Friday, June 26, 2009

Only The Good Friday - Because Enough with the Bad

It's been a while since I've posted. I took a little blogging hiatus.

Needed some time to focus on some other things.

I was actually not going to come back from my hiatus until Monday, but it's Friday, which means it's Only The Good Friday, and as this week seems to have been particularly mired in the bad out there, I thought it was time for some good.

So, as the rest of the interwebs, and media outlets and such focus on the "BAD" today (there's a really bad pun in there somewhere, but I'm leaving that one entirely alone), let's take a look at what's good this week:

For starters, personally for me, the sun is out today. After WEEKS of cloudy grey skies and wake up (after a loud and stormy night) and see

That's a good thing folks. (disclaimer, that picture was actually NOT taken today, it was taken a few weeks ago, but you don't care about that, do you?)

Also on the good? It is Fiesta Friday in Gloucester, Massachusetts tonight, which means a bunch of crazy folks will be out and about partying about town.

And I and my crazy friends will be among the bunch. As a group we tend to do a lot of praying and good deeds together, but not as much rowdy partying, or just casual "hanging out" as we'd like, so we're all pretty excited about a night out on the town.

Always a good time when we get together. This picture is from last year's Fiesta, and as much as I hate how I look in it, it's proof positive of the wild and crazy bunch I run I've dropped 25 lbs. since it was taken, so this year's pictures should be be
tter for all! ;-)

As if that wasn't enough goodness, last night I booked my flight to Cali, where I will be going to visit my cousin PM and her boys (husband and two sons) for a week in July.
I promised her oldest I'd come see "his house" this summer, and am so happy to be delivering on that promise. Can't wait to see them all...

And finally, because um...I really need to go get ready for work, I leave you with this bit of good...

You woke up this morning. No matter the state of your life, the stresses, the aches, the sadness, or whatever else you might be dealing woke up. You were blessed with another chance to turn it around. Say a prayer of thank you, and enjoy your Friday.

Have a GOOD Friday everyone, and don't forget to pop on over to Shelly's, the creater of Only The Good Friday, and see what else is good.

Tuesday, June 09, 2009

What if I told you...

I’ve been thinking a lot lately about my ex, Cognac.

There, I said, I admit it.

I’m not entirely sure why he’s been residing so constantly on my mind, but there it is, he’s been ever present for the last few weeks.

I have my theories as to why he’s hanging around in my mind, but I think the gist of it is simply that I’ve realized I’m ready. Ready for what, you ask? Ready to fall in love again.

No, not with him. I’ve been there, done that. Twice.

That ship sailed, hit an iceberg and sank. Hard.

No, my thoughts on Cognac are simply about the feelings, not the man. Because for all the faults Cognac had, the love was real.

I think all these feelings have been stirring inside me for weeks now, trying to find a way to come together and make sense. For me, being the ever independent, completely content with my life style, single girl, it’s never easy to focus for too long on feelings of loneliness. Even typing out that word seems false to me. I’m rarely ever lonely. Alone yes, but lonely? That’s hard for me to accept. I revel in my alone time, the quiet, the freedom, the ability to do as I please.

If for a moment I get a tinge of loneliness, I pick up the phone, turn on the computer, and surround myself with family or the friends I’ve collected over the years as a single girl.

For I am blessed to have the most amazing family and friends a person could ever ask for.

So loneliness? Seems ridiculous that I should ever utter that word. It’s certainly not about loneliness, but there’s that quiet ache inside for something more. It’s been so quiet, for so long that I barely ever hear its cry. But now and again it does manage to get a little louder, to make itself heard. Lately has been one of those times.

I wasn’t aware of it at first, so slowly was it creeping up on me, with memories of Cognac perhaps, subtle hints, tiny pangs. And then I got the call. A friend of mine, 10 years my junior, got engaged this past weekend.

Chew on that for a minute, because I’ve had to do just that. Let it sink in. Swim around in my brain for a bit.

My immediate reaction was pure and unselfish joy. How amazingly wonderful for her. So in love, so young, so excited and deserving.

And then. A pause.

So young. So in love. How wonderful for her.

A pang.

So young. How wonderful.

And there it was. What about me? When will it be my turn?

It lasted only moments, and I put it out of my mind. After all, I love my life. Love every moment of my crazy, hectic, spontaneous, eccentric, creative, fabulous single life.

I’m also a firm believer in that old adage of “if it’s meant to be”. “It’ll happen when you least expect it”. Etc. etc. I’ve never been one to “look” for love, it’s always found me unexpectedly and in the most wonderful ways. I don’t believe in focusing all my energy finding “the one” and in the meantime missing out on life. I just live. And because of that, I have the most amazing life, the most amazing friends, experiences, memories, and plans. Life is good.

So, the momentary pang of “what about me” passed quickly enough. Or so I thought.

But I’ve found my mind refocusing on that question more than once since that call on Saturday night. And with that Cognac haunts me. Sneaking up unexpectedly. A song that reminds me of him, a word he used to say, those memories we keep. And I know it’s not about him, it’s about the feelings.

I suppose it’s time I realize that I’m ready and maybe that I want it all a little bit more than I’ve been willing to admit, even to myself.

So there you have it.

Now what?

Friday, June 05, 2009

Only The Good Friday - Music To My Ears

It’s Friday! And that means that after a short hiatus, I’m back with Only the Good Friday! YAY!!!

In case you don’t know, Only The Good Friday (heretofore OTGF because I’m too lazy to type it all out) was dreamed up by the one and only Shelly of
This Eclectic Life.

In case you also don’t know, I love Shelly, she’s funny, and witty and a great blogess, but more than that she is an amazingly generous and giving person, always looking for ways to do good in the world.

She will tell you otherwise though. She’ll tell you she’s snarky and sarcastic and maybe even a little bit mean (she’s not), and she will tell you THAT is the reason behind OTGF. She saw it as an opportunity to take one day a week where she (and in turn we) would only post good things. No snarkiness, no sarcasm, no meanness. Not on Fridays. On Fridays we post GOOD things. Happy thoughts. Helpful hints. Positive links, etc. etc.

Of course, I had to jump right on that bandwagon, because a wagon full of goodness? How could you not want to go for a ride?

So, here I am, spreading the good. Some Fridays I’m a bit more altruistic, and I share with you things that can help you do some good, good links to visit, tell you about good folks you should know, etc.

Other Fridays I get a bit more personal and tell you about the good stuff going on in my life.

And then some Fridays I stay simple and just share with you things that make me smile. A good photo, a good joke, a picture of a really hot guy…hey, whatever works right?

The point is, it’s all good. And it all depends on the kind of Friday I’m having.

SO, what kind of Friday will today be, you ask? AH…well…today is all about music.

Because I recently have acquired an addiction (seriously somebody stop me) to discovering and downloading new music. I think a good song can change the way I feel about life, so I want to share with you some of my current favorites.

Because it’s easier for me to share youtube videos on a blog than it is to share mp3s, you get the video as well as the song…what a “good” bonus. And if you can’t watch videos where you are at least you have enough information about the song that you can go look it up and listen for yourself, right?


First of all, I’m so very excited about Daughtry’s new album which comes out in July, and love their new song “No Surprise” so here is that:

And if we’re going to talk about American Idols, I can’t leave out my favorite ever rendition of a rap song…Kris Allen’s “Heartless”:

And one last American Idol, David Cook’s cd is pretty much in heavy rotation on my mp3 player, and I truly love the entire thing, but “Permanent” in particular is quickly becoming a favorite song for me.

Pink may not be an American Idol, but I think she is an incredibly talented songstress who is HIGHLY underrated, and I LOVE her new song “Don’t Leave Me” for it’s raw pain and emotion:

This post is getting pretty long already, so I’m going to save some of my other finds for a later date, but moving off the beaten path a little bit, I think it’s only proper that in the spirit of OTGF I promote an Indie artist. Right? Right. So, I’ve got to tell you about someone I discovered via Twitter. Don’t even ask me how I came across him on there, because I simply don’t remember, but the fact remains that I’m glad I did.

Not only am I a fan of his music, but I’m also a fan of his Tweets. This could veer the whole post off on the direction of why I love Twitter for allowing you to get up close and personal with people you might not otherwise ever have an opportunity to meet, but…well, I’ll save that for another time.

Anyway, Chris Blake is his name, and this song is "Mean" which I'm really loving.

Here’s a link to where you can check out the rest of his music:
Chris Blake. And no, I’m not getting paid to promote him or anyone else in this post, I’m just doing this for the love of music, and because us struggling artists (singers, writers, photographers, whatever) need to cheer each other on and help each other on, don't you think?

Okay, that’s it, that’s my good for today…go forth and spread good cheer. And be sure to visit Shelly and see what Good she’s got up her sleeve and who else is in on the game.

Thursday, June 04, 2009

Thursday Thirteen - It's BAACK...

I’ve missed doing Thursday Thirteens. A few weeks ago I decided I was going to start doing them again, but when I headed over to the TT website, it was GONE. GONE I tell you. And I? Was sad.

But then this week,
Frances, the fearless and amazing leader of SheWhoBlogs discovered the new home for Thursday Thirteen. And I? Was so happy.

So, now, I’m happy to say that I will once again be doing Thursday Thirteens! YAY. Celebrate with me, this is a good day, because any incentive to get me blogging MORE is a good thing, right? Yeah, okay, whatever…just go with it, lest I’m tempted to have another conversation with myself…

Without further ado, let’s get on with this week’s Thursday Thirteen.

I thought I’d kick it off with Thirteen Mottos I live my live by:

1. Live like this is your last day on earth. - This is by far the most important one, because well…everything else stems from this.

2. Count your blessings every day. – Every single day take a moment or 20 to count your blessings. Literally, list them out, name them, count them. With our busy lifestyles, I guarantee you won’t have time to count them all. That’s the point.

3. Notice the little things. – Sort of the “stop and smell the roses” if you will. Don’t go through your day staring down at your feet, you’ll miss the whole point of life. See the bird up in the tree, that crack on the sidewalk shaped like a heart, the way the droplet of water makes its way down a windowpane…NOTICE.

4. Tell people you love them. – Always, every chance you get, let those around you know how much they matter to you, how valuable they are, that you love them.

5. Be silly. – Forget what “they” say you’re supposed to act like. Who the hell are “they” anyway? Life is way too short to be serious all the time, be silly, do stupid things, laugh at yourself.

6. Work hard – play harder. Yes, it’s almost the same as number 5, but it’s just a reminder that it’s important to be serious sometimes, to get stuff done, to do the responsible thing. Work, exercise, eat healthy, pay your bills, do all the right stuff. But when that’s done, HAVE FUN, indulge, spoil yourself a little, have a

7. Do good things. – work hard, play harder, GIVE the hardest. If you do good things then you know that there is no better feeling in the world than when you do for others. Do good things.

8. Never pay full price. – Hey, they couldn’t all be serious right? But seriously, if you want something, find it on sale, if it’s not on sale, you don’t need it yet. Yes, there are exceptions, but in general, never pay full price.

9. When all else fails, wear nice shoes. – There’s just something about a great pair of shoes to uplift your mood. Try it. I’m telling you, it works.

10. You really do decide what mood you will be in, so make the right decision each morning.
11. Smile at strangers. – That is all, just do it. (but you know, be careful and all that other stuff…lol)

12. Pray. When you’re grateful. When you’re scared. When you’re lost. When you’re lonely. When you’re happy. When you’re at your wits end. When you’re euphoric at your good fortune. Pray.

13. Allow yourself to have off days. We all have off days, and sometimes, it’s okay to succumb to them. Just don’t stay there too long.

I have to tell you, this list was actually a lot easier to write than I initially thought it would be. I probably could have written another 13. Turns out I live my life by a whole crap load of directives. What do you think? What are your tried and true “words to live by”?

Don't forget to go check out other Thursday Thirteen participants here.

Tuesday, June 02, 2009

A serious conversation

I believe my “blogger” card has officially been revoked.

Boy do I suck as a blogger lately.

I’ve been having one of those internal conversations for a few weeks now. You know, the serious conversations you have with yourself?

It’s been going a little bit like this:

Me: Self, maybe you should just throw in the towel on this whole blogging business.

Self: NOOOOOO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Me: But, Self, you’re just not giving it the attention it deserves. Your heart isn’t in it, admit it.

Self: NOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!

Me: Self, stop that and listen up. You have serious writer’s block, you stare at the computer monitor and that darned blinking cursor and can’t think of a single thing to blog about lately. And even if you can think of something to blog about, you’re too busy to sit down and compose a post. You can’t blog from work like you used to at your old job, and you are never home evenings/weekends to do it. Face it, life has changed, you just can’t blog anymore.


Me: Stop that.

Self: No, I will not. I will NOT listen to you, I will NOT quit blogging I will not will not will not.

Me: Okay, fine, then tell me, what are you going to do, because this is not working. You call yourself a blogger, but it’s been WEEKS since your last post. And you haven’t written anything of any quality in months, admit it.

Self: well…I don’t know, but I can’t quit. I can’t do it, I love my blog, I love my readers, I love that whole community, I can’t stop.

Me: Readers? Self, let’s be honest here, you don’t have any readers left. The few you did have, have long given up on you producing anything worth reading. They are kind of tired of coming in here and seeing a lame post from 3 weeks ago. You have made them promises of if not quantity, at the very least quality and have constantly failed to deliver. Can you blame them for bolting?

Self: Um…(looks down at feet, wrings hands) No…

Me: And community? Self, I know you love your fellow bloggers, but have you checked the unread count on your google reader? Because it’s pretty astronomical. You no longer have time to read or comment on any of your favorite blogs, when’s the last time you even logged into google reader?

Self: Um…I miss them! I want to visit them, but I’m just so busy…

Me: I know, Self, I know, but that’s what I’m telling you, maybe you just need to face facts and bow out gracefully.

Self: NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Me: Self!

Self: NO, you listen up, absolutely not I will NOT quit. I will not! So, maybe you’re right, maybe I’ve been neglectful of my bloggy friends. Maybe I don’t read or comment on their blogs like I used to. Maybe I don’t write quality posts like I used to. Maybe life has gotten a wee bit hectic and I’ve let it overshadow the “bloggy” part of it, but damn it, I’m a blogger. And they understand. They all have busy lives too. They don’t love me any less for it. Whenever I do pop in and say hello on their blogs, they still welcome me with open arms, even if it’s not as often. And whenever I do post in here, even if it is only once in a while, they are there for me. So, my comment count is negligible on both ends, giving and receiving. And you know what? Maybe I’m writing with no audience, but I don’t care. I’m a blogger, this is what I do. I’m not giving up on myself, and damn it, you shouldn’t either. We do good work when we work together.

Me: Well…okay then, I guess when you put it that way.

Self: I DO!

Me: Alright then, so what do we do?

Self: We keep trying. We post when we can, we read when we can, and we hope our readers, our bloggy friends understand and stick around. And even if they don’t, we write because we are a blogger, and that’s what bloggers do. Got it?

Me: Got it. Okay. Let’s do it.

Self: Good.

So, yeah…not quitting. Still attempting to write and entertain all 1 of you still reading. Y’all come back now you hear? ;-)