Aging, Animals, anxiety, Cooking/Baking, Creativity, Dogs, Emotions, family, Food, Friends, Gardening, Holiday, Learning, Life, Love, Nature, Photography, retail, the World, Thinking, Writing

Bits of Joy

This morning dawned and I hurt. Stella was asleep beside me with her head on my pillow. Essie was at my knees snoozing. I really didn’t want to get up but my tailbone wasn’t letting me sleep. And I did need to get up because I had stuff I needed to do before work. Today’s big project is two batches of rice crispy treats. I should’ve done them last night so all I had to do was cut them up but I was too tired and I wanted to spend time with the family. Yesterday was VERY busy at work. I also have the new record for this year (I also believe it is only second in the store’s history) for a total sale of $997 and change. I believe that the high score (if you will) is $1047 and change.

Essie’s birthday was a success. The cupcakes turned out very well and were a big hit at work. I am really glad that I took the time to do everything and share at work. It brightened up everyone’s day. Everyone is beginning to feel the strain. The cupcakes brought many smiles. It was also a coworker’s birthday so that worked out well.

I really want to thank my readers for reaching out. I means a lot that you know only enjoy what I write but that you also take the time to comment. I don’t feel like I am writing in a vacuum. It also helps me to get motivated about my writing projects outside of this. Now I just need to find the time! I am carrying around a piece of paper that has a bunch of notes on it about a short story. I jot things down as they come to me.

The pains from my back and tailbone are getting to me. I’m going to add a few photos and wrap this up. I hope you have great day! Thanks for reading and stay safe!

Aging, Animals, anxiety, Cooking/Baking, Creativity, Dogs, Emotions, family, Food, Holiday, Life, Love, Nature, Photography, retail, the World, Thinking, Writing

Birthday Blues

Today is Essie’s birthday!❤️🐾 My baby girl has turned 11 years old. I am so happy she came to us!

After work last night I made cupcakes. This morning I will frost them with little 11s on top. (If I think about it I will take a picture.) I am taking the surplus cupcakes to work. Everyone is excited. Lol

Once again I am writing this on my phone because the internet is going on and our. It’s like trying to catch a wave… sometimes there is a lot of internet then it peters out to all but gone then it slowly comes back. Sometime is just stays gone. Grrrrr.

My post the next few days might be short. Like this morning. I have a lot to do yet before work so I will share a few photos (if I can get everything to work) and be done. It is our busiest time at work and truthfully I am exhausted. And it has barely begun. We just don’t have the staff and those we do have are being worked long and hard. We are now open until 9pm. So that means even longer shifts.

I hope you all have an amazing day! Thanks for reading and stay safe!

A quick edition! Here are the cupcakes

anxiety, Cooking/Baking, Creativity, Emotions, family, Friends, Gardening, Life, Nature, Photography, retail, Thinking, Writing

Boom! Boiling Oil!

The high point of my catastrophic day yesterday was the boiling oil in my eye. Yep. It was that good. There were good points to be sure (I am sooo grateful that a coworker came in on her day off to help me because I would’ve never gotten it all done in the deli without her) but all in all? A crap day. The meeting lasted til 11:30am. I had to be to work at noon. I still had to run home and get dressed for work. I did manage to get to work on time with a brief kiss from each of my family as I bolted back out the door. Then the real fun started. I was on my own by 2:30pm. And we were busy. It was during this fun episode that I splashed the 375 degree oil in my eye. My help arrived around 6pm or so. By the time I left work last night I could barely walk. By the time bedtime got here I took all the medication I was supposed to (I will sometimes leave out the every eight hour one because it makes me feel wonky). That lasted until 4am. Then I tried a sleeping pill. That didn’t work. So I took another muscle relaxer (aka the wonky pill). I was able to sleep til 9am or so. When I got up I was shuffling around like a little old man. I did manage to get through the medicine fog enough to get my article written and sent in.

And here I am. I need to get one more bill paid and then I might try to get my seeds in the memorial garden. It is another hot day so both AC units will be running. I will try to get some housework done. Not all of it but some. There are things that have been neglected due to my back and need to get done. I may try to get in touch with my parents. I am very grateful that I have two days in a row off. Tomorrow I need to go and get the girls medicine from the vets office. They are closed today unfortunately.

I only broke down in tears three times at work last night. My friend’s death hit me in waves and then I just got so overwhelmed with everything that I had to do at work. I hope to get relaxed today. I have been watering the outdoor plants in the morning before the heat of the day and then again at night but I missed my chance this morning getting up so late. I will use the watering can if any of them get too wilty.

I guess I should wrap this up and get it posted. Thank you for all your support over the past few days. It means a lot. Thanks for reading and stay safe!

Animals, anxiety, Cooking/Baking, Creativity, Emotions, family, Food, Gardening, Life, Nature, Photography, retail, Thinking

Putting On the Big Girl Pants

The day has started out later than I thought it would. I didn’t get any real sleep until the last say three hours. I couldn’t get comfortable and my back was not happy. So I kept turning over like an alligator in a death roll. Or maybe I was making blanket sushi. I don’t know. Every little while I would need to untangle. Or dangle. A foot or a leg because I would get too hot. Anyway I finally looked at the clock around 6:00am or so and told myself to atleast stay in bed until 7am so my day wouldn’t be so long. Well I finally fell asleep solidly. When I next cracked an eye it was going on 9am.

I feel like there is so much that I need to do and so little time I have to do it. I made some progress on my novel but it was stop and start with everything going on here. I would catch an idea and start to work with it then something would happen or need my attention and it would be gone. It was frustrating. I also need to get working in the yard despite my back. The grass is too tall and the flower beds need attention desperately. I also need to get some more seeds planted. Not all of them survived our second winter temperatures a few weeks ago. A lot did surprisingly. Which also means more dirt. My goal is to try to get some of this stuff Saturday after work. Since I get out at 3pm. I work in the deli that morning so I will already be dirty so I might as well keep going. Hopefully the back will be ok. Regardless this stuff needs to get done. I also need to get things done inside like vacuuming and cleaning the multitude of blankets as well as our bedding in the master bedroom.

So after physical therapy tomorrow I will set up my doctor’s appointment for next week to see if I can get her to do the MRI. If not I’m not sure what I am gonna do next. Just wait and see what happens at the appointment and go from there I guess.

I need to start the banana bread soon so it will be done before I leave for work. It can bake while I am in the shower. The bananas won’t last much longer so it is today or they go into the trash. Looks like the sun is trying to come out and stay. We are supposed to have summer temperatures today. Sigh, Mother Nature is all over the place but I don’t blame her. It is way too peopley out anymore. It stresses you out.

I will add a few photos and get this posted. Thanks for reading and stay safe!

Animals, anxiety, Cooking/Baking, Dogs, Emotions, family, Food, Life, Nature, retail, the World, Thinking

Is It Saturday Yet?

And so it begins….yesterday was hell on many levels. We were short staffed (we only had four people between the deli and front line workers), the tourists are starting to arrive (this is a mixed bag as some are very nice then there are the others that are just there to “enjoy the peace and quiet” by making more noise and mess) and the CDC lifted the mask rule. A lot of folks aren’t happy about wearing a mask. I get it. I’m not either. But ever since the announcement yesterday afternoon we have had people coming in without masks proclaiming that they no longer had to wear them. Well guess what? Our bosses said that they still had to be worn in the store so you have to have them on when you are in the store! Oh and by the way you have to have proof that you were vaccinated to not have to wear the mask. You can’t just opt out. And tonight I am closing manager.

The doctor needs to figure out what is going on with my back. Normally I can fake my way through work then just nurse my back at home. Not so yesterday. It hurt going into work and by the time I was done I just wanted to cry. Once home I could barely walk. A shower didn’t help either. This morning is rough going. And it will be another 10+ hour day.

The girls have been very sweet. Right now Stella is laying next to me on the floor. Essie has been in and out this morning (this sun is out and the temperature is rising at a steady rate). She is my little sun bunny. Both of them have been keeping an eye on me.

A bright spot yesterday is that my new lounge chair arrived. I am finally replacing my old one. It is 6 or 7 years old and in need of repairs. The new one is a lovely convertible chair. It can be stretched out so I can lay in the sun or set up as a zero gravity chair. I tried it out last night. It is wonderful! It even has a small removable pillow. I am hoping to spend quality time using it tomorrow.

Sadly I have to leave the house tomorrow. I need to get groceries and the ingredients for Saturday’s dinner. Armadillo eggs. Yep. I thought the same thing when I heard it. In short it is jalapeño peppers (cleaned out) stuffed with cream cheese, wrapped in a layer of Italian sausage which is in turned wrapped in a layer of bacon. This is smoked for several hours then (I believe) grilled. We are both looking forward to this culinary delight! I just don’t want to leave the house let alone go to my place of work on my day off. Oh well!

I need to wrap this up. (Pardon the pun.) Sorry about the complaining. Thanks for reading and stay safe!

Animals, Cooking/Baking, Creativity, Dogs, Emotions, Exercise, family, Food, Life, Nature, Photography, retail, Thinking, Writing

Why Is It Snowing?

This morning is very dark. I would need a light on if I were reading. And cold. It got cold yesterday but when the sun came out it made all the difference! I played as best I could with the girls. My back was very bad yesterday. Today is a repeat. I have physical therapy at 10:45am then work at 2pm. I will be doing the gas an courtesy counter so I’m not sure how that will go.

Yesterday I spent mostly working on my werewolf novel. (Good gad…. there is snow blowing across in a straight line outside.) I got research done and I worked on a few characters nd some back story. I am extremely happy with myself! I also went through the first chapter of the novel that I am beta reading and did my notes. Yay! I am not sure if I will be able to work on anything before work. It will depend on how physical therapy goes. This cold isn’t helping either.

I did get some really nice shots with both my cameras yesterday. I find it funny that I seem to use both my Nikon and my phone camera for things. I don’t exclusively use one or the other. For a while it was just the Nikon on the phone camera was for when I didn’t have the Nikon handy. But I find that each has it’s purpose in my photography. I like having both to use. I would like to figure out why the Nikon doesn’t pick up colors as well as my phone camera. For sunset colors I usually always use my phone camera. the Nikon either doesn’t pick up any color or washes out what it does pick up.

The snow is coming down hard enough that I can’t see past the line of trees on the other side of the back fence line. Yuck. Not a fan.

Chris made an amazing dinner last night! It was essentially marinaded beef. With it was refried beans (with herbs etc added) and Spanish rice. He did the beef on the grill. Yum! The flavors were all the way through the meat (which was wonderfully tender)…. sigh. No leftovers! Lol

I keep looking out the window at the sideways snow. Blah. I will wrap this up and get some photos downloaded. I hope everyone has a great day! Thanks for reading and stay safe!

*edit* In the short amount of time it has taken to download the photos we have gotten about 1/2 an inch of snow.

Animals, Cooking/Baking, Creativity, Dogs, family, Food, Friends, Life, Thinking, Writing

A Little Bit of This and a Little Bit of That

Let’s see how fast I can write this…. Yesterday was a full day. I wrote to my new pen pal (my latest issue of Poets and Writers had an article about a woman who put together a site to help potential pen pals get together during the pandemic so I went to the site and signed up). Well one of two pen pals. I have on in Great Britain that I need to write to yet. The one I wrote to yesterday is in Maryland. I plan to stop by the post office and get an international stamp either on the way home today or some time tomorrow. I may hit the Dollar Store for some stationary too. If anyone wants the site let me know and I will be happy to share.

For those of you wondering the chipotle pork chops turned out rather well. I would’ve preferred that the spices got into the meat more (the recipe calls for thick steaks and the spices are essentially a rub). I cooked them in a cast iron pan. I think that always adds to the flavor as well. I am curious to see what next month’s recipe is.

We had company yesterday as well. A friend from my Younker’s days stopped by for a few hours. She and I caught up on things. She didn’t know that both Moose and Dante were gone. She’s been through a lot of crap too. But it was good to sit and talk. And give her the tour. She’d never seen the garage before and she always loves going around my office and the bedroom asking about the story behind various things. The girls enjoyed her visit as well. They got extra love and play time!

I can hear Essie snoring in the living room. She wouldn’t eat breakfast nor has she gone out to go potty. Stella, fortunately, has done both. She also stayed in here when I first started this to get her morning scratches.

I’ve been awake since 3:30am. Atleast that was the last time I looked at the clock. I seemed to wake up every hour or so starting around 11pm or so. No idea why. But I get out at 2pm and I have tomorrow off. The question is should I talk to Dad tonight or tomorrow night? I guess I’ll wait and see how I feel when I get home.

I better wrap this up. I still need to warm up my car. Thanks for reading and stay safe!

Animals, Cooking/Baking, family, Food, Life, Nature, Photography, Thinking

Dinner

The sun is fighting to be seen through the clouds. Strong winds are helping move the clouds around or even disperse them. I can see more and more blue sky. It is still a bitter cold out though.

I need to shower, do laundry and work on my writing today. It feels like all I did yesterday was anticipate going to Pearl’s. The sad thing was once we I got there I was ready to go. I started feeling like I was getting a cold the other day. At dinner I felt achy and my nose was running. When I don’t feel good I get very quiet. So Chris kept up what little conversation we had. There was hand holding and a lot of looking around, not just at the people but at all the stuff in, on and along the walls. Pearl’s is a New Orleans themed restaurant and has Mardi Gras as well as New Orleans things all over everywhere. I especially liked our waiter. He wasn’t there all the time just hovering but he was there enough to make sure we had everything we needed when we needed it. He did forget Chris’s cup of gumbo but made up for that by buying him a bowl of gumbo to take home (Chris had decided to upgrade the size and take it home for later to eat). The food was excellent as always. They have discontinued the sampler platter but we made up our own. I picked a good time for our meal as it was happy hour so a lot of what we got was specially priced. I had hoped to do dessert (I had my heart set on bananas foster) but I was just too full from the meal (I actually ate most of my plantation dinner as well as the appetizers which is unusual for me). On the way home we made a couple of stops (one was to get the missing ingredients for tonight’s dinner, chipotle pork chops, I’ll share how that turns out tomorrow) then we hunkered in for the night.

We set out some mouse traps last night (these are not mice that I feed the snake… but I have) for the mice that have come into the house from the cold. The little bastards (pardon my language) managed to get the peanut butter licked off the traps without setting them off! For those of you who think that I am being cruel I don’t mind sharing the house with them but when they start destroying things and we find their excrement in places like the silverware drawer I have issue and they must go.

I slept later than my normal late time so all I have for photos are of the girls. I’ll work on getting some decent shots to share today. Thanks for reading and thank you for all the support! Stay safe!

anxiety, Cooking/Baking, Creativity, Emotions, family, Life, Motorcycles, Nature, Tattoos, Thinking, Writing

Prioritizing

Yesterday was a success. I didn’t get everything done but I got the important things done. I got the time with my family (both at home and on the phone), I exercised and I got the article first draft written. Once I finish this I will go over the rough draft and polish it up then send it in. Today I feel relatively sedate. But I can feel panic trying to creep in. I really wish it would go away.

Yesterday I spent more time out of the house than I planned. Chris needed a few more things to make us potato soup so I said I would go to the store. I decided to take the long way “around the block” (the same route I use to take Rogue out for a ride (my motorcycle)) before going to the store. Angus (my Subie) has just been going the short distance for home to work all the time and I try to run him through his paces once a week or so to keep the engine happy. When I got to the store I ended up chatting with seemingly everyone employees and customers alike. I also picked up my schedule for next week. I need to take to the manager because despite me having left him a note about my appointment on Friday morning at 11am he has scheduled me at 11am to work. And that appointment is for my tattoo of Moose’s paw. I have waited 3 weeks and I’m not rescheduling it. I know he will fix my schedule but I am still annoyed that it even happened. What will probably happen is that I will come on after I am done. I have door duty that day so we’ll see. (We now have to have a greeter at the door because it is mandatory to have a mask on when you come in to shop. The nice thing is it sounds like it is an extra $5 an hour when you are the greeter. I am a greeter twice this upcoming week. That will be a nice addition to my check!)

The day has dawned a bit overcast. It is still a bitter cold so I haven’t got the trickle charger hooked up on the motorcycle. Sigh. Call me a wuss. When my hands get too cold though they hurt and I’m pretty sure that they would get very very cold outside trying to get everything hooked up. I still might try before work. We’ll see how the final draft goes. Speaking of which I need to wrap this up and get that written. Thanks for reading and stay safe!

Animals, Cooking/Baking, Creativity, Dogs, dreams, Emotions, family, Food, Friends, Holiday, Life, Love, Nature, Thinking, Writing

Being Thankful

Today is Thanksgiving here in the U.S. That got me thinking last night as I was falling asleep, remember what you are thankful for. I always try to find atleast one thing to be thankful for when I go to sleep at night. Some days there are a lot so I have to pick and choose. Some days I struggle to find one thing (it is usually that I got home safe to my family or that I have my family to come home to). Last night I had a cornucopia of choices. We were as busy as we’d been during the summer rush with the tourists. I was all over the store helping customers. The first part of my shift I was at the courtesy counter paired with one of my fave coworkers. We were singing and dancing and laughing a lot. The second half of my shift things really picked up and I was having fun with everyone. Despite being busy I still had energy so I came home and took care of the kids, cleaned the mouse cage, washed dishes, cleaned the rugs in the kitchen, swept and cleaned the floors in the kitchen as well as vacuumed. I also managed to get myself two articles to write (one is due today and the other Saturday). Trash also got taken out. Mind you I did strain my back by the end of the night and it was after midnight before we went to bed (my poor patient puppies) but so much got done that I don’t have anything that needs to be done around the house except making the pies (I am making an apple pie and pumpkin pie… the apple is from scratch including the crust but the pumpkin is out of a can since I didn’t get any pumpkins for Halloween this year but the crust will be from scratch) and stuffing for the turkey. So I can work on my articles and talk to family via whatever medium (Chris’s family will be either Skype or Discord, Dad ill be Facetime and Mom will be just talking on the phone). I guess the point of this long paragraph is that I have a lot to be grateful for.

I have an amazing family and equally amazing friends. I have probably one of the best jobs/workplaces ever. I was able to replace my car and get something that I never would’ve been able to without the Jeep having issues (I set aside a chunk of money to go toward the engine repair and that ended up going towards a down payment). I have three awesome dogs and have been blessed over the years to be Mom to so many pets. I am able to use my writing skills to earn enough money to pay bills (not just fun money). I have the best husband I could ask for. I wouldn’t have half of what I do or be the person I am without him. He has taught me so much over our life together and been there for me through so much.

I also have all of you reading this. I am very grateful for all of you because you read my work and share your thoughts and suggestions not just on my writing but on my life as well. I am blessed to have all of you! Thanks for reading! I hope you have a great day and stay safe!