Tag Archives: exercise

Caramels [SOCS]

Caramels

Linda gives us a “point and shoot” prompt today and I ended up with caramels from the novel Manhattan Beach by Jennifer Egan. I’m about 8% done and enjoying it. The protagonist’s father is describing how it was to grow up poor and steal candy.

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I ate a lot of caramels in high school. They were sold in convenient packs of five for like a dollar. Sometimes I’d buy two packs. I had lunch right before Phys Ed in senior year, and it was nice to stick a pack in my pocket to have something to munch on while other people were doing sports. Obviously, I was supposed to be participating in sports too, but meh.

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Caramel apples

I went through a caramel apple phase. I liked to get those round wraps at the store, cover my apple and zap. They weren’t as good as the ones from candy stores though. My daughter worked at Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory for a while, and they had incredibly delicious caramel apples with fancy decorations. Haven’t been back for a long time.

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The sweet/salty bliss of crunchy caramel popcorn is a welcome treat. I especially love the kind that has big globs of caramel plus nuts too. Mmm…

Haven’t had any for ages. It’s a nice snack while reading a book, which is where I began this post.

Caramel popcorn

~*~

©️2021 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted. Please check out Paula’s books for sale on Amazon.

Last Share of 2020!

share your world

Melanie has given us some brain-crunchy end-of-year questions today. Can’t wait to see 2020 slinking out the door with its tail between its legs. BUH-BYE!

1. Pick three words to describe this past year.   (please keep them PG. Thanks). ~ scary, sad, lonely.

2. What were the best books you read this year?   Or the best movie you saw?  ~ I read several good books this year. When We Believed In Mermaids by Barbara O’Neal was probably my favorite. I also enjoyed the weird movie Vivarium on Amazon Prime.

3. Because there was lots of time for looking inward, what is one big personal lesson you learned this past year? ~ to not be so judgmental. Everyone is imperfect, including me. I thought I would accomplish so much during all this down time, but it turns out I’m not that disciplined and chronic pain depletes my energy. I have given myself the gift of not being so hard on myself. It’s okay if I don’t exercise or write as much as I planned to, or at all. It’s okay just to get through the day sometimes, even if I’ve wasted most of it playing games on my phone.

4. Do you think Covid has strengthened or weakened societal bonds? ~ Neither. People are as they always have been. Everyone says they will cherish their family time more after this is over and blah blah blah, but as soon as we’re all vaxed, people will behave the same as they did before. In fact, they still are, if you consider how horrible people are treating each other online over politics, mask-wearing, and every other thing.


GRATITUDE SECTION (Optional of course):

What is a New Year’s Wish You’d Like To Share With the World? I wish people would quit being such assholes to each other and reacting with rage when others have different ideas and desires. Why do you care if gays get married or some dude decides he’s a woman or a woman wants to terminate a pregnancy? Leave them alone and live your own life!

happy calm life peace

Holiday Share

Bitmoji gingerbread

Melanie gives us some seasonal Share Your World questions today…

Do you enjoy skiing or ice skating or if it’s warm where you are, hiking or enjoying outdoor sports?

Basically no to all except normal walking on the beach or in the park. I love to see snow (if I’m dressed warmly), but have never skied. I’ve ice skated indoors, but I won’t be doing that again with all my aches and pains. I’m a terrible skater anyway due to balance issues.

Do you give to charities or homeless that you might encounter, during this time of year, more than you do otherwise?

I don’t have a lot of income to give away, but throughout the year I give a little here and there to various causes. The holidays don’t motivate me to give more. Generally I don’t give to beggars/homeless because they annoy me so much. Occasionally I may give to a woman though, but never a man. GET A JOB.

What is the most enjoyable activity you engage in during December?  Is it a tradition for you and your family?

I’m not big on traditions, but I do enjoy driving around and seeing the Christmas lights.

Christmas lights

What changes will C-19 bring to your festive celebrations this year?  

The same as it’s done all year ~ no gathering with friends at restaurants, no movies in theaters, no potlucks, no game nights, on and on. One of my friends always has a super fun NYE party, so that’s out too. 🙁

Christmas -holly-banner

GRATITUDE SECTION (Optional of course):

Please share a good will wish for the world!

I wish everyone would buy my new book Ghosted ~ it is finally ready after 3 years! 😍

I Feel Pretty!

Bitmoji stars

Carol Anne @ Therapy Bits has nominated me for a Beautiful Blogger Award! Thank you, Carol Anne. 🌹

The idea is to list 7 random things about me, and then nominate 7 more bloggers. I will do the list, but I am not nominating anyone. Yer all beautiful! ❤️

1. I have not only already bought my holiday gifts, but also I wrapped them yesterday.

2. Yesterday I bought some wrapping paper, and mistakenly left it in my grocery cart as I tried to dodge the rain. ☔️

3. But I already had paper in that color at home anyway! 🤣

4. The shirts/sweaters and pants in my closet are organized by color, but my socks are every which way.

5. To celebrate yesterday, my roomie and I roasted a ton of veggies. Woo! Party time!

Veggies

6. I have been doing new exercises to help my back pain, and these are called “pigeon poses.”

7. I discovered last night that I can clean my laptop screen perfectly with the soft eyeglass cloth I got at Costco. Yay!

Enjoy the rest of your Sunday, my friends!

Gatsby

~*~

©️2020 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted. Please check out Paula’s books for sale on Amazon.

Experimental Share

Okay, the happiness engineers say they are working on the disappearing images in the app issue, but in the meantime, don’t make an image the first element of your post ~ also Ashley’s featured image solution works if you must have an image first. I did that and it worked. For this post, I’m trying the other thing (putting text first).

SYW

Melanie has a new set of questions for us today…

What’s the tallest building you’ve been to the top of?

I’ve been to the top of the Sears Tower in Chicago and also the Space Needle in Seattle. Whichever one of those is taller, that one.

What do you do to keep fit?

Bitmoji laugh

Run around in circles, leap to conclusions, skate on thin ice, and laugh my ass off!

What’s your jack-o-lantern carved to look like?

The last man I slept with, so I can set him on fire, mash him up to bits, and run him over with my car. Just kidding! I’m so over that whole thing, pffft… 🎃

Do you have hope or have you lost it?

I’m very anxious about the US election. If the impotus wins again, things will keep getting worse as they have all year. If Biden wins, I’m afraid bunches of rightwing gun nuts will go bananas. 😳

GRATITUDE QUESTION:

Feel free to share something you’re grateful for! Images and photos or poems, essays or free writing (stream of consciousness) pieces are all acceptable! AND you don’t have to do this part, it’s always optional!

I’m grateful the WP happiness engineers replied to me immediately about the image issue, offered me a temporary solution, and are fixing the problem. They say! 👻

Halloween rainbow pumpkins

~*~

©️2020 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted. Please check out Paula’s books for sale on Amazon.

FPQ71: Senioritis

Fandango’s provocative question

Fandango provocatively asks…

How old are you* and how old do you feel — older or younger than your actual chronological age? Do you generally act your age? And what does “acting your age” mean to you?

*If you’re uncomfortable revealing your actual age, maybe you can just say something like, “I’m in my twenties.” Or fifties. Or “I’m a senior citizen.”

I turned 59 during the lockdown. It was not a big deal… although my family gifted me a new phone, which was awesome. ❤️ The fact that I didn’t have a celebration with a cake and such didn’t bother me at all. I had plane tix to fly to Northern California and visit family, and I was sad that couldn’t happen. Dunno when I’ll be able to go…

Do I feel 59? I don’t know. What should 59 feel like? There are lots of people my age (and older) who are way more physically active than I am, but I wasn’t physically active at 39 or even 19! I’ve always been a chair potato. More things hurt now though. Seems like pains don’t go away but simply accumulate. Parts of me I never noticed before suddenly have nerve endings. What’s up with that? I’ll go for a walk and the side of my foot will hurt. Huh? 🙁

Do I act 59? Again, how should a 59-year-old behave? I am definitely a mature and responsible person. But I think in the last few years my behavior has changed even more… I attribute that to my last failed attempt at a relationship. Perhaps it is due to age and this would not have affected me the same 10 or 15 years ago. This time, I just said the hell with putting myself out there and taking chances on people. I’m done. I can’t handle another go-round of stress and drama.

I notice people of all ages seeking conflict because they’re bored, and I notice people of all ages avoiding drama. So I don’t think this is age related, necessarily, even though for me it does seem that I handled stress better when I was younger. My aching head and tired bones don’t appreciate the adrenaline surge that gets my heart racing and makes it harder to sleep. No thanks.

But you know what? The fact that I’m now a grandma (she’s almost 2!) does make me feel older and I’m good with that! 💖💖💖

Great question!

~*~

Image from Fandango himself.

©️2020 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted. Please check out Paula’s books for sale on Amazon.

Sadje’s Questions

Bitmoji chameleon

The lovely Sadje tagged me for some Q’s. Thanks for the opportunity to talk about one of my favorite subjects! 🤣

What is your favorite time of the day?

Lately I’ve become an afternoon person. I don’t mean since The Thing, but gradually over the last decade or so. I used to love mornings, but I’m pretty achy when I first wake up now and it takes me a while to feel okay and be productive.

How strict are you with yourself, regarding health?

I’m good about not overeating, but I’m terrible at exercising. I’m good about eating veggies and not subsisting on Snickers bars like I used to, and I rarely touch alcohol.

Do you follow back a blogger who follows your blog?

Mostly not, unless they comment and their blog interests me. If they simply follow and like posts, I may not even notice them.

How do you deal with criticism in real life?

Depends who it’s from. If it’s from someone who is signing my paycheck or someone I gave birth to, I’ll take it seriously. Anyone else, probably not so much. This is different from writing critique when I’ve requested it, of course. 🙂

How do you deal with criticism in the blogging world?

Usually they get thrown in the trash. I am not obligated to provide a forum for jerks and meanies. They can post their crap on their own blogs. Way back in the day, I thought I should allow all comments to pass through, but why? This is my space. Anyone can get their own.

Any ideas about how we can turn the current situation to our advantage?

Yes. The auto insurance companies have reported a decline in claims during the past couple months since people have been staying home. This is obvious, right? Fewer miles driven = fewer accidents = fewer injuries and deaths. But really think about that every time you get in a car. It’s one of the most dangerous things we do. 😬

Are you a dessert person?

I used to be. I used to crave sweets and make a dessert my whole meal. I’m sure I still would if it was available. But I seem to have lost the intense cravings I once had, and I’m much more satisfied with healthy choices. 🥑

What colors do you like to wear?

I like a bunch of neutrals in browns, black, beige, white, etc. and then one thing in a bright color like pink or turquoise. Or on the weekend I might put the brighter colors together if I’m feeling whimsical.

What color decor you like around you, in your home?

Browns and animal print things. 🐯

What is your favorite place to write from?

Probably my kitchen table on my iPhone.

Do you like getting Blogging awards?

Sure! It’s nice when someone thinks of me. I hope people don’t mind if I only answer the questions though and don’t tag anyone.

~*~

Image from Bitmoji.

©️2020 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted. Please check out Paula’s books for sale on Amazon.

The Monday Peeve 35

Monday Peeve kitty

Smiles and positive posts are all well and good, but sometimes I need to vent a bit. How about you? That’s what The Monday Peeve is all about, a chance to blow off a little steam at the beginning of the week, so then we can go merrily on our way once again (hah). I’ll pick a topic that’s on my mind, but you can vent about whatever you please, here in comments or on your own blog. Grab the photo, use the #TMP tag, and link back to me (or not ~ I dgaf), and Bob’s yer uncle. I do reserve the right to delete any links that offend my delicate sensibilities. So far, none have, but it could happen! I have feelings!

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Man, this one is sure overdue and I can’t believe I’ve waited until TMP 35 to mention it. I’m sure you know what I mean. Right? RIGHT? I am talking about yours truly. Yep, this peeve is about me, myself, and I, that annoying trio of wishy-washy, say one thing and do another, can’t make up their minds, flippety flopperoos. Gahhh, they drive me nuts! One day they say they’re gonna exercise and there they are again, just blobbing around doing nothing but sit-sit-sitting and making excuses. Another time they’re gonna “work on their novel,” but instead I see them reading blog posts, checking the news, and just generally goofing off. Oh, here’s a good one… they decide to “cook healthy food.” Bwahahaha, don’t make me laugh! Why then is the trash filled with empty boxes of Lean Cuisines? Grrrr, I wish they’d stick to their plans! 😡

~*~

Image originally from Pixabay.

©️2020 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted. Please check out Paula’s books for sale on Amazon.

Bingo Update 5

Book bingo challenge

See my previous update here.

For the anthology box, I read When Love Rises by Michelle Stradford. I enjoyed it and gave it a 4-star review. Not 5, since I couldn’t connect that well with some of the poetry at the beginning. Here is my full review on Goodreads, Amazon, etc.:

I especially connected with the later poems in this book where I felt her true soul was laid bare. That painful, powerful imagery resonated with me. Throughout, her poetry contains wonderful metaphors and striking language. A joy to absorb.

I love poetry. I’m trying to get in the mindset to write more myself, but it’s so hard to focus because of the thing.

Next, I read Little Fires Everywhere by Celeste Ng, a book I meant to read last year. This book really grabbed me, which is odd because it focuses on topics I normally shun. First, it has a huge emphasis on the mother-child bond, in a kaleidoscope of viewpoints. Second, the story is told from the eyes of teenagers a huge chunk of the time. These days I generally dgaf about the angst of teenagers. You think it’s bad now, kids? Just wait. Third, there’s the familiar trope of boring suburbia, the bad that lurks beneath, and the MPDG who twirls in and shakes everything up.

And yet… the story held me immediately. I needed something exactly like this right now, something so different from what’s happening in the news. Remember when we as a nation were riveted by a stain on a dress? That was the most important thing going on. I find it hard to focus on trivia, but I don’t feel like watching a movie either. I haven’t turned on my TV in days except to exercise to a video (I get the news online).

So anyway. That’s when LFE took place, in the Time of the Blue Dress, around 1997, in a wealthy Ohio suburb. I was riveted by the story; I really wanted to discover what the various characters would do. Their actions seemed surprising at times and yet also inevitable, which I admire in writing. It’s a fine line. You don’t want to be predictable, and yet you want your readers to say… oh, of course. They would have done such a thing. I can totally see it now. And there were so many layers upon layers to each character and the part they played in this drama, that the finished “cake” felt fully earned.

I gave LFE 5 stars despite the fact that Ms. Ng had POV breaks within scenes and lengthy, meandering backstories with POV breaks in those too. That just goes to show you that the story and characters are everything; rules are still important, but they can be broken. I’m not sure why Ms. Ng broke them, but with her credentials you know she knows them. They weren’t mistakes. One critic suggested it’s a cliche to have someone die on an icy road or of a brain tumor. I didn’t cringe when reading them, but I can understand someone not liking those sections.

I can see that same critic’s point about the trope of the MPDG breezing into the small town and turning it upside down while discovering all is not what it seems. I guess there’s also the trope of the naive country bumpkin stumbling into the big city and encountering cynics and meanies. But everything has been done. The key is to bring your own voice and spin. That critic doesn’t believe that Ms. Ng added anything new, but LFE struck me as fresh and engaging.

To each their own! 🙂

~*~

Image from Kriti & Ariel.

©️2020 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted. Please check out Paula’s books for sale on Amazon.

Self-Isolation Report 1

Isolation Bitmoji

Thursday Morning

8:00 ~ cleaned cat box, vacuumed, did laundry, cleaned bathroom, read blogs

9:30 ~ had coffee & an avocado 🥑

10:00 ~ dusted, cleaned kitchen

11:00 ~ exercised to a video

11:30 ~ downloaded phone games

Thursday Afternoon

1:00 ~ played phone games, ate cookies 🍪

5:00 ~ thought about writing, took a walk in Huntington Beach

Huntington Beach Central Park

Thursday Night

7:00 ~ ate instant noodles, made tea, started work

8:00 ~ freaked out about Gov Newsom telling us we can never leave our homes again and began frantically chatting with friends and daughters

11:00 ~ finished work, had more tea

Midnight ~ made this post, feeling too anxious too sleep, glad I still have some Valium

Yah… so just like the olden days when I was all upset about some dumb man, I can’t get my mind in a clear enough state to switch over to the fictional realm. It’s too cluttered with stabby bits of reality and what ifs.

~*~

Images from Bitmoji and me.

©️2020 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted. Please check out Paula’s books for sale on Amazon.