Monday, January 22, 2018

Guilty or Not?

This is Day 16 of the 2018 edition of the 20 Days of Chill writing challenge hosted by P. J. at A ‘lil HooHaaPlease join us this month on our writing journey. Today's prompt is Guilty Pleasures.

A guilty pleasure is anything you partake of or join in that prompts you to say (or think) I probably shouldn't, but what the heck!

Image Source: Scott Ableman
Most of my guilty pleasures are food-related, most specifically to sweets. I don't have real sweet tooth and am not constantly craving chocolate, or pies or cake or even ice cream. That said, I do love me some Krispy Kreme doughnuts, after all they were founded right here in my home town. 

When the Hot & Now sign is lit, there is some serious goodness going on inside, and like a couple of kids we get our doughnuts and sit and watch the doughnuts going through the phases: rising, frying and getting an icing bath before being plucked off the belt and into to-go boxes. People line up for these tasty confections.

The other thing that makes my taste buds cry out for more is pecan pie, and not just any pecan pie, but the recipe my mom used. I still have the clipping of the recipe from way back, probably printed in the Journal more well over 50 years ago. I never tasted a better pecan pie. Given that it's about the highest calorie pie in my repertoire, I only make two per year around the holidays, and they are typically shared with family and friends which limits my caloric burden.

What are some of your guilty (or not) pleasures?


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Friday, January 19, 2018

Eli Asks Why?

This is Day 15 of the 2018 edition of the 20 Days of Chill writing challenge hosted by P. J. at A ‘lil HooHaaPlease join us this month on our writing journey. Today's prompt is Why Ask Why?

My first thought on why ask why was - why not? If you don't ask, you will never know. Not that everyone would be forthcoming with an answer.

For instance, my friend Eli, (remember him?) has this strange habit of disappearing into thin air. You read that right. He just spontaneously becomes invisible. Now if you were to ask him why he was there one minute and invisible the next, what do you think he would say? "Uh...I'll have to get back to you on that."

Eli seeks out the only person who can answer him when he asks WHY?

"Why did I suddenly become invisible? I had to leave Paul to face that madman at the bar, not that he didn't deserve itwhy can't he keep his mouth shut? Plus I had to walk home because an invisible man can't drive," Eli exploded at his mother, who was fortunately in her human state, as Eli would have felt even more ridiculous having this conversation with a bird. 

"Can you tell me why, and then maybe how? I need to know. I can't risk randomly disappearing in public like that. Imagine what my boss would say."

"Take a breath," said his mother calmly, "and I'll try to explain. You've always know that you...that we...were different. I had hoped my stories and your dreams would prepare you."

"For what?" Eli asked skeptically.

"For your new powers," she stated, as if that were sufficient explanation.

"I'd say that the preparation was seriously lacking," responded Eli sarcastically. "I had no idea beyond the fact that my mother is a part-time bird princess."

She sighed, "You are inherently magical, as am I. Back at the bar when you wished you were invisible, you became invisible. It was a fear response. You feared for Paul, and for yourself. Each time you wished you were invisible, the power built until you ceased to be seen. In the beginning, our powers are a response to an intense feeling, and difficult to control," she explained.  "I know it was a shock, and I wish you could have known what was happening."

"In time, you gain control of your power and make it work for you. I do not know why you have been given the power of invisibility, but I'm sure there is a reason. Perhaps there is something new on the horizon for you. Another thing you should know is that your powers grow, or advance, with time, and as you master one power, another will begin to appear. 

"Any more questions?" She asked.

"What other powers are there? Will I suddenly find myself leaping tall buildings, stopping locomotives? What am I...like Superman?"

"I just had to ask, didn't I?" thought Eli. "Now what?"


The previous adventures of Eli:
Birdman


If you enjoyed this post, please leave a comment. I would love to hear your thoughts.

Thursday, January 18, 2018

Ten Things That Make Me Happy

This is Day 14 of the 2018 edition of the 20 Days of Chill writing challenge hosted by P. J. at A ‘lil HooHaaPlease join us this month on our writing journey. Today's prompt is 10 Things that make you happy.

Okay, finally an easy prompt. With all the fussing and complaining you hear today about how messed up everything is, regardless of what side of the fence you're on, it should still be easy enough to list ten things that make you happy.

It doesn't have to be huge or outstanding. It doesn't even have to cost money. It could be as simple as a hot cup of coffee on a cool morning, or your dog or cat greeting you at the door. There are so many things I could list, but here are what first came to mindin no particular order.
  1. Going to the beach
  2. Potatoes (my favorite food)
  3. Hearing the birds sing
  4. Going for a walk on a beautiful day
  5. A glass of chilled Chardonnay
  6. Watching it snow
  7. Hanging out with friends
  8. Head butts from our cat
  9. A warm blanket
  10. Cool sheets
  11. Bonus: My husband, but that is a given after 30+ years together.
This is a random sampling of things that make me happy. What makes you happy?


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Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Let It Snow...Or Not

This is Day 13 of the 2018 edition of the 20 Days of Chill writing challenge hosted by P. J. at A ‘lil HooHaaPlease join us this month on our writing journey. Today's prompt is Let it snow (or not).

If you live in the South you understand this concept very well. If you're from the North and think it never snows here, it does. It is just not as predictable here. With modern technology and advanced forecasting, most weather sources will give a 10-day forecast. Unlike years ago, when we had one forecast which we either got in the morning paper or saw on the daily weather report on TV, we now have weather news that is updated 24/7. 

What that means is that the forecast fluctuates more than a politician's double-talk. What you read this morning may not be true by lunch time. So when you look at the long-range forecast and see the "S-word" (snow), don't start making or cancelling plans based on that. The snow will likely be in and out of the forecast many times before you actually get the snow...or not.

Snow is indeed in the forecast for the day of this post. By the time it is up, we will know whether we got snow or not.

Update: We got SNOW!




Santa, is that you?



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Tuesday, January 16, 2018

Lessons Learned

This is Day 12 of the 2018 edition of the 20 Days of Chill writing challenge hosted by P. J. at A ‘lil HooHaaPlease join us this month on our writing journey. Today's prompt is What I learned in school.

School is a place of learning, and that is not limited to what we glean from textbooks. We learn about life and how to function with others. Some of those lessons are harder than the scholarly endeavors.

My Brain in School!
Things I learned:
  • That it is not easy being the new kid in school, and not everyone will be your friend.
  • Not to raise your hand to answer a question. Getting the answer wrong is not a big deal for most, but I was embarrassed and did not raise my hand after that. I think I was in the second grade at the time.
  • I could not sing. We had a music teacher at the school where I was the new kid. She made everyone memorize and sing the "hymn of the month". Solo! More embarrassment. Fortunately, it was only that one year then I guess she retired.
  • Not all teachers are good teachers. I had one teacher who taught math and probably science. He said anyone who would stay after class would get the answers to the next day's math test. I was not good at math, so of course I stayed. The tests in the other class was pre-recorded and we had pieces of paper numbered down the side and four columns of circles. He played the tape of the questions and gave four choices. We filled in the corresponding circle.
  • My history teacher dictated sentences and told us what to underline. The tests were the exactly what he dictated, so if you were good at memorization, you passed the tests. I passed the tests. What did I learn?
  • I learned that extra credit is very helpful if you are doing poorly in math. Often it counted as a test; you do it and you get 100%. Win!

    Many people complain about the quality of education in our public school systems and there may or may not be justification, I don't know. What I do know is that most of the above experiences were in a private, Christian school, which I attended for five years. The school was growing and each year they added another grade. At the end of the 10th grade, I made the decision I was going back to public school, and there was a senior high school just a couple miles from my house that I could drive to.
What I learned there?
  • I learned that I could choose classes. I had never had that option before. We were told what the classes were and we took them all, which is why I learned to type at 14 and had three years of French.
  • I learned that if you were late getting back from lunch, the good parking spaces were taken and you had to park at the swimming pool.
  • I learned that didn't like accounting, and after all my years of typing (I was good and fast), that manual typewriters made it look like I couldn't type at all. It was embarrassing to get a mediocre grade in something I was really good at.
  • I learned that I loved shorthand, and was good at it, too. 

Lest it sound as if I did not learn anything, I got the basics in math by the end of the 5th grade, and my typing skills helped keep me employed for 19+ years. I even had occasion to use my rusty middle school French to order some pastries in a small French bakery. I did not enjoy school, but I never failed a class and got through it with a reasonable education.

What was your school experience like? Feel free to share in the comments if you wish.


If you enjoyed this post, please leave a comment. I would love to hear your thoughts.

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