Poetry, Pre-op Prep, and Pudding"

Soaking Away my Sins

Surrendering to sleep until seven-thirty am

Sweet relaxation!

Simultaneously staring at the streaked shower glass

Soaking in a salty mix of Epsom salts and frankincense

Waiting the twenty minutes it takes for hopeful detoxification

Sweating it out while sipping on cinnamon-laced ACV tea

Striving for Nirvana

Wanting the pain, to disappear down the drain

As it takes the salts, poisons, and sins with it.

I have to say, I did feel a sight better after my little bath this morning and from there I commenced to partake in a new twist on a borrowed recipe from Nutiva for breakfast-but the only part of the recipe I used was the basic chia pudding, this time it set up properly and other than a strange sort of mouth- feel from what I supposed was the type of coconut milk I used, ( I used So Delicious Brand Culinary Coconut Milk) it was pretty good! To that, I added some flax, frozen blueberries, and some coconut-chia granola and it was a yummy, breakfast pudding indeed!

My first proper chia pudding breakfast bowl.
Not the required canned, full-fat coconut milk

After a teary night last night because I was feeling so out of sorts, I’m hoping for a better day today. I’m trying to detox and prepare for my pre-op the best I can and part of that is getting the house ready for me coming home and not being allowed to bend over or lift heavy items. So what I’m supposed to do if put the things I need to use every day at eye level, tomorrow I will wash the bed sheets and tomorrow night, I will shower with the special kit containing the only soap I’m to use (you have to scrub from chin to toes for two minutes) and then crawl in a clean bed after also removing all of my jewelry.

Thursday morning I will be up rather early to arrive at the hospital by 5:30am, I think surgery is actually scheduled for 7:30am. I know I’ll be in good hands but I can’t stop thinking about all the what-ifs. They are messing with my spinal cord after all, as well as replacing two of my discs in my neck, I literally will never be the same after that. (Hopefully, I will be better!) Maybe I’ll be stronger, pain-free and able to leap tall buildings in a single bound…oh wait, that’s Superman. Oh well, I’ll be more like the bionic woman by the time I have a new neck and a new knee!

I’m still feeling blue about the issues mentioned yesterday, yet I will strive for relaxation and try not to think of things that cause me guilt and sorrow and pray that after my surgery is behind me I can once again find the true joy of Christmas, which is having my WHOLE family together and that the gift-giving thing resolves on its own.

(Ugh! I just realized I never hit publish on yesterday’s post! I will post it first-then I will publish this one. Sorry folks, my bad.)

(If you click on the link, you can see the original recipe from Nutiva)

Why Am I Blue?

(This Post was originally written on 11/27/17)

I don’t know if it’s because of my upcoming surgery or the after-the-holiday-blues, but I have been just like the weather today, all over the place. The temperature started out in the low 50’s and it has warmed up to the upper 70’s.  Unsure of what to do with myself but knowing I should be doing something, I abandoned thoughts of writing this morning after hours of reading and researching got me nowhere. I just didn’t feel it today and sometimes I guess that’s the way it goes

I did read all of my paperwork and pre-op instructions over coffee this morning.

As usual, I did a load of laundry, cleaned the kitchen and puzzled over what we might eat for dinner, then this afternoon I thought about taking a walk and ended up raking leaves and acorns instead…even though the wind has been ridiculous all day! I can’t stand looking at my newly decorated front porch with leaves all over it, so I tried to clean it and the beds up somewhat. My neighbors must have thought me a total idiot, fighting the wind and re-raking and sweeping over and over until I had a trashcan full of the fruits of my labor. I’m sure if I looked out there right now, the porch would be covered in leaves all over again!

One of my piles of leaves and acorns

Afterwards, hot and sweaty, I came in and was finally able to write a few words of a short story for The First Line.  That was not my initial thought for a writing job this morning, I wanted to find a job that paid sooner but that was not how things worked out. Mainly because I didn’t much feel like writing and was totally uninspired.  You can’t force it you know. Sometimes you just have towalk away, do something else and collect your creative thoughts or wait until you have the energy to make it happen.

I’m also a little bummed because even though I know that Christmas is about being together with your family, I like to buy presents for everyone and we made the decision this year to just go out to dinner or something instead.  Add to that a bit of family drama that’s going on and you understand the possible reason for my Monday blues. Why I didn’t even put on make-up today! I’m so glad you weren’t counting on me to provide your motivation for today, I would have failed you miserably.  It doesn’t help my mood to be constantly hit with a bazillion cyber-Monday emails since I’m thinking why bother? We aren’t buying presents anyway. I guess we will be buying a couple here and there but you know what I mean.

My ankle is still sore from rolling it the other day, so I guess it’s a good thing I didn’t walk anyway. Hopefully, I worked off my lunch raking leaves in the yard, I sure expended the little bit of energy I mustered up for the task. I just hate that I put on a few pounds over the holiday, but I’m sure I’m not the only one 😉

Ok, rant over, I hope you all had a better, more productive (if that’s what you wanted) Monday than me. Have a nice evening and hopefully I won’t blow away while sitting out on the patio. 🙂

Could You Relax for Twenty Minutes?

Corners and Cobwebs

A cobweb has formed in the corner of the tile work o my tub!
It’s the biggest shopping season of the year. Stress, anxiety, guilt, eating and drinking all sorts of indulgent food and alcohol, all lead to a toxic soup inside your body. I know a way to rid your body of all that bad build up, and it feels great too…but you have to be able to relax for at least 20 minutes, preferably 40!

Could you do it? Well, I did it myself this morning, in an effort to not only detoxify but help with my sore joints (remember my twisted ankle? Still hurts) and muscles and reduce inflammation. It’s called taking a bath with Epsom salts, and they have been used for hundreds of years by many different cultures.

It may be difficult for you to imagine relaxing in a hot tub for 20-40 minutes, however,  you will not be sorry once you’ve done it. The benefits are many:

  • inexpensive remedy
  • removes salts and toxins
  • allows magnesium and sulfates to enter the body through the skin
  • improves health conditions like gout, athlete’s foot, sprains, bruises, chronic pain
  • improves blood flow, muscle,  and nerve function and reduces inflammation

I read this article on Epsom salts last night while perusing Pinterest at a site called Healthy Holistic Living. She said that you need to allocate at least 40 minutes because the first 20 minutes help the detoxification process and the next twenty minutes allow for the absorption of the minerals magnesium and sulfates. She gives a chart based on weight to know how much Epsom salts to add to your bath, mine was about a cup and a half. To that, I also added about twenty drops of frankincense (the aromatherapy grade) to help me be still and grounded.

You are ideally supposed to rest for an hour or two after the bath which is what makes it great for right before bed, but since I have such bad arthritis, she said in my case it was better to get out and start moving around. Also, the health conditions mentioned above improve with continued use, so buy a decent sized bag and make it a habit. I know I will! It felt so nice and while it didn’t immediately help my aches and pains, I felt relaxed and sort of rejuvenated afterward.

While laying there, I turned my head from side to side and discovered a rather well-developed cobweb, I guess I’ve been lacking in the housekeeping department. Oh well, I’ll get to that later. Do try a bath in Epsom salts, maybe before bed, you might also add some lavender essential oil and you will surely sleep the best you have in some time. Let me know how it worked out for you!

 

 

 

Enjoying The Holiday

Ok, so I took a little break from writing to prepare and enjoy the holiday with family and friends! I have enjoyed the time very much and as I prepare for my upcoming surgery, I’ll take all the slack time I can get!

Ok.  It hasn’t all been relaxation either. Cleaning, cooking , and today we went ahead and started decorating for Christmas in case I’m not up to it after surgery. That meant I had to find a place for everything we had placed on our temporary shelves and Dave had to clean the garage to get the shelves in there and make them useable.

Halfway done

We both did a good job but Dave’s effort was much appreciated!!

Dave got the garage cleaned in record time!

That made room in the dining room for the Christmas tree! (Pictures to come)

We enjoyed a nice dinner with family yesterday, even though a few were missing. Everyone contributed a little something and we all ate til we were stuffed. After everyone went home, Dave and I decided to check out a new Netflix series called Godless, starring Jeff Daniels about the old west and a villain bent on revenge and the good guy, an unlucky hero who befriends the supposed town harlot and her son. I’m not used to seeing Jeff in the villain role which he plays very well.

Dave was off today, so we went running ur errands and got more stuff to decorate with. Then, even though we had plenty of leftovers, we found ourselves on Northside and decided to dine at our favorite Mexican place, Los Vicaros. Now I’m stuffed again, tree is half decorated (but loooking pretty goood) and we are watching The Grinch.

Before

I will take after pics and post them soon. I had to move the dining table out of the way so I could place the tree in front of the window. Then,  I made use of the trees Dad gave me last year for the front porch, they look pretty with only lights on them!

I truly hope you all had a relaxng, delicious holiday spent with family, friends, and feel as blessed as we do! Happy Holidays! 🦃🎄

Why Be Organized?

Morning everyone and how are you on this chilly Monday morning? Oh my goodness, I just realized I have not blogged since last Tuesday (on this one anyway) and that is one reason I should be more organized!! If I was sticking to an editorial calendar, these things would not happen.

Last week was super busy with my writing though. I entered several pieces in various places, hoping to earn/win some money…wish me luck! I took a test for Compose.ly to try to find more paid work, I submitted a poem to Winning Writers for their Wergle Flomp Contest (I wrote about entering contests over on my website), and I entered the Barefoot Writer’s Essay Contest who’s theme this month spoke to what we are grateful for.

My new red hat before adornment

It wasn’t all work though, I also went to to the movies with my new lady’s group and saw Murder on the Orient Express. This time we went as the over 40/50 group, but next time we get together it will be as ladies of The Red Hat Society! Yes! I became its newest member last week! Dave and I went shopping for me a new red hat and I’m happy to say we found one! It was at a new store in the mall called Dana, it is a nice felt hat like one we found at a different store which cost $50, mine was under $20! Now all that’s left to do is decorate it up, add some purple flair and I’ll be good to go! I spent some time creating a board on Pinterest called “Red hat ideas” if anyone wants to see it. (visit my other boards while you’re there 🙂 )

I went and had my lab work for tomorrow’s appt. with my kidney dr.

Today I’m supposed to go have my pre-op for my surgery, but I’m going to call and make sure it’s not too early. My surgery is on the 30th and in the old days, one of the tests they’ll be running, a PT/PTT was only good for three days. In addition, I want to make sure they can’t go ahead and use the results from some of the lab work I already took. Why pay twice? (I probably won’t get away with that)

I also did a job for Crowd Content Saturday morning because I tried to do it Friday night, had computer issues and lost the whole thing! Now, I may be making small change, but I had already done a ton of research, so when it was still available Saturday morning, I jumped on it! I spent way too long on it, but it’s done yea!

Well, I’m off to see what else I can get done, it will be another busy week since we are hosting Thanksgiving. Writing, reading, crocheting (I started a new scarf), cleaning and cooking…just like everyone else I’m sure! Y’all have a wonderful day and I hope to see you later on the patio! 🙂

 

 

 

Why Enter Writing Contests?

Morning everyone, I guess the better question would be, why not?

I enter writing contests from time to time for the chance to win prizes like cash, fellowships, and of course notoriety in the way of published works. Not to mention, jump-starting your career!

There are many places to submit work for contests:

Winning Writers-I just entered a poem in the Wergle Flomp Humor Poetry Contest and there was no fee! Plus, the possible prize is $1,000! Submit now through April 1, 2018

If one looked at Writing Career, one might find a plethora of interesting writing contests with prizes in the $10,000 range without fees!

We all want to make money for our writing, yet sometimes the creative bug hits, and we can’t help wondering if we have the right stuff to impress the judges and take a shot at winning some impressive money.

There are contests for poetry, fiction, non-fiction, feminists, and freelancers unable to work. If you are a writer, there is something for you, just browse their list that is put together by Brian Scott, editor-in-chief.

Another website for writers,  AWAI,  does a copywriting challenge and the top prize is $10,000! AWAI stands for American Writers & Artists Inc. and they have training programs on teaching the art of copywriting. They are the ones that inspired me to start writing from the beginning. This isn’t so much a contest as a challenge to write the best sales copy.

Another place I found challenges/contests for money with is Prose. Once you sign up, search for contests with monetary prizes and join the challenge. Many genres to choose from.

The downside to all of these contests is waiting for months to find out if you’re a winner. In addition, you need some kind of tracking system so you know what contest you entered and when. For me, it’s my trusty calendar, but for you, it might be a handy writing tool like Google Calendar, an app for iPhone or Android users.

The bottom line for us writers is, you’ll never know if you don’t try so, go on…what have you get to lose? More fitting, what have you got to gain?

 

What A Beautiful Tuesday!

Morning everyone, or should I say afternoon? I have a lot to do today so I will make it quick for now. I got my lab work done this morning for next week’s appt. with Dr. Epstein, my wonderful nephrologist. Pretty sure he is from Jersey or New York, he is such a card and also a snazzy dresser!

Handsome devil too, although he is a little whiter up top these days.

Yes, he is from New Jersey, as I just read in his bio. I really enjoy our twice-yearly get-togethers, I’m hoping I can keep this up forever!

After my lab work, I made a QT for some coffee, and went to visit Stephanie and drop off my spare key so it could be used by Aimee! (I just wrote a rap!)

Her dad and I had a nice visit and caught up on her mom’s health. Lynn (her dad) offered some advice on my wig but said he liked it, and I found out his neighbor Fred is not adjusting to his new place in Minnesota so well. Steph looks good and I’m so happy things are working out well with Aimee and she was the perfect person to fill my spot and give Stephanie the care and companionship she really needs. I miss everyone but I’m so glad I live close enough to visit often. Sadly I took no pictures to share, maybe next time!

I saw this quote on Facebook and copied it to my timeline, as it has meaning for not only me but one of my boys as well: actually, all my boys!

Don’t let fear hold you back from accomplishing your goals and dreams

I think I have been guilty of this myself but I think it applies to my son right now as he questions his job and his relationships.

I am looking forward to tomorrow’s meeting with my new girlfriend group-the over 40/50 girls who are also members of the RHS (Red Hat Society). We are going to see the new adaptation of Murder on the Orient Express at Movie Tavern. Which reminds me, I need to go call them again and see if I can finish the process of joining up. Then I will be a Red Hat too!

If anyone wants more info on how to join either group, please call Laura Smallman at (817) 583-9420 or The Red Hat Society 1-866-386-2850 (toll-free)

Membership to the RHS is open to all women of any age now. Go have some fun!

By the way, the weather is gorgeous outside today, I may have to get in a walk later, for now though, I’m happy with writing to the sound of nothing more than my windchimes busily tinkling away as the wind blows hundreds of acorns atop my roof, down my sidewalks and all over my lawn. :/

So I realized just now that I never hit publish this afternoon! Oops! My walk ended up being a furious hour and a half in the front yard, sweeping, raking, and bagging up leaves and acorns. We got upsetting news from my son about his court date today and that was my outlet. Say a prayer please that he is ok and that his continued battle for vindication turns out better than things did today. Goodnight all. 😕

New Week New Theme-What Do You Think?

*This post may include affiliate links, please see my disclaimer.

I thought I would change my theme and start with something fresh and clean this week. It’s getting close to the holiday and also closer to my surgery date (Nov 30) so I was feeling like a change. I think it has one of those rolling headers that changes every time you look at it.

I also changed my profile pic on Facebook to the selfie in my new wig, since I will be wearing that a lot now that the weather is cooling down. When it’s warm, I’ll opt for a hat. I even tried a wig AND a hat one day, not bad!

I had a record writing week last week (according to Grammarly) and today I’m just not feeling it. Ever have one of those days? My challenging but interesting jobs at Crowd Content dried up and I looked for work for a while and then decided to take a break and clean up the house. Last week I blogged every single day without even thinking about it or trying hard for that matter, and today I’m just bleh. Grammarly is a great app to have because it corrects your bad grammar or other writing mistakes as you’re typing, so there isn’t as much self-editing to do! I posted my results on Facebook since I got a productivity achievement and all, lol.

Grammarly gives you weekly updates on your progress.

I did go to Bunco Saturday night, and Jenna Lasanta’s baby shower yesterday! So I have a couple of pics to share…I won’t share them all since some of you see/follow me on facebook, you’ve probably seen them already. Jenna is the wife of my son’s high school friend Ryan Lasanta.

Jenna and her sweet mom Donna
Snacks for the guests
Ryan getting his grill on before the big game
All the kids wanted to feel the baby moving, so cute!

A good time was had by all, we left early because we were doing family dinner last night. There was only five of us but we got all the gumbo, lol. I’m off to fold clothes and get more writing inspiration. Have a happy Monday everyone!

 

*Disclosure: Mentions of associated products, services, or businesses within the content of this blog may or may not be noted as an affiliate in every reference. I only choose to promote products, services, or businesses that I have used and or trust.

 

 

 

 

Gettin Wiggy With It

Happy Friday everyone!

I know it’s late, but I recently got home after getting my wig trimmed and wanted to do a big reveal, lol. I’m silly, I know. I’m going to show a before and after the trim.

Me before the trim
A selfie of me after the trim

I think it looks better, don’t you? I love this new wig, this one is from Paula Young, cost a fraction of what the longer, darker one cost, and is a feather light weight-which I really love. Still, it will take time to get used to seeing myself with so much hair on my head, plus dealing with the fact that it is kind of itchy after a while.

I got a couple of things accomplished today, another job for Crowd Comtent-sad to say that even after 3 hours of work it will pay less than $20, but that’s better than nothing and maybe that will drive me to seek out clients!

I also sent a story to The Southern Review Magazine, it will take several months to hear back from them. Wish me luck!!

Happy Veterans Day to all of you veterans out there! I am one too but I don’t feel I need recognition since I wasn’t in during war time. Yes, I’m proud I served my country but so many vets did so much more than that!

It is also the Marine Corp 242 Birthday! Happy Birthday USMC!!

Do You Have A Particular Morning Routine?

If So How Does That Help Your Productivity?

I just read an article on Medium by Annie Atherton about 7 things she tried to see which routine she liked best and what it did to help her productivity in the mornings. It was very interesting, but she doesn’t work from home, which has its own set of unique challenges. According to Romper, here 10 reasons working from home is harder than working in an office.

  1. You have to be more disciplined
  2. There are more distractions
  3. You are never “not working”
  4. Everyone thinks you’re available
  5. There’s little incentive to shower
  6. Staying overly organized is a necessity
  7. You hardly ever see anyone
  8. It can be stressful on relationships
  9. You can’t blame others
  10. Exercise becomes that much more important

My problem is that I try to cram all of that in on a daily basis, and I’m failing miserably. Like, little to no exercise, no organization whatsoever, no discipline some days…hey, just keeping it real here. My dogs are distracting, my constant worry that I’m not keeping up with the chores, and yes, sometimes even my family, although I’m happy to do whatever they need, all of that hurts my productivity, but family is everything and I will continue to do it,  and I find myself procrastinating at the important stuff (like making money with my writing) and wanting to only do the creative stuff, like writing stories, blog posts, poems or constantly reading and studying instead of actively searching for work.

So what is your morning routine and how do you keep it all together? Maybe your tips could help me out. I’m struggling the most with organization…you should see my “desk!” Papers and notebooks scattered everywhere, no idea what I’m doing day to day (not using my calendar, obviously), wanting to find clients and make money but worried my website is such a mess that I let that keep me from really reaching out to anyone. I’m a hot mess this morning.

My mind some days

Normally I have a certain kind of routine and if I stick to it, strange as it is, I do tend to get more done. That’s of course if I’m not distracted by the previously mentioned.

  • get up and immediately do my oil pulling routine
  • brush my teeth and take my meds
  • make my coffee or tea
  • feed the dogs
  • grab my phone, Ipad, e-cig and sit my butt in the chair

That is basically it on days I don’t feel the need to do chores or cook stuff or whatever else gets in the way of writing. Those days, the days I stick to the routine, I actually get more done. After what I deem is an appropriate amount of time spent writing, I will then get myself washed, made up and ready for the day-yes I mostly work in my jammies-go run errands or do what housework, cooking or whatever that needs to be done.

On a daily basis though, I have to contend with barking dogs, background noise, phone calls, nagging sense I should be doing something else, tinnitus so loud I have to have the tv on to drown it out, my dogs wanting my attention to play or cuddle with them, and a plethora of other annoyances (constant emails coming in), time sucks like facebook and medium. I’m sure I’m forgetting some things because my brain is all over the place this morning. The one thing I have to go out for today is to get my new wig trimmed so, I am about to go do that getting myself washed up and made up routine and get ready for my 1:15 appointment!

AAAAnnnd nevermind, I was just informed by Miss Sassy’s that I can’t go until tomorrow, she had a glitch in her morning too! no problem, she said because I had been so patient, she isn’ going to charge me! How sweet!

So see, now I can concentrate on getting some real work done…once I turn on some heat, my feet are freezing! Or maybe I’ll just get dressed first. And see, now the sun is shining and I’m thinking, “I really should go out and rake up all those acorns.” I’ll let you know how it all turns out. Stay tuned, I’ll see you tomorrow (maybe) from a very chilly patio!