Saturday, November 27, 2021

The One Where I Finally See Lights Turn On

Ten Things of Thankful, here I come!

We pre-gamed Thanksgiving last weekend at the lake house, cooking a small turkey we had in the freezer and having dressing, mashed potatoes and gravy with it. My son was able to drive up and join us, for which I am extra thankful (his wife was on call for the weekend and couldn't come with him, so that was a bummer), and my daughter's friend Kirstin was also there (surprise visit that she and I had planned weeks ago), and it was a lovely time.

You've got to be thankful for a two-day work week! I made pumpkin pie with my littles both days, and we took some mini pumpkins and dried corn out to the woods so the deer and squirrels and other critters could enjoy a Thanksgiving meal, too.

No one threw up this year at Thanksgiving. This is BIG, because the last time we all got together (pre-Covid), every. single. person. EXCEPT me got the stomach flu. 

I'm thankful my brother is a terrific cook. We had a wonderful time with him and his wife and daughter Amy, ate entirely too much, and this bears repeating, NO ONE THREW UP.

My daughter's car got a flat tire while we were staying with her, which was fortunate (that we were staying with her, NOT that she got a flat tire), because we were able to get AAA there to put on the spare and then get the tire fixed within a few hours.

We live in the land of Walmart, and that's where we're used to turning when we have a problem like a flat tire while out of town. Funny thing, there aren't Walmarts conveniently located when you're in a city, and the tire repair places were closed because of Thanksgiving, so we are now the proud owners of a membership to Costco, which is only a couple of miles from my daughter's apartment. We did get small town treatment from the tire department when they squeezed us in, even though the were booked all day, and we are all grateful for that!

I did a little Black Friday shopping on the Plaza and ran into friends from home whom I hadn't seen in two years. It was delightful to see you, Vanessa, Carmi, and Laney! Hope you enjoyed the shopping and the cheesecake!

I saved my biggest thankful for last:

The Country Club Plaza in Kansas City opened in 1923 and was the first planned shopping district in the country. It was also built to accommodate shoppers arriving by car. The architecture is based on that of the city of Seville, Spain, and it's known for upscale stores and restaurants. In 1925, several merchants decided to put up colored lights to celebrate Christmas. By 1930, the lights had increased so much that they decided to hold a lighting ceremony, and now, tens of thousands of people attend the ceremony every Thanksgiving.

I grew up in Kansas City, and every Christmas, we drove down to the Plaza to see the lights, but I never, ever got to attend a lighting ceremony. In fairness, we spent many Thanksgivings out of town, but even when we weren't, we never made it down there for a number of reasons, mainly, that it was too cold and too crowded. Trips were attempted and aborted midway when traffic jams made it impossible to get there before the switch was flipped. I moved away from Kansas City when I went to college, and my parents moved away a year later, and while I would go see the lights every few years, I was never able to go to a lighting ceremony.

A few years ago, my brother and his family moved back to Kansas City, but once again, cold weather, traffic, crowds, and A BUNCH OF PARTY POOPERS IN MY FAMILY kept me from going to a lighting ceremony. I had to be content with watching it on tv (and I KNOW there are more spectacular Christmas lights in other places, but this is a Kansas City thing and a Big Deal if you're from there). Fast forward to this year, and my daughter is living a block away from the Plaza. THIS WAS FINALLY GOING TO HAPPEN FOR ME.

My daughter agreed to go with me, and we bundled up Thursday evening before walking down to the lighting ceremony. My husband decided at the last minute to go with us, and we headed down into the throngs. I didn't care about the ceremony itself, which included singers and dancers; I just wanted to be there when they flipped the switch and the lights magically came on. 

And it happened. 61 years in the making, and I was finally there!

I hope your Thanksgiving was magical, too. The Ten Things of Thankful blog hop link is open and ready for you to join! Please do!


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Sunday, November 14, 2021

As God Is My Witness, I Thought Turkeys Could Fly

This week's weather report ranged from warm and humid days with severe thunderstorms and tornado warnings (not for us but in the vicinity) to cold and breezy days, rain, sun, clouds, and snow flurries. Snow. Flurries. Not ready for that. I AM ready for this week's Ten Things of Thankful, though:

1. There's a long, dull explanation for the why of the following, but the Reader's Digest condensed version is that our child development center classrooms get yearly assessments provided by the state that are used to help improve the quality of childcare, and that includes periodic visits from "coaches" who visit our classrooms every few months and provide feedback. Let me say first and foremost that my coach is wonderful and gives me terrific support, but it still raises my anxiety level to have someone evaluating me and my classroom. 

My coach was supposed visit me on Monday of this past week, so I spent the Friday afternoon before, with MUCH help from one of my student workers (thank you, Baylee!) making 3D turkeys with my little nugs to hang from the ceiling of the classroom, as hanging 3D art is a must-have for the yearly assessment (and considered a "fireball" by the fire marshall, but that's a story for another day). I hung them up Sunday afternoon in preparation for my coach's visit, then I stood back and looked at them and laughed until I cried. Instead of cute turkeys hanging from the ceiling, it looked like a processing room at the Butterball plant.

My husband called my room a "Thanksgiving haunted house."

And I love it.

2. Unfortunately, my coach was not feeling well on Monday and didn't come for the visit, but she is not seriously ill and will be coming to visit my poultry processing factory, I mean, my classroom soon.

3. My daughter and I both received a letter from her former apartment complex notifying us we had been turned over to collection for an outstanding balance of $175 that turned out to be an error. I mean, WE knew we didn't owe money, but it's not always easy to convince the other party of that.

4. My daughter gets a big thankful for taking care of the above sitch. 

5. I gave myself a little haircut this week. I was wanting some more layers, so I tried something called a unicorn cut for curly hair. After watching a couple of YouTube videos, I unicorned myself. Bad news is I gave myself bangs, which I did not intend to happen, but the good news is, after living with them for a couple of days, I don't hate them anymore.

6. I donated blood this week for the American Red Cross. I usually do the Power Red donation, but their machinery was down, so I made a normal donation. The phlebotomist who took my blood was excellent, I was in and out in twenty minutes, and if you are healthy, you should consider being a blood donor, too. 

7. My husband and I went out for Mexican food this week. Twice.

8. It's pretty amazing that we can order something online and have it delivered in a day or two to our home, and while it can be frustrating when our deliveries are late, spoiled as we are with overnight shipping, it is even MORE frustrating when a delivery is early and comes when you are out of town (again, first world problem, but still a problem). My husband had three packages delivered two days before they were supposed to be, putting them square on our front step where anyone could see them. Enter my friend and co-worker Robin! She went out of her way to go by my house and pick them up and hold them until I see her at school on Monday. Yes, I bribed her with caramel popcorn, but she's the kind of person who would have done it WITHOUT the bribe, and I hope all of you have a Robin in your life!

9. I FINALLY completed a (what seemed like 100 but in reality was more like 9) session training on Conscious Disclipline that began in September, with each session being 2-3 hours long. On Zoom. I signed up for it originally because it meant a 3-day trip out of town with several fun people from work, but, cruelly, it was converted to a virtual training that, while interesting and valuable, seemed truly endless. I shall take a STAR breath now and move on....

10.Thanksgiving is coming! Thanksgiving is coming! Thanksgiving is coming!

Be ever thankful. 

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Sunday, November 7, 2021

It Was A Freaky Week

Want to know what's worse than the week of Halloween? The week AFTER Halloween! Yowza, those kiddos are WOUND. UP. from the excitement and the sugar! But what better way to start this week's Ten Things of Thankful than with the first one on my list:

I'm thankful all things Halloween are OVER, and we can move on to my favorite holiday, Thanksgiving!

We sort of skipped fall this week and went straight to winter for a few days, so once again, I am thankful for that electric mattress pad that I mention in my TToT oh, so frequently. 

The unexpected chilly weather did allow me to wear my new nightgown. I found it at a really interesting little thrift store in the Waldo area of Kansas City last weekend for one whole dollar! It's satin on the outside and brushed flannel on the inside, so you stay warm but can easily turn over under the covers. It's a short gown, which means I don't get tangled up in it, and it's pink. Did I mention it was a dollar? It was a DOLLAR!

Yesterday, my husband and I spent the day visiting thrift stores and flea markets and antique malls (we live a pretty exciting life). As we were headed to our last planned destination, I asked my husband if we could stop by our house, so I could run inside and go to the bathroom. He stayed in the car as I headed to the front door, but just as I got to our front steps, I dropped the keys. Now, I drop the keys several times a week on the top step as I'm juggling the items in my arms and trying to unlock the front door, but THIS time, I dropped them on the first step, and they slid across the step AND DISAPPEARED UNDER THE CONCRETE SLAB PORCH.I immediately dropped to my knees and started crying. My husband, looking up and seeing me, thought I had fallen down and jumped out of the car. 

(NOTE: The entire porch area and step leading up to it used to be covered with dark green outdoor carpeting. It tore about 10 years ago, and we pulled it up and left the concrete exposed. What I DIDN'T know was that the carpeting covered a gap that would ordinarily be an upright section of concrete, but who knows what they were thinking when the house was built nearly 100 years ago.)

I tried to reach through the gap and feel for the keys (wearing gloves, because God only knows what could be living under there), but I couldn't get my arm in further than just past my wrist. Using a flashlight, I could see dead leaves and very old wooden supports, but no keys. In a moment of lucidity, I used my Tile app to (hopefully) narrow down where they had dropped, and I could hear the Tile on them ringing, and it didn't SEEM to sound terribly far, so at least they didn't fall into some opening to a mine shaft or anything.

Here's the really fun part: we had no house key AND we had no car key; however, before we left town for my son's wedding back in April, I took a spare key to work and tacked it to a bulletin board in my observation room, as everyone in our family would be in OKC and I wanted to be sure someone could get in our house if need be. My husband was able to track down his dad, who came over and took us to my work, where I retrieved the key. Once home, my husband remembered that my brother had given us a kind of endoscope with a magnet and a light on it, and after it was charged and an app downloaded, he was able to use it to retrieve the keys! HUGE thankful to both my husband AND my brother. I'm not sure my brother could have anticipated his gift being used for fishing my keys out from under the house, but I'm pretty sure he won't be entirely surprised that the event happened in the first place.

Surely that covers at LEAST ten thankfuls.

Join the Ten Things of Thankful blog hop, this week or any week. We'll be here!

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Sunday, October 31, 2021

Goodbye, Halloween!

End of the week, end of October - already! The days and weeks really snowball once you get to September, but that's okay. We will get our time back in January, which seems to last about three months, and February, which spouts that "shortest month of the year" hype that it can't live up to. Whatever. We'll be here with the Ten Things of Thankful weekly blog hop no matter the month, because we are DEDICATED to recognizing that we all have thankfuls in our lives Here are mine for this week:

1. I sold a boat. I know this was in last week's post, but it bears repeating, and if you read the post about it, you will understand why I feel this way!

2. Halloween is over after this weekend. I am not, nor have I ever been, a big fan of the holiday, but children love it and can't think of anything else for the entire month leading up to it. If you've never been in a classroom the last week before Halloween, you cannot imagine the level of excitement they reach, including 2 and 3 year olds, who really don't have a clue exactly what it is they're anticipating.

3. Having said all that in #2, you might find it interesting that I put on a Trunk or Treat event for our little nugs at school. Due to Covid, we couldn't have our annual pumpkin party shindig, so I suggested doing a trunk or treat and inviting departments at the university to participate. The idea was immediately approved and I was promptly volunteered to be in charge. I had over 15 departments, groups, and individuals sign up, and it turned out to be a terrific event for everyone!

4. Did I mention that I have never been to a trunk or treat event myself and didn't really have a clue what I was doing? I am SOOOO thankful that the trunkers either had before or did a little research, because they KILLED it! I just walked around and offered extra tape and they truly did all the real work.

5. Did I also mention that I offered prizes and snacks to entice them? I think they would have participated regardless, but a friendly little bribe never hurts.

6. My husband and I went to Kansas City for the weekend to visit our daughter. We couldn't leave until the Trunk or Treat event was done, so by the time we got on the road, it was after 6 pm and dusky. We were on the interstate (it's a 2 hour and 15 minute drive through a very rural and very flat part of Missouri), when a deer bolted across the road in front of a pickup truck that was just ahead of us. The pickup hit the deer (the deer kept running - those things are hardier than you might think) but didn't lost control, we didn't hit the pick up, and my husband perked up and took his position at shotgun a little more seriously the rest of the trip.

7. Miraculously, we saw no more deer on the rest of the drive.

8. Daughter was at a law school Halloween party when we got to town, but there is an electronic entry on the building and her apartment, so we don't have to have a key to get in. 

9. Her cat, Calvin, was happy to have our company.

10. We had a fun weekend of eating, talking, and visiting thrift stores. Treasures were found by all three of us!

Gonna paint it.

Touted as "best burger in KC". Good,
but maybe not best. Will continue to
research that.

How often do you find an enamelware urinal
for sale? For me, it's twice, as I got one at
an auction a few years ago and use it as a vase.

How was your week? Are you ready for Halloween to be over and to move on to MY favorite holiday of the year, Thanksgiving? Link your thankful post with us below. The link is open from Friday mornings through Monday evening. You can find the time!

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Sunday, October 24, 2021


Sometimes, the Ten Things of Thankful just writes itself, and this is one of those weeks! Here's why:

The sailboat is sold!

In a TToT posted the last week in August, I wrote that I had cleaned (as well as I could or was inclined to do) the sailboat that had been sitting in the carport at the lake house for - I kid you not - 32 years. 32. Years.

Step into the Wayback Machine with me for this one.

In 1988, my parents drove to Las Vegas for an Ace Hardware buying show (my dad owned a farm supply store that also sold Ace). My brother was living in Yuma, Arizona, at the time, and he met them in Vegas, and then all three of them went to Los Angeles for a couple of days. Now, I wasn't there and have only heard the story second hand, but rumor has it that my dad found out there was a boat show in Long Beach, and he didn't want to do any of the activities (which included attending a Tonight Show taping) that my brother had planned once he found this out. By this time, they were all at sixes and sevens, so in the interest of family harmony, it was decided my dad would drop my mom and brother off at the Tonight Show taping, and he would continue on to the boat show.

When the taping had ended, my mom and brother were waiting for my dad to pick them up when what should pull up to the curb but my dad TOWING A SAILBOAT ON A TRAILER. Apparently, he walked into the boat show, saw the sailboat on display, sails up and in all its glory, and he wasn't going to leave without it. And he didn't. What makes this even better (because I wasn't there and didn't have to put up with any of it) is that everywhere they went from that point on was with a 26 foot sailboat following them. Hollywood. Santa Monica. Sailboat. Picture it.

After a couple of days, my brother headed back to Arizona, and my parents towed the sailboat allllll the way back to Missouri. They took the boat to Stockton Lake, about an hour from their home, and my dad learned to sail it (he had a small sailboat that they took to the lake occasionally, but this one was much bigger and could sleep 6 if two of them were very short or very limber). My mother was not a sailor and mostly went out on the boat because she didn't want my dad to go alone, but they did spend two summers going out on it, my dad loving it and my mom tolerating it. 

Fall of 1989, my parents started looking at lake houses on Lake Taneycomo (3 hours from where they lived). At first, it was just for fun, but then they found one they loved and they bought it. They pulled the sailboat out of Stockton Lake for the winter, parked it in the carport of the new lake house, and there it sat until this past weekend.

My mom was always after my dad to sell the sailboat, but he insisted he was going to get it out again (the lake house is NOT a sailing lake - the water is 45-50 degrees year-round), but he didn't. All the cushions and sails were stored inside the house, the boat got an occasional power wash, but otherwise, it just sat, forlornly, in the carport for 32 years.

In the summer of 2019, my dad said he thought maybe he should sell the boat, and we put a sign in front of the house, but no takers. This summer, after making plans with a builder to add on a real garage to the house and turn the carport into a shop for all his tools and saws and stuff, my dad said he might sell the boat on an online auction site, and I told him I would try to sell it on Facebook Marketplace first.

The only time I've been aboard the boat
is to clean it....

I cleaned the boat at the end of August, took pictures, and listed it on Marketplace. We had a couple of lookers, a lot of inquiries, all wanting to know if it came with a motor (it did not), and then I got a message that seemed too good to be true: someone who once owned the exact same boat saw the listing and wanted to buy it, and this weekend, the man drove to Branson, paid what we were asking for it, hitched it to his pick up truck, and drove off with the sailboat.

My daddy.

We couldn't have asked for a better transaction
and transfer of my dad's beloved sailboat.

My dad was wistful. "I wish I could have taken it out one more time," he said the night before it was sold, even though he knew that physically, at almost 87, he couldn't really have sailed it.  As long as the sailboat remained in the carport, there was a chance, but when it was gone, the chapter was finally closed. 

I'm not going to lie: I had a lump in my throat when that boat disappeared down the street behind the new owner's truck. Then I drove my car into the empty space in the carport and parked there for the first time in 32 years, and it was good.

I hereby invoke the TToT's Secret Rule 1.3(c)(iii) that states when one finally sells a boat after 32 years, that's thanks enough!

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Monday, October 18, 2021

Without Further Ado

Cool weather. Monday night football on tv. Cats snoring on the bed. Good writing atmosphere, right? Without further ado, here are my Ten Things of Thankful for this week:

1. There was a lot of rain last week. It's been really dry around here, so the rain was welcome EXCEPT when a big storm blew up one morning at school, and I had to lower the shades on the windows so the nugs couldn't see the lightning. Good news is none of them really noticed the thunder that followed, which perhaps will let you know what the noise level was like INSIDE the room....

2. My husband and I took Thursday, Friday, and Monday off for a mini vacay, and we began it with a visit to Silver Dollar City on Thursday, between rain showers. If you have a season pass and go to a certain number of their festivals, you qualify for a pewter Christmas ornament that you can pick up during Ozark Mountain Christmas. We had to make it to the fall festival rain or shine! While we were there, I devoured, and I do mean DEVOURED a small loaf of cinnamon bread that was utterly amazing. I'm calling it research, because I plan to try to recreate this delicacy, but my husband said I was just a piggy, and yes, I did share with him, but no, it was NOT a 50/50 share, because RESEARCH.

3. On Friday, we drove to Little Rock in (you guessed it) THE RAIN. It's a beautiful drive from Branson to Little Rock WHEN IT'S NOT RAINING. The highway winds through the Ozark Mountains and the Boston Mountains and has fun attractions like runaway truck ramps along it. Our brakes did not fail us, but the anti-skid device on the car kicked in once and scared the bejeebers out of me. We found an awesome little diner in Clinton, Arkansas, where I thought they were serving me pineapple and gherkins with my french toast but found out they were actually something called a luna grape, and we also made it through Damascus, Arkansas, without getting caught in a speed trap, which SOMEONE in my family **cough cough Emma cough cough** cannot say. 

I ask you, do these look like pickles or grapes?

4. We went straight to my son and daughter in law's house, narrowly avoiding a severe thunderstorm and getting to the house before the next wave hit. We got to visit for a bit and see (barely) our two grandcats (they're skittish, even though I brought them presents) before checking into our Airbnb and then meeting the two of them for dinner and an evening at our Airbnb.

His white coat was hanging by the door and
I couldn't resist!

5. While we were visiting after dinner, my son was poking around the house we were staying in, peeking in closets, opening drawers, tapping on the fish tank, and picking up and analyzing each item on the book shelf in the living room. The last thing he picked up was a round box that had a plaque on it and engraved with someon'e name. The lid was loose, so he opened it and looked inside, pulled out a plastic bag, and said, "Why would someone keep sand in this?" Guess what? NOT sand. Cremains. He hastily put it back (AFTER the rest of us yelled at him to do so), but it certainly was the most interesting thing I've ever seen in an Airbnb.

6. The wind changed direction and became pretty fierce, and small branches were even falling out of the trees when my son and DIL left, and shortly after that, we heard a boom outside and the power went out. It was definitely the sound of a transformer blowing, but none of the other houses on the cul-de-sac lost their power, which was odd. It was fairly heavily wooded behind the house, and we couldn't tell if any of the homes back there were affected or not. I sent a message to our Airbnb host to let her know, then texted my son to find out the name of the power company so I could report it. We were using the flashlights on our phones, but my battery was on 20% and my husband's on 50%, and my son told us there were flashlights in the nightstand in the bedroom, so I'm thankful after all that he snooped around the house!

7. Our host got back to us and kept sending me the updates about the power as she received them (estimated repair by 10 pm, then 12 pm, then no promises after they passed that time). We both slept fitfully, my husband mostly because he couldn't use his CPAP, and me, because (a) I was pretty sure my son had conjured up some kind of spirits from opening the box of cremains, (b) I was worried about the aquarium in the living room and wondering when I would have to find a straw and blow into their water so they wouldn't die, and (c) my husband couldn't use his CPAP. At 4:30, my husband heard voices in the backyard, saw men with headlamps, hoped they were with the power company, and then all the lights in the house came on - yay! Oh, and the fish coughed a bit but were otherwise fine....

8. I had this big plan to take the trail up Pinnacle Mountain on the west side of Little Rock, but apparently it's more of a climb than I am capable of doing (so says my family and they're probably right), so we took an easier hike on a trail that didn't require you to be part mountain goat, but it would have helped. It was about a 3 mile loop (truly a loop and not an up-and-back, as I've made that mistake before and my husband has never let me forget it). Neither my husband nor I fell down, and my son and DIL didn't get so far ahead of us as to lose us, although they may have wanted to. It was really pretty with perfect weather (meaning no rain OR wind).

The doctors.

My dad would say Indians bent this
tree which may or may not be true.

Caught a little golden hour light

Beautyberries. ps Get the "Picture This" app
for identifying plants. So handy!

9. My husband and I squeezed in a little thrift shopping throughout the trip, not really finding anything, although I did find more than one treasure that he wouldn't let me buy.

Caption this yourself

Mama Mama is a Llama

10. My daughter was in Fayetteville for homecoming (different part of Arkansas from where we were) and left her cat at our house with our three so Calvin wouldn't be lonely. I don't know what went on while all of us were gone, but after she left this morning to go back to Kansas City, our three cats have slept pretty much non-stop, and she reported that Calvin has done the same once she got him back home. At least we ended with the same number of cats we started with!

I hope you got rain if you needed it or had beautiful weather when you wanted it. I hope you saw people you love and ate too much food because you could. I hope you spend some time becoming one with nature or one with a comfy chair, whichever best suits you, maybe even both. I hope if you haven't counted your thankfuls lately that you do so starting today.

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Monday, October 11, 2021

Fast Week, Faster Weekend

The week went by much faster than I expected it would. Unfortunately, the weekend did as well, and now it's Monday and the Ten Things of Thankful blog hop is about to draw to a close. Here are mine for the week:

There are super cute bats hanging from the ceiling of my classroom that were kind of a pain in the ass to make but worth it. 

Feeling batty

It's one week until I get to see my son and his wife for the first time since right after they graduated from medical school. They're kind of busy with their residencies, so we're lucky to get a couple of days with them.

I'm thankful for sleeping nugs. There is nothing much sweeter than the sound of them sleeping while lullabies are playing in the background.

My daughter got invited to go to a KC Chiefs football game this weekend. I am thankful she got the opportunity, but I'm also quite jealous, as I've never gotten to go to one IN MY LIFE. 

My daughter, right, and her friend Taylor

One might have enjoyed the game more if (a) they were a duck and (b) if the Chiefs had actually played well and won, but she had a wonderful time in spite of the rain, severe thunderstorm, losing team, and that Travis Kelce didn't spy her in the stands and whisk her away, Maybe next time.

I hope Kelce could see her from here.

I'm thankful that my husband and I both agreed that, after enduring five episodes of Squid Game on Netflix, it just wasn't that good and we are not going to finish out the series. If you watched it and liked it, I'd like to know why. Did I miss something?

It FINALLY feels like fall. Maybe the trees will get the memo and change colors now.

I'm really loving the Urban Decay Naked 2 Basics eye shadow palette. I've finally decided that I cut corners and save money often enough that I can justify this little splurge. The colors are, well, basic and neutral, they stay on, and NONE OF THEM ARE GLITTERY. Nobody over 30 needs glitter in their eye shadow, I'm telling you, and over, say, 60? HELL, no.

Graham crackers. I really like graham crackers.

My favorite take away from this week's church sermon: These ARE the good ol' days.

Be grateful for all gifts, big and small! If you didn't join us this weekend, then by golly, you should do it next one! Look for the link on Friday mornings.

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Monday, October 4, 2021

Be The Change!

 My husband's chair makes a mysterious noise that's something between a whistle and a squeak. It happens every time he breathes. I'm not thankful for this, because it annoys the crap out of me, but I AM thankful for the following, and thus begins this week's Ten Things of Thankful:

I am thankful for Vicks Vaporub, and not for the reason it's intended. If you have a chore to do that includes a distasteful, overpowering odor, smear a little Vicks under your nose first. Poopy diaper? No problem! Barf? No problem! Hint: if you put a mask on after applying, it works even better!

I'm thankful for buttered popcorn for supper.

I'm thankful that the US Constitution gives us the right to assemble.

I'm thankful I was able to participate in the Women's March for Reproductive Rights in Kansas City this past weekend. Be the change you want to see in the world!

I'm thankful my daughter's apartment is literally across the street from the Women's March venue, so I didn't have to deal with parking or worry where I'd find a bathroom.

I'm thankful my daughter got her precious orange kitty, Calvin, to keep her company while she goes to law school in a bit city. They needed each other. 

I'm thankful for a fun weekend with our daughter that included lots of eating, talking, laughing, and playing with Calvin.

I'm thankful that when I found out I cannot parallel park on the left side of a street (it was one-way, before you think I've lost my mind), there was no one around to witness my miserable fail but me.

I'm thankful that my first movie experience since the pandemic began was at a theater with roomy, reclining seats, that everyone adhered to the mask mandate, and that my daughter and I got to enjoy "Dear Evan Hansen" together.

I'm thankful that I got to attend my favorite church while we were in Kansas City. I've said it before, and I'll say it again (sorry, but I'm warning you that it's gonna happen), I wish I could attend this church in person every week, but I am grateful for them streaming it on Facebook so I can attend without, well, attending.

And there you have it. I hope you have oodles of thankfuls for this past week and the weeks to come, and I hope you'll consider writing a post about them and linking up with us here at the Ten Things of Thankful.

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Wednesday, September 29, 2021

Handle: A Six Sentence Story

The attorney walked up to the witness stand where the woman, head bowed, sat, shoulders slumped, her hands in her lap as they twisted a tissue, and said, "Tell the court, in your own words, just what happened."

She spoke, softly at first, then her voice grew stronger as the tissue twisted tighter and tighter, "At first, it was some plastic containers, you know, like from the deli, and different sizes, but the lids would fit any of them, and all the leftovers started going in them. Then the jars started, and it went from him washing empty jelly jars and re-using them to buying canning jars from the store, and he was putting leftovers in those. Next thing I knew, he was prowling in thrift stores, looking for a different kind of jar, these squared-off ones with interchangeable lids he said were called Golden Harvest canisters, and even though he insisted canisters were different, all I could see was jars, jars, jars; jars in the refrigerator filled with soup and vegetables and milk and iced tea, and in the cupboards filled with oats and pasta and nuts and candy, and on the counter filled with flour and sugar and empty plastic bags, and then he filled one with cat food, cat food, and I just couldn't handle it any longer, and I, I...."

Her voice trailed off as tears spilled down her cheeks, and as she silently wept, the attorney placed a large photograph on an easel, and a collective gasp came from every member of the courtroom as they took in the scene: the kitchen, the broken glass, the body, the jars and jars and jars and jars.

With hardly more than a glance at the easel, the judge rose from the bench, raised her gavel, and said, "Justified," as the courtroom broke into cheers.

No jury would convict me....


Linking up with Denise at Girlie On The Edge's Blog for Six Sentence Stories with the prompt "handle."

Sunday, September 26, 2021

Guest Post For This Week's Thankfuls!

I had a request for a guest post for my Ten Things of Thankful, and after giving it a little thought, I decided to let him go for it. Here's Lewis, my tuxedo cat, with his list of Ten Things of Thankful.

Hey, this is Lewis. It's my birthday (I'm a big THREE), and I wanted a turn with this tappy tappy thing my hooman mom spends so much time on (and gets mad when I walk across it) so I could tell you what I'm thankful for. 

Well, my hooman mom is first. She pets me and rubs my belly. She cleans my poo poo box and feeds me (not as often as I'd like, but still). I don't like it when she tries to shave my booty, but I appreciate the effort (not going to let it happen again and I don't think she'll try it again anyway). I can't help it if my poo gets hung up in my luscious, long fur, can I? Besides, if I run REALLY REALLY fast, I can outrun it. Sometimes. 

I'm not supposed to be here....

I can't forget my birth mom. She was a good mama. She came back to look for me and my brothers and sisters when we were in a house fire as itty bitty babies, and we were reunited and taken to a foster home to grow big and healthy. That's when my hooman family adopted me and one of my brothers. Extra big thanks to my hooman mom's friend Ruth for finding me on instagram (I TOLD you I am luscious - started out as an Instagram influencer...) and telling my mom about me and the rest of my family.

Helping with a sewing project.

I'm thankful for my brother, Finn. He is not as big as me and I can scare him and rough him up and get his share of our food, and I also like playing chase with him in our house.

Baby pic of me and my brother Finn.

I'm thankful I can see in the dark. There were flashy boom booms the other night, and then my hooman dad was stumbling around in the dark, but I could see just fine! 

Enjoying my ottoman.

I'm thankful for pop tops on my cat food cans and good ears. I can hear my mom crack one of those open from a dead sleep while upstairs and on the other side of the house. 

I am thankful for the big chair and ottoman my mom bought for me. I let her sit in it sometimes.

Sharing my ottoman with mom and sister.

I'm thankful for my hooman sister who comes home sometimes and plays with me. I like it when she plays laser pointer with me and when she waves around the feather on a stick.

I'm not as thankful for my hooman brother, because he has big scary feet, but he does play with me, so yeah. 

I'm thankful for my hooman uncle who buys me presents.

Wasn't supposed to be here, either.

I guess I'm thankful for my big sister, Nora Pearl. She was already here when my brother and I moved in, and she did things for us that our mom used to do, like snuggle us and let us nurse on her (my hooman mom said that was weird) and she gave us baths (Finn still lets her do that, but I'm too big for my sister to bathe me). Hooman mom says I'm not very nice to her now, and she's always yelling at me to leave her alone and quit tea bagging her (which I don't get, since the vet took my tea bags out a long time ago). But if I bug her enough, I can get her food, and it's pretty funny to chase her and make her tail get all poofy.

See? Sometimes we get along!

I have to go now, because the window is open and the curtain is blowing and I have to try to catch it. Then maybe I'll chew on the windowsill a little, nibble on some kitty kibbies, knock some stuff off the dresser, yarf up a hair ball on the rug, and take a nap. Have you written your Ten Things of Thankful post yet? You should.

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Monday, September 20, 2021

Win Some, Lost This One

 I'm watching the Chiefs, wondering why every game has to be a nail biter. Can I write a Ten Things of Thankful post AND watch the last quarter of this game? Let's find out!

It was hot and dry this week (again), but I think, THINK this may be the last week of that.

Movement time with my nugs at school. I love singing and dancing and jumping around with them, and I'm grateful I am able to do so at my advanced age....

We cooked this week at school, stirring up Applesauce Pancakes, and no one sneezed into the batter. 

My husband and I hit a few thrift stores and flea markets last weekend and scored two Fiestaware dessert plates for fifty cents a piece. They are around $12 each new, and these are in perfect condition!

Big eating week at school this past week: biscuit day, tater tot casserole day, and hamburger day.

My plantar fasciitis is (saying this guardedly) better. 

Homemade ice cream sandwiches, which I made today. They are delicious.

Co-workers who cheered me up when I was having a rough day.

Funny memes. Here's one:

Well, I'm not thankful for the outcome of the Chiefs game. Ouch. But it was a well-played game by both teams, my life doesn't change one way or the other due to the outcome, and I don't bet, so I'm not out anything except a couple of finger nails.

And that's the list for this week. 

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Monday, September 13, 2021

No Thanks To The DMV

I sort of missed my own blog hop last week, but Labor Day Weekend messed me up. I kept thinking I'd write my TToT post on Monday evening, but then I forgot it was Monday and not Sunday (because, you know, three day weekend), and then it was Tuesday and NOT Monday and I missed it. Also missed Six Sentence Story for pretty much the same reason. Sigh. 

How's about some thankfuls?

1. My birthday was over Labor Day weekend, and I got a surprise tray of cupcakes from one of my fave student workers that were BEAUTIFULLY decorated. . . .

Look REALLY CLOSELY at them.

2. I also got my Real ID, but not without difficulty. My husband texted me on Wednesday morning to remind me my driver's license expired on Sunday. Oopsie. I drove to the DMV in the next town over (the one here smells like feet) to get it, but I was told my marriage license wasn't good enough to prove I was the same person as my birth certificate said I was; they had to have a certified true copy, "with the embossed seal on it." I was told I would have to go to the Recorder of Deeds office to get it and it was already closed, so just to go there on Thursday, get the copy "with the embossed seal on it" and I could get my Real ID. 

I was really cutting it close to the ol' deadline, so I had to use my planning time on Thursday to go to the Recorder's office for the true copy, you know, the one with the embossed seal on it, then back to the DMV. I estimated the whole thing to take me about an hour, including drive time, and I'd still have half an hour of planning time, but when I walked into the Recorder's office, they told me they only had access to marriage licenses from Jasper County, and I got married in Vernon County. I said, "The woman at the DMV told me I could get it here," and they said, "Yeah, they keep telling people that. Someone should tell them not to," to which I answered, "I think YOU should be the one that tells them."  I then asked if the Vernon County Recorder could send the recorded license electronically, but the answer was an emphatic no, because (why?) IT HAD TO HAVE THE EMBOSSED SEAL ON IT. 

Quite pissed off about the whole thing, I called school to let them know I wouldn't be back after all, called the Vernon County Recorder's office and told them I was on my way there to get a true copy of my marriage license, and then drove the one hour it takes to get there. The very nice ladies in the Recorder's office had my copy ready for me when I walked in and handed it to me. I looked at it, then turned it over and looked again before asking, "Where's the embossed seal?!"

"Oh, we don't do an embossed seal here. We just use a stamp."

Breathe. Breathe. BREATHE.

There. Was. No. Reason. It. Couldn't. Have. Been. Sent. Electronically.


I drove over to the Vernon County DMV, gave them all my paperwork, waited while the clerk checked it, and then she said, "I need your birth certificate." 

The last time I had seen it, I had been at the Jasper County DMV. I frantically began rummaging through my bag where the rest of the papers had been, and as I searched, I said to the clerk, "I just want you to know that if my birth certificate is not in this bag, I am going to ugly cry right here and now." She was all of about 20 years old, and I don't think she had been adequately trained for that scenario, but fortunately, I found the birth certificate tucked way down in the bag, and no tears were shed. 

I had to pass a vision test, WHICH I DID WITHOUT MY GLASSES, so I am no longer restricted, even though I wouldn't trust myself to drive without them even if the DMV does. Besides reading the letters in the top row, the test also includes a check of your peripheral vision which my dad cheats on and they've never caught him at it. I did it without cheating.

Last step was the photo. I popped a pose for the camera, but the clerk told me I had to stand with my shoulders straight, so there went the flattering angle. I tried to get a little head tilt in there, but I got caught at that, too, but the photo isn't too horrid, and I'm sure if the clerk at the  Vernon County DMV keeps her OWN thankful list, the fact that I finally left was right at the top of her list. 

3. Okay, #2 was kind of long. I'll try to be more succinct with the rest of the list. I am thankful for a lovely birthday weekend at the lake house with my husband, daughter, and dad, plus our three cats and my daughters newly adopted cat, and there were no fights from anyone, two legged or four legged.

My Finn keeping an eye on my daughter's
cat as he relaxes in the bathtub.

Harmony: Finn, Nora Pearl, Lewis, and 
Calvin (inside the pride house)

4. I'm thankful that the two legged members of the household don't actually fight. Can't say the same for the four legged ones.

5. A couple of weeks ago, I wrote about wanting, and finding, a house dress/muumuu at a thrift store. I was (and continue to be) baffled that you can't walk into a store like JC Penney or Walmart and find a house dress (they are also called house coats or dusters). I see women wearing them sometimes (they don't seem to understand the "house" part of "house dress"). Where do these old ladies find them, then? My husband found out the answer was the internet, and he bought me three, THREE of them for my birthday! They are so comfy and I love them. Don't ask me what made me want one in the first place, but they are THE BOMB.

Searsucker house dress. I'm fancy.

6. This sticker on one of the house dresses made our whole family laugh:

7. If you're from Kansas City, you will understand the significance of this snow globe I got from my daughter. Fun fact: it was printed on a 3D printer, which is something I cannot wrap my head around. 

The Nelson/Atkins Museum shuttlecock

8. Temperatures are still reaching the 90s in the afternoons, but the nights are cooler and the air just feels different. Fall is almost here!

9. The Chiefs won the first game of the season with a nail biter. I'm glad football season is back!

10. I got my post written. 

It's never too late to be thankful. 

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