As promised, my smile for this week is the day I spent at the beach with my family.
Look at my awesome sandcastle! It’s so great just to relax and play for a few hours without a thought of politics or other drama. The beach is perfect for this. 😍
My little granddaughter had a good time too, creating her own castle and adding to mine, or smushing it, as the case may be.
And to finish off Fandango’s Dog Days of August super fun prompt series (I didn’t miss any, yay!)… my plans for Septemberinclude spending a lot more time with my precious grands. I also want to work on my novel, take care of my mental and physical health (good food! exercise! sleep!), read more books, etc.
Thanks for a fabulous month of prompts, Fandango! And thank you too, Trent, for nudging us to focus on the positive. 🥰
Malcolm the owl was an energetic young fellow, especially first thing in the morning. He wanted to demonstratehis eloquent speechand share the stupendousideas he had concocted right at the break of dawn. Unfortunately, all the other owls were fast asleep.
After flying over to his friend Zeke’s tree, Malcolm gave Zeke a quick poke with his beak. “I challengeyou to a game of chess and let’s make it 3D!” Malcolm hooted.
Zeke opened one bleary eye and sighed, “Dear owl pal, there is a glitch in your wiring. We are supposed to snooze when the sun is out shining.”
Distressed, Malcolm flew home and played chess with a rabbit. The bunny beat him, so Malcolm ate him. “How I wish Zeke were awake,” Malcolm said with a shake of his head and a burp.
Fandango’s Dog Days prompt today is asking for our favorite season. Well… here is a pic of me from the beach yesterday. I had so much fun! But first let’s talk about the other seasons because each has good qualities.
I used to love autumn best, mainly because of Halloween. But I’m not so into it now. It’s hard for me to get excited about costumes when my eyes are too sensitive for wearing makeup. There are other good things about fall, of course… I am a fan of pumpkin. Pie, coffee, muffins, etc. Noms. Thanksgiving with my family… great! My daughter’s birthday. 💝 Hurtling toward the end of yet another year though… meh. I think about all the stuff I haven’t done, books unwritten, fitness plans abandoned, and my big failure to find a life partner. Not so great.
Winter is yuck. Cold dark depressing days. Wearing layers of sweaters and scarves and boots and corduroys and still freezing everywhere. Yes, in Southern California. There’s just nothing good about it. Except cute sweaters and boots, okay. And the fun NYE party I generally attend (dunno about this year). One bright spot is my youngest daughter’s birthday in March. But I have to deal with Valentine’s Day, which didn’t use to bother me, but kinda does now… 🥶
Spring seems like yayness… flowers, pretty sunsets, Reese’s peanut butter eggs. But it’s also a time of bad memories. My mother died in April. I have to pass through the ghost anniversary of my last marriage. My ex left us in the spring too. Then there’s the crash and burn of my last “relationship,” which shouldn’t bother me because it was so short and stupid, but yet I still find the memories upsetting. He dumped me on Thanksgiving (boo fall). Then I was super down for months (boo winter). And he popped back up in the spring to further torment me via text and email. 💔
But summer? Wheee wonderful! ☀️ Both my grandchildren were born in summer. 💖💙 Long warm days, lovely produce, ice cream, the beach, light clothing, sandals, super fun times with friends. All good! Well, except for the onslaught of migraines at the end. September is my worst month with them. But whatever, summer wins!
Both daughters got married in the summer too. This is from my eldest’s venue. ❤️❤️
Okay, soooo… I love coffee, but only one cup (with whole milk) in the morning. I do like flavored coffee, especially cinnamon, but I’m talking flavored ground beans, NOT gross syrup poured in after. I also like an iced mocha or caramel latte with whipped cream for a treat.
However… I also love tea. My go-to tea is black flavored with orange, plus a blop of whole milk, which I usually drink several times a day, but not right now because hot. I’ve been having plain iced tea a few times a day instead. Not a fan of sugar or lemon in tea, though lime is nice. Plain is perfect.
I’ve started drinking a lot of Bai (coconut water plus fake sugar and sometimes other flavors such as mango or lime). Delicious!
Of course, there’s always old faithful: Diet Coke! Love it. Don’t care for other sodas much, although sparkling water with lime is nice too.
I don’t drink much alcohol these days because migraines, but I love red wine, margaritas, mojitos, mai tais, and Bailey’s, mmm. Bailey’s over ice cream! And I went through my cinnamon whiskey phase, but we won’t talk about that… 🤣
Time slid by like reflections smeared by the rain. Each moment seemed compelling until it was replaced by the next one, like a picture inside a kaleidoscope. She felt as if she were a mere park bench in a painting, observing her own life but not participating in it, still having trouble transitioning to this new way of living, working, being. There were smiles, of course, such as last weekend when she saw her friends again. They watched a movie outdoors, and it was L.A. Story with Steve Martin, which she thought she should like, but it was vaguely disappointing. Her instinctsprotested against all the grabbiness by the various characters, even though it was done in the name of comedy. That’s supposed to excuse a lot of unacceptable behaviors, isn’t it?
Maybe it was her, her habit of craving stability and sameness in a world gone mad. Perhaps it was time to fling off her fears and dive into the chaos, as she had done when younger. But that was a road to nothing ultimately, and while she didn’t have an overwhelming sense of regret for her choices, they hadn’t led to anything great either. But maybe greatness wasn’t the point… maybe a better method would be to appreciate each moment fully before it was washed away in the rains of time bla bla bla. As her favorite quote went: life is short; eat dessert first.
That thought reminded her of one of her favorite books: The Unbearable Lightness of Being. She had read it several times, and it was such a great study in the intricate differences of perspectives. When they cast Daniel Day Lewis as the lead, she’d been pleased. He so perfectly matched the image in her mind of the philandering doctor in the book. The movie itself was good, but it couldn’t live up to the book’s greatness because there was no way to bring in all the crucial nuances of the narrative.
The Glass Castle, on the other hand, had disappointed her with the lead. This was one of her favorite books and yet Brie Larson as Jeannette didn’t feel right at all. There was something off about her voice, tone, and looks. She’d never envisioned J as an adult Manhattan snob the way she was portrayed by Brie. There was a strong undercurrent of angst and loss in the book’s Jeannette, not this smoothly perfect adult. However, Woody Harrelson as the raging alcoholic father was a perfect fit. She decided that casting was an onerous task and she would certainly find it tough. There were so many factors to consider.
In any case, she had a family beach day to look forward to tomorrow, which would probably end up as next week’s smile. But how was it possible that over half a year had passed in this strange limbo? She didn’t want to spout cliches, but she had the eerie sense that the ending was rushing toward her like an out of control semi-truck on a slippery downhill slope. Or perhaps it would be a warm gentle fog of nothingness as the colors all blended into one…
Fandango’s Dog Days prompt today asks us to thank our followers/readers, so here ya go! Thanks! I really appreciate all y’all and, as I said yesterday, interaction is my main motivation for blogging, so keep it coming.
On another note, I have been reading more and more that bloggers are very upset with the changes in WordPress. While the block editor doesn’t bug me, I do feel your pain. Why change things that are working? Why make the process inconvenient for peeps? It just doesn’t make sense. Focusing only on business bloggers is going to backfire on WP, imo. There are still a lot of hobbyists and some of us pay. The ones who don’t still provide a platform for advertisers, who pay. This forced annoyance is pretty misguided imo. 🙁
Blogger dot com still exists however. Some of my friends never liked WP and are still there. I have a blogger blog still up that I haven’t been using (deleted the old content) and would have no problem cycling back to. The navigation is pretty simple and a blog is easy to set up… all you need is a google account.
The one thing I’m unsure about is if they have a feed similar to WP. I would think one should exist somewhere. If not, we can use blogrolls or a separate feed reader, such as Feedspot. It’s all good. 🙂
Let me know your thoughts on continuing this thing we do! 😻
Okay, so I had a bit of a life and missed the weekend Dog Days. I hope this isn’t why Fandango is thinking of taking a hiatus. I’M SORRY EVERYONE! It’s all my fault. 😢
First, let me tell you why writing matters to me (FDDA22). It’s because via writing I get to hang out with cool characters like the aforementioned Fandango. We’d never have “met” any other way, and even if I’d run into him accidentally, we wouldn’t be sharing our thoughts the way we do here, in writing. And the same goes for the rest of y’all I’ve been chilling with in Blogland and even before on Usenet and in other venues. Sure, it’s fun to dabble in fiction and poetry too, but the main reason I stick with writing in a blog, as opposed to tweets and FB updates, is due to the interaction.
Second, I truly enjoy creating characters (FDDA23), and when I write I am my own creation. Not that I am lying (necessarily!) when I post, but I can tune the mood and make happenings sound more dramatic or interesting. I play with words and tone and pacing. Do I want to assume the persona of a loving grandmother or a snarky beyotch? Would I rather appear awkwardly funny or smoothly competent? It’s easy to switch characters when I blog and still maintain credibility. Not so easy in real life, where I prefer to stay consistent.
Third, speaking of characters, here’s a fun fact about me. Back when I was dating (barf), I sometimes created… interesting characters in certain situations. Forex, I was in a long-term penpal relationship with a married man who told me we could never meet. I accepted that. To keep things exciting, I occasionally created a character (did both a man and a woman) to entice someone into cybersex. Then I would copy and paste the transcript into an email for my friend. For all I know, the person I was cybering with was a character too! That’s what made it more fun though, the not knowing.
I hope this admission hasn’t swayed your opinion of me. I’ve always said I preferred fiction to non. 🙂
I try not to be constantly enraged, but it’s hard. I get so frustratedwhen things don’t work properly or when companies give crappy or nonexistent service. While I like to think of myself as calm and logical, the truth is I am very prone to anger. This is something I struggle with because I don’t want my peace of mind to be controlled by the tyranny of the marketplace. Yet, being high-strung is part of my nature and helps my creativity flow…
I’m never in a great mood, though I can have great times with family or friends. Yet, I’m always aware of pain… there’s not one second when something doesn’t hurt. I wish I could be oblivious to this, but I’m not, and maybe that’s why it takes so little to wreck my day. Except I’ve always been this way! Although I can barely remember a time when I wasn’t plagued by pain, I do know that even as a teenager I was on edge, easily triggered into anger or tears, same as now. I feel so much, including what people I care about are feeling…
But I’m also silly and funny/fun. It takes so little to make me happy. A cat being cute. A yummy cookie. A witty play on words. A riveting suspense film or book. Pictures of my grandkids… 🤩💖 I like that I have low expectations and don’t need huge thrills or expensive events to decide that life is worthwhile. I mean, I can be completely pissed off about some irritating glitch, but if I get to have a Snickers bar,everything is fantastic..
I would say I’m on the aloofside of the introvert/extrovert chart, though this is hard to classify. I’m fine around people, chatty and not awkward (usually), but I have my limits. After X amount of time, I am DONE and need to be alone to recharge. I’m okay being alone for vast amounts of time too… though I will get sad if I go too long without seeing my daughters. Before Covid-19, I had to make sure not to over-schedule social occasions, since that’s super draining emotionally for me. Even now, it’s hard for me to deal with all these Zoom mixers people want to do. Excessive audio stimulation makes me nuts. Needless to say, I’m not listening to the convention…
I’ll admit to not feeling much inclined to help strangers or be generous with my resources including time. I learned the hard way that most people who demand things from me without offering anything in return are never grateful but will just ask for more. I am not a trusting person, though I admire and respect those who are and who do act selflessly…