Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Food for Thought: The Last Day of the Year...

It's the very last day of the year.

And I am sitting here at work, reading reports. And this particular report that I'm reading is very much bootleg. So much so that I need to fire off an email to someone... somewhere.

I've spent the past hour reading this particular report. Sigh.

And now, I am looking out the window. The sun is shining. It makes me wish that I would've taken the day off. Why? Because it has been dreary all week. How nice it would be to be out enjoying this nice nice sunshine, even though it's a bit nippy out. I could be anywhere but here. I could be at home, cleaning up (like I need to do anyway). Or I could be relaxing on the sofa, watching a movie. I could be holding Oscar-Tyrone, rubbing his tummy, and listening to him purr.

Anything besides reading this report from some private lab and checking it for errors and applying my expertise and making a judgement call as to whether it passes or fails.

I've been working on this for the past hour.

I wrote that earlier today while at work. As you could see, I had taken a break from my reading.

With that said, I want to to post a quote of the year.

It is an interesting quote.

An appropriate quote, it is. Almost a bridge of sorts.

A connector, a walkway bridging 2013 and 2014.

You work 8 hours a day to fulfill someone else's vision. But don't forget that you have a vision of your own, a vision that's also important, if not more important than that workplace vision that you work so hard to fulfill... day after day after day.

Make sure you take time to fulfill YOUR vision.

I heard that quote a month ago on "black talk radio", i.e., the African American themed AM talk show station here in Atlanta. I'm not sure what the general discussion was about because I was on my way to work and just trying to hear the morning traffic and weather reports. I don't listen to urban music radio. I rather listen to talk radio... I never know when I will pick up something substantial and "meaty", like the quote above.

I told my boss, "Honey, if I could have jumped out my car on the freeway and did a church shout and a church spin I would have."

Why? Because it was so powerful... and true.

I have been thinking about it for over a month.

I work 40 hours a week to fulfill someone else's vision.

What on earth would happen if I put the same amount of time into fulfilling my own vision?

Hold up.

What if I put a fraction of the time into fullfilling my own vision?

You know, putting 5 to 10% of the time into my vision per week would move it forward.

It really would.

I wrote a post about time this month.  5% or 10% may not sound like much.

But what would it mean over a span of time?

That's beside the point right now (somewhat).

I am not my job.

I am a collection of the plethora of dreams, goals, purposes, and visions that are in my heart. I have always been taught that all those things are little seeds that God sows into my heart. And I am to nurture and respect and cultivate that.

And don't get me wrong. I am good at my job (at least I think I am). I have a doctorate in the area of my expertise. I have learned to not be onery about my job. I remember praying and asking for forgiveness for my attitude because I had to realize, not everyone gets to work on world crises issues. It is something else to watch the world news and they are discussing the crises going on... and to know that I am working in the lab on the very problem, working with other chemists around the country, discussing the darn thing.

That is one fortunate thing, it is. Not everybody can say that.

That is my talent, though.

I heard a fascinating sermon some years ago by my very own pastor, where he proposed that there is a difference between your talents and your God-given purpose. And how not to get those things confused. In fact, you are annointed to carry out the vision that God has placed in your heart...

... And some of that annointing leaks over onto your talents. And it explains why you are successful in your employment. Even though that employment is not fulfilling your innermost being.

Hmm. A bold proposal. I have been thinking about it every since.

I was sitting with my friend Dawn the other night after our writing workshop, working with her on her crochet project, and she said something that fascinated me:

She doesn't know the details of her friends' jobs. But she does know the details of their heart's desires: their vision, their purposes and dreams.

That fascinated me. And just thinking about it, I am the same way. I think of my friends in terms of their heart's desires. Their vision.


And, getting back to the quote, we should spend time nurturing that vision...

Even in the midst of spending so much carrying out the vision and "mission statement" of another (our jobs).

Just a little something for you (and I) to ponder for the new year.

Feels good to end the year with a Food-for-Thought post.

Let's let 2014 be the year that we work on our visions...

Let it be a year we fulfill our own visions.


Monday, December 30, 2013

Monday Night Fights... The Year End Edition

Alright ya'll...

1 more day until the year is OVER.  The year is 99.5 percent over. We still have a chance to get it ALL done. A chance to get ALL those resolutions we made back in January done.

Maybe it's like some of these phone plans with the roll over minutes: roll those resolutions right on over to 2014.

I don't do New Years resolutions.

I don't need resolutions.  This Oldgirl needs revelations.

I have a TON of food for thought post ideas, but I think I will save them for the new year. Likewise, I have spent the past couple of weeks in reflection mode, reflecting on various events that have affected my life over the last year. I think I will save those for when the year is complete. Tomorrow is not promised. And it is a good thing to even make it to the next year. I won't assume anything with one day left.

So I will save it all for the New Year.

Do I have any goals for the New Year? I suppose I do. I have friends that have all these big goals, and I feel like such a bystander listening to them, silently wishing that I had big goals for myself. I learned awhile ago that for a goal to be truly a goal, it must be written down.

And then there is this Quote of the Week, which I posted this summer, I believe.

Common people have goals. Exceptional people have strategies. 

I have felt quite... common this year. Yet, I was telling a friend, I get a LOT of things done.  I make a lot of short term goals.

How much more could I get done if I had... strategies?

Hmm. I ponder, and continue to wonder.

I tell you one thing, though. I have enjoyed posting every day. I haven't been posting much of anything too serious, but I have been posting nevertheless. That makes me very happy.

I wanted to give away a couple of gift cards during this time, but I decided against it. My 44th birthday is in February, so I will have a giveaway then.

For now, I will allow you all to sit and stare from Lurk City.

Song of the Week. You should know by now that I looooove some Kendrick Lamar. Oh yes I do. I don't listen to current music, but I listen to him. Many have given me some rappers to listen to, but sorry... they are all rapping about the same thing. No wonder Kendrick Lamar hollered he was the king of New York (which shook up the whole rap world for a minute). And his CD was so great that he had the right to scream it as far as I am concerned. But I'm not a rap afficiado. I prefer the old school rap.

But I like his CD. And I really like the message of this song (warning: explicit version).

A funeral for molly. Good deal. I'ma need ya'll to get off the stuff. Bad for your health.

I like the original sample used for that song MUCH more.. a song by some swedish or denmark band.

That makes me want to delve a little more into some foreign tunes next year. Yes it does.

That is all for today.

Go head on and get whatever needs to be done now while we have a few hours left in the year.

Because next year...

It's out with the old- old attitudes, old hurts and pains, old habits, all that old stuff that is keeping us from reaching our dreams...

And in with the new... ON PURPOSE.

(Really though).

Sunday, December 29, 2013

Simply Sunday: Picture Edition

It is technically Monday, but since I am still awake around 12:30 am, I consider it Sunday.

I still want to put up a post, man. I will backdate it. I was thinking about it around 11:30 p.m.

A couple of pictures from my weekend.

I have been pushing to get my hair cut. I get a bit upset when I have to wake up every morning and run a comb through my hair. So I was happy to get a haircut finally.

I can't believe I'm going gray on my edges. I'll be 44 soon, so I guess it's bound to happen. I still think I am 25, lol.

I'm not going to complain about it. I'm not going to dye my hair, as I don't understand the whole dye thing.e thing. (And I can't see that being good for me. Lord knows I don't want to deal with any reactions).

I like my gray. That comes along with all this wisdom I have. Yes indeed.

I have to put that picture up for Serenity23. She's always trying to be like me. I'm wondering if she will get hers cut that low? Hmm...

I had a writing workshop this afternoon. And I didn't get home until an hour ago.

No we didn't write for 7 or 8 hours. We wrote for a couple of hours. Afterwards, my writing facilitator Dawn and I talked about her current crochet project. She has crocheted 280 squares so far. She has another 150 to go, I believe. Tonight we worked on linking the squares together.

Here's a picture next to my stockined foot.

That's not quiet a stocking. It's a tube sock. But stocking sounds good.

I am proud of her. She was a bit overwhelmed, but she keeps pushing forward.  I was a tad bit perplexed by her tales of crocheting squares while out for drinks with friends... and while at the casino.  Needless to say, she is the butt of many jokes and laughter (I do believed I would have joned her out after a few drinks my ownself). But she keeps trying. And that is all that matters.

Crocheting in Casinos and bars... I guess when you gotta get it done, you gotta get it done. That's called being tenacious. And that she is. I can learn a good lesson or two from that to carry me over into the New Year.

And that's it for Simply Sunday.

A simple relaxing Sunday.

Saturday, December 28, 2013

Saturday 7

Here we go again with another Saturday 7!

1. It was dreary this morning, and rain was in the forecast. They even issued a flash flood watch for 1:00 pm today. This didn't matter, as it is a Saturday. I could just lay in my bed and sleep the day away, right? Wrong.

2. I couldn't sleep the day away because I had a haircut appointment at 2:00 pm.  So much for staying out of the rain.

3. My last haircut was in September... so I really needed to go, even though my hair only grew less than half an inch. It was sho nuff... kinky. It was either get it all cut off or slap a perm in it.

4. To make things worse, Aunt Flo is here. And you know how I am during that time. I am like the women of the bible: pitch a tent for me on the outskirts of the city and let me just sit there in solitude. That means I just want to be alone and sleep. But I couldn't do that when I needed this haircut.

5. I always have grand plans for weekend chores. They are grand indeed. But I didn't get much done today. I cleaned up the kitchen and I managed to wash clothes. I kept laying back down.

6. My writing workshop facilitator Dawn called talking about a workshop tomorrow. After my whining about how Aunt Flo is here and I want to lay down somewhere, I agreed to a workshop tomorrow. I went by the Whole Foods for some fruit for the ladies. She wanted me to pick up some strange biscotti cookies or crackers. I didn't see them. I guess I will be baking cookies tomorrow. Sigh.

7. Hair appointment went well. I look cute, and I feel free. And my barber Mr. Soho didn't give me that hard of a time. However, he doesn't like when I frown up while he's cutting. He kept saying "Stop it!".  My frowning is not my fault. That razor sounds like a dentist's drill. My dentist says "Stop it!" also. I wonder if they know each other. LOL

That's it for Saturday 7.  Nice easy day... and that's the way I like 'em.

Friday, December 27, 2013

Christmas Dinner 2013

I prepared Christmas dinner this year. That was fine since I didn't cook for Thanksgiving.

My sister asked me a couple of weeks ago what I was doing for Christmas. I said nothing. (We don't have family gatherings for holidays. The last family gathering was when my brother Milk and Cookies came home from his deployment to Iraq.)

So she said she was coming over. And that meant I needed to cook.

Now I don't mind doing the whole traditional Christmas dinner cooking. She knows that. As long as she takes everything home with her. I don't eat a lot of meat, so any turkey leftovers left in the fridge will go bad.

But she wanted a plant based dinner... a vegetarian dinner. Heck, that is right up my alley. I could do that!

However I ask if she was SURE she didn't want turkey and dressing. She was... hesitant.


So Christmas morning, I started cooking!  Here are, as we say in organic chemistry, my "starting materials"

I bought a plate of dressing from Big Daddy's dish, sauteed some more onions and peppers and threw them in there. Our student worker Kel is a vegetarian, and she said her father had found a stuffed mushroom recipe to acommadate her. I thought I would do something similar.

So here are the final dishes...

Sauteed kale and squash.

Sweet potato/ pear casserole, black eye peas, sweet english peas, wild rice and cornbread dressing...
Green beans...

And I stuffed the mushrooms with dressing. I also stuffed them with a wild rice mix (wild rice, pecans, cranberries- bought at whole foods).  And I also made roasted brussel sprouts (with basalmic vinegar)
Here's my sister's plate.
That's a nice healthy plate.

And Kentucky is kicking some nice fingernail polish there. I must take that from her.

That's my Christmas dinner.

I meant to roast some okra, but I totally forgot about it. I will do that this weekend. And we also nixed the salad. She didn't want any.

Oh, and we had pomegrante chip coconut icecream and almond/cashew vanilla ice cream.  I bought those because Kentucky has never had non-dairy based ice cream. I bought some that I eat from time to time. They are expensive ($6-8 a pint). But she wanted to know her alternatives.

Kentucky made some EXCELLENT chocolate zuchinni brownies. Excellent. Zuchinni (or spinach) relpaces the milk and eggs in a recipe.  I need that recipe from her. Or ask her to make some, lol.

We had a very good dinner overall, with not much "'itis" afterwards. And that was good.

And we had plenty of leftovers. Trust me, those won't go to waste. No sir. No ma'am.

No way!

Thursday, December 26, 2013

Christmas Day Equals Movie Day

My sister and I hung out on Christmas. We broke in my new Roku, i.e, we watched movies allllllll day long!

Action overload indeed!

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Christmas Tree and More...

I never put up a Christmas tree. I don't see the point, since it is just me. I was told I cold buy a small 2 foot tall tree, already decorated, and sit it up on top of the book shelf. I have been meaning to do so... just haven't got around to it.

However, I do love a good tree. I see nice ones every year.

This year, I saw a fantastic tree at Franks at the Old mill restaurant. I was in such awe that I had to snap a picture!

How wonderful is that!? That must've taken all day to decorate.

Lo and behold, the fireplace was nicely decorated... There was a roaring fire going.
I was so excited. I was down that way for a doctor's appointment, and I stopped by for some fish and chips. I was not expecting such a wonderful Christmas atmosphere.

They were even playing Bing Crosby. I wanted to get everyone to hold hands, so we could sing along!


Franks serves the best food, in such a nice atmosphere. I love going there, even though it is a rarity.

After I got my fish and chips to-go plate, I went outside to harass the swans.
They had the look that said "Why you have us swimming all the way over here, and you're not throwing some bread our way!?"

Because... I'm being a jerk. That's why... little swans.

Now swim away! Swim away, I say!

Ha ha.

Oh... and the fish and chips..

Oh my. Talk about good! Squeeze that lemon over it all and you're talking about good eating! Good eating!

I want some more. Next doctor appointment out that way isn't until JUNE. I guess I will just wait. Makes it taste better.

I will eat my veggies until then, honey!

So that's my christmas tree... and my Christmas fireplace...

But that is NOT my Christmas meal... just a little something I order when on that side of town.

Christmas dinner this year will be...

Spring greens salad
Roasted brussel sprouts
Sauteed kale
yellow squash
sweet potato/pear casserole
sauteed green beans w/roasted pecans
Crimini mushrooms stuffed with cornbread dressing
sweet peas
black-eye peas
vanilla ice cream (made with almond milk)
pomegrante chip ice cream (made with coconut milk)
cranberry lemon and orange infused water

Oh yes. I think I might like that better than fish and chips. And my sister and I will have meals for the rest of the week. 

Hmm, hmm good. 


I'm missing the cranberry sauce, though... 

Doggonit... gotta go back to the store!

Monday, December 23, 2013

Sunday, December 22, 2013

Simply Sunday

It is Sunday once again.

I wanted to get out and run a few errands but it has been storming all day. No way I'm getting out in that. Yesterday was yucky and overcast, but there were just a few sprinkles. I don't mind getting out in that. But I don't like driving in full blown rain.

So it was a day of napping and lounging around. I didn't get many chores done. I managed to clean the laundry room and do all my laundry. I fiddled around with the new gadgets I bought yesterday. Like I said, those wireless headphones must go back. Everything else looks okay. I still haven't hooked up the roku. My little flat screen TV is not HDTV. And I have a tube tv in the living room. I have to try and hook it up upstairs.

I am watching Snapped right now. This show reminds me that white folks have isshas just like everybody else, no matter how much they try to hide it. Some of these shows are repetitive. I wanna holler "Girl, didn't you see Snapped the other day? You doing the same thing that other chicken was doing. She didn't get away with it and neither will YOU!"

And that's life really.

I watched a pretty good movie today.  Pacific Rim.

Now, it was a bit cheesy. It was definitely on some Transfomers meets Godzilla type of craziness, but it was a good movie. Those were some of the scariest monsters I'd ever seen. I would've liked to have seen it in IMAX 3D.

Idris Elba was in the movie. THAT in itself made it something of interest.

I saw him and leaned in and I said "Well, well! What do we have here?!?"

Hershey bar dark fineness. That is all.

Good movie. I may purchase it for my kindle. Once the price comes down.

Church was good today. I want to write a post on it, but that would be way too long. Instead, I will post one of the more memorable quotes of the day, one from Joel Osteen...

"Negative words are like seeds. You dwell on them long enough, they will take root... and produce."

Sure will produce. Negative fruit . I don't want that, man.

You know how I feel about seeds, and roots and fruits and the like. I perked up when I heard that. I might have to go back and watch that again. It was about how your whole life could be messed up for years and years just because someone said that you weren't good enough, you weren't smart enough, you'd never do nothing with your life, etc. It was about rejecting all those negative labels.

Amen. Amen again. And again.

Good sermon. If someone would've tried to slap a negative label on me after hearing that sermon, I mighta had to open my Good Book of Cuss on them. Really.

I am hoping for a decent week. Better not be a ton of work to do. There are only a three or four people from my work group available on Monday and Tuesday. And only two of us on Thursday and Friday. All I want is QUIET. I have a ton of maintenance to do on equipment, so I want to get going on that. I am hearing we might get a half day off on Christmas Eve. I will believe it when I see it.

I am doing well with this daily posting, aren't I?

I'm sorry it's not all dramatic. Just my day to day ramblings.

Well maybe I'm not sorry about that.

I like things simple... and smurfy.

Saturday, December 21, 2013

Saturday Seven

Only a few days before Christmas, and the streets and stores are crowded.

And I know this because I was out in it.

Normally I don't get with the hustle and bustle. But I've worked all week and had no choice.

So I crunk up ol' Pam, and I headed out.  I bought a plethora of items today. So I thought today's Saturday Seven would be a list of what I bought today.

1. A wireless speaker. I have been eyeing this speaker for the past year. I finally bought it. I haven't used it because it has to charge up. Sigh.

2. A pair of wireless headphones. I was REALLY excited about these. I have used them and I have to take them back. They hurt my ears, and they gave me a headache. I don't do well with rigid headphones at all. Those are going back. After the Christmas rush, of course.

3. An ice cream scooper. A REALLY nice and fancy one, not one of those cheap ones.

4. Two crochet needles. I didn't really need them. But it never hurts to buy them and put them up. I tend to lose these easily. Instead of looking for them, I open the utility drawer in the kitchen and retrieve a nice new one. (I find the lost ones while cleaning up. Usually they are between the couch cushions).

5. Toothbrush. My old one in the downstairs bathroom is getting soft. I am too lazy to go upstairs to use my newer one. Easier to buy another one!

6. Gift Cards. I bought two gift cards for my sister today. One is a from a juice bar, and the other is a gas card. Someone at work said I should give her a "real" gas card, i.e., a $200 or $300 gas card. *crickets*... Uh, no. That girl would do cartwheels up and down the street if I did that, lol. Wish I could, though. She is a great sister and deserves it.

Anyway, I want to buy one more card, from the Whole Foods or the Farmers Market.

7. A Roku 3. Yes I bought a Roku, which is a streaming device for the TV. I have netflix, and my sister has hulu, and between the two of us, we got it going on. I can even stream my spotify on my television. GLORY!

So that's it for Saturday 7.

I hope you had a great Saturday. Enjoy the rest of your weekend!

Friday, December 20, 2013

Friday Freestyles

Alright ya'll!


11 days before 2013 is a thing of the past.

And it's only 5 days before Christmas!

So you better get out here and make it do what it do.

I haven't done any Christmas shopping. So I'm doing that in the morning, along with my grocery shopping for Christmas dinner.

My shopping will only take a couple of hours. Only buying gift cards for my sister Kentucky - a gas card, and a few other gift cards.

I am going to the electronics store and get some things for myself. I want a Roku. And a wireless printer. And whatever else I can buy, lol.

I'm not being selfish. I just don't do the whole Christmas thing well - buying gifts for everybody under the sun, etc.

My loooooooove and friendship should be enough. I am the gift that keeps on giving.

*ladylee slaps a huge red bow on her forehead and gives you a big virtual hug*

Although... I did mail a FANTASTIC gift this morning. Simply FANTASTIC. AWESOME!! When this person gets my gift, they will indeed think I am Santa Claus! LOL

I will post that up next week. (Those of you who know what it is... SHUT UP! Don't say a word).

That is the gist of it.

I am working all next week, except for Christmas day. I have a little freedom to work some half days, but I am looking forward to the "quiet" of the week, when there aren't many employees around. I get much done during those times. It's like working on a Saturday. Nice... Quiet... Productive...

Nothing much else to say today... I thought I would leave you with a quote of the day...

People can't make you angry without your consent.

Really though.

And on that note... Have a good weekend.

On purpose.

Thursday, December 19, 2013

For the True Pumpkin Eaters...


I'm buying cans of it right now. Not for myself. But for the constipated Oldcat Oscar-Tyrone. I mix pumpkin with his food. It helps him much with his issues.

I can't say that I am a fan of pumpkin, though. I know during this season that pumpkin pie is popular. We never had it during this time while I was growing up.

We had sweet potato pie.

But I am always amazed at the various winter vegetables available during this time of year. Like these:

Not sure what these are. I think they are gourds. I am not sure what you do with them. For decoration or cooking. Not sure. I'm not big on decorating, and I like summer squash and zuchinni also.

But back to the pumpkin, which is in the same crop group as squash. I came across a batch of pumpkins while perusing the local Whole Foods store.

I was... perplexed, to say the least. What's up with the bumpy pumpkins?

I have a hard time wrapping my mind around buying a whole pumpkin, but one that is all bumpy. Not sure about that.

Of course these are heirloom, special varieties. I see the hierloom tomatoes all the time. They come in strange colors and are shaped funny.

I'm wondering who was the first farmer to see a bumpy pumpkin and ate some of it. I would've thought it was diseased or something.

I won't be having any. I'll let ya'll pumpkin eaters go and try it out, because it looks like something for the true pumpkin eaters.

Let me know how they are!


Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Food For Thought: The Fourth Dimension

I was reading a physics book earlier this year (The Elegant Universe by Brian Greene), and it was really interesting. Let's just say I understood many spiritual things through reading a book like that. I thought that was odd, because I feel like I am one of the few people who can extract spiritual truths from scientific material.

But I was reading another book this year (Unexplained Mysteries of Heaven and Earth by Ron Phillips), and the author actually referenced the book above. He was discussing a chapter on angels, and he mentioned that there were not just 3 dimensions to the universe, but that there are 11.

11 dimensions. I remember reading about that in the physics book. And it was a lot to wrap my mind around. I have to go back and read it again, actually. Just to let it soak in.

11 dimensions. There are dimensions we don't notice, that run perpendicular, parallell, and fold in on each other. There's much going on that we simply can't see.

So I know the 3 dimensions all too well: length, width, height.

So that means there are 8 other dimensions that we can't see or we just don't pay attention to.

It gives the bible verse 2 Corinthians 5:7 "We walk by faith, not by sight" some serious ground to stand on. Serious.

Hmm... I suppose there is still some argument in the scientific community over that. If all the theories are true, then... hmm...

It makes perfect sense spiritually. Perfect. But it doesn't make much sense to this sensual and logical mind of mine. Human beings are quite carnal, living by our 5 senses- taste, touch, smell, hearing and sight.

I am, however, interested in the 4th dimension.

Ah yes... the 4th dimension.

And what is the 4th dimenstion?


Time, time, time.

Time is the 4th dimension.

It is also a song by Culture Club.

I loved that song when I was... 13.

"Time won't give me time... And time makes lovers feel... like they got something real... but you and me we know we got nothing but time! And time won't give me tiiiiiime! Won't give me tiiiiiiiiime!"

"Tiiiiiiime! Tiiiiiime! Tiiiiiiime!"

I'm sorry. I just had to stand up and pop my fangers and sang for a second.

And you know what? I have NO idea what Boy George and the crew were talking about. No idea whatsover.

But you know what? Over the years, I have learned a few things about TIME.

TIME is a close cousin to revelation. They walk hand in hand, skipping through the high and low places of our lives.

Revelation comes with the passage of TIME.

Many things are revealed with the passage of time.

And here's my list of those things. It is a bit wordy. May be even convoluted. It is by no means exhaustive, though. After you read it, you could probably add to it. This is just from my personal experiences.

Time will reveal flaws in the most well-thought out plans. I know I have made plans over the years, and some of those plans have worked out, and some have failed. I have discovered the failure or success depends on what goes on over time, in the midst of working those plans. Unless I pay strict attention to the sticky areas and flaws, and fix them, then I will fail. A chain is only strong as its weakest links. Same for plans and goals. I am in the midst of thinking about that right now when it comes to some things I've been hoping to do over the past year. Much time has passed and I am stuck in the same place as I was in the beginning of the year. If I look over the past year, I can find the weak links that have caused me not to progess.

Time let's me know whether an answer to a prayer is real or not.  I get a LOT of answered prayer. I mean a ton. And you know, that's the way it's suppose to be. Sometimes I know immediately if it's the right thing, and sometimes I just have to write it down and go back to it. Sometimes that answer requires action. In all cases, in time, I know if it was an answer or not.

I love when some of the older, more seasoned women of the church have a chance to preach sermons. It makes for some interesting stories on The Color Purple level indeed. One said something last year that I will never forget. She said if we are praying about things, and we think we have an answer but are not sure, then sit it (the answer) on the shelf. In time, we will know what to do with it.

If I don't remember anything else. I will remember that.

Time reveals hidden agendas. I think about agendas. I know I spend time thinking about my own. But I think that we are more concerned with other people's agendas. People have commented that I pick up on this very well.  Much of that comes from watching how people deal with people around them. And over time, people have interesting patterns. We may not know much on day 1 of dealing with people, but on day 365, we know a lot. The difference it that much time has passed.

Time reveals the strengths and weaknesses in our character. This is pretty much self explanatory and loosely related to time revealing flaws in our plans. I am very much aware of my own strengths and weaknesses because I've spent some 43 years with myself. But I don't know much about YOUR character upon first meeting you. But over time, I learn much about your character, and it determines if I should deal with you or not. And what I learn determines whether I mesh well with you or not.

People say I am a very good judge of character. It's not that. I know my own character and personality well, and there are just people I can't deal with well over long periods of time. I know I don't deal well with gossipers, complainers, negativity, and emotional abuse. And I consider those behaviors as things that clash with my character, or traits I am trying to remove from my character. And again, the more time that passes, the more I see and understand this about myself and people.

Time reveals motives.  Motives, motives, motives. You know how I feel about motives. I have written a few posts on it (See "The Mysterious Motive Machine"). This again is closely related to my thoughts about hidden agendas above.

I spend a lot of time thinking about my motives. And I think because of this, I pick up on the motives of others pretty quickly. But I am more concerned about my own. Sometimes I just don't know what my motives are. But over time, it will be revealed whether they are good or bad. But that takes time.

Time reveals the quality of our friendships and relationships.   We all have experience with this.  And I think it ties many of the comments I've made in this post together very nicely. It is revealed over time whether the people we deal with are good for us or bad for us. Plain and simple.

Many years ago, I was watching someone minister about personal relationships. He said we should make a list of people in our lives. Next to each name, place a "+", a "-", a "x", or a "/".

"+" = the person adds value to my life.
"x" = the person "multiplies" me, i.e., they make me a better person, many times over.
"-" = the person subtracts from my life; the person drains me.
"/" =  the person is highly divisive.

The minister said people who subtract from your life or who are highly divisive, GET RID OF THEM.

Plain and simple.

That's a little harsh. I suppose it is. Nothing really wrong with surrounding ourselves with people who drain us or people who are highly divisive. (Just writing that doesn't even seem right).

But think about the time implications here.

What is the of surrounding ourselves with people who have a "-" or "/" next to their name...

For 1 day?
For 1 week?
For 1 month?
For 1 year?
For 10 years?
For 20 years?

Hmm... When I look at it that way, over a span of time, it all makes sense.   Time makes a difference.

What in the world happens to my quality of life when surround myself with divisive and draining people... over a span of 20 years? Conversely, what happens when I have people who add to my quality of life or who are a blessing to my life... over a span of 20 years?

And I am bad about it. It don't take 20 years to figure out if you are a detriment or an asset. Lord knows I don't deal with people who drain me. And that divisiveness melts over into the area of hidden agendas and bad motives. No ma'am. No sir. I don't deal with that. And I don't care if you don't like it. I told someone the other day, there are certain people that I don't want to like me. Yes there are. On purpose.

It doesn't even take 20 years. A person can show up and blow your emotional house sky high in no time. Conversely, someone can show up and build your emotional house up. I'd rather have the latter. I'd rather be the latter.

I want to be that person that you can put a "+" or "x" next to my name. I want to be that to anyone I interact with, whether short term or long term. I want to be an asset, not a detriment.

All I know, the more time that passes, the more we recognize things about people.

More importantly, the more time that passes, the more we recognize things about ourselves.

As you can see, I think much about Time, the 4th dimension. It's really important in the area of physics, and it meant much to read about it in that regard.

But I am much more interested in time on an emotional, mental, and spiritual basis.

"Tiiiime! Tiiiiime! Tiiiiiiiiimmme!!!" *LadyLee singing hard like boy George*

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Clear Liquor (Sip)

I drank my liquor
My favorite sweet clear liquor
From a frosted jar chilled for hours in my freezer
My freezer that has been cooled low
Cooled low to its coldest setting

Because I like it like that
And when I gently removed my jar from the freezer,
I see the white smoke swirling softly
Swirling oh so softly from the jar
As I touch it first to my cheek
And then to yours.
As I touch it first to my lips
And then to yours.

I enjoy sharing my liquor
My favorite sweet clear liquor
With you
Because my liquor
That good good liquor
Was something of my own
It was, and has always been,
My secret addiction
And I shared it with no one.

Now I share it with you,
And now my secret addiction is you
And the smile on your face
As you sip with me
As you sip me
And as I sip you
While the white smoke swirls
A soft fog swirling between you and I
Between me and you
A love supreme
Warmed to its warmest setting
By the love we make.

From Women of Color Writing Workshop, 11/22/13. 7 minute writing prompt.

The writing prompt was a visual one. The Facilitator Dawn passed 4 interesting bottles around the room.

Here's a closeup.

The prompt involved creating a piece with one of the bottles or up to all four if we wanted.

I was immediately drawn to the frosted bottle. When I think of frosted glass, I think of the old frosted glasses my mother kept in the freezer back in the 70s. She said it kept whatever she drank really cold.

And I believed her because I could see the "smoke" come off of them when she sat them on the table, and when she poured whatever she was drinking (most likely Cold Duck), into them.

And I remembered thinking... That's really cold. 

The ladies were a bit taken aback by my piece, as it's not in my usual style or voice.

It lingers on the edge of erotic... just on the edge.  That is as far as it will go. You know how I whine about not liking erotica. Your friendly neighborhood Oldgirl has swang from chandalier to kitchen counter to chandalier. Can't say I care to read about it.

Serenity read this last week and she wanted to know what type of liquor the woman and her lover were drinking. I had my thoughts, but I wanted to know what she thought, since she's my resident wine and liquor expert.

She mentioned Reisling. I was thinking along the lines of Moonshine. Serenity didn't say anything. She knows her big blog sista is a bit bootleg and ghetto. I don't even know what Reisling is.

Moonshine sounds more along the lines of "secret" liquor, liquor you don't wanna share with folks.

And this woman chooses here to share it with the one she loves.


Thanks for reading!

Monday, December 16, 2013

Mount Ranier at Sunset

My brother Milk and Cookies, who's stationed in Seattle, steps out of of his front door every morning and is greeted by the nearby volcano, Mount Ranier.

He sent a picture of a beautiful sunrise the other day.

If that's not a thing of beauty, I don't know what is.

Sunday, December 15, 2013

Simply Sunday

I forgot that I said was posting everday. Even on Sunday.   Sigh.

My laptop overheated so I am posting from my phone.  Shame on me for not pulling out my netbook.  But I have no idea where my cord is.

This was a pretty good day in that it was simple.   I like simple. I have all these grandiose ideas about how much I will get done on the weekends, but simple is fine.

I am sitting here watching Survivor.  I didn't even know this show was still on.  It is the final episode, so everyone looks gaunt and malnourished.  It is interesting. There is a brother in the final three. I am watching to see if he wins. I don't remember any black folk winning before.

I woke up around 5 this morning, so I spent some time listening to my church's finance conference from the past week.  A lot of interesting information. But I really need to listen to it again to get a full understanding. Concentration is not stellar at 5 a.m.

I am not really looking forward to the work week. I am wondering what kind of tomfoolery will go on this week. However things go, my goal is to work no more than 8 hours a day. I get frustrated otherwise. And my goal is to manage my time much better.  That is doable.

There are only 2 weeks left in the year.  Around this time I wax nostalgic about the year.  If I can find the time, I really want to do some food for thought posta on some of the important happenings in my life.  I need to go look back in my journals and at old posts to see what I can post on.

And I best be quick about it since there are only 2 weeks left in the year.

The brother didn't win. Sigh. Maybe next time.

Saturday, December 14, 2013

Saturday 7... The Oscar-Tyrone Edition

1. It rained this morning. And it is nice when it rains on a Saturday Morning. But it wasn't nice that I had to get out in the rain. It wasn't very cold and there wasn't very much traffic. So that was a good thing.

2. Why did I get out in the rain at 8:45 this morning? To take Oscar-Tyrone to the vet out on the Eaaaastsiiiiide. He had a 9:20 appointment.

3. It was a good drive, since virtually no one was out.

4. I may have been in the car at 8:45, but I didn't leave until 8:57. Why? Couldn't find my cell phone. I finally saw that it had fell out of my purse and was laying on the backseat. Sigh.

5. I bought Oscar a new carrier, which was much to small for him. He screamed and hollered all the way to the vet office.

6, He was shellshocked into silence when we walked into the vet office. Maybe he remembers the place. Not one yell, not one meow. Even when the vet assistant took him back somewhere for his bloodwork. Quiet as a mouse, he was.

7. Did I mentioned he was shell shocked? This is what shell shocked looks like:

Every time he heard a dog bark he was O_O.

Yes, he was a basket case.

Bonus:  He seems to be doing okay. He is a tad bit dehydrated. The bloodwork and urine, which is part of the annual exam, will tell much. He has maintained his weight pretty much over the last year, only losing 0.3 pounds. I told the vet he had some constipation issues, and that I have to mix beans, peas, and pumpkin with his food and plenty of water for him to eat. She said that he is having issues that most older cats have (he is 16).

So hopefully the Oldcat will be okay. If he needs more extensive help, I'm not going to be able to do it. It is much too expensive. He is running around playful and eating well. And that is a good thing.

Friday, December 13, 2013

Friday Freestyles



It's Friiiiiiiday!!


The only thing that would make it better is if it was a Payday. It is not. Sigh.

As you can tell I am quite glad about today. Why? Because I've been working like a Hebrew slave. So I am happy for a break. I wouldn't be surprised if I have to work on Saturday. But I will not if I can help it. I worked 11 hours on Wednesday. Just for that, they won't be seeing me on the Weekend.

It is bone chilling COLD in my beloved ATL. At least it has been sunny for the past couple of days. Earlier in the week it was cold and rainy. That ain't cute at all. That is too much going on. I must say, even though it is cold, I am enjoying the sunshine.

We had our group Christmas party this week. Only half of the group participated, since it was $20 a person. I've been picking on Cowgirl Cre, telling her "You weren't suppose to go. You missed the memo!"

Christmas party season at work is always totally wack. I refuse to participate in anything in my area because it is so "clique-driven". Certain people aren't allowed to participate in potlucks because they are considered nasty, etc... silly stuff like that. If you think that about a person, then don't eat what they cook.  Just a bunch of mess, man. I barely talk to folks in the first place. No way I'm getting caught up in a bunch of mess. And what's sad is that the "non-clique" or unliked folks know that it is a bunch of mess. Sad to talk to folks about that. It is bad when people's feelings get hurt. Oh well.

But the $20 was considered too much to pay. Interestingly, everybody got at least 2 or 3 meals out of it (I had a big foiled-wrapped leftover plate for lunch today). So I figured I spend eight to ten dollars if I go to lunch anyway. Might as well spend it on some good soul food.

It was a decent event once everybody warmed up. It was interesting to see management dance. I took a picture and was scolded about putting it up on my blog. I told them I wouldn't do that. And I won't.

But I will put up a pic of the food. I didn't get good pics, as I thought about it after the fact. But it was all good: turkey, chicken, cornbread dressing, yams, collard greens, green beans cornbread, and rolls and sweet tea and lemonade.

There was even a DJ. He had a strobe light thing going on.

I tell you, your friendly neighborhood Oldgirl had the ITIS.  I was ready for a nap. If I could've gone back in the lab and made myself a pallet on the floor I sure would have.  And I would've slept well.

So that was the excitement for the week. I had a good time. A break from work indeed.

Anyway, that is it for the week.  I am all tuckered out. Gonna make the best of this Friday so I can relax this weekend. Oscar-Tyrone has a doctor's appointment on Saturday morning, and that is about as exciting as it is going to get. Hopefully his vet will give me something to help with his constipation issues. I am not all that excited about getting up and pureeing peas, beans or pumpkin to mix in with his food. I need this lil' ol' man to go back on dry food!

But that's it. I need a Song of the Week. How about a two-for-one special:

An old Gap Band remake, "I'm in Love" by Mary J. Blige

"Beautiful" by Mary J Blige

Alright now. You have a good weekend. On purpose!

Thursday, December 12, 2013

Virtual Travels

As you know, I live vicariously through my favorite author Tayari Jones' travels.

Last month she was in France.

This month she was in Wyoming.


Now, how one goes from the beauty of France to the... beauty of Wyoming is beyond me.

And you know how crass I am...

I said "Whatchu doing up there, Celie? Ain't no black people in Wyoming!"

LOL.  I am sure there are some black folks up in Wyoming.  Not as many as it is in Georgia, though.

Anyway, she sends me a few pictures from time to time.

And of course, here are some from the great state of Wyoming!

I thought that picture was fake. That look like something off a sci-fi movie. We had a few words back and forth about it.

Here's another picture.

That is interesting. I don't remember ever seeing that array of sky colors before. Very nice.

And then there's this picture:

I don't like that picture. It looks like the start of a movie trailer...

"In a world, cold and desolate... only one woman can save the people."

Ugh, nope! Won't be going to Wyoming anytime soon! Nope!

I am still stuck on her best picture from France, from the French Riviera:

Yeah babes!  That scene right there looks better than "a desolate land".

Really though. I love that picture so much that it's my screen saver!

Thanks for the pictures, T! You know I love them all.

I STILL think you need to stop globetrotting and bring you tail on home to SWATS (Southwest Atlanta).

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

An "Exact" Smoothie

An Anonymous commentor asked for exact measurements for one of my smoothies...


I didn't know how to go about that. I don't measure. Usually it is a handful of this, a wedge of that, and a few of that.

So I had to think about how to do that.

She (or he) wanted to know how to make a spinach pineapple blueberry smoothie, one I mentioned last week I think. She (or he) is having trouble with making good smoothie or juices.

So the best way for me to do that was to just take whatever I usually use and throw it on a plate.

There you go! Isn't that beautiful.

That plate contains a heaping handful of organic spinach, as much as I can grab.  There's also a small handful of blueberries, and a pineapple ring.

Then I chopped down my spinach and pineapple so I could fit them in measuring cups.

So the measurements come out to:

1.5 cups of spinach
1 cup of pineapple
1/4 cup blueberries.
1/2 cup of apple juice (juiced apples)

I suppose you can use 1/2 cup of water and some crushed ice. I just happened to juice a bunch of apples the other day. (I'd bought a bag of new ones, and wanted to get rid of the several left over from a couple of weeks ago).

I've also used orange juice. Many of my smoothies or juices come from just throwing open the refrigerator doors and seeing what is around.

Anyway, blogger Bliss and Ginae turned me on the Magic Bullet blender.

I threw all of that into the Magic Bullet. Here's how that looks:

I let that blend for 15 seconds.
And I poured it into my solo cup.
And I had a good smoothie.

My solo cups are 20 ounces, so I think this was a 16 ounce smoothie. Since I have a little more fruit than usual, I could probably get away with adding 2 cups of spinach.

The commentor said that their own juices were not tasty. I hope you are not like my sister, honey. She has always liked a lot of sodas and store bought juices, which are loaded down with sugar and other strange things. So these homemade smoothies and juices do take a little getting accustomed to.

My advice is that if you don't like the green leafy component of your drink, change it. My sister was trying to deal with kale, but kale is a bit out there. Even I am borderline with kale.  I mean, I will drink juiced kale, but I ain't really going to enjoy it. I juice it if there is absolutely nothing else to juice. And she was O_O about the kale.  So I took her to the farmer's market and pointed out a few things she may want to try: romaine lettuce or swiss chard or spinach.  Bok choy is also really good. I like all four of those choices. She prefers the romaine lettuce.

This was a good smoothie. I'm not a big fan of blueberies, but I know they are pretty good for me. So I mix them into a smoothie, or I will throw a handful on my salad.

I like pineapple because it has a good antiinflammatory natural product that is very good for my lupus. So it helps with my joint issues. I can tell the difference.

So Anonymous one, I hope that was what you meant by "exact" measurements.

Thanks for coming out of Lurk City and leaving a comment! 

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Unexpected Surprises

I arrived at work one morning last week and I found a gift sitting on my desk.

Oh my!

I was surprised. I never expect anything from anyone, especially during the holidays. This comes with not being apart of any of the workplace cliques (on purpose) and what-not. So I usually watch the festivities going on around me and not think much of it. I don't have any sense of entitlement or whatever. It's all good.

But this green tissue paper wrapped gift sitting on my desk that morning meant something. It was totally unexpected. It was such a surprise that someone thought of me.  I was truly thankful. Heck, I didn't even want to open it.

And this gift came from Lady S, the same coworker who breaks out the "interesting" decorations for Halloween. (I always say I'm going to put a bible scripture on her desk during these times, lol).

She also gets a bit festive during Christmas.  Her desk is decorated with a plethora of wrapped gifts. I have even been taking candy over there at times to spread in with her decoration candy.

And yes, that is my gift on her desk there. I wanted to take a picture of it among her decorations.

It was a bottle of Voss Water. Good clean Norwegian water in glass.

A week prior, she heard me talking about how good water in glass tastes.  They were looking at me crazy when I was talking about it. But water from a glass bottle tastes MUCH cleaner than water from a plastic bottle. MUCH.

So she said when she saw that bottle of Voss, she thought of me.

And Voss happens to be my favorite brand of glass bottled water. I rarely buy it, as it is difficult to find it in glass (and it is a bit expensive).

"This is Voss," I said to Lady S' cubicle mate, Supersonic Sushi. "It is from the top of the world, from Norway. Good CLEAN water."

Supersonic Sushi said nothing. She just peered at me curiously.

So I appreciated the gift. I haven't opened it. We are going to share it, so I can prove to them that water in glass is the best water of all.

I wonder if they will agree?

It doesn't matter. I am just thankful for the gift, and being able to share it.

Monday, December 09, 2013

Grandma's Flowers

It's so cold and dreary outside. I need a fresh jolt of something that reminds me of springtime.

What better than my Grandma's flowers...

I feel better already.