Friday, February 28, 2014


End of the month ~ hooray!  I made it with my sanity and with all of my basic needs met yet again.  I would call that a win/win situation for sure!  Pending death or total downfall today I can successfully put this month behind me and start all over again!

It is my ultimate challenge each month ~ I wish I enjoyed it as much as I do my writing challenges ~ and I love those!  I do get a bit of satisfaction at making it each month and celebrate the fact of it.  Each month brings it's own challenges to be sure.

Just this morning I woke up and my email account had been hacked!  Someone sent out download links to everyone on my mailing list.  To be sure I do not clean out my contacts ever so if you have ever gotten an email from me since 1999 you probably received one!

All I can say is DON'T OPEN IT! SCAN YOUR COMPUTER!  Please do accept my most sincere apologies in advance if it happened to you!  I had been wanting to change my AOL password anyway but didn't have the original (1999) info from when I started the account so that was out this was a bonus in disguise.  How's that for a silver lining?

So this week has been fun and I have been writing.  Not sure if you have been following my tale UNEXPECTED or not.  I have been having fun with it.  Pondering the fate of our character.  Last night as I was having dinner, I tried to pump my son for some feedback ~ ideas but he was no help.

I have been thinking hard about her fate.  Should I do one more or really take it somewhere else as I think some more?  I am just winging this story as you may or may not know.  I do not write by an outline.  Things write themselves.

That is why it has taken me a minute to decide.  Filtering out my ideas with what may or may not work.  New and challenging indeed!

In the meantime I wrote another Challenge.  A "Once Upon a Time" beginning which is no happy fluffy piece. The dark theme just carried over and this was another piece which I had a totally different idea which was light and fluffy which took a back seat.  I am including the link in case you missed it on Glipho!

I am a "live in reality" kinda girl.  Well, I got a dose of it with the news this week and had to get the overload it created out of my head.  Too much reality is never a good thing ~ especially too much media.  I have enough trouble dealing with my own reality and when I get too much negative information that is the world/country type this is the result these days I guess!

Another busy weekend and week coming up.  Temperatures are cold again with the Polar Vortex and "feels like temp" far below zero.  I took advantage of that and have been hanging at home in my p.j.'s for a couple of days.

Today, despite the temps I have to go out in the world.  Oh well!  I think I can manage alright. The sun looks warm and I am hoping it feels just a bit warm on my face as I walk to my destinations!  March is quickly approaching and I am wondering if this is the comes in like a lion leaves like a lamb month or not ~ (still on my first cup of tea writing this so my brain is a bit fuzzy still!)

It has been nice having my boy back home as well.  He keeps me on my toes for sure!  I have woken up to a tea in the microwave for me three days in a row now.  That means they are good and strong just the way I like it, leaving me to reheat and add my sugar and cream!  Life is nicer when you have surprises! (of the good kind not the hacked kind!)

Keep warm, safe and smiling! 

Tuesday, February 25, 2014


What a busy end of week it turned out to be just in the nick of time as I was getting tired with my own company since my son went to his brothers for longer than I expected!

I was fortunate to receive an email which had a couple of volunteering opportunities available locally on Thursday which I quickly snatched up.  I got out in the world on Saturday and took a walk since it was so nice.

I headed ~ where else ~ but North Street ~ skirting puddles the size of lakes and small quarries and walked in the street a bit to avoid large quantities of snow in my path which lead to avoiding melty messy runoff in the street!

I made my way towards A-Mart and got a couple of shots of Peter Gordon's billboard and then to the library ~ no books since I couldn't concentrate with the golfers I told you about before.

I was bored and wrote a few things which I shared here, but didn't write here.  I feel slightly unfaithful to my Blogger Blog.  I have been enjoying the creative writing aspect of writing so much lately.  I have been wondering where my imagination had gone.  Like dreams it seems to have taken a vacation, but I hope to jump start it really soon!

I passed up game night and a brunch ~ things are picking up a bit socially anyway!  I got mentally prepared for Sunday as an usher.  Going over what Black and Whites I had in my closet.  Settling on Grey slacks and one of my favourite white blouses.

I was a waitress for many years, so my closet doesn't lack black and white.  I have been avoiding black clothing (except my velvet) for a while so it was fun having some choices to choose from.  My friend Aaron wanted a picture which was funny on a couple of levels.

This whole "selfie" craze is insane!  Before it was popular my father, brother and yes even my sons when they were younger used to point the camera and click (this was in days of film) how many selfies do I run across which they took?  Many!

I am not a big fan of selfies and as such I do not have too many.  I tried to take a few but they all come out looking goofy ~ I was too busy concentrating on the camera ~ so serious ~ that it was difficult to get a good one!

It took me a while to realize you can aim the camera at yourself and do not need a mirror to shoot through ~ the darn flash was so annoying with the mirror!

I left for the Theatre unsuccessful with the picture.  I arrived a bit early and took a walk on the strip to kill some time as we were to be there an hour ahead of the show.  By all accounts at the pre ~ usher meeting it was going to be open seating and not too large of a turnout.

In reality, we opened the doors a bit early so folks could sit down.  Ushers hand out programs and we went through the 300 we had very quickly indeed and the seats were filling fast!  Part of the 10X10 Festival with local Dancers, I can tell you it was an amazing program indeed!

Not only do we have talented Musicians and Artists here in the Berkshires, we also have some wonderful dancers in all forms of the word!

Since I had wasted time with the selfies and I hadn't checked the battery levels on the camera ~ my bad ~ I only got a few pictures during the performance before the camera shut down to remind me one of the details I must remember to check on before I go to an event!

I did get some crowd shots before it died to show you the wonderful participation of support within the community.  The dance, music and costumes were amazing!  I think I have a new strong like and that is Dance as well as Theatre and Art!

I made my way home after the event in anticipation of dinner and shows with my son!  I arrived and put some potatoes in the oven to go along with the pork chops.  Nothing like a good oven baked potato I always say!

I put the battery on the charger so I could download my pictures.  I had gotten some advice on how to fix a necklace with a crystal that fell out and pics needed to be sent!  Of course I was still trying once charged to get a "selfie" for my friend as well and after going blind by the flash I gave up!

I was greatly saddened after calling the boys to find that I was flying solo, so I opted out of the chops and just enjoyed the two delicious baked potatoes myself before settling in with Downton Abbey.  I was not aware that it was the Season Finale!

It was good and left me hating Finales (I can never get enough of some productions!) I still want more Lost! Anyway, since it was two hours I missed other shows and opted for The Walking Dead at 11:00 so my son and I could still watch our shows together during the week thanks to On Demand.

Monday was, well, Monday.  It began well enough ~ then it had a bump ~ no hot water and I had to go in less than an hour!  I was glad I hadn't hopped into the shower expecting the warmth that my sore neck and back really needed ~ that would have killed me for sure!

I grumbled and complained and waited.  Fortunately it wasn't a 7 hour shortage today and I got in in the nick of time before having to run out to my appointment.  A quick hour session as it seemed to be over in the blink of an eye!

When I left the doctors it was beginning to snow right on schedule ~ the Weather Channel does get it right once in a while!  I was grateful for my warm coat as I made my way between wind gusts and snow flurries back home desiring a cup of tea to warm me up!

I phoned the boys and Dad answered ~ boys were still sacked out but my boy was coming home!!  I was happy!!!  (you all know I hate to be alone for long periods of time and 5 days was plenty!)  When he awoke he phoned to let me know he was on his way!

Late dinner but it was delicious!  Some computer time and before I knew it the hour was late!  We got in an episode of Shameless (and let me just say ~ bad Flip for treating Fiona that way!!!)  Of course I was beat after that but we watched a short show ~ Episodes before Tommy exited stage right and went to his computer, his game and his friends!

I went to sleep, pondering what the fourth installment of my story will be and fell asleep ~ waking during a dream, yes, I actually had one!  I miss dreaming so much!  I used to have wonderful and vivid dreams!  I think that is linked to imagination as well!  Can't have one without the other.  I hope to have both really, really soon!

Back to reality and the real world.  Obligations, responsibilities and priorities!  One of which is continuing to show the love to my blogger blog, as well as my other writing!  I have written another poem and another part of the tale I am telling (links included below)!

I am about done with my rambling.  Much to do this week and I am looking forward to it all ~ expected and unexpected!

Now that I look ~ I have been a bit busy!

Thanks for reading and have a great day!

Saturday, February 22, 2014


So today was a sunny and warm day in the Berkshires.  I ventured out to do an errand.  It was Nice to be outside in the sunshine which felt warm, despite the cool breeze.  I shedded a layer and just wished my gloves were in my bag where they should have been as I walked ~ maneuvering the lake sized puddles covering the sidewalks!

Despite the mess of the melting snow and ice (yes ~ I almost fell hard on a huge patch of ice as I walked through the Common ~ wondering why the city didn't lay down some salt for all the traffic the park had with the Senior Living behind it.

Grateful not to have fallen in the huge puddle next to the patch of ice ~ just my luck if I had!  I tried to locate the driest and safest places to walk.  At least no one had been around to see me as I did a quick shuffle to get my footing!

Although I was not going that way I took a walk down past A-Mart to check out Peter Gordon's Billboard. There it was, large as life facing the hospital!  I tried to take a picture but the sun was behind it and blinding me!!

I decided to hit the bank for the last $20 in the account ~ almost made it through the month ~ one more week ~ can I make it last?? That will be the beauty part of life!  I know I can, I know I can.  My normal worries never let up!

I walked up the West Street Hill and decided to go to the Library.  I needed a restroom and theirs was always clean.  They were playing minature golf as a fundraiser or something on the main floor and it was a bit unsettling.

I used the restroom and noticed my friend busy at work.  I popped over to say hello and was glad I did.  He is aka my Program Director ~ the person who enables me to have marvelous material to write due to our excursions.

He is very busy in the winter and we haven't had much of a chance to do anything fun together in a while.  Work, Work, work!!!  He is also a fan of skiing and outdoor activities which I do not participate in.  Spring is coming however and we will have more fun when the weather returns to Sunshine and warmer temps and no ice and snow!!!

After catching up I headed back through the maze of golfers and over to the New Release Section of the library.  Nothing caught my eye.  I left empty handed.  It was really difficult to focus with all the non library activity going on in there.  I enjoy the peace, quiet and tranquility of the place as a norm ~ not the chaos of kids and parents golfing!

I navigated down different streets towards home ~ avoiding the Park and it's death ice.  I was lucky once ~ I was not really eager to tempt fate and piss it off and get wet/hurt in the process.  Different sidewalks, bigger puddles!

I thought about New Ashford and how I only worried about times like this when I was driving backroads.  I always looked forward to the end of "mud season" so I could take my less used backroads.  I think I miss them more than anything (besides a car to drive down them in!)

I came home and was restless as hell.  I tried to play my newest addiction Kitchen Scramble, but my focus was not on it.  The quietness of the house was getting to me.  I went into the kitchen to prepare a tea and got sidetracked cutting chops out of the 10lb pork loin I had gotten the other day.

I was hungry as I had forgotten to eat the day before ~ again.  Normal when no one is around.  I think I would live on tea if my son did not live with me.  I cut, wrapped and froze the meet, cutting some pork medallions to saute for a snack/meal ~ completely forgetting about tea, which was the reason I had gone into the kitchen in the first place!

I gave up on the game and tried conversation.  I had a couple of good ones on line.  I was still bored out of my brain.  Sometimes the same gets old and boring and this was one of those times.  Not surprising.  I had made it through most of the winter without feeling this way!

I wrote a poem because I could and then worked on Part 2 of the Photo Challenge story because my readers seemed to want more.  That took all of twenty minutes!  So here I am, continuing writing my journal blog.

I figured I would share with you since I share you with my other readers on the other site I write on so here are the links if you are interested.  (my poem) (original ~ in case you missed it)

My fellow Glipo writers were very encouraging so I did not want to disappoint.  Since they are all fiction and I have been working my way to finding my way in writing through this blog I am kind of happy to be able to write something creative instead of journaling my activities, thoughts and feelings.

Feed back is always encouraged.  I am aware , for some reason that comments cannot be left on blogger (sorry about that) some can and others cannot ~ all I can say is I dunno what to say ~ if you can leave a comment do, if you can't and want to feel free to email me at with some kind of alert Blogger in the subject line as I am trying not to open mail from strangers (yeah right!)

Have a great day and thanks for reading!!!

Thursday, February 20, 2014

Photo Challenge #2

So we had to write 500 words on this photo ~ anything we wanted.  As I sat and looked at the picture ~ which is inviting to me personally kinda reminded me of home before I lost it, I wrote the following piece of Fiction.  I am not sure about the title but I had fun writing it!

I hope you enjoy reading it!  Feedback is always awesome and appreciated as a girl needs some encouragement when doing new things!  (HINT, HINT)  That means you ~ what do you think?? I want to know as I am interested!!!

Honesty is appreciated, do not just tell me what you think I want to hear!  I am a big girl and no words (negative) or otherwise are going to hurt my feelings or make me give up if you have not noticed by now!

Hope you enjoy the 500 word Photo Challenge ~ please do write a comment on the blog so I can find it or send it to my email address with a RE: FEEDBACK so I will open it and not just toss it!

I am getting weary of titling things as well, I think that is half my problem these days!!!  It seemed to fit so I went with it!

Thanks in advance for the feedback!  Again, send me an email or leave it on the Blogger sight, or comment on Glipho under my account there ~ GClawdia ~ thanks again and have a great night!


My last post was my 300th!  That means that I am very far off my goal of doing a post a day!  Oh well,  no biggie to me it just means that it is more challenging than I realized to write interesting things every day!

I was blessed yesterday to have a girls sleepover with my Grand daughter Ainsley, who is the light of my life and the sparkle in my eye!

She arrived after dinner full of more energy than I have ever seen her have!  Someone must have put a direct line of sugar in her veins!  I was happy to have Thomas in the house for that as she ran him ragged in about ten minutes!

When she finally settled down a bit, she conducted interviews for her club, which we were invited to be a part of.  It is a Cat Club and you must love Cats to be included.  She conducted the interviews in the living room sitting in the big chair, very professional with her paper and her questions - especially for six years old.

I listened as she interviewed Thomas, who despite running around with her, was not passing as one thought he might, I laughed to myself, not to detract from the serious atmosphere of the interview!  She dismissed him and I was at bat next.

She was easier on me, thankfully, having to stop once to direct Thomas out of the room during our interview (and penalizing him points as well!).  I was trying so hard not to laugh but it was very funny!

I did so well, I got a tour of the facilities (my apartment) from one end to the other, and then she dismissed me and returned to Thomas.  When they came through the computer room I was introduced as the maid (trying so hard not to laugh - but in reality that is part of my function as the head of household).

She had me join the tour as well, and Thomas kept getting into hot water through and through ~ finally he passed and we were both in the club!

Pat and his Dad came by and I don't know if they had to go through an interview ~ I was out of the room at that point.  She really loves her Uncles which I love!  She was so excited when Patrick phoned and said he was on his way!

They took Thomas and the men departed so it was just the two of us.  We got into creative mode and did some Art for a while and then we had a snack and settled down into our p.j.'s and watched some t.v.  At one point I looked over at her, stated to her that she looked tired ~ she said she was and the next minute she was sound asleep!

That reminded me of Thomas when he was a small child, always fighting sleep until the last second, watching and re watching The Nightmare Before Christmas (Jeff's favourite movie, and now Thomas'  and Ainsley's as well!)

I stayed up too late, as I always seem to do when she sleeps over ~ and when I retired The Lost Horizon was on t.v..  Ronald Coleman is another of my favourite actors of the time and I forced myself not to get interested lest I be up til 4 in the morning and soon I was also asleep.

Morning came and I got out of bed before she was up planning on having a cigarette and starting my tea before my day began.  I was looking at the weather when she popped in the room and laid on the couch, seemingly barely awake.

I turned on her Kids Channel and tossed a blanket over her thinking she was going back to sleep I headed into my computer room next to the living room and 20 minutes later she was poking her head through the door.

We had breakfast and did some pastel work in the dining room.  She had me playing hide and seek and I found the best hiding place ~ I had to give myself up since she couldn't find me and when it was her turn again I found her there!

We played some games and enjoyed our extended day together, deciding once we realized how warm it was to take a walk after we baked some chocolate chip cookies together, not ready for lunch at that time, despite it being after noon.

We headed out into the world.  Aimlessly walking with no destination in mind, we found ourselves at the Art Gallery.  She had never been to an Art Gallery before.  We were happy to find it opened and she took pictures of her favourite works and I took her picture in front of her very favourite works.

She like Peggy Rivers work so we walked over to the Berkshire Community College Intermodal Gallery to look at her show she has there, only to find that it was locked, so we took a look in from the outside before heading home for lunch.

I made burgers and she found a game to play.  She is very good at games, having played a winning game of Scrabble Junior in the morning, we played two games of Sorry before I had to get into the shower so I could be ready before her Mom came to get her after work.

I had plans to go to the Berkshire Museum for the Real Art Party at 5:30.  I puttered around for a bit and headed out arriving a little earlier than I would have liked.  The place filled up quickly and I had an opportunity to check out the 70 works of art on display, a smaller number than in previous years.

I chatted with old friends and new, enjoying the crowd and the atmosphere for the most part.  They began the auction ~ for $25 you got to pick your piece of 10X10 art.  They drew numbers and ticket holders got to pick their piece.

Michael Rousseau's piece was the very first piece taken and it was a steal at that price to be sure!  I am happy that I did not have a ticket because despite all the art there that I liked, I loved that piece and would give  a kidney to own it!

I went outside during the auction to find that it was rain/snowing so I talked to one of my acquaintances and we had a smoke and I decided I had better hit the road before the sidewalks got any icier than they already were!

It was very pleasant walking home with the snow falling more than the rain.  I got a couple more pictures of the Valentine Window and snuggled into my coat as I cut through the park.  I decided to veer off the shoveled path  and cut across the semi walked path towards my exit point.

I was very happy to return home, where I found a newsletter from Barrington Stage Co. with a couple of opportunities for me to help out this weekend and next week.  I am going to officially be an Usher on Sunday and help with a mailing on Monday.

I am looking forward to both!  I got a return call back from the organizer of volunteers who was delightful to speak with on the phone!  I look forward to returning to my capacity as a volunteer once again this season!  When I volunteer there during the season I am in the Greylock Room which is for the serious donors who come in during Intermission to enjoy a glass of wine or coffee and nibble on some candy ~ we are separate from the Ushers and other Volunteers, now I will be an official volunteer!

Life is good and I am so looking forward to so many things in the coming days, weeks and months, not the least spring and warm weather!!!

I made my latest deadline for my Writing Challenge and I do believe I have a couple of more challenges waiting for me to face so I am off to see where I can be creative next!                                                                                                            
Ainsley in front of her Favorite!Art by Joanie Palano Ciolfi

Thomas during his Cat Club Interview
Ms.  Interviewer



Tuesday, February 18, 2014


Tuesday....Who would have thought a Tuesday could be so very awesome and entertaining!  I headed upstreet and did my errands ~ meeting wonderful people along the way who brightened my day and boosted my ego!

Made plans with my son's Dad to attend the 10X10 opening reception at the The Lichtenstein Center for the Arts in Downtown Pittsfield MA. Later that evening.

We arrived shortly after 5:00 to a filling room with some of the Artists in attendance.  Meeting for the first time Douglas Paisley and Peter Gordon which was my absolute pleasure, along with my two favourite artists, Scott Taylor and Michael Rousseau. Missing Peggy Lipton who was not in attendance but whom I spoke with during First Friday ArtWalk the beginning of the month.

Joanie Ciolfi and I got formally introduced ~ I love to visit her studio when I am at the NU ARTs Gallery and Studios during Artwalk as well.  These lucky artists are just a few who are featured on Billboards in our area ~ which I definitely can walk to two of them that I know of and need to locate a ride to hunt down the rest!

Since it was National Wine Appreciation Day I had to sample the red, and it was delicious ~ enhancing the yummy morsels catered by the  Some very awesome food, art and company!

Bumping into Dave from New Orleans ~ a supporter of the arts and former Gallery Owner from New Orleans with whom I wrote last month about commiserating our mutual losses in the housing/recession this past month at the Whitney Gallery for the arts, we had a great time speaking with Douglas Paisley, artist whom I had also featured in my blog from ArtWalk learning his technique and planning a future trip to New Orleans during the Halloween Season which sounds like great fun ~ they think we were just talking but if I have my way that will be the next great adventure I make happen!

My co volunteer Michael accused me of being an artist ~ which I find funny ~ maybe in another life or in my future life I will once again resume my Art so I don't have to laugh in peoples faces!  I have the schmoozing down perfect and much to my son's Dad's dismay (thankfully he knew a couple of people besides me).

Tom's Dad and I left shortly before the end of the show ~ time had flown quickly and I was in my element this evening ~ enjoying every wonderful second of the show!  Walking home in the light snowfall the cold not so cold when wine is flowing through my veins (something I should investigate more regularly me thinks!) we parted ways a couple of blocks from my home.

When I got home, Thomas was actually awake and delivered the message that my eldest son had phoned a few times for me.  I rang him back up to find that I blew my chance to have my Granddaughter spend the night tonight and stay the day but got the option for Wednesday evening and all day Thursday ~ with plenty of time to attend the RAP at the Berkshire Museum on Thursday.

This is my week for sure!  What could be better than that???  I woke up feeling like a great weight had been lifted off my shoulder and it continued through the day and into the evening and should keep me going through the week now that it is filling up nicely!

I don't have to search for a silver lining to a dark cloud today!  Nothing but blue skies and rainbows!!!  Loving life and hope you are too!  Be sure to check out these wonderful artists via the internet or in person if you are local!

Monday, February 17, 2014


I gave in to my stubbornness today ~ throwing my Independence right out the door and broke down and asked for help.  I called my son and he was asleep, so I called the house and his Dad answered.  He listened to my plea and told me he could give me a ride to the store. I patiently waited until 4:30 and got a ride to the store.

I promised to be quick.  I hate shopping and stores.  We arrived and when we got out of the car I spotted one of my friends from the neighborhood I grew up in.  In reality, I recognized her Mom.  I looked in disbelief at my old friend and we greeted each other and hugged and chatted for a few minutes.

The conversation took longer than the shopping.  I hate putting people out, and I did not want to be too long in the store.  I think Bruce was surprised that I was done so quickly.  I was thankful for the ride there and back more than you know.

I was back in my house, food put away and much less stressed than I was when I was trying to decide where to go and how to get there.  Walking was just not an option today, especially to the expensive supermarket I would have had to walk to.

Instead I spent my food dollars very wisely and got more than I bargained for.  I got everything I needed in the reasonable store which would have cost me 2 or 3 times the amount in the other store.  Now I can rest easy for the rest of the month!

Life really sucks when your resources are limited and for the first time in a long time I find myself really feeling like I am up a creek without a paddle without any way to get where I need to go.  A horrible feeling and not one I like to feel to say the least!

I was so anxiety ridden I looked at my Writing Challenge which I have been thinking about for two weeks and could not concentrate on writing one single word ~ before you wonder ~ no ~ I have not written it, but I will be tomorrow when my head is fresh and clear and focused.

Instead I caught up on my friends blog ~ reading a weeks worth once again as I have been lax in most things.  Overburdened as I had let myself be!

After a wonderful time with  my Granddaughter on Saturday and Sunday where we had no plans and played the time by ear ~ it was nice.  We did Sand Art with the glow sand and when we ran out of sand because I misplaced (and overlooked it in the supplies) we used glitter to finish them off.

We had a nice dinner ~ Thomas slept through it and was still sleeping when we got into our jammies early and went to my room to watch t.v..  We both fell asleep ~ me first I am sure, and when I woke and went downstairs I was surprised to find Tom on his computer, making fun of me for being asleep when he got up.

He was still awake when we got up in the morning, hoping to make it long enough for breakfast, but fell asleep before it was ready!

No problem, it was almost a total girl sleepover!  We ate breakfast and decided to paint some ceramics I had laying around from days gone by.  She painted three before I finished one!  She is 7 and I am older and more dedicated to the details.  We had a nice and casual day until her parents showed up and scooted her away!

The one thing that keeps me rooted in my true self is my sweet granddaughter!  I feel most comfortable, as you know with family and she especially allows me that.  I always wanted a girl and after three boys I finally have one to interact with!

Today, however even the memories of our time could not keep the anxiety down.  I had no choice but to give in and ask for help.  I guess life is easier when you do.  It made my task easier, quicker and I am very grateful for the support even though I don't ask for it.

It is nice when someone has your back ~ Pat's Dad usually does have my back, especially through the toughest of times.  I don't think  I would have made it through Tom being in the hospital without his support everyday the wonderful Dad that he is to all of my boys!  Thanks Bruce for all of your help!

Sunday, February 16, 2014


Another Valentine's Day has come and gone.  I really did begin a post to publish, but it is too late now ~ I got busy with my two trips out in what the blizzard dumped on us picking up too many supplies for me to add another ounce to my load ~ I headed home from the first trip, put things away and promptly headed back out again.

I used to celebrate Valentine's Day when I was younger and this year I had decided to just cook dinner for Thomas (my son) and call it a day.  When I got home from my second trip he was actually awake just after noon.  His suggestion to watch some t.v. led to both of us falling asleep in front of the t.v. in the afternoon, him from a cold and me from utter exhaustion after my adventures trudging through the snow.

I woke up and baked some potatoes to go along with the steak I picked up for dinner.  The potatoes were cooked before he even woke up! (I wish I had the ability to sleep anytime and for great periods of time!)  Needless to say he go up after 8:00 and I had already eaten one potato while waiting for him.

My phone rang and my granddaughter phoned to wish me a Happy Valentines Day ~ my favourite valentine indeed!  She had just had dinner with my son and her Mom and amazingly enough my son had prompted her to phone!

Over the course of the conversation we made plans to get together for a sleepover and she suggested the following day.  Without hesitating I said "Of Course you can sleep over" and quickly decided that my son and I were not having steak for dinner as the result would be another trip to the market on Saturday to pick up food she would eat.

When my son finally awoke I told him the good news and he was concerned about his cold and getting her sick ~ making me appear irresponsible in saying yes ~ but, it is only a cold!  He sleeps most of the time she is here anyway!

I won ~ as usually happens in our disagreements ~ he lost steak and the argument.  I ate another potato and told him he could have some hot sausage I had purchased instead so I had to teach him how to cook that and he did a pretty good job.

I stayed up too late (nothing new these days) and finally went to bed around 3:00 a.m., regretting it on Saturday when I woke up, never fully waking up that too familiar pain stemming from my neck acting up in my knee but still able to stand and walk (thankfully!)  For a change I did not plan anything deciding to wing it with Ainsley.

I was on my computer when I decided to make some home fries.  While in the kitchen, I got distracted with mopping the kitchen floor which was long overdue.  As I was completing the task and rinsing my mop for the final time, the handle of the mop pushed over a 2 quart container of  Kool Aide all over the floor!  I watched it fall slow motion and hit the floor with a plop and a splash!

I was shocked and surprised by this happening.  I tried to clean it up with the swiffer and decided it was futile and grabbed a big towel and made life easier.  Still in disbelief despite seeing the huge red lake of juice on my clean floor.

It figures doesn't it?  I went back to my computer ~ homefries forgotten about for a minute, finally laughing to myself about the incident.  I went back into the kitchen and resumed my late breakfast.  My son and his family were due sometime that afternoon, I am glad it was not during that fiasco!

They arrived with a plate of sugar cookies for us.  My daughter in law is awesome (not because she brought cookies), she is such a good wife, mother and overall person!  I am just delighted to know her and be involved in their lives!

We got rid of the adults and began to settle into our routine.  Backpack up in Gramma's room, coat hung up, boots drying by the door.  We got caught up and she said she just found out Jeffrey had been in a band.  I told her that I knew it, and asked her if she ever heard their music which she hadn't so I took off the Tom Petty I had been listening to all morning and put on my son's C.D.

We played pickup sticks and chatted about this and that.  It was nice and low key.  She picked up the Sand Art gift I had given Tom for Christmas from one of our Art Sessions which reminded me that Patrick and I had tripped over another old Sand Art kit while he was looking for all those games on Thomas's birthday.

That was all she needed to hear and we went up to wake up Tom and grab the Sand Art.  Tom was not surfacing so we left him to his snooze and went downstairs to get set up.  It had no containers and somehow we could not locate the leftover sand from our last episode despite checking all of the craft tubs in the dining room.

I located a couple of random glass bottles and washed labels and dried them.  I was worried there wasn't enough sand for two ( I was right) so we improvised and I pulled out the glitter supply and we topped our projects off with glitter.  (Effective thinking 101 paid off there!)

She had me watching some Goosebumps shows on t.v. which I was kind of amazed she liked ~ the topics were alien (really alien!)  Finally she decided she was hungry ~ very hungry all of the sudden so I steamed some potatoes and carrots and turned on the broiler.

We tried to wake up Tom again, but he decided he was not hungry and went back to sleep yet again.  Not a big deal to me or to Ainsley ~ he know's how to cook a steak!  We ate in the living room ~ not something I would normally do, she ate all of her veggies but not her steak (that girl never eats everything!)

She had found the Bop It again and was trying to beat her old record and not having much luck so we played together ~ me in charge of flick and twist while she had spin, pull and bop and we tried to get beyond 10 (laughing and mimicking the game when it said "Dude you gotta do better than that"!

I was exhausted and suggested P.J.s and t.v. up in my room around 8:00 ~ we were laughing at Ridiculousness and all of it's ridiculousness (trying to beat our score during commercials).  We finally decided to put on a movie appropriate for her, settling on EPIC.

What a cool movie!  What I saw of it!  We were both fast asleep within an hour ~ I just woke up a few minutes ago coming downstairs and finding Thomas on his computer.  He had taken the liberty of cleaning Ainsleys steak up for me.

I am still exhausted and am nearly ready for bed again.  I know that I will be up early in the morning and without a doubt cooking and doing some project before I am even awake.  I am not complaining ~ I live for my time with my little monkey!

February Vacation begins this week.  My kids have been out of school for a while now so it doesn't even usually register in my brain anymore ~ but with the prospect of being able to help out my son and his family I am all over that Vacation this year!

It was nice having a calm and unplanned visit with my granddaughter.  I do so enjoy her stories and listening to her and playing with her.  She brings so much joy and inspiration and Love into my life!  Truth be told I do not know what I would do without her I am truly blessed and honoured to be one of her Gramma's!

The other day my friends husband asked me how it is to live with my son.  My son has lived with me for his whole life and as you know I have issue with empty nest syndrome and being alone, still not over either of my other son's leaving and not looking forward at all to the day that my baby leaves.

Having distanced myself and been the person looking in from the outside in all things family, my children were my "family" and I don't understand when people look forward to not having their children around.  The connection to family has always been important I can never get enough of them (although at times my son's schedule and mine conflict and it causes me anxiety.)

They are the one family that couldn't keep me away even if they wanted to, although Jeff did when he stayed in town with my Mom to finish school 17 years ago and distanced himself from the rest of us.  I find it very reassuring that he is back (sort of) and let's me be a part of his life through Ainsley.

I can still remember so vividly the day my middle son sat me down at our kitchen table and said "Mom ~ Thomas is the man of the house now, think of him as you would me."  and then he moved in with his Dad, something he had dreamed of since he was a small boy.

That was a huge loss to me and Thomas's life which we still are adjusting to all these years later.  At least he still calls, comes over and spends time with us regularly, good son that he is!  I do not understand how, like my friends husband wonders how it is living with my son, how a parent can choose not to be a part of their children's lives.

While in my life, I am separate from a majority of my extended family (not really by choice so much other than life just happening) I could never imagine being separated from my sons for too long of a time, despite my fantasy life where I am off and traveling the world alone.

My children have saved my life on more than one occasion without them ever realizing it and now I am blessed with a sweet little girl and wonderful daughter in law to expand my "inner circle of family".  They keep me going and make me who I am and make me so much more of a total person!

Thursday, February 13, 2014


I told you I was ready to write!  Please feel free to read my latest Glipo Blog Writing Challenges!  One more left but my son is demanding my attention!  I need to think a bit more on the topic anyway so it may not be available until tomorrow considering the hour already!

Hope you enjoy them and have a great evening ~ one stems from real life when I was a teenager and living in my parents house ~ pre kids and all that ~ had to be home for a curfew and was in a wonderful state of mind (if you know what I mean).

The second is a personal subject for me.  Purely fictional, but it could be real.  Hope you enjoy it as well!
150 words is quite a limit considering I have a habit of being a bit long winded and detailed.  Talking is worse believe me ~ especially if I am comfortable with you!

My son awaits!


Snow day...canceled everything, including the Art Show I was going to attend this evening.  Bummer for sure, but I spent a couple of hours enjoying a wonderful old comedy "My Sister Eileen" with Rosalind Russell.  She is by far one of the funniest ladies!

My son is down with a sore throat which gave him a reason to sleep extra hours to his already sleep filled days, leaving me with some extra free time to waste.  I think about the only productive thing I have done all day is shovel the two walks and throw down some salt just in case.

Tomorrow is my busy day, but I am sure that by the time I head out into the world the roads at least will be plowed so I will at least be able to walk safely (as safe as a pedestrian is around here!)  Much to do including a little bit of grocery shopping.

The temperature today was in the 30's which is warmer than it has been.  The other day it was 8 and that felt warm so it should be like a spring day ~ unless that brutal wind is blowing!

Of course I have been putting off deadlines so I will be spending the next bit of time probably driving you crazy with a couple of posts all at once.  Hope you don't mind but I looked at the calendar and realized I was in a crunch!

I love pressure and it is on (but not really!)  Can you tell I have been home alone all day with no one to talk to?  Actually I have been chatting with the new group of friends on that game I am addicted to.  Getting weather forecasts from around the country and learning how to do ☺♫ ♪♀♦ (I love to learn new things!)

Thomas did get up finally while I was watching the movie.  It just ended not to long ago so I decided to recommend that movie ~ My Girl Friday and The Women (the original) to check out some more really good comedies she is in.

I am off to meet my deadline and see what other possibilities there are for me to shake the cobwebs off of my dusty brain.  I hope that wherever you are you take the time ~ ride out the storm and watch an old movie and laugh!

Wednesday, February 12, 2014


Help!! I am addicted to a new game.  No denial here, these hour long tournaments in this new Time Management game have taken me away from just about everything else that I do (besides necessary obligations and responsibilities.)

What was just a minor (maybe more) addiction to a couple of games and the Internet has now turned into a month of major time wasting.  I did not realize just how bad it had become until I went to read my friends blog and a week had gone by since I last read.

Mind you, I had a very busy week last week with my youngest son's birthday and my grand daughter and then First Friday crept up in there, eldest son's birthday, doctors, shopping, laundry, pharmacy and everything else in between.  Lest you think I am just glued to my computer.

I wrote a few things (just not everyday) and truth be told I have thought about writing a lot over the past couple of weeks but then get involved.  The game just went down for maintenance so here I am.  I am bad to be sure.

I wake up in the morning and go to do my normal routine, tea, computer, reading, writing, socialize, read some it is ~ turn on the computer and play the game.  No if, and, or buts about it ~ even when I get out of bed and tell myself  I am going to write first ~ something always happens to lead me astray!

No big deal ~ what do I have to do besides waste time??  What better way than developing time management skills?  It has made me speedier in my daily operations (seeing how quickly I can get my simple tasks done.)

I have totally removed Christmas (finally) from my house.  Tree is bagged and in the basement and the last box packed this very evening while I was visiting with Cindy.  Done and done for another year, although somehow the packing up took up more space and I had to rethink packing but it all worked out in the end.

I got to see some great Art on Friday ~ some of it in some odd places ~ City Hall comes to mind and it was opened after 5 ~ the janitor graciously kept the doors open past 7:00 ( a good thing considering after I had checked out all of the available Art to see I still had an hour to kill) checking the pamphlet to see what I may have missed with many venues opting out of the February Artwalk.

I made my way to the Whitney Arts Center and caught the tail end of the show there and hung around chatting before the Artists/Patron After ArtWalk get together.  I had a wonderful conversation with a man who got displaced in New Orleans by the crazy Mortgage fiasco.

Sharing our similar stories it was funny and sad at the same time.  Hearing and telling each other what we had and what we lost and wondering similarly how in the hell we were ever going to fix it.  Fix something that we didn't break ~ that much was common ~ and of course neither one of us have any answers!

I chatted with others as well, I love the Art crowd.  They are so cool and laid back and down to earth and talented.  I was getting tired and wanting to pull off my boots so I opted out of waiting for pizza and walked back up North Street with the newly retired Mike's Bikes guy who had to close his business cuz it just isn't worth it anymore.

It was freezing and out of my way, but it is always nice to walk and chat with someone instead of walking alone.  It makes the cold less cold and the wind less biting.  We had an interesting "Science and Earth" conversation ( one of my favorites ~ I love hearing peoples observations about the changes.)

I was greeted at home by Thomas who was surprised to see me so early.  It took a bit to warm up as it was COLD!!!  Nothing new there ~ I choose to believe that spring will be sooner rather than later as 2 out of 3 ground hogs said so ~ I think the one in PA just went the other way because the M.C. had a really good poem if winter were extended.

It will be here when it wants.  Nothing we can really do about that.  I don't mind really.  It is nice and warm when it is above 0 and the wind is calm.  Like a Spring day in itself!

So I took some pictures of my adventure on Friday and I am going to post them randomly.  This Thursday is another opening for the 10X10 Event which is a new thing  ~ everyone is busy producing things with 10 objects in them.

I did see some new art and meet a couple of new artists with AMAZING work and saw some AWESOME new works by some of my favorite artists ~ one of which no amount of excellent photography (of which I am mediocre) would even begin to do justice to!

Lichtenstein Center (a few of the 10 Leading Contemporary Berkshire Artists)

Michael Rousseau

Scott Taylor

(picture unclear with his last name ~ sorry)


Peggy Rivers
(Also at the Berkshire Community College Intermodel Gallery

NU Arts Studio and Gallery

Jennifer Gallant ~ below the road ~ city grafitti

 Jackie Kearns 
Brothership Building Window

 Crawford Square

Valentines Window

JD Logan
The Marketplace Cafe

City Hall
Michael Rousseau,  Peg Dotchin, Mario Calouri, Sean McCusker

Whitney Center for the Arts
14 Artists from the Berkshires and Beyond

 My night in pictures!  What a fun, fun time!  Art, people, conversation and a camera!  What more could a girl ask for?

I really love the Valentines Trees in the window.  The pictures would not come out correctly in the daytime but I think I caught them much better at night.  Like I said ~ I am an amateur with the camera to be sure, but I do enjoy it and hope you can tolerate my photos!

We lost Shirley Temple last night ~ that is sad to me ~ she will always be that cute, ring curled girl, smiling, singing and dancing ~ overcoming hardships and tragedy with a song and a smile!  I for one never miss the opportunity to watch any of her movies and will remember her fondly.

On that note, and considering it is Wednesday already and I have to get up in the morning ~ I will leave you ~ and remind you that we (women/girls) are all Princesses ~ don't you ever forget it!  Love and peace to you all!