Sunday, July 31, 2005

The Big 5-0!

Tomorrow, August 1, is Sam's 50th birthday.  Wish him a very Happy Birthday.  He's very quiet and rather modest, but I'll be sure to show him all your good wishes.  For this special occasion, his family planned a surprise party.  And he was surprised, as he thought we were just going out to dinner. Friends and family were in attendance and a good time was had by all.  I took my camera but got too involved with chatting so I didn't get any pics of the party.  :(  But, as the party was winding down, I noticed some people on the path of the levy and snapped a few shots.  The pics turned out rather well I think.


Friday, July 29, 2005

It's So Hot...

I'm too late for John Scalzi's Monday Photo Shoot - How Hot Is It?  But that doesn't mean I can't show my photo anyways....

It's so hot here...shortly after a cement truck drove over the Southway Bridge, the cement span just drooped from the weight.  How's that for irony?



Guess I should let you know, I warped the bridge using Paint Shop Pro, my photo editing program.  Looks pretty realistic, tho, doesn't it?

7/30 - Was playing more with Paint Shop Pro and had some real fun with this pic.  Click here to see what I did.

But I Don't Have Opposable Thumbs!!!!!

How do you drive a 'chow hound' Labrador crazy?



Rum says, "Doggie treats!!!! Yea!!!!!  Happy dog!!!!  I want two...three....just give me the whole jar!"

"Hmmmm, I can smell them, so I know there are treats inside.  What's this on top?  It seems to be in my way.  Maybe I can move it with my nose."

"Not fair!  This is torture!  Pllllleeeeeeeeeeeezzzzzzzzzzzzzze help me.  I can't get it off!  See my very sad face....don't you feel anything for me right now?"


Are we cruel, or what?


Yes, Rumbeau finally got some treats.  And to think that the mere addition of a small appendage to our hand made all the difference in this dogs world.

Thursday, July 28, 2005

The Power of Three

How many times does it take?
How many trials before I break?
Just how far am I willing to go?
For years I have tried, and now I know.

Happy endings are designed to put faith to the test
Just believe they say, relax, whatever happens is for the best
Do not try to force it, that's not the way it works
You must place your soul's trust in the power of the universe

Most things will go your way
While some things just will not
Its all designed to show yourself
Exactly what you've got.

It wasn't very smooth sailing, but I knew it wouldn't be
Infused with hope I opened my heart to every possibility
With wonder as my guide, and faith to show the way
I spread my wings so willing, ready to start a brand new day.

But there are just too many people near the king of compromise
Too much interference, I wonder if he'll ever realize
Things just got too big, I think, there's no simplicity
It's all beyond the reach of a simple girl like me.

How many times does it take?
How many trials before I break?
Just how far am I willing to go?
For years I have tried, and now I know.

(c) 2005 DLC

~~Do not think you can direct the course of love, for love if it finds you worthy, directs your course.  ~Kahlil Gibran~~

Wednesday, July 27, 2005


Buried in their work.  UPDATE 7/30 - was playing with this photo using Paint Shop Pro and made a very interesting discovery.  Click here to see the result.

Yep, another picture of clouds...but this time, I'm up in the clouds.  :-D

Tuesday, July 26, 2005

Opening Doors and Crossing Lines

Someone once told me when it comes to writing, 'Stick to what you know.'

This is what I know.  I just got off the phone with someone in my family.  This person expressed concern about my journal; how having such personal information about me and other people on the Internet for anyone to see could lead to something terrible.  We all hear about using care on the Internet, as there are many horrible people lurking in the shadows.  Faceless people we cannot see, people who mean to do us harm.  The words hit me, hard.  Much harder than I can tell you.  And I said, "I had no idea you were living in such fear."  But, truth be told, I did know.

And I think about it, a lot.

There have been times these past few months when I seriously considered this fact.  It is a fact of life.  We live in a time when information about anyone is practically delivered to our lap.  All we need is a computer and the Internet and we can find them.  And as much as we all believe the AOL Journal community is a warm and safe place to be, that is only true about us journalers...but there are others who read.  And it is those individuals who concern me.  One individual, in particular.

You see, I am hiding from someone.

Twenty years ago, was July 1985...I left him.  I wrote about that moment in my life in an essay and while I changed some things about it, the essay tells the story.  I wrote about what I know, as I often do.  But I can't deny that since starting this journal, on many occasions I wondered if this journal would lead him to me.  So I changed my profile and omitted personal information.  I removed my photo from the 'About Me' section (now you know).  I have to be careful, as I have been since that day I left, and especially since meeting Sam, for there are other innocent people in my life now.  And I have to protect them.  I have to think about them now, not just myself.

But I am tired of hiding.  I am tired of worrying that something I do could throw off the cover I have laid over myself.  I love to write; writing gives me freedom on many levels.   Maybe since so much time has passed, I no longer need to worry, and I am worrying too much.  And I ask myself, why should I hold everything back?  Why should I be forced to live in the shadows, never enjoying the rays of the sun just because of something another person did to me?  Why should I live in fear of what could happen?

Why shouldn't I experience, and share, all the wonders my life has to offer?

So here I sit.  Wondering.  Do I stay open, or closed?  And if I stay open, what price will I pay?  In the past, there was always a price.  In the past.  I know what this person is capable of doing, he showed me many times.  Roughly a year before I did finally leave him, when I had made up my mind to do it, something happened that stopped me dead in my tracks.  Literally.  And it made me think.  About what could happen to me if I left him.

We lived in a house with a back yard.  Ours was the second house on the street.  Behind our house was another house, and in it lived a single mother with several children...four or five...I can't recall.  Every night on my drive home I passed her street and could see her house.  One night on the way home from work I noticed police cars, an ambulance, and many other vehicles parked in front of her house.  And I noticed the yellow 'DO NOT CROSS' police tape...everywhere.  And I wondered what was going on, but none of the neighbors knew.  The next day, I found out.

She was a victim of domestic violence and had recently pressed charges against her husband for abuse.  The court issued a restraining order.  He violated the restraining order, the police arrested him, he went to jail, and he served his sentence.  Then he got out.  He went straight to her house, in the middle of the night, and finished what he had started.  Then, he hung himself on a belt in her closet, but only after he had stabbed her 17 times.

17 times.


Every night for months I came home, I walked through my house and stood at the back window, looking at her house.  Thinking.  Numb.  Knowing.  A woman had been murdered in that house.  Right in my backyard.  That could be me.  She stood up to him and his abuse and ended it.  So she thought.  But it ended with her lifeless body lying on a cold sheet of metal in some coroner's office building.  Just another statistic.  That is what her life amounted to.  Who knew what discoveries awaited her?  What magic she could have created? No one, because a violent man snuffed out her flame.  There has to be more to my life.  I'm not going to be another statistic.  Every night I stood there silently looking out that window, knowing I had to take every step, carefully.  I was chained to his side.  No one could help me.  Not the police, not the courts, not even my family.  Previously he had threatened them and used those threats to manipulate my behavior.  So I waited, until the right time.  I knew the time would come.  Then I made my move.

And I lived, to tell.  I just hope that in the telling, he doesn't find me.  I hope it is over and that I no longer have to live in the fear.  Every day I hope and I pray with everything I have that the passing of so many years has put him so far behind me that he will never find me now.  That he no longer cares about me.  I rationalize it in my mind.  Back then, he didn't like computers.  Had no use for them, he said.  But everyone has them now.  Most everyone is connected to the Internet.  My fear of him has kept me from doing many things.

I am a survivor, with much to tell.  And share.  To help.  With hope.  For tomorrow. 

These eyes have seen so much.  I can no longer keep them closed, for it serves me no purpose.  It serves no purpose at all.

So, what do I do?  How do I calm the fears of those concerned for my safety...our safety.  There is a lot at stake here, and I have always believed I am supposed to write.  To tell my story.  But am I willing to sacrifice everything to fulfill a dream?  I've had so many dreams yanked out from under me.  What is more important, living my dream or living my life?  And, can I have both, without any twist of fate, without any consequence, without any price to pay?

For once, can I just have both and not have to worry about the outcome.

Do any of you, after reading headlines and hearing the news, every think about who may be reading your journal?  Do you worry, or hesitate when you write?

Talk to me, tell me what you are thinking...

Monday, July 25, 2005

What's in a Name

Sometimes I wonder, when my parents named me if they had any idea how many names I would actually end up with.  Robin's comment in my prior entry got me thinking about it.  Sure, I have my given name, but I have a whole treasure trove of nicknames.  The majority of which were given to me by Sam.  And I don't know why.

It started out innocently enough, as all things often do.  Then, as the months passed by, different nicknames evolved.  Oddly enough, I found it rather endearing.  At first, he called me Missy, which turned into Misster, then Mistaruni, and that turned into Runi, and it stayed like that for awhile.  Until he decided to start calling me Stempy, as in Ren & Stempy (don't know where that came from...I don't resemble him at all!).  Stempy turned into Stemparuni (huh?), then he dropped the Stempa and we were back to Runi again.  For awhile he switched back and forth between Runi and Rutie.  At that point I decided there was no rhyme or reason to these nicknames and I just needed to go with the flow of it.  Then out of the blue, after watching True Grit, he suddenly started calling me Cogburn, which led to Berniture and we now have Bernie.

So, what's with this man's obsession with nicknames?  Well, see, Sam is his nickname.  His given name is actually Gary.  Sam, is short for Sambo, as in the story about the little boy and the tigers...and of course the restaurant.  As a small child, Gary loved pancakes, and someone observed how his affinity for pancakes was like that little boy, Sambo.  So, they started calling him Sambo, and never quit.  As he got older, it became Sam.  Family and close personal friends call him Sam; to everyone else he is Gary.  Which was confusing at first, but there is a positive side to it.  If the phone rings, and the caller asks for Gary, it's either someone from work or someone who doesn't really know him.

So, Robin, if you were confused before...well, what about now?  And remember, your the one who decided to start calling me Maggie.

I did say I am a complicated creature, you know.

Every morning...

This morning before he left for work, he paused by the side of our bed, leaned down and left a gentle kiss on my face.  Just as he has done, each and every morning through our many years together.  He does this just for me.

There is a peacefulness I find in that one gentle kiss.  I can think of no better way to start a new day than to wake with the fresh kiss of someone who loves me lingering on my skin. 

This morning after he placed his kiss, he waited, knowing within moments my sleepy eyes would open.  And they find him standing there, gazing at me with a smile on his face.

"I have to go to work now, Bernie," he said softly.  "Okay?"

I was lying on my right side, with my left knee drawn up, both my arms wrapped snuggly around my pillow.  Sleepily, I replied, '' Ummm...'k."  Then I closed my eyes and cozied up even closer to my pillow.

He stood there for another moment or two, watching me, before he turned and walked away.  Just as he has always done, each and every morning, just as I know he will always do.

This he does for me.

Friday, July 22, 2005

Wise ol Ben, Answered

According to the receipt given to me by CoinStar, the Culligan bottle contained:
Item   Quantity

Dollars (coin) 1 
Quarters  461   
Dimes     322
Nickels   130    
Pennies  483


Dollars (paper) 8 

1 plastic button (now how'd that get in there?)

Total value $167.78

Closest guess $193.43 (happysunshine came within $25.64)

Now I'm off to spend that money.  Time for me to take a break from the demands of work and go have some fun!  See ya when I return...


From the Sea to the Oak
An Alaska breeze carries me on wings
326 ways I have found to your heart
All a half an hour before Noon on Saturday.

Thursday, July 21, 2005

Men Who Paint Their Toenails Purple...And Annual Exams

Oh, I know what you're thinking.  WHAAAAA?  Don't worry, your vision is just fine.  The title just summarizes my day.  And no doubt by now some of you are thinking to yourself, I gotta start hanging out with Dona.  She's never bored.

You're right.  Most of the time.  Either that or I just have a very unique way of looking at things.   Ummm, little of both.

This being the third Thursday of the month, and last month being the end of the quarter, today was our quarterly board meeting.  The July meeting is really more of a picnic as it is held outside at one of our many state parks.  My day started off just like any other, but by 9 a.m. I was shifting from low to high gear to get things done.  Weren't going to have a Budget meeting today, but the State Transportation Department is being difficult about a construction project and critical issues soon arise about our cash flow.  Emergency meeting is called to precede the regularly scheduled board meeting so any recommendations made by the budget committee can be voted on by the board...if we have a quorum.

This won't be boring, I promise you.

I arrive at the park a little early, and no one is around.  It's 1:15 and 103 degrees outside, the meeting won't start until 1:30 but I've got air and great tunes, so no prob.  Am soon joined by committee members and my boss, so we stroll over to one of the many park tables to wait for the remaining members.

Now, on my committee is an individual named Jeff.  Jeff is a mover and a shaker, if you know what I mean.  He's not a rubber stamp kind of board member; no, he takes his role seriously and asks questions.  Lots of questions.  Nine years ago when I first took over the financial management responsibilities, I knew I would have to prove myself to the board members.  It goes with the territory whenever you are dealing with other peoples money and I expect it.  For the first two or three years I went to each meeting prepared to answer lots of questions.  Jeff insisted I 'drill-down' any expense line item over $100 on the financial statement, in detail, by invoice.  Information is power.  And if trust was to be earned, I had to earn it the hard way.  No problem, I expected it.  And after a time, I proved myself trustworthy and many board members comfort level with me increased and they stopped asking me questions.  Except Jeff.  Jeff always had a question for me.  Always.  I said he takes it seriously, didn't I?

It got to the point, with Jeff always having a question for me, that once I completed my financial presentation, when I asked "Are there any questions?" not only did I look right to Jeff, but there was a sea of 30 - 40 heads simultaneously turning in Jeff's direction. Our version of the Stadium Wave, Board Room style.  This was always followed by either myself or another board member saying Jeff's name, just in case he needed a nudge.  And Jeff never disappointed.  I often wondered if he stayed up late at night thinking of probing questions for me.  I can just see him rubbing his hands together in anticipation of a new way to put me on the spot, as it were.  Because that is what he really wanted to do, in the beginning.

This became such a regular occurrence that some board members began to affectionately refer to the interaction between Jeff and myself as 'The Jeff and Dona Show.'  Frankly I think that particular person was exceedingly drunk that night, but nonetheless, the name stuck.  I hear it mentioned at every board meeting.  Now, the premise of 'The Jeff and Dona Show' is simple, really.  Jeff's primary objective is to stump me and get me to utter those three little words..."I don't know."  So, you know what my role is.  I must avoid uttering those three little words.  This always results in some very, very interesting dialogue between Jeff and myself, and the other board members.  And I have learned, quite quickly, how to think on my feet.

I always look forward to 'The Jeff and Dona Show' do all the board members.  Financial reports are the most boring presentation to give or receive.  Before, during my presentation as I scanned the room, I used to see a lot of slumped bodies with glassey-eyed faces looking back at me.  'Oh no, I'm losing them!'  Not any more.  Now everyone is sitting straight up, leaning in, waiting in anticipation for my closure, and the lead-in for the show to begin.  I've even witnessed some robust elbowing between smiling members during my wrap-up.

So, now you're wondering what happened at the Board meeting today?  Nothing.  Because I had a doctor appointment scheduled this afternoon at 2:30, the same time the board meeting started.  And no, I didn't schedule the appointment on purpose to avoid my responsibility.  Board meetings, for the past nine years, have always been evening meetings, conducted at 6 or 7 p.m.  So, when the doctor's office scheduled my appointment for 2:30 p.m., I didn't see any conflict.  No one told me the meeting time got bumped up until two days ago, and I'm sorry, but I'm not changing my appointment. for the title.  I'm getting to that!

While we are waiting for one other budget member to arrive, Jeff and I start chatting.  He's dressed in summer style, short sleeved shirt, shorts, and sandals.  When I get to his feet, I have to stop.  Oh.  Now isn't this interesting.  He's still chatting, and I'm sitting there with a smirk on my face because three of his toes on both feet are painted...a real deep purple.  The big toe, the next toe, skip one, and the next.  Purple.  Do I dare?  I can't.  Oh yes I can!  He's got it coming!

Jeff casually finishes his tale and casts a glance at me.  I'm sitting there with a smirk on my face.  Then I tilt my head to the side and ask, "Jeff, do you always paint your toe nails or is this just a summer kind of thing?"

He gives me a sheepish grin as everyone else has to take a look.  Says he, "I painted them for my 50th birthday."

Then my boss chimes in.  "Oh, when did you turn 50?"

"Four years ago," replies Jeff with a laugh.

"Sorry, but that polish is not four years old!" I protest.  "Besides, purple is a fall color.  For summer, the appropriate color is pink."  This is further supported by the display of four femininely sandaled feet aptly polished in summery pink.  "If you are going to paint your toe nails during the summer, then do it right, and paint all of them, not just three on each foot."

"I'll do it any way I want to," he replies.

"This from the man who always questions my financial statements!" I observed.

He grins, and this is followed by a robust belly laugh.  Think Santa Claus, without the beard, more brown hair, less weight, but with those rosy cheeks.  "Well, I guess my credibility just went down the drain."

"Yep," I nod.  "Nine years worth.  Right down the drain."

I love moments like this.

We had the meeting, Jeff was unusually quiet, then I had to leave.  It was time for the doctor annual physical.  It was one of those compl-e-e-e-t physicals.

Sure, you guys can paint your toe nails purple or any color of the rainbow...all you want.  But when was the last time I saw a man anywhere near a mammogram machine?  


July Artsy Essay

For this month's essay, Judith has this to say.

Tell us about lessons you have learned, insights you have had, people you have met who have changed your life in some way. Share the reason(s) that you journal, and what this outlet has come to mean in your life. Take some time to really consider the rich tapestry of human experience here and share with us your heart songs. Be funny, serious, contemplative............. the door is open to all forms of expression.

Why I Keep a Journal

Oh Judith, a heady topic.  How long have I got?  All the time in the world?  Well, grab a cushion and settle in.

The reasons I write are many, but the purpose is singular.  I write in my journal to reach out and connect with another like-minded individual.

One person. 

One person-at-a-time...because it is time.

Writing has always been something I did...beyond self-expression, beyond sharing and sending messages, writing is more than a communication tool.  It is more like an exercise, a way I can test myself, and stretch what I know into the outer boundaries of what I don't know.

It is about discovering...

                     and uncovering...                   my comfort zone...

                                                 while waking and shaking things up a bit...                       so I don't fall back asleep.

I don't ever want to go back to sleep.

Writing keeps my mind alert, and my psyche highly tuned.  I learned that many years ago.  But I stopped writing and I took a nap.  A very long nap.  Then someone woke me up and I spent the next five years gathering lost memories. But, I got tired and fell asleep, again.  People told me I couldn't write.  Then I lost my job.  So I went to college.  Where I had to write...a lot.

But I didn't mind.

In college I rediscovered writing and I loved the energy I felt when I was writing.  It was those 4 o'clock in the morning sitting at the computer with my cup of coffee while everyone else was asleep pouring over fifteen books to prove a thesis or disprove a theory.  I was writing.  I LOVED IT!  Wow!  I forgot what it was like.  That yearning for more, one more sentance, one more idea, one more point.  All those ideas running amok in my mind, and seeing them in black and white but in someone else's words!  Yes!  I am not alone in my thinking!  Other people think this way, too!  After I graduated, I stopped writing...creatively.  Sure, there were business letters and such, but, that's not the same.  That's zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz.

I missed the energy.  And I felt sleepy again.

That's when the AOL CDs started showing up in my mailbox.  All the time.  Every week the postal person delivered two or three...sometimes five, to my home.  And I'd toss them in the garbage.  AOL?  Thanks, but no thanks.  Then after about six months of this (Knock...knock, is there anybody home?  HELLO?), as I held a newly delivered AOL 9.0 CD in my hand, I paused.  What's going on here?  Maybe there's a reason why these CDs keep coming, out of the blue.  No circular file this time.  Straight into my room, and onto my computer.  Two days later, I found AOL Journals.  Hmmmm.  Interesting.  People writing.  Lots of people writing.  Opining.  Sharing.  Provoking.  Laughing.  Crying.  Joking.  Stories.  Prose.  Poetry.  Photographs.

Hey!  I can do that!

That was last October.  And I haven't stopped writing since.  When I write, I am open.  And closed.  Not so much closed now as I was, oh say, a year ago.  In just the past nine months, I have grown in leaps and bounds, and in ways I had never experienced...until now.

It's rewarding.

There's a simple delight I find in writing something that another person can connect to.   I like taking a thought, and launching it off my pad and into the world.  Let it bounce around a bit, see how far it goes, and where it lands...if it lands.   Heaven forbid it should go pffffffft or someone shoot it down, but it's possible.  I know not everyone who reads my words will consider them to be relevant.  So?  They are, after all, my thoughts and if another person wants to just walk on by, then that is okay by me.  That person has someplace else to be at this time.  Carry on, I say.

As for me, I found a place that encourages people to write.  Any time.  Any day.  There is no curfew, but there is TOS, so we do have parameters to stay within.  My journal offers me a place, for more than my thoughts and pictures.  Journals connect...ideas to people...people to ideas and people to people.  I write in my journal to connect to life.

Oh, and, since installing AOL on my computer last October, I have only received two AOL CDs in the mail.  In nine months time.  Only two CDs.

Message received and noted.

Tuesday, July 19, 2005

Wise 'ol Ben

About a year ago, I started throwing all my coins into a bottle.  A 5 gallon (18.9 litres) Culligan water bottle.  It was Suzy Ormand who gave me the idea; according to Suzy it's amazing how those coins add up over time.  Want to save a little money every day?  Her advice on this particular show was simple, don't spend your coins.  When you get change back, save it.  It adds up.  I thought, okay, I'll give it a shot.

Today, I decided it was time to cash in the stash.  Had to, as the bottle was getting very heavy.  So, I emptied my stash into something a bit more portable and headed down to one of those CoinStar machines I'd seen around town.

Now I know how much I saved during the past year.  And thanks to that CoinStar machine, I know exactly how many quarters, dimes, nickels, and pennies I saved.  For the record, there are no half-dollars in the bottle.  I keep those in a separate stash.  :)

So all you puzzle lovers, care to take a stab at it?  Yes, I did throw some $1 bills in as well, for good measure.  I'll post the answer in a few days.

Takes me back to my days waiting tables in my late teens.  Only there was more paper than metal in my stash.

Monday, July 18, 2005

Take A Moment

One of J-Land's own, Linda in Spokane, is in need of support and much love.  Please drop by and send her and her family your good thoughts and prayers.

Your Monday Photo Shoot: Domestic Wildlife

The Blogfather handed down our marching orders for this week...

Your Monday Photo Shoot: Your neighborhood is full of wildlife no matter where you live. Catch some of it -- in a picture.

Head for the great outdoors in your neighborhood and show us what kind of creatures live there. You can take new pictures, or if you have older pictures that fill the bill, post those instead (one note: since we've done animal picture assignments before, don't recycle pictures you've already used for previous assignments -- get out and show us something new!). Once you've posted them in your Blog or Journal, come back here and leave a link. Let's see the wild life!

So, here's a little something on the wild side.  It looks like a moth, but it had a long proboscus like a hummingbird, and behaved like a hummer as well.  But its a moth, I'm sure.

Now, this is a hummingbird.

Sunday, July 17, 2005

New Chapter

For those of you following my book, Metamorphosis, I just added another chapter.


Saturday, July 16, 2005

Did I mention...

how HOT it was yesterday?

When I left work at 3 pm we hit the century mark, plus 3.  By the time I arrived at the tattoo place at 4 pm I was relieved to be back indoors.

Goodness, it's so hot.

(c) Mary Englebreit

Had a Pepsi Lime with me when I arrived at the tat place, but had to leave it in the car.  It was half drank, and I should have just tossed it right then and there.  Because we all know what happened to that Pepsi, in my hot car, during the next hour, don't we?

Now I'm not big on chemistry, but I'm willing to guess that there was some major molecular shifting and changing going on in that can while my molecules were getting shifted and changed.  An hour later, I'm back in the car looking at the can, and I knew what the situation was, but had pick it up anyway. 

I'm a curious creature.

Yep, it was hot.  Cookin'.  Probably could have boiled an egg in it.

(c) Mary Englebreit

Hot Pepsi is bad, but hot Pepsi with Lime...

At any rate, when I got home, I found myself standing in front of the freezer, with the door wide open.  Oh, now that first blast is awesome, you know.  Had to make myself a little drinky, to celebrate.

Ain't telling ya what I did with the Pepsi...


Just for you sunshine!  This is a better pic, of the tat anyways.  She did an awesome job.  But I wonder, could my pores be any bigger? 

Friday, July 15, 2005

Tattoo Me...

I'm back.  It wasn't that bad actually.  It took an hour, and at first it didn't even bother me, but that is probably due in large part to the location of the tattoo.  Worse part was at the end, when she had to go back over a couple of areas to make the shadows and 3-D effect.  The artist did an excellent job.  Soon as she was done, everyone in the store had to come have a looksee.  So much for me being shy. Can't show you right now, as I am bandaged with lotion on the site.  But in a half an hour, the bandage comes off and I'll 'reveal' it to you.  :)  Skipped the navel piercing.  Maybe another time.

In the mean time, check out some of her other work
Skin Deep Design


Left: The tat, Right: the inspriation.  The design is an old Scottish symbol, called a Luckenbooth, dating back to the 1700's.  I purchased the necklace in 1991 at Edenburgh Castle in Scotland, and from the day I bought it, I told myself I'd have it tattooed on me as well.  That day has arrived.

The pendant measures 5/8" x 3/4" and the tat is just a tad bit larger.  Given how small the tat is, she did a fine job, I think.  The tatt looks a bit distorted because of the angle of the camera and me twisting.  I'll try to get a better one and put it up.

Tats and Tales

I'm going to do it.  I made the appointment.  In two hours I'll walk in the parlor and will leave a marked woman.


Today, I get my tattoo...

Stay tuned.


And no, that isn't the confession that got lost in ether world.  Oh, it wasn't anything bad, or nasty or anything like that.  I was just going to confess about my first time.





First time I was involved in a coup, silly.  Back in college.  What did you think I was talking about?


But first, I need to start using my dictionary again, or learn how to spell. 

I Get By...

...with a little help from my friends.

I don't have too many temper tantrums, or hissy fits, when things go wrong.  But I may have to change my ways.  I think I'm just too laid back...I have to be, because when I have a temper tantrum it gets!  Trust me on this...I'm Scotch-Irish, my mother was a red head, and I'm a Taurus to boot.  When this bull sees
...'nuff said.

Apparently hissy public...can lead to something positive.  Hmmm.  Thank you Rebecca for the trick.  I'm following your tip as I write.  <smile>  Oh, and there are a lot more fonts to select from this way.  I like!  <BIG smile>

You will all be happy to know I did settle down last night.  Yes, I got over the urge to pick up my laptop and throw it outside, on the hot asphalt, into a gazillion pieces.  It's amazing how a couple of glasses of great wine can alter one's perspective on things.  As Jimmy knows, I had a major attitude adjustment last night and an hour after the 'incident' was back to my normal self.  Thank you Jimmy for the post. 

Now I'm feeling pretty smug because I let it out, and learned a new trick.  Whether I will rewrite that particular entry remains to be seen.  It was a confession, and I'm wondering if maybe I should just keep that one to myself.

For awhile, anyway.

Thursday, July 14, 2005

One of these days...

...I'm going to learn to type journal entries off line first, then copy and paste the entries into my journal.

                         Must control temper.                 Temper bad.   Bad.   Bad.   Bad.

                Two &%$-@*#! hours...typing that entry...gone.   Gone.

                                                  Gone.                                       Gone.

I'm too pissed off to retype it now!


                                           I wonder what everyone else is up to?  Maybe I need to go visiting for awhile...



                                                                                                            Stupid computer.

Wednesday, July 13, 2005

Monday Photo Shoot

Your Monday Photo Shoot: Memories of Winter   Well, here we are in the middle of a hot and sultry summer: What better time to remember the crisp, cool days of winters past?

Your Monday Photo Shoot: Cool down on a hot summer day by posting one of your favorite pictures from winters past.

Sounds good to me.  I'm cookin' here and it's only mid-July.  Temps have been in the high 90s.  This morning on the way to work it was 72 degrees at 7:15 a.m.  I'm feelin' the need for a little chillin'.

Winter in the Idaho mountains.  My favorite winter scene.  I love the winter coat on these trees.  The contrast of the white snow against the dark wood just takes my breath away.  Almost looks like a Bev Doolittle painting, doesn't it?

Ah, I do believe it's cooled off a bit.  Just a bit, but it's enough to make a difference where I am.


Somedays are better than others.

Somewhere in Detroit, Michigan a software tech named Mike is enjoying a rather robust belly laugh.  At my expense.

Been having problems...multitudes...with an accounting software conversion.  Computer tech needed the data files zipped and e-mailed to resolve issue.  This required me to download an update and install same on computer.  I did that.  Update will allow for user to click File and select the option Export to ZIP.  Restarted computer, launched accounting software, clicked on File.  No option to Export.  Hmmmm.

Try again.

Nothing.  Same result.

Send message to my friend Mike the software tech, basically saying, "It didn't work!  There is no option to Export!"  Yadda, yadda, yadda.

Receive message from my friend Mike the software tech, asking, "Are you sure the update installed successfully?"

Send message to my friend Mike the software tech, replying in depth what I did.

Can't understand.  Doesn't make sense.  Feeling frustrated.  Staring at software application on screen.  Lightbulb comes on.  Click.  D'OH!

Send message to my friend Mike the software tech, as follows:


:::hitting forehead with palm:::

Feeling rather stupid right now.

ZIP file attached.  Guess it helps if the user first opens the Organization data file before expecting the program to Export that data, eh?

:::sheepish grin::::




Sometimes I amaze myself.



Reply from my friend Mike, the software tech, "Excellent!"


dcmeyer:  Brave soul?  Maybe.  I should tell you this is my fourth accounting conversion in my career; however, the other three went more smoothly and I was able to complete the conversion within three months time.  This conversion is now in its seventh month.  But I'm an optimist.

Tuesday, July 12, 2005


Sometimes it is the heart that is happy to just know, without reason, without any explanation...for in the reasons and explanations the essence of ones inner truth can often be misunderstood, even another.  Such is the dynamic when you choose to sing your heart song out loud!  It is a risk we take in our desire to share the energy we call love--what we know, feel, believe and trust--within ourselves, naturally.  It's all good.  For in sharing the spark, perhaps we hope to light the path of discovery for our sisters and brothers who seek to find the same.  We so want to help them in their journey, to see them on their way.  To send them off, hopeful they will land safely, and gently, in the arms of love.
Who would not want another to feel such depths of emotion, those soaring highs that go hand in hand with the crashing lows?  It's all one package; you can't have one without the other.  There is always smooth sailing for awhile, but into every life a little rain must fall.  So you can either grab your partner's hand and dance to the rhythm of the rain, in the rain, or you can run for cover, and stay dry.
In my youth I ran for cover, always with a backwards glance at the rain.  Growing up, my favorite song was 'McArthur's Park' sung by Richard Harris.  It was the line, 'Someone left my cake out in the rain...' that did it.  That one single line spoke to my heart and to my soul.  I don't know why.  I gave up trying to understand the why many years ago.  I just let it be.  And today when it rains I long to tap my toes through the, with my head flung back, arms and eyes wide open.
Perhaps it is the soothing sensation of feeling cleansed by the rain that beckons me to dance.  For I have been burned.  If I choose to step aside and seek the safety of dry shelter, I will stay dry; and eventfully the heat of my burns will cool, and scar.  And I'll pick at the scars, knowing full well the healing will take twice as long.  I have to touch the roughness of the dry and brittle growth covering my a reminder...of what I do not want. 
If I choose to turn aside and stand in the open, in the rain, I will get drenched, but the heat of my burns will cool quickly, and heal.  And I'll watch the healing, knowing full well the cleansing of the rain washed away the bitter impurities, giving my wound the benefit of a clean site.  The damage can be repaired.  I will let it be...satisfied...all is well and as it should be.
Yet there are times when my heart is happy to just be.  For it knows there are those who do not know, feel, believe or  My heart knows the essence of my truth--my power--will be diminished if shared with those who refuse to believe.  My heart knows they prefer to take without giving, in the shadows they would steal the essence of what I am, and so my heart protects me from falling on their path.  No words, no actions, no reasons will ever explain to them the beauty of what I carry within.  And that's okay, for my heart need not justify the existance of love to anyone.
For love gives of itself.
To everything there is a season and a time to every purpose, under heaven.  Turn, turn, turn.

Thank you Rebecca for the inspiration today.

~~Each day holds a special memory, and days add up to years of life-changing moments.~~
~~Love changes everything.~~
~~May you always reach for the unreachable and grow taller with every step.~~

Monday, July 11, 2005

Finding Things

Today I sat and thought
About yesterday and tomorrow
A soft breeze whispered softly in my ear
Your name, as I wondered why you had to go.

I watched the sun slowly slide down
Until it settled somewhere out of sight
And for a brief moment I saw your smiling face
Shining, just like a beacon amidst the sunlight.

The vision brought a smile to my lips
I felt a twinkle spark in my eyes
Rising to my feet, I paused and wondered
Whether you and I will ever be together under this big blue sky.

(c) 1990 DLL

While doing a bit of cleaning the other day, I came across the above poem I wrote many years ago.  I came across several poems, actually, from several years ago.

Here's another written during my senior year in high school, shortly after I got 'dumped' by the love of my life.  Well, at the time I thought he was...turns out, he wasn't...not even close.   Within a couple of years he was just another guy.

Glancing across the room
I notice memories of you
Yet you are not gone
You live, with every fleeting moment that passes by.
As the song would say,
"Traces of you" is what I see
I get so mad
I feel like burning the memories
But what good would it do?
I would only despise myself
For it afterwards
I let the memories remain
Wiping away dust that gathers from time
All I know are these memories
And what I see, I love.

(c) 1975 DLL


And in case you were wondering, the photo is mine, taken last February inside a car driving across a very bumpy bridge, at dusk.  Weird effect, huh?  I have absolutely no idea how or why it turned out the way it did.  No clue, whatsoever.  I almost deleted that photo.  But, something told me not to.  Camera: Olympus Camedia C-4000 digital.


Daily Thoughts from my 'For Giving Souls' calendar:
~~Sometimes I wish I could peek at tomorrow, but then today wouldn't be today.~~

~~Hope is what holds our dreams and helps them grow into realities.~~
~~Promises build bridges between friends.~~

Friday, July 8, 2005

Calling All Angels...

Clip art courtesy of Print Master.

For those affected by the recent bombings in are in our thoughts and prayers.

We are with you.

Thursday, July 7, 2005

Along the Lines of Life

I'm sitting here drinking an ugly, trying to cool off a bit.  It's getting HOT around here!  Very hot!  Just got back from a visit with Amy, Kari and Baby D.  Baby was kinda cranky today, but is getting more, and more adorable.  Hard to believe she's already 2 months old.

The view from Rita's deck.

Spent some time with my step-Mom, R-r-r-r-rita last night.  It was just the two of us, sitting outside on her deck, drinking whiskey & coke, relaxing and talking.  I usually avoid talking about Dad because Rita has got on with her life and has a new beau, which pleases me very much because she deserves to be happy.  But she always says, "....he's not your Dad."  I know.  No one will ever be Dad.  He was one of kind. 

And so it was that we both found ourselves remincing about him for the first time in years.  Rita reminded me of the time Dad came home a little bit tipsy from a night on the town.  It was summer...and it was hot.  Dad didn't like to run the air conditioning at night, and it was so hot he couldn't sleep.  Now, I've been told my father liked to sleep totally in the buff, and on this particular night he decided he wanted to sit out on the deck for a bit in the cool night air before going back to bed.  So, he padded outside, buck naked, with his trusty miniture Schauzer, Waldo at his side.  He parked his butt on a deck chair, got comfortable and closed his eyes for a minute.

It was a very long minute.

Dad's deck was on the south side of his house.  Five feet away from his deck was the neighbors kitchen window.  The neighb's were a retired couple, but the wife always got up at 5 in the morning to make coffee and breakfast.

Dad said it was the light of the morning sun that woke him up.  Said it took him a bit before he realized where he was...and how he was.  He checked his watch.  5:45 a.m.  Immediately, he turned his head toward the kitchen window and yes, the light was on!  Dad saw Waldo lying at his feet, reached down, scooped Waldo up and placed him over his lap, then rose from his deck chair and backed himself into the house.

My father was a modest man.

When asked whether the neighbor's wife saw him, my father said that from that day on, the once warm and friendly couple suddenly become distant and quiet.  Shortly after that, Dad sold the house and moved.

Oh well!

After we shared a few more laughs, the topic got more serious.  Rita believes in many of the same things I do.  We both believe people are placed in our life for a reason, and sometimes things happen for a reason.  Like me, she believes we all have a purpose in life.

Last night, for the first time ever, Rita shared something with me.  She believes she and Dad were brought together for a reason, to unify his family.  Rita is one of the kindest, gentlest people I know; she has a heart the size of Texas, and it's made of solid gold.  In fact, I knew her when I was a high school teenager, when she worked as a clerk at a small grocery store near my home.  Once, on a dare, I walked into the store to purchase a Playgirl magazine.  I was 16 at the time.  Rita waited on me, and with a smile rang up the magazine, bagged it, took my money and sent me on my way.  Who knew back then someday this woman would be my step-Mom.

But, I've gone off topic. 

With all her love and warmth, Rita helped my father reach out to his family and bring them all together.  We were somewhat fragmented when those two met; I didn't know my half-sisters very well, and we never did anything together.  But in less than a year we were all whole again.  Sharing love and laughs, good times and memories...moments I will carry in my heart for the rest of my days.  Rita helped Dad do what he could not do alone.  She always encouraged him to try.  They had ten years together; their time was short, but they filled those years with a lifetime of quality moments.  Sleepovers with the grandkids outside in a tent, Sunday nights I spent watching America's Funniest Home Videos with them, birthday parties, Christmas parties, Easter egg hunts, bar-be-ques, table tennis, Halloween, camping, snow mobiling...I have over 20 VHS tapes filled with the memories Dad and Rita created together.

It takes a strong woman to hold the hand of the man she loves and at the same time say good-bye as he slowly slips away.  Rita stood across the bed from me the day we said good-bye to Dad and many times that morning I found myself looking to her for strength.  It was in her eyes, her simple understanding smile, her touch, and her words.  In the darkness of that day, Rita was a guiding light.

Last night I asked her how she did it.  She confessed it wasn't easy, but deep down inside she knew she had to be strong and let go.  She knew his purpose in this life had been served.  Before he died, he was supposed to bring everyone back together, all of us, including my half-brother, whom I had never formally met.  When chemo and radiation treatments no longer worked, we knew it was only a matter of time before Dad was gone.  Rita picked up the phone and called my brother to let him know.  My brother and his family showed up at the house the next weekend.  It had been 25 years since my father and brother had last seen each other.  That was late October 1997, one month later Dad was gone. 

Two months later, after enduring a month of nagging from me and my sisters, my brother went to his doctor and was diagnosed with prostate cancer, the same cancer our father died from.  But luck was on our side, as the cancer was caught in time, before it spread through his body, like it had with our father.  That was seven years ago and my brother is alive and well today.  The cancer is in complete remission.

Sometimes nagging is a good thing.

The ripple effect of that simple telephone call Rita made so long ago can still be felt...all these years later. One telephone call changed everything...for my brother, my sister-in-law, my nieces, my Dad, my self, and my sisters.  That telephone call became a life line.

Wednesday, July 6, 2005

Yet, At the Same Time...

Something just occurred to me about my last entry.  It seems I have a bit of a conflict.  According to the Chinese zodiac, I was born in the year of the Rooster, so that makes me a chicken.  But I don't want to be a chicken, I am a duck.  Well, you know what they say.  If it looks like a duck, talks like a duck, acts like a duck and walks like a duck, it is a duck.

That's my story and I'm sticking to it.

I am a duck.

Oh and speaking of the Chinese zodiac, did you know 2005 is the year of the Rooster?  I just realized that too.

We gotta do something about these damn chickens!

Oh, looky what I found!

 Said the duck to the chicken!  Perfect!  :)
Blinky from the Tag Lounge

Tuesday, July 5, 2005

Chicken or Duck?

Growing up, I remember my Mom always saying there are two kinds of people.  The two kinds varied and changed, depending on the day, the weather, her day, and her weather.  "Dona," she'd say, "there are two kinds of people..."  Good and bad.  Nice and mean.  Honest and thief.  People you trust, people you never trust.  Lovers and heart-breakers.  Friends and enemies.  I could go on and on, but the first two sums it all up.  Good and bad.  I heard this from her a lot, because I have this inate internal thing about me that believes people are basically good; consequently, my good nature always got me a fast ticket to disappointment city, first stop heart break hotel, right there on lonely street.

So, what's that to do with my title, chicken or duck?  Everything.

See, (just so you know, this is going to be one of those 'reflecting back to my college days' entries...because a lot happened to me in college and I'm going to tell you about it) one day in my Human Resource Management class, the prof started out the lecture with a question.

As he leaned on the lecturn, and with a straight face, he said, "Chicken or duck.  Which are you?"

Given the demographics of this particular college campus, his statement and query were followed by blank stares, giggles, and a few contemplative looks (guess which one I was).  Pausing just long enough for the students to absorb exactly what he said, he then explained.  There are two kinds of people.  Oh boy, I've heard this one before, but Mom never used fowl to prove her point.

This should be interesting.

Leadership and teamwork was the subject of the lecture on that day.  He had my rapt attention.  I wanted to know where he was going with this.  He didn't disappoint me.

Ever look up in the sky and see ducks flying overhead?  What do you see?  A flying V, right?  Now, if you watch them long enough, you would see thatafter a time, the lead duck will drop back to either end and another duck will fly up and take the place of the leader.  Sometime later, that duck will drop back and another will move up to take its place.  Why do they do this?  Simple physics.  Being in the lead takes the most energy.  While at the front of the V the lead duck is breaking trail for its flock-mates, much like a front-running bicycle racer allows teammates to decrease wind resistance by drafting directly behind.  When the lead duck gets tired, it gives a signal and another takes its place at the tip of the V.  They work together to accomplish a goal, whether flying south for the winter, or north for the summer.  By sharing the duties of leadership during flight, the flock covers more miles in a day than if one duck remained the leader throughout the duration of the journey, in which case the flock would have to ground itself to allow the leader to rest, thereby losing valuable flight time.

Then there are chickens.  Ever watch a bunch of chickens?  Do you know what chickens do?  They peck.  Peck, peck, peck.  They peck  at the ground, they peck at their food.  They peck at each other.  If one chicken is weakened, by sickness or injury, the rest of the chickens will gang up on the weak chicken and peck it.  These chickens will continue to peck at their weakened pen mate, never stopping, until it finally dies.  Then the remaining chickens go back to pecking at the ground, or their food.  That's what chickens do. 

Quite a contrast, isn't it?  Survival of the fittest?  Natural selection?  Maybe.

After delivering this comparison to the class, the prof paused once again, to allow the daily lesson to sink into the room full of open minds.  To me, his lecture made complete and total sense.  It really put things into perspective.  Immediately I related the imparting of his wisdom to my own life experiences.  It was easy to do.  I've met a lot chickens in my life, but I've met a lot more ducks.  And even though the ducks outnumber the chickens, those pecking chickens always leave a scar...a memory mark.  Something to remind me.

I work with an individual who is a chicken, no doubt about it.  This person can spot a weakness a mile away, then hone in on it, and splay it wide open for all to see.  This person points, and struts, and postures, always calling attention to the weakness in other people, for reasons I can not even begin to fathom.  I've seen it many times.  I've been the target many times as well.  

I've read all the proactive literature out there, and I fully believe in Covey's 7 Habits.  I've applied them in my dealings with this person, with some success; at first it will smooth things out between us but sooner or later something goes wrong and I'm back to where I started.  It goes round and round.  It gets old, really, really fast.  And I'm getting worn down and worn out.  I don't have time for this folly, nor do I have the inclination to deal with it any more.  So I spoke to my boss about it this morning, as I have done several times before.  Stress is not conducive to productivity, and unfortunately it seems everyone at work is stressed out.  Everyone.  For many reasons, but basically wars cost money, so agencies are cutting their program budgets.  On Friday we lost a contract that pays 16% of my salary and benefits.  We just learned another major program may be cut as well.  There goes another 13%.  I don't have time to deal with a chicken right now because I have to focus all my energy on following the leader so I can be there when she gets tired and needs to rest.  I am a duck.  And that's what ducks do, we work together to solve problems and achieve results.

Is it possible for a chicken to become a duck?  Maybe.  I sure hope so because this world needs more ducks and less chickens.

Chicken or duck.  Which are you?


I opened my 'For Giving Souls' Calendar today, and this was the message for today.  How appropriate...
~~Put on your girly pants and hold on to your britches...this too shall pass, and you'll be better on the other side for it.~~

Sunday, July 3, 2005

Winchester Days...and Nights

Situated in the mountains, right next to a beautiful lake not too far from my home is the small town of Winchester, so named after the world famous rifle (yep, it's still the Wild, Wild West).  Total population 308; except during the first weekend in July when the population swells with tourists and local citizens from nearby towns who gather to join in the annual celebration of Winchester Days.  Travelers fill up the campground at Winchester Lake State Park, as well as the locally owned mom & pop RV parks, and motels.  The town is a buzz with parades, music, dancing, and people.

Here's an interesting fact about Winchester: there are more men (age 16 and over) than women

Throughout all the years I've lived here I've been to Winchester many times, but never for the fireworks show; armed with my camera, last night I decided to venture up to the lake.  The American spirit is alive and well in this town.  Within minutes of arriving, I was welcomed by the sight of a large American flag hanging in a pasture between two pine trees.  It was one of those moments...I'm driving along, see the flag (can't miss it), think to myself, Oh that's cool and keep driving.  Then Hey, wait a minute! hit the brakes (thankfully no one is behind me) turn around, drive back, park, grab camera and take photos.  See, living here, sights like this are really common place, I see them all the time.  Sometimes I forget that everyday stuff to me, can be interesting stuff to you.  

Very cool, no?  That's Winchester Lake in the background between the trees.

It didn't take long to find a place to park and watch the show, after I paid the Park's $4 day use fee.  Looking back now, I should have just parked along the road and thumbed my nose at the Park Ranger's.  Ah well.  Showtime was 45 minutes away so I walked about searching for just the right place.  I found it.

Well, I had it all to myself for all of five minutes...then about 25 energetic, excited kids showed up and took over the tiny dock.  Sigh.  I moved.  Call me crazy but I suspect that tiny dock isn't designed to handle all that weight, and frankly I really didn't want to find out.  Even though one of the boys was bound and determined to test that theory.  Two minutes of listening to some woman screaming at him and the others, I picked up my chair and walked back to my car.  Fine, I can see just as well from here.

Once the sun dropped down, so did the temperature.  On my chair I sat, warmed by the heat of my Jeep's engine.  Then something in the air caught my eye.  Opps.  I forgot about the bats.  Well, I could get up and sit inside the Jeep, or just stay put and hope there aren't any bugs hovering near me.  I opted to stay, with both eyes intently watching the sky overhead.  For the most part, the bats kept a respectful distance, but there were a couple of times I had to sink down into my chair.  Hey watch it!

Then came the skunks.

A whole family of them.  I never saw them, but I sure smelled them.  Phewwww.  I may never wear these clothes again.

You'll be glad to know I stood my ground.  Ah, the great outdoors.  A least there weren't any mosquitoes.


:::scratch::: :::scratch:::: :::scratch:::

And finally, what we were all waiting for.  I had my camera set on Night Scene, so the photos will be a bit grainy.  I'll let the photos take it from here. 


Halfway through I decided to sit inside the Jeep, where it was warm, and without the bugs.  Well, the live ones anyways; I did take some pics from inside my Jeep, through the bug splattered windshield.  In case you were wondering what those fuzzy thingys in those two pics are.  The bugs were thick on the drive up.  Note to self: During summer months it is advisable to carry windshield cleaner in vehicle, especially if one is going to be taking pictures from inside.

Had I kept my place on the dock, I would have unobstructed views...possibly from the water...with or without my camera.  But, truth be told, I think the outline in the trees adds something extra to the display (no comment about the bug splatter tho).

UPDATE:  Almost forgot a somewhat worthy mention.  Traveling to and from Winchester requires taking a 'back road.'  On the drive back home, a couple of miles outside the city I got pulled over by a county mounty for speeding (said he clocked me at 54 mph in a 45 mph zone).  But, he let me off with just a warning.  :D  It does pay to be nice and smile.  Good thing, because I did not want a speeding ticket!!!! 

Saturday, July 2, 2005

A Very Happy Ending in Idaho

They found her, alive!

Today, a handful of my fellow Idahoan's made me proud.  From the minute I turned on the tv this morning, the wonderful news about Shasta Groene has flooded the networks, both locally and nationally.

Thank heavens the people who happened to be in that particular restaurant at that particular moment in time had the wherewithall to act on their suspicions and make the 911 call that changed this little girl's life.  This story could easily have taken a much horrible turn for the worse, and perhaps on many levels it isn't a totally happy ending.  After all, Shasta has already suffered a huge loss.  I pray she pulls through this horrific ordeal; I hope the love from her family and the community will provide her with a quick and healthy recovery to take away whatever memories she will have from these past six weeks.  May this little girl have the strength to face the days, and nights, that lie ahead for her...and to stand tall as a witness against her abductor.

And, Amber Deahn, you are a true and genuine hero!  You are one awesome person...quick thinker that you are, remembering Shasta's face and realizing who it was you were looking at.

Sometimes, minding your own business is a good thing.  Then there are those times where people should, and must, cross that line in order to save an innocent life.

Book Worm...Hole

I have too many books!  At least right now I feel like I do.  I never have enough shelf space for them, I've donated I don't know how many to the local library, and yet I can't ever find the right place to keep all of them.  And now I'm torn.  Should I keep this one, and not that one?  Easy decision, you'd think.  Keep the ones I love.  But I love books, period.  Sure I know there are books I will never part with; signed first editions, my Kahil Gibran collection, anything by Diana Gabaldon and Kim Barnes, those are my keepers.  And I've even got paperbacks I've had for years, such as Jennie: the life of Lady Randolph Churchill and Jennie Volume II by Ralph G. Martin, which I've had in my possession since 1971 (they both look it too).  Most people throw paperbacks away after a time, as they don't have a long shelf life.  But all too often I've tossed a worn out, falling apart, losing pages paperback in the trash, only to find it is out of print and replacing it is out of the question.  That's frustrating...

What's a girl to do?



Oh, and for those of you wondering, the Wicked Tinkers are not a Heavy Metal band.  On the contrary, they are a Scottish Bagpipe and Drum band complete with kilts.  ;)  Click here for a sample.

Friday, July 1, 2005

Well, well, well...what have we here?

You know... sometimes you bring something up, mention that it's been lost forever for whatever reason, and then a short time find it?  Last week in my Monday Photo Shoot entry I mentioned a gift from my sister Chris, that at the time, I swore had been destroyed because I hadn't seen it for so long.  Then of course there's the fact that there was a time when several of my things got destroyed during wild teenage parties conducted at the house while certain adults were out of town.  Anyway....

Guess what I found today?

Yep.  Unbelievable.  Here I was last week going on about how it was destroyed (which it kinda was, the stand on the back is really messed up).  The other night I was thinking about this 'treasured' object of mine, and I recalled last seeing it in the cabinet with all my photo albums.  Today, while going through said cabinet, I picked up a stack of photo envelopes, and there it was.  YEA!!!!  It's really beat up, but bear in mind I've had it since Christmas 1978, I've moved over a dozen times since then, including a move to Sacramento for four years, then back here.  All things considered, it's in pretty good shape.

So Chris, whaddaya think of that, hmmm?  I've still got it!!!!!