Is Begging From Strangers On The Internet Now “In?”

The first time I saw an ad over the internet for a couple asking for money from complete strangers, all over the world, I thought it was a joke. I literally thought it was a spoof but it wasn’t April Fool’s Day so I didn’t understand it. Until I saw another ad asking people for money to pay their expenses to cover their credit card minimum. I’ve seen actual ads for couples asking people to donate for their fertility treatments, for their sick dogs and cats and yes, one for an ailing bird.

Money

My husband was laid off from his job10 months ago. He started looking Day 1 and hasn’t stopped. I am not able to work full-time due to physical limitations (numerous health conditions including Fibromyalgia, Kidney Disease, auto-immune disease, Hashimoto Thyroiditis, Syncope and Hypotension ) but even I am looking for part-time. We are not eligible for unemployment money. It never crossed my mind to put an ad on Facebook or anywhere on the internet to beg for money. Call me old-fashioned. When did this become a socially accepted use of media? Or, a personal standard?

I’m not judging (okay, I’m TRYING not to judge) but this is all so new for old-fashioned me. Is this the younger generation’s idea of problem solving? I sincerely hope not. So, believe me this blog post is NOT about asking for money. I would not do that. But, I am asking for a favor and while I don’t have high hopes I consider this networking because my husband gave me permission to put his résumé on my blog.

He does not want a hand out. We would not accept money to pay our bills. We would rather move (which we are talking about) anywhere he can find a job. Do I want to move? Not really. I have an elderly mother here and my sister, both twenty miles away from me, I’m in the middle. Our children go to SUNY schools.

Half Empty Or Half Full?

Half Empty Or Half Full? (Photo credit: MarkyBon)

I am not asking for pity but a connection would be lovely. The following link is my husband’s resume, please read it and pass it along if you know anybody. Anybody who is somebody is even better!

http://www.proj-mgt.com/dfriedmann.pdf

If you can find it in your heart to take a minute to read his résumé, we would greatly appreciate it. I’m not too proud to network for my family, that’s what families do, we stick together. We are trying to stay positive, truly. Today was rough, maybe tomorrow will be better.

Thank you for reading my blog and for any help you can give us.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Welcome To St. Croix, As If

Old Danish Customs House, Christiansted

Old Danish Customs House, Christiansted (Photo credit:

Dear VERY KIND, RICH PERSON,

Is it May yet? I know, I’m daydreaming. I know it isn’t May, its dull, depressing, December and I know pretty much everyone is on vacation except for me and my family. I am grateful for what I have, truly. However, I am a tiny bit envious of all who are vacationing in warm climates while my chronic, painful bones tighten up. In my mind I am trying to conjure up some images that A) might torture me for months or B) give me the impetus to get through the ugly, soggy mushy yet cold winter. Either way, it’s something to do.

I just want to talk. I don’t believe in miracles, trust me, like I didn’t really believe I would win the lottery but it’s fun to think about so here we go: It’s only December and just because we had one day, sorry, two days with 20 more seconds of light it doesn’t mean it’s time to celebrate and dance barefoot in the grass with flowers entwined in our hair. It’s twenty bogus seconds, that’s it. But, we take what we are given, no, there are no hot dogs on the grill or s’mores from the barbecue just quite yet. Get inside, it’s freezing.

We eat tomatoes that look and taste like wax, they are not even orange-red but some pale combination of yellow and green and plastic, utterly tasteless. The fresh fruit that we long for in the summer has whittled down to apples, oranges, a few mangy grapes, drooping from their spines as if they were just begging to be put out of their misery. Do these grapes really look like they have the will to live? No, poor things, just put them in the back and don’t let us witness their slow, disintegrating death, it’s just too sad.

The sky, again, is white and black, sometimes blended into gray. I’m staring into my yellow pillow that I bought to conjure up what I remember as sun but it doesn’t do the trick. “Surround yourselves with things you love” is not always easy. I love the ocean and sand and seashells but even my globe filled with delightful seashells and sand does not make me feel like I am on vacation in St. Croix, or any of The Virgin Islands, Mexico, or anyplace warm. I’m woefully stuck in reality.

Most people are away for this long holiday break to places I’ve never heard of much less been to. Families with a lot of money book places far in advance so they have vacations to look forward to, I envy them. I rationalize my thinking: if this was my norm, flying somewhere every break, would I take it for granted? I admit, I wouldn’t mind finding out.

In my mind, I’m vacationing in St. Croix, or Jamaica, Hawaii or Australia. These old weary bones that ache constantly would just have to settle in for the long flight and suffer, knowing that in the end, I would see skies a beautiful shade of blue, silky, soft sand and walking on the water’s edge. My only goal is to worship and enjoy the natural elements of life. Given the chance, my family and I can be packed in ten minutes and we thank you so very much.

English: St Croix

English: St Croix (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

A Food Fantasy And Then Some…

Fritos Logo

Fritos Logo (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

If I could, I would eat my way through my misery right now. I would start with bags of potato chips, the real kind and not those baked ones that hide anxiously in our cupboards, ashamed to see the light of day. Along side them would be sour cream and onion dip, one entire, big bowl, set right in front of my face and of course, I almost forgot, Fritos too. Fritos were a favorite childhood snack and I believe they would be so comforting to eat now. I’d have a chocolate shake to go with them.

It’s time to switch to pure sugar, trans fat, whatever fat, I really don’t care. My first stop is to get a jelly doughnut or two, and please don’t be skimpy on the jelly either, I just hate that. A lot of sugar on the top, yes ma’am and thank you so much, your smile is making me enjoy this trip even more. Thank you for not judging me. You are so welcome and here is your tip for your kindness. Little things mean a lot.

I hate alcohol so I wouldn’t even bother wasting my calories on that besides, nothing goes better with jelly doughnuts (and I’ve added double stuffed, fudge covered Oreos too) than a tall glass of ice-cold milk. My salivary glands are working overtime, if you must know just dreaming of these delicacies. No hating allowed, this is my fantasy so shut up, oh and by the way, I’ve just won $600 million dollars so whatever you have to say, say it to my accountant and lawyer who will be handling the money flow because we just don’t “do that” anymore.

Will I GIVE you money? You are certainly not shy, now are you? To those, who have stuck with me, been loyal friends, have treated me with kindness, you don’t have to worry. You know who you are. So, if I worked with you forty years ago and all of a sudden you remember that we were friends for one week, don’t bother.

The money is in the bank, my husband and I (I guess we’ll take the kids too) are traveling around the world, First Class, I might add. The Food is fabulous and plentiful. Our own chef is with us. My son, the carnivore has the biggest steak I’ve ever seen and my daughter the vegetarian has macaroni and cheese four different ways, one with imported bread crumbs on top. My husband and I dine on shrimp cocktail and I will have a platter of different little things or as we call it in my house “a smorgasboard” and my husband will also have a steak with french fries, extra crispy, please.

We will have our pastry desserts, chocolate for my daughter and husband and vanilla/fruit tarts for my son and myself.

Uh-Oh.

I miss my dog. Oh dear, even being this rich has problems? Darn. Nothing is perfect.Well, I guess I’ll crawl out of my bed, stop fantasizing and wake up from my self-induced dream. The dream is fading, the food fantasy is gone, I haven’t won the lottery. But, my husband is downstairs in his office, looking for a Computer Job, my college kids are home for their break to visit, I’m worried about my mom and my dog is lying across my feet and my troubles seem simple, well, most of them. I’m a home-body anyway. I’ll start my new book. I guess I can handle that, for now. I don’t have any choice.

Kindness: The New Normal

The Great Kindness Challenge Logo

The Great Kindness Challenge Logo (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Equating kindness with money is a complete misconception.You don’t need to make a grand gesture to be kind to someone. You don’t have to pay their entire bill at a restaurant when you don’t have enough money. It doesn’t mean writing a large check to a charity, you can send only what you can afford. It can cost nothing but a conscious thought.   These days I try to be CONSCIOUS of my actions and interactions during the day. I try to think before I speak, I try to think before I think and no, that’s not a typo.

My intentions are good, they come from a good place inside me. However,  their impact may not always shine through. That’s a problem that I need to work on. I may be perfectly happy and walk down the street with a frown, thinking about money problems or something unsettling. The fact that I’m frowning gives off bad vibes to other people, so I am trying to change that before I start. I really have practiced grinning when I find my muscles tighten, it actually works and it does pull me out of whatever (foul) mood I am in. It’s contagious too. I try to say hello to everyone, not everyone answers back but that’s fine, some reply, some smile, some ignore, most people react in a wonderful way. It’s a small thing but it is a kind thing to do. There’s too little of that in this world.

The holidays are rough for me and for many others. Many people don’t know that or understand that, most people don’t talk about it. I’ve never been shy to talk about my emotions. I get in trouble for that sometimes but I’m too old to care. The only gift of getting older is  wisdom. If your heart is in the right place, if you are being kind and gracious that’s all that truly matters. You are not frozen in terror like you used to be when you were younger when you kept asking and re-asking yourself if you did the right thing. You do the very best you can with pure intentions and an open heart.

Examples of things to do with NO money involved:

Hold the door open for someone.

Let them get ahead of you in line at the grocery store.

Pay for your cup of coffee and tell the server you want to pay for the next person too.

Smile and say hello to the next 5 people you meet.

If you know a family is struggling, why not ask how you can help them? Or, just help them.

Free babysitting.

The list can go on and on, it’s just that in our busy lives we sometimes forget to think about others and that’s normal. So, today, why don’t you put two or three minutes aside and see how you can make the world a nicer place, a kinder place. It costs you nothing and you get back in return, everything. Let’s make kindness the new normal. Thanks!

Feeling Like Crap And Other Such Novel Events

Frozen Yogurt with Banana and Blueberries

Frozen Yogurt with Banana and Blueberries (Photo credit: planetc1)

An ordinary day, three loads of laundry,

Clearing my throat incessantly,

constant coughing,

a headache that won’t go away, top and forehead

swollen glands.

My dog, barking, throwing up water, three times.

Me, internal and external fatigue, Fibromyalgia or taking care of my sick child, combination probably.

Hard to move one muscle, I will it to move, it does not listen.

I call the far side of my bed “the office” too exhausted to get up, shuffle.

Imagining what it must be like to have so much money that money doesn’t even matter,

Can’t.

Worrying about our Mom getting older, all of us getting older.

Not driving as much. Reality. Stay in the moment.

Don’t meet worry half-way.

Sit. Listen. Quiet.

Old friends become past friends for me. Finally.

Goodbye you-know-who, I’ve cut the chain, I can sail away.

I value myself more, now.

We had great times but that was thirty years ago.

Friendships need to move forward, together.

What is there to miss when you had nothing for so long?

Happy 25th ANNIVERSARY to my husband and to me in October.

a lovely accomplishment, not always easy.

Life is work, kids, work is life.

Plain, unsweetened frozen yogurt with fruit.

slides down my aching throat with chilling ease.

A beautiful summer day.

An ordinary day...

An ordinary day… (Photo credit: ` TheDreamSky)

Playing ball with my dog, Lexi, at the park.

We are both exhausted now, lying together on the bed.

Her long, red body, snoring, my pale body tossing and turning.

Everything feels as right as it can, for this moment, this day.

There are no promises and certainly no guarantees.

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10 Random Things That Would Make Me Very Happy

Laughter

Laughter (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

1. Borders Reopening ( I have been lost without Borders, it was my go-to place, a place to buy books,  look at books, drink coffee, talk to people and generally make my life a  happier place. Let me tell you Target is NOT a suitable replacement but that’s all I’ve got now. The library used to be a nice place until they found one bed bug after a sale and having OCD, I don’t trust the books anymore. I think, if they found one bedbug, the relatives must be nearby and angry.

2. All my good friends would live in a 3 block radius.

3. “Certain people” wouldn’t gang up on me-consciously or unconsciously (God forbid I say their names, I would HEAR about it in 2 minutes with a lecture or small therapy session)

4. Laughing ( When was the last time I really laughed, out loud, clutching my stomach?)

5. A new vanilla based Ben & Jerry ice cream that I would love (Coconut layer cake comes close but it needs something else…)

6. Knowing how to work this damn computer.

7. Having a sense of direction to get to Apple or anyplace without getting lost a hundred times and yes I do have

a GPS system, we call her Jill. (I always assume she is wrong) Big mistake.

8. Having A LOT of money so I could take a vacation or 3 or 4 or 10.  FIRST CLASS.

9. Writing and publishing a best-selling “novel.”

10. Freshly squeezed orange juice every day (that does not come from a bottle or carton.)

English: A horse 'laughing'.

English: A horse ‘laughing’. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Carry on Tuesday, All you need is love

Sad boy

Sad boy (Photo credit: jodiwilldare)

Dear Mama,

It was hard leaving you and Papa when Roger started his new job in Connecticut. You were so kind to have us live with you but it wasn’t fair to you. Believe me, we miss you too and living back in Georgia.

My first impression was not a real good one. People are very different here. They are so loud and everyone is in a rush and in the beginning driving here scared me, those fast cars, horns always honking. Mama, don’t tell Daddy but I used to hide in the bathroom, every night, turn on the shower and cry my aching heart out. No one even welcomed us here, there is no Welcome Wagon like home, no cakes or pies or dinners brought over. People seem cold and unfriendly but I ‘ll get used to it, it’s just their way, I suppose.

We do love our own sweet neighborhood which is wonderful. The summer was great. Kids on their bikes, playing in the streets, moms looking out for each others kids. Once school started everything changed. I guess this town is split in two and I never knew that one side has a lot of money and the other side, like us, well, we don’t. Seems like a lot of kids in Jason and Jeremy’s classes lived in mansions. The houses some of these kids lived in we used to watch on that television show “Dallas.”  Mansions so big like you see on t.v .some with electric fences, some driveways so long you can’t see the houses, some with great big pools or baseball fields in the back. I swear.

Mama, have you ever heard of a live-in nanny? I sure hadn’t. I guess the rich people who live in the mansions have them. The parents get up early in the morning and take a train to work in the City and they stay late into the night. The nannies feed, bathe and put the kids to bed.  Some moms work, others don’t but they still have full-time nannies.  I’ve heard the moms and some dads too go to the gym, or play tennis and go to lunch with each other.  In our neighborhood, we just stay off to ourselves doing regular things: grocery shopping, cooking, laundry, and cleaning. We get our kids on to the orange school bus and we are there to help them off, they get a snack, do homework and then they can play. I had never heard it any other way before.

This pains me to tell you but one day Jason’s new friend came over for the first time. Jason had a new play date with a child from his class the other day, the child came home with him on the bus. Jason was looking forward to this all week-long. I heard them laughing and whispering and going up the stairs to Jason’s room. Then it got quiet. Apparently, the first thing that wretched child said to my son was: “this is worse than I ever imagined it could be.”  My precious boy ran over to me, his face crushed and repeated what the boy said. I told him calmly that it didn’t matter one bit what the boy said, it wasn’t important and was just plain silly, wasn’t it? I got them started on a fun project with rocket ships and special brownies for a snack and they forgot about the room. Lord, as I am standing here, I wanted to cry but of course I couldn’t.

That night when Roger came home Jason told the rest of the family what happened with his”mean” friend.” Mama, It was hear-breaking to see. The boy had behaved poorly and he was rude. This boy’s family had lots of money and did live in a mansion, with a fancy pool but the mom and dad worked really hard all day and night. They had a nanny and a babysitter so the kids didn’t even see their parents very much. The older brother had already  been in trouble with the police. That family didn’t have a mom who stayed home and went to their Open Houses at school or their baseball games; their dad didn’t come home at six pm so that the family could have dinner together.We were all eating my vanilla cake with chocolate frosting AND vanilla ice cream. They couldn’t talk about their days or play games every night at dinner like we did.  We were the ones who were lucky. Money, cars, houses, pools are nice to have if you want them but they are not important.  “It’s not the size of the house that matters; but the amount of love inside that truly counts.” We are truly blessed.

Love, Hope

Carry on Tuesday: There is a place, Where I can go

Photo of a dog behind a chain-link fence at th...

Photo of a dog behind a chain-link fence at the Paws and More No Kill Animal Shelter in Washington, Iowa. I took this picture. This looks just like my dog Yuma. He was from a shelter in Evanston Il. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

There were too many people inside my parents house. They talked too loudly so I slipped out the door in my black down coat and covered my cold, red ears with an old gray hat and crouched behind the bushes. They were probably all drunk.  The clinking of glasses sounded like mirrors being shattered. I didn’t care if it was my mother’s birthday party. Who did they think they were to have a place this garish when they didn’t need it? It was all for show.

Unfortunately, I’m their 18-year old misfit daughter, Lindsey. I embarrass them all the time by the way I talk, the way I dress. They are pretentious and all they care about are their fancy clothes and their BMW cars, glossed so they gleam in the light.  If you asked either my mother or father if they knew anything personal about any guest invited they would come up blank. Their uplifted, tightened faces would freeze and they would change the subject: “Would you like another drink, darling?” These are all plastic people, acquaintances to be used to just get ahead. They really don’t know about each others children, lives, troubles, they just need each other like the stepping-stones to get to their private yachts. I despised them all.

I’ve never been used to the amount of money that my parents would throw at me as if to entertain me. “Here, darling, here’s five hundred dollars, go buy yourself something” my mother would say, waving her hand away.  “Umm”I said, just standing there, silently pleading for her to look at me. She never glanced over. Our conversation was over, she tried to buy my love with money. As if. I wasn’t stupid, I stashed that money away and I had a huge pile saved up in my sock drawer.

Later that night, I shoved all my money in my a bag, took the keys to my dad’s car and left. I was going to my boyfriend Adam’s house, the only person I loved and trusted. I had done this many times before. My parents never even knew I was gone.

In the morning I went with Adam to the *animal shelter where we worked. I loved it there. This was a place where I could go and feel love, unconditional love and I never wanted to leave. My parents would never let me adopt a dog but I had always wanted one since I was a little kid. I begged and pleaded but my mother refused; she didn’t want a dog to “mess up her carpet.” That pretty much summed up our family.

Adam and I had worked at the shelter for about a year now. We cleaned and held the puppies and fed them, stroked their soft fur, wiped out their smelly cages, fed them and gave them water. Then we walked and cleaned the older dogs, same thing every day but it never got boring. Me and one dog who was about a year old were best friends. I named him Rex and he was special to me. I was going to adopt him that very same day.

I hated my life here and Adam hated his. Adam, Rex, and I were going out on the road.  I would never have to see my parents again and I knew if they looked for me at all, they would stop in a week. I was an embarrassment to them. I didn’t fit in with them but Adam and I fit together. Rex was MY dog, and we knew, when we set out that day, we would never ever, look back.

*Both my dogs are from animal shelters, please save a life if you can.

Haiku Heights-Wish

IN MEMORY OF THE CHILDREN, FAMILIES AND STAFF OF NEWTOWN, CT.

candles

candles (Photo credit: rogerglenn)

Trembling hands, shooting

Children cowering, crying

I pray for time, peace.

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Life, untangling

taut, rope fraying, neon bright

Seen by only one.

*****

I bounce in freedom

Gold coins fall into my hands

Independent me.

*****

Young lovers twisted

shiny, sparkling, delighted

Old age settles in.

Growing Old Together

Growing Old Together (Photo credit: ∞ SaraiRachel ∞)

*****

Sparkling green eyes flirt

my head tossed back with laughter

Looking back in time.

Haiku Heights: Alien

Bill is alien

Bill is alien (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Outer space farm-land

Purple lambs eat white star cake

Wearing red lipstick

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Huddled in masses

a grip, shoulder pain gasps blood

wrenched from your lover

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Unknown desires

slipping through smoky windows

the concept of sin

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Stand alone, sweet soul

Evil corruption buys cash,

Poor with dignity

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