Cleaning The Basement On A Sunday Afternoon

As you may know I have a couple boxes of stuff in the basement that I was going to give to my church for their garage sale and a small box of books I was going to give the hospital where my mom had her surgery, but because of Covid they are still down there.

Since I’m not watching football and it’s raining I’m cleaning the basement this afternoon. It’s been bugging me for awhile and it just needs to get done. It’s full of crap and needs to be organized.

stuff in corner of basement

It didn’t take long. Maybe an hour or so. I have four boxes for the thrift store.

I put the 6 beach towels on Marketplace. There are six pillowcases on top of the towels. Why? I have no idea. I don’t even think we have the sheets for them anymore. I kept two. I kept the blanket. The empty boxes were used to put stuff for the thrift store in. I found 50+ hangers that I used for the garage sale in the bottom of one of the bins. I kept 10 and the rest are going to the thrift store.

much better

The four bins on the right are my journals. No, I haven’t read them or dumped them. I don’t know why I hang onto them.

I’m keeping the clear bins. Work gave them to us for free. I used them for garage sale stuff.

I’m keeping the small box of books. I found a used book store that will take my books and give me credit for future purchases. I don’t know how much I will get for my books. I really don’t care. I’m helping a local business and I’m happy that I can drop my books off at a place that loves and appreciate books.

A small corner is cleaned out and I feel much better.

The thrift store is going to love me tomorrow and I love the thrift store for being open and taking my stuff.

I have a confession to make. It’s Sunday night and football is on. Yes, I broke. I was at my sister in law’s house today and she had the game on. Yes, I watched a little.

It reminded me that it’s not just football that I love. I love learning about the game and the players from the announcers. I love seeing the fans when they are in the stands and the different stadiums. I love the night games and the pictures of the cities they play in. They are showing some beautiful pics of the Big Easy tonight.

A girl has a right to change her mind doesn’t she?

The Back Story

I know the letter I wrote to P in my last post was kinda rough so let me explain and give you the back story.

P is a nice woman, but the drives me nuts.  She can’t make a decision to save her soul.  Case in point:  if someone is selling Girl Scout cookies she has to call her husband to see what kind she should order.  (Not me.  I order my favorite cookie and hide them so I can eat them when I want to).

She tries to make everyone happy and put everyone’s needs before her own.  You and I know that you can’t make everyone happy so why try.  What it boils down to is that you need to make yourself happy and she doesn’t have a clue on how to put herself first or make herself happy.

I think if she asserted herself her world would fall apart around her and she wouldn’t know what to do on her own.

I just can’t deal with that behavior anymore.  I’ve worked hard to get to where I am.  Especially after menopause kicked in.  I’ve went to counseling and read books and wrote in my journal.  I started my blog.  I try to do one thing a week that scares me.  I’ve change.  I’m a different person.

I don’t drag my feel (well sometimes…).  I don’t blame my problems on other people.  I am hands on.  I am straight forward.  I like to learn new things.  I don’t take no for an answer.

I am a strong, independent woman.  I’m not afraid to speak up for myself.  I need to speak up for myself.  I want to speak up for myself.

I am in control of my life (for the most part).  I know where I want to go and what crap I am going to put up with.  If any.

I want to work with people who lift me up and support me.  That will motivate me to achieve my dreams.  That will call me on my shit and won’t put up with it.  I want positive people around me who love to learn and grow and encourage me to do the same.

Unfortunately these are not qualities she possesses.  I don’t they will ever be qualities she possesses.

I can’t pussy foot around the situation anymore so I try to stay away.  I will only help her if I have to and that time will be limited.  If I have to, I will sit down with my boss and her boss and tell them how I feel.  Not that it will do any good.  Work is work and I get that.  I just need to get it off of my chest.  They need to know how I feel and why.

She drives everyone nuts.  It’s not just me.  They get it.

She drains me because she talks about the same thing day after day, week after week, month after month and year after year.  Nothing changes.  It can’t because she won’t change.

I want to move forward.  I want to change.  I want to grow.

I want to be a better person.

Sometimes in life you have to leave people behind.  I choose to leave J behind.  As mean as that sounds it’s something I have to do.  I can’t have someone bringing me down all of the time.

I have to do what is best for me.  Whether she gets it or not.



I Can’t Help You

Dear P

I can’t help you if you’re not willing to stand up for yourself and your beliefs.  I can’t help you if you are unwilling to change and or think any of the problems you are having partially or maybe all your fault.

I can’t help you if you don’t push back.  If you don’t believe you are a worthy human being.  If you want to make everyone happy or do what works best for everyone.  I can’t help you if you don’t/ won’t/can’t see that you can’t make everyone happy.  You have to make yourself happy first.

I can’t help you if don’t see that you’ve been sitting in the same situation for the past how many years and you don’t do anything to change your behavior or the way you think about things.  I’ve suggested counseling to help you learn other ways of dealing with this problem.  I’ve told you ways of dealing with the situation that I would use, but day after day you keep doing the same thing in the same way.

I can’t help you if you are unwilling to help yourself.  If you are willing to sit in the same pile of shit day after day and stay there.  Same soap box.  Wearing the same rose colored glasses.  Speaking the same messed up words.  Open your eyes.

I can’t help you because I have been down this road and turned off of it a long, long time ago.  The oh feel sorry for me because so and so is making my life a living hell and I can’t do anything about it.  I don’t want to be on that road or even near it.  It is clogged with negativity, fear and hopelessness.  I’m done being a victim.

I can’t help you if I want to keep my sanity.  I want to move in a positive direction in my life and being sympathetic to your story that you repeat to me day after day after day sucks the life out of me.  I can’t deal with it.  I don’t want to deal with it.  Honestly, my ears are sick of hearing it.

I’m done.  I can’t listen to your problems anymore.  I can’t even try to help you anymore.  I don’t want to be in your space anymore.  I’m not even sorry that I can’t help you anymore.

I just can’t help you.



I Suck At Drawing

I can’t draw.

I’m not exaggerating.  I’m not one of those people who they can’t draw, but draw these beautiful pictures.  Not even close.  I suck.  I am being totally honest with you.  And myself.

I suck.

I tried to draw a simple umbrella from a picture I found on the internet.  Not happening.  It sucked.  My picture looked more like a fig leaf than a umbrella.

Drawing has always been something I suck at.  I am a writer not an artist.

Then why am I trying to draw?

Visions of drawings for a Menopause calendar keep dancing around in my head.  I have a vision in my head of what the top picture of a couple of the months to be and I would love to put them on paper.  The problem is is that I can’t draw.  Even my stick figures look sick.

I bought a sketch book to practice drawing in last night.  That’s when I drew the fig leaf whoops –umbrella.   One of the pictures I would like to sketch has a umbrella in it.

It’s frustrating to keep trying because I know what I want it to look like in my head, but it trying to get it on paper is something else.   Since I’m trying to do things that push me out of my comfort zone, I’m going to keep trying.  Even if I can get the basics on paper it would be a start.

I’m going shopping with my mom, sister and niece on Saturday.  Maybe I’ll stop in the bookstore and see what books they have on drawing.  I definitely need to learn the basics.

I tried drawing a simple porch attached to a house and a box that said “it” on it sitting on the porch.  I drew the box.  It looked alright, but I couldn’t get the lines correct with the house and porch.

I don’t know why I’m sharing this.

I keep hearing my dad’s voice.  Keep trying.  Practice makes perfect.

Not in this case, Dad, but I will keep trying.











Why Do I Feel Guilty?

We have been on 9 hours voluntary overtime for the last four days at work.

Guess what?  I haven’t worked an hour.  I could of but I didn’t.

You know why? I don’t want to.  I don’t have to.   I’m not going to.  I’m taking advantage of it because I don’t know how long it’s going to last.

Do you know what the sad thing is?  I feel guilty not working it.

Why?  We just bought a house and we need things — like a new furnace and a/c.  Other people are working it so I feel I should to.  It’s the right thing to do.  Blah.  Blah.  Blah.

It’s been very hard not to stay, but I haven’t.  There’s work so I could find something to do for that last hour.

It’s been extremely hard to give that extra hour to myself.  I told myself I don’t have to work that extra hour if I write for an hour.  Each day I’ve been writing an hour or more.  Don’t I deserve an extra hour in my day to do what I want with?  Instead of helping my company make money and achieve their goals.  What about my goals?

But I feel guilty.  A coworker’s mom had surgery today.  I should go in and help out.  Right?  I’m a team player.

The thing is is that I need to ask myself when am I going to help myself?  When am I going to dedicate my time to my writing like I do my job?  When am I going to help Team Me?  If I’m going to be a writer than I need to write.  Every.  Day.  Not just when I don’t have to work.

I need the hour to myself.  So what if I don’t have any overtime on one check (you know these 8 hour days aren’t going to last forever).  It’s not going to break me.

I need to stop giving my time and dedication to my employer.  Instead I need to give it to myself.  Even if it means giving up five hours of overtime a week.

I need to stop feeling guilty and be proud that I’m giving myself the time to do something I love and that I’m passionate about.

Stepping out and exploring myself and what I am capable of is scary.   Maybe that’s why I feel guilty not working the overtime.  My focus is on myself instead of the company I work for.  They frown upon that.

I can feel the scale tipping more toward me.  Maybe I’m beginning to see that there are other options out there and maybe it’s time I started exploring them.

My talent and I are definitely worth that hour.




A Different Way Home

For the last four weeks the road I usually take home has been closed.  Now I only have four roads I have to drive on to get home.  The road that is closed is the 3rd I have to take on my journey home.  It is a main road so that means to get to the road I live on I have to take a back road.

I love the road that is closed.  I love the road because I love to drive by and see my cows (no, they really aren’t my cows…but you know what I mean) in the pasture.  It calms me for some reason.  At night I can barely see them.  I mostly see the white next to the black and I know they are out there.  I love that.  (Yes, this will be a future post)

I’m not a big fan of driving down country roads that I don’t know at night.  During the day it’s not a problem, but at night it’s creepy.  I imagine bad things happening.  A car passing me, suddenly stops blocking my way.  I try to back up and get away, but the guy wearing a mask drags me and throws me in his car.  A dear hits my truck and I have to call 911 and I don’t know where the hell I am at.  A person walks out of the cornfield and stands in the middle of the road and won’t move.

Yesterday I took a different way to work.  Instead of turning at the country road I’ve been turning at I drove to the next one and stopped at the stop sign and than took a left.  That’s when I noticed it was a four way stop.  I thought I should take this road home today.

On my way home two weeks ago I missed a turn because there was a car behind me and I was nervous.   I turned at the next cross road.  I was scared.  I had no idea where I was.  I did have a full tank of gas.  I could have turned around and went back, but I decided to keep driving and luckily when I hit the next cross road I knew the markers and I knew where I was.

It’s scary out there on the back roads in farm country.  It’s pitch black.  Pitch.  Black. The only light is the occasional street light on someone’s property or a lights over a garage door.  The roads don’t end for blocks and blocks.  Most of the houses/farms aren’t close to the road so I’m really all by myself.  Me and the open farm fields that I can barely see.

All day yesterday I was thinking about taking that road home.  It was the first time I was on the road, but how hard could it be to find my way in the dark?  All I have to do is drive straight a couple of miles until I get to the stop sign and take a right.

Well, I missed the turn for the road.  Yeah right.  If I am being honest with myself I have to admit I chickened out.  It happens sometimes.

Tonight I didn’t chicken out.  I didn’t miss the turn and I made it to the stop sign.  I drove 44 mph in a 55 mph zone, but there wasn’t anyone behind me so it wasn’t a big deal.  I was scared, but I made myself do it.   (just so you know I’m not driving around in a piece of junk that might break down at any minute.  I drive a 2016 Ford Escape that is very reliable).

I believe that once in a while we need to do what scares us.  We need to get ourselves out of our comfort zone.  We need to get our blood pumping.  Squish our fears.  And do whatever scares us.

I’m doing another thing that scares right now.  Writing this post.  I don’t feel I’m very good at explaining things of this nature so I’m fussing over my word choices, sentence structure and God knows what else.  I’m second guessing myself while my inner critic is saying to “Why are you trying to write this post?  No one will understand it anyway.”

Guess what?  I wrote it anyway.  If no one understands what I am saying that’s ok.  I tried.  People will give me suggestions on how to improve that side of my writing and I will chalk it up as a learning experience.

I think sometimes we stay in our comfort zone because we are afraid of doing something wrong or of failing.  We forget that that is how we learn.  By letting ourselves wander out of our comfort zone we get stronger, smarter and one step closer to whatever it is we are wandering to.

Today I’m wandering to being a better writer and helping people through my writing.

What are you wandering to?

What country road are you going to drive down today to get one step closer to your dreams?

Good luck whatever it is.

If I Am Being Honest With Myself

The place I work is celebrating 50 years in business this year. This past weekend we had an awards banquet at a very prestigious place with a very prestigious speaker.

I work a dressy tank top (Vera Wang), jeans shorts and flip flops. I did do my hair and wore two gold bracelets and a ring,

For the last two weeks at work women have talking about their dresses, having fashion shows and looking up hairstyles and shoes on the internet during working hours.  The amount of work time spent on this was ridiculous.

I thought about dressing up, but why? Dressing up just isn’t my thing.  I never did like primping, doing my hair or putting makeup on.  I just not me.  I don’t like to dress up. I don’t feel comfortable dressed up.  I didn’t want to dress up.  I couldn’t see dressing up for four hours.

I honestly didn’t have anything to wear.  I don’t dress up during the holidays.  Or any holiday.  I think the last time I dressed up was at my mother in laws funeral.  I can’t wear cool weather clothersin 85 degree weather.

I am a jeans and t shirt kind of girl.

I actually did try a couple of outfits on at Kohl’s, but none of them fit.  I ran into a an old friend I used to work with 20 years ago and ended up talking to her for 15 minutes. My time for trying more stuff on turned into grabbing three dressy tank tops off the rack and trying them on when I got home.

If I am trying to let go of stuff , why would i buy clothes that will hang in my closet that I will probably never wear again?  If I’m honest with myself that would be stupid.  A waste on money and closet space.  My husband and I are homebodies especially now that we bought the house. We only place we go is to menards and home depot.  We don’t dress up and go out.  We never have.

I could have went shopping the next morning, but I decided on the dressy tank top because I know I will wear it again.  The first top I picked out was the one that looked the best and fit good.  The other two tops have been returned to Kohl’s.

I was worried on the way to the banquet that I made the wrong decision.  Maybe I should have spent more time and actually bought a nice outfit.  When I walked into the building I saw a few other people that weren’t that dressed up and I knew I had made the best decision for me.  I didn’t waste money on buying something I wasn’t going to wear again.  I didn’t waste that much time trying stuff on.  Instead I spent time catching up with old friend I  rarely see because she lives in Canada.  And I don’t have to store it.

I had a great time that night.  I was me.  Even though I wasn’t wearing a dress I was comfortable with what I was wearing.  I smiled.  Laughed.  Danced around.  I was confident and it shined through.

Sometimes you have to listen to your gut and do what feels right instead of doing what everyone else is doing.

I mailed out the first 50 pages of my novel and a two page outline Wednesday afternoon.


I don’t mean to toot my own horn but I’m going to do it anyway.  I’m extremely proud of myself.  I worked my butt off to get it to the Post Office on Wednesday.  I had some problems and wanted to give up several times.  I wanted to give up because I didn’t know why I was putting so much effort into something I probably I’m not going to even get close to winning.  There were other things I could be doing….like sleeping.  I didn’t know why, but I kept typing.  Then I got a comment from ohnaturalgirl125 on my blog that said I inspire her.  That made my day and inspired me to keep going whether or not I was going to win.

Even though I didn’t want to I kept typing.  I kept thinking of how I didn’t finish NaNoWriMo.    I started strong, but things came up and I didn’t finish.  It bothers me that I didn’t finish.   I didn’t want to admit to people that I didn’t finish this goal either.

I wanted to work on it last weekend, but I hurt pulled my bicep muscle while I was sleeping (don’t ask).  I was out of commission for most of the weekend.  I started typing on Sunday after I took three Ibuprofens.  I continued typing my 50 pages on Sunday night.   I edited my outline on paper at work and came home and edited my outline on my computer.  Monday night I stayed up until 2 am and woke up at 9 am and started typing.  Tuesday night I started typing the last 17 pages I needed and on Tuesday night I finished at 3 am.  On Wednesday I woke up at 8 am and printed the outline, the 50 pages and typed and printed my cover letter and got it ready to mail.  I mailed it at 12:23 it was at the post office.


I haven’t posted anything this last week because I’ve been focused on my first 50 pages and outline.

My next goal is to rewrite the whole novel one chapter at a time.  Hopefully, I will be able start this in the middle of April at the campground.

After I finish moving…..



Figuring Out My Inner Critic

This is what my inner critic was babbling in my ear this morning


Who do you think you are trying to write a novel?

That sentence is terrible.

I don’t know why you are editing these fifty pages.  You’re manuscript isn’t going to win anyway.

You must think you are better than everyone else.

I don’t know why you are even trying.


It’s snowing outside.  We got about five inches of snow overnight.    I cancelled my annual exam appointment this morning so I could stay home and edit my manuscript while laying in bed in my jammies.  I needed a little TLC and downtime.

As I started editing my inner critic jumped in full force babbling all the crap from above and all my insecurities came to the surface.  I felt my manuscript was kinda of blah.  My sentence structure wasn’t the greatest.  I didn’t have the warm, fuzzy feeling that I normally do when I edit.  I felt like there was a dark rain cloud hanging over manuscript.

Usually my inner critic isn’t this loud or critical or if it is I ignore it, but not this morning.  It was hard to edit this morning, but I kept pushing through.  I edited the pages that I wanted to, but I’m not feeling confident about it.

I know the phrases Who do you think you are trying to write a novel and You must think you are better than everyone else are from my childhood.  I’ve wanted to write since I was little.  I’ve always had lofty dreams.  My two younger brothers were always labeled “Learning Disabled” in school and my mom still uses this reference once in a great while in reference to something.  Maybe this is why I haven’t finished my novel because who am I to go after my dreams when they are learning disabled?  It’s just this old shit from my childhood that I need to sift through and figure out.  My brother’s are far from learning disabled.  My angry brother built a truck from the frame up and I’m sure my other brother could do the same.  So why I am holding myself back?  What if I would publish my romance novel?  Would it make me better than them?  No.  Would it make me better than anyone?  No.

I love it (not really) when this crap from the past comes up and I have to deal with it.  Especially when I thought I already dealt with it.  I know I have dealt with parts of it, but not all of it.  This is something I’m definitely going to have to write about in my journal.  I’m grateful for my inner critic today for showing me another brick that can be taken down from my wall of armor.

What does your inner critic say to you?



QP Shaquem Griffin What An Inspiration

Last night I was channel surfing and came across the NFL Combine.  The NFL Combine is a place where invited college football players perform physical and mental tests in front of NFL coaches, general managers and scouts.

Shaquem Griffin was one of the invited college linebackers.  He played college ball for UCF.  He ran the 40 yard dash in 4:38.  Holy crap!  The fastest linebacker at The Combine since 2003.  He benched 20 reps of 220 pounds.  Wow!

What’s so impressive about this player is that he doesn’t have a hand.  It was amputated when he was 4.  He benched 20 reps with a special prosthetic attached to his left arm.

He played football in college and won awards and now he wants to play in the NFL.  His twin, Shaquill, plays for the Seattle Seahawks.

What I love about him is that he doesn’t let his handicap determine what he can and can’t do.  He decides.  He pushes through.  He preservers.  He knows what he wants and isn’t afraid to go after it.

Watching Shaquem last night motivated me.  If he plays football with one hand then there is no reason I can’t achieve my dreams.   I need to push through.  I need to preserver.  No matter what obstacles are in my way.   I need to be fearless when it comes to my dream of getting my writing published.

I’m going to find a picture of him bench pressing and hang it in my office for the days I’m feeling down and don’t have the confidence I need to achieve my dreams.

Check out his story.  I bet you’ll be motivated, too.