First iMovie on the New YouTube Channel

Well, it was another labor of love, this iMovie! I’m going to have to start tracking the hours. I worked on it every day of this 4 day weekend. Not all day long but a few hours each day.

Since life happens so fast and I am only capturing bits and pieces of it, the media (pics and videos) I have had to work with was minimal. So piecing it together is interesting. But I enjoy it. There were some clips where it was hard to get the audio consistent no matter how hard I tried.

I wanted to show pieces of the pandemic and the issues with Maisy and the washer going out, and George’s good cooking saves the day!

So much improvement to be had but I look forward to continuing to learn:

To film, to tell a story, to provide value and not just entertainment. I’m already looking forward to the next one. They will always be behind the blog though.

So I’m going to take a break this week and work on getting ready for the June shower – need to gather items and order items and such. I will work on knocking some OTHER things off my list besides creating movies. lol

So I DID go ahead and create a NEW channel with a new email and I created a new Twitter account and a new instagram account. So over time I will build those up and also I will connect everything here. I also need to add some other things to the blog as well.

My first goal is to get 100 subscribers. That is when I get my own YouTube URL where it makes it searchable. So if you like it at all, please SUBSCRIBE! And give me a thumbs up on the video.

I’ll be ordering a gimbal or some kind of selfie stick thing so I can film better from a distance. And probably need to invest in one of those little iphone microphones. I have already decided that I will be buying myself a Cannon EOS camera. I have the stimulus money and blow money already saved up to do it now. But I’m not allowing myself to do it yet. I want it to be a reward for reaching milestones. I’ve not decided how many subscribers that will be but – I’ll decide as I map and plan. And then I want to get out and use it. Which means I’ll need that raccoon looking thing they have on top to block out wind and probably some other tools. And we’ll need to be able to get out and explore. I’m looking forward to all of it.

Here is the video! Don’t forget to subscribe if you like it at all and give me a thumbs up. Thank you Thank you.

It’s me in Vlog form for sure.

I learned how to do Thumbnails through Canva. I need to go in Paint Shop Pro and make my logo round so the square background is not there.

Anyway, off to work we go after a beautiful 4 day weekend. And I have a lot to do in a short work week. Minus a day to get PR done.

Take care! See you in a couple of days!

Best Lasagna I Ever Made and My iMovie Processes

While taking Roger out yesterday, I noticed how pretty the lavender had become. I love it. It has been a great thing to plant in the flower bed and it comes back every year. I think that might be thyme behind it. I depend on George to remind me of which herbs are which.

He has worked very hard in the yard. And the house looks good amidst the tree limbs there. That tree was not very big back in 2008 when we moved in. It provides a lot of shade now. I can remember in the hot part of August trying to stand in the small shady spot and now it overtakes the yard and in mid- day instead of late afternoon. It’s really nice.

The day went by so fast. This whole weekend has. My main task for yesterday, besides getting the lasagna made, was to catch up on the ironing. I did that. I ironed I don’t know how many pants – maybe 8? I washed several loads of laundry also as we had our swim suits and towels that we added to the mix and a load of whites to do.

So I had on my list a while back, to make lasagna. It was on my new year’s list. We had such good lasagna at Aunt Gwen’s and then also at Judy’s. And so I decided that I wanted to make it myself. As a girl who has always loved pasta, I can’t believe I never have. It was always something as a teen, that we gals would get excited when someone was making it. It was always “this big thing”. Even today, people will tell you how much trouble it is. So all my life, loving spaghetti as I do, and those long strands of goodness, I just always stuck to that.

George has been mentioning it recently, and I watched a You Tuber make it. And the trick to it not taking so long is to make it in 2 sections. It seemed much easier than a lot of other dishes I’ve attempted to make. But I have to say it’s the best lasagna I’ve ever made. I’ve never made one before, ha!

Pretty much the meat sauce was easy and as normal – kinda like a spaghetti sauce. I followed their instructions though and they used a few different spices than I normally do – like fennel seed and parsley.

Any Italian sauce is recommended to have two meats. I learned that from Restaurant Impossible. So we had ground beef (from the cow we bought) and we had a country sausage (from the pig we bought.)

George had me add a rub to the sausage that made it “Italian sausage”. I couldn’t tell you what was in it. I’d have to ask him. He’s not in the room, lol.

The meat and seasonings had to cook for an hour and half. And then I went ahead and made the cream sauce, which was an egg, Ricotta cheese, parmesan cheese. With fresh parsley added in. I think that was it. I’m trying to recall from memory.

Here is the link:

Then I boiled the noodles up for 8 minutes and ran cold water over them so they would stop cooking.

So we had our Happy Hour Zoom call with friends – in which we kept losing our connection (one time it was their laptop that died though) and we had to switch to Face Time. I can never seem to stay connected on Zoom though. Grr. We did not have a problem with Face Time I noted.

After the call I went and layered up the lasagna while the stove preheated. It was fun! I loved making this. I loved layering it in. You layer in your sliced mozarella. I loved that we bought the kind already sliced. I still pinched apart some though to spread it out across the layers more evenly. It baked 25 min with the foil on and 25 with the foil off.

George said it was really good and if “the house chef” says it’s good, that is a good thing.

George made a wedge salad with fresh made ranch dressing. I love that stuff.

He also made green beans.

I began videoing a few things yesterday for the “next” video. This is just crazy.

I also worked hard on the audio for the video this weekend, a chunk of it done yesterday and I’m almost finished. Gosh I lose time when I am working on these videos. I enjoy this process so much.

Some of my “missing files” in iMovie came back. My sound effects. I wish my music would come back. Once this last video is done, I’ll try to see if I can delete and download. I think I read it was $15? But if it recognizes me it will know I have an account and maybe let me have it. I could contact Apple I guess. I think somehow I deleted the files that came with iMovie when I deleted my own media files from the last project. Geez. I selected “All” and I only meant for it to select the files from my project. I didn’t know it was selecting all files from iMovie. Such a learning curve.

I’m realizing very quickly how hard this is going to be to do it the right way to grow the channel. But after my post yesterday. I’m not going to push myself. That takes the fun out of it. I’m going to create the channel. I will work on it and publish to it. I will learn and dabble and play. And at some point it will become a natural process and I’ll be in a better position to commit to a schedule. If I were to commit to one now it would be 1 video per month. lol. Plus I’m doing fairly complicated videos b/c I’m trying to piece chunks of time together to tell a story and much of it all just non related. I mean going from COVID to new toilet to family visiting, to dinner. There was a lot to cram in and “piece together”. I should have it finished today. If not sometime this week. I need to begin logging my hours on it.

But the process I use of creating an iMovie is something like this:

  • Pulling in the photos and videos to a file on iMac from my photos (shared b/w phone and imac)
  • Pulling in that said file into iMovie
  • Adding the photos and videos into the timeline in the order that I think I will use it.
  • Going through each video clip and clipping out what I don’t want in there.
  • Going through each photo and selecting how I want it to be. Either selecting it to fill the screen or using Ken Burns which makes the photo move. I adjust the “Beginning and End” to the movement so it floats over the right spots.
  • Add in overlays such as titles, text, logos, pictures, pictures within a picture, or a picture that comes in while the video is playing.
  • There are options for using graphics with a transparent background so it shows over the pic also. Have to go outside of iMovie for that.
  • Picking out the music. I seem to use 3 or for songs in mine. I’m not sure if that is normal, but I don’t use the whole songs – just clips of it – usually the beginning.
  • Adding in the music to the timeline.
  • The whole time I’m working with the audio to make sure the clips sound constant at the same levels so those who are watching do not have to turn up and down the volume while they watch. I’m splitting audio clips in order to make some of the music go down lower while we are talking. Sometimes I’m finding these are hard to do.
  • Then I do a final run through and still make tons of changes.
  • Then I do the upload to my iMac and cross fingers.
  • Then I replay it after the upload b/c sometimes files get damaged or the sound ends up being different and I have to go back in and adjust.
  • Then I upload it to YouTube
  • Then I upload it to the blog
  • Then I upload it to the Facebook Group for Less Hustle More Coffee

So…it is quite the process. But I’ve fallen in love with it. I want to do the Next one in Movavi! I DID look at creating Thumbnails. Of course if you don’t create one they will do it for you. (YouTube will). But when you post all the time it’s recommending that you do your own and have consistent font and such. That’s for another day. For the future. I don’t want to get any more overwhelmed. But when I post on a schedule, that will be a good idea. Right now, I just have to have fun with it. Not pushing myself!

I thought about things yesterday and I do have some topics that I can focus on to grow the channel when I’m ready to do so. As I go about the house I can see some things that I would love to talk about. Mainly related to:

Decorating on a budget, setting up a home office space, how to get organized, time management tips, ways to chill out when you are stressed, new apps I like. These are all the things I blog about just not in bullet form. So I will figure this thing out and it’ll be fun. The whole thing is to be fun, but…to have some goals with it. I like to reach goals. I think that is why I have a to do list. It makes me feel I’m worthwhile. 😉 I had been stuck on the niche thing because I’m all over the place on this blog. I will call it a reality lifestyle blog and then mention in the description that I share (the above things I mention). I’ll put those as key words in the description and tags of the YouTube set up. You do this in your settings when describing your channel.

Anyway, once I get the video finished I will start working on setting up the new channel.

Ahhh these weekends go by too fast. Dang it. I can’t believe it’s Monday already. But alas, it’s only a 4 day weeker – a busy one too as I prep for the Holiday payroll the following week and it’s a month end pay date coming up which means that beginning Wednesday I will start paying off the taxes for those that are monthly paid. So a very busy week.

And I’ll end here so I can get a few things done in the house and get this iMovie done. And if it all works out this week I can finally begin to knock some things off my list. I’ve been avoiding the to do list while working on the iMovies. Also feel like I’m shirking my responsibilities because I love the editing process so much, that I often even forget to eat. I do eventually go find crackers to munch on. But I could lose weight doing it, lol.

Ya’ll have a wonderful Memorial Day. And I am thinking of those that fought to protect us today and served. Thank the Lord for such a beautiful weekend. Now I’ve got to check and see how Katy’s ranch cat “Ford” is doing.

Now that Memorial Day is here, for us in the South. Summer has officially arrived. And the heat will begin with it.

And I kinda have an itch to get out and do some things. Do you? What you gonna do this summer?

Pool Party and Defining my Niche in Vlogging

Well, it just seems like the numbers of the virus are not growing fast in our county. I guess that is why everyone is free to go back to partial openings – usually in 2nd phases in Tennessee. We will see how it does in a couple of weeks as everyone kinda gets back to society.

We really really really enjoyed time with our friends yesterday. It was so good to see them. There were six of us. We ate together, swam together, and yes we gave each other hugs.

Here is Mr. Stud Muffin right here. We all enjoyed our pool time / chat time.

They have a lovely place and a salt water pool. We sat on the screened in patio some too. Very nice. It was a perfect day for a cook out / pool party.

The cheese burgers were great and we had potato salad, slaw, baked beans (we took those), chips and dip, bread and spinach dip. We had whoopi pie for dessert as well as a lemoncello cake. All so good.

Judy made some dreamcicle margarita drinks. I just had a little of that as I had a glass of wine. But we ate, talked, caught up and had a really good time.

We left about 9:15 and I was ready for bed since I get up so early. We got home and I was in bed by 10:01. lol

So, yesterday before we left for the party, and after doing laundry, I did some viewing of YouTube videos on creating a YouTube channel. I allowed myself to just do whatever I wanted yesterday without specific focus. I was wanting to go ahead and create my channel and get it started. So I wanted to check out videos to kinda guide me through some of it.

One video leads to another and so forth. It’s all so intriguing to me and I’m like a sponge soaking it all in. It gets to be overwhelming quickly – the legal parts, the details of what to do and what not to do, how the algorithms work and how to market yourself and all of that if you want to grow your channel. I want people to like it and so that interests me too. But it got me thinking – probably a little too much. Like anything else, you have to think of it like a business, you have to crank out the videos on pretty much a weekly schedule, and you need to be able to provide VALUE for people to want to subscribe. LOL LOL. So I began thinking about all that and it really kinda made me laugh at first and then kinda made me sad.

Does my blog bring value? It’s just me spilling over whatever it is I need to say, and what we did the day before and sharing our life to who ever wants to read. So if I bring the blog to life in a vlog – how does that bring value? lol Oh dear.

I’ve always really just wanted to have a format in which I just say what I want. I don’t usually have a formal format of “Here’s 5 reasons you should BLAH BLAH BLAH”. I don’t usually give advice in my blogs, I just share my life. And that is probably not interesting enough to bring in new subscribers. But who knows? Maybe I can bring some kind of entertainment value. haaaaa. I think that is what makes me laugh. So what made me sad is that I realized if I don’t vlog in a certain way there may not be any subscribers. And if I don’t put out a video on a regular schedule, they will not stay, according to those with successful channels. I’m not so worried about monetizing the thing but if it grows, I’m not going to turn it down. And then there are milestones and rewards and such just like anything (goals to set in YouTube), which I will want to go for if I do this. For example even with 100 subscribers you get your own URL with a name instead of a number code and people can find you easier. So then I thought – well, COULD I begin adding some things that bring value? I’m sorry this makes me laugh every time I write it. lol I’m not used to thinking in terms of bringing value, to telling about what happened yesterday, lol. Heck, I’m entertaining myself here. But one video suggested that before I even begin, I should have 12 topics ready to go for the next 12 videos. So…….that’s just weird when you are reality blogger. And I have to have a niche. It can be about 3 things really. Enough to let them know who you are and what you normally bring to the table.

So what value have I brought to you guys?

Maybe I need to understand why my readers are here? What value does this blog bring to you? What do you want to see more of?

It has been suggested that you can still vlog but in the beginning or along side of – you need to bring some value. This still makes me laugh when I say it because it really trying to turn my blog into a vlog and into a business of sorts. That’s really what the videos on YouTube were calling successful. It’s a business. Is that what I really want? I mean I think it would be nice at retirement to have the extra income if it turned out that way. By then we’d get to travel more.

So I’m trying to think through here what value this blog brings to anyone other than for me to spill forth my thoughts about yesterday and share what happened.

I’ve heard that someone reads because she is interested in the Nashville area. Well that’s a biggie right there. We are usually out and about more. I will have Nashville area blogger in my description. And would eventually change it to vlogger as my format changed more toward vlogging formats and less of blogging formats. I can’t see how I could possibly keep both blog and vlog going in as detailed of a fashion like it is- another feature about this that makes me sad. The more public it becomes the less personal I can be also. And that makes me question if I’d be losing the reason I blog/vlog in the first place.

So yes, I’m having an identity crises through this thing. I’m in the midst of deciding what is important to me now and what is important as I morph and change. I also know part of the growth and change is to be flexible. I also have to get used to filming myself – at least in some scenes. I also don’t like the way I look in them. So I have to figure out how to look interesting on the camera. I know it’s within me to do so, but it’s something that will be a trial and error kind of thing. Hair, makeup, accessories – something that pops! So this is all scary and exciting. And it’s almost making me want to back out, but I enjoy the making of the videos, and I see others doing it, and I know in my heart it is something I want to do. And I am up for the challenge! I’m almost afraid for it to be successful. What if people do subscribe – I’ll be scared to death. Ahhhhhh.

So yeah….I am trying to decide what VALUE this type of scenario could bring to the YouTube world. What would my niche be that I would describe in the description?

I have organization skills and household skills. I have management/business skills. I do not want to make it a business blog!! I want it to be open to all sorts of things. There may be days I DO want to talk about business. So I think one of my niche description will be a “Reality Blogger”. I have to also emphasize down time and coffee as that is in the title and that is what I love. I guess I have life skills. I could turn certain things I do and discover into a “how to” or a “here’s something to think about” or “5 ways to ____”. I also get excited about new apps, new products I find, and of course I’m sure hubby George can entertain us some in the kitchen. But I’m not really an expert at anything. So who am I to offer anyone advice? lol. I did think of one vlog that would be fun to do. Taking you into my kitchen and saying “Here’s examples of how to decorate your kitchen on a budget”. Lights, greenery, decorating with books, and there is that calendar of Greece that I had framed, and our bucket list. See I would enjoy that kind of thing. I could also do a video about placing greenery around the home – and show what a difference it makes. But I don’t want to go down a certain path. It may be a home video one day and we may be out trying new cuisine the next. I think I can make it work? What do you think?

So while I thought I’d be setting up a YouTube Channel this weekend, maybe I just need to think on it some more. I could use your help. If I can add a few things in that actually “bring value” I could grow the channel alongside my vlogging which I fully intend to do. I’m also trying to figure out what my vlog style is going to be. There is one person that does an informational video and a vlog video on the same channel. Business and personal. She does two a week. She also makes this her full time job as she became successful in it and had to quit her FT job. I’m not saying I am trying to go that route. It would not be something that is a consistent form of income IF it did get subscribers. On the other hand, retirement is just 5 years down the road.

I realize a lot of this stuff is going to just take time and morph into whatever it will be. I think for the most part I just need to stay true to who I am, need to just keep going in the direction I’m going with learning the vlog scene. I can heed the advice given and try to work in their advice here and there. I want it to be fun and a hobby and not a chore. So I have to remember that. I don’t want to burn myself out. So I guess I will just do what I know to do and try to do the best I can with it. Right now life is not too interesting to blog or vlog about, lol.

What value do you get from this blog?

Why do you return?

What would you like to see more of?

By knowing that I’ll have a better idea of the wording to use for my “niche”. So I appreciate your help. This is all blowing my mind right now, a little bit.

I really just want to have fun with it…but I also want it to be successful. It’s kinda scary.

I’ll be adding songs to the video I’m working on today. And I realize I’m going to have to be more simple with some of the videos. The 30 minutes to try and cut down to 15 or so, is not easy.

Well, that’s it for today. I’m going to work on the laundry, ironing, and make lasagna today. I’ve been bad and have not been doing many videos of the week either, but it’s ok. I’ve not really shoved the boat off in this direction, I’ve not set a schedule yet, and I’m just dabbling at this point trying to figure out what this will all look like. Oh and I spent a long time working on my intro but I was told it can’t be more than so many seconds. So I need to work on that. But I’ll probably wait til the NEXT video. lol

OK over and out. More tomorrow. I truly hope to get some things off my list in the next couple of days. I love working on the blog/vlog stuff.

Am I hearing sighs from the spouse at my being in here in my office so much? I’ve heard a few but not sure if it’s me or something else? He told me “I’ll see you in June” when he gave me my iMac at Christmas. He knows me well. Oh, and if this keeps up I’ll be buying a new camera with my money from the government. lol. I’ve always wanted a really nice one but I think we’ll reach some goals first. I kinda want to reach some milestones. I also need to learn how to use the drone. But I’m scared. I wish George would do that part and just give me the video. ha. I’m afraid I’ll crash the thing.

Oh well, over and out.

New Washing Machine, Rainbow, and Why I Think I Need More Compassion

One thing I love about the Nest Cam is being able to see when people arrive and go. I was like a little kid waiting to go to the pool or something. I kept waiting for the “ding” notice tapping my apple watch to let me know “Someone is at the door”. I quickly grabbed the phone to see the Lowe’s truck in the driveway and the driver being curious and sticking his head in Little Bit’s styrofoam house on the front porch to see if anything was in there. Made me laugh. I was already jumping for joy.

They hauled the old one out and brought the new one in.

George said the guy said “ya’ll sure do like supplements” as he saw all my Isagenix items on the shelf. It probably could have been neater but I’m into various boxes and they tumble around.

She’s a beauty. I just love the glass top – I guess it’s glass. It is a very thick one if it is. Might be some other materials but I like that it’s see through. I’m loving the controls also. And I’ve discovered that it has a bigger tub than the last one. I would have had to wash two loads of darks but it all fit in one. I was shocked.

I think they cycles are quicker than the last one. Or maybe since I was home, time was just going by fast.

I’ve asked God to show me some wonders when He can during our busy days so I know He’s there. I guess I was thinking in forms of deer, red birds and such. He did send those too but I looked out as I was packing up Thursday and saw the most beautiful big rainbow, reminding us of His promises.

I also got out for lunch on Thursday and drove to a Taco Bell. I had a gift card with $9 on it and I bought a steak taco with avocado ranch sauce and bean burrito. mmmmm it was great. I’ve missed it.

So here’s what the Baby Bingo looks like. Someone was curious. We have 3 different cards. There are 50 people invited to the shower. But mainly it’ll be whoever notices and yells Bingo first. Too much trouble to do 50 different cards, lol. I need to go and get little gifts to send to Ellen to open after the winner is declared in the games. I think we need one other game. I need to look at my notes and see if we have already established one. Katy and I had a meeting on this and I took notes. My memory is not so good anymore. It’s time for the next step of preparedness for the shower – finalizing games, decor, food. It’s virtual but we’ll still be sending things to Ellen to her house and will send a cake for her and her family to enjoy.

Katy made the bingo cards. And I had to have them early so I could send them with the invitations.

I’m happy to say that the invitations are finished and George took them to the Post Office when he went on another errand yesterday to find a certain type of baked beans.

So I had set up camp in the sun room. It was a perfect morning to open the screens and enjoy the trees and breeze. But rain was coming so I knew the sun room people would not be coming to finish the project on the roof, as they had not been there the other days rain was coming.

About the time I got in my groove doing the invites, George got a call and he came in and informed me the sun roof people were on the way to do part of the project and they would be coming in behind me (outside) to go up on the roof and do part of the project. He didn’t want me to be alarmed. So they did and it was loud and pounding and scared me a bit as I thought “what if the roof collapsed”, lol. They were walking above me. It also alarmed Maisy and she also saw me be alarmed so she went into a coughing fit of excitement and went and hid behind the couch in the den and wouldn’t come out.

So then I came in here in the office and began working on my video. I also worked on it after the invitations were through. I’m making great progress with it. It’s like a puzzle. The fun part is creating something out of almost nothing and trying to tell a story with it.

And this week I’ve not video’d much for the following one. Doing these videos are a FT job and I don’t have time to do this every week. But maybe once a month or so if that. Not much happens in a week’s time that is news worthy of videoing – but we’ll see as I try to figure out ways to bring the blog alive into a vlog. There is also the problem of not being in the mood to video or photo every little thing. Some days it is a time issue. I’m most likely to photo and video when I’m relaxed. Work days are harder. Those nights I come home and just really want to chill and not think about much. But it’ll all work out. I will figure a rhythm on it. I enjoy it too much not to. It’s just like anything else. I have to get around the learning curve still and I have still not had time to set up the YouTube channel and such. But it’s fun and I look forward to the whole shebang. Hopefully it’ll get easier and less time consuming. But the videos will always be time consuming if you do them right, I’m hearing.

Oh I forgot to say that as the man climbed the ladder behind where I sat he began laughing when he looked in the window. He was the only one out there. I guess he saw me and saw the pants drying in the window which I complete forgot about. lol lol lol I turned and waved and then went and found another spot for the pants to dry, embarrassed. But we ran out of room to hang clothes in the laundry room. I do not dry most of my clothes in the dryer. I hang dry them and they last forever. It does require more ironing though. If you look hard you can see them here – those pants, lol.

So I had to quit doing laundry yesterday because so many clothes were hanging about. But I have our clothes mostly done now. Changed sheets on the bed yesterday so washing those now and the rest to catch up on are some quilts and dog blankets. We’ve washed and folded and so much accomplished on my day off yesterday.

I fell asleep last night watching a royal documentary. George always wakes me up so I can watch it or he’ll ask me if I want him to stop it. I can’t help it but when I get up so early, after we eat, I get relaxed and slip off into slumber. Usually after about 8:30.

But that royal documentary didn’t help any. It was really boring. lol. It was like history class with it’s black and white photos and a documentary tone.

Anyway was happy with yesterday. Just a perfect day of both accomplishing things and enjoying things. I even got to watch two of my You Tube show favorites.

And I’m off to the 2nd cup of coffee. And plans for the day? I want to make some progress toward my list, working on the new YouTube channel and see how that is going to go. I will do a bit of house work. And we will be going to see friends today for a mini pool party with just a few couples. Good friends who have not seen each other since maybe January? Might have been Christmas but I think we did LCR game in January and had lasagna at Paul and Judy’s.

Oh and I had talked of making my own lasagna after having Aunt Gwen’s at Christmas and Judy’s in January. As much as I love pasta, I cannot believe I’ve not made it yet. George has asked if I want to make it several times. So I decided to make it. I’m making it Sunday. And was happy to have found Whole Grain pasta which will be a little bit better than the other.

I also just put on my list to make chicken spaghetti sometime. Granny had a great recipe that Katy made a lot. I will find it and make it some weekend.

Well, I’m going to get that other cup of coffee. But please tell me what you all have planned for the weekend. Are you having family over? Going anywhere? Nashville is open 75%, even the bars are partially open now. We are not going to Nashville. Around here we have very few cases in suburbia. So we have ventured to eat out as you saw in a previous post. These will be few and far between. But maybe once every couple of weeks as we feel safe. I have not had huge appetites since the diverticulitis attack first began earlier in the year. I mainly eat because I can feel the impact of hunger – mostly a tired feeling instead of being hungry. So when I do get a craving, I allow myself to have it. My cravings have been (usually a one time craving): Taco Bell, bologna sandwich, eggs, sweet potato, steak, pizza, and of all things chili fritos. I really don’t have cravings like I used to and my appetite has waned quite a bit. So I attend to the craving and allow it when it happens. Most of the time I’m just eating what is available. Except I’m sick of frozen food for lunch to take to work. By night fall, I really enjoy the comfort that George’s meals bring. They remind me that food is good. And then I want a cookie. lol. Which is a new thing for me b/c I was never into cookies before.

So I cannot quit typing for some reason. OH and of course, I promised Mona I would type about why I think I’m not compassionate. Mona said she has read my blog for years and thinks otherwise. So I must keep my promise and let me go get that 2nd cup of coffee so I can get my second blog wind going.

Reasons I think my Compassion Needs Work:

  • I know that I’m wired to be more task oriented than people oriented therefore making me automatic to avoid people and go straight to tasking.
  • I am very detail oriented also in those tasks that take me away from being detailed with people themselves. The devil is in the details they say and quite literally a time suck keeping me away from attending to people. Any little thing to anyone else when mentioned to me to put on my to do list, nearly sends me over the edge b/c I see the devil in the details – oh too well.
  • People around me think I ignore them. I totally don’t mean to, I just have tunnel vision. I remember a boy I grew up with in church when we were 16 told me it was nice to get to know me better. I said “And you as well, why didn’t we ever talk growing up”. He said “I always thought you didn’t like me. You never seemed to notice me or talk to me.” I told him “No I think I was just shy”. He said he thought I was “stuck up” which was the phrase we used back then for someone thinking they were better than another. I think it was the first time I realized I must come across as unfriendly or uncaring or unapproachable. I was simply just probably hurrying off to my seat or a thousand details going off in my head. Not trying to be unfriendly just “in my own world”. I could have had a really good friend growing up but we misunderstood each other as people. Had I had more compassion over the people around me would that have changed?
  • I was once told as a teen that I “treated my sister like a dog”. It always had such great impact on me. That one sentence. I hadn’t intended to ignore her or speak to her badly. Didn’t know I had. I’m sure I was following the role models set before me. I was trying to keep her from playing in my makeup and taking off my things. I gave demands and directives. I didn’t want her drinking out of my glass and so forth. I didn’t mean to be rude, but was just being protective of my things and setting boundaries even way back then! lol. She was always in my stuff. But it always made me feel bad being told that. It wasn’t my intention and made a big impression on me that I could be seen or come across as such. Had I had more compassion I could have been a more loving sister and daughter?
  • Various people – including my own spouse – have made comments about me not being a good mother. This has truly hurt my feelings more than you can imagine. I can’t imagine where it’s coming from as the love in my heart for my daughter couldn’t have been any bigger and my fierce worry and protection over her, I couldn’t see how that could have been any bigger either. No one has ever been specific other than to say it was mainly a “quality time problem”. So I figured it is probably the same thing. Working on tasks and the things I thought I needed to do and was supposed to do while working FT and having a family too. I spent a lot of time trying to make the house right, working so we have $ to pay for things we need – in a career too that I loved at the time and not a job as I wanted to “have it all”‘ I was told I couldn’t have it all but I was determined to prove otherwise (and did sortof prove that for the most part). I was also trying to do “my list” that I guess maybe I didn’t “do enough” that various people thought I should have. I also tried to relax with books – but more than anything loved to blog and have an outlet to express myself in ways I couldn’t with other people. It led to my love of making graphics and taking photos and other things. Others took a back seat I guess in my need to expel or tell of whatever it was I needed to tell through writing every day. I guess I ignored family in an effort to remain sane. I don’t fault myself for this in any grand way. It was my savior. I’d have lost it if I had not been able to do that. I feel that mainly it was people not understanding me or understanding that I have needs too. But I imagine if I’d had more compassion I’d have been more giving with my time to those around me. I think I would have if I had understood they wanted more of me. I didn’t get that impression at the time. A lot of time I felt unwanted myself and misunderstood and it would drive me further into worlds that accepted me for who I was, like the blog community and people at work. I did the best I could do parenting and having family while being me. But if it wasn’t acceptable to some, I must have failed in some way. But it’s ok. I can assure you with every part of my being that others have also failed me, perhaps even in bigger ways. I quite imagine I’ve been misjudged all along in my life. But I do know that I am very task oriented and with my love to write – that probably led me to be selfish with my time – even though I didn’t realize I was being that way. All that said, I think Katy turned out to be great. So whatever role I played must have been just right. lol She’s pretty darn perfect in my eyes.
  • Others have always been more worried about peoples needs than I have been. While I worry more about the tasks at hand. I do realize though that I’m wired that way and that God needs those types of people too. I’m the Martha and not the Mary. But still the Mary’s God prefers right? So there’s work to be done to be able to walk away from a “to do list” to Hear the Word, or Help a Body with something versus doing a mile long To Do list. That is what I struggle with. The guy next door never got his sympathy card after losing his wife. I bought it. We signed it. And then I didn’t wanted to go by myself to take it. I thought I might take it with a casserole. One I never found time to make. The card was never sent or delivered. I couldn’t break away from my lists, my todo’s, long enough to do that. I intended to. I just never happened and now I feel bad. I have all kinds of excuses but had I just gotten out of my comfort zone and did it? I allowed my desires at getting my own list done to take precedence. I feel bad about that every time I see them. I wasn’t there for them. Then I was sick the day of the funeral. How it must look to them.
  • I’m an introvert not an extrovert. So it takes me out of my comfort zone to deal with things that cause me to have to break away from my world. There are times that God expects me to do better! Or I will find myself in the belly of a whale like Jonah.
  • In the career of HR that I was in, being around the various types of people further pushed me into being more introverted as I began seeing and mistrusting so many kinds of people. I grew tired of complaints and egos and attitudes and opinions and political moves and and and and and….I just flat grew tired of people. Sooooooooo tired of people. It wore me out! But it was good for me in a way because then I began to learn about boundaries and being good enough and not feeling battered, moved, and bullied by others who were set to have their way as I was mine. And eventually I left that world for a quieter world that was better suited for my persona. It’s no one’s fault really. I picked a career that was one thing 38 years ago when I was in college, that grew to be something else entirely from what was intended. I am not a lawyer, didn’t have a magic wand to my name and didn’t have the desire to move mountains, nor the compassion to even want to try to accomplish the ever growing and endless lists of expectations that had built up through the years. My persona was done trying to be everyone’s everything. I’ve often wondered if I’d had more compassion would it have been different. But all in all I don’t really think so – because you can’t win in those situations and you can’t possibly cater to every need. I was tired of trying. So maybe that one is not a good example. But I probably gave up trying and began working more on the things I could control b/c I just didn’t have the patience with people and their continued everlasting demands. I’d have had to have been some type of deity to continue doing this career with the fierce determination and drive that I had over getting all the details done on top of meeting everyone’s everything. So I was done. And happy to be done. Relieved every day. But if I’d had more compassion and empathy it might have been better? Not sure. It might have made me crazier, lol. If I could have ignored the tasks and spent more time on the people – the other side would have failed. Since leaving I’ve been told by at least one – how good the details and records were. Yeah, this one is not a good example of how compassion could have helped. But – overall, I do still in some way feel I could have had more compassion if I’d looked up long enough from the tasks.
  • When I look at my Dad and the compassion he had for others and in his righteousness. He had such great compassion over the “lost soul”. I feel horrible guilt at not having that same passion. I just don’t have that desire but God commands that we do. I don’t have the desire to go and find that lost soul like he did, to teach like he did. All I see is arguments and attitudes over religion, people getting caught up in the details and correcting everything you say, and I detest having to deal with it. I tire quickly and retreat with this kin of thing. I’ve dealt with it before and I have taken a back seat to the approach by praying for people instead of talking with them or seeking them out. I do hope that God understands and allows for me being me and will not hold me accountable b/c I didn’t go into the mission field or do this or that. Yes we have done our amount of church work and Sunday school classes. But at some level I just finally said enough is enough. I can’t work, have a family, have a life and try to do all this too. I just finally said I’ll live my life and allow God to be a pilot of some sort in my life. I’m a Christian and will never NOT BE. But I don’t go out and do a lot of “works” or “search for lost souls”. I just be me. And I hope that is ok. I’m not even sure I’m a good example. I’m good with working with someone one on one who is ready to receive the word, but I’m done with “tudes” – attitudes. I kinda feel guilty because I know on judgment day I’ll be thinking I wished I’d done more. But people honestly don’t want to listen unless they are at rock bottom. I’ve worked with some of those by offering prayer with them when I felt it was appropriate. I am very compassionate one on one. IF they open up to me I open up to them. If someone is hurting and I see it, I’m at least all over that.
  • When Dad died I was off getting my Master’s Degree (MBA). I feel like I was in books and writing and meeting goals instead of being there for my mother and sister. Looking back, it was quite the accomplishment for me. I learned a lot. I ate it up. It worked well for my grief but other than phone calls every few days, I basically feel I wasn’t there for them. In addition the distance of being an hour and half away and our busy schedules keep me from being there for Mom as much as I want and that makes me feel guilty.
  • When the tornado happened and the Pandemic happened as with many major $ campaigns – so many others gave to it. I did not. I kept holding back thinking there would be someone personally that I could help. I have a thing about giving money to big organizations. I have to feel it in my heart that I’m giving toward something I can see the results of. I have given to people around me when I knew it was needed. I won’t give examples b/c we are not supposed to. So I feel I hold on to $$ and become selfish with what it goes toward. I guess I look back too on how hard we have worked for things and know that retirement is coming and I feel selfish at wanting to have enough to do things we want to do and I just hold on to it because I can’t decide to just let it go. So if I had more compassion, I’d make more of an effort.

So after looking at all that – that just came vomited forth. At least God says to confess right? Sorry, lol. Some of it extremely personal and at one time, hurtful. I realize it’s mostly just because I am who I am – introverted and driven to tasks and very detailed at those tasks. The Enneagram very forthrightly spelled or confirmed I should say – all of that. But I do feel like even though I’m wired the way I’m wired, God intends me to take that and work with it and try to be what He needs me to be. I agree I couldn’t have been everything everyone wanted me to be. I will never succeed at that. So looking back I don’t fault anyone or myself for that. Everyone has their needs and we all fail each other, especially if we have not leaned on God to help us with these needs and situations or to even understand what is really happening at the time or why. Which is why I feel I can openly talk about these things. I don’t blame Mom for telling me I treated my sister like a dog. She just wanted me to be nicer. She didn’t know the words would sting me still some 43 years later. She didn’t know I was an Enneagram 1 at the time and needed to be told things a certain way. lol. People who thought I could have been a better Mom were people who had their own images of who a Mom was in their heads and I didn’t meet their own images. They can’t help that. I’m an individual and had to do things the way Sonya knew to do them. To me I was doing everything just right and then some. I don’t blame George on our anniversary night out to tell me I could improve as a Mom –well ok I do a little– as I cried that night in Olive Garden. I was thinking he would brag on me as I’d tried so hard to be a good Mom and Spouse and he told me I needed to improve instead. Totally destroyed my heart. And I realized then how people even close to you can so easily misjudge your intentions. Has happened a thousand times since too. I don’t know that it was the place or time for that conversation but and I would have loved to have heard some good compliments as surely I did something right? But I guess like everyone else – mostly people are set to improve things by telling you the bad and not to pump you up with good things to be heard about yourself if they are so highly irritated with you. I don’t fault him though really over all. He just wanted more of me and my time was split. But I didn’t see that at the time. I was just being me. Wasn’t that ok? That was his main complaint was time and how I spent it. He felt I spent too much time worrying over the house work and hobbies. He didn’t understand me or my needs. It’s not easy being married, having families, having careers and having it “all”. And even when you try your best you are still not being the person everyone wants you to be. So with that and trying to be compassionate, I can give these words to someone else so it may help them. I’m not writing these words to hurt anyone’s feelings. It’s all kinda water under the bridge at this point. Yeah maybe there are still some hurts in there that come to the surface time to time. But I’m choosing to forgive and learn from it. I can’t go back. I’m still me. I still have the same traits. I probably would even do things the same way, give or take a few things. And others seem to be more patient and understanding after all these years too. We just all have to try to have more compassion to deal with trying to understand one another. No one really intends to hurt another. But we sure do. If we only had the compassion?

So there ya have it. All kinds of stuff there that sometimes make me struggle with my desires to be task oriented versus people oriented. I could do better. But I usually go with what I know and what I want to do in the moment. And hopefully this helps someone by reading. We strive to have it all, strive for perfection, and our personalities and personas and the way we are wired including our experiences – put wedges into things. We just have to steer through it while still being true to ourselves. I think if I could have communicated better, it would have helped but what can you do? It takes someone who will listen and let you talk to do that. Everyone likes to hear themselves talk instead of listen. Me included. So you yell to be heard when people don’t listen and then people take offense to that. So yeah, it’s just a lot easier to blog! And that is what I’ve done most of my life. Blog. And that’s why we all get all along is because we are listening to one another, reading one another, and understanding because we took the time to.

Thank you for reading and not judging.

So what ya’ll doing for the weekend? I’m dying to hear! I wrote a LOT for you all. I’d love to hear a line or two from you!

Invitations and Enneagrams

Oh my gosh, it’s my Friday! I’m taking tomorrow off for a lovely long weekend. The washing machine is being delivered and installed today. I will be in laundry bliss mode tonight and tomorrow.

I will also be working on the invitations to the shower. I took a late lunch yesterday, and worked on them a bit. I hadn’t really taken a lunch in a while – mostly work and eat at desk with a moment of checking social media, but yesterday I took a lunch and knocked out a few things.

I can post the invitation now. The Momma to Be has seen them and after filling one out, I had her check me. Not all the information will fit because it is a virtual one so I have a couple of inserts going with it. One telling about their use of cloth diapers, to consider buying a book for the baby instead of a card and be sure to sign the inside, although now it seems pointless to have mentioned that if they order from Amazon and have it sent. lol. Oh well. And I mentioned a little more about Zoom – to get on a few minutes before so they can check audio and cam settings and so forth.

Plus we have a game we are doing and there is an insert for that. So tomorrow I’ll be working on getting these all put together. They are already addressed and stamped. I just need to write on the invitations and put in the inserts. They will be taken to the post office sometime over the long weekend. I’m glad I thought to put EST and CST on the time as our families and friends on the Zoom call will be over at least a couple of time zones. What a disaster that would have been. The host and the hostee in two different time zones, lol. I can see me going “where is everyone?”

News from the ranch in Texas

Looks like a new little critter showed up that needed some loving. It was in Cody’s truck. I think it’s a boy.

Then came bath time.

Therefore, they named him “FORD”, lol.

Having a few lazy nights as always watching some shows. One night though I needed to work on a few invitation things. I’ve been spending more time in my office.

That said, we have almost finished with “Dead to Me” on Netflix. Only one or two more shows and we’ll knock that out this weekend. The show makes me laugh. It’s not really set to make you laugh but more set to make you go “oh you have got to be kidding me” with it’s ironic little twists.

The duck is back. I think this was Tuesday. I saw it again yesterday on Wednesday just walking around in the parking lot alone.

I feel so sorry for it. Why is it alone? Why isn’t it with its family or friends? I mean don’t birds of a feather flock together? I just want to pick it up and hug it. I know better though of course. I guess it has come to depend on people feeding it instead of the wild as it should be? But why aren’t others with him? Usually there are more. He just looks so lonely and I cannot stand it.

I’ve always had a heart for animals and birds – some of the birds anyway. Growing up I loved my stuffed animals more than I did the dolls. lol. I guess God designed me a little different. I’m still very much a girly girl but while the rest played with their dolls, I lived life full on with my stuffed animals. They were real to me. And instead of decorating with glass and china and pomp and circumstance, I preferred to decorate with wood with just a little lace doily here and there and natural colors. I’m drawn to log cabins. And I prefer settings next to a body of water instead of the mountains – although either scenario is acceptable. I think that it’s awesome that God makes us all different and we DO have our “flocks” out there somewhere. Yes this is all going somewhere.

Recently in a prayer, I asked God to help me understand why I’m wired so differently than most. And why I’m most misunderstood. Verbally I do not do a very good job explaining my persona or reasonings to others. In writing I do a better job of it. Which is why I do it. I asked Him to help me understand why it is that I don’t have compassion that others do. I do one on one but not so much in the masses. God commands us to love one another. I am trying to do that through my persona. But I’m so drawn to inanimate things. Like computers, apps, books, stuffed animals – lol, real animals that can’t talk back. I often have thought “why am I so different” but really chalked it up to just being introverted and let it go. And that is true.

Someone told me a while ago to check into the Enneagram. Not because I was telling them all these things but I had asked a friend if they knew anything new and they said “yeah I’ve been into Enneagrams lately! It’s all the rage in Nashville right now”. This was months ago – maybe a year ago. It’s been on my list to check into and I finally just took a few minutes when I got home last night to look it up and I did the little online test.

I’m a “1”. I took a picture of it so I could learn more. I may go back and pay the $19 for the complete results, but I googled a Type one and Type 6 to see what it would say. I need to do a little bit more reading. But after doing only a few minutes of research it has provided levels of understanding of why I do the things I do, think the way I do, act the way I do.

Here is a pic I took of a Type 1 – if you can even see it. Might have to zoom in.

I’ve not had anything ever describe me quite so perfectly. It’s kindof important to me to realize that evidently there are more of me out there, lol. There’s not anything wrong with me. I’m a “type”. lol It’s ok that other’s don’t get me because it’s just that they don’t understand. You can’t explain this to people. It’s not even appropriate to explain these things to people. It’s just not talked about. That’s even weirder. lol

So now I need to go and check out the 6, b/c that also was a big part of it. I’m not through with this at all. If we can understand one another that is a big thing. Whoever figured all this out was genius. If they are right at all.

But it is intriguing for sure. If you want to take tests, they are on line. Just google it. The test was free and then you can google again results for your number and get info that is on line w/o paying for the report. There is enough info out there now. But I think there is a book out there. Might find it and purchase the real book, if so. That would be nice to have on hand.

Well, I better quite typing and head on in. But I do want to add – having just spent a few minutes on this – I have started to develop some understandings about myself and why I am less tolerant of others, don’t always have empathy that others have. I have always known that my feelings and emotions run really deep. I had already suspected and figured out that I had developed a shell of protection around me because of that. And I think that is part of the problem. We shield ourselves from pain and hurt and feeling and emotion. I’ve done that. I’ve removed a lot of feeling and have built walls.

I didn’t ask God to break me so I could love again, trust again, feel again, be compassionate again – I couldn’t go through anymore heartbreaks over anything and survive it. I did ask Him to SHOW me though why I am the way I am. And I think through this Enneagram – he is showing me.

We build walls as life has happened. We do what we have to do to protect our psyches. And it’s ok to be who we are. We just have to learn to take that and become who God wants us to be, so that we can follow His love commandments and understand ourselves so we can understand each other and DO just that.

I could go on, but my other calling is calling me. Got to get to work.

My patience is about out, waiting for this washing machine. I’m gonna wash the laundry and the worlds problems with it down the drain and then work on my invites and the rest of my list.

Actually have some fun times with friends planned – a little pool party – in which we can only have less than 10 gathered. Following the rules. Not going to hide out for years over this thing. It’s gonna be what it is going to be. I’ve asked God to protect us as we emerge. He either will or He won’t. But we can’t NOT keep staying away from family or friends.

Ya’ll have a good one. Back later in the weekend with an update. If you hear shoutin’ it’s one of two things. It either did arrive and I’m happy or it didn’t and I’m having a full on hissy fit. Because I’m a 1! And I have expectations!

My New Avatar, Solving Household Woes, and Eating Out Again

Here’s what it looks like to work on a video – the little bit I worked on last weekend. Everything is in the timeline I just have to tweak each pic and video, and add transitions, add in layers and text, and then the last thing is the audio. It’s quite the project. And it’s fun until things go wrong. It’s been good to get away from it the past day or two. I’m not sure I’m totally happy with the logo page. And I grabbed the wrong logo to remove the background from. So I had to fix that.

Did you know you can go to “” in your browser and remove the background from a pic? So far it’s been free. Now my logo can work on more than a white background. But I’m learning how to do “picture within picture” and that is how I was able to layer on the logo. All that said, once invitations are done I can whittle away it.

I should have been videoing some this week already – like our adventures to buy the washing machine and our going out to eat again for the first time in weeks. But darnit, was just not in the mood and in a hurry I guess. I did at least get photos but I should have video’d a bit while picking out my new washer. I will get in a better habit of capturing our week. For the most part right now these videos are in “test mode”. I mean really other than everything breaking, we really haven’t had anything exciting or videoworthy to share. But I figure those of you that read the blog when there is nothing to share, will delight in our videos as well, lol! I’m really excited about it but I will say it pushes the edge a bit with still being in the learning curve with Mac and iMovie and trying to do big projects instead of itty bitty ones. I dive in always.

So – I got ahead of myself. The washer repair guy showed and said “it’ll really be just as cheap to buy a new one with parts and labor”. George checked and it had been 5 years we had the washer. Warranty just expired. So we went to Lowe’s last night and bought another one. I got tickled yesterday that George told me “the repair man said to just buy a cheap one”. I figured he thought he needed some leverage so I would not go in and pick out the big charmer that sparkled and sang to me in the florescent essence of Lowe’s. I get it. I’ve always wanted those spaceship looking appliances that make you go “woah”. But they were always too big to fit the spaces we needed so he lucked out. I didn’t see many of those by the way. There was one set – the rest looked more normal. But I really liked the glass top. I did not pick the most expensive, but I did pick one that had a fairly good size tub so the comforter could be washed in it. I picked a mid range price. I didn’t get caught up in all the buttons. We purchased extended warranty this time. There once was a day when these things would last 15 to 20 years. Five? Really Whirlpool. It was a part that used to be metal and now is plastic and it broke. Whirlpool die hards would go buy another and Whirlpool gets better sales when they have quicker turnaround sales. But I didn’t play that game. Whirlpool let me down this time so I passed it over. I won’t forget it either. They are tarnished in my book.

So we’ll try the LG from Korea and see how it does. I wanted to buy American but there were only Whirlpool and Maytag and Maytag was the most expensive on the floor. And I wasn’t playing that game either. So they outpriced themselves. And I also passed over a China one I liked b/c frankly I’m just mad -rightly so or not- that there is so much “hype” over how they do things over there. No one can get the facts or the real scoop and they are secret and sneaky. Yet every product we touch was made from there. And I have developed a distrust over the years. I don’t have facts, just suspicions on nearly everything. So I kindly passed the Chinese washer by. “Bless it’s Heart.” lol

Oh and here is a good place to mention that the new toilet wasn’t working properly and kept running. And the downstairs repair work didn’t work right around the downstairs toilet and it leaked. They had to remove the carpet in that restroom. Why was carpet in there anyway? It needs to be something different. lol So plumbers were back yesterday and fixed the toilets, we think. The roofers on the other hand were rained out to fix the leak in the sunroom and to block off the chimney and concrete over and all that. Geez.

Katy and Cody came and got Findlay aka “Little Stink” as George calls her. She is a sweet baby and we will miss her. I was sleepy before coffee when they arrived and I realized later I forgot to hug Findlay bye. She still has so much energy but not nearly what she had.

Here’s a pic of Sunday with Katy working on something for the shower in June. Findlay loved sitting on the sofa in the sun room. We ate dinner in there Sun night. Dinner was Sushi and Chinese. (Yes I know, I’m fickle – I like my Chinese food – most of it was made in America though, lol).

Here’s my Facebook Avatar. I went with heavy set. You’d think I’d pick a skinny one, but I chose to do the plump version. lol. I don’t think it looks like me though. I did the best I could. My hair now is also going to kindof gray and really dark brown/blackish. The brown is almost out with the last cut I did this weekend. So eventually I’ll redo my Avatar. This will do for now.

A duck flew in to say “hi” yesterday at the office.

It was a dull gray day for much of the day. I tried to lighten it but when I did you saw the window reflection. I think I have a duck friend. lol

We had dinner at the Lost Cajun last night after Lowe’s. Our first sit down since the Corona mess in March. Much of what they have is fattening. So what appealed the most was the fried shrimp and catfish platter.

I wanted potato salad and red beans and rice instead of slaw and fries. The potato salad had one diced potato in it, the rest was just the sauce, lol lol lol. George gave me some fries and I cut it up and put it in there and called it a day. That was kinda weird. Otherwise it was all excellent. The red beans and rice was really kind of a main dish or a big bowl anyway and was an upcharge. They should have it has a side option as a cup of gumbo. Other than having a “side problem” the fish and shrimp were great, the service was excellent. The staff was happy to be there and serving and in a great mood. And they serve beer – not much – they could improve by offering local brews to support the community. Their choices were Bud products and Abita and something else. Not a lot of choice but we went with the Abita Amber. (I think). Yes you get honest reviews from me. I will even give pointers on how they can improve their business in case they read, which they won’t. Unless some skimmer program picks it up. If so “hello there”. lol

Speaking of people who read, I’d like to say hello to the following Countries that have visited the blog:

I know some bloggers/readers from Australia and UK and I know someone who is in Singapore but it doesn’t mean that is who is reading. Someone from Canada has been reading for a while. And India has been showing up for some time as well. Sometimes China will. We’ll see if they show up after this post today. They were reading as I posted and blogged about the pandemic, for sure. I thought that was interesting. I think France, Denmark and Uzbekistan were just mistakes? lol. Anyway, welcome to the blog!

Well it’s payroll day and I need to get a move on. I am happy knowing that the washer is on the way.

I am worried about getting the invitations done and having time to do that while working FT. I want to mail them over the weekend or at least by first of next week.

I have to put two inserts with it – it’s why I made sure to get an envelope type. Anyway I plan to work on this some tonight, but I’m taking Friday off too. I just need a long weekend to try to get some things done, get laundry done, do some home projects and geeky projects and have a great long holiday weekend. One step at a time.

I joined the premium Zoom for the shower and now I need to see if I can add Ellen as a user and host – if not I’ll let her have the account and I’ll sign on as a guest. I think. I also need to go and shop for a few shower gifts and decor, in coordination with what Katy is doing. So we can get that in the mail. But one thing at a time. Invitations first.

So I’m glad to be taking a PTO day Friday.

It’s payroll day so once again…I keep typing, but I need to go! I am in a much better mood knowing the washer will be delivered Thursday. And it did much for my morale to go out to eat last night.

Roger says Hello. Bless him. He’s getting old now and his feet and legs are so wobbly. See you in a day or two or three as life happens.

Ya’ll have a GREAT couple of days!

Frustrations Build, Lost Files, and Technical Difficulties

We’ve been so busy I’ve not even had a chance to show my pretty plant that Katy gave me for Mother’s Day. Didn’t even get to blog yesterday!

Yesterday it was very odd to start a Saturday without doing laundry. It’s been almost a week with no washing machine and the clothes, sheets, and towels are starting to mount. As is my morale.

I cleaned the kitchen, fixed us some eggs, helped take care of doggies and the doggies have not actually been very good lately. Also not helping my morale. Maisy is having some episodes and Findlay, while having a good time, we are probably missing her queues to go out to do potty business. So we have been cleaning sections of carpet most all weekend long. ::sigh::

The new toilet quit working yesterday. Well it kept running. And running. And running. And George has to go to Lowe’s to buy a part for it. I mean really? All the toilets on the shelf and we buy the one with a faulty part and it doesn’t work a week before breaking?

I had a virtual shower to attend at 1 p.m. and got on that. My internet quit working momentarily and kicked me out of the room half way into the shower. Only the host could let me back in. Since the host was opening gifts – I had to text relatives to please have the host let me back in (give permission). I was about to give up and go do something else but finally I was allowed back in the group.

You see a theme here? Life is trying to beat me up this week. What did I do wrong? Simply Exist?

Yes I know, I know. You have to stop and smell the roses. Well, I don’t have any but I do have some pretty peonies.

After the shower, we went to Publix. I had to get my blood pressure meds refilled and we needed pet foods. We still left with a cart full. I needed freezer foods to take for lunches. I’m just so tired of frozen food for lunches. I’m tired of eating at my desk. Quite frankly I think I am a bit tired of everything – I’m still struggling here with time crunches, old or broken everything’s, and enough frustrations at every thing I try to touch not working appropriately – that I could just scream. But I’m trying to be calm and go on and just let it be. Go on to the next thing. I’ve done that so much I’m becoming ADD and running in circles all at once. Can’t finish AnYTHing!

But anyway at Publix I reached in for my mask and it’s in my work bag and not my purse. George also forgot his mask. Grrr. I felt naked and afraid, lol. But we did not go home. We just took our chances.

Oh yeah, I’m also way over this COVID bit too. I think if one more thing happens I will go over the edge. If I do I’ll send a post card. 😉

On the way to Publix we talked with my BIL and SIL and we are going to have them over – and also plan to eat dinner with them. Kevin (BIL) is going to look at our internet situation and see if he can help me. My iMac just turns off the internet after a while – it’s why I got cut out of the virtual shower yesterday. I have to reboot and then it connects again. It’s so annoying to be in the middle of something and then it won’t connect until reboot. And I’m supposed to host one of my own showers in June. I know that with all the technical difficulties that ALWAYS surround any piece of anything that I touch – I already know this will be an issue. The evil computer gremlins know they can knock me to me knees with these technical glitches – so they basically do.

In light of this, my SIL kindly suggested (she knows me well) that it worked really well for the person opening the gifts to stream from their location. Amazing idea. I am ok with paying for the premium zoom account and letting Ellen have the password and controls. She will have family on her end to help while she opens/shows the gifts. So likely we will try to do it that way. If I have connection issues at least it will only impact me and not everyone.

There is always a black cloud that follows me with things going wrong, going sideways, and basically attacking the world I try so hard to control and keep upright.

After we did our shopping, I was starving. I’d not had time to eat lunch. So I asked George if he would go to the new Slim Chickens place. Oh my – I am going to love this place. We went thru drive through of course as we had groceries in the car and it was 80 degrees out. Their menu looks amazing. I will be going here every chance I get. I will risk the COVID. They have outside seating also with a covered patio. I really wanted to study the menu but George is not a fan of the drive thru ordering for other people. (Once he backed into a Sonic backwards so I, the passenger, could place my own order, lol lol lol lol.). Anyway I just made it easy. It was almost 4 p.m. and dinner would be happening at some point, so I just said get the pepper ranch chicken sandwich – something like that after pulling them up online to get advance quick start to the menu. Oh my heavens it was lovely. It had those onion straws on there and the ranch sauce with just a slight bit of heat. And lots of pickles and I am not normally a pickle person but it all worked so well. I’m trying to like pickles as the vinegar is good for your gut! It just occurred to me that I like to eat so well because it seems to be the very ONE thing in life I possibly have any control over!

Oh yeah, I’ll be going back here. They had some salads that looked really good. And some sides. Yeah, this place is going to be a staple with me. I’ll be running extra errands just so I can go thru the drive thru. I wonder if they have breakfast? Probably not. I’ll have to try their tea. They have milk shakes, but I’ll be staying away from those.

I had so many notes of “to do’s” that I had to work in to my to do list yesterday. At least after putting the groceries up I was able to kind of regroup. Most of it is just geeky stuff to do with the blog or the movie clips or the creation of YouTube channels. I’ve managed to create quite a list. But some involve other things going on that eventually need to be done. Even some reading and watching. I put some things on here so I won’t forget about them, like the remaining gift card balances that need to be used up that have been in my purse for year.

Back to yesterday, I refilled the vitamins and supplements for the next week and peeked at the wardrobe to make sure I had enough pants to wear next week in case I didn’t get time to wash anything once the repair man (hopefully) fixes the washer. I’m afraid to hope that it will be fixed Monday. These days there is no guarantee that a said repair person will even show and if they do, can they get the part? What another week? I know I’m a bit pessimistic. I prefer to call it that life has taught me such and it’s realistic. So if it does take a week to get it fixed I can say “that is what I figured”. Otherwise I’ll be pleasantly surprised.

I’d really like to go to sleep, wake up and everything be fixed, working, and in order. But that would be boring right.

I also looked up how to get soap scum off the shower stalls. This has plagued me for years. I’ve got something I’m going to try before ordering a $23 bottle of something Mom suggested.

The bathroom curtain I bought it pretty, and it covers it up – but it’s just weird to have to cover the bathroom stall window up. It’s just flat weird. And that has also been really bothering me. As the floors/carpet/kitchen.

I just want to wake up and everything be to my standards of living. I’ve been highly aggravated this week with all of it. It’s been building up for the last few months. At least George doesn’t have to fight with the plumbing. I know he is relieved to have his desires met. And I’ll probably enjoy the water filter, although I cannot say I can taste a big difference but maybe I’ve not had time to slow down and really notice. Mostly I’ve had coffee or Isagenix mixes but I did have a bit of straight water to drink in the overnight. Thinking back – I think it was less metallic, less chlorine tasting. It’s in the overnight when I usually drink the water unless I pour a glass after dinner. I think he paid a couple of thousand more to have that filter installed and then all faucets put out the fresh filtered water. So hopefully it is doing what they said it would. Normally at night when I get water from George’s bathroom sink – it DOES have that metallic taste and it wasn’t like that last night as I remember. So as I sit and ponder that – I think it is going to be a nice thing.

I got baby shower gift ordered for Ellen and Justin, the one we are doing the shower for. Katy and I went together to get it and it’s being sent via Amazon. George came in and helped me decide because he needed to be involved too. I didn’t want to be the only one deciding. I’m happy with our decision.

And I also gave Maisy a bit of a trim yesterday. (As well as myself.) She looks quite a bit better and was very patient. She looks a bit refreshed. I will try to work on Roger in an effort to hold on to our June appointment. If our groomer is still in business and working by then. I guess I should call but I’ve just not had time. I called once and no answer and left a message with no return call so I think they had been shut down and not worrying with the phone system til they got back. I need to check on it but I’ll wait til we are less busy.

Mom called yesterday through the House Party app so we could video each other and she had fallen and landed on her tailbone earlier in the day. She said for a long time she could not get up. She had her car keys in her hand and set her car alarm off so the neighbors would come out and look. Two neighbors did and they helped her get up. She was finally able to walk again and said she even cleaned off the porch but it was hurting her to sit.

So I ordered her a doughnut pillow. She didn’t think it was broken but just sore.

As I’ve been sitting here typing, my neck and shoulders have been tightening up and I think I slept funny. Starting to get a pain in my neck. Yes, I guess this week has literally been a pain in the neck with all that has gone wrong. A few things have gone right though so there’s that to hold on to.

I started working on the video/pics that I took over the last week to week and a half. What do I really want to do today? Work on that! But I at least got to geek out for a few minutes. In the few minutes that I worked on the project – probably an hour – I discovered that all of my iMovie audio library (the music and the sound effects that came with imovie on my iMac) is missing. Dammit. What is the deal? What have done?

Do I have time to deal with this? NO! I will finish this video and then I’ll save the project. I will use my Epidemic Sound music and sound effects. Then I guess I will do an uninstall and reinstall of iMovie (????). I don’t want to mess up what I currently have in there. I could just go to Movavi as I’d downloaded that too. It’s just that my learning curve is not as far along with that and I gave up trying it last week, getting frustrated.

I’m trying to be patient with life but right now – nothing is going according to plan. The things I even enjoy are going South. There is SUCH a big learning curve to the Mac life and jumping in and trying to do videos right off the bat, on top of it, is just crazy. I am trying to learn both at once. I think I got my files in order and learning how to do that. However the icloud thing confuses me. I’m not sure what to add to the icloud and what not to. Photos are in the cloud except I move them off the cloud b/c they show in my phone if they are in the cloud. I don’t want all of them on my phone. Anyway I’m not going down the file path here but it still is kindof a confused mess to me. I can at least find most files though which was more than I can say a month ago – and I will need to back them up if not in the cloud. But have I moved things around so much that I’ve deleted or moved the audio files for imovie? Perhaps so. I’m just in shock right now, having just discovered this. It literally makes me sick to my stomach. I’m not sure why everything has to be amiss and so complicated. That edge I was talking about? I think I’m there!

And me being one that won’t quit til I find an answer – this will irritate the entire fire out of me until I figure it out. And I don’t have time to figure it out this week.

So anyway, there will be a VLOG at some point. But I have to stop to do life. I can’t just full time figure all this out. Most things you can learn via YouTube. But it just takes time. Hey at least I cranked a couple of videos out. But I decided to just “start where I was” and try to capture a week of video and pics. I had more than I thought. I have to whittle down about 33 minutes of footage to 13 and I’m working on an intro. I’ll probably be doing a lot of voiceovers and have to get used to that. So it’ll be a week or two or three before the video is available and they will be few and far between at first til I get a handling on this iMovie thing. Geez. As if making the movie itself isn’t a learning curve, the files have to go missing from the program itself? Can I curse here? Ok I won’t. But I sure feel like it. lol

So I’ll be working on the house today and trying to get it in order. Maybe that will give me some calming down time away from the computer which is supposed to be my calm time.

And I need to begin working on the invitations.

And we get to see Katy and Cody today. Excited about that at least. They leave tomorrow.

And I am through griping for the day. At least on the blog.

George is not going to be a happy man when I tell him not much show watching this week. I’ll be doing my to do list. The invitations are up at the top of the list and they are not going to send themselves. ha.