profound thing to me in regards to my looking for a job this fall..."You are avoiding your calling!" It was one of those statements that goes all the way through- like a spear- piercing the heart of the matter- piercing me. It hurt in a good way...the best of ways actually.

My friend knows me, and she understands, she's "been there, done that."

In truth I am both excited and apprehensive.
Looking at this cleared off space and surrounded by everything I need to be productive reminds me that now I have to look inward, sow seeds, be faithful in nurturing the work, and reap the harvest. And most of this I must do alone.
She/K9 also said, "Time I spend on the blog writing is time I'm not painting."Again, she's right.

The disaster behind me in the above photo was my desk 2 weeks ago~ I just wish I could get my hair to look the same way my stylist did! I loved it :)

I've also decided I need to write down my near-death experience, and I might post that. I'll try to publish it first in a magazine or something, but I'd also like to share it with some of you. When I have it finished I'll let you know. I would love some of you to read it for content (like X and She) and some to read it for errors (like Susan/EOR). Libby, I think you would simply enjoy the story.

Ok everyone, that's what's going on. I'll still be here, but I'll be working. You know exactly where I'll be...sitting behind that desk and getting it all messed up again! ;)


Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Just one more...I love it too-

"An act of love that fails is just as much a part of the divine life as an act of love that succeeds, for love is measured by fullness, not by reception."

-Harold Loukes

I'm sorry...I just couldn't help myself.
My blogging days are quickly slipping away as I prepare to spend more time writing other things when school starts next week.

I promised She/K9 that I would get serious about it- and I am.
Tomorrow I am not going to post anything at MV! I promise :D

"Sigh" this~

"A man falls in love through his eyes, a woman through her ears."

-Leo Tolstoy

Have you ever loved someone who shut you out or stopped speaking to you?
Ever shed tears over silence?
Ever wept over words not said?

Sometimes words are all we have. Sometimes we don't need anything more.

I appreciate you when you speak/write to me.
I'm not in love, but I love what you say.

I just wanted to say "thank you"~ and forgive me when I blip out.

-me :)


Anyone besides me having trouble with Blogger today?

I know, I know...we get what we pay for- right?

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Weather Channel...UGH!!!

This is priceless! (and totally a spoof on the WC- to be clear)

An illustration of absurdity- by being absurd.

–adjective 1. utterly or obviously senseless, illogical, or untrue; contrary to all reason or common sense; laughably foolish or false: an absurd explanation.

Monday, August 20, 2007

Mute Monday~ "Food and Drink"

For "She":
Food and Drink in my life...
The carved Ostrich egg came from South Africa~
The weird food halfway down was in China.
The "Corazon" has not been opened, I bought it because it had my name on it! LOL

Friday, August 17, 2007


Summer was finally broken this morning.

A violent sounding CRACK split open the sky around 9 am and thunder trampled with heavy feet above us in the clouds. I thought, as I was waking, that a fleet of trash trucks from city were invading the neighborhood, but then the rains came.

I breathed a contented "SIGH",opened my curtains, parted the blinds, and decadently reveled in the the brilliant flashes of light, the loud rumbles of thunder, and the glorious rain which fell on parched earth. The seal of summer was torn asunder. The promise of rain and cooler weather was uttered; and the exhausted landscape of my little world rejoiced with me this morning.

I was actually having a bad dream when the storms came through. I was trying to get somewhere, trying to catch a plane, trying to find my wallet and tickets, trying to understand why I had so many pairs of shoes in my bag! (and I am not a shoe freak at all- I have maybe 5 pairs?) My sister was with me- trying to help but slowing me down....

And then the thunder came. Time to get up. Time to welcome the day, the day that hopefully signals the beginning of the end of this drought, the day that summer began to surrender.

I wish you rain, unless you live in Texas, and the promise of cooler breezes around the corner.
Thanksgiving is just over 3 months away! :)

Lux, I wish you dry weather and safety from all storms... Hugs :)
She/K9...a big hug and kiss on the nose :) for you friend- I know you are in the same kind of hot and weary place I am <3

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

From my of my favorites

Found this today by accident~
Isn't it funny when you find something from your past- specifically from your childhood like an old toy, or favorite book, or in my case- an long forgotten video clip from Sesame it takes you back to those formitive years with so much clarity?
I swear, as I watched this video, I felt as if I was transported back to my parents bedroom (where the only tv was) around 1974...sitting on the hardwood floor- with the old kitchen in view through the door way. It was summer, the back door was open and so were the windows. I was wearing shorts and my hair was in a pony tail. My sister Naomi was next to me- and from this point on in history- "Manamana" became a beloved song that I still hum when I'm in an exceptionally good mood :)
Enjoy :)

Monday, August 13, 2007

Hope you'll see...

The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes but in having new eyes.

Marcel Proust (1871 - 1922)

I needed that today. I'm away for the next several hours, but will be back soon~

Friday, August 10, 2007

UH-Ho...New Do :)

I went and got my hair cut...
I think I look like Kate now! (except I don't have her dimples!)

I love Kate- so...
all is well :)

A TALE of TAILS in Myrtle Beach~

First I want to thank Chesca for honoring me with the "Thoughtful BLogger" award :)

It's nice when someone pays you a compliment, but moreso when that someone is a person you admire and connect with on many levels. It bewilders me at times when I consider how many people I have come to cherish on my blog...and that I would have never met them if not for the power of the internet. Thank you Chesca- for your kind words...and more importantly- your friendship :)

Now for the Myrtle Beach Mis-Adventure...

My best friend, C, is dealing with a family crisis at the moment. She was going to be in Myrtle Beach and I was at Emerald Isle, 3 hours away, and she asked me if I would join her for a few days. I said yes.

Trying to save some money I decided not to say on the beach, but I would stay a few miles inland and drive to her ocean-front hotel. Good idea- right?

(This pic made me think of Foam :)

I chose a place about 7 miles away, inland, on Hwy 501 which intersects with Hwy 17...the main drag of Myrtle Beach. I chose a Country Inn and Suites because these are always nice places to stay. However, I got a raised eyebrow from a lady at a local restaurant when I told her where I was staying. It puzzled me, but I let it go-

I checked in, went to my room, unpacked the car (will I ever learn to pack LESS???), sat on my bed, opened my laptop, and then looked out my window. From my bed I could see the place next door to my hotel..."Fantails" Adult Enterainment.

"Great" I sarcastically thought. "Just great!" Then I wondered about the men (and women?)who would go to there...and would I be able to see them in the parking lot from my window? I wondered if they were old, or young, married, single, lonely, happy? Most of the men in my life (husband, brother, peers, etc) have either never been to an Adult Entertaiment place, or have been- but didn't think much of it (and perhaps they are lying to me, but I don't think so).

I haven't been to one either...though I did have a fleeting thought about going next door to see what it was all about.

I didn't go though.

Later, after dinner and finding a bottle of Firefly Vodka (produced ONLY by the Irvin Winery in SC!)- I went back to the hotel. As I was getting out of the car I looked across the highway- and guess what I saw?!!!

AGHHHHH! Have mercy! THERE was another Adult Entertaiment place! "Nuttin' BUTT Horseplay" Sigh.

I went to my room, made a Cosmo and put on my bathing suit. I headed to the pool/hot tub with my book and my drink, and had a good long soak, and then a swim. For most of the evening I was alone. (some kids came to play later).

I returned to my room to get ready for bed and to check my email and stuff...I looked in the mirror and my hair was curly from the steam of the hot tub. I took my picture, and then went outside and took shots of the "Entertainment" places around me.

My "Adult Non-Entertainment" Myrtle Beach photo! LOL!

Turns out there was at least one more place- about 1/4 of mile down the road. I was smack-dab in the middle of more Adult Entertainment than I've ever seen in my whole life!

The most entertainment I had (or wanted!) was swimming in the pool, sitting on the beach with my best friend, and unwinding with a good drink before bed. I also watched the Discovery channel- which was showing a special about Pythons. I live a very exciting life, don't I? ;)

The Hotel was fine, the staff was great, the price was right, and the location was ok. Had I known about all the gentleman clubs within walking distance of my hotel- I would have probably paid the extra $50 and stayed closer to the water :)

I'm sure the "Fantails" place is fine for some, but I really prefer see the tails of dolphins and such when I look out the window of my hotel room :) Next time, if there is such a thing, I'll know better!


Thursday, August 09, 2007

On my way home~

I left my camera cable at home and I am bursting to tell you about my Myrtle Beach trip...where I found myself nestled right in the middle of South Carolina's Gentlemens's Sex Club district...UGHHH!

It's crazy. One side of the road has all the shopping a woman could ever hope for.
The other side of the road has all the women a man could ever shop for!


I'm not tall or lean enough to be mistaken for one of the exotic chicks- so no one's hit on me, of course, then again, when I realized where I was--- I kept to my room!

Anyway- I'll be home this afternoon, reunited with my camera cable. Yeahhh!

X-Dell, if you noticed that I was at your place for--oh, 12 hours or so, it's because I was reading up on you and then fell asleep with your page open. And NOT because I was bored...I was exhausted! I promise to leave a comment soon- as soon as I re-read the X-Spot! :)

Hugs everyone :)

Tuesday, August 07, 2007

Is it just me...

Or does DAVID LEE ROTH look a lot like Draco Malfoy's father in Harry Potter?

I think I'm going to be sick now :(

"I'm Just a gigolo
everywhere I go
people know the part
I'm playing

Paid for every dance
selling each romance
Oh what their saying

There will come a day
And youth will pass away
What will they say about me

When the end comes I know
they'll say just a gigolo
Life goes on without me

I'm just a gigolo, everywhere I go
people know the part I'm playing
paid for every dance
starting each romance
oh what their saying

And there will come a day
And youth will pass away
What will they say about me

When the end comes I know
They'll say just a gigalo
Life goes on without me "

Monday, August 06, 2007

How to live,Chesca, Archetypes, Grunts tag :)

I liked this~

“Live this day as if it will be your last.
Remember that you will only find ''tomorrow'' on the calendars of fools. Forget yesterday's defeats and ignore the problems of tomorrow.
This is it. Doomsday. All you have.
(not sure I agree with 'Doomsday', but I understand his point)

Make it the best day of your year.
The saddest words you can ever utter are, "If I had my life to live over again."

Take the baton, now. Run with it! This is your day!
Beginning today, treat everyone you meet, friend or foe, loved one or stranger, as if they were going to be dead at midnight. Extend to each person, no matter how trivial the contact, all the care and kindness and understanding and love that you can muster, and do it with no thought of any reward. Your life will never be the same again

-Og Mandino
Today I had the great pleasure of talking to Chesca! :) (exskindiver)- and what a treat that was!
I think it was the first of many good conversations- I hope so!

I've been reading a book called "Sacred Contracts", about the Archetypes of our personality and why we respond to people and situations the way we do.
So far I identify with:

1) Saboteur- fear issues that cause one to block their own empowerment and success.
2) Wounded Healer/healer/caregiver- serving others in the form of repairing the body, mind, and spirit.
3) Networker- Making connections between vastly different groups of people
4) Lover- exhibits great passion and devotion (not confined to sexuality)- has a sense of unbridled and exaggeragted affection and appreciation for people/things.
5) Jester- Makes people laugh, makes them cry, wears a mask covering their real emotions (sigh!)
6) Creator- strong need to be creative or imaginitive.

There are supposed to be 12 of these things running around inside of me, but 6 is where I am right now. I know there's a child archetype in there too- but I've not studied that too deeply, and I know I should.

Grunt tagged me to tell about 8 facts/habits I have-
I'm only doing this because Mr. Grunt is a beloved blogger, but heck, you all are! :)

1) My favorite color in the world is the color of the sky mid September, in NC- kind of sapphire blue. Laura Ashley Saphire #3 comes close. My living room is that color.

2) I collected cow stuff for ages and have no less than 5 cow pictures/paintings in my home.

3) I met my husband for the first time when we were 5. I don't remember it, nor does he-

4) I am just over 5' tall...I mean a TAD over 5'- and I think I'm getting shorter!

5) My family names (grandparents) include Alverson, Boyce, Crill, and Runkle

6) Two great grandmothers were named Cora- I was named after them...
One was named Cora Dell (X and I had a good chuckle about that :)

7) I've kept a journal for 30 years (since I was 8 in 1977 :)

8) I am tatoo far ;)

Ok, ok, ok- I have to sign off and go read To Kill A Mockingbird to the kids. They were mad when I stopped earlier :) I promised more before bed this evening.
It's funny- both of my children are fabulous readers, but there's still something about my reading to them that they love.
I'm lucky that way- for a little while longer at least :)

Thursday, August 02, 2007

Interview with a Monster~

The island waters lapped the golden shore with a serenity and peace hard to fathom after the frightening earthquake days before. A quiet restaurant with a thatched roof on bamboo poles was a few yards from the water, mostly undamaged, and 2 creatures sat inside at a candle lit table. One was a female human, the other a monster of sorts, male of course.
Both seemed a little nervous, as it was their first real encounter in "meat-space". It was hard to tell if the somewhat tense aura was due to chemistry, or the fear of aftershocks. However, after a shared bottle of sake, all tensions melted away. The 2 creatures revealed through dialog and physical gestures they were dear friends at heart- separated by time and space, yet joined in spirit in a way I can not explain.
(See Scary in the upper left corner of this pic?)

Clearly the human woman had traveled a long way to meet her monster friend. He had proposed an interview, she accepted, and since this is fiction- she thought, "Why not fly over and speak in person?"
So she did.
This is what I heard him ask the human woman, he called her Mayden-

Here are your questions:

Do you feel that your graciousness and charm are due in part to your southern upbringing?

"Scary- you are a DEAR! (she blushed a little) While my mother is a true southerner and did instruct her children to use their manners and to be considerate, I think the "Grace" aspect of my personality has been heightened by all the grace shown to me in my life. I am amazed, daily, by how stupid and selfish I can be- and by how quickly it is forgiven or overlooked by those who love me.

You are known to be a warm and loving individual by most of the people who visit your blog. Have you ever done something malicious to a person, if so, how did you feel afterwards?

"Honestly, No. I've done sneaky things to get someone in trouble (like spraying my perfume in his car so the other chick would know I was there), or played a questionable joke on someone, or left a pointed note on someone's car who had rude bumper stickers or parked badly...but I've never done something malicious or mean (at least not as an adult) to another person. I know I would feel so guilty and sick about it I would apologize. Being mean is just not part of my nature."

You seem to have a happy marriage. What is your secret to not letting molehills turn into mountains?
My husband and I have been friends for almost 25 years, which is over half of my life. We know each other well- and neither of us come from families who believe fighting is the way to solve personal issues.
I'm hot, and he's cool. I'm passionate, he's even tempered, but both of us know that we have to move to the edges of our personalities in order to meet in the middle. Sometimes we do this well, sometimes we don't. This is actually a difficult period in my marriage. One thing that I am learning is that my husband can not meet all of my needs. And it's wrong for me to expect him to. I am the only person who can truly make me happy...
and this is true for everyone. I've branched out more in the last 2 years than I have in my whole life- and it has been good for me.

Are you a happy, satisfied person?

Not fully, which makes me sad to say. The problem is I am half-way to a bunch of things, and the finish line is not quite in sight. My kids are half grown, I'm near the mid-point of my life- I have books written, but not published, and I'm in a place where my kids and husband need me less and less. I need to fill the void. I'm figuring out what that is presently.

Tell us about the Cora we’ll know 7 years from now?

Sweet Monster...In 7 years I will be 45, my kids will be almost 19 and 21. Several of my books will be published and I will either have a home on a lake, or near the ocean- where I write most of the day. I hope I will have been to Indonesia, and the Philipines by then...and perhaps a visit to the Middle East. I have a strong feeling about all 3 places- about people I am supposed to meet there, and not necessarily people I know.

With that, the interview was over, and the 2 creatures hugged and decided to go out for sushi and dancing. I'm not sure how the night ended but there were many rumors in the village the next day about a pair who matched their description.
One kept spraying perfume into strange men's cars and leaving lipstick smooches on the windows, and the other just laughed and kept pouring the vodka.

A fun time, to be sure, was had by all...until the next morning when I heard Mrs. Monster yelling at her spouse, "I don't care what that so-and-so American tart told you! If you want to "branch out" I'm leaving!"

But, I'm kind of thinking that after 25 years of hanging out with her beloved, she might change her mind~


Wednesday, August 01, 2007

Monday, July 30, 2007

First day home- and I'm out of sorts.
As you know Cadence died just a few days before I went out of town. I missed the funeral and the gathering afterwards, so there's a part of me that still needs closure. In one way it's as if my trip to Charleston simply put my grief on hold...even though there were moments (like the day of the funeral) when deep saddness erupted in the midst of what was otherwise a joyful week.

All day I've wanted to blog but couldn't find the words. I kept stumbling, mentally, over a dark brooding feeling- and couldn't put my finger on what it was until just a little while ago.

I want to share my photos and funny stories about the family reunion, but there's a cloud over my heart. However, I'm going to press on~

One highlight of my trip to Charleston was getting to meet fellow blogger Greg and his family. He was gracious enough to invite us to his home and then show us around his greenhouse and then the Irvin Winery.
We had a great time and appreciated Greg and Diane being willing to meet us and show us around.

After the winery Tim and I and the kids went to the Charleston Tea Plantation, the "only" tea plantation in the US. We learned all about the tea plants- from how they're harvested to the final process of putting those little leaves in paper bags! There was a giant green (copper) frog on the front porch and I just couldn't resist giving him a little smooch!

He didn't turn into a Prince or anything...but I don't suppose he would have anyway- seeing how I'm not a Princess! :) And, Tim would have been peeved about having an extra dude hanging around. ;)

The purpose of the Charleston trip though was a family reunion, with 32 0f us splitting 2 houses, sharing meals, group cooking/shopping, talking, beaching, and lots of laughing.

I have never eaten so well in all my life! Everything was prepared by hand... We had Mexican food one night, Beef Brisket with black beans and rice, a low country boil (corn, sausages, and shrimp simmered in a big pot outside...MMMM!), an old fashioned cook out with hot dogs, hamburgers, dips, and all the fixings, breakfast casseroles, pork chop biscuits, shrimp grits, bacon, eggs...Oh! It was ALL GOOD!

(Aunt Helen, me, and my Aunt Carmen)

I know some of you (Mantissa :) expressed concern about spending a whole week with extended family, and yes, there were moments when we had a few rough patches...folks not seeing eye to eye on certain things, but for the most part we all got along remarkably well. They are good people and I am honored to belong to them, and they to me.

Our last day at the beach was overcast, but the water was heavenly! There was almost no undertow and the waves were gentle swells which was a pleasure to swim and float and play in!

Apparently the JELLYFISH thought so too! One of them, with long tendrils, floated past my right leg and decided to hug me (or something!) Dear God in heaven...what pain!!! Suddenly it felt as if my leg were on fire- and I was doing all I could to get out of the water. The swelling and red marks were wrapped around from the side of my calf just above the ankle and up the front of my shin to just below the knee.

If you are ever stung by a jellyfish, this is what you should do-

*Rub a handful of sand on the site immediately. This makes it feel better for a few minutes (and I think it helps scrub out some of the poison and any barbs still in the skin. )

*Rinse off the site with clean fresh water and then soak the affected skin in VINEGAR for 20 to 30 minutes. I soaked a wash cloth with vinegar and sat in the tub.

*Then apply a paste of meat tenderizer, water, and baking soda to the skin and let it sit for another 10 to 15 minutes.

*Lastly, and I thought this would really hurt, but it didn't, apply shaving cream and SHAVE the area. The razor will pull out any remaining barbs and it scrapes the poison out of the skin.

I will never go to the beach again without Vinegar, Baking Soda, and Meat Tenderizer. As many times as I've been swimming in the ocean I've never had an encounter like this one...never been stung or bitten (except for tiny fish nibbles) by anything in the water until now. I was in serious pain for the better part of the evening although the treatment listed above lessened the pain by about 50%. My leg is still marked up from the encounter, but the pain was mostly gone by the following morning.

The next thing I'll post will be the interview by our beloved Scary Monster. I'll be by your place for a visit very soon- I've got loads of catching up to do!


Sunday, July 29, 2007

I'm backkkkkkk....

Sunburned (but only a little), well fed (I gained 7 pounds- UGHHH!!!!), well loved, and stung by a beast of a Jelly Fish! But I'm here~
And I missed you :)
Except for Greg the Gardner...who I saw on this last trip! He, his wife, and his kids!!!

More tomorrow..but tonight I'm pooped :)

Love to all of you-
especially Scary Monster, Greg, X-Dell, Foam, Kate, Lux, K-9, Mantissa, Aunty, Libby, Phos, SJ, Little Lamb, Leelee, my Uncle Ray, Sis Naomi, Bone, and everyone else who checked in on me.

And, NYD of course ;)