LITERALLY UNDER CONSTRUCTION
UNDER THE SEA CONSTRUCTION Blackened Grouper Cheek Po’ Boys ———————————————————————-
Welcome to 2021 Julie Barefoot Blogging
Happy New Year!
(I guess. We’ll see won’t we?)
Normally I like starting out a New Year, New Blog Post with new photos of myself, usually sitting at my computer desk blogging. However, we are into January and our house is currently under dissarray due to the renovations that we had going on since October 2020. It’s also cold outside and things are a bit dull and wintry here in Florida so there really isn’t some lovely spot I can plop myself down upon and have Gordon take photos. We do tend to just stay home because of the pandemic as it is. So, I harkened back to these photos that were taken in September 2020. Not that long ago, I know. But still.
I find it very intriguing that we are living in such an interesting time. That is an ancient Chinese Proverb, ya know? ‘May you live in interesting times’ sounds like such a nice blessing but it is actually a curse. Because we are living in interesting times right now and I don’t think anyone views this in a positive way.
I have no earthly idea what 2021 holds for us. Well, actually I do have a hint of it, but we will end up exploring it together as we go. I want to thank all of you that have been a part of my life for almost a decade now, since I started the website in 2011. I want you to know that I appreciate you. You are always welcome here. As an Empath I am closer to you than you realize. I believe that is one reason that I am so honest and open with all of you, exposing my life, my frailties, my past, and the abuse that I have suffered from childhood on. I mean, as an Empath I can read so many of you, that I think that is why I confide so much of myself. I believe in evening the score. If I can know about you, then you should know about me.
I believe in asking for help. I believe in giving help. We are all in this together. Whatever “this” is. We need to put aside the pride in ourselves, and we need to put aside the prejudice as well. Quit looking down on those that need help, and quit resisting asking for help when you need it.
America, and the American people need to change in order to survive. We need to quit this ‘go it alone’ attitude. No one can make it alone. We need friends. We need allies. We need supporters. But, we also need to be worthy of that support. We need to quit imposing our beliefs on other cultures and just allow them to believe as they wish. And to respect their beliefs. We don’t have all the answers and we need to realize that. I like other cultures. I like their foods, I like their arts, I even like their beliefs. I don’t have to follow them, but I like knowing about them.
My wish for 2021 is that we can actually be the America that our ancestors realized.
I’m onboard for that! Are You?
“You have brains in your head, you have feet in your shoes you can steer yourself any direction you choose. You’re on your own, and you know what you know and YOU are the one who’ll decide where to go. You’ll get mixed up, of course, as you already know you’ll get mixed up with many strange birds as you go so be sure when you step, step with care and great tact and remember that life’s a great balancing act.”
(If we are to ban Dr. Seuss for some of his writings then we will ban every writer in the history of our country. I am no racist. I believe in fairness and equality. But I have learned from some controversial writer’s through the years. I myself have written some controversial things that would get some people upset. That doesn’t make me a bad person. Let’s be open minded about the times that we live in now, and live up to those standards, while we also acknowledge the times of old, and recognize their failures in not knowing any better. Sometimes it’s difficult to see 100 years into the future.)
Julie, The Photographer
I wanted to post one of my daughter Veronica’s paintings.
She is quite the artist and we are very proud of her.
If you would like to read my 2020 blog:
Our website is a living website where I update old pages and posts as well as creating new ones. I realize that for those of you that would like to see content updated you may not know where to go?
Well, you can go right here:
BLOG POSTS START RIGHT HERE
People always assume that a relationship with me is theirs to do with as they please. I always find it interesting when they find out differently.
June 14, 2021
My Life in the Slow Lane
and Other Musings…
It was about 10 years ago that Gordon was hit from behind while sitting at a stop light, by a woman in a Jeep going about 25 MPH. She slammed into him! It was when Gordon was going to Culinary School. His classes were in the morning and he would leave the school around noon and then drive into work at the Military Base for his then 8 hour shift before making it home that night around 10:00 p.m. It was while he was driving into work that he would call me and we would talk on his way to work. Because his school and work took up most of each day we would find ways to talk to each other. After all, he would leave early every morning Monday – Friday, and come home late every night. The only time we were able to spend any time together were the weekends and holidays.
I think it was a Friday when Gordon and I were talking on the phone while he was driving into work that I suddenly heard this loud noise and I asked Gordon what that was? He didn’t answer me. I asked him again? He didn’t answer me. It was about 30 seconds later that I heard some noises on the phone and that is when I heard Gordon’s voice say to me, “Julie, someone hit me from behind. I need to call the police.” I asked him if he wanted me to do anything? He said no, and that he would call me back and tell me what was going on. Brodie was here at home with me so I told him what happened. We waited for a phone call for about 20-30 minutes. That was when the phone rang and it was a female cop. She told me that he is o.k. but that an ambulance did take him to the hospital that is close by. She also told me to come and get his car before it is towed away. She said it is drivable.
Brodie drove me into Tampa in my car to where Gordon was hit and I could see his car parked on the side of the road and the female cop that I had talked to was still at the scene. She was very helpful and nice and polite to me. Brodie made sure I was o.k. and then he left to drive back home to get ready for work. I was told where Gordon was taken so I went to the emergency room to be with him.
I opened the car door and every where in his car there was money! All in change. Quarters, Dimes, Nickles, Pennies… a sea of glistening glittery money. EVERYWHERE!!! All over the floor board, the seats, the dash, the backseat, the back floor boards….. Gordon had a habit of dumping his change into various little nooks and crannies in his car and then never doing anything about it. I could tell from all that money scattered everywhere that he got hit hard!
From the moment I arrived at that emergency room asking about Gordon every single person I encountered all asked me the same thing, “Does he have insurance?” “Does he have insurance?” “Does he have insurance?” I cannot even count the times I was asked that by every hospital personnel that I encountered even when I was just asking for directions, including the woman mopping the floor as I made my way to where they had Gordon asked me if we had insurance. (I’m thinking that she was probably instructed to ask that by her supervisor as part of her job. Otherwise, why would she?)
When I saw Gordon he was laying out on a stretcher wearing a neck brace. They had taken some x-rays and nothing was broken but he smashed his knee into the dashboard and ended up having surgery at a later date. He was sore and worried about his neck and his back. Right when the accident happened he had the insight to grab his ice cooler used to keep his lunch cool that he kept in his lunchbox, and placed it on his neck. He’s very smart in that way. He always has quick reactions and good instincts.
When Gordon was given the all clear we left the hospital but as we were walking to the exit all this money just started flying off his body. Quarters! Dimes! Nickel’s! Pennies!!! There was money tucked in all his nooks and crannies from the crash and didn’t emerge until he stood upright. We started laughing and I started referring to him King Midas. 🙂
We were both hungry and decided to swing by Chick Fil-A and grab some chicken sandwiches for lunch and even dinner that night. He didn’t feel good and I wasn’t about to spend the evening cooking. The thing is that neither one of us had any cash on us. I hadn’t gone to the bank that week and Gordon had spent his last paper money on gas. That is when I told him that we have all the money we need, just look around the car there must be $100.00 here easily! Oh the look on the girl at the drive through window when we paid for 4 Chicken Sandwiches, 4 Waffle Fries, and a side of Chicken Nuggets with about $24.00 worth of change. 🙂 Priceless!!!
The reason I am telling you this story is because it must have been a few weeks ago where we were talking about this wreck and Gordon drew a parallel of what I would have done if I had been in the car that day at that exact moment. I then pointed out to him that I wouldn’t have been hit at all, the car that was in front of you would have been hit, not me. He then asked me how I know that? Simple, because I wouldn’t have been in that lane. I would have been in the slow lane.
When I was managing my mother’s rental condo out in Indian Shores I would have to drive out there many a Saturday morning when the current renters would check out and to get it ready for the next renters usually checking in later on that day. Gordon would come out there with me, usually driving my car while I was in the passenger’s side working on some plans for the website or things that we wanted and needed to do. And every Saturday was the same, all of a sudden Gordon would jerk us this way or that way to avoid someone slamming into us, or cutting in front of us, or side swiping us. This became a common occurrence every single Saturday. I started getting mad at Gordon and blaming him for all these near misses, after all, I NEVER had these kinds of problems when I would drive out to the condo by myself.
By the time we would arrive at the condo we were nervous wrecks and usually mad at each other.
I then realized what the problem was, every time that Gordon would drive us out there he would get into those fast lanes where the more aggressive personalities would drive. I however, would drive in the slower lane because my personality isn’t that aggressive and I am more cautious. I also allow plenty of time to get out there. I allow for traffic. If I get there 10 minutes later than the average person then so what? I’m never late! I always get there early and sometimes I get there on time. But, I plan for things. I enjoy the car ride. The ocean view over the bridges to the condo. Listening to Public Radio and my CD’s and even sometimes a Cassette Tape. I’m that old. 🙂
BUT, I rarely ever encounter all the drama that Gordon would because I am driving in the slow lane.
One day about a few months ago we were headed somewhere and Gordon was complaining about the car in the lane beside us. I asked what was wrong with that car? Gordon said he is going too slow. I then pointed out to him that the man is not going slow he is going the speed limit and why in the world does Gordon care about a man driving the speed limit in the lane next to us? Gordon then realized that was a stupid thing to worry about and that is when I went in for the kill. When you put yourself in those faster lanes with the more aggressive drivers then you are putting your health and safety at greater risk than I am. Oh, we have our fender bender’s in the slow lane, but we usually aren’t carted off in an ambulance to the emergency room. I then told him that I no longer wanted to go anywhere with him because he makes me too nervous and that from now on we can just drive in separate cars. It was then that he started changing and staying out of those lanes and now comes home not as angry as he used to. And not as stressed as he used to be as well. I also no longer hear of all those dramatic stories of near misses that I used to. Gordon does have a more aggressive personality than I do. Not that he is aggressive, he’s just more aggressive than me.
So, Life in the Slow Lane, Huh?
Sounds boring doesn’t it?
Well, it may be boring but it is safer, smarter, more responsible…..
I want to talk about something else that just happened recently out in California. A woman was driving down the highway in Orange County when a white van cut her off and she flipped them the bird for doing so. That is when someone in that van shot into the back of the woman’s car with a bullet hitting the stomach of her 6 year old son. He died. Although the woman did nothing wrong with shooting that white van the bird, that does fall under Freedom of Speech, it most likely provoked the reaction from the white van in shooting at her.
Had that been me I wouldn’t have done anything. I’m not the kind of person that goes around flipping people off. Oh, I would have been upset at the near miss. But, I would have collected myself and moved on. It is not in me to go around flipping people off. It’s just not my personality.
The point that I am getting to is that we live in a dangerous country full of dangerous people with guns. A bunch of hot heads that would rather kill us than deal with us. Our government is not going to protect us from these crazy people with guns whether they be democrats or republicans, therefore we need to look out for ourselves. I’m not talking about arming up and having shoot out’s at the mall. I’m talking about perhaps just living life in the slow lane. If someone cuts you off then maybe think twice before flipping off that hot head. Maybe taking the longer, safer route to a destination instead of the quicker more popular way.
No one is looking out for you!
Our government is not going to protect us from these crazy people with guns so perhaps we need to start looking out for ourselves, and our loved ones?
Life in the Slow Lane is not so bad. Life is what we make of it. Is it really important to be the first to arrive at a destination? Let someone else blaze that trail and just arrive when all is taken care of and safe.
Know that bad things do happen to those of us in the Slow Lane but just not as bad or as serious as those that don’t.
P.S. Gordon had to go through physical therapy, acupuncture, massage therapy, and have knee replacement surgery because of that wreck. He also suffers from migraine’s, about 2 a month. They started right after that wreck.
May 29, 2021
Looking Forward to Memorial Day Weekend
Sunning in the Herb Garden
(Still Covid Shy)
I realize that it is supposed to be an unpopular thing to do in this day and age, sunning oneself. However, the sun has been a part of my life since I was born, and it always will be. This is the sunniest side of our house. We have many trees, as well as our neighbors so we don’t get a lot of sunlight streaming through, except on this part of our property. Not always, but every now and then I love to lay out in the sun soaking up that vitamin D. I see why people can become addicted to tanning. Vitamin D just makes you feel good.
I also believe that tanning is a form of control. There was a time many years ago that the only thing in my life that I could control was my skin color and my weight. I had the darkest tan and the skinniest body. Other than that I had no control over my life. But, that was long ago. Now I just like to get a bit of sun here and there because I enjoy it.
There are Vitamin D pills that you can take to give you that lift that the sun does. It won’t tan your skin but it will improve your mood. Something to think about, huh?
Memorial Day Weekend
Memorial Day Weekend isn’t what it used to be. Before there were parades and events honoring those that lost their lives defending our country. Now it’s just a day off where we drink and grill out. There are those of us that do still think of those that sacrificed for us. And those that do not care less about it. Gone are the parades and the acknowledgements. Now we just eat, drink and be merry.
It’s o.k., I’m not here to criticize or condemn. I do think it is sad that so many sacrificed their lives so that the end result is that half of my country could be fascists and try their best to turn us into an authoritarian society by over throwing our government. Which is what happened and where we are headed. Can it be stopped? Not by weak people. It will take strength. Power. Action. So, no. Not much will be done because the so called “good guys” are weak as hell.
Our only options are to either fight to the death, or conform and go underground. Be silenced until perhaps the day comes where we can safely speak out and make change. Survival is all about conforming to what is going on around us. The smart adapt, the weak die out.
I have no Earthly idea what is to come but judging by the democrats response to everything the republicans do is pathetic. We don’t need wimps, we need fighters.
So, this Memorial Day I weep for those that wasted their lives dying for a nation that is rooting for the day we can have a dictator to rule over us. You wasted your time, you wasted your life. But not to worry, I’m sure your children will defend your sacrifice. Or not. We’ll see.
Although I am only one voice I do acknowledge your sacrifice. I thank you and appreciate you.
May 25, 2021
And I Bet You Thought I’d Have This Done By Now
Haven’t Unpacked From our Renovations
I just thought I would catch up a bit. We’ve been busy. A good busy, not a stressful busy. We’ve also been exhausted from our outside projects. But a good tired, not a worthless tired. When we go to bed at night we may be a bit sore and tired but it’s a satisfied tired. When you are pleased with all that you have accomplished for the day. I go to bed with a smile on my face. 🙂
Gordon finished the front yard new retaining wall.
This was a big upgrade to our front yard from the jungle that we had.
We also finished the backyard herb garden, side of the house, stones project.
A Picnic in the Herb Garden
Gordon ripped them up from here:
This is the area we are having professionally paved so we are having to remove these stones to make way for the progress. We needed somewhere to put them so I got the idea to place them all along our side herb garden. Gordon had the suggestion that we pour grass seed all around the stones in the photos above, so that grass can grow up through the spaces.
Initially Gordon wanted to place the stones along the herb garden on top of a sand base which is what you do if you really want it done professionally. I however, just think that when rainy season gets here and that side of the house always floods, I believe they will just sink into the ground and settle themselves. It will also be nice to walk on the stones as opposed to the soggy wet ground which is always the case.
Gordon Repairing and Rebuilding the C-Shaped Retaining Wall
Gordon built this retaining wall about 12 years or so ago. It was perfect, and it was the very first one he ever built. This was even before we put up the fence so we had neighbors always wandering over to our backyard to look at it. However, as the years have passed tree roots have interfered with it’s perfection, along with our fountain falling apart and the original azalea’s just didn’t look that good anymore so we decided that we wanted the whole thing redone and built up all over again with something nice and new inside.
The urgency to get this repaired and rebuilt quickly is because we are having that entire area around the retaining wall professionally done as in a nice patio, and a path around the retaining wall to our round retaining wall right outside our back screen door. Also, a brick path from the time we enter our backyard through our double fence to this retaining wall.
The professional work is supposed to start in the next few weeks. I wouldn’t mind putting it off another month or so just to have the time to complete a few more projects before the work starts. Also, there is prep on our part to get done before they start and I would love the extra time. However, I think we go by their time line and not ours.
The good news is that we have a 3 day weekend coming up, Memorial Day, and we have something very special planned to cook, but we also have lots of work planned so that we can do as much as possible before the professional work starts.
Very Excited for All That is to Come,
May 9, 2021
Happy Mother’s Day
May 6, 2021
Grump’s New Border Wall
(A.K.A. (G)ordon’s T(rump) New Border Wall
We’re building a border wall to keep the squirrels out. Yeah right!
Actually, if you have been following along then you know we hired a shady landscaper to remove our jungle that we had here……
The Before Photo of Said Jungle
Now that the area has been cleared Gordon has started construction on his “border wall” as we like to call it. 🙂
He’s still working on it and once he has completed it then we will add some nice plants and then cover the area in wood chips. It will look very nice until our yard guys blow leaves and debris into it just so they don’t have to pick anything up and cart it away. But hey, at least it will be beautiful for about 30 minutes. Just long enough for me to photograph and make everyone think it looks like that all the time.
The Sprinkler Guys
Again, if you have been following along then you know of our encounter with Lyin’ _Rian and his Extremest Landscaping LLC where he really did rip us off and not only did his crew chop through ONE of our sprinkler pipes, we discovered that he had actually chopped through THREE of them! THREE!!! That explains why he never bothered fixing the one pipe that Gordon did find out about. He knew it was a much bigger job so he kept quiet. Oh, and do you remember the cables that I told you that he chopped through? We thought they were old telephone cables? They were actually sprinkler cables that had to be repaired otherwise our valves won’t open to allow water through the pipes in order to water our lawn.
The good news is that we contacted a sprinkler company through the recommendation of a neighbor, the two brother’s who own the business showed up on Tuesday, stayed over 4 hours fixing everything. They even geared our sprinklers to water certain areas that don’t get much water. And the bill was just over $800.00. We’re just happy that everything is fixed and working. We are not going to dwell on Lyin’ _Rian, we are more interested in moving forward and completing the new front yard landscaping and making it look nice. We are also very excited about the projects that will be coming to fruition in our backyard soon.
You know, everyone has gotten ripped off during their lifetime by some con artist. We however, have been very lucky in our lives to not have encountered much of that. So, as I see it, it was just our turn. Glad our turn is over with. 🙂
May 3, 2021
Where I Stand on the Trans Issues
(I’m pretty much just figuring things out as time goes by.)
This is actually more of an advocation to allow those of us who really don’t have much of an opinion, time to just sort of let things unfold as they will? After all, we will get used to it no matter what it is so let’s just give it some time?
I keep reading about how some politicians are banning healthcare for trans youth, banning them from participating in competitive sports, and banning them from using public restrooms that are different from their birth gender assignments. (See, I did refer to ‘birth gender assignments’ as having some thoughtful acknowledgement to the trans community.) 🙂
I cannot imagine being born as a female on the outside, but being a male on the inside? I cannot imagine having to wear dresses and make up when I really want to wear jeans and flannel shirts? I know these people exist and I sympathize with their situation.
There is a very famous actress out there that you all know of and that is a few years older than me. She has had a successful acting career. She was born into two famous parents whose names you all know, as in famous movie stars. I believe they are both dead at this writing. She just happened to be born with both a penis and a vagina at birth. And, for whatever reason her parents decided to make her a girl? Perhaps on the advice of the doctor? Perhaps the vagina was more formed than the penis? I don’t know any details, I only know the story. But, when you look at this actress she not only looks very masculine, but she also look very feminine all at the same time. That would explain having both hormones inside of her. I am a fan of hers. I love her movies especially around HALLOWEEN….. (Look, I’m spoon feeding you people into figuring this out.)
Anyway, she was one of the first actresses to get breast implants. After all she didn’t really have breasts because of the male inside of her. She also can’t have children which is why she adopted two children with her husband. So yes, she is married to a man.
Just imagine for a moment if her parents had decided to make her a boy at birth instead of a girl? Would she be a gay man? She is married to a man after all. Or, would “he” be transitioning into a “she?”
I can’t imagine having those kinds of problems?
It was during Gordon’s graduation from culinary school that I was in the bathroom when what looked like a man walked in. My first thoughts were to say, ‘this is the ladies room.’ It was then that it dawned on me that the “man” is probably a “woman” who wants to be a man but she is forced to use her ‘birth gender assignment’ bathroom. Anyway, “he” seemed harmless enough so I didn’t fear that “he” was in there to attack me or something like that? I then went on with my business. But, I can see how women or girls using that bathroom might become alarmed by a “man” just walking in? Yet, if people were allowed to use the bathroom of the sex they are transitioning into, then that makes more sense to me.
No one should be disqualified from receiving quality healthcare yet I live in a country that pretty much does it’s best to disqualify all of us. Even us so called “normal” people.
I know that J.K. Rowling got in trouble for her negative comments on the trans community. The actors in her Harry Potter movies even spoke out condemning her for those comments. That is when some supporters of Ms. Rowling’s then criticized all of the young actors and actresses as biting the hand that fed them. My comment on that? Those children made those movies interesting. Ms. Rowling needed them just as much as they needed her.
Besides, J.K. Rowling knows a thing or two about biting the hand that fed her.
Nancy Stouffer of Pennsylvania wrote a few children’s books called Larry Potter in the early 80’s. By the time J.K. Rowling wrote her Harry Potter, Ms. Stouffer’s books were out of print.
Nancy Stouffer from Pennsylvania
Sound familiar? Ms. Stouffer writes about Larry Potter who has brown hair and glasses. She writes about his best friend Lilly, she writes about Muggles….and something about a Nimbus 2000? I could go on but this is not the topic that I intended to write here. The sad truth is that once the Harry Potter book came out Ms. Stouffer noticed similarities to her books and that is when a team of 15 attorneys from the U.K. descended upon her to shut her up. They bullied her into silence because the Harry Potter franchise was just beginning and there was lots of money to be made. Disgusting!
I will say this about J.K. Rowling, she is a very talented writer and she did make those stories more interesting than Nancy Stouffer ever did. I’ve read a few books myself. Of course I know every movie by heart but I just wish that she had done something to make right, a wrong. As I understand it Ms. Stouffer just wanted the right to put her books back in circulation but was prevented from doing so by the J.K. Rowling team. Although now that all the J.K. Rowling team money has been made you can find Ms. Stouffer’s books for sale out there online now.
But, back to our topic at hand…..
The trans community exists and they aren’t going anywhere. They can’t help that they were born one way but exist another way. I don’t care to bully them, I don’t care to discriminate against them, and I don’t care to deny them of much needed healthcare. Just like the rest of us, they need a home to live and a job to work. They deserve those things just like the rest of us. The only time I ever agree with the anti-trans people is where competitive sports exists. A man in a wig is going to win most every time against a woman. That’s why we have men’s sports and women’s sports, and keep them separate. My husband is stronger than me and faster than me. There is no competition where psychical strength is concerned. He wins hands down!
I was sitting in my doctor’s office when I overheard a couple talking about a man they saw wearing a dress and they were a bit befuddled about it. That was when my name was called and as I stood up to head through the door to my appointment I just looked at them and said, “Don’t worry, we’ll all get used to it.” 🙂
And we will,
May 2, 2021
During our home renovations I came across this:
My Grandmother’s Friend Bunny O’Neill bought one of Princess Diana’s dresses from when she put them on sale by the advice of her son William. I really like the story because Diana just had too many clothes and she wondered what to do with all of them? That is when William suggested that she sell them. Brilliant idea! And so Diana did.
June 1997, two months before her death.
Bunny With Diana
I’m sorry, but as an Empath, all you have to do is look at Diana’s face to know how amused she is by Bunny. Probably because of her accent and very flirty southern ways. But, she is Not impressed at all.
Bunny is from Rome, Georgia. Bunny was my Grandmother’s friend.
I’m very happy that people are interested in Diana once more. She will now have her voice heard when it wasn’t prior to. I hear you Diana. I always did.
April 27, 2021
Lyin’ _Rian Landscaping LLC
The Front Yard Jungle
A Close Up Of Our Front Yard Jungle
Rocky The Squirrel (I just know it’s him.) 🙂
(A squirrel I rescued a few years ago from a fallen nest, took care of him, and then placed him and the nest back in the tree so that his mother would then get him. She did! Happy ending! That is Rocky’s tree and he let me get fairly close before the ran off.)
A few weeks ago Gordon and I were outside thinking about what to do with our landscaping? It’s overgrown, our yard men don’t do the work they used to, as in remove dead branches and palms, they just rape the yard of grass and then move on. They did used to do upkeep as well as mowing the grass. They no longer do that. So, it rests on us to take up the slack. Well, we are getting older and not so interested in all this hard work. As it is we take care and maintain our backyard ourselves, we just wanted professionals to do the front yard so that we didn’t have to worry about it because of our HOA, Home Owner’s Association. Well……
If your wondering why we don’t just get new yard guys then understand that I wonder that too sometimes? However, I think that is just what is out there. No one cares. No one takes pride in their work anymore. People just want to get paid a lot of money for a mediocre job. Most people around here complain about their workers. So, if we hire new people then perhaps we may get better, or we just may get worse. I am noticing a pattern in many areas in America where now that things are opening back up the services we all used to have whether it be healthcare, or lawncare, things just seem to be getting worse. America has been circling the drain since the G.W. Bush years but now I think that the aftermath of the pandemic is now pulling us down that drain. Unless radical changes are made in these next few years to really save America from itself then all the good times will be behind us with not much at all to look forward to.
Over The Top CUTZ Landscaping LLC
The company of Lyin’ _Rian. Obviously not his real name, nor is his company named “Over The Top CUTZ” but, I’ve changed the names to protect this Lyin’ _Rian asshole for some reason?
I hired Lyin’ _Rian to do a few landscaping jobs for me a few years ago when Gordon was working overseas. I thought he did a fairly decent job. I was never 100% happy with him and his crew but, I was about 80% happy and even then that was considered decent work? That is when I suggested that we call him to do a few jobs for us now so that we don’t have to do them. And, we can focus more on the creative side of the project and not the backbreaking parts.
He came out and gave us an estimate. Close to $3,000.00 for all the work we wanted him to do. Gordon objected to the amount of money he was asking to remove 2 of the white bird of paradise trees. You see, underneath the ground those trees have a bulb about 4 feet round that needs to be hacked out of there. Very difficult to remove which is why they withstand hurricane’s so well. Same with palm trees. They don’t really have roots like normal trees, they just have this big bulb that keeps on expanding.
Gordon asked him to clear a few more things for us and to keep the price the same and then we have a deal. Lyin’ _Rian agreed and told us the work would begin on Saturday the 17th. Great! We were happy to find out it would begin so soon. So, we awoke to a Saturday storm that lasted all day so Lyin’ _Rian emailed that they weren’t coming and that they would come on Monday. O.K. We understood, no one should be expected to work in those kinds of conditions and we then looked forward to Monday. We awoke to yet another day of drenching rain and storms. Again, Lyin’ _Rian emailed that they wouldn’t be coming that day and that they would come on Tuesday. O.K. So we awaited Tuesday with baited breath. Tuesday was also a soaker, so Lyin’ _Rian said they would come on Friday the 23rd. Fingers crossed that it would be nice! It was! I believe he called and said that he would be at our house after lunch. I didn’t like that he would be coming later on in the day but at this point we were willing to take any time he would give us.
(One thing that never made sense to me is why he was scheduling us on rainy days? You can look up your local weather and on The Weather Channel for an accurate update, and even an hourly update. I knew that Lyin’ _Rian would do that from the past jobs that I had hired him to do. He would even tell me the hour of a storm that was approaching and assuring me that they would be finished before the storm hit. So, why did he keep scheduling us for rainy days? Why wasn’t he checking for these weather updates like he used to? Or, perhaps he was and kept scheduling us on those days on purpose. But why? I had paid him in full when we agreed to a deal so our paying him wasn’t the problem, so what was?)
It must have been close to 2:00 p.m. when Lyin’ _Rian’s workers arrived. We were happy to have them here but they never got out of the truck until about 30 minutes later. We assumed they were waiting for Lyin’ _Rian to get here but he never came so they finally got out of the truck and started working. Gordon talked to them and got them set up because he wasn’t sure that they even knew what to do? They started working and then Lyin’ _Rian must have gotten here after 3:30 with our new massive Bismarck Palm Tree!!! Oh, I never told you, we wanted to replace all that jungle with a beautiful Bismarck Palm Tree and have it be the centerpiece of that side of the yard.
Cutting Down the White Bird of Paradise Trees
And replacing it with…..
A MASSIVE DUD!
Yep! That’s our “massive” Bismarck Palm Tree.
It’s the envy of the neighborhood. 🙁
THIS is what we paid for!
And THIS is what we got!
Oh, and I’m not even to the good part! Stay tuned!
On a ‘not so screwed over’ note: Lyin’ _Rian did managed to pick us up these Cranium’s.
They will go around our massive Bismarck Palm Dud. But WE will be planing them ourselves.
And I just remembered that we had to give him an extra $50.00 for these so I guess we were screwed over after all.
While Lyin’ _Rian’s crew were chopping up one of those bulbs underneath the ground Gordon came in and asked if we had internet? I said yes. He then asked about the phone? Yes, it works, why? Uh, because they just hacked through some cables outside. CABLES?? What cables? Everything seems to be working. That’s when I remembered that I think those must be the old telephone ables so it’s probably o.k. Whew! Gordon breathed a sigh of relief and went back outside.
15 minutes later……
Gordon: Uh, Julie? They just busted a sprinkler pipe.
Me: WHAT? Can they fix it?
Gordon: Yes, _Rian also works on sprinklers. We just need to pay him a $50.00 assessment fee and he will give us an estimate on the damage.
Me: (In really bold letters because this was me upset.)
WHAT??? He busted our pipe and now he wants $50.00 to tell us how much money he’s going to charge us to have it fixed for something that his team did????
I WILL FLUSH $50.00 DOWN THE TOILET BEFORE I WILL EVER GIVE IT TO LYIN’ _RIAN!
WE ARE CALLING SOMEONE ELSE!!!!
Allow me to explain to you something about Gordon. When faced with being conned he just cannot fathom that someone would/could do something like that to him so he refuses to see it. I’ve always said that I am married to Phil Dunphy from the hilarious T.V. show Modern Family. Phil is nice, talented, funny, a great husband and a great father and a great friend but when it comes to seeing people for what they really are, he just can’t see it. Or rather he just doesn’t want to.
Ty Burrell and Julie Bowen as Phil and Claire Dunphy
a.k.a. Gordon and Julie Whann
Yes, it’s true. I married a Phil. I also pretty much have that same expression on my face as Claire does most days. And Claire and I both drink a hell of a lot of wine too. 🙂
We also hired Lyin’ _Rian to remove the mess in our backyard “construction site” and level the area out, place one of those dark blackout plastics down on top of the dirt so that no weeds can grow up through it, and then stack everything back neatly as Gordon is planning on fencing in our construction site so that our backyard will look much nicer and we don’t have to stare at that mess all the time.
Here they moved the mess from that back corner in order to rip all that growth up.
Here Gordon is separating the block and cap stones that he can use to extend his retaining wall that he will be building soon in the backyard from the bamboo to the end of the old border blocks, which leads to the fence.
It was at this point when they left for the day last Friday and called it quits. They did tell us that they would be back on Monday. And they did come back. I’ll have to post those photos here in just a little bit but, they did manage to rip up all the old azalea’s in the C-shaped retaining wall. And they did stack things back in that back right corner.
We used to have grass back here until our yard guys ruined it all with their giant rider mowers and scattering rocks from our landscaping beds with their high powered blowers and weed eaters.
It now looks better. That back corner Gordon is going to fence in to hide all of that stuff and install a gate so that we have access to it. And you can see the border in front of my Magnolia Tree, Gordon will be replacing all those stones with a retaining wall so that it will look better all the way to the fence.
Underneath the Blue Tarp are things for the Retaining Walls Gordon is to Build
The fountain bottom came apart from the top so instead of stacking it correctly they just put her atop another piece of statuary and then left. Looks awful but…….
We do have plans to make this all look better. Some work by us and some other work by a company that does paving with bricks and blocks to create something fabulous for this area of our backyard. I’ve wanted this now for about 5 years and we are finally going to get it done from a company that we are very familiar with in our past who we believe will do a great job. Can’t wait to show you!
In the meantime, this is my backyard project for the week. Sprucing up the round retaining wall with some nice new Ape’s/Peace Lilies, and Fox Tail Ferns. Can’t wait!
If you are wondering what we are planning on doing to that area we had cleared in the front of our house then you will just have to stay tuned to find out. 🙂
Oh, and when Lyin _Rian came to finish up the landscaping job yesterday he didn’t touch the sprinkler that he can repair but doesn’t want to so needless to say we will never do business with him ever again. And now we’ve called in a sprinkler guy to fix it but until he gets here in about a week, we have no sprinkler to water outside. So, Gordon and I are having to drag out all the hoses and do it manually. Not fun at all! 🙂
Thanks Lyin _Rian. You have no honor. You are a prick.
We will make sure the entire neighborhood knows that.
P.S. I just thought of a great name for Lyin’ _Rian’s company, Extremist CUTZ. If you knew the real name you would think so too. 🙂
P.S.S. How dare he mess with a black woman! 🙂
April 26, 2021
P.S. I’m Black (I think.)
You know when you research your roots you find out things about yourself? I know that my ancestry on my mother’s side is Scotch/Irish. The Scottish men left Scotland and stopped off in Ireland to get a bride, and then migrated over to America. That is my mother’s side. My maternal Grandfather was adopted when he was young from a young mother and who knows who the father was except I do know that he had very dark skin and there was a large Greek population in Vincinnes, Indiana when he was born. My biological father’s side is a bit unknown to me. I do know that they were racists. Most likely slave owner’s who had sex/raped their slaves.
It was when we were living in Maryland, with a very large black population that I was sitting in a stadium full of people for my daughter’s football game, that was when Veronica and her high school band came in with their drums blaring that me and every black person in that stadium started jamming. I can jam with the best of them.
It was when I was moving like the rest of them that I realized that I was like them. It kind of explained my flat nose. Why I won every dance contest that I was ever in when I was in high school. I was very athletic in my youth, I could dance and even create dances that others would mimic in clubs. I think that I have always known that I have black blood in me and I need to embrace it and be proud of it.
Oh, my butt is flat as hell and I am o.k. with that. 🙂
I’m guessing that is the white part of me. Besides, I like my butt arriving at the same time that I do. So, a large butt in my opinion is a hindrance. But, that’s just me. 🙂
Anyway, embrace your ancestry and your own history and enjoy it.
I have been having a blast today updating my:
I have a few stories that I am adding if you would like to take a look. Scroll all the way to the bottom of that very long page to read new content. But, in the meantime, I will share with you a beginning excerpt.
April 20, 2021
The Steel Magnolia’s I Knew
Everyone has heard of the movie Steel Magnolias starring Dolly Parton, Julia Roberts, Sally Field, Daryl Hannah, Olympia Dukakis, Shirley Maclaine, and a great cast of others. It was a good movie. It came out in 1989 and it is a movie about a group of women in the south who are friends/nieghbors/coworkers and how their lives are intertwined with all their challenges. It’s also about the strength of these women. It is a comedy and a drama, although I prefer the laughter to the tears. Julia Roberts grew up in the Marietta/Smyra Georgia area not too far from my hometown of Rome.
Growing up in the south I can relate to a lot of the movie, except where guns are concerned. I didn’t grow up in a gun home. But, the lovely parties, weddings, and especially the Easter celebration at the end of the movie brings back beautiful memories for me. Also, the many visits to the Beauty Shop that I took with my grandmother bring back memories. Her lovely blue hair washed and styled and ready for that Church Suppuh, or the Ladies Fellowship Bible Study Group. And then there was always her Bridge Club once a week for all the ladies. Always a luncheon with punch/ice tea, and tea sandwiches.
I would usually hear from my grandmother, “Now Juleh, I don’t want you smokin’ while my guests are heuh.” To which I would promise not to although I do remember sticking my head out of the window many a time puffing away. 🙂
There were just certain behavior’s that were not excepted although they all did them. I can’t tell you how many “anti-smokers” I saw taking that drag on that cigarette while driving down the road, or behind the church before Sunday School started. Once I spotted one of the church ladies who would preach the evil of alcohol emerge from the liquor store carrying that bag of who knows what while nervously looking around to safely get to her car without hopefully being spotted.
One day when I was in Sevierville, Tennessee visiting friends, in the early 90’s, I stopped to get gas and decided to pick up a case of beer for the friends I would be staying with when I loudly heard the woman at the cash register who had apparently spotted me say into the microphone, “YOU CAIN’T BUY BEER ON SUNDEES, HUN!”
EVERYONE in that large mini mart stopped dead in their tracks to look at the SINNER who was tryin’ to buy up that Devil’s Brew on the Lord’s Day. I just remember being so embarrassed placing it back on the counter and the walk of shame to the register to pay for my gum and probably a pack of cigarettes. Because smoking is fine on Sunday’s for some reason. The tobacco industry probably had a hand in making it acceptable. After all, most of the Tennessee residents had a barn full of tobacco they were drying.
When I got to my friends house where I would be staying I told them what happened at the mini mart, thinking that they would find it silly when they just looked at me incredulously and both said at the same time, “You tried to buy beer own Sundee?”
The thing is that the women of the south always had to be perfect. Including myself. Hence, the sneaking around when it came to hiding our unacceptable habits. We had to look perfect, act perfect, always say the right thing and as sweetly as we could as if sugar were dripping off our chin’s.
So, With That In Mind,
I Would Like For You To Meet The Steel Magnolia’s That I Knew
(You know where to go to read the rest.)
P.S. I quit smoking when I was 38 so I am not condoning smoking. Just so ya know.
April 10, 2021
My Website’s “Under Construction” Posts
I am always asked why I always have posts that are “under construction” and why don’t I just debut them when I have finished the write up’s? Well, that is because I have always had a cyber-stalker who would tamper and sabotage my work. You see, my cyber-stalker was a very sophisticated and knowledgeable cyber stalker. While I would be working on a post, he could access my development and erase all that I had done, EXCEPT, when I had already published the content. Only then could by web hosting company retrieve all that I had done. So, it is just out of habit that I work on my website right in front of you. AND, that it is easier to retrieve whatever content that Paul Gray had erased. That’s why.
April 9, 2021
I just updated an old post with some late 80’s photos:
Me with Baby Veronica and my Little Brother Ben
Julie, Mary Keith and Nell, The Hosts
Florence, Ellisha, Judith Ann, and Lisa
Lisa’s Engagement Bridal Shower
Veronica and I had flown home one Easter in 1988 when we were living in Hawaii for a visit with the family, and for this bridal shower.
My parents were living in downtown Rome, Georgia at the time in the historic district. It was quite a lovely home. Just reliving a few nice memories.
All three women, Elissha, Lisa, and Judith Ann, were homecoming queens at Rome High School. I’m pretty sure that is what will be on their tombstones. 🙂
April 7, 2021
Let’s Go Up To The Attic
(I want to find Veronica’s little Easter collectibles and give those to her this year. I think she will love to have them and add them to her Easter collection.)
That was the plan so, off to the attic we go!
As we climb up the stairs, turn on the attic light…..
Oh, I wonder if Brodie and Mackenzie might like this lamp for their new place?
I’ll ask them.
The Giant Snakes
(Let’s just step over these to get to the back of the attic.)
Kinda Looks Like Snow, Huh?
Oh! I remember that urn.
I wonder if Brodie and Mackenzie might want it for their new place?
Ooooo Hawaiian Stuff! 🙂
Take this box down Gordon!!
There’s Brodie’s weight bench and, our old table from Hawaii.
Do we still have the glass to it? Oh, good!
I See Barbie’s!!!
And lot’s of luggage. Oh, I want Grandma Nell’s Blue Samsonite! And her train case!
Oh, I remember that green thing! You know that would be pretty recovered. Wonder if Veronica or Brodie might want it? Let’s ask them?
Looky, Looky What I found!
It’s Buffy!!!! (The Vampire Slayer)
(And Charmed Paperbacks)
I remember when Buffy first came out on T.V. We were living in Hawaii and we didn’t have the WB Channel to watch it but I had heard and read a lot about the show. It was when we were on vacation in Rome, Georgia one summer that I tried to get Veronica to watch it. I told her that there is this new show on T.V. called Buffy the Vampire Slayer. I told her that I think she will really like it. I hear that it is a great show!
That is when Veronica rolled her eyes and said, “Buffy? Vampire Slayer? Seriously, Mom?” Along with more major eye rolls.
It wasn’t until that Christmas that Veronica told me that she wanted “Buffy stuff” for Christmas. I then had the best time of my life asking, “Buffy stuff? What Buffy stuff? You don’t mean that Buffy The Vampire Slayer, do you? That vampire show on T.V.? Surely not! I mean as much as you pooh-poohed it last summer? No! I can’t believe it! As opposed to it as you were? No! I don’t believe it!!! 🙂
Well, she went from not wanting anything to do with her to owning many paperbacks, school calendars, comic books, wall calendars, photo stills, action figures that are MIB, and countless memorabilia.
I gathered up all of her Buffy things that I found so far……
and put them in a box for her to do with as she pleases.
Young teen Veronica, and some of her Buffy Drawings
Angel on a Dollar Bill, and the High School Yearbook for Buffy and the Gang
Buffy and Faith Action Figures
The Coconut Veronica Painted of Buffy and the Cast
(I did mention that we were living in Hawaii at the time, right?)
And, let’s not forget the Beannie Babies
Happy to be rid of these! 🙂
Trying to downsize in my senior years. Really! 🙂
April 4, 2021
March 21, 2021
Visiting Brodie and Mackenzie’s New Apartment
Gordon and I in the Gazebo at Their Dog Park
The Trunk is Loaded With Housewarming Gifts
Decades ago I read something that Dolly Parton had said about how she would rather buy 200 things for $1.00 each as opposed to spending $200.00 on 1 thing. I could immediately relate to that quote. ME TOO! I can play and have more fun with 200 things than I can 1.
Which is why when it came to putting this housewarming gift together for Brodie and Mackenzie I wanted to give them many things that they can use as opposed to 1 thing they can stare at.
It’s also important for me to give them things that they like, things that they want, and things that I want to give to them. I like giving a gift that I enjoy as well.
Makings for Hawaiian Chili Cheese Rice
(Short grain Calrose Rice, Darn Good Chili packets, and cans of goodies to extend the life of each package.)
During lockdown Mackenzie stayed here with us and one night I made a big pot of chili. She loved it! So, I decided to give her all the ingredients that it takes to make it, times 2. And, to give them a big pot to cook it in as well. Lo and behold, they didn’t even have a pot so that was a good purchase.
Even though Brodie does a lot of the cooking, it’s still pretty much a woman’s kitchen. At least when it comes to colors and the set up of it all. With that in mind….
…Mackenzie had told me that she was interested in colors of Blue and Green so Gordon and I set about choosing some things for them with her colors in mind.
Place Mats, Colander’s, Mixing Bowls, and the Cutting Board with Brodie in mind.
Helping to Stock the Pantry
Starting a kitchen from scratch for a young couple moving into their first place together can be costly. Especially for foodies. So, we wanted to help them to stock up their pantry with some of ours/their favorite sauces. Hoisin Sauce, Aloha Shoyu, Olive Oil, Mirin, Rice Vinegar, Sweet Baby Ray’s BBQ sauce, Sesame Seeds, AND, some of our Bacon Grease. 🙂
And a lighter for the grill at the pool where I know Brodie and Mackenzie will be cooking out now and then.
Gordon Checking out the Grill at the Pool
Blue and Green Accessories
Dish Towels, Oven Mits, Measuring Spoons and Cups, Cooking Spoons and Storage Containers.
More Sauces, Wooden Spoons, Rice Crackers, Eel Sauce, Wasabi Peas…..
A Hawaii Childhood Favorite of Brodie and Veronica
(Always add a sweet treat.)
When it came to transporting all of this over to their house I wanted to place everything into a container that they can keep and use and have it be part of the gift as well. Hence, this storage container.
Some things wrapped, some things not, and lots of colorful tissue paper.
Don’t forget the Ape (Peace Lily) in a pretty pot.
I like putting a flower or two, or even a plant in with a gift like this because it represents putting down roots. A plant is more of a commitment whereas flowers are not. They represent something beautiful and temporary. The Ape is an easy plant to take care of. It doesn’t require sunlight to be beautiful and bloom.
Brodie and Mackenzie Looking Through Their Gifts
In Their Kitchen
I love their kitchen! It’s so pretty and clean and fresh and new.
Although hard to see, there is a bird in a nest with her babies and she is feeding one of them in that lovely gnarly tree. I love that Brodie and Mackenzie are very excited about it and enjoy watching the progress.
Making Myself Right at Home
The View From Their Lanai
This is such a beautiful gated community with 2 man made lakes, fountains, lots of walking paths all around the area, with many people walking their dogs. A lot of thought went into designing this community. They have created an eco-system and sanctuary for all the wildlife to live here and thrive.
At Their Dog Park Taking Lots of Photos
Gazebo at the Dog Park
The Club House and Pool
This is Like a Resort
Love the HUGE Lake!
The Club House
Settling in Outside the Club House
We had such a great visit with them. So glad to see that they are doing well and starting their lives together. It’s nice for us to look at our children and see them doing well. Making wise decisions. Being responsible. Growing up. We are very lucky that we have our children in our lives and that they turned out to be such good people and chose really wonderful partners that we love and care for.
March 9, 2021
In The Backyard
(Worst lighting in the world!) 🙁
So, how is everyone doing? What’s up with you guys? And what do you think about the whole Meghan and Harry interview? Huh? Were you shocked? Surprised? Saddened? Angered?
To those people like me none of it surprised me. I recognized and wrote about her abuse in that palace atmosphere years ago. And Didn’t Diana first expose it all decades ago?
Why should any of it surprise any of us? In a Class System with Kings/Queens/Prince’s/Princess’s/Dukes/Earls/Lords/Lady’s/ and the so called Honorable’s? They outright designate themselves as being better than everyone else and the public at large just goes along with it. (You always need sheep to manipulate and follow you otherwise you can’t get away with anything.)
Exactly how can you promote a society of equality when you designate some people as being better and more important than others?
I suppose that our celebrities or our generational political families can be seen as our Royal Families, yet they aren’t. Celebrities like Dolly Parton and George Clooney use their celebrity to help people and bring attention to suffering whether here in America or around the world. But, I don’t pay to support either of them to keep them in their lifestyles. I may donate money to their causes because I believe in them but that is my choice.
As far as our political families go, our tax dollars do support our Executive Branch, our Legislative Branch, and our Judicial Branches of our government but it is their job to serve us. At least that is how it is supposed to be. Sometimes we have good government, other times we don’t. However, the British people are stuck with their Royals for life. We aren’t. That is the difference.
I was really surprised at how harsh the British public was to Harry and Meghan but when I hear about how the Royals have a relationship with the tabloids then it makes sense. Meghan called it correctly, the tabloids don’t report the news they create the news. (She said something to that effect, don’t quote me.)
Life is hard enough for the average person, I can only imagine what those in the spotlight go through whether Royal, or Celebrity, or Political.
I am guessing that the reason we think so differently from the British is that America is a more open society and Britain is more of a ‘sweep it under the rug’ kind of society. I do admit that American’s are over sharer’s. I myself overshare. But where abuse is concerned, when you keep quiet about it then you are protecting the abuser. Meghan was exposing the toxic environment of a British Institution. The Firm and The Family. Do you want a racist as King? No? Well, you don’t have a choice do you? WE DO! And we said NO to our racist President. You can’t. That’s what monarchy is. You get your racist until he dies. We voted ours out.
When our lovely American Meghan Markle married into the Royal Family I guess we had hopes that she and Harry could do some good while in that family. The African-American community was so happy to see one of their own in the oldest family in the world. They finally had their very own Princess and they were so happy about that. Only to find out that she was mistreated, abused, and pretty much pushed out of that family. I cannot believe that the Royals would be so cruel as to cut Harry off where his security for himself and his family are concerned. They of all people should understand how important that is. I can’t imagine cutting my children off to fend for themselves where kidnapping and death threats are concerned. But then again, I love my children and their partners and my future unborn grandchildren.
Because Meghan married a Prince she wants for her children the same thing that the others in the Royal Family get. There is nothing wrong with that. Speaking out is her way of protecting her child Archie and her unborn child. It is their heritage. She is exposing the truth. Does that make me a hypocrite for agreeing that Archie should receive what he is entitled to from a Royal Family that I am dissing? Yes and No. To me a Royal Family is outdated and should be abolished. However, because Archie was born into the family by a father who is a Prince, he should receive what he is entitled to. It is only fair.
As for any future children born into an abolished monarchy, well, then no, there is nothing for you.
The only thing I have ever loved about a Royal Family are their weddings. They are fairy tale! However, if I never see another one again I’m pretty sure I’ll live. So will you.
You know, I never meant to write this much about the Royal Family. I just wanted to tell you that Brodie and Mackenzie have their own place now. Not too far from us. Yea!!! And that Mackenzie found a great job. Yea!!! And that Veronica and Brian are doing good. Yea!!! And that Gordon and I are fine and doing well. Yea!!!
March 8, 2021
Harry and Meghan’s March 7, 2021 Oprah Interview
Harry and Meghan Talk to Oprah About “Megzit”
If any of you know me well then you know that I am going to write something about this interview. I was such a fan of the late Princess Diana and I have of course, followed her children and their upbringing, university life, relationships, marriages, births, etc., and without really even trying. The information is just out there whether you look for it or not. However, Harry and Meghan have been of interest to me. I was so impressed with the first interview that I saw of her when she and Harry were speaking on their engagement and upcoming wedding. I was impressed! She was no dummy. She isn’t just a pretty face. She is smart, intelligent, interesting, talented, nice, considerate, kind, and so on, and so on….
Harry and Meghan Engagement Interview November 27, 2017
I can remember watching this interview and falling in love with the two of them. I was so impressed with how intelligent that Meghan was. How well she came across. She commanded the interview while sharing with Harry and bringing him into the conversation all at the same time. And what I noticed of Harry is that he was a much more mature young man than I remember seeing in the news all those years. Meghan can carry her own in an interview that many would be very shy about. Think back to Diana in the early years. And even Kate when she became engaged to William. Neither one was the outgoing personality that Meghan is. But, Meghan is a bit older and wiser than Diana and Kate were. Plus, Meghan had been living on her own, creating her own celebrity and supporting herself before she met Harry. She created her own success. But, then she met her Prince Charming and fell in love. They are a couple that are in love with each other. They are committed to each other, Archie, their unborn child, their dogs, their causes, the environment and up until they were forced into the “Megzit,” they were committed to their patronages.
I always knew that Meghan wanted a role in that family and was willing to do anything to support her husband, the Royal Family, and help people in the process. And also, Meghan does like the spotlight. She just wants it honest and fair.
There is nothing wrong with enjoying the spotlight. There is nothing wrong with enjoying getting all fixed up with nice clothes and full hair and make-up to attend an important event where she would give a speech acknowledging and bringing attention to an organization or a cause.
I think it’s sad that when Kate does that she is recognized as being sincere and hard working, yet when Meghan does that she is seen as greedy and out of place, and a ‘who does she think she is’ kind of an attitude. Let’s all criticize her jewelry and the cost of her clothing and those earrings she is wearing. I did know that Meghan was too smart for the Royal Family. They don’t want smart women. They want women they can control. They could not control Diana. Diana wasn’t necessarily intelligent, she was an Empath. She knew things because she could read feelings and not necessarily figure things out. They like Kate because they can control her. Kate knows how to play the game.
Barefoot in California with Harry and Meghan 🙂
Pregnant with baby Veronica. (I made that up. I just hope they name her Veronica.)
(They are very welcome to copy my website name. I don’t mind! I would consider it an honor.)
I do have to say that the accusations former employees of Meghan and Harry are making against her as being a bully is so unbelievably laughable! Bully’s are not loner’s. They are not brave. They are cowards. They call on their supporters to back them up as they go on the attack of whomever they want to go after.
Meghan was mostly alone over in England. She had no supporters in that family. You know that marrying into the most famous family in the world is intimidating. No one, especially a foreigner is going to join that family and start bullying people around. Oh, NO! You will want to be excepted, supported, liked, loved, you want to be part of the family. You want to be accepted but you also want to be able to be yourself. So, how sad that Meghan was told to be 50% less than she was. That is disgusting. It’s like being told to build something with both hands tied behind your back. And why would anyone want to be less than they were born to be?
I do like that Harry and Meghan are acknowledging the kinds of things that Diana went through in the family. Married to that awful Charles and being bullied by the Royal Family and The Firm.
Harry, Meghan Pregnant, and Little Archie
(I read that all of these “black and white” photos with grey tones are intentional. They are a black and white family creating grey children. But, not in a boring grey way. In a melding grey way.)
Kate Made Meghan Cry
Princess Charlotte and The Duchess of Cambridge
Harry and Meghan’s Wedding Day, May 19, 2018
I remember the original story of how Meghan made Kate cry over the bridesmaid’s wearing tights on the wedding day? That never held water for me, if that was indeed what the argument was about. It’s the bride that tends to be emotional around the wedding, not the participants. After all, we want things to be perfect on our big day. I can remember crying and getting upset because my brother Johnny never asked off from work when he was working at McDonald’s in Rockingham, North Carolina and couldn’t be a groomsman in our wedding. (I found out from my other brother that he just didn’t want to come to my wedding so he made that up. Luckily, we found someone to take his place.) But, I was very hurt by that because I wanted him there. So, I knew it wasn’t Meghan that made Kate cry. That just never made sense to me. Meghan is not an unreasonable person. She listens and wants to find a solution that everyone accepts.
I would like to state that Kate, The Duchess of Cambridge does carry out her duties to her country and her family, and her Queen, with honor, dedication and integrity. But, that doesn’t mean that she isn’t a bully that has no problem hurting those that she deems worthy of her wrath.
I found it very interesting that on the wedding day when the reverend and the black choir was singing that Kate shot Camilla this look. It was a look of disapproval, of prejudice, of racism. I will never forget it. It was the look of every mean girl/boy/man/woman that I have ever known in my life. That same posture. That, is the future Queen of England.
You can have her.
P.S. We’re the lucky ones! We get Harry, Meghan, Archie and little Veronica 🙂
February 24, 2021
Texas and Tiger Woods
(Exactly why should we feel sorry for either one?)
I realize that I am coming across as a bit harsh and rather heartless. I would like to state that I always feel for the suffering of children and animals. It’s most adults and their selfishness where my empathy ends and does not extend to them. I would like to start with Tiger Woods.
When I first heard of the accident my thoughts went to him in the hope that he would be alright. Hearing that no one was in the vehicle but him was a bit of good news because he does have 2 children. Other thoughts that I had were on how did this even happen? Did someone run him off the road? After all, the accident occurred at 7:12 a.m. I knew that alcohol probably didn’t play a role in the crash as most people aren’t drinking that early in the morning. But, just looking at the extent of the damage done to the automobile, hearing how extreme the wreck was, and learning that he had to be cut out of the car, it just brought to mind some sort of other automobile that just had to be involved but fled the scene?
Only to learn that Mr. Woods was the only car involved and that he just lost control of the vehicle because he was speeding to meet up with his football buddies for some Golf T.V thing. Really? So all of this is because he was running late and in a hurry? Do you know that he could have seriously injured or killed others on the road that morning?
The man is in his mid 40’s with 2 children and if I remember correctly doesn’t he have a fiance?
Tiger Woods has a long history of recklessness. Reckless behind the car and reckless in his personal life.
So what if he is the greatest golfer in the world? He is a danger to himself, his family, and to anyone that he may encounter on the road because he is a reckless person. I don’t feel sorry for people like him. I feel sorry for the people that may encounter him. It’s one thing to be reckless in our youth, it’s another to be reckless in middle age at a time when he should have learned a thing or two from his past mistakes.
If I were his ex-wife Elin I would from now on insist that he be barred from driving his children anywhere in the future. He is too much of a danger to them.
(Everything is bigger in Texas, even their disasters by design.)
Now comes the controversy where my opinions should net me a lot of hatred coming my way. Well, then so be it. You see, I know quite a bit about Texas and the people thereof, especially their mindset.
My step-father, the man who raised me from the age of 7 when he married my mother, up until the day he died in 2013 was born and raised in Texas. Pecan Gap/Ben Franklin area. He was my “father” for 44 years and the man who has done the most damage to me in life. He also brought with him into the marriage a son, my step-brother, who also is one of the most horrid human beings I have ever known in my life. He lives in Texas still and is a proud as punch republican who adores the likes of Karl Rove, George W. Bush, Ted Cruz, and I’d bet my life he voted for Trump in 2016 and 2020. So, need I say more about him?
My step-father’s family that are all still out there scattered throughout Texas are pretty rotten on their own. Whether from personal experiences or from all the gossip I’ve heard about them and all from one of their own. The point that I am trying to reach is that a large portion of the people of Texas don’t have a problem with concentration camps being on their borders. They don’t have a problem taking children away from their parents and relocating those children to other people around the country without worry if they are o.k. or not? They also don’t have a problem inflicting their religious beliefs on others where health issues are concerned. Whether that be birth control or abortion. Those are the kinds of people that live in Texas. These Texans do not have a problem denying people they don’t like healthcare, or basic living wages, or simple respect. They don’t believe in charity or helping others. The only people they believe in helping is themselves. I really could go on and on and on….. but I don’t want to.
Oh, and let’s not forget how the “pro-lifer’s” that they are love their wars, guns, and the death penalty. Super fun!
Just 2 weeks prior to the big storm they, the politician’s and the people of Texas were all talking about secession. Well, well, well. What do they do when they need help? Turn to government to help them. Well Texas, the way you have your energy system set up is nothing that Biden and the rest of America can help you with. You chose that system yourselves because your favorite son’s George W. Bush and Kenny Boy Lay set it up that way. Oh and Ken Lay was responsible for the collapse of ENRON. Funny that W. went from calling him Kenny Boy, to Mr. Lay. Cute! Oh, and Kenny Boy died shortly after the collapse of ENRON when the government was closing in on him.
Texas has bragged about the fact that they don’t like helping people. For decades now! So, now that they need help, because of pretty much what they have done to themselves, we are all supposed to stop what we are doing and help them? Sorry, the mean girl in me, who has been a victim of quite a few rotten Texan’s, finally say’s “I’m done with you. Whatever happens, happens.”
When they are ready to sit at the adult table and act like adults then I will welcome them back. But, not until then. They have done way too much damage to way too many people.
I would like to say this to those good people of Texas:
I sympathize with you. I want you and your families and pets to be o.k. I am rooting for you and I am on your side. I too live in a red state filled with some pretty rotten people so I understand your pain. The same thing you are going through can very easily happen to us in the form of a hurricane. And when people across the country turn against us here in Florida? Well, then my state will deserve it. Sadly.
I don’t have the answers to all of our problems but I do know that we need to shun the ways that don’t work, and support the ways that do. Shun the people that don’t work, like Ted Cruz, and welcome and support the people that do, like Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, who raised money for Texas while Ted Fled to Cancun, Mexico.
Do you want to live? Then quit voting for republican’s.
P.S. Have you noticed that there haven’t been a lot of offers to help Texas? Whether it be from around the world or in our own country? Guess no one really cares about Texas anymore. Texas only has itself to blame for that.
(I have that dress and that blanket.) 🙂
Turning 60 on February 13, 2021
February 6, 2021
And Why Can’t I Be Happy About Turning 60?
The photos that you see above were taken one week before my actual birthday. I knew that I wanted to spend turning 60 canoeing in alligator infested waters on my big day. But, I do love choosing a nice birthday menu and having Gordon make it for me. Which is why you see me above happy and twirling that I get good food and gifts prior to my gator swamp trip. And why can’t I twirl at 60?
February 13, 2021
Canoeing on Hillsborough River, Thonotosassa, Florida
Brodie and Mackenzie came with us. Veronica and Brian were invited but Brain had to work and couldn’t switch shifts with any coworkers, and Veronica didn’t want to come without Brian to protect her. 🙂
Me, Gordon, Brodie and Mackenzie
We only saw about 4 canoe/kayak’s the entire time. It was wonderful! All that beauty just for us! I could not have asked for a better birthday. Plus, I got to sit back and take photos of it all which is all that I wanted to do anyway. 🙂
Al E. Gator
We must have seen about 35 alligator’s. Most of the gator’s we saw were from small to medium in size. We were told that they do have some 10 – 12 foot gator’s but we didn’t see any of those.
It was just so peaceful and tranquil. I started a new post specifically for this trip and I can’t wait to work on it. So I will wait to fill you in on all the details, but it truly was a wonderful trip.
One of the many gator’s we saw.
Being out in the raw nature of Florida you really are transported back to some primeval era that just seemed to exist long before I did. I’m just happy that I got to be a part of it on my special day.
ON TURNING 60
So, How Do I Feel About It?
When I think back over the years to all of my birthdays there are a few that stand out the most.
Some happy, some sad.
L to R: Edith, Shannon, Monica, Me, Anne Catherine, Donna, and Joanie
Me, in the back on the left with the red pants. It is my 9th. birthday and we are living in Dahlonega, Georgia. I had the best friends there. I was looking for my 10th. birthday photos in Dahlonega but I can’t find them right now. But I did come across this photo. I do remember those Dahlonega one’s as being the best birthday’s. Probably because I had really good friends that liked me and that I liked in return. That makes a difference.
One of my saddest birthday’s was moving to Roanoke, Virginia and being the new kid in school. Roanoke at the time was not very friendly to newcomers. When my 5th. grade birthday rolled around I invited about 12 girls to my party and only 2 showed up. And even then I think they only showed up because their parents made them come.
Birthday’s to me are bitter sweet. Life is bitter sweet. But, life is also what we make of it. So, instead of waiting around for someone to plan my birthday at any given age, I started planning them myself. I stated that THIS is what I want to do for my birthday. And, everyone got onboard. It’s been that way now for many years and I have had the best birthday’s because of it. 🙂 Sometimes I think we need to just take charge of our own lives and make them what we want them to be.
At this writing I feel good. I don’t seem to have the aches and pains that other’s have. Living in Florida probably has something to do with it. I have yet to experience any arthritis or joint pain. I am able to all that I have been doing now for years. I do notice that I am getting older looking when I look in my bathroom mirror, but that is understandable. I AM getting older.
I have no idea what my future holds but I plan on enjoying it as long as I can.
My Pistachio Birthday Muffins
Happy Birthday to ME!
January 30, 2021
Happy Birthday Lola
(Finally, something nice and fun to write about.)
My niece in Ireland turned 17 on January 28th.
Her step-mother Sabina made the cake. Sabina is so talented. I love the little Covid between the 20 and the 21 in the photo above left. Some people may be critical of that but life reflects art and creative people will always incorporate life into their art. Covid is with us everyday and we are lucky to have birthday’s in this age of Covid.
Lola and Vivien
Vivien is Apparently the Comic Relief 🙂
Lola and Kate Playing a Game
Kate Jude, my Oldest Niece in Ireland
You would never know the 3 girls are sisters. I asked my brother how in the world he had such gorgeous daughters? He did go through the spectrum of having a blonde, brunette and a red head as his daughters. 🙂
Sometimes I wish they lived here but actually I’m glad they are over there in Ireland. America isn’t the country it used to be and I think they are much better off living in Europe.
I love and miss all of you!
January 23, 2021
Thank Goodness It’s Over!
I think I held my breath all day, that day.
Check out that Biden family Bible Jill is holding. 🙂
Now that the 2021 Presidential Inauguration of Joseph Robinette Biden, Jr. (Robinette?)
Vice President Kamala Harris…
…is officially over. I think that most of their supporters have since breathed a big sigh of relief. WHEW!
We’ve had a few days just to drink everything in and I just can’t get over how quickly the two of them have hit the ground running. That was something that Obama should have done when he got in there in 2008. Oh, I love the Obama’s, but, he didn’t do all that he should have done and I do believe that had he done more things we wouldn’t have gotten so out of hand in our country that led up to a Trump in the White House. Those dangerous republican’s should have been reigned in a long time ago.
I did love that all the significant women wore shades of purple and some blue.
A Show of Unity
But also, I believe, to represent the many colors of our Democratic Party.
The Biden Granddaughters
Although I didn’t watch the entire 4 nights of The Democratic National Convention in 2020, I did watch the last 2 nights and on one of those nights all 4 of the Biden granddaughter’s were interviewed. That interview was the highlight for me. They were so cute and funny and just normal young women talking about their grandfather. Oh, they didn’t sing his praises. They talked about how annoying he was because he would always call them to check up on them. They also talked about how he would sneak ice cream out of the freezer and he would try and hide it. 🙂 (Jill must monitor his sweets habits.)
I can’t imagine Donald Trump allowing any of his children or grand-children to say anything about him that didn’t make him out to be a god. The Biden’s are real, the Trump’s are plastic. I happen to like “real.”
The Biden’s Walking
(This was also a highlight for me. Seeing the granddaughters again, walking behind their grandfather and being so proud of him. Talking, laughing and giggling just like young women do. I loved it!)
As you know I was not for Joe Biden. I was more of a Bernie fan. However, I am for anyone that will conduct the business of the people and if Joe does that, then more power to him. Personally, I happen to think he is too old. (Same with Bernie. But Bernie wanted to erase student debt.) The job of President of the United States in good times seems to age our leaders. But, here we are in exceptional times. I just hope he gets through it and survives it all. I also hope that our Vice President will be there to take up the slack. They are another family that I am enamored with at the moment.
The Harris Emhoff Family
I adore Kamala. I wish her all the best and I am rooting for her to succeed in her endeavor to be a good Vice-President.
I know she wants change but she will also encounter ‘powers that be’ that don’t. That will be very frustrating for her.
I love the relationship that she has with her husband, and his children from a previous marriage.
Kamala (Momala) with her Step-Children, Cole and Ella
It says a lot that they love her as much as they do. It also says a lot about their biological mother, Kersten Emhoff, Doug Emhoff’s ex-wife. I can’t tell you how many women that I know that would do their best to sabotage a good relationship between her children and the new wife. I know that my former sister-in-law in Ireland will always be there to sabotage 2 of my niece’s minds into making sure they don’t like us here in America. I believe that is because Cathy is very insecure. Same with my half-sister’s mother, Dot. She never wanted her daughter’s to like me because I was just too liberal for them and that threatened her hold over them. Or so she thought.
I do so love these two great families and all that they can bring to benefit our country. I am very worried about them though.
I have a thought on Joe Biden that I would like to share that may be a bit unpopular for me to say, but I am going to say it anyway. I believe that the reason that he was able to move forward from the death of his first wife Neilia, and baby daughter Naomi, from a car wreck that killed them both, and severely injured his 2 surviving boys in the automobile, is because he was able to replace them. Before you get mad at me hear me out.
His first wife Neilia Hunter Biden
Wasn’t She Lovely?
(She would have made a beautiful First Lady.)
The Biden Family
It breaks my heart that Neilia was out shopping for a Christmas tree with her children, Beau, Hunter and Naomi when a tractor trailer slammed into their car killing Neilia and Naomi.
Joe was heartbroken that he lost his wife and his daughter, but then along came Jill. She was a wonderful woman that loved Joe and his 2 boys. They got married, she became a mother to Beau and Hunter, and then had Ashley. So, Joe was able to replace his lovely wife and daughter that he lost, with another lovely wife and daughter.
I’m not saying that he didn’t love the wife and daughter that he lost. I am simply pointing out that we only miss those that we cannot replace.
A lot of people would not be able to get over what Joe Biden got over. That loss would have held quite a few people back in life. I know that something that tragic would have held me back. Yet, Joe was able to go on to continue to occupy his Senate Seat. Then going on to be Vice-President to Barack Obama, and then go on to be President of the United States of America.
If I were to loose Gordon I would be devastated. Yet, If I could replace him with a Gordon 2.0 then my loss would not be as great. I would still miss him but the loss would not be as devastating to me if I could find another one just like him.
Joe Biden is probably the luckiest man in the world that he was able to find 2 wonderful and lovely wives while most of us are lucky to just find one.
My favorite Biden is Maisie, 3rd. from left. I love her Valentine dress. At least that’s what it is to me. I also love her antique name, Maisie.
The Inauguration Day was beautiful! I’m glad we all had our social distancing celebrations and festivities.
I can’t help but wonder that if the terrorist attacks of January 6, 2021 hadn’t happened would Joe Biden still be alive?
January 6, exposed the lot of insurrectionist’s in our country and what they are capable of. It also exposed the Capital police and their role in helping them. It also exposed our own lawmakers and their role in aiding the terrorists in their attack on our Capital building and our democracy. But, what if none of that had happened? Would some lone Trump loyalist have pulled that trigger at the Inauguration and we wouldn’t have a President Biden right now?
Last year I predicted that Joe Biden would win the Presidency but that he would never be President. Apparently, I was happily wrong! I don’t know everything. Sometimes things change, that end up changing the picture. I was right about the terrorists though. I was right about the threat. I don’t know how things will end. I just don’t see it right now. But I do know to be cautious.
Until republican’s are made to be accountable for their role in trying to thwart our democracy, and in endangering our democratic lawmakers, then they are still a threat. They need to be held accountable. They need to experience jail time. They need to lose their jobs. The democrats can no longer sweep the bad behavior of republican’s underneath the rug. They need to be arrested and face trial for their crimes. Please, do it for our democracy that you claim to uphold.
January 10, 2021
There is a Blueprint for Everything
There is a blueprint for invading a country. There is a blueprint for taking over a country. There is a blueprint for getting a populace to go along with a war, and in starting a war. (Which always involves a terrorist attack of some kind. The people must be afraid in order for the government to be able to control them.) There is a blueprint for discrediting or slandering a person or a business/corporation/country, etc. etc.
There is ALWAYS a Blueprint
The bad people will always be there to follow the blueprint and it’s up to the good people to recognize the blueprint when they see it and try their best to stop it.
What happened on January 6, 2021 will live in infamy. And what I find so unbelievable is that for the first time in my life I don’t have a problem convincing other people that this was an inside job done by the President of the United States and his supporters, inside and outside of the Capital Building. I don’t have people thinking I’m crazy for daring to suggest such a thing. I haven’t been told how paranoid that I am, or that I need to just get a life and quit worrying about such nonsense. I also haven’t been called ‘un-American and un-Patriotic.’ This is new for me. I’m not used to other people knowing what’s going on in our own country or the world. And as happy as that does make me feel. I’m also saddened because I liked being in that top group that was aware and educated in the going’s on while everyone else was ignorant of facts and figures.
But, as happy as I truly am that finally the American people are awake and becoming aware of our government and the republican party for their role in how we got here, is there really anything that can be done about it? I mean, when something finally becomes obvious to the people then it’s too late to do anything about it. The time to squash it is before it gets to this point.
It’s funny but there are a few people that know that I predicted this at Trump’s Inauguration on January 20, 2017 and are now looking to me as to what we do next? My answer is that I don’t really know? I’m into prevention, not reaction. I try to prevent bad things from happening. But when the bad thing happens then it’s kind of out of my hands.
I’m happy that American’s are realizing that it is important to participate in our country’s democracy, otherwise we might lose it. Like what’s happening right now. But when Trump has the support of almost 75 million people, and Biden has the support of about 82 million, we are a country of 330 million so most of the rest that didn’t vote are children, and illegals and the incarcerated. We may outnumber the Trump supporters by a few million but it isn’t enough to snuff them all out. They are going to be around for a long time. (Unless Covid kills them from their ignorance and lack of taking the virus seriously.)
The thing about the pro-Trump supporters are that they are a cult and cult members will tend to die for their cult leader and do whatever terrible things their cult leader asks of them. All you have to look at is what happened last Wednesday.
Those 82 million of us that voted for Biden tend to approach things differently. We may get angry and upset but we handle things a bit differently than they do. We write letters, we vote, we speak out, and might I suggest that we now SHUN!
Unless you would like to go toe-to-toe with them and prefer some non-violent ways in snuffing them out, then I would like to offer up a suggestion that we just try shunning them. You know that Trump supporting neighbor that you are friendly with ‘just to be neighborly?’ Well, quit being neighborly. You know that rotten step-brother of yours that sends out all that pro-Trump baloney that you follow on Facebook just to be nice? UN-FOLLOW HIM!
Don’t allow them into the mainstream. They don’t belong with us.
I believe in freedom of speech, but I do not believe in freedom of hate speech.
If you think that by still knowing them that some of your good qualities might rub off on them, then you are stupid. You are not dealing with a rational person. You are dealing with a cult member. And besides, if they can’t convince you of their belief then why do you think they will listen to you?
One reason that we are at this point in our history is because there were so many American people that just went along, choosing ignorance over knowledge. Not getting involved in politics because it’s just so unpleasant. Yes, it can be very unpleasant, but you do see where we are now? This is even more unpleasant.
There are more of us than there is of them, that is saying something. But when they speak they are just louder and more forceful. Kind of like having 100 people on a train together. You may not like the person you are sitting next to and they probably don’t like you either but the two of you aren’t at each other’s throats over it. Everyone is sitting in their seat minding their business when along comes some loud drunk getting on the train and then insulting some people that he doesn’t like the look of. Perhaps even bumping into some other people on purpose trying to get them upset. And then before you know it some people join in with him in insulting others. There will be a few brave individuals that will come of the aid of those that are being harassed, but most will just sit there because they don’t want to get involved. They either don’t care to or perhaps they secretly like what is happening?
We will always have those obnoxious individuals that love to cause trouble but that doesn’t mean we have to join in with them? Or worse, just go along. Those are the worst people because they know better. When you see a wrong and you do nothing or say nothing, then you are complicit. Perhaps you can’t personally intervene but you can go for help you know? There are several ways that you can help without some confrontation. All I’m asking is for you to try?
The Hunger Games movies were on T.V. last night and I did watch them here and there. I’ve seen them all in the past and they are very good movies. I don’t like the subject content but they are very good. Well, as I watched the movies I was watching them through new eyes. They were just different somehow now. I think that because of what has happened with the Capital siege I am a different person now. I used to always see life in grey. I recognize that each and every one of us has good and bad inside. Some people have more good than bad. And some people have more bad than good. But now after what has happened and we just have 2 sides to choose from, I only see life in Black and White. Not caucasian and African-American, but actual black and white as in good or bad, right or wrong, black and white. There is really no middle now. You have to choose a side and hopefully it will be a non-violent side. There is no going along anymore. Not if you care about our democracy.
I believe that things will get worse.
If you really want to know my next prediction? WORSE! And why do I think things will get worse? Because I recognize the blueprint.
January 7, 2021
Message From My Brother Johnny
(My brother Johnny is 8 years younger than me. He lives in Ireland with his partner Sabina and their daughter Vivien. He also has two wonderful girls from a previous marriage to an Irish National. Johnny graduated from The London School of Economics, and has a degree in Political Science and he minored in German. Every major political or economic event that happens my brother has predicted it sometimes years in advance so I listen to him with he speaks. This is what he messaged me today……)
Sadly, I won’t either,
I am from Rome, Georgia
I am a Roman of Floyd County
(Although I cannot vote in Georgia as I am a Florida resident.)
January 5, 2021
Georgia Election Night
A Conversation Between My Brother Johnny Who Lives In Ireland, and Me via Twitter
(Johnny was born in Dahlonega but last lived in Savannah, Georgia. Therefore, he is a legal resident of the State of Georgia.)
(I had sent him photos of the DIY projects that Gordon and I were doing in our kitchen.)
Julie Barefoot Mask and Sun Glasses
Thank you for your interest in our website.
Welcome to Barefoot Beach Teas
I got the idea about 3 years ago to create a nice tea and have it look like the beach. I even thought of putting some sort of seashell candy inside of the tea so that when you came across it you will squeal with delight at finding a pretty sea shell in your very own beach tea. Hopefully, reminding you of that time long ago when you were on vacation at the beach and finding pretty beachy shell souvenir’s to take home and show your friends.
My original thoughts were to just make one type of tea, a sandy colored tea. But I then realized that I would like to create a Varie-tea. 🙂 But as I put more thought into it, I realized how great it would be to make several teas and have them look like my most favorite beaches. For example, here in Florida we have bright white powdered sand. (Hence, a coconut tea.) On some of the beaches in Hawaii, where we lived for 13 years, they have sandy colored thick sand beaches, as well as black sand beaches, and there is even some green colored sand beaches. The black sand being powered volcanic rock on The Big Island and the green sand beach of Papakolea Beach, also located on The Big Island of Hawaii, it’s gets it’s green color from the Olivine sand eroding out of the enclosing volcanic cones.
At this Barefoot Beach Tea debut I still have a few more teas to add as I get around to it.
Here are my Coral Beach and Sandy Beach Teas
with little Candy Sea Shells.
The Beach in a Jar
How many of you collect sand from the beach when you go on vacation?
Perhaps placing it into a jar to bring home? Well, that was my inspiration.
My Sandy Beach Tea
This tea I based on that tall bottle full of sand and shells you see in the photos, top and bottom. It is the sand that I collected from our beach when we lived in Ewa Beach, Hawaii. Our home was right across the street from the beach. Granted, there was a Marine barracks blocking our view of the beach but, we would walk a block away and enter our beach from there. I collected that sand in several bottles to bring with us when we moved back to The Mainland.
I Decorated the Jars With Shell Stickers
This is a Ginger Tea, Meant to be Consumed Hot
Coral Beach Tea
Based on a Lovely Pinkish Coral Beach
This Tea is Meant to be Consumed Cold
My Old Beach Diary and Classic Shades, Along with my Sandy Beach Tea
Our Sandy Beach Tea is a very Healthy Ginger Tea
(I gave this gift along with some Ginger Cookies.)
I like the presentation of the teas with the jars upside down so that you can see the candy sea shells on the “beach.”
Just place 1, 2, or 3 teaspoons of tea per 8 ounces of water.
The ratio’s are up to you and your personal tastes.
If you find you would prefer them sweeter then add more sugar. But I do ask that you learn to enjoy them as they are and not loaded with sugar. Besides, lots of sugar makes you stupid and we are surrounded with sugar in all of our foods and beverages as it is.
So, let’s try to enjoy something that is not as sweet.
Welcome to Cocoa Beach
Think Fancy Organic Hot Chocolate
I decorated the jar lids with some beach glass that I found in Hawaii. Candy sea shells inside, but I also do like to give this tea as a gift with some coconut cookies and mini marshmallows.
This is a Healthy Hot Chocolate
Our Russian Tea
(On top of Brodie’s old I SPY Sand Castle Puzzle that I found in our Garage)
This recipe goes back to when Gordon was 11 years old and attended his very first square dance in Charlotte, North Carolina, along with his brother Jeff, and sister Heather. A lady was serving Russian Tea and Gordon loved it so much he asked her for the recipe and she gave it to him. It’s been a Whann tradition ever since.
Enhancing our Russian Tea with some Nautical Rope and Knots
Lovely Gift of Tea
Some of the Ingredients We Used
The Beginnings of Making the Teas
(I wanted to include my star fish bowl and some of my shells.)
When it came to the making of these teas I pretty much had it in my mind the ingredients that I wanted to use, I just didn’t know how they would taste together? But, that was the fun part. Putting the ingredients together and coming up with something that passed the taste test, but that was also healthy.
In this Covid 19/Cold and Flu Season I wanted these teas to be something that would help to heal the sick. Sooth that sore throat. Give that boost to the immune system. And not necessarily give in to your sweet tooth cravings. For these teas are more about your health than your sweet pleasures.
Organic Ginger Powder, Organic Cocoa, Cocoa, Organic Acai Powder, Powdered Sugar, Coconut Water Powder, Watermelon Powder Tea, and Organic Pomegranate Powder
Organic Maca in Photo Top Right
The Powdered Pomegranate tends to harden quite quickly when exposed to air.
You will need lots of clean jars and lids. We washed the jars in the dishwasher but didn’t touch the insides. I did hand wash the jar lids and seals by hand and let them dry.
Welcome to Sandy Beach
3 Cups Powdered Ginger
(If you aren’t a big fan of Ginger then you may want to reduce the amount here.)
2 Cups Confectioner’s Sugar
3 Cups Unsweetened Tea
3 Cups Sweet Tea
2 Cups Organic Maca
Ignore the dry milk in the photo left, that didn’t go into this tea but the Nestea Sweet Iced Tea did.
Nestea Unsweetened Iced Tea
Organic Powdered Ginger
Just place all the ingredients into a large mixing bowl…..
Here we are adding a bit more of this, and a bit more of that….
Adding the Confectioner’s Sugar….
I wanted to use Confectioner’s Sugar in these teas because I thought it would add to the texture.
Now place the Tea into the jars…….
And add a few Sea Shell Chocolates.
You don’t have to place the shell chocolates into the hot tea when you make it.
You can just snack on them as you find one.
Spooky and Sparky
Cute Sleepy Doggy Break
Welcome to Coral Beach
(I wanted this tea to be consumed iced cold on a hot day.)
7 Cups Powdered Coconut Water
3 Cups Watermelon Tea
3 1/2 Cups Confectioner’s Sugar
1 Cup Organic Pomegranate Powder
1 Cup Dry Milk
Making The Coral Beach Tea
Photo left: Our Organic Coconut Powder and Watermelon Tea.
Photo right: Our Confectioner’s Sugar and our Organic Pomegranate Powder
Combining all of the Ingredients to a Large Mixing Bowl
This Organic Coconut Powder was Wonderful!
This is an ingredient that we would like to see how we can use it in other recipes.
The Organic Pomegranate Powder Dries Fast so add to Recipe Quickly
Adding Our Watermelon Tea
Powdered Milk helped to make this recipe a bit creamy.
I also recommend keeping Dry Milk in your pantry. It has come in handy quite a few times during our self-isolation when we would run out of fresh milk.
Adding our Confectioner’s Sugar
Stir to Combine….
Time for a Taste Test
Then When Satisfied…
Time to Place into Jars and add the Candy Shells
Making Our Organic Cocoa Beach Tea
This is a Healthy Organic Hot Chocolate
We topped the jars with some Candy Shells and some Shredded Coconut.
Everything Ready to Make This Tea
Organic Cocoa and Acai Powders
This Acai Powder has so many health benefits.
Gordon and I need to find other ways that we can consume it in the future.
7 Cups Cocoa Powder
3 Cups Acai Powder
2 Cups Confectioner’s Sugar
2 Cups Organic Cocoa Powder
3 Cups Powdered Milk
3 1/2 Cups Powdered Coconut Water
5 Cups Granulated Sugar
Combining All of Our Ingredients into a Large Mixing Bowl
We did use a combination of Organic Cocoa Powder as well as regular Cocoa Powder.
The Confectioner’s Sugar
The Last of our Powdered Coconut Water Being Added