Surprise! Oh, and Happy Thanksgiving.

Greetings y’all! Since my last post, many things have happened. We found a kitten, I moved into the ‘cover design’ phase of publishing, and Thanksgiving came. It has been an interesting few weeks to say the least.

On Saturday, November 7th, my dad gave me a ride to Macon, to Kitty City Cat Rescue, so I could pick up ‘Maleficent’ and bring her home. The whole idea was to surprise my daughter with her very own kitten. She has had the name picked out for years, though not as long as my husband and I had the name ‘Merlyn’ picked out before we were finally able to establish a home where we could have her.

‘Maleficent’ is proving to be very energetic, with a feisty attitude, but she loves to play. She reminds us of ‘Merlyn’ when ‘Merlyn’ when her age.

The day I brought her home, we absolutely surprised our daughter. ‘Maleficent’ had spent the entire 45-minute car ride, from Macon to Thomaston, meowing, which is normal. Unfortunately, the long car ride mixed with my dad’s driving technique, gave ‘Maleficent’ a queasy stomach. Luckily, I decided to include the blanket you see in the photo, in her carrier, and she only got sick on it. Twice. The good news is she hasn’t gotten sick since.

Having ‘Maleficent’ around has been different. ‘Merlyn’ and ‘Carlee’ are 8 and 6-years old respectively, so it’s been quite some time since we had a kitten around. ‘Maleficent’ is feeling right at home though because she runs the halls with ‘Carlee’ at night and into the early morning, and she gets her roughhousing with ‘Merlyn’ during the day, when she isn’t sleeping. Her favorite early morning activity is to play in my bed, attacking different areas of my bedding, about half an hour before my alarm goes off for work. I admit, it was kind of annoying at first, but what do you do when it’s a kitten.

I mentioned earlier, my book has moved forward, and now I am in ‘cover design’ mode. As soon as my friend whose a retired hairdresser can trim my hair a little, I get to experience my own little homemade personal photoshoot. I’ve never had a personal photoshoot, unless you count glamour shots that sadly fell through due to cost. That’s a story for another time.

Now, Thanksgiving. That was a busy day. I took the day off, meaning I didn’t open any time slots for my student’s parents to book. Instead, I woke up at 4am to begin prepping and baking. A week before this, my husband and I created the menu we had been planning to cook for our family and friends.

As you can see, we offered several choices for Thanksgiving dinner.

Preparing everything was tiring, but fun and worth it. By the time my husband got up at 6am, both pumpkin pies were in the oven, and I was filling the deviled eggs. Afterward, I started in on mixing my no-bake cheesecakes together, then I took a break. All the prepping we did, it reminded me of my mornings when I worked as a prep cook for Applebee’s in Monroe, Georgia. My husband and I learned early on that we work better in the kitchen together than anyone else we know. There are some people who don’t understand how we work so well together.

Now, to say our Thanksgiving day went absolutely perfectly smooth, that would be a lie. We did reach a hiccup in the system plan. First, it rained all morning, off and on, from heavy downpour to light drizzles, back and forth. We might have gotten past the rain, but the hiccup that followed left us without further options. We hooked everything up correctly, the propane tank to the turkey deep fryer we purchased, but there was a hit/miss somewhere because we weren’t able to officially deep fry the turkey. It wasn’t raining when my husband hooked everything together. It wasn’t raining when we set it all up in the spot we designated specifically for it. It began raining as we were trying to ignite the purpose, and because it did, we had to shut it down. So, instead of deep fried turkey, we properly executed a last moment oven roasted turkey. It was delicious!

The hardest part was sending text messages to our family and friends; “Due to inclement weather, deep fried turkey is now oven roasted. We’re sorry for the switch.” I felt like Gordon Ramsey on “Uncharted” when he’s unable to deliver his original dish idea to his guests of their culture. I am so thankful everyone was understanding. Well, almost everyone.

I experienced an additional hiccup, but it was neither food nor Thanksgiving related. At least I don’t think it was, but I don’t honestly know. My husband and I decided to do Thanksgiving this way because, as I mentioned and we all already know, we all have to take caution against Covid-19. I spent Thanksgiving, planning, prepping, preparing, and cooking with so much care, love, devotion, and thanks. Every plate we made, everybody we fed, we did it because we are thankful to have each and everyone we included in our Thanksgiving feast, in our life.

Our delicious Thanksgiving dinner.

Well y’all, I think that’s all for now. Christmas is right around the corner and with Christmas comes our Christmas menu. Yes, my husband and I are planning the same kind of theme for Christmas, but yes, a different menu. No turkey. We’re thinking about a spiral ham, prime rib, and colorful side dishes. Equally delicious.

Additionally, it’s not just Christmas we’re planning for, my husband and I were blessed to have a child born exactly 2 days after Christmas. This year, she turns 16, but because she’s a Descendant’s fan, it’s not ‘sweet sixteen’, she prefers her 16th birthday VK (villain kid) style; ‘sinister sixteenth’.

Thanks for reading y’all! I’ll post again soon!

A Little Bit of Everything

Good morning y’all.  I’m sorry it’s been awhile since I last posted, but things have been, for lack of a better word, slightly depressing.  Some changes have occurred where my family is concerned, and I wasn’t sure how to deal with it.  To sum it up, my dad quit talking to me for reasons only he knows.  At first, I didn’t know how to deal with it, but then I had an epiphany.  If he doesn’t want to talk to me, that’s his choice, not mine.  He’ll come around in his own time.

So, moving on.

After more than a month, last week, I finally heard from my publication coordinator, via email, that my manuscript is ready for me to review the edits the editing department has proposed in my manuscript.  Since this past weekend was 4th of July weekend, I took that time away from work, and now, today, I’ll begin reviewing the edits in depth.  This should be fun.

In other news, about 5 years ago, I gave up my Facebook account.  Why?  It was the only way I could disassociate myself from select people I no longer wanted anything to do with.  It was the only way I could seek the solitude I needed to overcome the dramas and stresses of my own life.  While Facebook is a great way to keep in contact and communicate with select friends and family, I didn’t want any part of any of it.  Recently, I’ve been thinking that now might be the right time to regroup and restart.  I admit, part of me is fearful of Facebook because of the people I once knew.  Like the movie “Cyberbully” with actress Emily Osment, I couldn’t escape, but I wasn’t being bullied.  People just would not leave me alone.  However, with my book in publishing and ‘Moore’ Books Free Library slowly coming together, I think those two things are reason enough to restart a Facebook account, but rather than a personal account, I’m thinking more along the lines of ‘Public Figure’ account.  With coronavirus cases still on the rise, Facebook will be an avenue that I would not otherwise have for online book signings and other such events.  Actor and author, Chris Colfer did it, so why can’t I do similar?

The entirety of it will take time, but that’s okay because all of the best things in life take time.

On a totally different note, I gave gardening another shot.  My first time didn’t go so well.  While I tried my hand at growing green beans, cucumbers, peppers, squash, and a couple other vegetables, things were going good until I transferred them to bigger planters, then they all died.  This time, some friends and neighbors gave me a few a tomato plants, and I’m very pleased to say that I have 8 tomatoes producing so far.  They’re still green, but they are growing.  My ‘bae’ has to craft together some stakes to help my roma tomato plant stand more upright, but it’s doing well and that’s all I can ask for right now.  Roma hasn’t yet produced anything, but it’s early yet.  I do have a few pictures to post of my budding tomatoes, and I’ll post them soon, but I have to first transfer the pictures from my phone to my computer.  Then I’ll be able to share them with you.  If things continue to grow as well as they are, this time next year, I’m going to try for a raised personal garden.  Time will tell.

Finally, the Georgia heat has really kicked in full swing since summer officially began.  The humidity is practically through the roof, making it harder for my ‘bae’ to breathe when outside what with his heart condition.  Heck, I’m perfectly healthy and the humidity is even getting to me.  The only time I’m really going outside is to feed and water my plants, or to take out the garbage.  It’s so hot out, we don’t even feel like grilling.

So, that pretty much sums up the essence of my life currently.  A little of this, a little of that, but not much of anything else.  I’m doing what I can, and practicing patience by working on the inside.  More or less cleaning, rearranging, and reorganizing.

Well y’all, I guess that’s it for this post.  As always, thank you all for reading and following my blog.  By the way, is there anything y’all would like me to write about?  I’m always open to suggestions; something new to talk about.

Until next time!

Ch-Ch-Ch-Changes…

I’ve met my fair share of needy people.  Now, I’m not talking about people that need things like food to eat or a roof over their head, or clothes, I’m talking about needy, clingy, I wave to a stranger in a friendly manner and they misread my friendly wave needy.  I’m doing nothing more than waving in acknowledgement, but they acknowledge it as come over anytime and tell me all about your life.  Having encountered so many who are like this, I submitted myself to hermitage.  Keeping to myself to the point I wouldn’t even go outside.  I withdrew myself from the likes of society.

This has changed.

My husband and I moved into our own place, but we do have neighbors closer in distance to us than the last place we lived.  I didn’t really think about how close our neighbors are as we were moving in, but I swore to myself I wouldn’t walk down that path of friendliness again.  I enjoy having friends, but I also enjoy spending time alone because that’s when I can dive into my creative thoughts uninterrupted.  I lose myself in sketching or writing, or reading a really good book, whichever direction my thoughts take me at that particular moment.  These are my favorite pastimes, but not everyone accepts this, and most of the time it’s because they don’t understand it.  I don’t expect others to understand my creative fulfillment, but I do expect them to accept that art is who I am.  It’s what makes me who I am.  I accept others for who they are and what they do, but I also expect the same in return.  In other words, if you don’t understand it, don’t criticize me for it, allow me to either educate you or leave me alone.

On an evening, within a week after my family and I moved into our new place, we experienced a ‘tiny’ ant problem around our kitchen sink.  I noticed our landlord was across the road, on our neighbor’s porch visiting and in conversation, so I sent my husband over to inquire on some bug spray of some sort.  They didn’t have any bug spray, but they did offer us another solution which helped put an end to our ‘tiny’ ant problem, and because my husband went over to inquire, he also met our neighbors.  My husband is an old ‘hippie’ and he’ll be the first one to tell you this about himself, so he’s able to feel others out.  Not in the touchy-feely sort of way, but he can read them like characters in a book.  After cleaning up our ant problem, we finished cleaning the kitchen from dinner, and then my husband convinced me to go with him to return the borrowed ant killing solution.  As hesitant as I am on a regular basis, I allowed myself this neighborly meet and greet.  I’m glad I did this because in meeting our neighbors, rather than avoiding them like I normally do, I stepped outside my comfort zone, allowing myself a change in socialization.  Before this, I practically closed myself off from the rest of the world because of a handful of people I chose to allow to take advantage of me.

In meeting our neighbors, I did some soul searching, seeking advice from my inner self, and following my intuition.  I have to follow my heart.  By following my heart, I have to accept that I’ve made mistakes in my past, allowing people to practically walk all over me in a figurative manner.  By following my heart, I’m following my husband, trusting that he, who has years of experience before me, can read a person enough to sense whether they’re genuine or pretending to be something or someone they aren’t.  There are too many fake people in this world, but I can’t continue judging others according to those I’ve already met and distrust.

This isn’t the only thing changing in my life either.  I’m changing as an individual person as well.  No longer hesitating to ask about things I’m curious about.  No longer fearing I might offend someone.  No longer worrying about being misjudged or judged for my sometimes eclectic personality.  I admit, sometimes I ask questions that really shock a person, but I don’t expect my questions to be answered.  I’ll be the first one to tell you, if it’s too personal, tell me, don’t feed me a line of lies because my question crossed the line.  Tell me I’ve crossed a line.  As a mature woman, I will understand.  In return, ask me anything, if it’s none of your business, I’ll tell you.

It’s been so long since I’ve surrounded myself with real people, it’s quite refreshing.  I feel renewed hope and real connections.  My husband and I were visiting with our neighbors the other night when the idea to write this blog surfaced my thoughts.  Instantly, I was asking for a piece of paper and a pen or pencil to write.  They offered up both without question and even as I proceeded to spend a good 15 to 20 minutes writing out my thoughts, neither of them questioned me or criticized me for taking the moment to write what I had on my mind.

Changes.

Good and bad, changes come in all shapes, sizes, and levels of importance.  Throughout the last two months, the changes have come as expected and completely unexpected.  Moving.  Exploring an unknown destination at the most inconvenient time thanks to an error in GPS.  Adjusting, planning, and anything else I’ve encountered but am unable to list, the changes have proven to be for the best.  I didn’t understand them at the time, but because they occurred, I had to change, to become a better person.  Each experience is a lesson.  I had to learn that I’m going to be okay, that things are going to be okay, that we are going to be okay.  Most importantly, there are still good people out there, I just have to listen more closely, and follow my heart.