Sweet Pleasures

Three rubber ducks in foam bath

Three rubber ducks in foam bath (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Tomorrow, I will take a long, hot vanilla-sugar bubble bath and soak until my fingers look like large raisins. Afterwards, I will put body lotion on so my skin feels silky soft, maybe I’ll clip my toenails and paint them pink without rushing. I will do everything today at my pace.

I will drive to the diner in the next town to order the best tuna sandwich on multi-grain bread to-go. I have exceedingly high standards for tuna fish sandwiches and this is the only place that I will eat it in.

I will clean the clutter in my room just enough that I feel I have accomplished something, I am no neat freak but mountains of clean laundry (3 baskets) makes me feel uneasy. I will sort them and put them away. I hope. The worst case scenario is that I hide them, once again, which is a guilty compromise.

Maybe I will take myself to a movie, in the early afternoon. There just so happens to be a bakery on the same street that sells only cupcakes, yes, just cupcakes. I will stop in to buy a vanilla, pumpkin spice or banana cupcake with vanilla icing. The key is the vanilla icing.

I can’t decide which book to read next, there are two hardback books grinning in front of me. “Pick me” says one, “pick me” says the other and yet I have opened up both books, read a few pages of each and have stopped. Tomorrow, I will read the first fifty pages of both books and then decide. The rule, when I was growing up was to read twenty pages, but now, that I am older, I have changed the rules to fifty pages. How can you judge a book by a mere twenty pages?

When I am cold, in the afternoon, I will make myself a cup of hot chocolate and not the instant mix packages that are hidden in the pantry. Real hot chocolate made lovingly with milk that I stir slowly, and add melted chocolate or chocolate syrup, I am not that fussy. I will put many marshmallows on top. I will drink it out of my big, bright, yellow mug that my best friend gave me for my birthday, she knows that yellow is my favorite color.

Maybe I will take a nap, or meet my mother for lunch and if I can’t sleep I will cuddle with my dog on my bed, her body closely aligned to mine so we both feel safe and warm. Tomorrow will me “my” day and I will go to my local shops and browse. If I see something I love and can afford I will buy it as a gift for myself. Who says gifts have to come from other people? Who knows me best? Yes, I do.

More importantly I have a secret plan to do a good deed or as many as I possibly can, I will do some anonymous acts of kindness knowing in my heart that is the biggest gift of all.

All That Is Good: Roland Comtois

Angel Cloud - HDR

Angel Cloud – HDR (Photo credit: Free HDR Photos – http://www.freestock.ca)

I don’t idolize “celebrities” or “actors” like some people do, I need to know a person inside and out before I hand over my heart. However, there is one man who I absolutely adore and I have met him personally several times. His name is Roland Comtois, he is a Medium, receiving messages from the other side (those who have passed away) and giving them to those who have lost a loved one. I DON’T work for Roland nor do I sell his books or get a percentage of anything he sells. I just want you to know that I believe in him so much and that he is such an amazingly GOOD PERSON that I wanted to share his name with you.

He rarely does private meetings anymore but he so kind and gentle with a voice that sounds like angels playing their harps, like laughter in the heavens, like what pure honesty would sound like. I have never doubted him for a minute, except the first time I ever went to a gathering at Helen’s house (Starvisions) and he picked up on that and said out loud that I was there “checking him out.” So true.

Roland Comtois. He is a medium, with a heart and a spirit so open that I imagine dozens of white doves fly from his heart and pass his messages from those who have passed to those who are living. I was lucky enough to get two of those purple papers and Roland knew my name even though there were no name tags nor was he told in advance who was coming. He stood over me, with his soft, gentle eyes and addressed me, gave me a message from my father who had passed, and I burst into tears with joy and peace and love. I am the lucky recipient of two Purple Papers and I was the conduit for another woman in the audience.

His message is sweet and simple, we don’t NEED a medium to get messages from our loved ones, which I have always known. I do get messages on my own and have for years. But, for those that don’t, keep your heart open, ask for messages from your angels, from God, from the person you miss, directly, and be open to any sign that may come. Be patient and open and most of all, believe in yourself. The sign will may not be blatant like a photo or a picture, mine come in initials and numbers or music and birds. My first message, the most important one, came in the form of a luggage tag. Yes, it’s true.

Be aware of your surroundings and be open to love. I consider it an absolute privilege and honor to have met Roland in person. Thank you, world.

Special thanks to http://www.freestock.ca

Free Write Friday, Kellie Elmore

House cat with a ball of yarn.

House cat with a ball of yarn. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The air was thick with humidity, Emily hadn’t seen the sun in five straight days. To say she was going “stir-crazy” was the understatement of a lifetime. It was hard to breathe, harder to move. She was home with her teenage children, her husband worked long hours and while he used to call her nine times a day just to say hello, he had stopped calling altogether. She had signed up for a clay class but she just heard that it had been cancelled. Her volunteer work at the hospital had ended three weeks ago. She had nothing to do, nowhere to go and she was starting to feel bored, restless and just a little off-center.

She made dinner for the family, most of which was eaten in silence. The cat, Ivy, purred on the sofa, her head resting on a ball of blue yarn. Emily let out an audible sigh of envy, at least the cat was happy, she thought, at least someone was, she certainly wasn’t. What was it about this summer that seemed so different? She felt so closed in, none of her friends were around and there was nothing to do, no one to talk to. She wasn’t brave enough to fly someplace alone and even if she was, they couldn’t afford it but she knew it couldn’t go on like this, she needed to do something, soon.

She thought about it that week and slowly she came up with an idea, an idea that made her smile inwardly. She came up with a plan that involved everything she loved, didn’t cost a lot of money, gave her independence and a mini-vacation. She didn’t ask anyone’s permission, why should she? She had waited on her husband and family for years but one night she told them, not asked them, that she was going to be away for a few days, with her old college roommate. They barely even acknowledged what she said, they mumbled “ok” and  her son asked ” Who is going to cook us dinner?” was the only question asked by her son. You’ll figure it out, ” she said calmly, “Dad can give you extra money for pizza.”

The next morning, after everyone had left she packed her car, turned on the music, her music, on loud and headed to meet her old friend in Boston. She knew they were heading to the beach, which beach she wasn’t sure. She would stop at a motel or an Inn, whatever appealed to her on the way. There were no rules, no rules except for her to have fun and to do whatever made her happy. She had packed a few books, she had her radio and she felt peaceful. She was going to pick up Jane and then Jane would take over the driving. Leaving had made her happy, that was something to think about on its own.

They hugged tightly when they saw each other, it had been years since their last reunion. Jane took over the driving while Emily, now wearing her new sunglasses, put her arm and hand out the window in joyous rhythm to the music she loved. She tilted her head back, grinning, laughed happily and sang, loudly off-key.

Plinky Prompt: What My Possessions Say…

  • Peep in Nature

    Peep in Nature (Photo credit: lightsoutfilms)

  • Choose and write about 5 (or 10) possessions that sum up who you are. See all answers
  • What your possessions say
  • My dog from a rescue shelter (if that counts as a possession)
    framed photo of me and my dad
    a photo of my son and my daughter when they were young
    my computer for blogging
    my monkey stuffed animal given to me from my dad when I was 2
    an old down comforter
    a small painting that I bought by myself 15 years ago
    lots and lots of books, all different kinds
    candles
    Cadbury Egg
    Peeps
    Lots of photographs in different frames
    Angel perfume

*”Bye, Bye Borders, Borders, Bye Bye”

Borders store closing

Image by scazon via Flickr

Closing all Borders stores is an out-and-out major disappointment. It stinks, big time. What now? Adios Barnes and Noble too? I’m not saying that I don’t love Amazon.com because I do, I like it for its convenience and low prices. Sigh, but really, you can’t sit at Amazon and drink a cup of coffee. You can’t leisurely and lovingly stroll down the aisles to see what the new hardcover books look like or how the new in paperback books are all lined up in a perfect row begging for hands to fondle them. It’s just not right and it’s sad.

Now, there is no where to go and stroll through the aisles, looking at book jackets, stopping to read the titles, gently touching my fingertips to the outline of the illustration. Borders was a great place to meet, it was in the perfect place for so many people from nearby medical offices, stores, office buildings and deli’s to meet.  Closing Borders is closing a network of people who like to linger, socialize and have a damn cup of coffee even it tasted like dirty dishwater. It was a place to sit and not ever feel rushed. You could linger among magazines and mochachinos. You could also meet like-minded people, give unsolicited advice about books, make friends, start a book club, read books to their springy, enthusiastic children.

So now, what do we do? Read our lifeless Kindles (I don’t use the one I ordered years ago) by ourselves, never touching a piece of fine, heavy, cream-colored paper? Part of  closing this particular business is not like saying good-bye to a furniture store or a nail salon, it’s saying good-bye to a way of life. A nice, peaceful way of life where people could talk, they could exchange ideas and suggest books for each other or lend coupons. It was a social place as well as a store. My children may never sit in a bookstore and linger over a heavenly array of different books, with different colorful covers and  eat snacks. They won’t meet other people or share a cup of coffee or talk to other people their age. They will be hunched over their iPhones and all they need, it seems, is a credit card and a computer. It’s a sad statement for our society.

*Sung to the tune of  “Bye, Bye, Baby, Baby Goodbye…” By the Frankie Valli and the 4 Seasons

What I Am Saving Up To Buy Plinky Prompt

Steve Jobs while introducing the iPad in San F...

Image via Wikipedia

  • What I’m Saving Up to Buy
  • Maybe, Maybe Not
  • In my fantasy, I am saving up for an iPad. Or a Nikon SLR camera. I am not sure if I ever would buy one or the other but I like to have something to think about. Today, after a boring ride home in a hot train I talked to a man who looked cheerful and entertained, he had the iPad. I asked him questions about it, i.e. Can you write with it? Would I ever be able to figure it out? He said “Oh, my 4 year old son knows how to use it.” That, kind Sir, does not help me. I am a technophobe, I can barely answer my dummy phone. I’m sure your 4 -year old can learn it quickly. It’s those of us that are older, like me, untalented, uncoordinated and unused to this new technology that need a lot of help. The fact that a 4-year old knows how to work this makes it harder for me. Imagine if I could never figure it out, your kid would win.
  • Not to mention I did buy a Kindle for reading books and hated it. I missed the feel and texture of the book!

An Author I Admire (Plinky Prompt)

Joan Didion at the 2008 Brooklyn Book Festival...

Image via Wikipedia

Joan Didion

I read her memoir: The Year of Magical Thinking about life before, during and after her husband died. I would ask her where she got the strength to carry on day after day. I would ask how she could distance herself so emotionally from the situation to write a book that does not seem too emotional but more like a step-by-step account of the little things that went on when her husband died; the little details, the reading of the newspaper, the steps to overcome. What happened after you finished the book? Did your perspective change? Was life different? If you had to write the same book over again now, years later, what would you change? What new advice could you give? Were there things that you would have done differently? How has your life changed and what is your life like today?

With great respect,

Yours Kindly,

Hibernationnow.wordpress.com

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My Boredom Cures

This photo of a rural child was photographed b...

Image via Wikipedia

Books, Movies, TV, Blogging, Music, Writing, Computer, Books…..Still bored after all those options? Get a grip! I’m generally not bored, and I’m generally not fussy. I’ve always been able to occupy my “alone” time. In childhood, our mom said I was happy to play in my room all by myself but that my older sister needed to be entertained all the time. I see that with my own children now: my oldest child needs to be entertained and my second born is more content and doesn’t mind alone time (though she probably wouldn’t admit to it). Maybe it has to do with birth order.  The first-born child does get undivided attention, where us second born (or babies) have never known anything else except sharing. We’ve never had undivided attention. Maybe it’s a coping mechanism or just maybe we are more content. Or it’s simply a personality issue. Alone time, to me, doesn’t mean I’m bored, it means I’m comfortable with myself.

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My 5 Worst Vices

White chocolate is marketed by confectioners a...

Image via Wikipedia

Some would call these vices, but not me. They’re habits…..idiosyncracies…..creative qualities……and fine taste.

 

Chocolate
I don’t discriminate, milk, dark (even fake white chocolate), candy bars, truffles, and any chocolate covered fruit. When fruit is covered with chocolate it makes it healthy and a necessary food group. This also includes chocolate milk and hot chocolate, again, dairy = strong bones, thus a health food.

 

Ms. Messy
I am a clean person but a messy one. Stacks of letters, old birthday cards, photographs, college note-books. It’s hard for me to throw stuff away. I am NOT a hoarder, I prefer to call myself sentimental.

 

Pizza With Jelly
Yes, my kids are disgusted but sometimes pizza is dry. So, for the last 35 years I solve that by adding grape jelly (my first choice) to my pizza. In an emergency, I would substitute strawberry jam. Orange marmalade is not an option, nor is cherry (That is disgusting and going over the line!)

 

Book Collector
I buy more books than I can read in a life time. When I am reading (which is most of the time) I need at least 2 (OK, I’m lying, 10-20) books to choose from so that when I finish a particularly good book, I won’t be depressed. I need choices, is that so wrong?

 

Anxiety
Yeah, sometimes I worry a bit too much. I worry about things that I have NO control over. Pointless, you say? I totally agree. That doesn’t help me in the least. What if…..What if? I know, I tell myself to shut up all the time. Useless. I know. I blame my mother, it’s all genetics.

 

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My Most Recent Compliment

the phantom tollbooth, by norton juster, illus...

Image by sparrowsfall via Flickr

A Gift For You, A Gift For Me

 

The Phantom Tollbooth

I’ve always wanted to make a difference in someone’s life. I’m not talking about the usual suspects like my children or my husband. I’ve always thought about people who have influenced me, people who hold a special place in my own heart. Just recently I met a friend through the Fibromyalgia/Chronic Pain site on Facebook. The ladies in this “special” club have bonded in a way that no-one can possibly imagine. Perhaps we should call it “The Sisterhood of Pain.” I noticed that one of the young women had a quote from the “Phantom Tollboth” on her page, a book I know well. It turns out that this young lady was obsessed with the book; she loved it dearly and it was very special to her and her daughter. I just happen to know the author of the book, Norton Juster, very well. He’s a family friend, he was at our wedding, we see him, from time to time, when we visit my in-law’s. I asked my father-in-law to buy the book for Lyn and have Norton Juster autograph it for her. I didn’t tell Lyn, I lied and told her I wanted her address to send her a card. A couple of weeks later the autographed book and my card arrived in her mailbox. It turned out that it arrived when she was having a particularly difficult day. She was THRILLED and she was so thankful for the gift. She also said that I was a really nice person, that I  was special and had made a difference in her life, that I held a special place in her heart. I was happy I could give her a gift, happier that she gave me a gift too.

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