Category Archives: Holidays

Journal: Week 1

(Thanks to Nova)

1. I’m most looking forward to making progress on my novel.

2. Three goals for this month: edit everything I wrote on my novel in November, exercise daily, blog daily.

3. Today is quiet and productive; wish I had Diet Coke.

4. Looking forward to seeing my grandbaby again soon.

5. I don’t want to forget how much fun I had over the holidays when my whole little family was together.

6. This year I’ll be going up to NorCal at least twice.

7. My top three priorities are: work, health, writing.

8. Places I have visited so far this year would be… home and work! Target and the gas station. Costco for an eye exam and to order new glasses and sunglasses. Oh, and the restaurant that didn’t have hot tea. 🙄

Advertisements

Staying Positive 🎉

I’m taking a cue from Revolutionary Musings and calling my plans for 2019 “goals,” not “resolutions.” When I think about the word resolution, it makes me feel I’ve done something wrong and need to improve. There’s the constant worry and pressure that I’ll fail ~ and isn’t that what so many people say? They’ve failed to keep their resolutions. Or they don’t even make any because they know they’ll fail. I want to be more upbeat this year. ☀️

Goals are positive. Even if we don’t reach them completely we can say we’ve made progress, and progress is good. Last year, I wrote/finished two new poetry books and they’re up for sale now on Amazon, and I completed the NaNoWriMo 50K word challenge. I’m proud of myself! 😀 Did I complete all my 2018 goals? No. But I don’t feel like a failure. I’ve made progress and will continue to do so.

For 2019, I want to finish my novel Ghosted. A novel is harder than poetry or a book of short stories, since when working full-time it takes an immense amount of focus day after day crammed into bits of free space. If I break my concentration for a couple weeks to “have a life,” it’s difficult to get that focus back. But this is the plan and I anticipate finishing my novel by the end of the year.

I also want to exercise more, which is a thing I say every year, and each year I feel worse and do less, but that doesn’t mean I should abandon the goal. This past year I was not very active at all and though I can’t do a lot, I can do a little, and I want to do that little bit. Realistically, there will be days I can do nothing but slog through from morning to night and congratulate myself for simply existing with chronic pain, but every day isn’t like that, TG. Those better days are days I can exercise.

Forex today. I planned to take a long (for me) walk to start the year off nicely. But I awoke with a migraine ~ not from booze, lol. I don’t drink alcohol. But I stayed up very late and it’s crazy windy too, both of which are triggers. Anyway, I’ve taken meds and later will exercise to a video instead of going outdoors. This is just how it is ~ I have to accept it and work within the parameters instead of giving up. 👊🏻

Regarding blogging. It brings me great joy, both writing and interacting with people who love to write. Those last three words are key though. I’ve culled some blogs from my list recently that weren’t much about the joy of writing and only about getting us to click links. No thx.

But there’s more. I like participating in the prompts; however, I don’t understand why some of them require so much kooky hoop-jumping. Linking back to the prompt post should be enough. I have created a few new tags for my faves, okay. But I’m not going to click frogs or create more tags or follow a pile of arbitrary rules just to bring more readers to the prompt host. In the end, it’s the host who gets the clicks, let’s remember this. ✅

My goal for 2019 is to get more reading and writing joy out of every minute I spend immersed in the world of words, so things that contribute to this goal have a solid place in that world… and things that don’t or that gobble up more time than they’re worth, do not. 👎🏻

Going along with this goal is reading less news. Most of the “news” isn’t really news ~ it’s tabloid type crap and a waste of my time, more of an addiction really. He said/she said, insults, rehashing, garbage about celebs and the royals, blah. It’s only going to get worse with the 2020 election coming up. 👿 I don’t need to read every scrap of nasty gossip and all the hot takes on what someone else said and who is banned from where. It’s simply tiresome.

I may begin doing some photos again, with a catch ~ they’ll be new photos. No more spending gobs of time trawling through old albums taking photos of photos. Bleh! If I happen to catch a shot of something that goes with one of the City Sonnet themes, cool. This aligns with my goal of having fun blogging and interacting with bloggers, but not wasting time doing boring, obsessive stuffs.

Onto forming happier, more productive traditions!

Happy New Year!

The Haunted Wordsmith had a great idea to post some songs for the transition into 2019. Here are some of my fave uplifting tunes to start the year on a positive note!

May your New Year be awesome! 🎉🥳✨

New Year’s Eve Quiz

Let’s see how well you’ve been paying attention to my poasts all year. 😀🎉🎈

1. In preparation for a night of partying on NYE, Paula will spend the afternoon of December 31…

A. Cooking a fabulous meal from scratch for lots of guests.

B. Getting a glam makeover at the salon.

C. Probably reading blogs.

2. When Paula arrives at her NYE destination, she is most likely to jump right into…

A. Chatting with the nearest cat or dog.

B. Networking with a group of business peeps.

C. Dancing like a maniac.

3. What will Paula be drinking on this festive occasion?

A. French champagne, daaaahling.

B. Brewskis!

C. Tea, preferably hot.

4. It’s an hour or so before midnight ~ what’s Paula likely to be doing?

A. Playing a board game.

B. Lighting sparklers on the beach.

C. Prank calling the local PD.

5. What does Paula do when the clock strikes midnight?

A. Grabs the closest man and gives him a big smooch.

B. Screams and yells and makes as much noise as possible.

C. Nothing much cuz she’s tired and wants to go home already.

6. Okay, it’s New Year’s Day, January 1, 2019. What’s Paula up to?

A. She’s begun a whole new life, sailing around the world cuz adventure is her middle name!

B. She’s nursing a wicked hangover and wonders who the strange man is in her bed.

C. Nothing, just chills at home with the cat.

Hey everyone! Have a happy eve and stay safe. See ya on the flip side! 🎉🍾❤️

After the eggnog is gone…

For today’s challenge (not to be confused with tomorrow’s challenge that I poasted yesterday), Rory asks us to create a top 5 song list for Christmas. Well, I’ve already mentioned my fave xmoose songs a few times, but as we know the holidays see a lot of romantical type breakups. Something about all that pressure and prezzies and fighting over the last perfect tree-shaped c00kie. With that in mind, here are my top 5 songs about breaking up, over the hols or whenevs.

She put a big F-U in my future…

It ain’t me you’re looking for, babe…

The old-fashioned block sender…

Being all philosophical about it…

THE HELL WITH THIS CRAP ANYWAY!

Oopsy, almost forgot my taggaroos. Anyone who has participated in any of the music challenges recently is hereby tagged! Lists please ASAP. Don’t forget to link back to Rory. 🙂🎶

Christmas Lights

Here are a few pics from my Christmas Eve tour of lights. Hope you enjoy them and are having a lovely Christmas too. Thanks for the gift of your readership! ❤️🎄🎁

I didn’t take as many pics as I usually do ~ I was just enjoying the drive with family. The top photo is from Laguna Hills. I thought it was simply adorable. The bottom three are from a house in Fountain Valley which has lights changing colors while synched up to music. So cool.

Today my plan is to read and relax. 🐱

A Very Norty Christmas [an impish tale 1247]

Santa banished the Norty Imps to the dusty old storeroom. “You troublemakers stay out of my way until after Christmas,” Santa said. “I’ve got work to do and can’t be bothered with your shenanigans today of all days!”

The imps were sad for a mo, thinking they were going to be bored out of their silly heads for the next 24 hours, until one of them began opening the boxes in the back.

“Looky!” he cried. “Norty fings!”

He held up a black lacy bra and thong set. The other imps scampered to the boxes to find more norties. “A dildo!” “A norty book!” “A purple vibrator!”

“No one wants them anymore,” one imp said. “Everyone asks for iPhones. What can we do with these?”

“Send them to a church full of nuns!” another imp suggested.

The Norty Imps cheered and jumped for joy at the idea of a fun new tricksy plan.

One of the imps pulled out his iPad. “I’ll make a list with directions for the ‘deers.”

“Which ‘deers?” another said. “They’ll know the list ain’t all official like.”

“I know just the ones,” iPad Imp said. “Quick, help me break out of here. Who has the key codes?”

*

Ipad Imp approached the group of reindeer at the North Pole Starbucks who were all texting on their phones. “Hey, guys. Job for you.”

Sierra looked up. “Huh? I thought Santa gave out all the assignments yesterday.”

“This is a special late job,” Ipad Imp said. “He thought you might be suited for it, being so technically adept and all.”

“Oh yah,” Bruno said. “I’m totes into tech.”

“There you go then.” Ipad Imp grinned at the group. “I’ll just share my GPS file with you and Bob’s yer uncle.”

Giselle frowned at him. “Who’s Bob?”

The imp rolled his eyes. “Never mind that. Finish your drinks, go potty, and I’ll take you to the sleigh. We gots it all loaded up nice and full, ready to go.”

*

Roxy poked Clove with her hoof. “Dude, I think we should have arrived by now.”

They’d been flying for hours through the dark velvet skies. It was snowing now and Roxy was bored. Her movie had failed to load on her FlyPad. Annoying!

Clove removed his earbuds. “What? Are we lost?”

“I’m not sure,” Roxy said, “but this is taking forever. Ask Sierra if she downloaded the GPS update.”

Clove pulled Sierra’s tail and asked her. “No,” she said. “I forgot to check for updates before we left because of all the drama with my ex. But Bruno has the list.”

Bruno turned around. “Did someone say my name?”

“Are we lost?!” Roxy yelled.

“I took the scenic route!” he laughed.

Giselle began to cry. “I have a breakfast date with Noel.”

“Wait,” Sierra said. “Since when are you going out with Noel?”

“You guys broke up like a week ago,” Giselle sniffled. “So, why do you care?”

“Um, hello. We were only taking a break a week ago,” Sierra said. “That’s not being broken up.”

Roxy butted in, “Maybe we shouldn’t do this here?”

“Do what?” Giselle said. “Like why do I have to apologize for anything?”

“I don’t think she asked you to apologize,” Clove said. “But we’re really trying to find this church full of nuns.”

“Hey,” Noel called from the back. “I see a church.”

Bruno shook his head. “My GPS from the imp doesn’t list a church there. It’s supposed to be around the block.”

They flew around the block, but there was no church.

“Are we in the right town?” Sierra asked.

“Do I look like an idiot?” Bruno said. “Silver Springs, em eye.”

“Michigan, okay.” Roxy shrugged. “Let’s go.”

*

The hackers worked diligently in the abandoned church, hoping to have their entire evil scheme completed at 3am on Christmas morning. The world would slowly wake up to the fact that they were in charge and begin to understand the futility of resistance. Soon the ransom money would flow into their offshore accounts or else worldwide energy grids would become dysfunctional.

“Utterly brilliant,” Hank said. “Pure mad genius.”

Hugh nodded. “Almost there. Hester?”

“Capturing Japan right now. Another few minutes.” Hester looked up and smiled.

“The best thing is that we stay undetected until we decide to show our strength,” Hank said. “It really–what’s that noise?”

Hester went to the window. “I don’t see anything, but I hear clomping on the roof.”

“You guys,” Hugh whispered, “look.”

Around the old stone fireplace the air began to shimmer and fill with sparkling snow. Through the fog, six reindeer materialized holding gift bags in their mouths and with more gifts piled on their backs. They gently deposited these around the fireplace as the hackers watched in stunned silence.

“Where’s your tree?” one reindeer asked.

Another one said, “You don’t look like proper nuns. Roxy, aren’t they supposed to be all girls?”

“That one’s a girl.” “What about those two?” “Where are all the churchy things?” “Are you sure this is right?” “Lemme see that list?” “This says em oh not em eye.” “What?” “Missouri!”

“SHUT UP!” Hank yelled, pulling out a gun.

One of the reindeer began to cry. “Noel, help!” “What am I supposed to do?” “Okay, I’m downloading the updates.”

“Maybe we should just shoot them,” Hester said.

Hugh shook his head. “They may be on the endangered list. We don’t want to call attention to ourselves. Let them just poof out of here the way they came.”

*

Retired Lieutenant Stan the Dogwalking Man was very grumpy about the fact that Lucky McMuttface insisted on going out to do his biz in the middle of the night on Christmas Eve. Stan suspected it was due to all the scrummy treats people had been surreptitiously sneaking to Lucky when Stan wasn’t looking. As they walked past the abandoned church on Third Street, Stan heard yelling and crying inside, which wasn’t right. He immediately texted his old buddies down at the station house and a minute later the street was filled with police cruisers.

*

Back at the North Pole, on the day after Christmas, Santa congratulated everyone on another successful holiday. “And I want to give a particular shoutout to my newest team, headed by Bruno, who cleverly managed to foil a group of criminals. The Silver Springs police department is giving all six of you honorary badges.”

“Ooh badges!” Giselle exclaimed. “Noel, could you fasten mine please?”

Sierra rolled her eyes.

As Santa’s elves and reindeer headed off to the post-Christmas party, he said, “Hold on a minute, you lot.”

Ipad Imp batted his eyelashes. “Do you mean us?”

“Don’t you give me that phony innocent look,” Santa said. “I know you Norty Imps had something to do with that mess in Missouri. What happened to the stuff in the storeroom?”

The imps began fidgeting and giggling, earning them a glare from Santa. “Knew it! Spill the beans, Norties!”

The imps began making farty noises, as they always did when commanded to spill the beans. This sent them further into paroxysms of laughter. Santa growled and stomped his foot.

“I’m warning you!”

Ipad Imp held up his hands in mock surrender. He controlled his giggles and said, “We donated the norty gifts to the police officers gag gifts fundraiser. That nice retired cop thought it was hilarious!”

“One day you imps will go too far.” Santa shook his head. “But today… let’s party! Eggnog and cookies await us. Merry Christmas!”

TinDERRRRRP [SOCS]

Tinnitus is such a pain in the ear. I just wanna start muting my brain. It’s like the same tinned note playing on repeat to drive me bonkers and no way to tinker with the volume controls. The tiniest change in my environment can cause it to go up to 11, so irritating.

Fooled you with my title, didn’t I? You thought this writing was gonna be about dating sites, didn’t you? Nahhh, the less said about those bulletin boards of barf the better, my view. It’s Christmas-tine, let’s play with tinsel and frosting, amirite?

Question Jambalaya

I’m mixing all the questions I’ve been marinating in my drafts folder together in one delicious, deluxe poast for a Friday pre-Christmas jambalaya… yummy!

From Kristian:

1. What will you be eating on the 25th of December?

– That’s a good Q! I don’t know ~ I’m seeing the fam on Sunday and Monday, but No. 1 Daughter has to drive back to NorCal on the 25th, so that might just be me-time. Maybe a long walk to clear my head, then writing all day. Food, eh.

2. What would you like to see happen in 2019?

– Much less chaos/drama/craziness in every way and in every area of life… and if only our leaders could set a good example, but obviously they can’t or won’t… we can still strive for calm in small ways however and take steps to eliminate drama from our lives. I’ve been doing this for some time and plan to continue.

3. Name three things you are grateful for.

– Family, job, relatively good health.

From TaoTalk:

1. Who is your favorite actress? What’s your favorite movie she is in?

– Meg Ryan. When Harry Met Sally.

2. Who is your favorite actor? What’s your favorite movie he is in?

– Tom Hanks. You’ve Got Mail.

3. Who is your hero(ine)?

– My real life friend Judene.

4. If you could live anywhere (and your family wanted to go with you and you could afford it), where would you live?

– NYC.

5. What’s your fondest memory from childhood?

– Visiting the Natural History Museum in NYC.

6. What’s your fondest memory from adulthood?

– Going to the fair with my girls and my mom.

7. If you could meet one celebrity who would it be?

– Stephen King.

8. Cake or pie?

– I’ve had so much cake that I… oh hell cake.

9. What’s your favorite kind of tree?

– Weeping willow.

10. Coat or layers?

– Layers, then coat.

11. If you could be one person for a day, who would you be and what would you do?

– Bill Gates, and he would decide to transfer half his money to me.

From The Haunted Wordsmith:

1. Smashed apples, peaches, pears, or bananas?

– Er, must I? Bananas, I guess… then I will make banana bread with chocolate chips!

2. What body part (of yours) has been smashed the most (keep your mind out of the gutter lol)?

– My head, when I squoosh it to try to stop the pain.

3. What world record would you like to smash?

– Woman miraculously cured of migraines and tinnitus at age 57! By eating c00kies! All hail the power of sugar! And butter. Don’t forget the butter.

4. Which two books would be better if they were smashed together?

The Scarlet Letter and The Happy Hooker.

5. What two songs would be good smashed together?

– “I Need A Lover” and “Diamonds Are A Girl’s Best Friend”

6. Which one would you smash together: US and Europe (wipe out the Atlantic Ocean) or US and Asia (wipe out the Pacific)?

– I don’t like smashing Europe bc then there’s no hope of the resurgence of Atlantis. “Down below the ocean…” But I’m a bit scared of eliminating the Pacific. What happens to Australia? I don’t want their scary snakes over here.

7. What foods are best served out of a blender?

– Idk, milkshakes?

8. What is your biggest pet peeve?

– People trying to sneak scary Australian snakes over here (glares).

9. It’s the Purge…do you participate? (If yes, what do you do?)

– Kill all the men, round up the sheep, and… oh wait, wrong movie.

10. You see a smashed window and an open store…do you loot?

– No. Could be loose snakes in there.

11. Have you ever thrown something through a window?

– So I could go looting? Good plan! Um no.

12. What movie would you like to see smashed into millions of non-repairable bits?

– Tusk.

13. Genghis Khan, Xerxes, Patton, Hitler, Stalin, Churchill, Alexander the Great, or Leonidas…which one(s) would be most successful at smashing the alt-right back into the time-out corner?

– All we need is… Retired Lieutenant Stan the Nazi-Fighting Man! 😀

Fluffy’s Interesting Christmas [flash 321]

Fluffy is a good boy. Yes, he is. He didn’t knock down the tree like Mittens did. Kitties are silly! And he didn’t eat the cookies the Food People left out all night on a plate. Of course as soon as they let Mittens out of the kitchen she pushed the plate on the floor and smashed it to bits. Kitties are bad!

Fluffy is a good boy. Everyone says so. He sits quietly while all the New People come into the house with packages. Some smell like food and this makes him happy. He woofs softly and wags his tail. People pet him. Mittens yowls from the kitchen. Kitties are noisy!

Fluffy is a good boy. But the front door is open and there is a squirrel and it’s so easy to run right out and Fluffy doesn’t know exactly how it happens but suddenly he is chasing the squirrel up a tree and next a mouse and a butterfly and now he’s far away from the Food House, oh dear. Fluffy wonders what he should do.

Fluffy is a good boy. He wags his tail at the New People who approach him, check his tags, and put an ouchie under his skin. The nice lady gives him a treat and this makes him happy. The nice man says, “All good. It’s transmitting.” The New People go away in their car. Fluffy woofs. He wishes he could have more treats.

Fluffy is a good boy. But he’s sad and hungry now. He misses the Food People and even that bad kitty Mittens. “There you are, Fluffy!” Yay, it’s the Food Man, jogging down the street with Fluffy’s leash. He snaps it on and they go home.

“Fluffy’s a good boy,” the Food Lady says to her coworkers from the Pod, “but he’s just a baby.” She gives Fluffy a yummy piece of ham from her plate and he is happy.

~*~