Animals, Books, Creativity, Dogs, Emotions, family, Friends, Gardening, History, Holiday, Learning, Life, Love, Movies, Nature, Photography, Reading, retail, Thinking, Travel, Writing

And Then There Were None

Late last night we fell asleep to the gentle tinkle of ice chunks bouncing off the AC units. This morning we didn’t have the predicted snow just a layer of ice on hard surfaces. The girls and I stayed up late last night after work watching a new vampire movie. It is actually an old German black and white entitled “Vampyre.” I have a small pile of related movies (“Nosferatu” in no less than three versions and a few other titles that are mentioned in background for the first two) that I hope to go through today. One of my coworkers loves movies and found out I did through our numerous conversations. So he has loaned me a pile of…. I count 19 movies to watch between now and May when he gets back. He also gave me two vampire movies, “Vampyre” and “Nosferatu the Vampyre” (this is the 1979 version). “Vampyre” came with a book that has a lot of background material including a copy of “Camilla” to read (or reread in my case). I am very excited to go through and see the various versions. I really enjoy the different beliefs about the vampire. It is interesting to hear what each part of the world thinks about them, how they live, die and what they actually are. I just love stuff like that!

We live in a valley so weather can be interesting sometimes. Not long ago at work when you looked out the gas/courtesy counter window in was pouring rain. But if you looked directly across the store out the deli doors the sun was out and no rain. This morning when we got up it felt even more like a deep hole. All these thick clouds surrounded us with just a small hole that had blue sky coming through. Since then the sun has come out and made everything sparkle as it melts the ice.

Both girls are snoozing. I have covered Stella with a blanket and since Essie likes to lay on the floor in front of the bedroom door I have started laying a big fluffy blanket down for her. I know she appreciates it because she snores loudly when she sleeps, lol. Kind of like when a cat purrs. Stella nudged the blanket when she got up on the love seat so I covered her. She made a little nest and went to sleep.

I am looking forward to two days off. I didn’t realized how keyed up I was for the party until now. So this will be a much welcome respite. Since Chris’s birthday is tomorrow we both have the day off. He wants to go out and about so I will try to bring my camera and get some photos. Something new to share on here. I also ought to download a few photos to my web site. I need to really get on the ball with that. I have just dabbled with it. Now that I have less on my plate (although things are about to get really crazy at work with a major shake up) I think I will make it a point to do more with my photography web site.

I should get myself together and wrap this up so I can get started with my day. I hope all of you have an amazing day! Thanks for reading and stay safe!

Aging, Animals, Creativity, Dogs, Emotions, family, Friends, Gardening, History, Holiday, Learning, Life, Love, Medical, Movies, Nature, Photography, retail, the World, Thinking, Writing

And the Countdown Begins!

It was a bit dreary when we got up but the clouds are moving away and the sun is coming out! Yay! It is still a bit crisp out but that is ok. I think this will make the colors pop even more on the trees. There are only a few more things to do around the house. Dishes, vacuum and clean off the end tables. Oh and get some stuff put away. I am very excited! I am contemplating dressing up for our movie watching event. Or do I save it for tomorrow? Or do both?

I got a good night’s sleep despite the pain. I came home early from work because I just could not function. This upcoming paycheck is going to be light but there is nothing I could do about it. And I am not going to worry about it. Yesterday’s doctor’s appointment was a bust. All the “secondary” pains seem to be stemming from the back. So I guess I atleast am narrowing the field of problems… or rather causes of said problems. So back to the GP I go. I will call Monday before work.

Essie has an upset tummy. I am pretty sure it is the Alpo treats. I himmed and hawed about getting them. I think I might call the 800 number. I wonder where they are made… Stella looks desperately unhappy. She wants my undivided attention and I had to shoo her away so I could do this. I keep telling them they will be busy this afternoon. Both Jim and Erin love them so they will play with them as much as they can. I am so excited to see them! I don’t know if we will try to do the haunted house tonight or not. It may depend on how many movies we watch. I know that Chris wants to see “The Crow” for sure tonight. We are trying to make that our yearly Devil’s Night viewing since that is when the movie takes place. I remember seeing the movie in the theatre and commenting that it looked a lot like Detroit on Devil’s Night when I was growing up. And it turns out that is where it was based on.

So much has changed from my childhood (I sound like my parents lol). I remember dressing up for Halloween at school and going trick-or-treating for blocks around our house with a group of friends. There was the one year I dressed as an Ewok (Wicket W. Warwick to be exact) and it was almost freezing and raining. Mom didn’t want me to go out but I had my heart set on it. So we compromised and I could go two blocks in every direction then come home. I think I got maybe half that. I got home soaked and cold. I remember Mom running a hot bath and making me soup. I also remember Halloween as a fun time of year. Everyone looked forward to it. Devil’s Night not so much because that was the night when pranks were played and if you lived in Detroit fires set. But Halloween was the BEST! I am sorry that future generations have lost that love and enjoyment.

I guess I could go out and snap some photos to put on here really quick. It has been so busy that I haven’t had time. Ooooo! I also got some cool writing gloves to keep my hands warm while I write. They have the beginning of Dracula written on them. (You can get others but I went with that. I wanted to get Cthulhu but the gloves were green and I am not a fan of green gloves. 😥) I will wrap this up and get some photos to post on here. I hope to have some really cool photos tomorrow as well! Thanks for reading and thanks for all the awesome responses. I love interacting with my readers!❤️ Stay safe!🎃

Aging, Animals, anxiety, Dogs, dreams, Emotions, family, Friends, History, Learning, Life, Love, Nature, Photography, the World, Thinking, Travel, Writing

Wounds Old and New

This morning is not a good one mentally or physically. The sun is shining and the insects are humming. The birds are chatting away. I am hoping the I will get in a better place as the day goes on. But right now…. not so good. It all boils down to me doing too much. I went outside my comfort zone for too long yesterday. I got a lot accomplished but too much of a strain. I am going to just stay home and putter today. Spend time with Chris and the girls while trying to find my balance. I can feel my anxiety pushing forward. There is a little bit of darkness mixed in as well.

Talking to my son (it feels so weird to say that and mean it… to have that specific connection and have it acknowledged by both sides….) Is opening old deep wounds that I had thought healed up. This is also made difficult because the questions he is asking are not meant to hurt me. He just wants to know about me. So that will be today’s…. hardship? Not really. Challenge? Better. I need to respond to his questions today. After I finish this as a matter of fact.

I was able to talk to both my parents yesterday. I shared more stuff with Mom and told Dad about my son. Right now I feel like I have gone in for invasive surgery to see if my wounds have healed. I went to bed way early for us (as soon as it got dark we were in bed). The long sleep did some good.

I did something good yesterday too. My beloved bracelet that has the human hand holding the dog paw? I am passing it on to a Vietnam Vet that ran point with his German Shepard. They basically went ahead of the platoon and spotted out the mines and such. His wife wanted to get him one but they are no longer available. So… I am giving him mine. He saw things that no one should and come home to an unwelcome at home. He was unable to bring his service dog back with him. I met the woman when I was checking in at the doctor’s yesterday. I wore my REDD tank top (Remember Every Dog Deployed) and she asked about it so we got to talking. She gave me her phone number to give to the gal about getting a bracelet like mine.

I can feel the tears coming on so I am going to wrap this up. Thanks for reading and stay safe!

Books, dreams, Emotions, family, Friends, History, Learning, Life, Love, Motorcycles, Photography, Racing, Riding, Sports, the World, Thinking, Travel, Writing

Motorcycle Book Review

   I don’t think that Alicia meant to be hero when she put together this book but in the end she is as much a hero as any of the other women represented in this book.  As a rider who is on again/off again on her motorcycle due to both physical ailments and anxieties of my own making buying this book has been the best money spent in a long time.  It rekindled the passion that lay buried beneath fear and anxiety to burn hot enough to break through to the surface like a Holy Grail.

   She lovingly recounts the lives and passions of role models new and old.  Many of the women I recognize as they are some of my own personal heroes.  I even found a few new ones to admire from like Lois Price who has been all over the world on solo riding tours (even places like Iran and Africa) as well as being an amazing author.  Then there is Mary McGee who was ground breaking in getting women into motorsports.  She has even been inducted into the AMA Hall of Fame!

   I also found more women to learn from.  New examples of a passionate life and a love for motorcycles.  Women who show us that women really can do anything.  They can ride, race, take solo tours around the world, set world records and even be mechanics and motorcycle designers.

   This is a perfect gift for someone- anyone- you love who thinks they can’t do it.  These women have beat the odds.  Better still this is the perfect gift for yourself.  Women to learn from.  Women that can show you your own inner strength and passion.

Find your inspiration.

Books, Creativity, Diving, Emotions, History, Learning, Life, Reading, the World, Thinking, Writing

Venting the Ship

I didn’t intend for this to be an angry post. But the more I read in the news the angrier I got. They are taking this author’s books away because they are racist, or they show this or talk about that. They have pulled this artist’s art work because they are offensive to this or that culture. I am over the cancel culture! Two problems for them. 1. You cannot and will not be able to please everyone. EVER. 2. YOU CANNOT CANCEL HISTORY! You can learn from other’s mistakes. But pulling down memorials and plaques and destroying things that are from that era that you think represent a bad thing isn’t going to change a damn thing. How about you step up and start at home by educating your kids to be decent human beings, whatever their race, religion, sexual orientation? The cancel culture is emulating what the people they are trying to erase are accused of doing. What happened to being a decent human being?

Ok. I am getting off my soap box. Rant over. Another thing I found while reading the news was rather interesting and very close to home. You may or may not know that I live in northern Michigan. I also have a love for archaeology. The article I stumbled on deals with a shipwreck that was found in Lake Michigan. I live next to that lake. The wreck site is across the lake slightly north of where I live. Another cool bit is that the ship was called The Griffin, which is my last name. It was considered a cursed ship and had disappeared on it’s maiden voyage. I don’t know a whole lot beyond that. And needless to say my interest is peaked. So do I continue to research this one? Or do I put it on a back burner (this is the second time this particular ship has popped on my radar in a few years, the last time I never followed through on any research despite my interest)? I am at a stuck point for my werewolf novel. I can go through my creativity books to try to get the juices flowing. Or…. I can start researching this. Comments? Suggestions? All are welcome!

I see that I need to wrap this up and get moving. Thanks for reading and stay safe!

Animals, anxiety, Books, Creativity, Dogs, dreams, Emotions, family, Friends, History, Learning, Life, Movies, Nature, Photography, Reading, retail, Thinking, Writing

Hunting Monsters

Well I survived. I did pretty well too. I had a very irate customer leave laughing so I guess I did the right thing. The closing thing went fairly smoothly. Matt gave a few pointers here and there but pretty much left me to my own devices and just stayed incase I had questions. I said he would do the same on Saturday (I am grateful as it will be a very long day (11am-8pm but longer for me since I have to close up the store). Sooooo there we are. I’m not sure how busy we will be Saturday. We weren’t too bad yesterday but we had our moments.

I asked for either Saturday or Sunday of next week off so I could spend time with Chris. I’ve worked the past two weekends and my one weekend day was our one day together. We’ll see what happens.

There is nothing on the web site about tonight’s meeting. I don’t know if it is a Zoom meeting or in person. The last one got cancelled because they did not have enough board members present. So after I finish this I will have to call the government office. I also need to call the vet to get medicine for the girls. Today is their heartworm and flea and tick medicine dose due date. I will probably stop by work to get the girls their meat for dinner as well.

It is dark but pleasant outside. I feel comfortable with the door open. The big question is do I do my running before or after Chris gets up? I can make good reasons for either. I guess it will depend on when the vet can have my medicine ready.

I feel guilty because I have not done my reading/critique on the novel I am beta reading because I have been working on my own novel. I am way behind for her. I sent her an email a few weeks ago apologizing for not having sent her a response yet and explained why. Is that a legit excuse?

Gah… I hear my neighbor across the street mowing. I need to think about mowing the backyard here soon. The front yard is a batch of unimpressive weeds. Short weeds at that. The back however is a receptacle for pounds of dog poop and is thriving. At the very least I need to get out the weed whacker and trim in the gardens. Hopefully the battery is still plugged in in the garage. I will have to check.

I took an after sunset photo when I got home last night. I only had my phone camera on me (I was taking trash out). I also took several of my patient pups last night. They didn’t eat until around 10pm (I didn’t get home until around 9:30pm and then had to cut up and cook the chicken for them). They both wanted to go right to bed but I needed to unwind so I found a werewolf documentary to watch. It was only an hour or so and it dealt with some local legends (we have the Dogman up here in Northern Michigan). They stayed out on the couch while I watched my program.

I suppose I should call the vet and then get my running done. Oh and call the government building to find out what is going on with tonight’s meeting. Thanks for reading and stay safe!

Animals, Creativity, Dogs, dreams, Emotions, Exercise, family, Friends, History, Learning, Life, Nature, Photography, Reading, Thinking, Writing

The Little Engine That Could But Chose Not To

I said I needed to be out the door by 9am today. I hurt and I really don’t’ feel like rushing around on my day off. The girls are stuck out here with me. When I leave and it’s not for work they will go in and out of the bedroom until I get back home. So I said I would shut the bedroom door to keep them out here while I do my running today. I had several places I was going to go today but I just hurt so my list keeps getting smaller. I would whittle the list down to one place but I need to get a few things before I run out. Sooooo…. But I am seriously thinking about not going all the way into Traverse to the bank. Problem is that is the closest branch. I am hoping I can scoot in and out quickly. I have to deposit cash otherwise I would be banking via my phone app. Looking at the clock tells me that I won’t be leaving at 9am. Oh well.

Physical therapy was a mess. Everything we tried I could only do for a limited amount of time if at all. One of the exercises that I did on my first day I can no longer do. Everything they have suggested I have tried doing before I even decided to go to a doctor. And things are just getting worse. I told the gal I had yesterday that I felt bad because it was like I was giving them too much information. She was very nice but I think she was getting frustrated.

I did my morning pages yesterday as well as going over another chapter for the author I am beta reading for. My goal is a chapter a day (or more) so I can get my notes together and send them out. I am hoping to do some more work on my novel today. But I seem to be doing mostly research, which is fine, but I feel that I am not working on the story (even though I am). I am making progress just not in the way I normally look for. I have managed to pick places that have limited info available on what I need. I hate to make things up (hahaha) but I like to base my work with some bits of truth and history in them. So I toil away at finding just what I need.

Alright, I guess I ought to wrap this up and get myself out the door. I am only running a few minutes late. Stella is upset with me. She has curled up on the couch as far away as she can get from me. Essie is asleep in the man cave by the sliding glass door. Here’s to hoping that I can get it all done and be back to meet my friend in Kalkaska by 11am. Thanks for reading and stay safe!

Creativity, Dogs, History, Learning, Life, Nature, Photography, Thinking, Writing

Histories and Personal Mysteries

Essie and I are in the dark trying to stay awake. Well I am. I’m pretty sure she went back to sleep. Still no word on whether or not Thursday’s meeting will be in person or not.

I have a new background idea for one of the novels. So the question is do I stop and do more research so I can include it or just continue on with what I have and then do it? I am not sure just yet. I am hoping that this background will help form the present storyline instead of just being background. (Or am I just using it as an excuse to do more research?) I have a few titles written down just incase….

I mentioned I have been binge watching a class on the Black Plague (I have until April 5th to get through 24 lessons). It has been very interesting but I have to admit one or two of the episodes so far have been rehashing the same information we already have which is disappointing because the instructor is very good and very easy to learn from. I think I am at the halfway point in my episodes.

Keeping with the writing theme I seem to have I am tempted to rewrite my now infamous mystery story from grade school. The story behind the story is we were supposed to write a short story with atleast one rough draft for class. I think we had a few weeks to do this. Well I remembered last minute in the morning it was due and wrote it in the back of the bus on the way to school. I got an A on it and she read it in front of the class. I remember being shocked when I realized that it was my story she was reading. Lol. Despite only having a rough final draft I still got an A. I’ve always been proud of that.

I see by the clock that I need to get going. I didn’t get many photos yesterday but I got some nice shots of the moon last night and this morning. I hope you like them. Thanks for reading and stay safe!

Animals, Creativity, Dogs, family, History, Learning, Life, Photography, the World, Thinking, Writing

Roaming Rats and Grey Skies

I was all set to type that the sun was shining brightly but by the time I sat down to do this things have turned grey. 😢 I do have some good news though. we received our stimulus money so with Chris’s help I have picked out a laptop. It should be here in about a week. It has all I need for my writing and a little more.

We have all been a bit restless the past few days. It has been especially noticeable with the girls. They seem to be in constant motion. What I’d like to do is be able to get some good action shots as they play but I am not quick enough to be able to grab the camera from around my neck, adjust the lens, and get off a few shots after I have thrown a toy for them. By the time I put the camera to my eye to adjust the lens they have caught the toy and are heading back to do it again. This is why I have mostly photos of them lying down. Lol

I am looking at the calendar to try to figure out my meetings for the month. I am not sure if we are doing them in person now or not. At the last meeting I covered the Village Manager said that meetings were going to start being in person as of April 1st due to a state mandate or some such. So I guess we’ll see. I have a meeting Thursday.

I am hoping to get some work done on my novel. I have been watching a class on the Black Plague which has rekindled my interest in medieval history. I think I might be able to find a bit of history that will tie in nicely with the plot. Funnily enough the course is on Amazon (the movie channel) and it is the same people that I got my photography, guitar and writing courses from. One fun thing is that the instructor has a set that she walks around as she talks. I have noticed that every few episodes a new rat appears (this is about the Plague after all) and the rats also move around the set. We are I’m up to eight now.

I had better wrap this up. Thanks for reading! Stay safe!

Aging, Dogs, dreams, Emotions, family, Friends, History, Learning, Life, Nature, the World, Thinking

What We Can Learn

This morning is the opposite of yesterday. As bright as it was the shadows today are darker. The sky looks cold and about to cry. Essie doesn’t feel well this morning. She didn’t eat breakfast and has been outside several times. Moose and Stella are curled up in the pile of blankets on the couch. I need to pull out two of those blankets to go in my car, Angus, soon. Moose needs to go to the vet this morning to get further tests on his kidney disease. His medicine should arrive today as well. Lol. I just let Essie back in and she made a beeline for the couch and is currently looking for a spot to lay with her siblings.

As I was watching and chatting with customers it struck me that all the “old” people were once young and all the young people will (possibly) become old. I listen to the stories of the older folks and laugh with them at the antics they got away with when they were younger. Then there are the older ones that flirt shamelessly cheeky monkeys that they are. They all have stories to tell. They have lived adventures we never can, survived things that we can’t understand. To ignore them is a shame on us. No matter how old they still have things to teach us.

And the young do too. They can teach us how to live life instead of worry about every little thing (although the pandemic is making a lot of them grow up and worry too soon). Thy remind us that we have imaginations that can take us anywhere, we just need to follow our hearts.

I guess the point is that we can still learn from each other. If we make the effort. Stay safe and thanks for reading.