Our granddaughter, Dominique (14), is bright, beautiful, and growing up way too quickly for my liking and too slowly for hers.

One of her closest friends will celebrate her quinceañera (fifteenth birthday) on Saturday and Dominique has been invited to sit at the head table. She already has her dress for the occasion, but needed a pair of heels, and since she isn't flying home until Friday, we had to take action.

I'd love to tell you that she tried on dozens of pairs of shoes, oohing and ahhing over every detail in an effort to find the perfect pair, but that wasn't the case. Dominique marched straight to the rack where a dizzying array of special occasion shoes were displayed, pointed at a pair of silver heels, and said "Those."

No amount of cajoling her to try on a pair of strappy sandals would sway her, so it was done. I didn't know whether to be elated that the process had been so simple or sad because it was over so quickly.

I took her for lunch afterwards at a high end burger restaurant, and she took far longer agonizing over the toppings she wanted than she had over the shoes. Come to think of it, she's a lot like me.

Peace, people.

Kinsale, County Cork

While our husbands played golf at Old Head on Sunday, the wives toured Charles Fort and the town of Kinsale.

Rachel outside the fort.

Kinsale is a seaside tourist town with lots of little shops. Many were closed on Sunday afternoon, and our husbands sighed collectively with relief.

The city had hosted a regatta on Saturday, and plenty of sails still decorated the harbor.

We only had a wee bit of time there, and again, the husbands were happy.

Peace, people!

Gadget Girl

I got called “Gadget Girl” today while shopping at TJ MAXX. After thinking about the title, I decided to own it. I like gadgets, especially those that make packing and traveling easier. 

A woman in the store had asked where I’d gotten my handbag (ebags.com) and I showed her all of its little pockets and clever features. After my demonstration, she said, “Why, you’re just a regular gadget girl!” 

What kinds of gadgets, you might ask? The bag is geared to keep thieves from casually unzipping the main compartment and removing a wallet or cell phone with locking devices at every opening. Plus it has RFID pockets built in to reduce the likelihood of someone scanning my credit cards and passport. The bag also cannot be easily sliced open and the straps are reinforced to prevent a thief from snipping one off. 

Of course it could always be stolen, but that would mean a lapse of vigilance on my part. We all know how vigilant I am. (Studly Doright is crying tears at that statement.)

A couple of weeks ago I ordered some items from a company called RūMe. I’d seen their ad on Facebook, and thought, “Wow! Cool travel gadgets!” I didn’t pay for expedited shipping, though, and was beginning to worry that my items wouldn’t make it in time. So, I found a “contact us” link and shot off an email. They got back to me within 24 hours and provided a tracking link. 

After several days, the package still wasn’t moving, so I sent off another email. This one was answered immediately, and I was promised a speedy delivery. True to their word, I received my products Saturday morning, in plenty of time to practice packing for my upcoming trip to Ireland. Yay!

So what did I order? The product is called a Garment Travel Organizer. 

It allows for one to carry up to six items on hangers, and additional items in the mesh pockets. Supposedly, when one folds the packed organizer in thirds, it will easily fit into a carry on bag. There were several patterns from which to choose, but I’ve been on a blue kick lately, so I ordered this navy and white number.

I also received this trio of Tech Tacos to keep cords from tangling. Cute, eh?

And a trio of bags, one of which was a freebie:

I’m extremely pleased with my RūMe products. They look good and were reasonably priced. And the RūMe staff was responsive to my needs. I’d order from them again. My Gadget Girl status remains intact.

Peace, people!

(Oh, I received nothing in compensation for this review. I just wanted to praise a good product.)

Breath Mints and Poop Emojis

Wednesday mid-morning I was bumming around the house. Boredom set in. I knew that if I didn’t get out of the house as soon as possible I’d be reduced to watching crappy morning tv shows and snacking, neither of which are healthy hobbies.

So, I threw on a pair of denim capris and my favorite blue tshirt and headed to my go to boredom beating destination: Walmart. The best thing about Walmart is that you can have a good time even if you don’t spend a dime. That should be their slogan. Walmart: Have a Good Time Without Spending a Dime! Ok, I guess advertising isn’t my thing. 

Since I didn’t have anything in particular to shop for I wandered around in circles for awhile, picking up a new water dish for my cats, a couple of really cheap picture frames ($1.59 folks!), and some breath mints. Bitches never have enough breath mints. (I’ve been dying to type that phrase. I have no idea why.)

As usual Walmart had its amusing moments. Did you know that bean bag chairs in the shape of the 💩 (poop) emoji exist? Me neither! But look:

As bean bag chairs go, it was small. Child-sized. What kind of parent buys a poop emoji bean bag chair for their child? An awesome one, for sure.

As luck would have it I saw this hanging out beside the checkout line, right next to the small packages of Cheet-Os and Doritos. This made me giggle out loud.

Can’t you just picture Trump skulking around the White House in the middle of the night? He’s wielding a baseball bat as Ivanka cowers in fear behind him. 

“Are you sure you heard a noise,” he asks his beloved daughter/acting First Lady.

“Yes, father, it sounded like it was coming from the press room.”

The two peer into the murky space and what do they see? Big Bird and Elmo busily texting Putin. Yes, that’s why Trump really wants to defund NPR and PBS! Damned muppet spies! 

The fearless leader whacks both of them with the bat and Ivanka assists in removing all traces of their bloody deaths. Russian spies gone for good.

See, I told you Walmart is a great boredom beater! Now, go have an awesome day.

Peace, people!

Havana Shopping, Part 2

The Shoppes at Havana Trading Company in Havana, FL, is a fun place to spend a couple of hours. Around every corner one can find something to delight: candles, clothing, tea, antiques, and that’s just for starters.

When I visited yesterday I met Melba Ginsberg, the manager of Melba’s Cafe, and Karyn Burke, the owner of the “Broken Shell Boutique” a purveyor of beachy eclectica. The Broken Shell is just one of many wonderful shops inside The Shoppes at Havana Trading Company.

In her shop Karyn sells everything a displaced beach bum might need: sandals, beach towels, stationery, jewelry, fragrances for body and home, and candles among other things. Mermaids are welcome there, so I felt right at home. 

The vivacious Karyn Burke. She’s a joy!

Obviously I wasn’t the only shopper yesterday, so rather than monopolize Karyn’s time I wandered about The Shoppes and snapped some photos.

i have a hankering for this accordion.
This little three-drawer chest is gorgeous.

I hope these photos make you want to pay a visit to The Shoppes at Havana Trading Company. I’m ready to go back!

Peace, people!

Thomasville, Georgia

A brand new friend and I drove over to Thomasville, Georgia, yesterday to shop and have lunch. It was a superb day even with the rain that fell sporadically and the growing realization that my hips have grown wide enough to qualify for their own zip code.

My friend knows the area, so she was my guide as we peeked into gift shops and boutiques and even a funky taxidermy establishment. 


Heavenly seafood and grits to die for!
After a lunch of Jonah’s spicy Cyclone Shrimp and a Caesar salad we wandered into the cutest little shop. 


You probably can’t tell, but the table top had a layer of sand on it! Perfect for a summer beach themed display.
I should’ve taken more photos, but as we browsed I realized that after several minutes no watchful shop attendant had come out to greet us. A pair of high school aged girls stopped by the store and we learned that one of their teachers owned the business. We continued looking around and visiting for awhile and then the young ladies left. 

Now, I’m a huge fan of shows like Crime Scene Investigation and Criminal Minds, so naturally I began to believe that the shop’s owner had come to some harm. Perhaps as we’d been innocently examining the goods in her shop she’d been lying in a pool of slowly congealing blood, scratching the initials of her assailant in the viscous red liquid in hopes that her murder will be solved and justice served.

With that scenario in mind, I boldly strode to the work area of the store and yelled, “Hello?!” No answer. I looked under a workbench and behind a counter. Nothing. No one. My new friend was beginning to get a bad vibe. About me. I can tell these things–it’s why I can count my friends on one hand and still have two fingers left over.

Reluctantly, we left the store, but I wasn’t through. I went to the shop next door and explained my concerns to the two ladies working there.

Specifically I said, “There’s no one in the gift shop next door. We were there for at least ten minutes and I’m worried about the shop owner.”

“Oh,” said one of the women with a smile. “She is a bit eccentric. She probably just wandered down the street to get some lunch.”

I was relieved and a bit flabbergasted. Who leaves a shop unattended in the middle of the day? Or at any time, for that matter. Granted, Thomasville isn’t a large city, but it is certainly big and busy enough for there to be ill-intentioned people lurking about.

My (still?) friend and I left feeling a measure of relief and continued shopping. She bought a couple of cute tops and I bought a natural mosquito repellent. That’s what one buys when one’s hips have become their own 90210. 

I fully intended to return to the unattended shop before leaving Thomasville, but a rain storm burst from the heavens and put an end to our stroll about town. Perhaps on my next visit I’ll stop in to see who this most trusting of women is and spend a few dollars in her shop. I had a strange affinity for those wooden seagulls.

Peace, people!

What’s Your Function?

In the latter part of my fifth decade on this earth I learn of the existence of Functional Water. I sincerely hope I haven’t fallen prey to the non-functional variety of H2O all these years.  
And I don’t even want to dwell on the ramifications of New Age Beverages. Do such drinks strike yoga poses when no one’s observing them? Are they into transcendental meditation?

I must explore this grocery aisle again one day soon. The secret to inner peace undoubtedly lies on 6b somewhere between the mundane offerings of bottled tea and soft drinks. Ommmmm.

Peace and functionality, people!

Unintentional Dating 

Unintentional Dating 

My lonely life revolves around shopping, blogging, and Facebook, but at least I have a life of sorts. On Facebook I’m particularly vulnerable to clicking on tests–“How Smart are You?” “What Does Your Color Preference Indicate about You?” “Are  You a Sociopath? Find out in 10 Easy Steps.”


For the record, there’s a unicorn inside me, which explains the gastric distress.
Like most facebookers, I take the results of these tests with a grain of salt, meaning if I like the results it was a righteous test; if I don’t, it was a lame questionnaire with no legitimacy. I still maintain that I am not a sociopath. Stupid test.

Most of the time these little activities are straightforward and harmless: Click on the site, answer a few multiple choice questions, receive your results. But one day this week I took a quiz and was automatically transferred to the online dating site, FirstMet.

I didn’t answer a single question and left the page immediately. However, the site was linked to my Facebook profile so now I’ve been receiving dozens of emails from potential suitors. They include

Gary, a 55 year old male in Tallahassee who’d like to rock my world. His hobbies include listening to Rush Limbaugh and going to tractor pulls.

Mark, 58, is retired and enjoys television and Chinese take out.

Walt, 62, likes the Hunger Games and country music. Walt has a comb over (I saw his photo). 

I thought I could ignore these emails and they’d go away, but they keep coming. Either I’m much more desirable than I ever thought, or these men are slightly desperate. Let’s go with option #2.

Studly Doright really doesn’t want me to date. And honestly, unless Harrison Ford, Huey Lewis, or Adam Levine show up in an email I’m not all that interested. 

Finally a Facebook friend showed me how to stop receiving the emails from FirstMet, so maybe my suitors will fade away. Of course now I won’t have any way to know when Harrison tries to contact me. That’s the downside.

Ok, I’m going to go retake that sociopath assessment. Must be more careful this time around. Bwahaha.
Peace, people!

Isn’t It Amazing?

Oh Pan, how could you do the unthinkable and grow up? You promised we’d happily inhabit 

Neverland forever, crowing the dawn into existence, sharing feasts with fantastic

Friends and fiends. You taught me to fly, but without you the gift is but another

Form of transportation–lonely, neck straining, wind-battering air travel.

The Lost Boys still sing your praises, I can only cry. My tears turn into streams, then into 

rivers. Come back Peter! We can pretend you never left. Pretending is what we do best.


I purchased this bracelet a couple of days ago at Magnolia Mercantile, a funky, fun little shop in Tallahassee, Florida. The saying on the bracelet forced me to write the poem. Honest. 

Notice the cute little Tinkerbell dangling from the chain. Is this perfect or what?

Peace, people!