2019 Attitude of Gratitude Challenge

Funny how things work, sometimes.  I can’t remember if it was Thursday or Friday (2nd or 3rd of January) when I thought to myself: I wonder if Dawn is doing her Attitude of Gratitude thing this year. Not two days later (or three) what do I get in my inbox but Dawn’s post! Serendipity at its best. Let’s just say that if she hadn’t, I would have been sad and maybe, just maybe, I would have done my own anyway. It’s kinda nice to be part of something that already exists, dontcha think?

The rules are really simple.  Set the timer for 15 minutes and start listing – very stream of consciousness, this thing.  I will do exactly that by listing whatever pops into my head and at the end, shall return to my list and clean up typos, remove duplicates or even maybe cheat by adding more deets to the items, because, well, if I stop to write all the whys, then my list will be shorter.  Then again, this isn’t a contest so, does it matter just how many I have? Maybe cheating won’t even be necessary!  Okay, Rogerson, just shut up and write already.

The following are the things for which I am grateful or simply bring me joy and peace:

  1. B – for what you give and what you agree to receive;
  2. My sisters – no matter what’s what, they will be there
  3. Mom – same thing, without you, I’d not be here
  4. Dad – no longer here, you still influence some of my decisions
  5. Mick – no matter that you’ve been gone five years, you are still a huge presence, not to mention a great muse for my writing
  6. Writing – the ability to share what I want to say and have people receive it
  7. Reading – we learn so much about life, the world when we open ourselves to reading
  8. Friday Fictioneers and Rochelle in particular for being the first challenge that opened me up to writing more
  9. Blogosphere – for introducing me to so many fantastic writers
  10. Friends made over the blogosphere – it’s amazing how close we can become, like you, Sawsan, now a flesh and blood friend
  11. Julie, Giselle, Linda, Cathy – my girlfriends who are there to drink, eat and be merry with
  12. My guy friends – who keep me laughing
  13. My boys – for keeping me real – whether I like it or not
  14. The scent of petrichor in the summer
  15. The sound of rain on a window when lying in bed
  16. Being able to sit outside on a covered porch when it rains
  17. Big fluffy snow in winter, especially on Christmas Day
  18. Zeke – for giving me a reason to get out and enjoy the fresh air
  19. Standing outside, and realising all is silent and being in the moment
  20. Coffee!
  21. Wine (and beer or spirits 😉 )!
  22. The sound of the wind in the marcescent leaves
  23. My house – it keeps me safe from the elements
  24. My health – it might have blips from colds but otherwise, I’m healthy
  25. DK – for introducing me to soooo many books and for being you, who shares such beautiful things
  26. My laptop – which keeps me connected to so many people
  27. Hang Outs – which allows me to chat with my bestie face-to-face
  28. Warm thick socks in the winter
  29. Dresses in the summer
  30. My capacity (capability?) to smile through the tough stuff
  31. My ability to love freely
  32. Photography – a way to capture everything that grabs my attention
  33. Sunsets
  34. Being by the water – lake, river, ocean
  35. Travel – introducing me to cultures and broadening my horizons
  36. Cooking – not only to nourish but also to show my creativity
  37. Discovering my creativity, which I was so sure I didn’t have till it was pointed out to me
  38. Movies – being able to escape into another world for a couple of hours
  39. Merril – for introducing me to poetry and inspiring me to keep trying it
  40. Frank – because you introduced me to sooo many fabulous bloggers and your concerts were the best that I was honoured to act as your Maître D’ and because I want you to know that I am going to miss you – blogging. I shall hound you elsewhere 😉
  41. Light to see
  42. Dark to rest
  43. Love, in general – amorous or friendly
  44. Sex and the joy of sharing intimacy
  45. My eyes – so I can appreciate what is out there
  46. My ears – listening to the sounds around me, music, my loved ones’ voices
  47. My limbs – though they sometimes let me know they need more limbering
  48. My sense of humour – which helps keep me out of trouble
  49. My ability to connect with people of all stations
  50. My intellect – which permits me to have proper conversations on all sorts of things
  51. My curiosity – which keeps me learning always
  52. My snarkiness, which keeps me from not being taken seriously
  53. To you authors who trusted me with your works and allowed me to be a beta reader – I am beyond chuffed

Tools of the Trade – Crimson’s Creative Challenge #58

My brain is still addled so it has led me to write this piece of nonsense.  Thought I’d have a little bit of silly fun.  All serious, all the time, I cannot be…

But really, click here to read some proper stories – there are some good ones 😉

Tools of the Trade

What the hell are you doing?

I’m creating my ‘Tools of the Trade’ box!

Your what? For Chrissakes… Don’t those belong in your cake-making toolbox?

Yep.  I was at the museum the other day and saw a display box like this with tools used to hunt and whatnot during prehistoric times. Figured I’d create one for future generations to learn about some of the stuff I use today when building my cakes.


Why not?

You are certifiably nuts. Don’t you think displays for cake decorating already exist?

Ya think? Dang… Maybe I should put together a box of sewing stuff! Or photography stuff! Or—

Give it a rest.


Wakey, Wakey, Time for Breaky! – What Pegman Saw

This week Pegman takes us to Saskatchewan Canada. You may use the photo provided with the prompt or take to Google maps and search within the borders of Saskatchewan for your own inspiration.

Your mission is to write up to 150 words inspired by the prompt. You may contribute poetry, prose, or essay. Once your piece is polished share with others at the link up below. Reading and commenting on others work is part of the fun.

How can I resist when Pegman goes to my country AND I have been to said place – even when just driving through. So, sorry… once again, I have given you a “travel post” for this challenge.  Thanks to Karen and Josh for hosting this weekly party that I don’t attend often enough!  I shall strive to come by more often.

Click me to play!

Wakey, Wakey, Time For Breaky!

“Good morning, girls!  Time to get up, get breakfast and hit the road!”

“Aw, Dad! Do we have to get up at six o’clock every morning?”

“Yeah, Dad. Why can’t we sleep in a little. This is a vacation!”

“Oh, come on, you two, this is a fun trip.”

The two others, in unision:  “Shut up, Nicole!”

“Alright girls, that’s enough. Just get dressed so we can go eat. I need a coffee,” chimed in Mom.

“I’m having pancakes!”

“Me, too!”

“I’m with Mom, need coffee. This is so stupid that we have to get up so damn early,” grouched the eldest.

They piled into their Ford Econoline Super Van and searched for a diner as the motel had no restaurant.  They didn’t have far to drive.

Weird. No cars.  Sign indicated: ‘Opens at 6:00 am.’

“Dammit, Dad!!  Regina, Saskatchewan does NOT observe Daylight Savings Time!

You woke us up at 5:00!!”

Similar to the van we had to cross Canada back in 1983

*Sadly, a mostly true tale. I was 21 at the time; my sisters 18 and 15 (well, the following month) and it was the last family road trip we took together.  I moved out of the family home on my return.


Artistic License – Crimson’s Creative Challenge #55

Alrighty then… Over time, this challenge has come to mean a way for me to get out some old (or not so old) photos and try to match them to Crispina‘s.  Then write a story to go with.  This one didn’t quite work out for me.  However, I have taken artistic license and since there are no rules besides not going past 150 words… A little silly never hurt anyone, right?

Artistic License

Didja get the plan I gave ya?

I shore did.

And, you think you are following it?

I shore am.

Really? Do you see a house in my picture?

No, but—

Do you see a fence in my picture?

No, but those posts look like an unfinished—

Do you think you are still following the plan?

Well, no. BUT.  I thought I’d use a little artistic license.

We cannot do our ritual in the place you have chosen.

Why not?

First off, the circle is unfinished.

I know, I was going to get to that before you arrived.

And that’s not how it’s done. It needs to have more of ‘henge’ feeling so not a fence, just the posts.

But this looks rustic, no?

Yeah, it’s lovely for a home.

I thought it rather nice.

Still, we can’t do our ritual here.

Why not?

We’ll wake the neighbours!


The SPAM Files

Might become a series, might not. I shall see 😉

I was doing that fun job of emptying my SPAM folder here on WordPress. It is amazing (read: annoying) just how many land in there. And heaven help us if we don’t go through it regularly (at least once per day if not more).  I made the mistake of missing a couple of days.  Matter of fact, I started this here post with the nine I had “saved” before supper. When I came back, I was up to 28.  Jayzus.

Anyhoo, that is neither here nor there. After flushing the twelve pages (yes, twelve) of offers for this drug or that one; warnings about this or that malady, the Russian-Who-Knows-What-the-Hell and the offers for porn, I found myself with a few comments that looked like they could have been from real followers.  Followers whose comments end up in SPAM through no fault of anyone’s but WordPress’ aleatory decision.  They were not.  This is what they were:

outline for writing an argumentative essay told me:  You commit an error. I can defend the position. This was for my poem “Highs and Lows” – which means, I guess, that I may not feel what I felt when I wrote about Mick’s presence being felt at all gatherings? I feel I am no longer certain.

the 5 step essay writing process told me:  Excellent. For my post “Fête Nationale au Québec” – where I explain the June 24th holiday celebrated here in Quebec and in a few French speaking areas.  At least this one garnered approval, right?

independent essay writing question toefl told me:  I here am casual, but was specially registered at a forum to participate in discussion of this question. – for my post “Friday without Plans” – a silly post about going with the flow, weeds, flowers, stuff.  Not sure what they mean. Maybe I need to join a special forum to deal with this?


writing study abroad essay told me:  This variant does not approach me. Who else, what can prompt? for my post “Top of the Hill – What Pegman Saw” – A little story taking place in The Lake District of England about two people meeting at the top of a hill. This was a prompt post – apparently not a good one or maybe this story didn’t resonate. I’m not sure… it happens. We can’t please everyone…

writing good opening sentence for essay asked me:  Analogues are available? for my post “Advent Calendar – Day 24” where I introduce Yesterday and Today:  Merril’s Historial Musings – Hmmm… I dunno. I’ll have to ask Merril’s opinion on this one. Merril? Are analogues (sic) available? 😉

harvard summer school writing college essay exclaimed:  Here so history! for my post “Fun Night With the Piano Guys” I dunno… does nine years in business warrant being part of history already? Maybe these peeps foresee that these guys will make history or are making history. They are right, actually. These guys are fabulous.

essay writing format for high school students said:  So happens. Let’s discuss this question. for my post “A Better Plan – Crimson’s Creative Challenge #23” – about a couple spicing up their love life.  Maybe these peeps think I need therapy. I’ll consider it even though I think Bill and Gin are onto something…

And finally:

what is the big picture when writing an essay who apparently needs more deets:  I apologise, but you could not paint little bit more in detail. This for my post “Disturbed to Centred” – Maybe I should have given even more details, though these posts of mine tend to already be wordy. Maybe they didn’t understand what I meant about going from being frazzled to calm via a nice walk with Zeke and a chat with my new friend Marco. Not sure.


You may have noticed that all these “writers” have one thing in common.  They are all seemingly attempting to write essays.  Should I help them?




Expiration Date

Who the hell stamped me “Best Before —”? I am unsure of the exact date but it appears I may have passed my “Desirable Expiration Date”.  Never occurred to me that I might even have one.  I can’t help but think of that silly (not so silly) skit with Tina Fey, Julia Louis-Dreyfuss, Patricia Arquette and Amy Schumer.

Okay, okay, I know, I’m not an actress – so those sorta “rules” are not supposed to apply.  Right, uh huh, sure.  I may not get the gig either.

Oh, don’t get me wrong, I am very much desirable to the unavailable (read, married), older (you’re 72? I’m only 55, FFS!), substance-enhanced (read drunk or stoned).  Boy, they come at me hard (well, maybe not so much), lemme tell you. Really makes me feel sexy and desirable.  As if it is a turn on to be given a slot in the day when he is available for a quickie in a seedy motel:  “You don’t really want a drink or a meal do you? How ’bout I save a buck and go to your place?”  Or how about being told: “You turn me on, and I’m very romantic but I’m not into the deep dive coz…” Well, coz you’re too old, Dude, and sans blue or pink pill, the parts don’t function!  But the best is being approached by someone who is three sheets to the wind or buzzed out of his mind. Yeah, that really tells me how fabulous I am… truly. I do look my best when I’m blurry.

I am, of course generalizing here. Not all married men want just a quickie; not all older gents have issues; as for sex with drunks? No thanks, there I can say I have been there, done that, don’t want the t-shirt, or the lack of, um, satisfaction for all your going-nowhere efforts.

While I am not looking for a steady boyfriend and definitely not marriage, it would be nice to meet a fella or two with whom I could go on dates with. You know, dinner with interesting conversation and a movie and who knows, maybe a horizontal mambo should the desire strike us both – without the worry of someone being hurt, or business remaining unfinished, or feeling like I should find a bill or two on the nightstand.

I’m not dead yet – very much alive, to tell the truth – and though things may not be as quite fresh and firm as they once were, they are not that bad at all and still quite ripe (not yet over-ripe) for the picking, or more precisely, a fondling. The ladies my age and older (those who are still interested in romance and passion – and I respect those who have closed that door, even if I don’t understand it) know that we still have many good years ahead of us.

We want to feel the goosebumps with a light touch of fingertips and lips as we tilt our head back, exposing our neck. We want to feel the heat rise in our bellies and spread out through to the tips of our extremities, imbuing us a warm glow. Give us cause to catch our breath in anticipation of what comes next.

Nope.  My “Best Before” date has not arrived yet. But that doesn’t mean I don’t deserve something better.

Lyrics to the song are here.




All In One – Friday Fictioneers

Good Wednesday! It’s a chilly one in my neck of the woods! But boy does the sun shine bright (all the better to fool you into going outside!) I had no idea where to go with this one.  Stumped I was. Then I asked Rochelle if it was what I thought it was and she said it was, and then some, and then I thought well I know where Imma go with this one then… confused yet? Thought so. Thanks to Roger Bultot for allowing us to use his head-scratching (for me) photo. And always, ALWAYS, a thank you to Rochelle for hosting this weekly party.

Click me!

All In One

“Here it is!”

“Here what is?”

“Our new building!”

“Is that Hebrew up there? Is it a synagogue? Can they just sell religious buildings like that? And what do you mean, ‘our new apartment building’? What have you done?”

“Yes to all that. I bought us a building. We can live upstairs and have our businesses on the ground floor. My wood workshop will be in the back with a window to your café in the front so people can have a coffee and snack while they watch me build stuff. Whaddaya think?”

“I think you’re nuts.  I love it!”