Monday, July 27, 2015


I love to grocery shop. But, there is one aspect to it, that drives me bonkers. That is... opening the plastic bags to deposit fruit or veggies. It is a real chore for me. No ifs, ands, or buts about it… I can not master the art, of doing what should be, a simple task. Those bags remain firmly closed, and I struggle to open 'em… for at least 5 to 10 minutes, each time…  feeling like a complete idiot. Nothing rattles my cage more than this. Well, perhaps that is overstating the problem a bit. But you catch my drift, right? As I attempt to gather my produce.... dealing with these bags is... irritating, distracting, not to mention... time consuming. Is it me? Or do you too, have an issue with them? If not, do you have any quick tips, to outsmart these pesky PLASTIC bags, so they say OPEN SESAME? This frustrated lady wants to know? Personally, I’d prefer PAPER ones, instead. Maybe, I should petition my local store, to offer them as an option... for old, weary shoppers with fumblefingers. Or is that BUTTERFINGERS? Why am I suddenly craving chocolate?


Monday, July 20, 2015


Fountains delight me. I am mesmerized by them. Songs have been written about them and movies made. You find these glorious water features in the most conspicuous places. They reside on the grounds of museums, libraries, office buildings, town squares, malls, home gardens and the like. And they are always the center of attention. You see that water spurting up to the sky, and you are immediately drawn to the fountain. What adult doesn’t reach deep into their pocket or purse, to extract a penny or two, to throw inside the reflecting pool, puddling below? As young children we are taught to “make a wish” as we toss a coin into the fountain. And if we are lucky, that wish might really come true. If only we believe, lore tells us. The truth is, fountains give us hope. They make the seemingly impossible, possible for one scintilla of a second. They bring us comfort. The sound of the water… stills our hearts, and we feel no stress. The world is free of pain, fear. Time stands still. And we smile, don’t we? As we gaze deep within. Throughout the years, I have made my fair share of wishes… as I have tossed countless coins, into various fountains… across this great land. The other day was no exception. We were at the hospital. My husband was having some tests. After his procedures were over, we sat down, him and I… on a bench near a beautiful fountain, outside. With noise all around, there was a stillness there. A peaceful calm. It was in the middle of the afternoon. And as is customary, we parted with some loose change, hoping for a positive outcome. A wish come true. An answer to our prayers. But suddenly… our solitude was disturbed. And we watched in horror, as our money was scooped up by a groundskeeper. He was mopping up the coins, with a broom and placing them in a BIG ugly plastic bucket. Where was the MAGIC in that? Where were all those coins going? To what cause? Surely… it was bigger than our wishes, alone? When we asked, he said, it would be noble if the coins went to an organization like, “Make A Wish Foundation.” But… the truth is, he told us… they go into a fund to maintain the fountain. Nothing more, nothing less. End of story. This momentarily threw us for a loop. We were disillusioned. But we supposed, it ultimately made sense. Look at all the joy it brings to thousands of people every day. Without the fountain… where would all those WISHES, go? We watched this worker finish his job, take the money and leave. My husband and I… looked at each other. Despite our ages, we are still young at heart. Without hesitating, we reached deep into our pockets, once again... finding a few more spare coins... and we tossed them, with reckless abandon, into the fountain. Heads, say we win... whatever we wish. BECAUSE we BELIEVE.



Monday, July 13, 2015


My husband and I married many moons ago in Michigan. This week is our anniversary. It is a milestone year and begs for a celebration. We have been housebound for a long time, taking only staycations to the lake. It has been raining excessively, too. Traveling to somewhere exotic would be nice. A trip to Hawaii or Paris, as much as we’d like them, is out of the question, though. The money we have in the bank won’t stretch quite that far. However, we should be able to afford a little more than we did, back on our twenty-fifth anniversary. That was eons ago. Back then, we had not one thin dime to our names. We were living in a dirt cheap motel. And we went to the Lincoln Park Zoo in Chicago to celebrate, because it was FREE. We spent the entire day dealing with other people’s children… pushing, shoving, screaming and crying. It was not exactly the romantic adventure we had imagined. But we made do, trying to enjoy ourselves. The animals made it worth our while. My hubby and I...then sought out, the Alfred Caldwell Lily Pool, nearby... where we renewed our vows, saying a little ditty to each other... with lots of people milling about. It was sweet, but crowded... yet, somehow intimate enough, to mark the occasion. No one embraced us or the moment, so we went on our way. (Nowadays it would have been captured by a stranger’s cellphone and posted on social media.)  After our little impromptu ceremony... we picked up a cheeseburger, small fries and a drink... splitting the order  in half, to share in our motel room. HAPPY ANNIVERSARY. That was it. No friends, family. Just us. More years, than we care to mention... have passed since then. And, we've had plenty of other anniversaries to celebrate in style, with all the bells and whistles. But now, because of our advancing ages, particularly my husband's... this anniversary, this week... is especially important. Because the truth is... it could be our last one together. The Grim Reaper looms. So... we racked our brains for ideas. What to do or where to go to celebrate. Unfortunately, the main issue at hand is our mobility. Wherever we go... has to be easy to navigate, with little if any walking involved. And parking must make the place accessible. Breathing in the elements... is also a potential deal breaker, because of my husband’s pulmonary problems. The heat and humidity are not COPD friendly. So no risk taking in July. Yet… our hearts desire is strong. The outdoors beckons. The ocean is calling us home. But not yet. Not this week. In the late fall, instead... when the temperatures drop and wearing a sweater is a necessity. Somewhere, where the sharks aren’t biting... we’ll be renting a room for a week... in a vintage 1950’s motel with an ocean view. We’ll be chilling… with a few mimosas, or perhaps mulled cider… sitting on our butts, in a couple of basket weave lounge chairs… watching the waves roll in… as the sun rises out on the Atlantic Ocean. Did you know that ocean is the same color as my husband’s eyes? A beautiful seafoam green. My heart beats a little faster, when I see them both. Let’s hope nothing happens to change our plans between, now and then. We’re more than a little excited.

Monday, July 6, 2015


I was shopping and noticed the autumn Yankee Candles are out in the stores, right now. Seems kind of early to me. But I love Fall, so I had to peek at them.  I wanted to see what new names were in the mix. The old standby’s were there, Pumpkin Spice and Pumpkin Cupcake. Who doesn’t love those? I figured the names I wasn’t familiar with, must be the new releases. Fall Wreath, Fresh Salted Caramel, Ripe Berries, Sweet Red Apple, Cinnamon Meringue, Apple and Pumpkin Picking… just to name a few. Some of them sound good enough to eat, don't they? I particularly loved the aroma of Ripe Berries. However, the one that really stood out to me, was Brisk Morning Air. How do you capture the feel of that in a 22 oz. jar? I tried to conjure up an image of myself… outside at dawn, watching the sunrise, in the early October sky. Feeling that cool, crispness of the morning… as I pulled my sweater, a little tighter around my shoulders, shivering... inhaling, exhaling… seeing my breath hover in the air, as I take in the season. The scent of burning leaves lingering from the night before, fresh coffee being brewed. Yet, that doesn’t really describe the complexity of such a morning does it? There is something in the brisk, dawn of a Fall morn, that envelops you in a hug. It draws you in, encouraging you to plant your feet and stay awhile. If someone could package and deliver that experience to your front door, you would buy it, wouldn’t you? Hence, the candles I was looking at. Curious, I took a sniff. This MORNING one was intriguing, smelled nice, fragrant. Not sure if morning dawned, but I liked it a lot. Enough to buy it. Yankee Candle says this about their Brisk Morning Air candle, "With the crisp scents of eucalyptus and mint layered beneath soft pear and sage, it's like that first deep breath of bright, clean air on a morning far, far away." And here I thought... Autumn had something to do with it. Or maybe it does? 

(PS. I got the RIPE BERRIES candle too.)

Friday, July 3, 2015


“Freedom is the open window
through which pours the sunlight
 of the human spirit.”