Monday, August 31, 2015

The Joy of Multitasking

                    The Joy of Multitasking

I've been multitasking all day. I'm the person who can do a load of laundry while cleaning a bathroom as I'm taking a shower with a phone conversation on the other side of the shower door. 

Yep that was me this morning. I had just gotten my shower ready to get into and my phone rang. I left it on speaker the entire time I showered, cleaned the shower and started a load of laundry. Why did I do this? And who was on the other line that wouldn't be offended because I was doing this? Well that's a story now isn't it. 

This morning my phone rang much the same as it does every morning. Usually it's from a number unknown to me and since I get so many phone calls wanting to sell me everything from janitorial supplies to printer ink for my home based business, I usually let it go to voicemail. I decided to answer it this morning because it's Monday, I felt like it, I just wanted to see what they were trying to sell me today, or maybe I just had a feeling that this was a call I couldn't ignore. It was priceless.

I answered the phone as I usually do with unknown callers, Design Styles by Deborah, how may I assist you today? Now to be completely honest with you I thought I was talking to a real person, the computer voice was that real, so kudos to the company on that one. But I, being the person I am, hate talking to computers. I really hate talking to computers that I don't know the company they are affiliated with. So by the time I figured out it was a computer I decided to have some fun. 

The computer proceeded to ask me if I was me. I looked in the mirror just to make sure. There's more of me than there used to be, but yes, still me.  So I said yes. 
Okay. Are you still living at your address. I went outside checked the numbers on the house. Yep this is where I live. So I said yes. 
Okay. Since I've confirmed that you are the person I'm trying to reach, can I ask you a few questions? 
Sure. That's when I figured out it was a computer. It didn't understand my response. 
*Rubs hands and shouts for joy.
I'm sorry I didn't understand you, can you repeat that? 
Yes. But first I have a question for you. Who is this? 
Holiday Travel. 
Okay, proceed. 
Have you ever traveled out of the United States?
Have you ever used the services of a travel agent?
Do you have a passport?
Do you have a credit card?
It sounds like you are qualified to receive this free offer. Would you like to hear about it?
We would like to offer you a free cruise to the Bahamas. You would only be responsible for the port fees of $69.00 per person. This is a wonderful opportunity to visit the Bahamas on a luxury cruise ship for only $69.00 per person in port fees. Would you be interested in this offer. 
Okay let me transfer you to one of our travel specialists. Please hold until someone comes on the line. 

Sadly I ended the call right then. Not for the reasons you might think but one of my own in addition to the ones your thinking. I have been to the Bahamas. I hated the Bahamas. I will never go to the Bahamas again. EVER. It was a steaming mass of humanity, sweat, and a huge rock pile that only offered a Straw Market for entertainment on one island and a trip to view all the rich peoples vacation homes on the other. 

Imagine if you will, A giant bale of hay with tunnels cut into it miles deep that only has one way in and one way out. Then add the fact that these tunnels are filled with "shops" much like those found in a flea market. Remember we are still inside a bale of hay. The only opening is the one we came in. The walkways are only large enough for one person at a time. There is no going back the way you came in. To someone who is claustrophobic, this was a living nightmare. It took me days to find my way out of that hay cave and by the time I did I had been manhandled by more humanity than lives in my current hometown. I wanted a shower, a nap and a Xanax in no particular order. 

The other island was just as bad but in a different way. We thought we were going to see the sights of the island. Yeah, we saw Oprah's house, P-Diddy's house, etc. you get the picture. Plus the tour guide went on to tell us the names of the people who care for the houses and their salaries and why it was such a great job. Really. 

Needless to say I passed on the Bahamas trip.  

Have a laugh today. I did.

Until next time. 

Sunday, August 23, 2015

The Joy of Friends

Best Friends Forever

I have friends that I have known since I was born. When we get together it's almost as if we haven't been apart. It's often said that good friends can go years without seeing each other but the love is still there. I felt that last night, again, it wasn't the first time I'd felt the love embrace me and it wont be the last. But the feeling of seeing an old friend is like no other. 

Friends are like small treasures we pick up in our lifetimes and lock away in our hearts until we see them again. We had a great supper and talked for almost 3 hours. It was priceless time. Time to make new plans to see each other again, to hold each other up for those 3 hours, it was time to just be us and the rest of the world fell away. 

It always reminds me just how precious your friends are. They love you unconditionally and expect nothing more from you than you can give them. They ask for noting more than your time and give you as much of theirs as you are willing to take. 

We both love to scrap book so this winter when it's cold and we have nothing else to do we are going to scrapbook.  I have so many things to go into a scrapbook that I could easily make 20 of them. But the really funny thing is, I have made them for everyone in my family, 8 of them, and have never made one for myself. Its's a funny thing why we never do for ourselves what we've done for others. Well this is my year. I am going to make my wedding book, and my honeymoon book. Lance and I have been married almost 9 years so I think it's time.

I also have photos and memories of all of the cruises we've been on. I've lost count of the number of them but I know we're close to being platinum level on carnival. Those memories alone will fill a few scrapbooks.

We are going to go on a long vacation this fall from Texas, through New Mexico, to the Grand Canyon, then to Las Vegas, over to Los Angeles to support, "The Salute to Cancer Survivors Cruise." Which is 7 days, then it's off to San Diego for some much  needed cultural education. Tucson will be our next stop, to visit with Lance's family and then it's back to LA for another small cruise but this time with Lance's Mother Marty with us. This time it's 5 days.

Then we go back to Tucson, spend the night and drive home back to Texas the next day. I hope I find lots of great things to use in scrapbooks, the children's books I'm writing and that I just have fun on this new adventure. Whatever happens I'm sure I'll have plenty of stories to tell about it.

Til next time.......


Thursday, August 6, 2015

The Art of being Joyful


                                     The Joy of Children

Have you seen a bunch of children playing outside, in the street, laughing, having a good time?
Have you seen them lately? I did just yesterday. From my front window and my back yard. Children outside playing. It was such a joy to watch them. It was almost as if we had gone back to the times when children played outside. When we made up our own games. We could do anything our imagination would think of.

I was lucky to not only have Cindy and Pam but also Jimmy, Lynda, Ginger, Bobby and a bunch of friends. Pam, Cindy and I were all the same age plus we were cousins so we were born playing together. Jimmy and Lynda are also cousins but they were a bit older and would sometimes play with us. Bobby, my baby brother, and Ginger, were smaller so we had to be careful with them. Scott was kind of in the middle of Bobby and Ginger but we all cared for each other and we all had so much love.

We played outside where we built forts or had fights in olive trees with the olives as ammunition. I remember one time we got carried away, Jimmy and Lynda were in one tree, Cindy, Pam and myself were in another tree. Jimmy shot an olive toward our tree with the aim of a true marksman. He hit me right between my eyes with that olive and I went over backwards and fell right out of that tree. I hit the ground so hard my Grandma came running outside screaming for my Grandpa. Jamesy, JAMESY, HURRY UP ONE OF OUR BABIES FELL OUT OF THE TREE..

Of course I was fine. I was a kid. Kids don't get hurt falling out of trees onto grassy surfaces. I just got the wind knocked out of me. Of course we were banned from the trees after that and let me tell you that if we got caught....I don't even want to think about it.

We lived in a small mining community called San Manuel. It's located in The southern portion of Arizona. As kids we played in the desert. It was a second home to us. It was full of incredible things like cactus and devil horns and blister bugs. Of course the devil horns only resembled a devils horns. They were actually a seed pod for one the the trees in the desert. I'm not sure which one. When you are a kid you don't really care about those things. We played with horny toads and big bright green june bugs. We would catch them put a string on their leg and fly them like kites. We always let them go when we were done playing with them. We also had bats that would come in after dark. My Mom was always telling us that they would get in our hair. Well we weren't allowed out after dark so we never knew if a bat would get in our hair our not. We always made our own fun. We used our imaginations and became whoever we wanted to be. Life was easy then. If only we could go back for a few days and live those good times over again.

Those were the good things about life in that small town. The downside was often the town itself. The mine was underground and had its own railroad system and its own smelter. At that time of course the EPA was nowhere in sight and so for years we all breathed sulpher smoke from the twin stacks that belched it out all day every day. When the barometric pressure got just right it would blanket the town in a smoke so thick you couldn't see much less breathe. This stuff would literally burn you lungs when you breathed it. But those were the only times I can think of that were hard.

I was always so easy for us as we were all right there in the same town. We didn't know what it was like to be away from each other. Until one of us did. Oh we still got together on major holidays but eventually we all grew up and moved away. Even now, I feel like an island unto myself. I lived in my current home town with my Mother, Sister and Brother. My sister got married and moved for school and settled three hours south of me. My brother did the same and moved 2 hours north of me. Then he to decided to move to where my sister was, so now he is also 3 three hours south of me. My Mother who had to go into assisted living last year, also now lives 3 hours south of me. The rest of my family is scattered to the four winds.  But we all still talk on the phone, or on Facebook and are all still very much a part of each others lives.

Til next time,

Have a joy filled day.

Maci and the Dandelion

I have recently started on a new venture. I'm writing children's books and would love to share a short story I wrote just for fun. Please enjoy and if you know anyone with children who would like some cute stories about great critters, please direct them to my page on Amazon.  



My family was gathered, at what would be the last time at my Mom’s Kitchen/Dining room table. Since she only had a dining room table and her kitchen wasn’t large enough for a table, this was the place to be when we had a family gathering.

My niece,  Maci, who was 5 at the time, was always busy. Busy tormenting her brother, busy begging for a story or just  busy wandering around looking at things in Grandmas house. Today she was busy opening things. She came upon a basket with a lid on it. It was a small basket my Mom used for random things. A stray button, or a lost paperclip. Well at one time, Maci decided it needed to house a dandelion.

I guess at some point she had put a flower in the box so it would dry out and Mom could still remember the flower that Maci gave her. Of course when she gave Mom the flower had been many months ago. It was winter now, and no flowers had been growing for a long time.

 So the dandelion did what dandelions do, it turned into a puff ball of seeds. Of course Maci, like all children, love dandelions.  This one was no exception. She sat at that kitchen table, took a deep breath and blew those seeds right into her face.

  It was impossible not to laugh. The look on her face was priceless. A combination of awe, shock and fear covered her entire body. Of course everyone was laughing and finally she laughed with us. Her brother, Bryson, who was 2 at the time, just looked astonished. I’m sure it was his first experience with a dandelion. 

This is where my writing comes from. These little people who are so excited by everything around them. Everything  they touch becomes something new and different and exciting.  I try to remember what it was like when I was that age. I see the world through their eyes for a moment and realize just how much I’ve been missing.