Monday, February 27, 2023

The Brown Eyed Girl Came for a Visit!


Yes, this is an old picture, because you know what...?

We forgot to take a new one!

Her visit the week before last was a bit overshadowed after the fact by having to put the dog to sleep the day after she left, but she came, we visited, we enjoyed each others' company, she went home. And she's doing so well. I couldn't be more pleased.

We worried she wouldn't make it as a huge snow system was working its way across Colorado early that week, but the severity lessened and the system shifted south just slightly and it all worked out.

She and I just hung out Thursday and Friday afternoon, chatting and watching movies. On Friday we went out for her birthday dinner and had presents. Her birthday isn't until the beginning of March, but she was here, so we celebrated.

Saturday and Sunday was just more hanging out and visiting, although she left Sunday, so that was a bit fraught since she got emails saying her flight was delayed even though the airport and airline website both said it was on time. 

She arrived home safe and sound, and all is well.

* * * * *

Now, let's fill out the rest of this post with a...

Miscellaneous Monday

...round of random tidbits. (it is Monday after all.)

* * * * *

In other news, our Dallas Stars are Central Division / Western Conference leaders. By the skin of their teeth. At some point I could swear I reported that my boys in Victory Green hadn't lost more than two games in a row...

Well, they went and lost five in a row with a demoralizing loss to the worst team in the league last week who posted a come from behind victory after being three goals down... The Stars did win in overtime this past Saturday, though they had to go to overtime to do it, but two points are two points.

If it weren't for the loser point in many of their recent losses (getting a point if making it to overtime even if you lose) and an excellent run at the beginning of the season, we'd probably be on the outside of the playoffs looking in.

** sigh **

* * * * *

Update on Me... 


Finally got back to the ortho doc. It turns out I have bursitis and labral tears in/on both hips.  The doc gave me an easy at-home exercise to do, prescribed an additional round of drugs as well as actual physical therapy. Fun times, we'll see how that goes.

It turns out I also have a bit of scoliosis. X-rays taken at my first ortho visit show a slight curvature. It's minimal and the ortho doc didn't seem too worried.

But I'm worried about it, so I bought a back brace that should help, and, bonus, will help with posture. It's probably related somehow, so helping one one will help both.

I really don't want to head into my 60s, 70s, and 80s with more medical issues than necessary, so this is the year to start addressing whatever crops up in a timely fashion.


I'm also, it turns out, ten pounds over my preferred weight. So, yesterday, I started on a keto-based detox regimen to a) kick start the weight-loss and b) purify my system a bit. 

I went back to a book I'd read (only?!!) two years ago that posits that hormones and stress play a larger role in weight gain/loss in woman of my age. So the detox should also help with that which will help with my emotions which should help with a lot of other things.

It's been a growing season in many areas of my life for the past year or so. Just trying to course correct a bit and keep moving forward.


I finally updated the goals list on the right side-bar column to 2023's version!

* * * * *

I've solidified the plan for DD's and my mini-road trip and booked the hotel. Our funding is still a little short at the moment, but we have two weeks from yesterday...

* * * * *

Our vet's office, to which we've been going for all the years we've lived in this house has been undergoing some decor updates. New foyer paint job and furniture. The back area where the exam rooms are was being painted when I was last in there. I imagine the exam rooms, too, will all undergo a face lift.

I'm glad they're doing well enough to do that.

Not that you care at all about my vet's office. :0)

Have a great week. See you Thursday.


Thursday, February 23, 2023

Over the Rainbow Bridge


We loved our girl the best we could, but love doesn't cure cancer, and this past Monday, we said good bye.

Rayna ~ 02/20/2023

She'd been in increasing pain, whining almost constantly, and not interested in her food unless we doctored it with tuna juice.

We had planned to wait until Saturday, but it didn't seem fair that after a week of being with at least one person 24/7, she'd spend her last week alone and miserable while I went back to work.

I'd taken Monday as a vacation day and DD was off for President's Day, so we took her in.

I know I shared a pic of young Rayna on Monday, but here are a few more from over the years....

Rest in pain-free peace, sweet girl...


Monday, February 20, 2023

National Love Your Pet Day


So Today is National Love Your Pet Day...a day to show your love and appreciation to the non-human family members. Not that true pet-lovers need a special for that, huh? I read something recently that said that sales at online pet retail sites is growing, so people are already splurging big time on the Fifis and Fidos in their lives.

But as this is a love your pet day post, let me share pics of my babies.

My dear sweet Rayna, you know. This is her when we first adopted her. So young, so dark-furred.

She's been a constant and loyal companion for a decade now, and the house is going to be strange place without her in it.

On the other hand, we've have two new fur babies in residence to fill the void a bit...

And it appears, much to my surprise, that I've never shared pictures of these two? I've searched through the archives of the blog images and can't find a single one.


Anyway... Here's Rascal, the little dog... He's a sweetie and a charmer. He still barks a lot because that's what little dogs do, I've been told. But we thank him for warning us of dangers and that usually quiets him fairly quickly.

He's in for a surprise trip to the groomer later--he needs his claws, er, nails trimmed.

And last but not least, our gentleman cat in residence... Waldo.

Waldo is a sweet old man, with a bit of a feisty streak. He can also be a little clueless, sometimes too fearless for his own good. He's a tall lanky cat--stands taller than Rascal, which amuses me.

And we learned, with the Brown-Eyed Girl's visit, that he has a very healthy fear of strangers. He's very affable and friendly with the usual residents, but he went into hiding while the Brown Eyed Girl was up and around during the day.

But as DD said--the last time a stranger came into his house, he ended up with major upheaval to everything he'd ever known and ultimately thousands of miles away in a new state and a new house. Who knows what his situation was before Mom adopted him. He may have some PTSD, poor guy.

If you're a pet owner, today's just an excuse to splurge on your finned, scaled, feathered, or furry friends.

Have a great week.


Thursday, February 16, 2023

What Would I Do With a Million Dollars?


Image courtesy of

My office mate came back from a networking group meeting and said they'd been asked, as part of that week's discussion, what they'd do with a million dollars.

That's always an interesting question, isn't it?

The usual things come to mind, right? Tithing, taxes, paying down debt, investing, giving to charity. Maybe buying a car or buying property.

But what else would you do?


I fell in love with the French Quarter while traipsing around the neighborhood back in late February of 2020 right before we went on our cruise, which departed from the "port" of New Orleans. As DH and I walked up and down the narrow streets, I saw, sadly, so many houses up for sale.

Of course, the whole city had been hit hard by Hurricane Katrina (most especially) back in 2005 and then again in 2017 by Hurricane Harvey. It really broke my heart to see the city still bearing the ravages soooo many years later.

A kernel of an idea was born during that trip, and it's burbled in my mind ever since. It could definitely use the likes of a million dollars or two...

I'd love to buy some (three or six or nine) properties in the French Quarter. Fix them up. Hire some folks to look after them. And rent them out as Air BnB or VRBOs.

Here are a few I found with a quick look on Zillow:

Some of these hide amazing treasure inside. They look a little "meh" from the outside, but when you see the interior, they are spectacular. Sometimes they even have courtyards and pools(!) hiding within the confines of the property lines. Those hidden oasis intrigue the heck out of me and tickle me pink.

I've gone on a few retreats over the last few years, and, while not much can compare to the house on Lake Conroe, for many reasons, I have an idea about what would make a place desirable enough for someone to plonk down their hard-earned cash to stay there.

So. That's one thing I'd do if I had a million dollars.

What about you...?

Monday, February 13, 2023

Tracking the Funding of a Trip

Buc-cee's Here We Come!

Image is mine from last year's trip to Alabama.

Since I'm working a no-spend challenge, I already knew I wanted to pre-fund the road trip DD and I want to make during her spring break mid-March. I mentioned that a week or two ago.

So...I borrowed an idea from another dear friend who loves and uses the Happy Planner system for all aspects of her life.

When we meet, those of us who keep meticulous track of our lives via paper and stickers usually share our progress since last we met...

So this dear friend had some new things going on in her planner and that was the tracking of the funding of trips and projects and even her new home.

Her visuals are much cuter than mine, which I won't share, because those are hers-- but I thought if I had a visual, it would help keep me focused and motivated to make this happen.

So I put together a collage, basically, and asked DD to make me some stickers specifically for this project.

Here's the "collage" and the stickers... Each sticker is worth $5. So when I save or earn $5 from somewhere I can apply it toward the trip. I put a sticker on the collage, and when I've applied all 60 stickers, I'll have funded the trip. It'll get easier and more exciting as I get rolling, I think. More stickers means more money found.

This may seem rather child-like, but so what?

If this is what it takes to help me pre-fund a trip, to help me keep my eye on the target, and add a little excitement and fun to my everyday life, then who cares?

I'll probably make some more of these as needed, but this is it for now.

What about you? Do you pre-fund larger purchases or work hard to pay them off after-the-fact?

Have a super day. Catch you next time.


Thursday, February 9, 2023

Captain's Log: Supplemental


My watch word for this year is ABUNDANCE...

For the last couple of Januarys (2021 / 2022), I was "assigned" words for the year via a Facebook meme.

Well, I've spent way less time on Facebook than in years past-- and I don't miss it at all, to be honest -- so no memes and no words.

Not that I needed help this year.

As I mentioned in the very first post of 2023, this is the year of abundance and working toward even more abundance.

The premise of the book where I got the word is that the universe is abundant and that there really is enough for everybody.

Okay, I'm in.

Abundance is my word.

The start of the year was abundant in some ways, as I mentioned last Thursday. But the thing about most of my posts is that they're begun a couple of weeks before they're posted. I work on them and they're finalized anywhere from a few days to a week before I set them to post.

As a result, things happen and circumstances change. And that was the case of last Thursday's post. It was finalized and scheduled several days before the 2nd. So that was a good week and a half / two weeks ago.

What happened in the meantime?? A couple of financial dings, some down days, life.

That is life. I get it.

On Monday--this immediate past Monday--I came across a video by YouTuber Rose Han titled "How I Made My First Million Using the Law of Attraction." So I watched. (And I bumped today's originally scheduled post to next week in order to write what you're reading right now... Hence the post's title and image.)

And guess what word popped up within a minute and a half?

Yep, that's right--ABUNDANCE.

One of the things Rose shared was how she used vision boards as a tool to keep her motivated. She looked at it all the time to remind her of the things she was trying to accomplish. And I realized I hadn't looked at my vision board in at least a week. I certainly wasn't looking at it "all the time." (It certainly wasn't jam-packed with as many images either, but that's another issue.)

I pondered a way that I could keep my vision board in better view--

I'd hung it on the inside of my home office door, but the only time I see it is if I'm in my office and the door is closed. Well that doesn't happen often. And then it struck me.

--I have some real estate that I see every single day. Whether I'm at home or whether I'm at the office. My computer monitor desktops.

Right now I have a lovely picture of rolling farm fields in Pennsylvania on both PCs. I love that image. It has a lot of green (my favorite color) and a beautiful blue, cloud-dotted sky (love those kind of days).

So now I'm working on a digital / electronic vision board to set as my desktop background for a while. That way I'll be reminded of the things I'm working toward all day every day.

The other thing that Rose talked about was the "Law of Attraction." How like attracts like...

I only researched the "Law of Attraction" a little bit and can't give you a good run-down on it yet, but I'll be Googling it further to see the best way for me to implement its tenets.

All that to say...I needed a reminder and a kick in the pants. And I got both. I didn't realize I needed them until I watched the video, but there you go. The universe is watching out for me.

Take care and have a great weekend.


Monday, February 6, 2023

Miscelaneous Monday


I missed a few topics in my January edition of Miscellaneous here's a bit of a catch up as well as some new random bits.

* * * * *

My oldest is coming for a visit on the 15th for a few days. I haven't seen her since Christmas 2021, although we chat via text a lot along with her soul mate and her sister. She's been living the good life, mostly, since taking up residence in the Centennial State, and it'll be good to see her again.

Her birthday is at the beginning of March, so we'll probably do a small b-day celebration while she's here. (Note to self: better put cake mix on the grocery list.)

* * * * *

We had a snow (ice) "week" last week. Everyone went home early on Monday, came in for a few hours early on Tuesday--for me to create and them to pick-up paychecks--before heading back home to work from home. Bad timing there, Mother Nature! And then worked from home Wednesday and half of Thursday, before returning to the office mid-day Thursday and all of Friday.

I used to be super excited about snow days, but when they go on for too long (what's too long? three days) then they muck up schedules and routines and aren't really worth it.

And also--the dogs, especially the little one, had a hard time navigating the ice rink that was our back yard. He just didn't have the weight to get any traction. Even Rayna's 50-ish pounds had a hard time with it.

* * * * *

Speaking of Rayna, she's still alive and kicking around. Although in the couple of weeks, she's had some rough days, and I'm wondering if this is the beginning of the end. If you remember, she was diagnosed October 10th, and I thought we'd have had to put her down by now.

Rayna sleeping in the little dog's bed one day, while DD and I were watching TV in the living room.

Rest assured, I'm always on the watch for her mental and physical well-being. I don't want to put her down prematurely, but I don't want her to suffer unnecessarily either. So we're being vigilant to her indications of "okay-ness" vs pain / miserableness. I don't believe she's quite there yet, but it may be looming. If you're a pet owner who's faced this kind of thing, you know what I'm talking about. The animal will tell you when it's time to go.

Most of the time she's back to sleeping on Sonshine's old bed that became Mom's bed, with a mattress upgrade from futon mattress to regular mattress. It's no doubt way more comfortable for her.

Now instead of having run of the kitchen and my home office while I'm at work, we've given her the run of the back of the house with access to that bedroom. It has a big window and faces south, so lots of bright light during the day to help keep her mentally peppy as well.

* * * * *

In very belated news, Mom's house ended up not selling. Due to an issue of their own making (probably inadvertently, but nevertheless), the sellers were unable to come up with the full, agreed upon price. That was after they'd asked for two discounts. Which I had agreed to since I'd wanted to have that one major "thing" off my plate.

After realizing what they'd caused for themselves, they came back and asked for another drop in price. I just couldn't agree to that. It's cheaper for me to pay the bills for three or four months than to give up the amount of money they wanted me to.

But ugh.

* * * * *

I'd fallen off the de-cluttering wagon... but I'm trying to climb back on. I think I just forgot, what with the busyness of the holidays, but I want to keep going, keep simplifying, keep reducing the number of things I have to clean or keep track of.

I've penciled into my chore chart twice a week that I have to go in search of something to give away or throw away. I have a list and I keep it updated. I'm at 50-ish items for this go-round, which started October 2nd.

The goal is 100 items out of my house by the end of the first quarter. :0)

* * * * *

January was a tough month for me. As a business owner, there are all kinds of "end of year" things to do as well as "beginning of year" things to do. All of that on top regular monthly tasks. Add in the end of a fireworks season and the things that have to happen with that.

I was already pooped from the excitement and work of the holidays. And then there's me trying to wrangle plans for fresh start goals into submission as well as dealing with three fur babies, between whom I have to juggle time and attention.

* * * * *

Remember my no-spend challenge? I have several events on the books that I want to fund in advance, so there's another chain of tasks I've penciled in -- listing stuff Facebook Marketplace and eventually eBay and then shipping or delivering said items.

FB Marketplace has not been kind to me this go round. I've successfully bought two dryers for cheap that I've been extremely pleased with, but my foray as a seller rather than a buyer has been frustrating.

First, they rejected my listing of mom's walker--that she never used--because it falls under the "medical device" umbrella despite the fact that it doesn't diagnose nor treat nor attempt to cure any sort of condition.

Then I got duped into a Zelle scam. Stupid me. But here...

And then people keep offering me less money for my stuff. If I were willing to take less money (right now), I would have asked for less money. Grrrr...

* * * * *

Well, that's a decent list of randomness, wouldn't you say? I've revisited this post-in-progress several times hoping to remember any other bits and pieces I've wanted to share or document, but I'm tapped out for the time being.

Here's to a great week and a February as equally abundant as January. Take care.


Thursday, February 2, 2023

January Review ~ A Month of Abundance


Image courtesy of IMGBIN.

While I'm not quite swimming in gold coins yet, January was filled with some abundance:

  • time
  • energy
  • productivity
  • wealth

Are you wondering how? Well, certainly not in the way you would expect. But let's see...

I certainly wasn't pleased about getting woken up a full hour before my alarm went off several mornings from mid-month onward, but I got up and put that time to good use. I also found myself with small pockets of time to do random things.

For example--I took the "pre-lit" lights off my Christmas tree. They all died over the course of the last two Christmases, but the tree itself is still perfectly fine.

So before I put the tree into storage for the year, I decided to remove the dead strings of lights.

There were several days where I had time to kill, so I started in on those lights. I figured out the pattern of how the lights were strung and then gleefully took some sharp cutters and started snipping wires. It's not as tedious as I imagined, but it is mindless, so I just put on some TV and got several branches done in 45-minute increments.

Despite the early mornings and occasional later nights, my energy levels have been good. That one I can't entirely explain right now other than to say good sleep, good food, some exercise, and good productive days make you feel good and it's a self-perpetuating cycle.

As for productivity...well, the lists and the planners and the chore chart all helped, but so did the extra time, which fed the feel-good vibes from getting stuff done, which feeds the energy levels, which makes you want to cross more stuff off that to-do list and well, it's a self-perpetuating cycle...

And the literal wealth...well, that's kinda separate. We started a new investment program, which I won't go into detail about right now, but suffice to say, the value of our portfolio has increased. Which tickles me pink, which cycles that good energy back into the other things.

But this all needed a catalyst, right?

I think I figured out what it was. And it may cycle back to...

If you said Personality Strengths, you'd be correct. :0)

A couple of weeks ago, I received a newsletter from Chief Strengths guru, Becca, and she does a thing called "Dear Becca." People who are a part of her Strengths family, at any level, can send her questions and she'll answer the really impactful one or the mass-applicable ones in the newsletter.

Someone asked if particular Strengths, especially ones that are lower in the top-ten lineup can be more hungry than higher ranked Strengths. The question-asker said that she'd doubled her reading volume and, as a result, her writing output rose by 30% and asked if that tracked since input for her was "only 9th" and she had all those other really dominant Strengths at the top. The specific Strength she asked about was Input, which ranks 9th for her and which ranks 8th for me. We shared two other Strengths in the top ten...

Anyway, both the question and the answer really hit home for me. The answer was basically yes.

Now, Input as a Strength manifests itself in just the way you might think--it wants input. TV, radio, pod casts, books, articles, movies, etc...

I tend to read a lot and I listen to a lot of pod casts and I read a lot of hockey-related articles. And lately, I've been Inputting a lot more than I have in a while and certainly more than I was able to last year. Not only that, but my head space is clearer now. I can better absorb the information I'm taking in as well.

As a result, I'm feeling more energetic and more myself, which feeds the productivity, which feeds the feeling of well-being, which feeds the...

Well, you get my drift. :0)

I really need to get to those Strengths books I have lined up to read, don't I?

Have a great weekend. Catch you Monday.