Friday, December 8, 2017

Flashback Friday

Dec 1977:
I turned twelve:)  On Christmas Eve, we traveled to Granny and Grandpa M's to celebrate.  My cousin and I convinced Granny to climb up in the attic and get Aunt Linda's formals out for us to dress up in.  We had a blast, then returned home for the Christmas Eve service at church.

Christmas morning was different.  This was the first Christmas where we had an actual fireplace, so our presents were under the tree in the front room, while the stockings were hung in the family room.  Mom had strung greenery through the wall studs (the new paneling hadn't been installed yet, so the chimney was visible), and Dad had put temporary nails up for our stockings. 

I got my Lone Ranger doll ("action figure") and Silver, and I think this was the year our car broke down on the way to Great-Grandma's house.  Dad limped the car to the Zionsville exit, where the truck stop was, and a Good Samaritan, who happened to be going near Broadripple, gave us a ride.  We borrowed Grandma's car to return home that night, then the next day my sister and I had the run of the truck stop while Mom and Dad worked on the car!  I remember playing pinball, reading books, and when the car was fixed, Mom let us each pick a new doll from the gift shop.

On the 27th, we had our semi-annual get-together with Mom's BFF from HS and her family.  Peter, Tim, Vicki, Wendy, and I enjoyed playing a modified Cops and Robbers in the basement before going back upstairs and playing board games.

My hormones were beginning to blossom; I began to think of Peter as my boyfriend, and found out later he felt the same!

Next Month:  The Blizzard of '78!

*************
Present Day:
The temps have finally dipped into the 30s....ugh.  Today we're celebrating Kyle's 26th birthday with steaks on the grill and cake:)  The birthday boy's on the KETO diet, so no cake for him, but he's making himself a peanut butter pie.  The rest of us will enjoy a small cake from the bakery.

Truck shopping, cookie baking, and gift buying has begun!

Cookies Baked:
-Chocolate Chip:  18 doz; 10 doz packed away
-Oatmeal Raisin:  5.5 doz:  3 doz packed away

Gifts Bought:
Went ahead and bought the stocking gifts first!  A few gifts have also been purchased.



Monday, December 4, 2017

December Reading Schedule

November was a rough month for me, career-wise:
-Finish Heart Song (NaNoWriMo project) Laptop died.  Writing is 'on hold' until January.  NaNo Word Count:  10,033.  Sigh.....
-Do well at 1st Friday event  Sold 5:)
-Do well at Indy Christmas Toy and Hobby Show 13 sold, plus sold out of 4 titles!  Now need inventory...
-Have successful Thanksgiving YES!  Nice and quiet.
-Start Christmas shopping Sort of....
-Lose another 5 pounds Lost 2!  Down to 231:)
-Take 'big items' to Republic on Nov 4th  Nope; due to wreck, didn't have the energy.
-Successful CHRP retreat  Check!

Books Read:  3
            Print:  2
         E-book:  1

Weight:  Actually managed to lose 2 pounds!  Weighed in at 231:)

Overall Health:  Doing well, though my right thigh/hip has been bothering me ever since the ICGAH Show.  Maybe it's the way I stand???

Karaoke Songs Added:  12
                           Thurs:  6
                               Sat:  6

December Goals:
-Bake cookies
           -12/2:  Made 18 doz choc. chip
           -12/5:  5.5 Oatmeal-Raisin
           -12/9:  14 Dark Chocolate Chip, 3.5 Holiday Chip
-Christmas Shop
-Celebrate 2 birthdays  Kyle:  Went to karaoke the night before, then fixed steaks on grill:)
-Write Christmas letter
-Sign/send Christmas Cards
-Mail two books
-Buy inventory
-Spend a week with parents


Reading Schedule:
Print:
Tomb of the Moon-N. E. Riggs
Clayton's Star-Jillian Jacobs

E-book:
Secrets and Lies (HOB #4)-Susanne Matthews
Back To School-Dylan Cross

Karaoke Songs:
Thurs:
Where Do Broken Hearts Go-Whitney Houston Sounded good:)
I Think I Love You-Partridge Family (David Cassidy tribute; died Nov 21st) Brought laughter and audience participation, lol!
Whip It-Devo Amazingly enough, this went well:)
Midnight Blue-Lou Graham 'Sang' it more like a rap, but not too god-awful!
Whiskey Lullaby-Brad Paisley/Allison Kraus Richard Goodman and I sounded good on this!
Do They Know It's Christmas (Feed The World)-Band-Aid Again, had fun with this one!

When I Look To The Sky-Train
Miles To Go-Celine Dion
White and Nerdy-Weird Al
Amazed-Lonestar


White Christmas-Bing Crosby???
White Liar-Miranda Lambert
Modern Day Delilah-Van Stephenson
White Rabbit-Jefferson Airplane
Angel Of The Morning-Juice Newton



Sat:
One of Us-Joan Osbourne Did well!
One on One-Hall and Oates Ugh...
One Step At A Time-Jordin Sparks Bleh....only did well on chorus.  Tripped over my tongue too much.
One Tin Soldier-Coven  Nailed it!  I was sooooo happy; loved this song since I was ten!
Lost In Your Eyes-Debbie Gibson  Nailed it!
One Toke Over The Line-Brewer and Shipley Slightly too low, but was told I did well.
One Way or Another-Blondie  Did well:)
Only The Young-Journey Nailed it:) Camera Batteries died, so will have to re-sing
Only God Knows Why-Kid Rock Wasn't too god-awful, lol!

Only Time Will Tell-Asia
Oops I Did It Again-Britney Spears
Open Arms-Journey
Open Your Heart-Madonna
Operator-Jim Croce?????
Opposites Attract-Paula Abdul
Ordinary World-Duran Duran

O Holy Night
O Little Town of Bethlehem
O Come All Ye Faithful
O Christmas Tree

Friday, December 1, 2017

Recovering.....

I've had a heck of a month.

Laptop died; spent four days in Indy, then one at a women's retreat.

Took me three days to fully recover from that trip, plus another day of wallowing in self-pity from the loss of my laptop.

On the good side, I did manage to break the 10K level on my NaNo word count, so yay me!

Since there are 5 Fridays this month, I'm using this one as 'free' one, so if you're expecting a Flashback, come back next week.

I should have my goals up by Monday, and now, I'm off to restock my pantry shelves and bake cookies for the next three weeks, plus celebrate two birthdays.

Happy Holidays!

Wednesday, November 29, 2017

In Shock......

Is Someone On A Witch Hunt?
Will it ever stop?

As I stated last week, CBS fired Charlie Rose for sexual misconduct.  Today (pun intended), it's Matt Lauer at NBC.  Who at ABC will get the ax next week?  PBS?  Fox?  (Not talking Fox News)

Seriously, at the rate this is happening, will no one over 40 and in the public eye, be safe from scrutiny?

Remember the movie Disclosure ?  Where are the men who have been harassed?

Meatloaf came out with a great song, Where The Rubber Meets The Road:

"Somewhere some girl is crazy and some boy's half out of his head
Somewhere somebody's fearless and someone won't wind up dead.
Somewhere two hearts are pounding and they don't care what's correct
Somewhere somebody's falling in love w/o a background check...

Son, I'm Mr. PC believe you and me I'm the ultimate king of correct
And if you wanna make you gotta make her take it as a sign of your deep respect.
If you're gonna do it, you gotta see through it to the heavenly trust that it is
Then you can call her a slut and you can call her a slave if you remember to call her MS...

Where the rubber meets the road; welcome to protection mode
Used to be sex was a fine hello, now the rubber meets the road.

You say "Girl, you're a beauty" but I'm no beast, I got a little contract right here
See, you can slam on the brakes anytime you got the stick, even if we're in fourth gear.
Cop in the front seat, lawyer in the back seat, gettin' it on videotape
Got a shrink in the bed, Lord, sittin' on the headboard, swearing that we both got raped.

Where the rubber meets the road..."

Don't get me wrong; I honestly believe harassment exists.  But sometimes it's taken waaaaaaaayyyyy out of context.

A recent FB post asks, "What's the difference between sexual harassment and teasing?  Answer:  How handsome the accused is!"  (or something like that; cannot find post now)

When I was 13, I was the object of several boys' ridicule, for whatever reason.  I blamed myself, since I was just learning to flirt, and in retrospect, the attention I received scared me, and I didn't know how to handle it.  Instead of speaking up, I buried myself behind the thickest mask/wall/whatever you want to call it, and prayed it would blow over.

It didn't.  Not until the stress got too much and I really became the object of ridicule for another reason.  Did I speak up then?  No.  I just wanted everything to stop.  Rewind.  In my mind, I'd caused it, so I deserved it.

Fast-forward twenty-five years.

I was married with two kids, and working a temporary part-time job while the spouse was laid off.  A stupid rumor began circulating; the other person and I decided to have fun with it; we knew it wasn't true.  Our manager was in on the joke, and the three of us teased back and forth.

Another co-worker took offense, and told me I was being harassed, because of some of the things my manager was asking me.  I wasn't offended in the least; we were only kidding back and forth.  I was 25 years older and could hold my own by now.

Was it sexual harassment?  I don't think so, but later that manager was threatened by the other coworker; she would hire a lawyer unless he backed off.  She later left that work place, so I have no idea if she ever followed through.  And no, that particular manager was NOT what I would call 'good-looking', but he and I got along well.

Is This Part Of A Master Plan?
Someone on FB just wondered if this was a ploy to get rid of everyone over 40 and to replace everyone in the media with 'young liberals'....ei-yi-yi....I sincerely hope NOT!

Anyway, I need to get off my soapbox again and start my day.  I get the feeling this issue is going to be around for a while; I don't remember how long the bruha lasted back in '91, though Disclosure brought it back briefly in '94.  Think the OJ scandal pushed it to the back burner.



Friday, November 24, 2017

Flashback Friday: Dr Jekyll/Ms Hyde

Nov 2007:
I'd learned about NaNoWriMo the previous year, but since we were in the middle of Moving Hell, I'd put it off.  Partly because I didn't yet have a desk or any 'established' writing area, and partly because, I was too darn busy with setting up our new home!  But since we'd now been in Vincennes for a year, plus joining the online community and discovering there was a wonderful network of authors to mentor me, I decided to sign up for the challenge.

I'd submitted a scene to three people I trusted, to see if I was on the right track, heat-level-wise.  They loved it, and encouraged me to keep going.  So when November 1st arrived, I dropped all three kids at school, flexed my fingers, and began to write.

I had to set a timer, so I'd know when to pick up my Youngling from Head Start, then a second one when to pick up my HS child (MS could walk the six blocks).  If my word count was still nowhere near the 1600 mark, I appointed the older kids to be in charge of the toddler and set a 3rd timer for when to start dinner.  After dinner and clean up, same story.

Week #1 was good; I was enjoying where the story was taking me/

Week #2 began okay, but then the tension escalated.  My daughter dawdled in the mornings, and she was constantly late.  I even got a traffic ticket one morning, since we'd caught a train and I made a rolling stop through a 4-way.  My pleas fell on the officer's deaf ears, and not only did we get a ticket instead of the warning I'd hoped for, my daughter was (you guessed it!) late again, because she refused to get out and walk the remaining two blocks/

Week #3 was a disaster.  Arguments with the kids; stress because my word count was falling behind....I even had a meltdown in my daughter's principal's office over the pressure of being a single parent; having an obstinate daughter; and a husband who didn't understand what I was trying to do, and insisting I 'stay off that god-damned computer', and threatening to throw it out the window or even shutting it down in ten seconds if I didn't log off.

Yeah, it was really that bad!

Week #4, I felt a little better after my meltdown, plus my characters returned to my brain.  We'd spent Thanksgiving with friends, so I didn't have to host or clean up, and as soon as we got home, I started pounding out the story again.  Words flowed.  November 30th, I squeaked over the 50K mark at 50, 035.  I'd done it; written my 1st full-length novel in thirty days.

BUT, I was now so sick of my characters, I didn't even want to reread it right away.  I uploaded my document, poured myself a glass of wine, and called my mom, telling her I was going to email my 'winner' certificate to her, and would she please print it for me?  We were currently out of printer ink.

Several lessons were learned through this experience:
-I didn't realize I was that much of a perfectionist
-I didn't realize I could put that much pressure on myself, over what?  A self-imposed deadline?
-I turned into someone I didn't recognize; my KIDS didn't recognize; and my hubby was ready to have me committed.  I NEVER want to do that to myself ever again.
-Finally, I'd proved it to myself, so there was NO NEED for it ever again.

That magical story?  Teacher's Pet:)

Next Month:  Birthday and Christmas!

*************
Present Day:

Friend Travis brought me a new MS 7 OS tower!  I LOVE not having to wait ten minutes for it to load, or clicking a link and having three tabs open.  A new laptop is still in the works, and when I totaled up my word count , it came to just over 5K.  Still 45K short, but hey....at this point, I'll take whatever words I've added as gold.

My heart is broken because of the death of David Cassidy on Tuesday.  I know; none of us is going to live forever; it's just that he was so young.  We also lost Malcom Young (co-founder of AC/DC) and Della Reese this week.

Had a good time last night with my older kids at Karaoke:)  I didn't get to do my DC tribute, but maybe on Saturday.

Had a quiet Thanksgiving at home yesterday.

Have a great weekend!

Tuesday, November 21, 2017

Tuesday's Rant

Apparently I need to shut off the news; it's unleashed my fingers.

*Ahem*

First of all, RIP Della Reese.  I loved your singing voice; I was a semi-faithful viewer of Touched By An Angel, and loved all the comedic roles you took on over the years.  You will indeed be missed.  Fly high, dear Angel.

2ndly, what the hell was that pompous father THINKING?  #45 just saved your kid from jail, and b/c he didn't personally fly him home via AF 1 (the man was on a freaking presidential TOUR, for Christ's sake!), he decides he's 'offended' and refuses to say 'thank you'.

The kid in question, however, did.

So why did the father have to get involved?  (see yesterday's '15 minutes of fame' comment)

*shaking my head over stupidity*

3rd, it began with Clarence Thomas/Anita Hill, Gary Hart, Clinton, even Candidate #45.  Recently, Harvey Weinstein, then Kevin Spacey, now Al Franken, that guy running for Congress, and now Charlie Rose-of all people??-has been accused of sexual harassment. Even Ryan Seacrest?  As hard as that man works, when does he even have TIME?

Hubby and I were talking about this earlier this week.  The person accusing the candidate says it happened over forty (40) years ago.  Is there no statute of limitations?  Let's see.....are any of the boys who sexually harassed ME 40+ years ago in the public eye?  Or the ones who sexually harassed my SISTER?  *rubs hands together*  Maybe my books would sell better if I were to publically accuse them?  Hell yes, I'd settle for a nice tidy sum....I could actually pay for more booth fees and my inventory!

*Looks around*  You know I was only joking, right?  I really don't care to dredge up those awful thoughts anymore, and I doubt anyone cares about what happened nearly 40 years ago.  Want to know the story?  Come back in two years (about this time, actually!) and I'll fill you in.  If you've been a faithful reader of this blog for the past 7-8 years, then you already know part of the story.

*stepping off the soapbox*

Wonder what tomorrow's morning news will bring?  So long as it's nothing to do with David Cassidy.....I hope he recovers!!!  Heartfelt prayers to his family.  This will indeed be a somber Thanksgiving.  Makes me want to cook dinner for them as they are taking shifts at the hospital.

Monday, November 20, 2017

Monday Rant

Saw something on the news this morning that made my head spin and jaw hit the floor.

"A NYC university will no longer allow cops on campus, even to use the bathroom."

Why?

"According to our research, a number of our students are afraid of the police, and having a police presence would make their 'safe place' feel less safe."

Are you freaking kidding me?

How safe are they going to feel when the CRIME RATE goes up?

Has NYC U lost it's mind?

On a side note, where did we go wrong with this generation?  We dare not offend anyone; apparently all millenials need safety blankies; we're raising a bunch of entitled WIMPS!

Everyone now wants to be a victim, to get their 15 minutes of fame.

When did the police go from being 'your friend' (you know, that GUY you call when your home has been violated, or any crime has taken place?) to 'the enemy' (that guy who *must* be shot before he shoots you)?

I don't even know whom to blame, or even cast a light on one particular incident.  Rodney King?  The incident in Kansas/Missouri/Iowa (yeah, yeah....I can't remember....)?  The kid in Florida?  #44, for his idiocy in enabling this racial divide, instead of helping to SOLVE it?  Thought he was supposed to bring about the end of the 'race war', instead, things got worse.

We have kids playing the victim card "because my great-great-great-great-grandpappy was enslaved by YOUR great-great-great-great-grandpappy.'

Instead of carrying over the 'hate', BREAK THE CYCLE!  Stop carrying around this false sense of entitlement you think the world owes you, because of said circumstances.  Pull yourself out of this 'feel-sorry-for-me' attitude and DO something CONSTRUCTIVE for a change.

Go to college.  Get a good job.  Hell, run for president/Congress and MAKE changes, instead of whining about it.

Talk talk talk talk.....how about some ACTION to back it up?

Instead of people fighting to be RIGHT, how about people work TOGETHER to repair the damage we've done to ourselves?

And while I'm on this soapbox....when did everything the world does become the USA's problem?  Don't we already have enough on our hands?  Yes, babies in Yemen are dying.  Yes, the POS in NK needs to be spanked and sent to the dungeon his room.  Yes, there's an unsavory person in power in several countries.  But we have people living in our streets; we have families who have to choose between food/shelter and having medicine.  Remember the adage 'in order to help others, we must first begin with ourselves'?  No, this doesn't make us selfish; it keeps us HEALTHY!

Right now, we have a broken political system; a broken health care system; and someone trying to repair it, except he's fighting an uphill battle.

Apparently, we're just begging for an invasion.

Be careful what you wish for; you might get it.

*steps down and bows head to pray*

***********
In other news, David Cassidy, one of my 1st beloved actors/singers, is in critical condition.  Sending lots of love and prayers to his family.

I had a Partridge Family lunchbox

I still have my Partridge Family Christmas Album.

I watched Partridge Family reruns every chance I got, during the summers I spent with my grandparents.

I was upset when he was rudely booted off Celebrity Apprentice, since he couldn't raise a lot of money for their fundraising task.  So his rolodex wasn't as loaded as the others.....so what?

Oops, I feel another rant coming, so time to end this before it gets out of hand.