“Everything Happens for a Reason?”

Now isn't that Random?
Now isn’t that Random?

(this is an old post, re-inserted due to deletion) “Everything happens for a reason?” Personally, I really do not believe this. (did you just GASP?!!!) I think it is one of those things people say to you when you tell them something about your life that undeniably sucks. I think those platitudes are just our mind’s way of trying to contextualize experiences that don’t fall inside our usual frameworks for making sense of the world. I believe that sometimes we all make pointless, useless choices…..and these are the times you make “lemonade out of lemons”. There are just too many really bad things out there for me to rationalize “everything happens for a reason”. I guess a lot of it comes down to situations like this: The mother of a severely handicapped child who has to listen to the well-meaning chirping’s of her friends who say “everything happens for a reason…(or) God only gives special children to special mothers who are strong” Yes, these people do not know what else to say…they are well-meaning. But this mother is thinking…. “there’s NO reason good enough that I should have to deal with this severe disability….and I don’t think it is part of a LARGER plan!”. Here is what I DO believe: We ALL have life experiences that make us STRONGER. We learn from these experiences. These experiences are what mold us. They help us better our choices for the future. I have no real problem believing in the randomness of life.  Or, that maybe SOME  things happen for a reason.  BUT….. This is only MY take, albeit a very unpopular view…..but it is what it is And I am what I am:-) I’m definitely not trying to change anyone’s thought process. Just give insight on another view.

My Husband, the Senior Citizen

“Everyone here is old except us!”  D observed as we were walking around Blue Ridge.  Of course this was said the  day we were celebrating his Sixtieth Birthday.  That observation was very amusing.  Of course he practically stole me from the cradle.  Why I was attending junior high when he was graduating high school!  Ok, we are both getting on up there in age. But aside from a few extra aches and pains,  I feel pretty darn young!   When I was younger I always thought life would be pretty much over when I approached Sixty.  Now Sixty is the new Thirty=Nine!  My sweetie is sixty and I’ll be there before long.  But in many ways life is more beautiful now than it ever was.

My gift to D was a ride on the Blue Ridge Scenic Railway.  We opted for the open air car and were delighted with the weather. We rode for an hour along the Taccoa River enjoying the stunning Fall foliage. There was a two hour layover in McCaysville, Georgia / Copperhill, Tennessee.  We walked around the  quaint towns and enjoyed a meal in Pearly Gates.  We sat at a table with a family from Carrollton. A Pawpaw, Grandma, and their Granddaughter, Reagan, named after the Republican President Ronald Reagan.  They told us  Reagan had an older sister, Kennedy, named after Democratic President John F. Kennedy. They were a delight and  we enjoyed their company. We boarded the train for our ride back to Blue Ridge. The clouds had dissipated and the sunny views were spectacular.

We stayed at a Ma and Pa Inn.  The innkeeper upgraded our room to the Bear Cave suite since it was D’s Birthday.  We felt like we were in a cabin on the mountain side!  We packed in so much on this two day trip!  We visited Mercier Orchards,  fished in a trout stream, shopped in some of the unique shops,  went joy riding along the mountain roads, ate at some of the local hot spots, and of course the scenic train ride!.  Neither one of us had time to be grumpy.

This was a memorable Birthday.  We’ve been together since 1983. D is not one to hold my hand while we are walking, or show any public display of affection.  He doesn’t surprise me with flowers and isn’t what most people would consider romantic.  But I melt when he calls me Babydoll.  If he ever calls me Betty, he is probably  irritated with me about something.  From the very first month we dated he started calling me that and has never stopped. One thing I loved about him from the beginning is his sense of humor.  It is his strong suit, and he enjoys my humor..We laughed a lot on this trip.  I am looking forward to our Golden years!.

Awe it’s nothing

At least that is what I am hoping and praying. About two or three months ago I noticed a lump under my arm. I thought it would go away. It didn’t. It grew to what feels like a golf ball under my arm.  I decided I had better mention it to my primary care doc. He said he would set me up for an ultrasound.

Ultrasound was today….hope I get results soon. I’m hoping it is just a benign cyst.

August 12 

Thank God! The tumor is 4.1X1.2X1.1.A Lipoma which is benign. 

Margie’s Mural

My sister Margie is my favorite artist. Her talent always amazes. When Erin was ten or eleven she wanted a room makeover.  I asked Margie if she would design and paint a farm theme mural for her walls. When she agreed I was elated! She spent weeks as time allowed. It was a big project!

As time passed Erin outgrew the theme and when Stephen went on to College she moved to his room and transformed it into something more suitable for a teenager.. Stephen didn’t seem to mind coming home occasionally on weekends or holidays to a barnyard. He may have taken some teasing  from friends who were over to play video games in his room. .But I had plans for that room!  I was adamant those walls would not be repainted! . It was going to be my escape room. My woman cave!  I would have a comfy chair and curl up with a book in there. That room was going to be my happy place. You simply cannot be sad in there!

Well eventually we were thrust into empty nest syndrome. Those who have experienced this will understand.  My heart wasn’t ready to make any changes. The kids were out, but I wanted them to still have their rooms should they come home for any reason.

Before long both were married. Soon I was welcoming my first grandchild, then another. Dennis and I were beaming with pride.

Turns out those toe headed boys have altered plans for that room. But  I don’t mind at all  It is the perfect play room!   As I sit back there on a quilt thrown over a toy trunk, I soak in the happy sounds of the boys playing and the serenity of the mural.

A few weeks ago we had the television in that room connected to our Directv service. Mainly so D could watch History channel on the main tv instead of Peppa pig, or Pup Patrol .As the Directv guy was installing the receiver box, he asked who had painted the room. He said it was amazing!  In fact, that is what inspired this blog. I wanted to share the joy.

So, thank you, Margie! That beautiful  mural is a blessing! And so are you!

Yelping Chihuahua!

20160605_211728Tonight I set fire and flavor to my hush puppies. I have not researched to find out if it has been done before. I have seen Jalapeno Hush Puppies which call for flour and corn meal.  I do not  add flour in these.

My Yelping Chihuahua’s were tasty!  I want to document exactly how I made these pups!



Yelping Jalapenos!

1 cup Self rising corn meal

1/4 cup buttermilk

1 egg

1/4 cup of olive oil

4 or five medium sized Jalapenos

and one thick slice of sweet onion chopped finely

1/3 cup extra sharp cheddar cheese grated

Heat about a quart and half canola or peanut oil in fryer.

In a medium bowl, mix together Corn meal, Buttermilk, oil and egg. Stir until mixed well.

Add onions, cheese and jalapenos.and stir until mixed well.

Form into balls just a little smaller than golf balls.

Place balls one at a time into hot oil and cook until brown. Remove from oil onto a plate lined with a paper towel.  Enjoy with your meal, or as an appetizer served with salsa.

These were not unbearably hot, but had a kick for sure..  The Jalapenos came from our garden and were picked this morning.  Beau counter surfed a couple of Yelping Chihuahua’s. He sprinted to the water bowl immediately. Let’s hope he’s cured of this naughty habit.









































Slim Slow Plan

January I started a weight loss plan. It is my endeavor to lose a pound a week until desired weight, then maintain that weight.  I am off course, but not by much. I am only a couple pounds from the goal of a pound a week. I am fitting into clothes that have not fit for a while. So I have definitely lost inches.  That is encouraging.  It is my desire to step it up a notch since the weather is getting  nice. I am sure to exercise more.  I can live on tomatoes and garden veggies. I hope the Deer leave us some from our garden. I am looking forward to reaping the rewards of Dennis’ hard work.

The main thing for me to focus on is portion control and eating healthy snacks.  I didn’t gain this weight overnight. It crept up on me.  A pound here and there, then suddenly I realized I was way out of control. I feel I am in control now. The weight will eventually come off.  And this way is not mentally stressful.  I embrace this plan..
May 23, Update:
I’m stuck. I’ve hit a plateau. I am steady holding at 182. I am confident I will not gain my weight back, but I am going to have to increase my exercise to lose more. I am going to try to get into the 170’s in June. I could reach my goal weight by July! That is exciting! I’ve lost inches. I am wearing my size 12 jeans and shorts. Went from 16 to 12.

Update: I am 10 lbs away from my original goal. I am going to continue on my plan. Next update January 1, 2017. Hopefully with before /after pics.