Bye Bye Bras (and Knickers)

My spring closet cleaning continues at an amazingly slow pace. Every time I’m in a groove something shifts my attention away from sorting and tossing to less productive activities such as reading or napping.

That’s not to say that I’m not making progress, though, and this morning I found ten dollars in change in an old wallet. Cha-ching!

If my cleaning efforts could be kept strictly to the closet the whole process would be over and done with already; unfortunately, when I rearrange one group of items another space either opens up or closes off. That’s what happened when I moved my brassiere collection from a dresser drawer into the closet.

You see, I realized I had bras that hadn’t been worn since the presidency of the first George Bush and they needed to go. So I made a nice pile of saggy old bras on top of the electronic organ I’m totally incapable of playing.

I wondered if perhaps my knickers (panties) drawer had similar pieces, and indeed it did. Elastic? Had that stringy stuff around the waistband and leg openings once been elastic? I made a second pile.

Then I googled Goodwill to see if they’d accept my castoffs (not the worst of them, but the ones that could still maintain their intended functions) and the answer was no. So, what to do with a sizable stack of undies on the electronic organ? (I can actually play both halves of Heart and Soul—just not at the same time.)

Again I googled and found a company called Knickey. For a $5.00 fee, Knickey will accept used panties, bras, and tights. You box them up. They’ll send you a mailing label via email and it’s easy breezy! They recycle the undies into materials that can be used in mattresses. Maybe other stuff, too. Plus, they send you a pair of their organic panties.

I sent my underwear, even the worst of the worst, off this morning and now I’m free to not play the organ once again.

Here’s a link to Knickey:

And that’s how it’s done.

Peace, people.

Staycation 2022

A few days ago I typed “The End” on my fourth novel, Reunion at the Happy Valley Motor Inn and Resort, the third in the Happy Valley trilogy. If that sounds confusing, it’s because one of my books, The Cowboy and the Executive, is for now, a stand-alone romance.

“Reunion” is currently in the hands of beta readers and I know it’s being read with an eye for all of my missteps and goof ups. Unless one is perfect, and I have yet to meet anyone fitting that description, beta readers and a good editor are essential to creating a finished book with a polished feel.

I’m a better than average proofreader, but when it comes to one’s own writing one develops a certain selective blindness. I still cringe at some of the minor errors I now see in Mayhem at the Happy Valley Motor Inn and Resort, and one day maybe we’ll pull the book from Amazon and fix them. Just not today.

While “Reunion” is being worked on, I’m cleaning out my closet. Ugh. A job I’d planned on taking one day is now into its fourth. Of course it might go more quickly if I weren’t also taking breaks to ruminate on book four in the Happy Valley series—working title, Christmas at the Happy Valley Motor Inn and Resort. Yes, Paula, Cassie, and the gang are coming along for at least one additional adventure before I wrap the series up. Will Santa show up with just the right presents? Maybe.

Spring fever has attacked with a vengeance this year. I want to be outside, but outside makes my eyes water. The weather here in the Florida panhandle is absolutely gorgeous, but the pollen is everywhere. I could make a “pollen man” and stick a corn cob pipe in his mouth, but I’d probably collapse from sneezing mid-construction. At least I’m not cold, and that’s a plus.

Okay, that closet is still calling. I might see the light at the end of the tunnel. Then again, maybe that’s an oncoming train.

Peace, people!

http://Mayhem at the Happy Valley Motor Inn and Resort (The Happy Valley Series)


I’m cleaning out my closet today. Out with the old stuff—things I haven’t worn in more than a year—and in with absolutely nothing. And since I failed to do this task last year, or the year before, the number of shirts and jeans I own and never wear is embarrassing. Still, I’ve had to slap my hand a time or two to keep from reaching back into the donation pile to return an item to the closet.

Later today I’m attending a memoir writing class at a local library. Maybe my memoirs will include a chapter on why I feel the need to possess so many striped blouses from Talbots.

A reasonable representation of what I own.

This evening Studly Doright and I plan to watch NCAA basketball. This year’s men’s tournament has been great so far—especially since the Kansas Jayhawks are still in contention.

Okay, I’ve stalled long enough. Back to the closet for me. Thanks for the break.

Peace, people!

Self Help Books—Yay or Nay?

A friend recently read a self help book that made her so sad she had to put it away, thus confirming my own belief that such tomes only make us dwell too much on what we need to improve and not what we already do well.

Never mind that the same friend is a big fan of self help books, who just didn’t find this one to be right for her, I tend to paint the genre in broad, negative strokes.

Why? Because my mom was always telling me I should read this one or that one when I knew that on the happiness scale I ranked a solid eight, while she hovered around a four. Who knows, though? Without the books she might’ve scored even lower.

There was one piece of wisdom, though, that she gleaned from her readings that made perfect sense to me, and that given the opportunity I always pass along to others who might benefit:

No one else is responsible for your happiness. You alone hold that key.

Now that’s some solid self help.

Peace, people.

Do You Believe in Magic?

That first touch, first kiss

First I love you

Still exist

Somewhere in the archives

Of my soul.

And surely that was magic

Just as the weight of a

Newborn baby in my arms

Is magic.

And sometimes I think

To myself, nobody else,

But you, I suppose

That it’d be a real shame

If all my magic has played out,

Gone to someone younger;

Someone who won’t realize what was afoot

Until wrinkles line their face and

Maybe then it’s too late.

But I tell myself, and you,

That is, those of you who understand,

Our days of magic are now

In the sunsets and warm embraces

Of a gentle love with whom

We’ve grown old.

Like a Homing Pigeon

Sat down at an outside table at Sweet Pea Cafe in Tallahassee to enjoy my wonderful vegan meal and immediately felt an odd sensation on my rump, was that moisture seeping into the denim of my jeans?

Yep. Somehow I found the only wet spot on the entire bench, a leftover from two days of thunderstorms. Yay me.

A water-filled knothole just waiting for an unsuspecting klutz like me.

Peace, people.

Pictures from Las Vegas

I spent several days in the city known for showgirls, casinos, and over the top productions. But, lest you think I was in Las Vegas, Nevada, purely for pleasure, think again. Oh, I had plenty of fun, but not the kind you might be imagining.

Sometime last year I applied to attend a writer’s workshop hosted by author Craig Martelle. Knowing that my acceptance was a long shot, I quickly stored the thought of it in a deep, dark recess of my mind and got on with my life. Then, miracle of miracles, I received an invitation to attend and my mind was blown.

Those of you who know me can probably imagine the anxiety I felt. I began making excuses to myself so I could back out of the event. Then, I visited with my brother, Kelly. When I told him about the workshop, he offered to come to Vegas and hang out with me for a few days prior to the retreat weekend. That was all the encouragement I needed.

After spending six days in Sin City, I’m exhausted, but I wanted to share a few photos of what turned out to be an epic experience.

From the Las Vegas Meow Wolf art installation:

Just one of the many products on display at the Omega Mart—a clever façade for a fantastic world of imaginative art.
Personalized bleach.
Have you tried the Implied Chicken?
Or Emergency Clams.
The labels are worth a read.
Muscle Fresh Toothpaste. Yum.
Sparkling waters in interesting flavors.
Brother Kelly found something he really needed.

But behind the scenes, if one is fortunate enough to find it, lies the most incredible adventure.

That’s me talking to myself in a mirror. Yes, it took me a few seconds to recognize myself.
Kelly and Susan pose in a multi-dimensional work of art.
That’s a mop and bucket.

One evening we had dinner at Gordon Ramsay’s Hell’s Kitchen. I really should have taken photos of my beautiful food, but in the heat of the moment I forgot. Let me tell you, the meal was incredible. I had salmon and green beans cooked to perfection. And the sticky toffee pudding was the bomb.

I did take a wonderful photo of Kelly and Susan though.

Enjoying a pre-dinner cocktail. So good.

After dinner we strolled through a casino or two and Susan took this of my “little” brother and me.

One to cherish.

Part of one day I hung out at Kelly and Susan’s travel trailer and visited with their dog, Gus.

Handsome boy.

So glad I had the chance to enjoy this time with Kelly and Susan. The older I get the more I appreciate these moments. And Kelly is barely even annoying anymore.

I’ll write a bit about the workshop in a day or so. It deserves it’s own post, but for now, I’m going to bed.

Until we meet again, peace, people.

The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel

Tell me why it took me so long to start watching The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel on Amazon Prime. It is almost perfect, and yet I’ve deprived myself of its delights until very recently.

Without going into any details about the series, here are the things I like about it in no particular order:

1. The music. The music is wonderful and comes from more than just the late 50’s which is the time period in which the series takes place. Just in the episode Studly Doright and I watched last night we heard pieces from Dean Martin, Ella Fitzgerald, Glen Miller, and The Hues Corporation. I sing along and Studly ignores me.

2. The fashions. Oh my goodness. Midge Maisel’s wardrobe is incredible. Most of it would look ridiculous on me, but I don’t care. I want every single piece of it.

3. The relationships. Midge and Joel. Her parents. His parents. Susie and who knows? The weirdness. The dialogue is divine.

4. The humor. Well, it is a series primarily about a female comic at a time in history when women weren’t supposed to be funny, unless they had some kind of schtick (think Minnie Pearl). Midge Maisel doesn’t do schtick. And she’s outrageously funny. And irreverent.

The only thing that I don’t exactly love is the way the two Maisel children are treated. They’re almost an afterthought in the day to day lives of the Maisels. In the Catskills episode they don’t even get the baby out of the car until the the rental house is arranged to their liking, Baby? What baby? Maybe that’s part of the schtick. But then, they don’t do schtick.

So I was late to the party. I’m enjoying it now, though. It provides a great distraction when the news becomes too much.

Peace, people.


I don’t know about anyone else, but I’m full of anxiety and can barely pay attention to anything other than news from Ukraine.

When I find my mind consumed to the point of being unable to sleep or walk in a straight line or any other normal activity, I pull out my kindle and read. That works for a while.

On the whole I’m napping too much, and last night I thought I might be having a heart attack. And my country isn’t even under siege. At least not from outside our borders.

So, what works for you? How are you coping?

Artwork by Ukrainian artist Denis Sarazhin

Peace, people.

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