Thursday, July 31, 2014

Food for Thought: Anger Danger

I heard something strange from a guest minister in a sermon a couple of weeks ago at church.

"It's not what people do to you that makes you angry, it's what's already on the inside of you that makes you angry."

Say whuuuut?

That had me a looking a little...

Now that didn't make much sense. I made sure to write it in my church notes so that I could ponder it later.

And after some thought, I could understand that statement a little better. I could view it through the lens of a quote I have posted a few times on my blog:

"Anger is an expression of fear."

That too at the time didn't make much sense to me. But after much thought, I must say that it has helped me immensely. When I am angry, I don't focus too much on who or what has made me angry. I always ask myself question "What am I afraid of?"

I spend much time with that question. I make sure to locate my fear, and try to face it. Fear is the root of my anger. If I kill the root, I kill the anger.

And then one of my favorite chickens Serenity_23, sent me one of her morning devotionals from Rick Warren, from a devotional entitled "Do You Need a Heart Transplant".  There was a good quote on anger included, that gave MUCH insight into the first quote above.

"If you build your identity on anything that can be taken away from you, you're going to become insecure, and insecurity is at the root of your anger.  Until you start feeling secure about yourself, people are going to be able to push your buttons. When you know who you are and whose you are, people can't push your buttons.   They can't get to you. Anger and insecurity go together. The more insecure you feel, the angrier you feel. The Bible says in Proverbs 29:25 (MSG),  "The fear of human opinion disables; trusting in God protects you from that."

When you are angry, your mouth just reveals what's inside your heart. A harsh tongue reveals an angry heart. A negative tongue reveals a fearful heart. A boasting tongue reveals an insecure heart. An overactive tongue reveals a guilty heart. A judgmental tongue reveals a guilty tongue. A critical tongue reveals a bitter heart. A filthy tongue reveals an impure heart."

My oh my. That is one heckuva quote. You mean to tell me that I can listen to the what people say- I can listen to what I say- and tell what's going on in a person's heart?

Yes I can. There is a bible verse that addresses that, Matthew 12:34... "for out of the abundance of the heart, the mouth speaks."


That long quote does give some insight into anger. And it points straight back at that first quote of this post.

So the root of anger is internal.

Yes it is. I can vouch for that. This is why I do much internal work, because Lord knows I have my issues. Sigh.

I almost blew that first quote off. I am glad I didn't. I have had anger management problems in the past, and I still work on that. This just gives me more insight into what's going on.

Food For Thought: Much Needed Conversations, Part I

Once July of each year rolls around, I like to think back on significant things that happened during the previous 6 months.  And most of my memorable times involve conversations. And I have a lot of them, to the point where I don't really care for idle conversations anymore. I have come to expect conversations that increase me in some way. And I think that's a good thing.

Right now, I am thinking about my health concerns. No, nothing dire is wrong, but with the lupus, I tend to have some flare-ups here and there, and some of it is cognitive. I don't like the "suprise" nature of that. And when it happens, I can't sit and be still. I still have to keep going. I have to work, do my chores, etc. And that can get hard.

And it can be very lonely?

Why do I say that? Because I can look perfectly fine, but feel pretty horrible. And I rarely share that with anyone. Because people don't understand. They assume I am just being mean or something. No I am not. I feel bad. And I just want to be quiet. That can be lonely. I need someone to talk to about things. Someone who understands.

So when earlier this year I had a new symptom, it bothered me. It seems that I don't do well with physical stresses like changes in my routine. I don't know how to explain it, but I can't say I remember feeling like that before. It started when our roof at work was being replaced, and I had to shift my schedule around and get to work earlier. And then it continued with other stark changes in my routine.

I thought "This is stupid. Why am I feeling bad?"  That was the only change that I could think of.

The best thing I can do in these situations is power through it. And pray about it. Pray for some answers or insight.

And that's what happened.

Maybe a year or so ago, I met a woman who had my exact same symptom patterns. We met last year when I was getting iron infusions. I never sat next to her in the chemotherapy, as the lounge chair next to hers or mines were always occupied, but we would have some good conversations when either one of us was coming or going. I found her to be amazing. And she's a good resource since she's exactly 20 years older than me. I tend to question her hard when I see her.

So we happen to have the same doctor, and she always goes in on a Tuesday, and I on a Monday. So there was no way we could really catch up with each other. But I ran into her on my last visit. She was about to go out of town to spend a few weeks with her mother, and she needed to come in on a Monday. And she and I both understand if we are about to leave town, get that doctor's appointment in.  We better get ALL our meds in order. Nothing like being caught out of town without one of your meds.

So when I saw her, my eyes lit up. And it meant much to me because I'd been praying about everything that morning, and trying to write some things down to talk to my doctor about. It was a good thing to run into her.

She does give good insight on medications.

"I took this one med called [something that starts with an M], and it threw me into kidney failure," she said.

"Whoa," I said, as I remembered to not take this med I couldn't pronounce, and as I made a mental note to not take anything that starts with an "M".

I talked to her about the problems coming from changes in my schedule. I'd never experienced that before, and if I did, it wasn't as drastic as it was this spring. That was enough to concern me.  I didn't know if I was imagining things or not.

She said that I wasn't. She doesn't have many problems with physical stress, but she has had problems moreso with emotional stress. I told her I don't have too much of that, as I try not to be dramatic and I stay out of the way of dramatic people and situations as best I can. It's this coping with physical change that has thrown me for a loop. She gave some good insight and tips on that.

We had a chance to talk about her life. She was the creative type, and had directed plays and liked to write. She even tried out for a soap opera. She ended up having to retire because of complications from the illness. She has a son who is a scientist, and thought since I am one also, that that may be part of my issue. Scientific types tend not to be the best communicators. I told her that I wasn't, and I have a tendency to be aloof. That was good to talk about.

She found it interesting that I still work. I told her that I was still strong and that I could. I don't have a physically demanding job, and I have found it HIGHLY beneficial to stay away from folks on the job who have a tendency to exasperate me. I have to do better about taking off when I don't feel well, but I chooset to save up my sick leave just in case I fall sick and absolutely cannot work for an extended period of time. So we talked much about that.

I really appreciated this talk. It was super brief, at less than half hour, but the insight I gained into my own self was much needed. And I understood my challenges and some of the changes I need to make.

And I love when I get a quick turnaround on my prayers. I was praying for some answers to my questions concerning it all, and in less than 2 hours, I had my answers and a plan of action.

So that is a more personal food for thought, just for me. Life unfolds for me in good conversations, and this was definitely a much needed one.

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

LadyLee's Favorite Soup

This here is for That Southern Black Gal, who said that this particular soup sounded like it wouldn't be good.

This is some GREAT soup. $6.99 for a quart at the Whole Foods.

I can get 3 servings out of it if I have it as a side. If it's all I have, I will eat it ALL. I have the borderline 'itis after eating a whole bowl, thought. That's not good when at work. *ladylee snoring in cubicle chair*

It has more than collard greens and black eye peas. It has some soy meat crumbles, and it is tomato based. I have tried to make it before, but it didn't work out as well as I liked. So I buy it from time to time. And only one Whole Foods in the area carries it. I guess it's not popular up in the more northern suburbs. (I personally think it is something the black folk back in the kitchen came up with.).

This here is some good soup, Southern Black Gal. Real good!

Monday, July 28, 2014

Good Monday Morning

Happy Monday Morning.

I am feeling O_o today.

I REALLY need a couple of weeks off. Really.

But alas, thank you Lord that I have a job to go to. So I will NOT complain.

I had a pretty good weekend. I am a bit tired because I did too much yesterday. My grass is 6 inches high because of all the rain and my inability to get out there due to my knee being all jacked up. It is better now (GLORY!), and you should have seen me yesterday. It was a serious adventure movie titled LadyLee versus the Forest. Part I was yesterday, and part II is today. I managed to get a lot done, but the trimmer battery runs out fast. So I should finish cutting grass today. I only have a 10'  x 5' patch left.

My best day was Saturday, though. I attended my cousin's baby shower. Oh yes, I did finish that blanket on time. I finished it on Friday night. I was so sleepy that I was cross-eyed, lol. But I finished it. I ended up washing it on Saturday morning and it came out really nice.

I love little girl blankets because I like doing ruffles. And I put one on this one.

I had a good time at the baby shower. My cousin Nicki is such a diva.

I haven't seen her since our grandfather's funeral, which was some 12 or 13 years ago. She and my little brother are the same age (I think she is 6 months older than him), and they have always been thick as thieves growing up. He keeps up with her now, and I saw her on his facebook page and we've been chatting back and forth. She is posing there with her best friend's daughter, and I tend to still think of her as THAT age (around 6 or 7), and not age 27.

So it was good to see them. Her father is my mother's youngest brother. He has MS and wasn't at the shower. But I have taking my grandmother to see him at the rehab center he's in over the past year. And one of my major goals was to catch up with Nicki's Mama and coordinate with her so I can take grandma to see him at home.

It was a good time.

It is day 6 of the Financial Fast. 15 days to go. I have been doing well on it. I went to Home Depot to get string for my trimmer, and since I knew I had a ton of trimming to do, I bought 3 spools. So that was a bit out of bounds, but it is hot as hell outside, and I don't want to be ripping and running back and forth to the Home Depot for string. Hopefully this string will last until the end of August.

I thought the evening one hour conference calls would be a bit too much, but they are much needed and cathartic. They are providing a ton of insight. We all have different ideas about financial matters and I am the type who has learned to learn from and appreciate different points of view. I feel help me understand or even add to my own point of view. And as a result I can make better goals.

So thanks ladies (and gentleman) of the Triple F Posse. It is quite the enlightening experience.

Song of the Week. I have been listening to some old Queen Latifah, two songs in particular. "Gimme your Love" and "If you don't Know". These songs came out 22 years ago, I believe. They are off the Nature of a Sista CD.

And here is another song I like off that CD.  "How Do I Love Thee".

Now, she and I are the same age. So she was only 21 or 22 years old when she made that CD.

Now imagine the depth of a 21 year old female rapper today. You can't imagine it? No you can't. Because they have no depth. It doesn't take much depth to rap about how bad you are and how everybody is a bitch. Sigh. This Oldgirl can't listen to that.

Maybe I'm just getting older. And wiser. I am understanding more and more every year that that is a good thing.

That's it for today!

I have a TON of food-for-thought posts in my head. I will try to get them out. That was last week's goal, but I didn't get much of anything done. Food for thought tends to drain me a bit, and I have been cranking hard on that crochet project. I am done now. Maybe I will have time to get all that I am thinking about out in a few posts. Some of that stuff... I may have to turn off the comments. Uh... maybe I will just keep those to myself.

So for now, keep commenting. Sweepstakes is still in full effect until August 13th. Whether you comment once or multiple times, just comment. Just don't miss your chance at those $99 gift cards, honey!

Get your money, honey! Git it!

On purpose!!!

Friday, July 25, 2014

Friday Freestyles



The only thing that would make it better is if it was...


But it is not.

Alas, 7 days until pay day.

And I am thinking much about money because of this financial fast. This is day 3. I am doing just fine. I have spent no money in the past 3 days, the reason being I am trying to crank out this crocheted baby blanket for my cousin.. Yet I do have my designated cash envelopes.

Yes, they are what you call bootleg... LadyLee style. I My goal was to shop during the week with a list. I don't really need a gas envelope because both cars are on full and I fill up Lucy Jr. every three weeks, and Pam gets a fill up every 2 or 3 months, depending on how much I drive her. So I am good. That miscellaneous envelope is for Wal-Mart and other ratchetness. I will figure that out later.

And this has been an interesting couple of days. We have a teleconference in the evenings about the reading material assignments, and things got a bit intense last night. Look here, I can't be talking to you chickens every night if I am gonna be all weepy, and then angry. And then weepy again. I might just have to just be quiet. I was expecting The Green Eye Bandit to say... "Lee, calm down."

And Bandit, if I do get too keyed up... feel free to shut me down. Please and thank you.

But uh, I can't fool with ya'll if it's gonna be like that every night.

I am looking forward to the weekend. I am attending my cousin's baby shower, and I am about 3 hours from finishing up her blanket. So I will most definitely meet my deadline. 

Picture of the Week. I was driving past Grant Park, one of the neighborhoods near my downtown group of 'hoods, and I got caught behind some mounted police.

Geez... Slowed me down.

Song of the Week. "Bitter" by Chante Moore. Uh, this song contains the "N" word. So if you're offended by such, stay calm and don't listen. But I like this song... doggonit.

Sweepstakes still going on... Comment to win!

Ya'll have a great weekend!

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Happy Birthday Shai!

Happy Birthday to one of my favorite readers SHAI

Have some cake, honey!

Happy Birthday... and many many more.

The cake is so beautiful, I almost don't want to cut it.

And a special quote for you, Shai, since you like the quotes:

*ladylee stands up at birthday table and speaks*

"Do not argue with stupid people. They will only drag you down to their level and beat you with experience."

*ladylee sits down*

That's a good one. I will have to remember that one.

But the thing is, everybody's idea of "stupid" is different, isn't it?


Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Lessons in Sharing

So it seems as if Sister Callie Jo is getting big enough to take over Oscar-Tyrone's favorite sleeping spots.

So he tries to make the best of it, be the bigger man, and share. 

As you can tell from the look in his eyes, he's not particularly happy about this arrangement.

But alas, sleep is sleep.  What's the harm in sharing?

So he curls up on his half of the ottoman and goes to sleep. Callie Jo does the same.
Callie Jo is getting her beauty sleep, but she is one of those young chicks that won't sleep in one place.  She has to turn what seems like every five minutes or so. 

Then she decides to just stretch completely out.

And then she throws that leg over Oscar's back end.
All I know is that I laid on the sofa and fell asleep myself. Then something jarred me from my own beauty sleep. A BIG fight broke out between Sista Callie and Oscar. He yelled at her something awful. I wish I could interpret cat language. Whatever he said was brutal.

I guess she moved one time too many and he got sick and and tired of it all.

He kicked her off the ottoman and she went to her favorite spot: under my bed.

"You should have kicked Callie off in the first place, dude," I said.

Let me be quiet. At least the old cat was trying to share.


Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Quotable Quotes: Patience and Courage

I have another good quote. Of course, I don't know where it's from. But I found it to be something I've been thinking about for the past couple of months:

The 2 hardest things in life to deal with are:

- The patience to wait for what we want.
- The courage to deal with all we encounter along the way.

 At first glance, that doesn't seem like it would be that big of a deal, patiently waiting for what you want, and dealing with what goes on during the time it takes to get it. 

But this quote addresses a couple of my biggest problems: patience and courage. 

I think I am getting better, though, especially in my 40s. At least I am willing to admit to myself when certain hard situations scare me and render my courage a bit shaky. I wasn't so willing to admit this in my younger years. But as I get older I have learned to understand that there will be obstacles along the way in life. And for myself, those can be external or even internal in nature. I am learning that I must identify the problem and battle through it if I am going to grow.

And I have also learned that it's not the desired destination that's always important, it's the 1000 things I learn along the way that are just as important and equip me to handle that final destination. 

So I am understanding patience and courage are important... 

But what scares me is the microwave times we live in... where everything is becoming more and more instantaneous. And this instantaneous nature isn't applicable to all areas of life. Personal growth, for example, is NOT an instantaneous event. It takes patience. And Lord knows, it takes courage. 

So I think that's a good quote. It reminds me to be always mindful of my weaker areas of patience and courage. 

I hope it's helpful to you, too.

Monday, July 21, 2014

Good Monday Afternoon

Good Monday Afternoon!

Short post today. Just checking in.

(And you know how I am when it comes to short. This could be a really long post).

Anyway, this has been a pretty decent weekend. And by decent I mean that I wasn't running around looking crazy. I actually didn't go anywhere on Saturday. I like to do that from time to time. Yes, I had some errands to run, but I just needed to decompress.

Plus it was raining. Who wants to be running around in that.

One of my cousins is having a baby. She's the same age as my brother, and she and he keep in touch, but I haven't seen her in the last 15 years. She's my mama's youngest brother daughter. Her mama don't too much like our side of the family (from what I hear), and yes, I can understand that. So we don't see each other. But I saw her on my brother's facebook page a few months ago and we've been chatting back and forth.

She invited me to her baby shower, which caused me to raise an eyebrow. I wanted to ask "Did you clear that with your mama?" and "Should I keep this to myself?"  But I didn't. She told me to tell my sister, and I did. So I MIGHT go.

At any rate, I am cranking away on the baby blanket. And that's another reason why I stayed home all day Saturday. The shower is on this coming Saturday, so I'll have to do some marathon hours.

Thank goodness for roku, because I got a notion to get nosey and watch the first season of this show. 

It comes on NBC I think. Not sure. But it looked stupid, and this ain't the type of series you come into halfway through. So I didn't bother watching it. I just happen to see it listed under my Amazon Prime, so I figured I would watch.

It's about a small town that becomes inclosed under some strange dome. Nobody knows why. But you can imagine all the chaos that goes on. Plenty room for conflict here. And it's a good show. And it made for some good crochet time.

The blanket is 24"x24" right now. I am shooting for 34"x34". So I have to really CRANK this week. I am looking to try to do upwards of 3 hours in the evenings. We will see how I feel. It WILL get finished.

She is naming her baby a variation of my name. My first name and middle name, but with an "x" in place of the "s". I told her to just go ahead on change that "x" to an "s".

She was puzzled. She didn't know my first name. She always thought it was "Lisa", since that is what everybody calls me.


Oh my goodness, that was funny. I told her, she herself was supposed to be named after me, but wasn't. She has my middle name. But she does have a sister who is almost named after me. Add a "F" to the beginning of my name, and you got it!

My own sister didn't know my name until she was 4 years old. She answered the phone one day, and when someone asked for me, she told them I didn't live there. I went off on her. Our mother told her that my name was not really "Lisa".

That little girl laughed at me HARD for three days. I'm still hot about that. LOL.

It is all a reminder that I need to make sure my folks know my name!

Now, I attended church on Sunday which is incredibly odd for me. There was a speaker I wanted to see, and I must say, that was a good sermon.  It was about pride, but not the definition that we are all accustomed to, where pride is defined as arrogant and thinking you're better than others. But it was looked at from the flip side, where pride is defined as being self-centered and having an inferiority complex. I thought that was a real stretch, but it made sense. It pointed right to something that I have personally been working on for years: my own selfishness. I get the comment all the time "Lee, you're one of the most unselfish people I know." Well that's good you think of me that way. But it is only because I am constantly examining myself and making the necessary corrections. And for me, it's like peeling an onion. The more layers I remove, the more I see underneath where I can make the necessary changes.  And it was good to hear a sermon about that very thing.

So that was the gist of my weekend.
Song of the Week. We loved that Angela Winbush last week. How about some Rene and Angela, "Your Smile"?

That song is not about her man. Oh it would be lovely if it was.

It was about her grandmother.

Ain't that nice?

Good song.

Our Triple F Posse financial fast starts tomorrow, so I am spending a little time today thinking about a few goals. This also gives me a chance to do it using the 2nd edition of Michele Singletary's book The 21 day Financial Fast. I would like to know how it differs from the last edition. A couple of people are sending out a bunch of spreadsheets, so I need to print those out and look through those and see what I can use.

Fun, fun, FUN.

My sister has been hanging out with my brother and his family in Colorado for the past week. She returns tomorrow. Can't wait to see her. I miss her much. She and the oldest nephew have been having a lot of fun looking at all the pictures on my blog. Those have made for some funny convos and text messages, lol.

The Bloggaversary Sweepstakes is still in full full effect. There have been over 100 comments already. As you can see, I have been diligently recording comments, and I have more to do today.  This is like a marathon race and all the major players are in a comfortable stride. The more you comment, the better your chances of winning. The person with the most comments overall will automatically win a $99 gift card. There are a good three weeks to go.

Get your money, honey. Get on it, doggonit.

On purpose.

Friday, July 18, 2014

Friday Freestyles... The Finance Edition.

Good Friday Morning.

Or Good Friday Afternoon.

Or Good Friday evening. 

Whichever it may be, because I been working on this here post ALL day long on my breaks.

I thought I would do something a little different for our freestyle Friday. I didn't get a chance to talk about my Triple F Posse meeting, so I will do that today.

So we got together at one of the local malls in the food court and caught up on all things financial.

The whole food court thing was O_o. Folks were giving out free samples, and you know me. If it is free, it is good.

Look, what had happened was... I had some Chinese food. This is fine. But I told the man to give me some rice, the veggie medley, and a piece of that orange chicken. This dude dump a couple of spoonfuls on my plate. Sigh. Dude. That broccoli veggie stuff was GREAT. I picked around at the chicken. I took 90% of that home and fed it to Oscar and Callie.

Both of them were soon laid out with the 'itis. Especially that Sister Callie:

Look at her wedged between the arm of the sofa and my leg. She is getting her 'itis induced beauty sleep. I guess that deep-fried fructose corn syrup orange glazed coated chicken do that to a feline. And a human, too. Cuz I myself had to go lay down somewhere and get my beauty sleep. I appreciate my raw spinach much more these days.

I now know how to get them to go to sleep.That's good.

One of the things that limits us is having a good regular meeting place. I am remotely thinking about having the meetings at my house. That way I am forced to clean and sand blast my house once a month. But hell... that is just going to stress me out something awful. I just don't know. And my house is so small that if you do a Wonder Woman spin, you will knock EVERYTHING over. I have to think hard about that one. If it means having regular meetings, then I may have to suck it up and figure it out.

Back to Finances.  It was good to catch up with everybody. And since it is more of a group where I can't share what all was said, I can choose to share my own thoughts and accomplishments.

Oh but I know I can tell one thing about another member. Ms. Erica got married to Mr. T., the male member of our group. Look at that ring:

It makes me want to sing that song, holler "BLING-BLING". Everytime ya see me "Bling-Bling! Everytime I come around the corner, "BLING-BLING!!"

Congrats Erica and Mr. T.! 

We always do a round robin and talk about our financial highs and lows. I will talk about mine here.

Kentucky and I did a 21 day financial fast back in March. Our meetings had sporadic, to the point where I thought we were on hiatus.  Kentucky kept asking when the meetings were, and hell, I didn't hear from anyone. So we did the fast together (It was scheduled for march anyway).

It went well enough. I always put away some extra money during these financial fasts. It also gives me a chance to watch my patterns, and set new savings goals, which I ended up putting into effect and that is doing just fine. There's another financial fast coming up in another couple of weeks and I will participate in that one too.

Payoffs. I finally paid off last years "blood" bill. If you can remember, I had to have nine iron infusions. These were $6000 apiece before insurance. After my insurance paid, they came up to $300 a piece for me. So overall, with infusions and doctor's visits cost, that came out to roughly $3000.  I paid just fine up until that last $900 bill. I would just move money out of savings and pay as the bills came. But I decided to just pay $100 a month for that last bill, just out of being hard-headed and not wanting to pay it off. (This was definitely a high class problem).

My rheumatologist said "Your iron storage levels are normal, and you can go and get infusions if you ever need them." That ain't going down unless I am about to fall out or something. I feel the same afterwards. I told her that it was all just too pricey. Yeah, if they were $50 apiece, that would be cool. But if I am paying $300 apiece, I better have some special Wonder Woman powers behind it. I'm just saying.

I also paid off a couple small credit card bills. All in all, it freed up some $180 of money. So that money is mostly going to savings or other things I need to pay off.

Credit score. Man... my credit score on all three reports ranged from 841-846.  Now, 850 is a perfect score. I don't know HOW that happened, as I been hanging in the 790s for several years.

I thought it was because my mortgage got sold. The way it looks is like I paid it off or something. And they have a mortgage amount some $30,000 more than what I paid for my house. That is what is paid off. Not sure whether to call the peoples about that. I think I will just watch it. The account number is correct, etc. So yeah... since it's not deleterious, then whatever.

The group thought it was because I paid off some cards. Ok. I will take ya'lls word for it.

Credit Card Application. I got a special application in the mail.  Check this out.

A black card application. Ain't that special?  It made me feel special. It truly did.

I felt special until I saw that $495.

Hated it!

We discussed this in the meeting. Kentucky was looking at the brochure and thinks highly of the concierge service they offered.

"I don't need concierge service," I hollered.

And I don't. That's what blogger Serenity_23 is for. She is a bit on the bootleg, but if I need some feminine type stuff and help she will help. She will help her good tomboy friend, she will. Kentucky will too. Between those two, I am good. And there services are free.

And I don't use credit cards that much. They said that you should spend $3000 in the first 3 months to get some bonus points. That is absurd.

I did a little digging around and found out that the real black card is by American express. $7500 annual fee to start. And you have to spend $250,000 a year.  You see me with that, you know I am robbing banks, selling drugs, selling azz on the corner or something else illegal.

No thank you! How can I get financially free doing that type of tomfoolery?


So that was fun, just to imagine.

Seems like what you really want is the metal card. That's what these "black" cards are made of. So when you place it on the table and it clinks, and people can ooooh and ahhhh.  You can impress folks with it.

You know me. People can kiss my ashy kneecaps. I ain't trying to impress NO ONE. Nope.

But that was it for my update to the group. I have no big goals right now except to have a holding pattern until the end of the year. There was an interesting discussion about sinking funds, and for the next month, I may be setting up a couple of specific ones instead of having one for everything.

Additionally, by December, I will have one of my emergency credit cards paid off. And savings will be extra healthy, where I want it to be. But that's about it.

One thing that resonated with me was that someone said they had to keep things straight because they had no one to go to if they needed help financially. That struck me to my core, and I think about it from time to time. I have to immediately chase that thought away by confessing that God has never left me high and dry, impoverished, or without help, and I have no reason to have fear.

And that is that. Period. But it still comes to mind. And it is still a reminder of maintaining good stewardship over what I possess, and aiming to get better and better with that with each passing day.

Amen. *fans self with Obama church fan*

Oh, and there's new people in the group. They weren't there. But you know how I am. I get quiet around new folk.  And it's already known that if things don't shake out right, I disappear. That's it. I don't discuss nothing.  It seems that that shouldn't be a problem as these new folks are earnestly working hard on their stuff. But if I come away all stressed, I am ghost. Just habit for me. I will go so far as to call it an idiosyncrasy. There is a reason for that. And it will be discussed in a food-for-thought discussion next week. Kentucky and I had one of them convos... sigh. (You know how my conversations can go off deep like the ocean).

I was glad to get back into the folds of the group. The discussion is always great, and it is also a "safe" place to say whatever you have to say, especially if you messed up, without judgment. And that's what I like. Some are doing very well. Some are just getting along. But we all learn something from each other.  And I LOVE that, honey.

Alright, that's the recap. Sorry for the late posting. Busy as a bee today. Sigh.

I start a 30 day detail on Monday. That should be... interesting.

More about that later.

All I know, I better make it a great weekend. On purpose.

And you do the same.  

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Word Play 4... LadyLee Style

I am reading a book called Secrets of Your Cells by Sondra Barrett, PhD, and I came across this word.


Say whutttt? I thought.

That is a long word. I wrote it down. Then I came across it again, and it was written out as...


Oh. Okay.

That is an interesting word, or hyphenated word, I must say. I saw it in a chapter detailing the white blood cells and the immune system.   

I first recognized that there was much more going on in blood than I ever thought when I would get a copies of my bloodwork over the years. I always thought of blood as being red blood cells (erythrocytes), white blood cells (lymphocytes) and plasma. But each of these cell types break down into FAR more than I ever learned in school.

Let's just say I thought that 1/2 page of strange blood related words on my normal bloodwork was detailed, but when I went to a hematologist and she did 4 pages worth of bloodwork? It blew my mind. There were words on there I couldn't even pronounce, let alone remember. So many types of cells with specific jobs to do.

The monocytes-macrophages are white blood cells, and they are our first line of defense when something foreign is detected in the body. The monocyte macrophages are scavenger type cells: they don't know what the heck is going on, they just know there is trouble. They just run up on the scene immediately, and break down the foreign substance into pieces. This seems to send out a signal for more intricate white blood cells that can recognize the invader. And it goes on from there.

And it was a lot going on.

It made me think of an old post I wrote. We are indeed never stagnant. Thank goodness the immune response is involuntary and we don't have to think about it to switch it on and off. With our sway every which way feelings - funky one day, happy the next -, we would be in a whole heap of trouble.

So that's my word play word of the week.

I spent 30 minutes trying to get words from it.

Here's my list:

mono, macro, phage, gas, gap, crop, cop, pom, mop, monochrome, age, chrome, mate, mace, gates, page, cypher, came, same, name, some, morph, room, home, ghee, hope, rope, cope, acorn, corn phone, hone, goon, cam, scam, pass, ass, mass, mast, past, cast, caster, master, prom, team, seam, sage, rage, corn, money, horny, horn, coma, comatose, morose, rose, year, tear, peat, meat, meet, seet, hoop, coop, cooper, stoop, heap, seep, steep, caste, preset, present, resent, trap, pore, cross, crass, hast, haste, paste, omen, someone, common, commoner, camp, camper, amp, honor, psyche, coon, noose, moose, porch, roach, encroach, reproach, couch, coast, post, cypher, gap, gape, hyper, coot, tome, mote, photo, photon, proton, grasp, raspy, cyst, hammer, stammer, gassy, corporate, tea, sea, storm, stormy, most, mocha, proctor, grope, grape, crepe, ghost, moot, stop, pot, step, stem, steam, sham, shame, hamper, chomp, champ, pester, scram.

Whew. That was hard. I really needed an "i" and an "L". 

Right at 150 words. That's good. My goal is 100. Someday I will make 200. 

Kitty Funnies

Here's a funny video:

Things Cats do that'd be Creepy if You did them. 

Ha ha ha!

That is hilarious!

And that is Oscar-Tyrone all day long, especially the "making room" and the "meeting new people".

If you've ever met Oscar-Tyrone, you will understand the "meeting new people" all too well.

Here's another:

Too funny!

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Workplace Funnies: "This Candy"

So... I'd been wailing all last week at the workplace, much to my boss' dismay.  And I hollered whenever she was within ear shot. Especially when she got the notion to leave her office and wonder all about the lab.  And when I was in my cubicle, I'd stand up and crane my neck to see if her office door was open.

If it was, I would scurry over there if her door was open, and slide into the chair in front of her desk.

"My knee hurt! I fell and my knee hurt! You need to let me go home. I need to be sitting on the couch in my panties with my feet up, sipping fresh cool lemonade and watching Judge Judy and Dr. Phil!"

*ladylee wails hard*

*ladylee jumps up and walks like Frankenstein*

*boss kicks the hard eye roll*

She kicked me out of her office, and sent me over to the Director's office.

I leaned against the doorjamb of the Director's office. (And she peered at me curiously because she know I don't fool with management. She knew I was coming with some ol' bull...)

"Hey listen. I fell last weekend. Hook me up with some of that administrative leave. I feel okay, I suppose as I am at 99%, but I think I can be 100% if I can just lay down at home. Please help me."

She stared at me, her lips pursed. "How about you use your sick leave."

I wasn't down with that. I have 800 hours of sick leave. "Okay, well listen. Give me some of that family leave."

(I have asked for family leave to deal with that Oldcat Oscar. That didn't go over too well.)

"That comes out your sick leave."

I decided I didn't feel like talking to her anymore.

Let's just say my wails fell on deaf ears. And I have been forced to continue working.

So around lunchtime last Thursday, I wanted to sit down and have my salad. I also had a little soup. It is collard green and black eye pea soup from the Whole Foods and it is quite tasty. Somebody grand mama must work off up in the kitchen. Yes it is. It's so good that you eat something like that out of real bowl. With a real spoon.

That's what I planned to do.

We keep all of our snacks and real bowls and cups up in my cubicle mate The Cowgirl Cre's overhead cabinet.  I opened the cabinet to get a bowl and I saw this, something that wasn't there the day before:

I looked down at Cre, who was busily typing something on her computer.

I looked back up at the candy.

I turned and looked at the two calendars hanging on the wall of my cubicle to make sure it was July.

I looked back at the candy.

"What in the world?" I whispered.

"Princess Di brought that when you were out," Cre said.

I touched the bags. "Why on earth would anyone bring Christmas candy in July?"

Cre shrugged. "I don't know. All I know she brought it in."

"But this is July, and-"

I stopped mid-sentence. I grabbed the candy tightly in my hand and shook it Cre's direction.

"Praise Jesus," I whispered. "Praise him. I am thankful for this candy, this Christmas candy."

Cre laughed.

"Praised the Lawd for the candy."

I was serious.  You know how I feel about seed. Princess Di had sown some good seed.  I am working on being thankful. I have a food-for-thought coming up on that.

I snatched the bowl and threw the candy back up there and closed the cabinet.

Princess Di sits in my cubicle area behind me. She is a metals expert. You know me, I have brought in stuff and said to her "Look at this! You think this here got some lead in it?"  She has held it in her hand and peered at it curiously and we converse about it. And on top of that scientific talk, she brings in candy for my candy dish from time to time. She likes butterscotch, so I bring that in so she could have what she likes in the candy bowl too.

I walked over and put my hand around her shoulder and whispered "Did you steal that candy out the 90% off cart at the grocery store."

I laughed and walked off to go heat up my soup in the microwave.

But not before she said "No, I got it out of the 50% off cart."

We all laughed.

(Okay you had to be there to find it funny. But it was all hilarious to us).

So I will gladly throw this candy into the bowl, even though it's July.

I am thankful for this christmas candy. 

I rarely eat candy from there, as I bring it as a courtesy for everyone who stops by, but...

I will disturb the cubicle area something awful when I eat a piece, or even when I look over into the bowl.

I'm dreaming of a... whiiiiiiite Chrissssssstmassssss!"

(And you know I will do it, too. I will sang my heart out.)

LadyLee's Nephews- Little Milk and Cookies


I haven't posted pictures of my nephews in awhile. I have never met the younger one, and I have only met the oldest one once, at his 1st birthday party. My sister decided to go on vacation, and she is out there for a week. That should be fun, them meeting their auntie for the first time!

Here are some current pictures.

Milk and Cookies Jr. and Milk and Cookies 3.0 had their own little business: selling cups of water for a nickel a piece. 

They do look like little businessmen, don't they?
I heard the little one said "It's hot out here. Time to close the business."


And here is Milk and Cookies, Jr on his recreational vehicle..
He reminds me so much of my brother when he was that age back in 1993.

Oh how fast they grow. Sigh. I hope to get out there to see them soon.

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Quotable Quotes: "And..."

And here we go again with another quote I have written on a piece of paper.

And I'd been carrying it around in my purse so I wouldn't forget about it. Then I lost it. Then I found it again. So right now, I place these quotes written on random pieces of scrap paper under my computer keyboard.

And I ponder them as the day goes on.

And yet again, here's a good one.

"As you mature, you will find out that you can't change others. You only have the power to change yourself."

And that resonated with me, enough to write it down.

And I'm not sure where that quote comes from. It sounds like something one of the popular preachers out on the Westside, Dale Bronner would say. As usual I am cleaning up, listening to some good preaching, and I write something down. 

And when I have issues with people, that is, when folks do something to rub me the wrong way, I've gotten to the point where I do some internal soul searching. And that has been my habit for the past 15 years. And I am glad of it, for it wasn't a habit of my 20s. Although I wish it had been.

And you know when that first happened?  It was when I was married, and I absolutely did not like dude and did not know what to do about it.  I was whining in my prayers... Lord, he this, and he that... I hate him! blah blah blah...

And then one day there was a "Oh be quiet... I don't want to talk about him, I want to talk about YOU." *crickets*

And it was very interesting to hear something like that jump up out of my spirit. It was enough to make me abruptly shut up. I wanted to holler "As if!" But I knew not to.  I simply wrote those words down in my journal, and meditated on them.

And I allowed them to shape my prayers. And I received some good results.

And that has become the order of the day. 

And you know what I'm talking about here... those complicated conflicts with others in our lives.

And I didn't know how much this mattered until I took a divorce recovery class at my church some 12 years ago. I attended out of curiosity. Oh my, some of the stuff I heard on church grounds in THAT class. I thought the room was gonna catch fire.

And one of the central themes was that you can't change other people. You only have the power to change YOU. Let's work on treating this divorce like it's a skip on the record of the turntable of life. So now you have to work with God to help you see your own heart and to make the necessary corrections.

And that was a good thing. I was a bit ahead of the game. I'd already heard something similar in my heart a few years earlier, so I understood what the instructor meant. (I should write about that class sometime, if you want to hear about it.  It was fascinating).

And now you see why I quickly scribble quotes on spare pieces of paper, don't you?

The Art of Good Beauty Sleep

Do you know the meaning of getting some good beauty sleep?

Sister Callie Jo knows.

And she has known since she was a young babe.

And she knows even more now that she's 3 months old.

She's gonna have a crook in her neck sleeping like that. But she straightened it out.
Legs stretched out, arms delicately crossed... beautiful beauty sleep.

Then beauty sleep turns not so lovely:

 Oh no Sister Callie! Put your legs down, hon.  Don't show us all your bizness!

That's when beauty sleep turns into sleeping hard. She was even snoring. 

Ha ha...

She seems to have taken over Oscar's favorite resting spot these days on the blanket covering the ottoman. I don't think he's all that . He walks up quietly and stares at her.

Then looks at me...

Then looks back at her...

Then walks away. 

He must've decided that it is a good thing to have a few moments of peace.

Or he understands that Sister Callie needs her beauty sleep.

And yes, it is a reminder that we all need our beauty sleep, and we need to get it any which way we can.

Monday, July 14, 2014

Happy Monday Morning

Happy Monday Morning to you.

Or should I say afternoon?

All a matter of when you read this post. So whichever it is... hope it's HAPPY.

I had a decent weekend. I didn't do too much, but just enough. I don't do too well when I am running hard. And there was none of that. Thank goodness.

Anyway, I wanted to go the movies on Saturday, but whoops... there was a Triple F Posse meeting. That's a meeting of the Financial Freedom Fighters.

There have been a couple of meetings I have missed. That's because I didn't get an email about them. But I will try to keep up with them from now on. My sister came over and we rode to the meeting together.

It was good to catch up with everyone. I think since the last meeting I attended (in February), much has gone on. I will detail my thoughts in another post.

On Sunday after church, I went to see this movie.

I almost didn't make it, because I took a nap after church. But I ended up going to a 4:00 show.

Been waiting on that one for a good minute.

That was a good movie. I wouldn't call it "Great", but it definitely kept my attention. The tension was turned up from the very beginning.

The best thing about the movie was the villain, Koba:

He's what made the movie good. I was sitting there thinking "Can someone knock that dude out? Geez."

Now, what made my movie the most interesting was seeing it in the VIP lounge. I'd never heard of such and I was curious. That plus the 3D fee brought my ticket price up to $17. Yikes.

But I was curious. I didn't even know this particular theater had a VIP lounge.

They got it where you can't sneak in, because they card you at the entrance.

I tell you what, it is NICE up in there. The seats were leather recliners and very wide. Almost like being at home. And you could order food... ribs and steaks and chicken. And wine and champagne in real champagne glasses was available. Very nice. Folks were all dressed up. And there I was in my shorts and t-shirts and nikes.Who knew they had a VIP lounge stuck waaaaaay back off in the back of the theater? I never knew.

"This sure is nice," I said, as I looked around all wide-eyed and ate cherries out the plastic bag I had tucked away in my big purse. "This is cool."

Would I do it again? No. I was just curious.

I enjoyed my $17 VIP experience IMMENSELY. Yes I did. 

I didn't care for the 3D. I prefer 3D IMAX, but it wasn't available in that format. So next time I will just go to the standard film if it is not available in 3D IMAX.

That's about it for my weekend. The rest was the usual. My knee is still healing, so I wasn't able to do any yard work. And I wasn't all that upset about that. LOL

Quote of the Week.  Either your troubles make you better, or they make you bitter. We must always examine what's going on in our hearts.- T.D. Jakes

That's a good one. As I get older, I am looking for the lessons in my troubles. I am looking to grow from my troubles. But I do have a couple of things I am bitter about. I am continuously working on that.

Song of the Week. "Angel" by Angela Winbush

I love that song. By a real sanger. Enough said.

And I love R&B videos from the 80s. Just stand up there and sing the song, honey. None of this crazy off the wall production. None of this elaborate dance routine. Just put on your flyest outfits sang the song.

That's it for me. Sweepstakes still in full effect until August 13 or thereabouts. Leave a comment to enter.

Git your money... honey. 

Have a good week.

Not by default, but by design... And on purpose.

Friday, July 11, 2014

Freestyle Friday




This has been a good short week. Thank goodness for that.

I have been irking my boss this week. I have wailed much and ask to be sent home because of the fall I had last Sunday. I thought it would be better if I could just sit at home with my feet elevated whilst watching my favorite shows.

She told me to go elevate my feet at my desk. HUMPH.

She kicked me out of her office, told me to go talk to the director. I did. And the director laughed. Heartily. Especially when I said I should go home on some administrative or special disability leave.

Let's just say I have been working full 8 hour days. Full. 

I am healing up okay but I am a bit irritated at fooling with these bandages on my knee. I was doing well til this morning. I left my saline, witch hazel and extra bandages at home. I might have to run home and change this bandage and come back. It is nice to live 4.6 miles from the workplace. But I best not sit down and turn on that television. That's gonna be a... problem. Indeed.

Overall, this is a high class problem. And I have learned to appreciate high class problems for what they are.

And ya'll are starting to crank it up on the current LadyLee Sweepstakes. If you don't already know, you better ask somebody.

Or go read this post. There are two, possibly three $99 gift cards up for grabs. You better strategize.  And then you better go back and optimize that strategy.

You can buy plenty packs of panties at the Wal-mart for that... and some groceries too. And around these parts, some of our Wal-marts have the gas stations. You can buy plenty gasoline with $99.

I already see some good strategies shaping up.  You better git your money, honey. Really though.

This is a long lazy sweepstakes. It goes until August 13th, my 9th blog anniversary. There will be lots of 

I am looking forward to my weekend. I want to see this movie.

I'm trying to be up in some IMAX 3D place to see that one. I liked the prequel to this. I hope it's not cheesy. We will see.

That's about it... A few other randoms.

Quote of the Week. 

"Be who you are and quit trying to look and act like people think you should act."- Joe Samuel Ratliff

Mmm-hmm.  I read that last night just before drifting off to sleep. I woke up thinking about it.

I will just let that one marinate.

Picture of the Week. This one speaks for itself. Yes, it does.

Every sister remembers those days.  Sitting on the floor between Mama's legs.  The blue grease. The container where we kept our bows and barrettes.

The hair being snatched and gathered up all hard.

It's amazing how one picture brings back so many memories. I think I even had a shirt like that.

I would love that for my wall at home. I really would. 

Song of the Week. "Waiting" by Madonna.

Now that's off the Erotica album, which I happened to like way back when, some 22 years ago. It was a bit out there, but I like concept albums. This isn't my favorite song on the CD, but it has one of my favorite spoken word preambles:

Well I know from experience...
That if you have to ask for something more than once or twice
It wasn't yours in the first place

And it's hard to accept when you love someone
And you like to believe
In their moment of need
That they want what you want
And they don't

She ain't no Jill Scott, but that verse has always stuck with me. All these years. I know what it's like to feel that way.

One of Madonna's less ratchet moments. Thank goodness for that.

That is all for me. I am looking forward to the weekend.

Because it's going to be a good one. On purpose. 

Thursday, July 10, 2014

Salad Days

Here's the salad of the week...

Awww yes. My eyes. They glazeth over when I see that.

During the summer I have a huge thing for nectarines. So I will cut up a whole nectarine over a salad right now and just be fine and dandy with that. Of course I like a little something else on it, like some strawberries and a few nuts. Splash on a little balsamic vinegarette and I'm good to go.

There's a little slaw on the side there also. That's called Open-up-the-fridge-and-use-that-before-it-goes-bad tactics. Yes it is.

Since I eat a ton of salad, I like very good high quality salad greens.  My favorite brand of salad is Organic Girl.

They sell that up at the Whole Foods. That's why I be up in there so much. It's the cheapest place to buy it. $1.50 cheaper than the local grocery store. The size above is one pound. That will last me a week and a half. A pound for $5.98, baby! Whoo-hoo!

And they have the widest variety I have seen. I think I've counted up to 20 different lettuce or greens in their some 10 brands of salad mix. This is good, as I get to learn about different types of greens and I don't get bored with my salads. 


A few weeks ago, I was perusing the local Whole Foods produce section, and there was a young lady standing at a booth with a huge bowl of lettuce just standing alone.

*LadyLee's antennae goes sky high*

"Well hello there," I said. "Looks like you have some lettuce here."

"Yes, I do," she says. "This is good lettuce, and we're giving out free samples today. It's from a local farm. Would you like some?"

Well shut my mouth wide open. You ain't gotta ask me nothing twice.

"Yes, I'd like some of that lettuce."

And it was a local lettuce.

And it was indeed from a local farm down in Forest park, which is a short 20 minute drive, down on the South side. It looks like the brand name is "Encore Mix". They need to be more forthright with that.

She gave me a bowl of lettuce.

I wanted to say, "Uh, could you please cut that up? And could you give me a little more?"

But I didn't.

Free lettuce is GOOD lettuce.I would just have to work with it.

She sprinkled on some balsamic vinergarette.  I bought some of the lettuce. I don't normally care for straight green lettuce, but they had a brand with some purple lettuce mixed in.  And I checked out, got in the car, and ate my lettuce on the way home.

It was very good. VERY FRESH. She said it had just been picked that morning, and uh... I could tell.

But it is too delicate for my tastes. (And it says "delicate" on the cover. Hmm). I like a lettuce mix that is more hearty.

But this type of lettuce would be perfect on a sandwich. It had just the right amount of flavor and crunch.

And I had to go look back for the balsamic vinegarette that she used because it was the best I ever had. It's a boutique brand, but it takes me roughly a month to go through a bottle of dressing, so I will splurge from time to time on it.

I was just happy to get some free lettuce, honey.

Nothing like it... except maybe for some free nectarines. LOL.

Wednesday, July 09, 2014

Quotable Quotes: Of Shadows, Secrets, and Failures

For my best friend in my head, reader Lisa B., who is my personal psychotherapist, and lover of LadyLee food-for-thought. 

Here's a good quote. I am not sure where I got this from, but it is written on a strip of paper I found while cleaning out a purse.

You don't believe me? Here you go...

Hmm.... No telling where I got that from. It had to be good since I tore off a strip of paper and wrote it out. So I must've been riding in my car. That might be something off of Black Talk radio.

But here's the quote:

Don't allow the shadows of the past to disqualify you from the greatness of your future. Stop condemning yourself over your past secrets and failures. 

Now that is a good one.

You know, I've always wondered what it would be like to wake up and not remember all the messed up stuff I did yesterday or in years past.

Another way to ask that question, and one I've read a book on some 15 years ago... What would I do if there was no fear.

Because the shadows of the past, the secrets, and failures of the past... they are all bundled up warmly in fear, you know.

And fear paralyzes.

Just a thought.

You know, I'm always amazed at something, even within my ownself:

Me and all the people I associate with have such amazing long lists of accomplishments. Long long lists.  We should be able to recite those loudly and proudly.

But it's those doggone internal secrets and failures that always seem to crop up and get the limelight. They seem to always occupy the front row of our minds, center stage even. Why is that?

Personally I think we are trained in that type of "stinking thinking". It's a subtle thing, but true nevertheless.

Because think about it... what do we see and hear in our music and television programming, etc?

Much of it is steeped in negativity. I read in a book that stated how we are constantly bombarded with negative imagery from our media, yet we don't even realize it. However, it does affect how we feel about ourselves and our abilities. I find that interesting. 

Maybe it's just me seeing that. But I also find it quite peculiar that people who go without tv, etc., for a period of time have an overall increase in the quality of their lives. Is it just me seeing that?

All I know I make sure to not surround myself with people who will not hold my past up to my face and judge me by it. And that is difficult in this "gotcha" society these days.

For everything now seems to be about exposing people's secrets and failures... and all those skeletons that lurk in the dark shadows of the past.

Now it's... 

Ha Ha, gotcha... I found out your secret!

Ha, Ha, gotcha... you failed at what you were trying to do. 

(Now I get to talk about and laugh at you. Sigh).

When the truth is that we have all had secrets. We have all failed at something.

We can't move forward whilst constantly looking over our shoulders at our dark shadows and at that secret thing or that particular failure.

At least that is what I tell myself when I look at my own. It's almost like looking at the sun. Or a train wreck. I know I'm not suppose to look, but... 

I know I have this dream in my heart, but, but, but... What about what happen last time I tried that? Sigh

I'm not sure I can ever get away from the residue left behind from those dark and questionable areas of my past. But I sure know that I don't have to focus on them. I'd rather focus on my long laundry list of accomplishments, epiphanies, and achievements instead.

And my list is long... It's dragging on the ground.

Long enough to cover the shadows of the past.


LadyLee Favorites: Eight Ball's Lost.

This post is for blog brother 12Kyle, because I remember he said he likes this CD too.

I can't say that I listen to much urban rap music these days. It is a bit too simplistic and violent.

Maybe I'm just getting old.

If I want to hear something good, I have to dig into my crates and find it. And today, I have been listening to one of my FAVORITE rap CDs, Eightball's Lost.

I loved this CD. Played it to death. It's out of Suave House, and back in the day, I liked that production team. And Eight ball is an EXCELLENT story teller.

But I am just now looking at the CD cover.

I was a little disturbed by the buzzards. That's not safe.

But what's up with the crashed space shuttle behind the car? I can't believe I've never paid much attention to that. Hmm.

Anyway, here are some of my favorite songs. (Mind you, I am doing this because I want to listen to my favorites all in one place, lol). And of course, I have some commentary. 

"Put the House on It"

That song had some interesting lines that I am still thinking about... as they are a bit over my head:

"What must be, shall be. And that which is necessity to him that struggles is little more than choice to him that is willing."

"Heaven is above all, and death is the judge that no king can corrupt. And hell? Hell is only the truth seen to late."

That's a bit... deep. That's like, some food-for-thought on some other level. Better not put that in a current rap song. There's gonna be problems. That is too complex for these young ones to understand.

"All for Nothing"

That song is an example of some good storytelling. I like that. Give me a story, something I can follow.  And it has a good message. And the lady singing the hook sounds like a wannabe Aretha Franklin, lol.

"Down and Out"

I love the hook on this song. I am sure that is a remake of sold old school song. But this is a good story about the ills of the drug dealer life. It makes me see it's not a good idea to sell drugs, it does. Humph.

"Coffee Shop"

This is my favorite rap duo song of all time. Yes it is. Favorite, favorite, favorite.  

Favorite line: "My kitchen fridge look like Jeffrey Dhama's, boys screaming for mama from the drama!''

Man. Redman wrong for saying that. He just wrong.

"Ball and Bun". Another one of my favorite rap duets.

"Pure Uncut"  This is one of my favorite collabos. 


 I can't say I care for Silkk the Shocker. I never thought he was a good rapper. Master p is his brother, so I guess that helps you get on, right?

And last but not least, one of the better "Dedicated to my Mama" songs I've heard. And it's a good story.

"This is Dedicated"

Alright, that was fun. It makes me want to pull up some of my other favorite rap CDs.

Tuesday, July 08, 2014

Sister Callie Jo Update

For the BOP..

So BOP ,who I didn't think was a "cat man", wants more pictures of Callie Jo. LOL

The thing is that I don't have too many good pictures of her. She moves too fast these days. And unless I am trying to take pictures, it just doesn't work out. These in this post are fuzzy at best.

And Sister Callie has figured out, uh... Oldgirl Ladylee ain't that much of a cat person. I mean, I will play with her here and there, but she realizes we are very laid back in these parts. So she needs to sit her tail down somewhere. And she does that more and more these days. She has learned to entertain herself. And she likes to sleep under the bed. (I am glad of that. I didn't like waking up with her snuggled in my armpit or around my neck. Unh-unh.)

She had another booster shot last week, and she doubled in weight over a three week period. O_O.

She is getting big.

Here she is with one of my crochet squares.

I can't talk trash about the squares. She is going under and inside the couch and finding squares from many YEARS ago. She tends to play with those. I keep my regular squares I am working with put up somewhere.

On more of a regular basis, at least a couple of times per hour, this is the usual scenario. 
She tries to throw him in a headlock and bite him on the back of the neck. As you can see from the look on Oscar's face (and he is screeching hard), he is not amused. Not in the least.

I usually let this activity go unchecked.  But there is nothing worse than waking up to a screeching Oscar... at 3 in the morning. That causes all kinds of problems.

"What the HELL is wrong with ya'll! Get outta my room! Right now!" I holler.

*Oscar and Callie scrambling out of the bedroom*

*LadyLee closing the bedroom door... tightly*

I have had to take him by the shoulders...

And look him in straight into the eyes...

And talk to him.

"Oscar, you can't let her jump you like that.  As Miss Celie told Harpo that day out in the field, I tell you:


Beat her, Oscar. Beat the brakes off of her. Whoop her tail good fashion. I don't care. 

And that's what he does. Holds her down, Snatch her by the collar and bite and snap at her.

Punch her a few times, dude. Get her scrambling for her life.  KICK HER BUTT!
He kicks her tail so bad that I find her break-away collar in the middle of the floor.

Then she will leave him alone. It is almost as if she is saying "Oscar, it's too much. I need to go sit down somewhere."

Yes you do, Sister Callie. Go church jog over in the corner somewhere.

Oscar isn't slick. He will notice she's not around for awhile, and he will go walk up on her and sit there and just... stare.  And that gets her all riled up again.

He gets a kick out of that. He's not fooling me.

But Oscar-Tyrone's overall preference is to lay down and rest awhile.
That's the only time he tolerates her being up on him.

Thank goodness when the good Sister Callie Jo takes time to sit down and meditate.

Thank goodness for us all.

Monday, July 07, 2014

Monday Night Fights: Holiday and Sweepstakes Edition

Good Monday Afternoon...

I didn't plan on posting today, as I write much of my Good Monday Morning material on Sunday evenings (save for the intro), but I thought I would anyway, being that this is the first day back after the holidays.

Nothing much happened this holiday weekend. I must say I enjoyed everyone else's activities.  Between all the facebook and twitter talk about Prince's performance at the Essence festival and various family get-togethers, there was a lot going on. And I felt like I was experiencing it all myself.

I myself did nothing particularly special for the 4th. Holidays make me extremely skittish and for the most part, I don't really care to deal with them. (My sister and I had a conversation about this last month, and I said something that disturbed her deeply. I will do a food-for-thought post about that soon).

Anyway, I hadn't heard from my sister, and my goal is to make sure she has a good holiday. Our family just doesn't get together. It's WAY too much drama, and you know I can't deal with too much over-stimulation these days. But our tradition for the two of us has been to get together and hang out and cook and watch movies.

I gave her a call since I hadn't heard from her, and she forgot that a holiday was coming up (Yes, she seems to be like me. But she repressed the holiday. Wow). But I told her I would cook a little something up, and that I did.

Now I would have LOVED to have some of this:

And some of THAT:


But we didn't.

(But that sure does look good, doesn't it... especially the shrimp and crab. WOW)

I haven't cranked up my grill in some 5 years. I'm thinking about getting rid of it. Instead I bought 3 or 4 ribs and 10 drummettes off the barbeque bar at the local whole foods.  That was as good as it gets. (Oh and that was from the super high upper class rich white peoples' Whole Foods. I go out there when I am feeling a might bit... fancy).

I was more interested in my vegetables. I made my favorites: kale, mushroom and potato stirfry and a roasted butternut squash-pear- cranberry dish.  I also made potato salad and baked beans. And I bought some grilled veggies off the Whole Foods bar. So I think we were all good. I just wanted to make sure she had her fill, I had mine, and she had a good size plate to take home.

I have my veggie side dishes for the week. And that was my main goal.

Anyway, we watched a couple of movies. She hadn't seen the Thor sequel, so we watched that. And there was a movie she liked on Netflix titled Pretty Ugly People. That was good, but it was a bit too deep for me. I may have to watch it again to "get" it.

Now, I've been into a couple of interesting series on Netflix:

Both of those are good. And they are great as backdrops for when I am cleaning up. LOL

Let's see... I didn't do much of anything on Saturday, save for travel out to the east side to get a new battery for my house alarm system. There's nothing worse than laying across the bed and that panel just starts beeping like crazy. First of all, both cats dashed like someone was chasing them. And I'd never heard it before. They mailed a battery the last time, but this time I had to roll out and get it. It is ODD going in a store that just sells batteries. And the place was crowded.

Afterwards, I visited a Whole Foods in that area. And it was the smallest one I'd ever been to. They won't be seeing me again. But they did have my cheap vegetable staples I like a lot (which are cheaper than at my farmers market and grocery store). And they did have my 39 cent water refill station. Hell, that's all I care about. So IF I happen to be out that way, I can drop in and get what I need. I came back and home and that was about it.

Now on Sunday something horrid happened... Well horrid to me. I fell down outside in the driveway. I don't know how. All I know I was laid out on the ground face down, left cheek to the ground, next to Pam. Lord help me.

I scraped my knee something horrible and I sprained my ankle slightly. I am still trying to figure it all out. But I had to bring out some of that old nasty witch hazel. That worked out well. And for some odd reason, Witch Hazel drives Callie Jo CRAZY. Not sure what's in it, but goodness... that little cat was trying to attack me while I was using it. Wow. She's too young to react to catnip, but that witch hazel did something to her. I have to make sure to keep that put up.

I was a little messed up last night, found it hard to walk. I was better this morning, and I went into work late.  I am limping slightly, but I seem to be healing up fine.

That just shocked me... Ugh. I was just trying to go get some gas for my lawn mower. Now I can't mow my lawn. And I have to go to Wal-mart after work and get some gauze and tape.

These are high class problems. It could have been worse. And I am thankful it wasn't. I will happily carry my tail over to the underground Wal-mart some 5 miles from my job and buy as much gauze and tape as I can hold in my arms. Yes I will. Happily, mind you.

That's it for me... We MUST have a Song of the Week. I listen to a ton of music on my Spotify account. And this is one of my top 10 favorite songs of all time, and it happens to be playing right now.  Patti Austin's "Heat of Heat":

I just love love LOVE that song. It was playing at my high school prom. My date was Reggie. I was sixteen and he was 21. He was my Mom's friend son, and I asked him to take me. And he said yes.

I liked him. He looked like a broke singer Prince with a short afro... if you could imagine such. He even said he met Prince once. He worked for UPS and had a delivery for him while he was here in Atlanta and he was so shocked at how short Prince was without the high heel boots. LOL.

This was the first song we danced to. And we slow dragged to a couple of other songs. (I WISH I could remember those songs). I was just SHOCKED to dance that close to this dude who I thought of as "grown".

We went to the Red Lobster afterwards. He ordered a shark entree, and he ordered a drink.

Ordering shark, having a drank, and being 21.  In my young 16 year old mind, he was... dangerous.

But he had always been really nice to me, and that had to have been the most fun on a date I'd ever had, even though it was purely platonic. (Don't worry about this age thing. This was 28 years ago. And I was a senior in high school. And I was FAR from virginal. Nothing was happening that night. That was my mama's friend son... talk about getting in a load of trouble. Yikes). 

The last time I saw Reggie was at his mother's funeral a few years later. I shook his hand and told him I was sorry about him losing his mother. Haven't seen him since. But he was a really nice guy, and I am sure he still is.

And every time I hear that song, I think of him and the good time we had.

I just want to get up where ever I am and just do... Wonder Woman spins.

HA HA...

Okay, with that... that is all...

Heads up... 9th bloggaversary is coming up in early August. So you know what that means: 



And you know the trend.

My seed sowing has really sucked this year. I have a certain amount I like to give away per year, whether it is by helping someone, giving to a charity, etc. And the last two years have been bleeeeeeh... as I have only met half my goal.

And it is a strange feeling to offer to help someone and get rejected. Ugh. But that is alright.

You know the trend with sweepstakes. So we have some $99 gift cards available.

Some means more than one... So you know there will be two. Possibly 3. Not sure yet. I would LOVE to give away 3 gift cards... I have for some reason been salivating about that for the past few months for some reason. Wow.

My special employee Commander By is deployed on a special mission out on the West Coast right now, but he should be back in time to pull a name out of the hat. And as always, there is a prize for most comments. And I might shock ya with a third gift card.

Wal-mart and Target are your choices. Blame Serenity_23 for that. She had me on a witch hunt for a dang MAC gift card. Never again... frickin' chicken.

So this will run from now until bloggaversery date which I think is August 13th.

And like I have always said, I am not a comments whore. Ya'll can continue to lurk. I don't care.

But you need to get that money, honey. Comment here, or text me if you have my cell number, or send a tweet, or email...  We have some Ladylee sweepstakes veterans who have some interesting techniques and strategies, and they have won over the years.  So get on it, doggonit!

I like email and texts. We have some serious private convos about posts. It is mad enlightening, it is.  Ya'll really do solve a ton of my issues.

So work it out. Comment to win. Get your money honey.

I have a TON of posts. Might get a good 40 posts in, as I am pondering the first half of 2014 pretty hard. A load of food-for thought is laying around in my brain.


With that... have a good week.

By design and On purpose.