The Seeds of Learning are in the Mistakes

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The day didn’t get off to a very good start.  I was jolted awake by the realization that a 10 am meeting might wipe out my self-imposed blog deadline.  Enter self-doubt.  Then there were about two hours worth of a couple of dozen false starts—write, delete, repeat.  Enter frustration.  No matter how hard I tried to force the issue, nothing worked except that I was getting nowhere at warp speed.  Enter arrgh!

Creativity on demand doesn’t always work out well.  Where is the go-with-the-flow?

The answer hit me when I took a wander-around break to clear the cobwebs out of my head.  Experts may disagree, but in my mind, the term ego is interchangeable with personality.  It just helps me to clarify things a little when I get confused about what’s what.  Or maybe with who’s who.

What’s what is that my creativity was hijacked by my ego.  The crafty little devil wanted to be in charge (so what else is new?) and was doing battle with my Higher Self for control.  Once I manage to to return to my right mind, that doesn’t always bode well for the ego.

After my little sojourn to the kitchen and back, I got it.  In my panic and haste to beat the clock, I didn’t take the time to sit down and have a little confab with my Self.  Uh oh—flunked meditation again and that means trouble.  That’s always a mistake.

But here’s the good news—every mistake comes with a lesson attached.  Today’s lesson is, don’t do that again!  It’s never a good idea to go running off into the day without stopping to check in with in my Self first because I’ll be led astray by the tricky ego every time.  It’s always comforting to remember that every mistake moves me one step closer to a happy ending.

Perhaps the worst mistake of all would be to leap back into life full-steam ahead without using this precious at-home time to delve deep within and connect with the part of me that knows and remembers that I am a Soul, not an ego.  Life just works better when viewed from a higher perspective.

There will come a day when this little pandemic vacation getaway will come to an end and then it’s hi ho, hi ho—it’s back to life we go, and I wonder—who will I be and what will I have learned when I come out the other side?  What will any of us have learned?

For now, all I know for sure is that it’s hi-ho, hi ho it’s off to a meeting I go.

And tomorrow and the next day too.  We’ll see how that goes . . .

Note:  The photo above is courtesy of New Waves of Light, a website designed by anonymous individuals around the world who share the intention of bringing light and love to a world of darkness and chaos. (newwavesoflight.org or NWOL.us).

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Charlie Calling—Or Is It My Soul?

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It’s not that I don’t like dogs, mind you.  It’s just that I like them a whole lot better when they belong to someone else.  Nope—no dog for me.

Get a dog.

Gee thanks, but no thanks.

And a few days later—

Get a dog.

The banter went on for weeks.

I was emphatic.  NO!  I don’t want a dog.  Ever.  I don’t want the responsibility, the expense, the restriction, the dog hair in the butter, the walks in nasty weather, the accidents on the carpet, the health issues, the suffering through the loss at the end.  No.  No dog for me.

Get a dog.

Finally, after several months of serious resistance, I gave up and got a dog.  Surrender Dorothy.

Enter Charlie, a Japanese Chin named Charlie Chin—a caramel sundae of a fluff ball that stole my heart and changed my world forever.  It would take too many words to tell you about the wonders or Charlie, or the gifts that he brought into my life, but maybe another day.

Even now after twelve years, it is difficult to fathom the profound lessons that came along wrapped in the package with Charlie.  Among the many, the one that stands above all others is the willingness to heed the call of the Inner Voice that knows what is best for the growth of the soul.

Trust me, I’ve heard about a bazillion voices throughout my lifetime, most of them annoying, confusing, obnoxious, and just plain downright not nice.   Thankfully through trial and error, I’ve managed to narrow them down to my favorites, the ones I call the committee in my head.  By the way, and just so you know, I never thought of myself as crazy.  Maybe a little misguided from time to time, but never crazy.  Misguided would be courtesy of listening to a bazillion wrong voices.  It pays to hear with a discerning ear.

Dogs don’t need to learn how to hear with a discerning ear because they already know.  Charlie was wise.  He knew how to just listen and be.  Sometimes I called him Yoda.  Charlie Chin Yoda.

I want to be just like him when I grow up.  I want to just listen and be.  I want to develop that inner wisdom and knowing that lives within the animal kingdom, and that also lives within us two-legged creatures, if we will just be still long enough to seek it within ourselves.

As we stay cloistered within the walls of our own homes, what better time to do just that—practice our communication skills with the wise Voice within—the voice that leads unfailingly down a path beyond fear and toward love.  We’re all going to get where we’re going eventually.  Guaranteed.  It’s just a matter of how long we’ll linger along the way.

Me?  I prefer sooner rather than later.  It’s why I got a dog.  And quit smoking, and knocked off the wine, and signed on for a daily blog.  I guess I’m in a bit of a hurry.  How about you?

Note:  The photo above is courtesy of New Waves of Light, a website designed by anonymous individuals around the world who share the intention of bringing light and love to a world of darkness and chaos. (newwavesoflight.org or NWOL.us).

Just Imagine

 

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Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Hmmm.  Day 748 of the virus shut-down and as each day passes the stack of stuff on my desk gets taller.  Yesterday I was going to tackle it right after I posted daily Voices.  Well, that didn’t happen, did it?

And why is that?

Well, my car died in the garage.  My friends Heather and Jim jump-started it and off we went to the dealer for a new battery and regular service, which of course required a return trip for pick up.  (Hint: it pays to start your car before 748 days roll by.)  Then there was a walk, a nap, and excessive trips to the kitchen for exercises in refrigerator foraging. Beyond that, I can’t remember.  If we all get out of this thing without becoming raging alcoholics, obsessive germaphobes, or the size of a blimp we’ll be on top of the game.

I just read a post by Tony Bologna (love the name) that talks about his fear of wasting time.  Not me.  I’m good at it—in fact, it’s what I do best.  Practice is the key.  Even as a child, I remember sitting idly on the back porch staring out into the space above neighboring rooftops and hanging out with myself just being.  It was glorious then, and it hasn’t lost its magic.  Maybe that’s what I was doing yesterday that I can’t remember.  Maybe I just zoned out on the world for a while.

On one hand, I might call it procrastination—another one of my strong points.  On the other, it could just be a matter of allowing my mind to drift off into the ethers where imagination lives, to a place where creation takes place and thoughts can be played out in the mind and possibilities explored, where futures can be written and rewritten based upon what feels like the best option, and where the mind can be used to heal, forgive, bless, and love.

So maybe I’ll get to that nagging stack of paper today before it topples over and buries me alive, or maybe not.  Maybe I’ll get to those phone calls that I’ve promised myself that I would make, or maybe not.  Recently, I’ve been hearing a lot of folks mumble about feeling lazy during this time, and putting off what doesn’t have to be done today because we seem to have a whole lot of tomorrows waiting in store.  Maybe not.

Maybe this is the perfect time to set aside the gotta-do’s and sit on the back porch and dream a while.  Dream of the possibilities.  Dream about how to create a new and better world, not just for yourself but for all of us.  Dream about what it would be like to live in a peaceful world where love is the leader and harmony rules.  What better moment than this to just sit, think, and dream up a new and vastly improved world?  As it is my assignment to write daily, perhaps it is also our joint assignment to write a new future for ourselves.  We have it in us.  We need only do it.

There really is a pot of gold at the end of the rainbow and it’s waiting for us to claim it.  So what say you?  Are you in?  Can you be counted on to help rewrite the future and dream up a new world?  Can you just imagine such a thing?  I hope so, because, let’s face it, we need all the help we can get.  You and your thoughts matter!

 

The Zig Zag Path to Enlightenment

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Good morning my Friends.  I seem to be having a challenging time getting my writing act together this morning.  Too many choices, too many possible directions.  Aborted starts and stops, headed somewhere, going nowhere.  Come to think of it, that sounds as bit like my life, doesn’t it?

It sounds quite a lot like your life, and like many others, We might add.

Shakespeare got it right when he said that all the world’s a stage and all the men and women merely players.  So true. So many roles, so many parts, so many characters.

Recently someone asked about my career.  That’s a tough question and the answer is elusive because I never really had a well-defined career path.  I just kind of zig-zagged my way through life selling whatever came along that I believed in enough to sell.  I usually lasted for about six years in each venture, and like a butterfly that sucked the essence out of each flower, I moved on to the next available role as soon as the essence had been extracted.  I didn’t exactly appear to be the pinnacle of stability.  In my defense I will say that my references were always outstanding—except for my three-month three-month stint selling prearranged funerals.  That was the pits and earned me my first and only mutual bye-bye experience.  Always in each role though, there was learning to be done, skills to hone, a craft to master.  Juicy essence indeed.

Though “Flaky” may have been my middle name, there were three constants that were the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow, three passions that moved me forward on the path in spite of occasional zig-zags and side trips on my disjointed career path.   Whatever the job du jour, I always kept my eye upon the donut and not upon the hole.  The donut was writing, cheerleading, and the search for enlightenment, not necessarily in that order.

There are so many roads to travel, so many choices, so many options to explore, so many possibilities, each one with its own set of consequences, with its own unique outcome.  Which one to pursue?  Decisions, decisions.  Not always my strong suit.

Hmmm.  Maybe there’s a way to toss my three passions into a blender and have them come out as a delicious smoothie.  Or maybe I’m confusing the blender with the holy grail.

Huh. I started out quoting Shakespeare and now I’ve morphed into Donna Quixote.

Well my Friends, it seems I’ve done all the talking here.  I didn’t leave any room for You.  In closing, is there anything that you would like to say?

Indeed, we would.  We are delighted that you are choosing to do what makes you truly happy.  Your willingness to overcome your misgivings about your writing commitment is a major step up the ladder toward enlightenment.  It is an assignment, and you are fulfilling it.  That you are doing so makes Us happy.  You have our continuing love and support.

And that makes me happy.  Thank you for being my cheerleaders, dear Friends.

 

Follow Your Heart Home

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This morning  I found myself asking why I have suddenly decided to renew a commitment to write a daily blog.  As I sort through the myriad of answers, I discover that yet again I experience some of the same-old, same-old hitches in my git-along that I thought (hoped) were long gone.  Guess not.  An intertwined mixture of altruistic and egotistic reasons drift by.  I don’t always like what I see, but if I can see it, I can change it.  Again.  Sigh.  I thought I already had.

This morning as I sat struggling with today’s blog and asking myself the eternal “why” question I pondered whether or not my efforts are worth it.  It was just about then that I received validation in the form of an email telling me that someone had just pushed the “follow” button on Voices in my Head.  Ah.  Maybe the effort is worth the effort after all.  In case you are wondering, Christian, that was you.  Thank you.

Part of my wondering process brought to mind another question—or maybe more of a concern.  Is a daily blog too much?  Does it clog up an already-clogged inbox and incite one to delete, delete, delete?  Egotistically, of course, I’d love it if everyone would read and hang on to every word I write.  Realistically, however, that ain’t never gonna happen and understandably so, because there is not a blog in the world that will appeal to everyone, most especially the type of which I write.

I speak to you from the heart because I know that beneath the skin, we are all one in spite of the appearance of our differences.  And yet in spite of our many varieties, inside we are part of the same family, brothers and sisters living together in the vast universe that we call home.  We need to take care of each other, and we need to take care of our home.

I guess that I just answered my own question.  Yes, it’s worth the effort because you all are my family and I love you.  I want the best for you.  I want you to love yourself as much as I love you.  Ah.  There’s the altruistic part.  That’s the part of myself that I love the most.

As you navigate your way through this strange and baffling time in which we live, I hope that you know that you are loved and supported by a myriad of people in the world who carry a torch to light your path and help you find your way through the dark to your true home.

Follow the light and it will lead you to boundless love and irrepressible joy.

Love and blessings to all!

Note:  The beautiful image and meme above are courtesy of New Waves of Light (nwol.us).

In Search of Truth

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My current favorite pandemic meme came straight from of jaws of Facebook and suggests that perhaps God is sending us all to our rooms to give us time to consider what we’ve done.

Oh my.  Well that could be a scary thought.

Oh?  And why is that?

Well, duh.  It could bring up all sorts of hidden stuff like guilt, and what I did wrong, and what I didn’t do that I should have, and what I did that I shouldn’t have.  You know stuff like that.

That is true.  And would that be such a bad thing?

Well it wouldn’t be very much of a comfort.  I mean, after all, who wants to see the parts and pieces of themselves that they’ve been hiding from for a lifetime?

Ah. Perhaps you speak of the ego, the personality, the “small” self of the individual that feels disconnected from the larger Self.  And speaking of disconnection, We sense that you have allowed yourself to drift off into the world of ego and are considering the impact of today’s writing upon the reader.

Oops.  You would be correct.

May we remind you that your task is to simply write?  There is no need for you to judge the words, nor how they may be perceived by those who read them.

Thank you.  But it is still a little tempting to get a bit squirrely about whether or not I’ll be considered nuts.

We understand.  And again, We remind you that what others think of you is irrelevant, for they will see you through the lens of their own perspective.  We know that remnants of self-doubt occasionally rise up and play a role in your actions, choices, and decisions, and clearly, We see that this is one such occasion.  We applaud the progress that you have made thus far in releasing this obstacle that occasionally stands in the way of your peace of mind, and for the courage it takes for your willingness to be transparent.  Under these circumstances it is natural then, that a sense of hesitancy still exists.

Again, you would be correct.  But I’ll get over it.  Today for the first time since the pandemic lock-down, there is a bit of structure to my day and I need to get on the move.  But I promised myself that I would blog every day, and today, this is it.  How do I feel about it?  I don’t know.  But I’ll push the publish button anyway, and let the chips fall where they may.  There are lessons to be learned in every situation, and I’m happy to learn mine, no matter now comfortable or uncomfortable they may be.

Thanks Pandemic for this opportunity to stop and consider what I have done.  Oh—and to love and forgive myself for whatever it is that I think I may have done wrong.

Happy Easter everyone.  May we rise up together into a glorious new beginning!

PS:  If you are dazed and confused by what you just read (if in fact you even made it this far), it may be because you missed the last one or two blogs.  Reading them will put this one in context.

Note:  The beautiful image and meme are courtesy of New Waves of Light (NWOL.us).

 

A New Day is Dawning

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Today as I was scrambling around in my head trying to make sense out of the contents of my mind, it dawned on me that I am currently long on self-doubt and procrastination and short on purpose, perseverance, and action.  As a “shut-in” along with the rest of the world during this historic pandemic, there is not much to do now except to sit down and look within to see where I can make a few in-flight corrections.

As I sit and stare at my current state of mind, I am reminded of a time many years ago when, during a time of meditation, I was given a set of instructions.

“Make a commitment to write!”

“Write what?” I asked?  “Anything!” came the response.

Let the dialog begin!  Apparently, it is no accident that this blog is titled “Voices in my Head”.

After days of resistance and repeated cajoling from whoever or whatever that Voice is, I gave in and sat down in front of a keyboard and stared at a blank piece of paper and wrote anything.  Astes erwoi 9 hhta the cow jumped over the moon.

After many hours of cows and moons, there emerged a writing adventure called Conversations with Myself.  Conversations was a journal, a daily dialogue betwixt me, myself, and I, and the committee in my head that vied for power over who was to be in control.  It was often a fascinating dialogue.

The writing was intensely personal and self-revealing, written with the hope that perhaps the revelation of my personal journey and inner battle with myself could help, uplift, and inspire others who shared similar struggles to make their way easier.

Sometimes I would muster up the courage to show it to a trusted friend or two.  Always the response was encouraging and positive, but when I sent it out to one publisher it was rejected.  After that, I gave up and Conversations made its way into a carton that was buried deep within the recesses of a closet and my mind, along with any delusions of thinking that my various voices and mind wanderings would ever serve as a tool for helping others like myself.  Eventually it was sucked into the jaws of a passing trash truck and was lost and gone forever.  Fear became the winner in that fray.

Decades have passed since those days and yet sometimes I still do battle with myself over one thing or another.  Today it’s about not living up to my own potential.  There is not a soul alive on the planet who is not born with certain gifts and talents.  I know that I am a writer and I am not using that gift to the fullest extent possible.  So, today in the midst of this pandemic, my game plan is to dust off my writing skills and just do it.  No more hiding out in the closet for me!  If only one person gains benefit from the various voices in my head, then I can cross “live up to potential” off my list, at least in one small area of my life.

Today is a new day.  It is the perfect time to begin again with an updated purpose and refreshed commitment to resume Conversations.  From past experience I know that sometimes my commitments are strong and powerful and sometimes they’re a little shaky.  If I’m not back tomorrow, I’m going to need a few prayers.  All help gratefully accepted.

Meanwhile, I ask you to consider that the old will be gone forever, and invite you to let the promise of a New Age blossom in your heart and spark your imagination to create a vision of how you would like the world to be when this is all over.  Together we can make it so.

Please be well in heart, mind, body, and spirit.

With love from me and the cacophony of voices in my head, Julia

(Photo and meme courtesy of New Waves of Light (nwol.us).  Please feel free to share.

 

 

 

My Computer My Self

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Photo by Markus Spiske temporausch.com on Pexels.com

To the casual observer, one might call my minimalistic living environment pristine.  What lurks behind closed doors, however, tells a very different story—one that I sincerely hope does not reflect a mirror image of the content of my mind.

Whenever I am struck by inspiration and courage to bravely venture into a closet or peek into the innards of my computer to clean something out, I am struck dumb by what I face.  Be it old writing or old clothing, the fire of my determination fades quickly into a sad little heap of dying embers and is quickly replaced by an overwhelming sense of hopelessness at the prospect of trying to make sense out of anything.

The possibilities are endless and stretch the limits of my decision-making ability to infinity and beyond.  To publish or delete?  To save or not save?  To sell or give away?   Will I ever wear it again?  Have I worn it in a year?  Does it need altering or editing?  Will anyone want to read it?  Is it any good? Do I like it?  Would anyone else like it?  Is it worth anything? Does it make any sense? Does it have any holes in it?  Well, you get the gist . . .

In a recent fit of “Let’s get organized” I courageously dug into some files from yesteryear, and yet again, I collapsed into a fit of overwhelm at my total and complete, utter lack of organization.  Stuff is spread hither, thither, and yon with little, if any hope of ever being brought together in one miniscule space of coherence and/or organization. If ever I have a hope of getting my act together, I’ll need at least another dozen lifetimes or so.

But I do want to start somewhere (wherever that is) so I tiptoed into my computer closet and gingerly emerged with a piece of writing from 2007, and again am bombarded with the questions.   What should I do with it?  Delete? Publish?  Save for later?  Well, maybe that’s not the best option—it has already been saved for twelve years.  Maybe the decision is just about making a decision.

Well, over a decade later, I’ve finally settled on a solution (some of us are a little slow you know). The decision is—ta dah—pluck one thing at a time out of the closet, and do something with it.

Turn it into a blog. Compile it into a book. Whatever.  It doesn’t matter.  Just DO it.  Maybe someday it will start to make sense, but at least for now, one step forward–even if it’s wrong–is better than no step at all.  Just one little tidbit dragged out of the dark and into the light, lightens and brightens my world because that’s one less bit of clutter to deal with tomorrow.

So what’s it gonna be? Today it’s going to be a blog until maybe some day in the future I can figure out how to get organized enough to turn it into a book.  The first chapter might be all about clutter.  I’m an expert, after all.  Meanwhile, till I get my act together, it’s one day and one piece at a time.  Maybe tomorrow or the next day that bit from 2007 will see the light of day.  Wish it luck.  And me too.

Onward and upward!  Out of the dark and into the light!

 

 

 

Lost in a Maze

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Photo by Flo Maderebner on Pexels.com

I arrived frustrated and frazzled at the destination where my niece and I planned to have lunch.   Along the way I became hopelessly lost in the maze of the parking lot at the mall.  Don’t laugh.  If you’ve never been lost in a mall, it’s because you’ve never been to the Galleria in Tyson’s Corner, VA.  It’s a nightmare to this Marylander, as are the highways that I must travel just to get there.  The mere thought of accidentally getting caught up in the frightening tangle of HOV lanes and not being able to get off until I reach China grips me with the gut-wrenching fear that I may never be seen or heard from again.

I called my niece to tell her that I was hopelessly lost and in her kind and gentle way, she provided me with the directions that I needed to get myself back on track.  That said, she told me that she was going to hang up, park, get a table, and wait for me.

“Nooo” I pleaded! Please don’t leave me! Please hang in there with me until I get there!  She did, I got there, and we found each other in the parking lot, gave each other a gigantic hug, and headed toward lunch.  What a blessed relief!  God bless her.  God bless cell phones.

“You’re going to turn this into a blog,” she quipped before we had even entered the building.  I hadn’t considered the possibility, but since she put the idea into my head, I thought, “Why not?”  It seemed like a fairly reasonable challenge—certainly one that was easier than finding the Cheesecake Factory amidst the myriad of storefronts and garage entrances.

It’s bad enough to be lost in the mall, but add to that the fact that it’s not the first time I’ve done it.   Oh no, no. It happens every time I dare venture into the mystery maze of the Galleria.  Repeating a mistake over and over is enough to send me into a wailing fit of “Why God?  Why do I keep doing the same stupid thing again and again?  When will I ever learn?“

Well now, isn’t that just the question of the century!?  Why God?  Why do I keep doing the same stupid thing again and again?  When will I ever learn?

Like dear Connie, God is patient.  God is kind. God listens to and hears my desperate calls for help.  God waits for me and hangs in there with me as I bumble my way through life making wrong turns and bad decisions, and while I blindly stumble along making the same mistakes over and over, mistakes that leave me feeling befuddled, frustrated and stupid.

But it’s all okay, because just like Connie, God will be there to provide gentle guidance along the way, wait for me, and when I arrive, He’ll rejoice because I finally made it to my destination.  It’s always reassuring to know that no matter what, I’ll find my way back home.  He knows that I will, and I know that I will—it’s just a matter of when.  Now would be good.

To Do or Not to Do?

 

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Photo by Breakingpic on Pexels.com

I’m not a Catholic girl, but recently I’ve noticed a tendency to want to start new blogs with, “Forgive me Father, it has been 13 days since my last blog.”  I’m not quite sure what I need to be forgiven for, but I have concluded that clearly, it must have something to do with myself.  Whatever.  Maybe the answer to that will become clear as this blog—or this day—or this lifetime moves on.  We’ll see.  Or not.

I’ve done a lot of blog stop-starts in the past few days but they are just that.  Starts and stops.  Life is like that sometimes—a series of starting stuff that I don’t finish.  Maybe that’swhat I need to forgive myself for, especially those days when I just can’t seem to get out of my own way.  Heaven help me—I’m in a blog fog!

A few days ago when lethargy was the order of the day, I blamed it on post Royal Wedding Blues. All of that glorious anticipation and activity leading up to The Great Moment when Harry and Meghan finally tied the knot and we all had our curious little questions answered.  Will Harry wear a uniform and keep his beard? Will he wear a wedding ring? Who will walk Meghan down the aisle?  What will her dress be like and who was the designer?  You know—all of those intriguing questions that tickled the world’s fancy for weeks on end.

Well it was either that, or a week of grey gloomy weather that added to the post wedding blues that got me, or maybe a combination platter.  Whatever it was, voila!  Instant depression.  How depressing!

Okay so today is a whole new day and I’m over it.  I’ve allowed myself the luxury of a full do-nothing, guilt-free, three-day wallow and now it’s time to move on.  There is something really therapeutic about giving oneself the gift of a good wallow, provided it is not allowed to go on for too long lest it become self-defeating hence unhealthy.  Three days max.

Now here I am, fresh as a daisy, bright as a star with a whole day (albeit another gloomy one) in front of me with nothing on my calendar and nothing pressing to do.  So many options, so many choices!  In her recent blog, Natalietalksabout.com inspired me to declutter a jewelry drawer.  I could do that, I suppose.  Or write a blog about decluttering (and with any luck it might even make it to the finish line).  Or I could stop procrastinating and plant some flowers and herbs in the pots on my balcony.  Well maybe—I never like to rush into anything.  Whoa–were those the Blue Angels that just streaked overhead past my balcony?  If I had been out there tending to pots, perhaps I wouldn’t have missed seeing them.  Oh well–maybe later–

Meanwhile, lest I fritter away the entire day in indecision mode, best I pick one and just DO it.  So here I am DOING it, and as it turns out, the IT is a blog.  Well, whatdya know—I think maybe it might even be finished.  Today there is hope about making it as far as the jewelry drawer.  I’m not too sure about those empty pots however but God willing, tomorrow is another day.

Hot dog.  Today there is nothing to feel guilty about or forgive myself for.  Not today, not any day, no matter how naughty I think that I may have been. God bless God for giving us do-over’s—the chance to fix what isn’t really broken in the first place.  I’ll drink to that.  Except that I don’t drink anymore.  Drat.  Maybe I’ll just celebrate with a push of the post button and dance a little happy dance instead.

Ye haw.  Thank you God!