Random Thoughts

1.) Do you sleep with your closet doors open or closed?  Open, you can see the monsters that way.

2.) Do you take shampoo and conditioner bottles from hotels?  Well, of course!

3.) Do you sleep with your sheets tucked in or out? Oh, MY goodness!  Sheets MUST be tucked in to keep out the monsters who could come out of the closet at any moment!  Everyone knows that a nice cotton sheet will repel all unwanted guests.  And, really?!? UN-tucked sheets are just wrong on way too many levels to delve into here.

4.) Have you ever stolen a street sign? Umm, hmmm.  Well, that depends on your definition of “stolen”.

5.) Do you cut out coupons and then never use them? I am the Coupon Queen.  There are simply things you should NEVER pay for, like toothpaste and shampoo.

6.) Would you rather be attacked by a big bear or a swarm of bees? I am allergic to bees, so I’ll be taking my chances with the bear.

7.)Do you always smile for pictures?  Yes

8.) Do you ever count your steps when you walk?  Uh, No.  I am not that OCD.

9.) Have you ever peed in the woods?  Yes, in a national park, on a hike.

10.) Do you still watch cartoons?  Do The Simpson’s count?

11.) Where would you bury hidden treasure if you had some? Well, if I told you, it wouldn’t be a secret anymore!

12.) What do you drink with dinner?  Depends- Lemonade, beer, wine, Kool-Aid.

13.) What do you dip a chicken nugget in?  Mustard or Honey or that amazing Polynesian Sauce from Chick-Fil-A!

14.) What movies could you watch over and over and still love?  The Women, To Kill A Mockingbird, Independence Day, My Fair Lady, The Princess Bride, The Notebook, Under the Tuscan Sun, …

15.) Were you ever a girl scout?  Yes

16.) Would you ever strip or pose nude in a magazine?   Not in a million years!

17.) Can you change the oil on your car?  Yep!

18.) Have you ever gotten a speeding ticket?  Nope.  I can cry on cue and by quite hysterically “Sorry officer”.

19.) Afraid of heights?  Not really.

20.) Do you sing in the car?  All. The. Time.

21.) Is Christmas stressful?  Of Course!

22.) Occupations you wanted to be when you were a kid.  A Nurse (thank God I got over that!), A Teacher, A photographer

23.) Do you believe in ghosts?  No

24.) The first concert you ever went to.   Sandi Patty- Don’t judge.

25.) Walmart, Target, or Kmart?  Target!

26.) Nike or Adidas?  Nikes

27.) Can you curl your tongue?  Nope

28.) Have you ever cried because you were so happy?   Yes- a lot of times!

29.) The last concert you saw?   Not sure.

30.) Can you swim well?   Not particularly

31.) Can you knit of crochet?  I’m not that old yet!

32.) Are you a dog person or a cat person?  Yes.  Mostly cat because they are independent and self-cleaning.

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Who Am I?

I Am

I am Creative and strong
I wonder who I’m going to be when I grow up
I hear the soft waves hitting the beaches at Cape Cod
I see the bridge to everywhere
I want to accomplish my goals
I am creative and strong

I pretend that I am already free to be who I am
I feel comforted by love and belief, with strong attachments
I touch the edge of the universe
I worry that I may die too young
I cry when I think of what could have been
I am Creative and strong

I understand that I cannot change the past, but I can change tomorrow
I say I can be anything I want to be and do all I imagine being possible
I dream of being a success and making an impact on the world
I try to look for and savor small pleasures
I hope my children become strong, ethical, kind and generous
I am creative and strong

This is a post inspired by MamaKat’s Writer’s Workshop, which is pretty much my main source of inspiration at the moment.  If you’ve hit a dry spell, or, like me, are simply overwhelmed with life in general at the moment, check out her blog!

Organization Junkie

My Name is “Just Me”, and I am an Organization Junkie. 

My Favorite Planner

It’s true. 

I am drawn to all manner of binders, files, cabinets and containers.  I LOVE calendars and journals.  I’m not sure this really qualifies as a vice, per se.  It’s not immoral or unethical, but a secondary definition of “vice”  is “weakness” and, well, let’s just say keeping me away from organizational products would be an exercise in futility.I could run an office supply store. 

Makes Bill Paying Bearable

Who doesn’t need a binder for their bills?  Who could live without that cute dry erase board, or the drawer organizer?  Who would even attempt to maintain a kitchen without drawer dividers?  You see what I mean?  Pencils and Pens?  NOOOO problem!  There’s a container for that too!  When I lived in Texas, there was a retail chain called The Container Store- be still my soul!  You could wander for hours coveting anything from closet organizers to plastic totes to journals, calendars, file folders, etc.  There was no end to the creative genius of some of the products found there.  Color coordinated tabs, dividers, stickers, sticky notes, paperclips, binderclips, . . . .You see what I mean-totally addicted!I guess organizing the “stuff” in my life is easier and way more controllable than organizing the circumstances of  my life, still, not a bad vice to possess.  That’s my story, and I’m sticking to it!

My Love Affair With Film

My obsession with photography began in college when I enrolled in a photography class as my token “art” credit.  I was no good at drawing and no one trusted me with any other medium- for very good reasons- and, so, by default, Photography it was.

My professor spoke with SUCH a New Jersey accent that hearing and understanding became as much a part of the course as taking and developing the pictures.  We mixed chemicals, learned about f-stops and aperatures and different types of paper.  We completed our assignments, turned in our chemicals and collected our grades.  And that was that. 

Or so I thought. 

Pretty soon, I found myself investing in  my own 35mm (I had borrowed one for the class) and scoping out local photography stores for the coveted Agfa film.  I still LOVE Agfa when I use film.  Film, ah, film, remember those rolls?  Black and White, or Color, ah, yes.  Those were the days were they not?  While I frequently pine for the days of film, I really prefer the immediacy of digital.  The SD card does have its advantages.

I love photography because with it, I can be here:

Or Here:                                                       

  Or Even Here:

I can be looking at these:

Or any of these, no matter what season it is:

 

And I can recall all of my thoughts and emotions surrounding these mementos:

 

 

 

I can escape.  I can be in a happy place from the near or distant past if I have captured the moment in film.  I can rejuvenate and evaluate where I am and where I want to be.  I can appreciate the beauty of each moment and anticipate more to come.  And, that, is how I came to love photography.  A picture, to me, is worth so much more than a mere thousand words.  It is a million feelings.  It’s another of those things that makes me, “Just Me”.  I can look at my photos and know so much about me and who I am as well as who I will be in the years ahead.

22 Things I HAVE done

Okay, so, what to share??

At 41, I HAVE:

1.  Canned my own vegetables and jelly

2.  Visited 39 states

3.  Been in 15 stage productions

4.  Completed two Masters degrees

5.  Been to Pike’s Peak

6.  Been swimming in the Atlantic and Pacific

7.  Driven coast to coast

8.  Eaten a McLobster Sandwich-yep, you read it right-McDonald’s special in Maine

9.  Attended a professional football game and sat in a suite

10.  Drunk a bottle of wine- alone- by myself

11.  Survived cancer

12.  Buried a child

13.  Tiled my own bathroom and backsplash

14.  Sat with a friend at the trial of her son’s murderer

15.  Had the lead in a play

16.  Crawled in my dorm room window because it was after curfew

17.  Won an award for some photos I took

18.  Learned what love is- and what it is NOT

19.  Paid $3,000 less than the asking price for a car I bought

20.  Met my Soul Mate

21.  Watched puppies being born

22.  Hand fed a baby giraffe

I’m Back!

It has been a long time-too long!  I have been away dealing with life in general and doing some editing which requires all of my mental capacity focused on really mundane, ummm, boring, um, no, intense and interesting research done by cognitive psychologists who really ARE the geeks of the geeks.  So, alas, I’m done for the moment and now, my creative energy needs a place to “just be”.  So, I am picking up with Mama Kat’s Writer’s Workshop and her challenge du jour: 

22 Things I Have Never Done

I am 40+ years old and I have NEVER:

1.   Ridden on a motor cycle

2.  Been skinny-dipping

3.  Eaten octopus

4.  Been to Europe

5.  Smoked a cigarette

6.  Flunked a class

7.  Been to anything remotely NASCAR (nor do I intend to in the next 40+       years)

8.  Had a Bloody Mary

9.  Been Skydiving

10.  Put eye drops in my eye without a major anxiety episode 🙂

11.  Used a bow and arrow

12.  Worn a bikini in public

13.  Been on water skis

14.  Eaten oysters on the half-shell

15.  Taken Calculus

16.  Made a late mortgage payment

17.  Visited Washington state

18.  Made a purchase at Bass Pro Shops

19.  Ridden a roller coaster that turns upside down

20.  Dyed my hair

21.  Owned a guinea pig or anything else that could be mistaken for a rodent!

22.  Gambled

School Supply Addicts Anonymous

I am Just Me, and I am a school supply addict.  There!  It’s out in the open!   

I just love this time of year!!!!  It’s like New Years, only warmer and without the football.  Well, sort of without football.  It’s the beginning of the season.   At any rate, it’s a new start.  It looks like this:

You’re wandering the aisles at your local Target, when suddenly, it hits you. That smell!  That heavenly, wonderful aroma of fresh crayons and paper and pencils and plastic!  It’s mesmerizing.  You abandon everything on your “To-Do”  list, ignore your hungry, thirsty children, your ringing cell phone and follow your nose until you find it-The School Supply Aisle! 

I love school supplies!  I love office supplies!  I get so excited!!  It’s like all these new opportunities right at your finger tips!

Notebooks are my weakness.  I’m sure it has everything to do with the fact that I like love to write.  I mean, really, when I was in school, notebooks came in a few primary colors and composition books came in that odd black and white pattern.  You know the one I mean.  Blah.  Now, there are all these choices and patterns and colors and wow!!!!!  It’s SO exciting!!! The kids choose the ones they need for school and I always buy several new ones for me.  My kids don’t understand what in the world I’m going to DO with them, and, truth be told, I don’t know either.  I just know I need them. They’re so cute!   They call out to me and I MUST buy.  And, hey!  At fifty cents, or less, I can afford them!  Eventually, I find a use for them.  I have one for “Things I Want to Try”, one for “Topics I want to Write About”, one for “Recipes I want to Try”, one for “Favorite Quotes”, etc.  I just love paper and pencils. 

Paper.  Ahhh, blank sheets of wide ruled notebook paper.  What could possibly be any better than that? Whole, big packs of lined paper just waiting to be filled with new knowledge, new ideas, thoughts, notes to friends, etc. 

 Then, there are the folders and binders and three-ring notebooks with dividersLove, love, love these too!  They are all about organization and I am all about that!  Oh!  And don’t forget planners! Everyone needs a new planner at this time of year!  I KNOW I have one on my phone, and believe me, I use it.  However, I am nothing if not a visual learner, so see, I need one of the paper and pencil variety as well.  My all time favorite is the one produced by Mary Engelbreit, but that’s a post for another day.  (LOVE her too).  I love to see everything all organized and reduced to little inch by inch squares.  It seems so doable that way.  Not at all overwhelming like my life actually is most of the time. 

 I’m also a sucker for erasers.  I know, right?  It’s just that with erasers, there’s room to change your mind and make mistakes and revise your ideas.  Ink is so, . . . permanent.  There is a place for ink, but not in my journals/notebooks.  I need “wiggle” room there.  I especially love the pencil top erasers.  They are quite functional.  While I really like the big pink ones, I can’t seem to keep up with them, so pencil tops work best for me. 

 Brand new markers and so much fun!  It’s like buying a pack of opportunity or potential.  It’s like inertia. All that energy in one place!  Just waiting.   And, they now come in every hue known to man.  When I was in school, there was the 8 pack of primary color Crayola markers and that’s all.  Now there are choices and creativity abounds!  Love it!  Plus, they make that really cool “clacking” sound when they bump into each other in your brand new pencil box.  

 And then, (drum roll please)  . . . there are the CRAYONS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!  I LOVE crayons.  I love the smell.  I love the look.  I love the feel.  To this day, I love to color.  I know, I know.  I will cry when my daughter is no longer interested in coloring.  Right now I have her as my “excuse” to color.  Fortunately, she also shares my passion for organizing and likes to arrange her colors according to hue.  So, all the yellows are together, all the reds and blues, and, well, you get the picture.  I told you I have issues. 

It’s a great Mom/Daughter activity. No?  Works for me.

 Yep, total addict.

(sigh)

 So, now you know.