Friday, January 22, 2021

Wandering Thoughts

 Wandering thoughts are sometimes good and sometimes not so good. In my weekly Bible Study, we had an introductory workshop on a book about Mindful Self Compassion. In one of the chapters, the author speaks of thoughts. She says to remember that thoughts are not facts, and that they should be let go. Oftentimes, this concept is hard to accomplish. Also, the author reminds us that sometimes we say ugly things to ourselves that we would never, ever think of saying to another person. We are now studying a book called Try Softer. This book focuses on compassionately listening to our own needs, so that we can move on in life with gentleness to ourselves. She also reminds us of the scripture from Mark 12:31 that says, Love your neighbor AS you love yourself. We often forget the part about AS YOU LOVE  YOURSELF. Well, I forget that part. 

So, I am trying really hard to be nicer to myself when my thoughts are wandering. I am trying to be nicer to myself when I drop something, or break something, or when I am alone thinking about the day and what I am doing or not doing. It seems that living in retirement is something that takes an adjustment in thinking, as well as a way of life. You change from doing so much for others and thinking of what you are to do every minute for others, to thinking about you and what you are going to do throughout the day. It is hard to learn how to take it slow and remember that it is okay to do one little thing at a time, rather than rush to accomplish numerous tasks in a few minutes or hours. 

I often like to go to the city lake and watch the variety of birds flying around or swimming. This past Sunday, there was a pelican swimming in the middle of the lake with some Canadian geese! I am not sure where he came from, as I have never seen a pelican there before. There were also two herons. They are really beautiful when their wingspans are out while they are flying. The Canadian geese also looked beautiful, as they flew right across the water with their necks stretched way out. There were also a lot of mallard ducks, with their pretty, green, shiny markings. Usually there are more of the big, black and white Muscovy ducks than regular types of geese and ducks. There were some really pretty snow white ducks swimming around, also. Those ducks are usually scared away by the big Muscovy ducks. Also, there were lots and lots of seagulls flying around. Watching these birds is very calming. Experiencing nature is an awesome thing.

Yesterday, I got really brave and went to Walmart and Sam's. It has been a long time since I walked around a Walmart store. Sam's is not as scary of a place to be in, since it is so big and spread out. Actually, Walmart was not so scary yesterday. Although a lot of cars were in the parking lot, there were not many people walking around in the store. I suppose that particular store is large enough so that people can be spread around in different areas. So, I felt pretty good about that accomplishment of going shopping.

Bike rides are a wonderful thing for me. It has been two weeks since I have been able to ride. The weather has not been conducive to getting outside and riding. It has been too cold. My three wheeler is a blessing to me, as it helps me exercise and get out in the sunshine. My cousin and I were finally able to get out on Wednesday, and we rode about 7 miles. We went out yesterday, but the rain cut our ride short. If the rain stays away today, I will get out and ride for a while.

Thoughts...they can be good, or they can be not so good. They can be helpful, or not so helpful. Either way, we all have them. We just have to learn how to keep them in check, productive, and helpful. 

Have a great day!

Friday, January 8, 2021


     Christmas lasts a long time in my house. We have always left up our Christmas things until after January 6th, which is Epiphany. I enjoy seeing the decorations. One year, I actually left everything up until April. That year, a lot was going on. Things were so busy that there was no real time to take anything down or put anything away. It was kind of fun, actually. This year, my decorations went up early. I started before Thanksgiving, which is something that I have never done before. I always take at least a week to get everything out and up. This year, I did it all in one day! Actually, there were a few things that were still waiting to find a place! They never did find it, though, HA!  

     I took pictures last year, but they didn't get shown. So, I am going to try to put some on here this year. I started writing this entry when they were all still up. Since then, I have taken everything down and put all of the items into their respective bins. Don't ask if the bins are put away, because they are not! At least everything is down and other things are put back into place. 

     My pictures do not look very clear on the blog, but I wanted to share them anyway

     The first picture is of the mantle. This year, I actually took down all of the things that are normally on there, and I only have Christmas items displayed. 

    There is a new addition to my Willow Tree Nativity set. I found Zampognaro, a shepherd with bagpipes. So, he is a nice addition to the scene. I left my dried Jasmine flowers on the corner of the mantle. They look much better in person!

     I was also able to purchase a new tree. It is a slim, 7 foot tree. My older one was wider, and it was always hitting things as it turned around. I have a revolving tree stand that I just love. It is nice to be able to see the whole tree, as it spins around and around, rather than just seeing one side! I have to fold up my curtain, though, or it will get caught in the tree and go around and around with the tree. Then when it gets totally wrapped around, the tree stops!

      I have these traditional, European Santas that were given to me by my Daddy. He loved to find things like these Santas. I love them! My musical Christmas snow globes are also on my little server buffet.

     I have a small, glass nativity that I bought a long time ago. It came with a small mirror to go underneath the pieces. That mirror broke a long time ago. I also have two small nativities that are carved out of wood and a small, Precious Moments nativity. One of my big, musical snow globes is also a Nativity scene.

     I also put my advent wreath on the mantle. I lit it throughout the season of Advent, however I did not leave the flames going for very long at a time. The old, plaster walls are not really conducive to candles! 

      The New Year came in without any fuss or bother, so that was nice. Our weather has gone crazy, so it was very warm for a New Year's day. It felt like spring or summer, really. The air conditioner actually had to be used for a while, in order to get the stuffiness out of here! Since then, we have winter one day and summer another day. So far this year, though, everything is going well. The best part about the new year is that I do not have to go to work! I am still enjoying my second year of retirement, and I am still learning the art of slowing down. I enjoy my peaceful time just doing what I want to do when I want to do it! 

     Take it easy, be safe, be careful, and have a GREAT DAY!!



Wednesday, December 2, 2020

The Art of Slowing Down

Moving slowly is not something that I can normally accomplish. I am learning, though. After being in the teaching profession for over thirty years, I was used to running, rushing, and doing everything at a very quick pace - at home and at work. I am now in my second year of retirement, and I am doing a little better about not rushing so much. I am finally being able to sit down sometimes when I eat. Well, breakfast is usually a little relaxed. Lunch is still up in the air. At that time of the day, the rushing is mostly in full force. I normally fix a sandwich and eat while moving through the house. I am not sure why, though. Daily household chores that were done in a running mode are now slowed down to a slow jog. It is hard to realize that I actually have time to do things around here without rushing. I was used to doing everything in one day, usually on Saturday morning, in between writing lesson plans. Now, I can do things a little bit every day. Even a trip to the grocery store can now be slower paced. I enjoy walking up and down each aisle looking at things. The past two weeks have been spent getting ready for Christmas. I bought a new tree at Hobby Lobby and got it put up. Then this weekend, all of my decorations were brought down from the attic. It has taken all week to get the things out and put up around the living room. I am not finished, yet, but everything is out and ready to be put somewhere. Getting started before Thanksgiving is not something that I have ever done before. I am moving slowly at this activity. There were years when I only had one day to get it all done! That would wear me out! Luckily, I cleaned out all of my tote boxes last year and threw away all of the old broken pieces and things that were not really in good condition. So, I didn't have to go through all of that stuff this year. That saved a lot of time. I still try to ride my bike every day, weather permitting. My cousin and I go pretty far sometimes. We rode over 7 miles the other day. It was really cold and windy that day, but we made it! We have found some pecan trees on our ride, so we pick up nice pecans sometimes. We see lemon trees and orange trees some places, too. We also found a grapefruit tree on our ride. This yard also has a big pecan tree. One day, the lady of that house told us that we could get as many grapefruit and pecans as we wanted. She was raking up a lot of pecans that day. The guy across the street from her has a pecan tree, too, and he told us that we could also get pecans from his tree. Pecans are very expensive in the stores, so it is nice to be able to get some fresh ones on our ride. I have two pecan trees at my house, too. This year is the first year that they are big enough and ripe enough to eat! YES! Once I get things more organized around this house, I will be able to slow down even more. After so many years of teaching, I have accumulated tons of books and supplies. The house is pretty much overrun with those items. Once I have the time to get through all of those things and get them out of here, then things will be easier to organize. I do not want to throw away all of those things. Maybe I can find some organization that might be able to use them. A lot of money has been spent over the years to purchase my teaching supplies. I just do not want to throw it all away. Speaking of moving slowly, this post has been slow in getting written. I started it a few weeks ago. Each time that I start writing, I feel as though I get off of the topic. I probably did that today, too, but I am going to try to finish writing it. The weather today is supposed to be rather cold - well cold for Savannah! We do not have snow or anything like that, but the temperature is supposed to be in the 30's. Hopefully, I will get out a bit today and get a few things that I need. Do you ever go to the store and buy all sorts of things, get home, and realize that you forgot the one or two things that you actually went to buy? HA! I do that a lot! So, I will go out today and try to remember the one thing at Publix that I needed for banana pudding, and then something else at another store. So, slowing down is nice. It is so nice that I actually make more than one trip to get things that I need! HA! Is that the art of slowing down, or is that the reality of getting older and being forgetful?? Whichever it is, I can handle actually having the time to return to places to get what I need. Take it easy today, and have a great day!!

Sunday, October 18, 2020

My Little Barista

My little 6 year old granddaughter surprised me the other day. I was at my daughter's house one morning to take their little dog home to them. I had been keeping him while they were out of town. My granddaughter stepped up to the coffee maker and proceeded to make her mom a cup of coffee. She was very businesslike. She got the perfect cup, turned on the coffee maker, got the K-cup, and pushed the correct button for the size of coffee that her mom wanted to have. Then, she got the cream and sugar. She very precisely measured out the correct amount of sugar, poured in the right amount of cream, stirred it all up, and took it to her mom. Then ever so professionally she asked, "Grandma, would you like me to make you a cup of coffee? I can make tea, too." I just about fell over! She was just too, too cute! I told her that I already had my coffee for the day. She seemed disappointed, so I asked her if she had any decaffinated tea. She did, so I let her make me a perfect cup of hot tea! She was very happy! My tea tasted very good, too!! So, I now have my very own, personal barista!!

Monday, October 12, 2020


This week, I had the opportunity to visit with two of my friends. In today's world, that type of visit hasn't been happening. Friday, I drove down to the beach to see my friend from Tennessee. She and her husband came down to Tybee for a week. I haven't seen them in about two years. We took a nice, long walk on the beach and caught up with our families and just enjoyed being together. A few years ago when they came down, one of our hurricanes made it so they had to turn right around and go back to Tennessee. So we didn't get to visit. Yesteterday, I was able to visit with another friend whom I haven't seen since before the quarantine. She came by my house, and we just sat and talked together for a good little while. These two visits might seem plain and simple, but they were very important to me. Having friends is important, and having true , close friendships is even better!

Friday, September 25, 2020

Morning bike rides, Bible study at the lake, and Reading on the beach

Early morning bike rides are the best. Riding in the morning gives me a great start to my day. I actually went to the beach one day this week and just sat there for a couple of hours reading a short story. I haven't been to the beach all summer. Uh oh...It is September, not summer! oh well... Sometimes in the afternoon, I take a car ride over to the city lake and read my Bible study books. I just sit in the car, open all of the windows, enjoy the breeze, and read. There is a calming feeling about sitting there and studying. These things may not seem very exciting, but these small activities help to keep me grounded.

Tuesday, September 8, 2020

Jasmine all around

Jasmine is so pretty with its delicate white blossoms hanging over fences and in trees. The beautiful scent of the jasmine flowers is just awesome. This year, there are many beautiful little jasmine vines hanging over my back fence and on my garage. Each year, I have seen these vines all over the neighborhood, but they have never been in my yard. This year, I have a lot of jasmine. Each morning, I bring some inside to make the living room have a bit of outside beauty, not to mention a sweet, soft aroma. The flowers do not last too long inside, but they are pretty just the same. Sometimes, they will dry in the vase. Then, I can have a nice dried arrangement for another time. Jasmine, jasmine all around...I am glad that some finally came around! Each day now, I am going outside and bringing in fresh jasmine to put in the vase on my lighthouse table.
This picture is of the jasmine that is all over the side fence.
In this picture, you can see the jasmine going up over the top of the fence.
Jasmine loves to climb trees! It is just beautiful!!
I need to hurry up and get more jasmine to bring inside, because it is starting to go away. I hope that more will come back, after this first batch is gone. It is so pretty! Have a great day!