Welcome to my blog. Thanks for coming! One day I hope my little piece of internet real estate will be home to lots of family photos, pictures of my scrapbook and card art, with some random thoughts and memories posted on a somewhat regular basis. Mostly my world is very predictable, but occasionally some excitement will find me, so visit often. Who knows what useful (or useless) information you may find here.


Saturday, February 14, 2015


Another Valentine’s Day has come, and has almost gone.  We unattached folk often refer to it as Single Awareness Day. (Or Happy 50% Chocolate Tomorrow Day).  

It is true –  I’ve had more Single Awareness Days as an adult than I have had as someone’s Valentine.  I had pretty much gotten used to it, and learned to enjoy making it a special day for my daughter, and later my grandchildren.  Then along came my Prince.  Our first Valentine’s day was so much fun!  When I opened the card from him I almost burst with excitement, and started laughing.  When he asked me what was so funny, I told him to open his card.  We had gotten each other the exact same card!!  We were married a few months later and I felt like the luckiest girl on the planet.  Y’all know the story, so I won’t revisit that.  Except to say the following Valentine’s day found me terribly upset, and ready to forget the whole thing.  I had not bought a card, and had no intention of even acknowledging the day (nor had he, before leaving for work that morning.)  Around 3:00 that afternoon, my stepson asked me what was wrong, and I burst into tears and had a very long heart-to-heart with him, bearing my soul about a deep concern.  By some miracle, he was able to convince me that my fears were unfounded, and my concern unnecessary.  At the last minute I ran out to The Prince’s favorite restaurant for his favorite takeout meal, set a special table with flowers and heart confetti, lit some candles, put some nice music on the stereo, and dimmed the lights for a nice romantic dinner.  A quick shower before he got home from work and I was ready for the evening. 

Several weeks later, there was a very unpleasant event, and the fear returned in full force.  A few short months later, I was devastated to learn that my concerns did indeed have merit, and my marriage was over.  My Prince turned into a Toad. 
Is it easy to endure Single Awareness Day?  For sure, it’s the butt of a lot of jokes, and brings to memory happier times now lost that can make me sad, but like every other difficulty in life, it seems to get more bearable each time it comes around.  The first one was kind of like ripping open an old wound, but with each passing year, the scar is a little lighter, and the wound not as visible. 

Because I work at home, I’ve become somewhat of a self-imposed recluse… and I rather like it.  I haven’t totally lost my social graces, and do enjoy being around others, but at times I have to almost force myself to leave the house (which means getting out of my pajamas and wearing shoes).  I know I’ll enjoy the outing once I get there, but making the effort to be sociable is sometimes a bit much. 

Since the early 90s, I have been a wall builder.  I have many friends and acquaintances.  I’m totally blessed
in that regard.  I love many, and am loved by many.  But as the years go by, I find that not only am I a wall builder, but my walls have layers.  (Think – the Pentagon – haha).  There is definitely an inner sanctum, where very few are allowed to enter.  Of course my family is always there.  But I need fewer fingers than one hand to name the other people allowed into my safe place.  My True North people.  And I can probably count with less than ten fingers the number of people in the next layer.  That’s not to say I don’t love my other friends, I do.  I love them all.  Just in a different way, ya know?

There was a time in my life when a bad decision led to my being disloyal to people I loved.  My biggest mistake, and my greatest regret ever.  That’s not who I am.   A price was paid by many, and I still pay it every day.  For me to say lack of integrity, dishonesty, and disloyalty is something I abhor and cannot tolerate might seem difficult to understand for those whom I have hurt.  Perhaps it is a result of my own indiscretion that I now find it so appalling.  And when I see it in others, it reminds me of what I inflicted on loved ones during a very dark time in my life.

Grace, mercy, and forgiveness are amazing.  I have both received them, and I have given them.  I am especially grateful that my heart is not bitter, and I am not a grudge-bearer to those who have hurt me. I am grateful, as well, that the hearts I destroyed hold no bitterness toward me.  Well worth the time it took to get to this place.

Forgiving doesn’t mean forgetting.  If I punch you in the face and give you a black eye, you may forgive me.  But you’ll remember it every time you look in the mirror for a few days.  And the next time we’re together, if I raise my arm to swat a fly, you’re probably gonna duck.  Because you won’t forget that time I slugged you.  And you’re gonna protect yourself from me doing it again.  Same with me.  There are those whose betrayal cut me like a knife.  Friends, co-workers, relationships. I forgave, but will protect myself from it happening again.  

Hence the walls around my heart.  It’s safe in my innermost sanctum, and if someone isn’t there already,
there’s probably not much hope of getting there.  Not that it’s a place most people would want to be.  Hahaha.  It’s the place where I do the ugly cry, and open up my deepest feelings.  Right outside the place where Jesus lives, is this inner sanctum of mine.  It’s not made of red paper with glitter and lace, rather of intricately-formed muscle that forces the life blood through my veins, and is considered by many to be the center of our emotions. 

No wonder the shape of a heart is the symbol for Valentine’s Day.  It is from our hearts that we love.  And it is in our hearts that we who are sad, feel the loneliness the most.

For the last three V-Days, DJ has made sure that I am remembered and made to feel special.  Cards and meaningful gifts that make me feel appreciated and loved, and less inclined to be SAD (on Singles Awareness Day -SAD-, get it? Ha!)  The sweetest card ever, and Reece’s (my fave) hearts made my day extra special today, as well as sharing a couple of pots of coffee on this chilly morning.  J  Love you, DJ!!!!

I recently made a new friend, who has already become an amazing source of encouragement, especially with regard to finishing the book I started several years ago.  There are those people born with the gift of exhortation, and Mimi exudes it beautifully with kind words, thoughtful gestures, and a call to action.  What a surprise to find in the mail this week a Valentine’s card and a beautiful angel who now watches over me from atop my desk.  Thank you, Mimi, for thinking of me.  You only recently heard my story, because you asked me about my dreams, what makes me tick, and what events brought me to where I am today. And it was so kind of you to remember me in this way. That I was so compelled to share my story with you, a person “outside” my walls, speaks to your gift of connecting with people.

Leyliebug brought me a handmade card that she made while spending the day here yesterday.  Whitney, Dustin, and the children are the brightest spot of each day, and I treasure the sweet things that Mary, Leyland, and Corey say and do for their Greemaw – who loves them so very much. My life is richly blessed.


Single Awareness Day will always be a glaring reality every time cupid starts floating around with that stupid bow and arrow.  But I know that with the passage of even more time, it can again become a source of happiness, and an opportunity to do for others.  I remember before The Prince (aka The Toad) came along, I once sent a Valentine’s card to all the widowed ladies in my church.  I was astounded at their response.  In the end, I don’t know who was more blessed – the wonderful ladies, or myself – because of the joy it brought me to see them so excited.  It’s really true – doing for other people helps you take your eyes off yourself, and focus on their needs rather than your own.    

Only an hour or so left of SAD 2015. We've made it through another one!  While I’m sure I’ll never take off
my arrow-proof vest, and will hide from Cupid at all costs, I’m thinking that in the future, my energy will be better spent in making sure other lonely hearts are made to feel as blessed as I have been made to feel today.

If you have a special someone to love, I hope you were able to enjoy some sweet time today, and show special appreciation.  I challenge you to make every day Valentine’s Day, and make sure a day doesn’t pass without your partner knowing how much he or she is loved by you.  Never make them question.  Show them every day.

If you didn’t have that special person with whom to celebrate the day, I’m sending a special hug your way.  Though it is a rather silly, overly-commercialized holiday, I understand and have experienced the emotions it can invoke for those who are lonely.  But it’s almost over!  No more cupid crap til next year!  Tomorrow is a new day!! 

And Glen Burns says it’s gonna snow in Georgia!  So go out tomorrow, buy your milk and bread, and pick up a few bags of chocolate at 50% off!

Saturday, February 7, 2015

Fifty Shades of Lego Bricks

My "I'm not a prude" status may be in question these days.  I'm all about live and let live, and don't judge others, etc.  I'll be happy to share my thoughts to anyone who cares to know them, but in doing so, always try to respect the opinions of others. The past few years have found me a bit more passive, and less likely to opine on subjects that used to get me all worked up.  (As evidenced by the lack of posts in my blog lately.) Every now and then something will ruffle my feathers, but the opportunities to post seem rare these days.

While doing chores this morning, I happened to hear a report on GMA about a new movie trailer for Fifty Shades of Grey.  Using Lego figures.  I didn't read the book, and I have no interest in the movie.  It wasn't the "Fifty Shades" that caught my attention, that's everywhere these days, rather it was the "Lego" part that intrigued me to listen.  After watching  it and doing a little research, I learned that the video was created by Antonio and Andrea Toscano, 'stop-motion animators', who have apparently made other YouTube movie trailers.  I suspect this one will catapult them into at least 15 minutes of YouTube fame.

If you know my grandson Corey, you probably know he is a HUGE Lego fan.  He loves the Lego movies and videos, and enjoys watching YouTube reviews that demonstrate putting together the complicated sets.   He has several of the bigger sets, but is quite content to play with random pieces, and loves collecting the 'people' figures. He could entertain himself for hours on end with a box full of plastic bricks and Lego people while watching those videos.  (Hold your judgment... he also watches 'engineering' type videos that explain how different machines work, how to build stuff, and that sort of thing.  The boy is destined for greatness, I tell you!!  I guess he inherited that from Pop, who can sit for hours and watch how things are made, and what makes them work.  A fair trade, I'd say, for a little kid-friendly entertainment.)  No doubt, the Lego videos are his favorite.  All this to say:  If he sees a Lego video  that he hasn't watched, he's gonna click on it. He can spell some of the things to do a specific search like Lego Ninjago (I know, right?!?), but sometimes he just types in Lego.  And we know what happens when you type one word into a search engine.  Not always kid-friendly. While parental controls are set on all their devices, there are things (this video included) that are evidently not tagged, as they pop right up, regardless of settings.  Their internet activities are carefully monitored, but if I walked by and saw him watching a Lego video, I wouldn't think anything unusual or inappropriate about it.  Not so much any more, I guess.

So after hearing about the new Lego movie trailer, I looked up the video on YouTube to see it for myself.  If you're a Fifty Shades fan, and a Lego fan, and you're an adult, I suppose it might be considered clever, and really benign as far as "sex scenes" go.  Really, it's just plastic figures.  Certainly the content would go over the heads of most kids Corey's age, and I doubt it would permanently scar children who may see it.  The innuendos might be noticed by an older age group - but those kids are busy watching whatever other thing might be trending right now.

My point is - WHY?  Is it really necessary to permeate sex into children's playtime?  I know, I know, it's everywhere.  And I understand parental controls, and the dangers of exposing kids to the internet.  I am not about censoring - I advocate "if you don't like it, don't watch it".  I know there are evil people in dark places who would lure innocent children into sex trafficking, child pornography, etc.  While those things are horrible and unthinkable, this is not about that.  

For some very observant kids, like Corey, I can hear the questions now:  Greemaw, why is that Lego man scowling like that?  Why is that Lego lady handcuffed?  Why is he attacking her in the elevator? Why is that Lego man laying on top of that Lego woman?

Believe me.  He much prefers Batman, Avengers, ninjas, public service figures, and superhero Lego people. As it should be for a 6-year-old kid.  I wish Antonio and Andrea would learn to play with people their own age, and leave the kids out of it.  As Mammy would say:  "It ain't fittin, it just ain't fittin. Hmph. Ain't fittin'"

There's no denying that sex is everywhere, and as adults, we have to be on guard 24/7 to keep children from accessing forms of media that are age-inappropriate.  I get that.  The responsibility is ultimately up to the parents, or other adults charged with caring for the children.  It just perturbs me that something enjoyed by countless children all over the world has become yet another tool to bring sex to the forefront of what should (IMO) be toys that promote creativity and dexterity.  And I know, I know - the video is not targeting children.  I get that too.  But I gotta agree with Mammy - I just think it ain't fittin'.

I guess next we'll see videos of Hello Kitty pole dancing or twerking.

So there you have it. I guess my prude level has indeed gone up a notch.  Funny how that happens when it involves something near and dear to your kids or grand kids.  The question I ask myself is this:  If I didn't have my own personal grandson who will  likely (accidentally) see this video, would I even be thinking about it, much less stop my chores and blog about it? Hmmmm.  Maybe being a prude isn't such a bad thing after all, if it means keeping sex out of the children's playroom.  It's already coming at them from all angles.  But, seriously?  Legos?

Rant over.