Friday, March 27, 2015

Thursday's Mug

s'true, I've a habit of attaching sentiment to certain inanimate objects around my home.   Coffee mugs, for instance!
..... almost akin to my former boss who'd choose which martini glass she'd use, based on the mood in which she found herself at days end!

As you can see, we've no shortage of coffee cups!  (This, even after having released a dozen or more to Goodwill!)   Unfortunately, most are doomed to play the understudy for the rest of their useful lives.   They've no history!

Instead, each of my weekday mugs holds a special meaning:

Monday's mug is now a certifiably faded rose ... bearing the poem, Footprints.   One of my oldest and dearest friends gifted it when I left Texas so long ago.  The poem's meaning didn't touch me so much in those days, but I suspect Debra knew how important it would become.

... Tuesday's cup was discovered in a Santa Fe gift shop during my last excursion with mother.

... Wednesday's mug states, "I'm a Malti-Poo Mom" .... like it or not!  (A contribution from a wise woman who instinctively understood how much I missed Caraleigh and didn't especially welcome our new pups.)

... Friday morning reminds me, I'm only a few hours from "Bare Feet"!   All I have to do is look at Pooh's cheery countenance and I'm instantly transported back to the day my best friend and I spent at DisneyWorld, laughing 'til our insides hurt.

Did you notice, Thursday was missing?
No wonder I jumped at the opportunity to participate in Stephanie's 6th annual mug exchange.  I'm not sure if I prefer the gifting or the receiving part best!

But, there's a little girl inside me who still gets excited over receiving brown paper packages, tied up with string.    The moment I saw Thursday's mug I realized Adria totally nailed it.  Even the accompanying place mat is something I'd choose for myself ...and it was neat to know she shares my affinity for dark roast coffee.   I'd like to say something nice about the chocolate-covered pretzels, but DH beat me to the punch.   LOL.

Thank you, Adria!!!
Hugs from Phoenix!


As long as we're on the subject of java ... I wanted to share this great sounding recipe for Ree Drummond's 'crazy coffee'!
Generally I take my coffee straight-up black -- but after getting over the initial "Whaaaaat the heck?"this has my taste buds applauding.


Crazy Coffee

Prep Time:
Cook Time:


12 ounces, fluid Strong Coffee, Very Hot
1 Tablespoon Coconut Oil, Unrefined
1 Tablespoon Cold Butter (unsalted Is Recommended)

Preparation Instructions

Place all three ingredients in a blender and blend until emulsified, about 10-15 seconds (it will look like very creamy coffee). Pour into a coffee cup and enjoy immediately! (Warm it for 15 seconds in the microwave after blending if you'd like it to be very hot; blending cools it down slightly.)

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Cheesecake, carnations 'n buckets

Happy St. Paddy's birthday to me!

Normally, I try to keep my vital stats low key.
Then again, given the roads I've traveled - many of them unpaved - I'm sort of awed to be here.

So, I claimed a 'mental health' day off, and a little later DH is taking me to the Promised Land (i.e., Cheesecake Factory).

...and, I'm thinking to stop and buy myself a green carnation.  Some may recall, I really dislike hothouse 'cut' flowers.  Except carnations.   Family legend has it, I received my first green corsage as a toddler - a tradition my father observed each year until his death some 30 years later.

I'm not one for a lot of celebration, and in fact, have never tasted green beer. This year I'm feeling particularly reflective.  There are decisions to be weighed and timelines needing drafted.  It almost feels like New Years Eve all over again.

What better time than to re-visit my original bucket list!
While a few still qualify as 'possible', I suppose it's time I shelve the Improbable.

In no particular order, my 'for realsies' Bucket List  ...

  1. Watch the sunrise from a front-row bench at Grand Canyon's north rim
  2. Enjoy a trans-Atlantic cruise
  3. Revisit Austria, as an adult ... and perhaps take a whirl on a luge
  4. Shuffle and stutter-step my way around Rockefeller Center's ice rink
  5. Experience a Girl's Get-away with a few close friends, tbd ( ...any takers?)
  6. Return to Tuscany
  7. Hop a horse-drawn carriage for a leisurely evening ride through Central Park
  8. Observe the fire boats turning Chicago's river kelly green, then nosh at Billy Goat's
  9. RV across this great US of A and (hopefully) meet you ... and you ... and you over there! :)

You'd think I could come up with more than these 9, wouldn't you?
To be honest, I've had some improbably-incredible Life Experiences - unsolicited, all.  Some leave me appreciative ...others embarrassed ... all humbling.  

In closing, I love what the author Sarah ban Breathnach has to say about birthdays.  Perhaps you might, as well?

".....Many people who love you will try, but no-one can celebrate your birthday exactly the way you need for it to be observed. 
That’s because no-one knows the year you’ve just completed; no one else has lived it."

True that.

Thank you for being a part of my life!

Hugs from Phoenix!

Saturday, March 14, 2015

The Trump Syndrome

Dang, I did it again.
More times than I wish were so, I made a disparaging remark about one of DH's friends. In short, (I think) the man's an insufferable egoist; someone with whom I'd rather not share my leisure hours.

Rather than take offense (well, not much), DH's usual response is, "I just don't understand."    

See, he totally 'gets' there's another man in my life.
A egoist.  Some might say, 'insufferable.'

While I've never met 'the Donald', I'm captivated by Mr. Trump.
Obviously, it's not his dashing good looks (LOL).   His fortune is enviable, sure.
But, it's that elusive 'ish' factor that intrigues.

I'm at a loss to define it, but you know the feeling you get when someone walks in the room and almost unconsciously, everyone straightens their shoulders and stands a little taller?   ... someone who challenges you to be better than you are.

A few years ago - before Trump lost his bid to bring a high-rise hotel/office building to Phoenix's Camelback corridor - I'd daydream about working for the Trump organization.   Mostly, I was curious to see if his standards for service excellence actually translated down the line.
... or, if like many other (hypothetical) organizations, you've folks who are just there to collect a paycheck.

I like what Trump has to say about those who call him, 'lucky.'
"Luck only comes from working hard.  If your work pays off - which it most likely will - people might say you're just lucky. Maybe so, because you're lucky enough to have the brains to work hard!"

Then, there's the brothers Busch.
Talented?  Educated?  You bet!
Still, their egos are off-putting to many.   I'm accustomed to getting the odd look when the talk turns to NASCAR and I mention liking Kurt and Kyle.  
I was shocked and saddened to learn Kurt had been indefinitely suspended by NASCAR following allegations of abuse by a former girlfriend.   Excuse me, but whatever happened to 'innocent until proven guilty?'   Even this week, after Delaware's DA declined to press charges for lack of evidence, he remains on 'indefinite probation.'      
(.........Sorry, for going off on a tangent here!)

I'm still puzzled why people feel so strongly about Trump and the Busch boys.
From what I've read, they're all likable fellas ... only they're in an enviable position not to have to take garbage from anyone.    A friend of a friend's wife's daughter (how's that for 6 degrees of separation?) once came upon Mr. Trump in NYC and asked for an autograph.  She said he couldn't have been nicer.

Maybe, just maybe ... unlike DH's friend, I'm supposing they've earned their egos.  Call me envious, but it takes more than a fancy job or a luxury car to turn my head.

Have you a special someone you look up to?
Would your best friend agree... or regard you as if you just sprouted a second head?!

Thanks for stopping by!  I appreciate you!

Hugs from Phoenix,

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Happy 21st!

Sunrise, sunset
Sunrise, sunset
Swiftly flow the days
Seedlings turn overnight to sunflowers
Blossoming even as we gaze

This special girl young lady -- my first 'grand' -- will always hold a special place in my heart! 
Just as I was geographically estranged from my own grandparents, DH and I aren't able to visit Sarah and her sister in Alabama as often as we'd like.

Still, it's been a privilege to witness Sarah evolve -- from a sassy little live wire, to a kind, soft-spoken coed ...
... mom's confidant
... dad's football buddy (War Eagle!) 
... and most recently, 'Daniel's girl':  someone who seems to have appreciated receiving a baby goat ('Olivia') for Valentines -- more so than roses!

Happy, happy birthday, Sarah!   I hope all your new horizons are welcoming!

Friday, March 6, 2015

Friday Letters ... March 6 edition

Yay, we made it to the brink of another weekend!
Once more, I'm tickled to join Paula at Smidgens, Snippets and Bits for another edition of Friday letters.   If you've a moment - and haven't met her yet - please drop by and say, 'hi'!

Dear Executive
I'm sorry to have disagreed with you in front of others.   But yes, there IS such a person as Yo Yo Ma.   I'm no expert, but your excuse -- "But I'm from Detroit" -- seems like an unreasonable insult to much of that city's populace.

Dear Department of Motor Vehicles
Like many Federal and State agencies, I suppose you're suffering from increasing budget cutbacks. May I make a suggestion?
I think the biggest drawback to getting my license renewed is posing for that dang mug shot!   Regardless how I 'primp' before hand, my image always results in my looking like a convicted felon.
Now I've not a lot of discretionary income, but would be happy to pony up, say $10 or $15 for a 6-pack choice of poses ... and I've a hunch others would do the same

Dear Concert-Goers
Yes, Alan Jackson's performance was incredible.
Your enthusiasm and energy is enviable, but would you please, please just sit down?   We all paid good money for our seats -- including that group of senior citizens - some in wheelchairs!- who I'm pretty sure would like to see the stage (v. your derrieres).

Dear Facebook
Have to hand it to you ... that was slick.   I've not 'accidentally' sent someone a friend request in a long while - but each time, it was someone I've known.
I'm not sure how you and I accomplished it, but now I've a new friend from Alabama who I'd never heard of before!
Seems like a nice lady ....

Dear Mr. God
Frankly, the last couple of workdays were trying.   Thank you for keeping your arm around my shoulder and a hand over my mouth!

Hugs from Phoenix!

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Bet-cha I could do that!

Have you ever watched an ordinary someone go about their daily tasks and think to yourself, "Yep, I could do that!"

Some of you may recall my fascination with the art of laying brick.
Years ago, I spent a lazy afternoon watching masons work on the new home next door.  Lickety-split; there wasn't a wasted move.

Dollar signs danced in my head at the prospect of 'easy' money.  I wouldn't let it go.

So one day my (former) hubby invited me out back to help construct his new brick BBQ.

"Goodness, this masonry business isn't as easy as it looks!"
By the time he brought out the level for the umpteenth time, I muttered a few ugly expletives and stomped away.  Lesson learned.

... for the time being.
Silly, but here at an age when any self-respecting gal would be weighing her retirement options I'm daydreaming about entrepreneurial opportunities.    (Well, that and winning the Power Ball jackpot.)

For instance?   I've a passion to own n' operate my own indy bookstore.
Someplace where profits aren't as important as creating an atmosphere where people go to feel welcomed; cloistered, even.

... accessorized with comfy oversize wing-chairs, where (real) fireplaces simmer n' sputter and a fresh coffee's at the ready .   Perhaps a gentleman's parlor with cognac available for the asking, subtly vented to dispel smoke from their pipes.
(Sorry if that sounds chauvinistic, but I think some traditions were better left 'as is.'   If the feminists don't like it, they can go elsewhere.)

If that doesn't work out, I'm pretty sure there's a wee cafe in the deep South somewhere with my name on it.  (I started to ask, "How hard can that be?" -- but don't want to be laughed out of Blogville.)
Pardon the cliche, but I'd love to own such a spot featuring real 'comfort food.'
... where salads and sushi are conspicuously absent.
... where servers' eyes reflect the sincerity of their smiles, and they actually pause to listen after asking, "How are you?"
Oh! and where size 6's need not apply!

Since I've not much faith in Providence dropping a gazillion bucks in my bank account, these flights of fancy are just that.

Still, I hope I never outgrow those random moments that make me whisper, "Bet-cha I could do that."

What would you like to do, if you knew you couldn't fail?

Hugs from Phoenix!
Keepin' it real!