Random Thoughts: The TiddlyWinks Championships And Other Random Thoughts

Welcome to my weekly Randomly Thinking post where I share random thoughts that pop into my head throughout the week. Enter at your own risk. There is a lot of saracasm, teasing and jokes and a little bit of seriousness.

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I don’t know how the topic came up, but my son mentioned Tiddlywinks the other night and at some point he said he thought was what “old people were referring to when they think a couple is doing something inappropriate.”

I said, “Honey, no. Tiddlywinks is a game.”

So we looked up Tiddlywinks online and not only did we find what the game is but we found a Youtube link to the Tiddlywinks Singles World Championships. Yes, I’m serious.

In case you don’t know what Tiddlywinks is, here is a photo:

I offered commentary for the Tiddlywinks singles championship in a British accent because for some reason it needed to be narrated that way.

“Here we are, ladies and gentlemen. The Tiddlywinks singles championship. This is a tense moment for our finalists. Will Bob be able to flip that disc and hold on to his reign as winker of the world?”

No kidding. The term is “winker of the world.” That’s what the man who won the championship said, anyhow.

“It’s great to be the winker of the world again,” he said.

In case you need some fun, I’ve linked to the video for you, and please notice how the one man is squinting the entire time, which I think may be because he’s squinted so much trying to line up his shots. Also, full confession, I don’t remember ever playing Tiddlywinks. If you just really must know more about the game, you can find more information on this site.

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I’m plugging through Rescue Me by Susan May Warren despite the fact that she wrote that her characters ate chocolate donuts with orange juice.

Ew. Who does that? I asked my husband that and he said “People who worship the devil.”

I mean, something sweet like that with the organge juice and making the orange juice have a bitter aftertaste. Yuck.

I was reading the section and crying, “No! Why is she pouring orange juice?! She just offered him a cake donut with chocolate icing. They’re not going to drink that are th– Oh my gosh! They drank it! She actually wrote they drank it!”

I then warned my son against the evils of people who drink orange juice while eating a chocolate donut. He promised me he would never marry a woman who believed such a thing.

“Only milk with chocolate donuts, okay?”

“Yes, Mom, I agree.”

Whew. Crisis averted. I’ll keep reading the book but this woman is on very thin ice with me right now. If she has someone drinking milk with potato chips then it’s over. Book closed and put aside.

***

I listen to this old late 40s/early 50s sitcom/radio show called Our Miss Brooks at night as I fall asleep as a way to focus my brain on something other than every day worries. I wake up at night and the show is still going. It plays through the next episode and I listen along until I pass out again. I’ve mentioned the show here before.

The plot of the show is about a teacher named Miss Brooks who lives with her landlady, Mrs. Davis, and interacts with her principal, Osgood Conklin, his daughter Harriet Conklin, Harriets boyfriend Walter Denton, and Miss Brook’s crush Philip Boyton, who is a total uptight moron who never gets how much Connie (Miss Brooks) is in love with him. He says so many stupid things that anyone walking by my room at night might hear me say things like “Good grief, you’re a moron,” or “Give up on him, Connie. He’s never going to get it!”

Anyhow, some guy transferred these shows from old reels or … I don’t know what.. to podcast form. He started uploading them in 2007 on Apple (which I didn’t realize until I looked it up for this post) and when he first did it he was all chipper like “Hey! Enjoy these reproduced old shows! If you want to buy the collection, you can go to my site here!”

By the time he hits 2019, it’s obvious the whole idea of making money off this endeavour has tanked and instead of being chipper, he starts sounding threatening: “Hey, I put all these on for you and why am I charging more now? Well, because I’m losing money on trying to be nice and I’m really tired of it. So I’m not going to be nice anymore. You want this stuff, buy it, or this podcast is gone.”

That’s not exactly what he says, but close. He does really say the thing about “I lost money on this whole thing last year,” like that is somehow the fault of the listener. It’s so depressing, I just skip over his intros now. But I guess he learned the hard way, like newspapers, that if you give people for free and then try to go back to charging them for it, they aren’t really going to be very willing to start paying for it.

***

We visited my neighbor this week because she has been very down since her grandchildren were shipped across the country to live with their dad (my daughter has also been down because these were her only in-person friends). We went down to play a round of Yahtzee. She wanted to play two but the one round made the minds of us Math/Number Illiterates (me and my son) hurt so we declined. When we walked into the house, my neighbor immediately handed me a small bag of green leaves. If it had been anyone else I would have been worried. I actually thought she was handing me loose tea, because she drinks tea, but it turned out it was catknip for our cats.

I shoved it in my pocket and didn’t think much about it until later that night at home when I walked by where I had hung up my coat and it was laying on the floor with two cats pawing at it and rubbing themselves all over it. The kitten (Scout) had been sniffing the pocket when I first hung it up but I didn’t even remember the baggie with the cat drugs at that point.

It wasn’t until I saw the fat one (Pixel) had removed the baggie from the pocket and was trying to rip into into it that I remembered. I gave them part of the catnip and decided to save the rest until later. I have to becareful, though, and make sure the drawer with the bag in it is tightly closed because the last time I had catnip and kept it in a kitchen drawer and didn’t shut it all the way, the older cat found a way to pry the drawer the rest of the way open and dig out the bag.

***

Some thoughts for world events right now: “If you’re a common sense person, you probably don’t feel you have a home in this world right now. If you’re a Christian, you know you were never meant to.” – Patricia Heaton, actress.

***

I liked this take from Fuel From the Race on all that is happening these days :

“My knees bend to no one but King Jesus. Through the mix of hatred and political haze of confusion, I know the One Who still has His place on the throne of the universe. Kings and kingdoms will all fade and vanish and yet, He will still be sovereign.”

Randomly Thinking: The Weird Things Children say and Do and other random thoughts

Welcome to my weekly Randomly Thinking post where I share random thoughts that pop into my head throughout the week. Enter at your own risk.

Why is it when I buy waffles, the children in my house no longer want them? Then, when said waffles have been eaten, a child invetibly asks “Do we have waffles?” My son does this to me all the time with ice cream as well. Like he’ll say, “I’d like some ice cream.” And I get him ice cream and then he doesn’t eat it so somone else in the family will eat it (not me because I can’t have most of the stuff in most ice creams) then he says, “Where’s my ice cream?”

The ice cream isn’t there for a week when it is eaten either. It’s there for two or three months without him touching it, and finally someone eats it.

The kids, of course, get this from my husband who will let my mom’s left over apple pie sit there for a week before he will touch it and I figure he isn’t going to eat it so I eat it and then he says, “Where is my pie?” Come on! No one leaves my mom’s homemade pie in the refrigerator for a week! Sheesh!

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Our six-month old kitten keeps running outside when we open a door to go anywhere. We usually spend anywhere from 15 to 30 minutes chasing her between properties and under bushes. I get really tired of trying to catch her when I need to be inside teaching children or cooking or loading the dishwasher. I will finally throw up my hands and declare: “That’s it! She’s on her own! I don’t care. Let her get eaten by a bear if that’s what she wants. I’m not messing with her anymore!”

Apparently I’ve said this too much because Monday my 6-year old daughter stomped into the living room and declared: “Scout is gone. I don’t care! She can be eaten by a bear for all I care. I’m done. I’m not messing with her anymore.”

Watching her declare all this with the sincerity of a 6-year old was hilarious and made me glad I hadn’t thrown in any curse words out when I was grumbling about the kitten.

The fact her expressions even looked like mine made it all that much more creepy.

(The kitten came back in on her own ten minutes later, incidentally.)

***

One night this week I was reading a book by Charles Martin and part of it deals with the loss of a baby during labor and later their road to adoption. It made me all emotional and feel such gratitude for both my children. It was after midnight but I knew my son would still be awake. I didn’t want to climb out of bed (the dog was curled up at my feet) so I texted my son, telling him I loved him.

This was, apparently, unnerving to him.

Him: Love you too. Did something happen? Did someone die?


Me: Lol. No. Just reading a sappy book and it made me think how lucky I am to have you kids.

Him: You usually don’t text me at 12:34 so I was scared that some kid died a horrible and painful death.

Nice to know that telling my son I love him strikes fear in his heart.

***

You know you live in a small area when the most exciting news of the day is that the town 20 minutes from us is gettin’ an Aldis! (I had to pause after writing this to call my mama and tell her!). I kid you not.

The reporter who works with my husband actually called at 9 p.m. to suggest they put it up on the paper’s website as breaking news. They put that story up as breaking news, but did not post that the governor came down with COVID as breaking news. Yes, this is a small, rural area. (Update: my husband says they did post the governor’s diagnosis as breaking news, but I told him I was leaving it that they didn’t because it was funnier for my blog post. He was not amused.).

***

I was picking out some Christmas cards onine for my parents. I found one that I liked but I told my mom I didn’t feel the painting on the front could be historically accurate. I said, “It’s Mary on a donkey holding baby Jesus. She wouldn’t be on a donkey with the baby. She was on the donkey before she had Jesus. And by the time they were leaving Bethlehem, Jesus would have been a toddler because the Bible says it took the Wise Men at least two years to find him.”

Mom, as she often does, schooled me on her Biblical knowledge by telling me, “Well, actually she probably would have been on a donkey with the baby because they had to take him to the temple in Jerusalem and that has to be done when they are a newborn and in a certain amount of days.”

I don’t even remember what else she said. I was so dumbfounded on how, once again, she put me in my place when it comes to the Bible, and in such a polite way too.

***

I think felines have short memories or almost no memories at all. Every morning my husband lets our older cat outside before he goes to work. Now that the temperature has dropped, by the time I come downstairs (usually a couple hours later because even though I am awake, I don’t want to get out of bed, especially if it is cold out), she wants back in and lets me know by standing on the table on our back porch and looking in the kitchen window.

I let her in, she takes a couple of bites of food and then she goes right back to the back door to be let out again.

I let her out but I tell her “you just came in, you know it’s cold.” And less than a half an hour later when I let the dog out, the cat comes in again after crying desperately at the window. A half an hour later she wants out again, but every time she goes out she looks bewildered, as if she is saying, “It’s so cold out here. Why is it so cold out here?” I always want to say back to her, “We talked about this before. It’s cold. Remember?” It’s our routine all day long. I’m wondering if it will hit her it’s actually winter by January.

***

I’m looking at reading challenges to do in 2021 and wondering if I will actually do them. I hope I do. One of the challenges is to read one classic book a month. I definitely want to do this one, because I had already planned to read a couple more classics in 2021, including a couple of Jane Austen books and maybe another George Elliott book (even though my son has written a book report on Silas Marner, which we read last month, and declared her to be a very boring writer. She isn’t. He was simply mad that I made him rewrite the book report because he made too many jokes in the first one.)

***

My husband and I recently watched a show about old, famous estates in England. The one episode was about Princess Diana’s family’s estate at Althorp. It was fascinating and though I have seen interviews with the 9th Earl of Spencer before (Charles Spencer) and know he’s very down to earth, it was interesting to see how much work he actually does to keep the estate running and why. His main reason is to keep the history that is there in good shape because there is not only British history there, but American history as well. He liked telling the interviewer that George Washington’s family “were essentially nannies for the Althrop family.” Despite seeming nice and sincere, he couldn’t seem to keep himself from reminding Americans their first president had once been a servant to his family.

“Don’t forget your place,” he seemed to be saying.

I’m kidding, of course. He didn’t say it that way at all, but I joked during it that was what he was trying to say.

Like many from the UK (or from our family), the Earl is quite pale, which led my son to remark, “That looks like a man who would find mayonnaise spicy.”

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Am I the only woman who doesn’t swoon at those movies about a woman falling in love with a man who she later finds out is a prince? With all the drama and attention that follows the British royal family, I can’t imagine having to deal with all that ridiculousness. Now, if that prince decides to give up his rights to the throne for me…. maybe.

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So those are my random thoughts for the week. What are yours? Let me know in the comments.

Randomly Thinking: More crazy book descriptions and premarital handholding

Welcome to my weekly Randomly Thinking post where I share random thoughts that pop into my head throughout the week. Enter at your own risk.

I imagine most of you in the US are having some sort of Thanksgiving celebration today. So first, Happy Thanksgiving!

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Nothing like looking up at the clock in the living room and realizing it is 20 minutes fast. Wonder how long it’s been like that? And what did I do very early in the day that I didn’t need to? This same clock was 40 minutes fast the next day even after we changed the battery. We decided it was time for the clock to be retired.

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My son is 14 now so some of his friends are starting to “date”. A sort-of friend of his texted him the other day to tell him he had a GF (girlfriend). My son rolled his eyes. I said “It’s probably one of those girls from the Christian school he goes to.” The Boy says, “Yeah, one of those girls that doesn’t believe in premarital hand holding.”

I snorted out a laugh.

“And they don’t even look each other in the eye because that’s too much too,” The Boy continued. “Like she accidentally looks him in the eye and goes ‘oh my gosh! We’re moving a little fast here, aren’t we?'”

I said, “Well, that’s why a lot of the kids from that school get married immediately after they graduate.”

“Why?” asked The Boy. “So they can finally make eye contact? ‘Oh! I always knew your eyes were hazel!'”

I said, “Um, no not so they can make eye contact.”

The Boy’s response: “Oh.” And he went back to school work because I’m pretty sure he didn’t want to think about that.

Plus, he knew I’d remind him that I don’t believe in premarital handholding either! At least not until he’s 25 or so *wink*

***

An elderly woman at the local little supermarket was the only bright spot of my day one day last week when she offered to let me go in front of her and I told she could go ahead, I was in no rush. She said ‘thank you’ because her husband was waiting for her in the truck outside and he “might get into trouble if she didn’t hurry up.” The way she said it with a little wink just cracked me up.

***

Pretty sure a lot of women would kill for a husband like mine who randomly says after dinner, “You just go sit and rest. I’ll wash the dishes.”

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Do you have a family of ad-libers like I do? People who watch movies or shows and occassionally sermons, and ad-lib one-liners, additional quotes, or new plot lines? If you do, you have my sympathy. It can be funny at times but when they are rewriting the entire script as the movie plays it can also be aggravating. I blame Mystery Science 3000, a show known for the way its hosts mock horribly bad movies. After The Boy and The Hubby watch their episodes, they suddenly think they can do the same thing. (Honestly, their ad-libs are funny, so don’t take my suggestion that it is annoying seriously.)

***

I wanted to update the tagline for the Kindle book ad I saw and mentioned last week. The actual tag line was “Accidentally wed to a screaming hot stranger.” Again, how do you accidentally marry someone?! My son said maybe they stumbled between the bride and groom right when the pastor said “I now pronounce you man and wife!” Even if that was possible, there is all that marriage license needing to be signed thing.

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Have you ever looked at some of the books on Kindle Unlimited? I’ve found some good ones but I’ve also seen more than I care to of “billionaire romances.” Seriously, how many single, eligible billionaires can there be in the world? To see all these romances you would think there are thousands of them, all men, and all sexy and living alone on their sprawling 200 acre ranch, pining away for a woman. And the women — well, they are always poor and in need of rescuing but they are also always suspicious of the rich man who can rescue them because he couldn’t possibly be rich and good looking, right?

***

Our kids were playing Minecraft the other day and Little Miss told her brother she needed him to get the creepers out of the McDonalds she built (which was odd since we never go to McDonalds). He used an ax and Little Miss said, “I don’t want you to use an ax! I want you to use your hands like a real man!” I have no idea where she got such a thing. I’m guessing she’s heard The Boy say it.

***

We went to see a light display at a golf course about 30 minutes from us. Lights and light displays were installed all throughout the course, on trees, in the fields, etc. I took some vidoes to show family but forgot about the my family’s tendancy to offer commentary at about every event (see aforementioned ad-libing issue). At one point our daughter said “Is that Santa in an airplane?” My husband said, “Yep.” She responded, “That is so cringe.” She’s six.

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We discovered The Goes Wrong Show a couple of months ago and it’s caused some serious laughing fits in our house. I highly recommend watching their show if you can find it. It is currently streaming on Britbox on Amazon. The premise is that a drama society acts out plays but something always goes wrong. They offered this skit up about a week ago for a charity event for the BBC. This is about the craziness that COVID has brought to us. Their other episodes will help you escape from current events so I have added a couple other clips of those, and one from the Royal Variety Show five years ago at the end of the post.

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So those are my random thoughts for this week. How about all of you? Any random thoughts? Let me know in the comments.

randomly thinking: I want my men to be men and other random thoughts

Welcome to my weekly Randomly Thinking post where I share random thoughts that pop into my head throughout the week. Enter at your own risk.

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I need to stop watching The Man From Snowy River. The Australian TV show version. There are a couple of reasons for this. First, it is cheesy, and second, I’ve started talking to everyone in a very bad Australian accent.

***

Our new kitten drives me crazy most days. I have to grab her when I let the dog out or when anyone goes in or out of the house or she takes off across the yard or toward the street in front of our house. On Monday we had to take her to be spayed and it was very strange not to have her in the house overnight. I had to admit that as annoyed as I get at her, I missed her stretching up her paws in the morning, meowing until I pick her up. I also missed her curling up on my chest for naps (she’s getting too long for this now). I didn’t miss her running around the house, climbing our window screens, scratching or attacking my daughter when she wants to play or running into the basement, rolling in the dirt, and bringing that dirt back up with her.

***

My dad is in self-imposed quarantine after a possible interaction with someone who had a family member who had COVID so I picked up some supplies for them at the local Dollar General. When I drove up their dirt road (we live on dirt roads here in the Boondocks) I saw something in the road, in front of their garage and hoped it was not dirt and their cat lying dead in the road. When I drove closer I could see it wasn’t their cat Molly (no I didn’t name my Molly in The Farmer’s Daughter after their cat), but an opossum. I looked down at it from the car and hoped it was simply “playing possum” and not actually dead, but alas, it did appear dead. I sent this text message to my husband later: “Dead possum in my parents’ road. Thought it was their cat, Molly. On a totally ‘unrelated note’: tacos for dinner!”

***

Note to cat owners, or those owned by cats rather: do not buy the cheap cat litter to save money. Just trust me. Especially do not do this if your adult cat thinks she can pee in your kitten’s cat litter, adding a much larger volume of urine to the cat pan each week.

***

My parents have horrible internet and a horrible internet provider. Their internet is out and they were told it will take three weeks for someone to come out and see why it’s not working. This means my mom is unable to download books to her Kindle and my dad is now unable to go on Facebook or look up information online. They are also in quarantine and it’s cold out, which means my dad won’t be outside working around the house to distract himself from the lack of internet. This combination of Mom without reading material and dad without a venting outlet (he actually connects with friends from high school on there as well) seemed like a bad idea to me so I drove to my parents’, picked up my mom’s Kindle, and am now downloading a ton of books into her Kindle to keep my parents from divorcing after 57 years of marriage.

***

I get the weirdest ads on the front of my Kindle these days. They are almost always for some weird romance book that makes me roll my eyes. One of the most hilarious taglines was something about a woman accidentally marrying a “hot assassin”. The Boy and I kept trying to figure out how a person “accidentally” marries someone. We were like, “what did she say? ‘Oops, it appears I tripped and fell into this wedding ceremony at the exact moment the pastor pronounced us man and wife.'”?

***

Here is another winning description on a Kindle romance book ad: “The powerful, terrifyingly seductive leader of Earth’s invaders wants to make her his.” That’s a lot of adjectives. And I’m guessing he’s an alien?

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And another: “What happens when you fall in love with your fake fiancé?” And all I can think is “Why do you have a fake fiancé in the first place?”

***

Harry Styles, the kid who used to sing with One Direction, posed for Vogue recently wearing a variety of dresses. Most of the “dresses” Harry wore aren’t anything a person in the real world would wear. They looked like he simply wrapped some fabric around himself and called it “a dress.” Celebrities. Sheesh. When is someone going to tell them they’re not grounded in reality? Oh, right. They like it that way. It’s how they make their living after all. I’d love to see him wear one of those “dresses” on stage while trying one of those fancy dance moves he’s famous for. I bet he breaks a leg, or at least an ankle when his foot gets caught on the hem or up in the fabric.

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It seems to be a popular theme in our society these days that a man can dress or act like a woman and a heterosexual woman will still find that man attractive. I didn’t find Harry attractive even when he wasn’t wearing a dress. I’m old enough to be his mother (if I’d had him at 17 anyhow). I, definitely, though, don’t find any man wearing a dress attractive (this does not include sexy Scottish men in kilts. Those are kilts, not dresses and with the right pair of manly legs, they are sexy.). I want my men to be scruffy, dirty, and all-the-way masculine. And I want them to be wearing pants. Well, not all the time, but if not pants, then shorts or boxers or nothing (gasp!); just not a dress. And okay I don’t really want them dirty either because well — ew. Dirty and sweaty? Gross! But you know what I mean.

***

I should probably mention that my husband is not scruffy or dirty. He doesn’t hunt, own a gun, ride a motorcycle, play a sport, knows nothing about cars, and he is a total Comic Book, Sci-Fi Geek. BUT he doesn’t wear dresses or paint his fingernails or put on lipstick so that makes him manly to me.

***

Those are a few of my random thoughts today. What are yours? Drop one in the comments and maybe I’ll share it in my next Randomly Thinking installment.

Randomly thinking: What makes people tell me their life stories?

I have no idea what it is about me that makes people tell me their dark secrets or life stories.
Last week I was at the local dollar store and made some comment to the cashier about needing to be more careful about what I spend since Christmas is coming up.
“I know,” she said. “I’m overdoing it this year because my daughters’ father died this year and I just want Christmas to be special for them.”
Not only was I sad to hear about the passing of their dad, but it struck me how we never know what people are going through in their lives. It also struck me that I had no idea why she was sharing this with me.
“I’m sorry,” I said. “I’m guessing you two weren’t together anymore?”
“No, but it’s still hard. Actually, it was harder than I thought it would be.”
“Well, just because people divorce or split up, there can still be good memories attached to that person,” I told her.
She agreed, I paid for my things and told her I’d be praying for her and her daughters this Christmas.



Three or four days later I’m at the local, tiny playground with my daughter. It has been unseasonably warm and on this day it was about 70 out. We’ve lived here for about eight months and have visited the playground several Jim times but I’ve never seen this many children there. There are only a small playground set, teeter-totters and a two-person swing set, and a basketball court (there is also a Little League field that isn’t being used). There were 15 children at this place and I was wigging out a little bit, grabbing for the hand sanitizer. Anyhow, there were two girls there about 10-years old and one of them kept watching us. I had a feeling she wanted to talk and I wasn’t sure I wanted to talk. She wasn’t wearing shoes and her face and clothes were somewhat dirty.
She leaned against the swing set and watched me push my daughter.
“Hello,” I said. “How are you?”
“Good. I’ve been down here since 11 (It was 5). My dad doesn’t care what I do. All he does is talk to his girlfriend on the phone and tell me to ‘shut up’.”
Well. Alright.
“Oh, I’m sorry to hear that. Do you live with him?”
“Yep. I didn’t used to, but I do now.”
“Oh. You don’t live with your mom?”
“No. My mom’s dead.”
When she said her mom was dead, she flinched a little. Maybe the part about her mom was a lie or maybe it was something her dad had told her to keep the truth from her. I don’t know.
Before I knew it, I was learning that she used to live with her aunt, her dad was around my age, and she had half-siblings and another one on the way with the new girlfriend.
I have no idea why she felt the need to tell me all about her life, but there I was with all kinds of anxiety inside me about this girl’s safety and future when all I’d wanted to do was get my daughter some fresh air on an unseasonably warm day.
I watched the two girls walk home, drove past where they said they lived, hoping they got there okay, and then prayed for them on the way home.

Edited to add: I don’t live far from this girl’s apartment house so I will drive by to check on her. I do think she was probably okay but for some reason wanted to share with me and may have been talked some things up a bit, so to speak. I’m not sure.

***

The next week Little Miss and I were down the street talking to our neighbor and her granddaughters. The one neighbor on the street we haven’t met came out and I said ‘hello.’ We struck up a conversation as we walked up the street (a little less than six feet apart but not much less) and by the time we reached his house, a few yards away, I had learned where he was originally from, he had a daughter who lived three hours away, his wife is a photographer and an accountant, who used to live in his house, who used to live in each house up the street, that a compressor is in the big white building behind his house, that he used to have six cats, but now he only has four and he used to own two Akita dogs. Oh, and I learned about the new owner of one of the houses on the street and what that man does for a living.
I texted this all to my husband who asked, “What did you do? Get his whole life story?”
“I don’t get it,” I said to my husband later that night. “Why do people tell me everything about themselves? I mean I don’t mind, but it’s weird. What about me says ‘Tell her all my secrets and life story.’?”
“You have a motherly feeling about you,” my husband said.
I think that might translate to “You’re plump and harmless looking and they know you couldn’t chase them down like some crazy person because you’d run out of air in six steps.”

Randomly Thinking: Vengeful deer, I’m addicted to maple syrup, ‘drug deals’ in church, and other odd thoughts

Welcome to my weekly Randomly Thinking post where I share random thoughts that pop into my head throughout the week. Enter at your own risk.

  • Sometimes I get up in the morning and I straight up drink out of the maple syrup bottle like I’m kicking back some whiskey (which I don’t drink). I’m not going to apologize for that. It makes me feel very Canadian. And fat. It makes me feel fat. But I’m okay with that. It’s worth it for the taste of maple syrup.

I’m having the worst run of luck with books and movies lately. They start out well but crash and burn either in the middle or right at the end, making me feel like I’ve wasted my time. It’s made me a little gun shy to try anything new, but if I don’t try new books and movies, I could miss out on a good one. It’s a catch 22.


  • I’m watching a show about the dead letter office in the post office. Part of the time the letters can’t be delivered because the address of the addressee is smudged and sometimes it is because the post office messed it up. It’s odd to see a show admit that the post office can mess things up in a day and age where we are being told the post office could never lose anything. Ahem. Moving on…One of the biggest things that bothers me about the show is how they essentially ruin lives and shrug it off for the most part. Sometimes they have guilt and I understand they are trying to get the letters or packages back to the owners to make up for the errors but in the last one I watched, a man’s son died and he never even had a chance to talk to him because the post office lost a letter his son sent to him. Had he got the letter, he could have seen his son before he died. I still like the show, however. That’s my only complaint and concern, which I can overlook for the sake of the story, but less so if it was real life.

  • As a woman who is getting older, I recognize when I have a “hormone shift” by how fast I cry over things other people probably wouldn’t cry over. My cycle is irregular these days, thanks to getting older, so the calendar isn’t always a good judge of when “Aunt Flow” is coming. What is a good judge is if I cry when my husband says things like “This year will probably be his (our son’s) last year to go trick-or-treating. He’s a teenager now.” Without warning I ended up sobbing while trying to peel and apple for our daughter. Good grief.

  • My husband is pretty sure the area deer are out to get him after he hit that doe with his car last week. We don’t know if the deer made it or not. My husband said she hit the front of the car, rolled up onto the windshield and the roof, and kept going. Somehow the roof wasn’t damaged. He had to drive our van to an assignment later that week and on the way back he looked to his right at an intersection (a middle-of-the-nowhere intersection) and saw a group of doe just watching him. Last night he was on his way back from the store and our neighborhood deer (these are the does who walk through our backyard a couple times a week) were standing in the street, one of them just watching him as he paused to let her cross. Another one had darted out in front of him on the way home earlier in the day, after he got his car back (with the new windshield). He’s definitely feeling like he is in the crosshairs of the local deer. He said it made him feel like this clip. (I do not condone the language in the clip, or the show itself, of course. I’m sure anyone whose been reading this blog knows Family Guy is not my type of show, but if it is yours, that’s okay.).

  • I use a certain season salt from Redmond Sea Salts that I just love but a couple of months ago I couldn’t buy it on Amazon anymore. It felt like the toilet paper crisis all over again. I even went to their site. The salt was out of stock there. I couldn’t imagine there had been a rush on salt during lockdown but since people are cooking more at home, maybe there had been. Anyhow, last week the company had the salt in again so I ordered a couple of canisters to make sure I can have it for awhile. Now that that issue has been resolved we have to figure out why we can’t find paper plates anywhere anymore. I told my husband to load up on the toilet paper just in case. By the way, I am purposely not telling you which season salt it is. I want to be sure I can get it when I want it again. *wink*

  • All the leaves are almost off all of our trees and I don’t like it. I don’t like naked trees. I prefer they put their clothes on. That’s right. I’m that big of a prude. Plus I know it means snow is right around the corner.

  • Is the actor on Murdock Mysteries wearing eyeliner? I believe he is.

  • When Erin at Still Life, With Cracker Crumbs mentiond she was watching Sherlock, it reminded that I think Benedict Cumberbatch is the best television Sherlock. The best television movie series (from the 1980s) Sherlock is Jeremy Brett. Both portrayals of him explored his darker side and his opium addiction and were acted by superb, high quality actors.

  • Due to a variety of factors, my family and I haven’t been in a real church in a pretty long time. My son’s impression of the service we attended a couple of weeks ago went like this: “First you had the guy who kept repeating himself to get the service to last until noon (he didn’t), then you had you and Grandma doing a drug deal with her trying to give you money (it was for a book that a member of the church had bought), and you trying to give me whatever snakeoil you had in your purse (it was essential oil and I was trying to help him wake up by sniffing it.).”

These are my random thoughts for the week. What are some of your random thoughts? Let me know in the comments.

Randomly Thinking: Pets are trying to kill us and are cats inherhently evil? I say, yes.

Welcome to my weekly Randomly Thinking post where I share random thoughts that pop into my head throughout the week. Enter at your own risk

  • You know what’s great about adopting an extra cat? Instead of having two animals who want to kill me, I now have three. Seriously, why do they always walk in front of me while I am trying to walk? On Sunday my son was running with our dog when she took his legs right out from under him. She looked delighted when his face bounced off the leaf-covered ground.
  • In my Sunday Bookends post, which I posted on Monday this week, I wrote George Elliott’s run-on sentences reminded me of George Steinbeck. Of course I know his name is John Steinbeck and I have corrected that in the post. Must be George was on my mind because I’ve been slogging through Silas Marner. Seriously, as I am getting into it, it’s not actually that bad. I feel bad for making fun of it Sunday. It helps that I’ve found an Irish man reading it on Youtube and it’s somehow making it more entertaining for me because he does all the voices and offers inflections that I wouldn’t have added myself while reading it.
  • I have a friend whose dad has been dead for 18 years and she received an application for a ballot for him in the mail. The creepy thing is, she and her mom have moved since he died. I don’t even know how the election office figured out where to mail it. This election is going to be a mess, we all know that. I’m stocking up on extra supplies now. I made my husband buy extra toilet paper the other day because I told him there is going to be a rush on it again. We already can’t find paper plates. He went into Wal-mart the other day to buy some for us and the shelf was completely empty. It looked like the toilet paper shelves in March and April.
  • I picked up a book I had reserved at the library last week, excited to get a book for free to read, then remembered how nervous library books make me because I’m always afraid I’ll get something on the book or damage it somehow. Now I carry the book around in the bag the library gave me, only taking it out to read and then shoving it right back in the bag.
  • I was so glad to hear last week that so many people also mistake random yard displays or other items outside their windows as a person and have a near panic attack. My favorite had to be from Heather Dawn who said she thought her dripping sewer tank was a bear rummaging outside her house and she had to run to her house from her hot tub, without her towel. Her husband was laughing at her while she ran and it sounded so much like something that would happen with my husband and I. At least (hopefully) Heather wasn’t completely naked.
  • Keith Oberman. So. Yeah. He’s lost it.
  • Sean Hannity. So. Yeah. He’s lost it.
  • I’m not a big fan of political commentators in general. Can you tell?
  • Our adult cat likes to be outside — all the time. I don’t mind, except when she runs outside in the rain and one of my children hear her crying an hour later and cry “Oh my gosh! You left her out in the rain?! The poor thing!” I’m pretty sure she knows exactly what she is doing when she ignores me while I try to get her back in the house after she has slipped out while it is raining. She knows that wet fur will later be her key to snatching the attention away from the new kitten as the children fawn over her and dry her off with towels and make sure her food dish is full. After all, their mother cruely left that poor cat out in the rain. Right? Is it any wonder I believe that cats are inherhently evil?
  • One nice thing about homeschooling my son is that I’m learning a lot about subjects I never learned in school. This week we are learning about the Hitittes, which are a group of people mentioned in the Bible and many other historical documents. According to Wikapedia, “The Hitittes are: ere an Anatolian people who played an important role in establishing an empire centered on Hattusa in north-central Anatolia around 1600 BC. This empire reached its height during the mid-14th century BC under Šuppiluliuma I, when it encompassed an area that included most of Anatolia as well as parts of the northern Levant and Upper Mesopotamia.”
  • Sometimes I ask my husband to pick me up chocolate at the store and when he brings it in the house we have to conduct an exchange that looks a lot like a drug deal. He smuggles it to me so the children don’t see it, carefully hiding it against his body and sliding it to me when they aren’t in the room or their backs are turned. If we don’t do this, the little vultures will inhale it before I get any. Once it’s safely in my posession, I stash it deep in my purse or in a cupboard, high up where my kids won’t think to look, so that I can savor it over time. The only problem with this is that I have to wait for the kids to leave the vicinity of where I hid the goods so I can sample it. Most recently I hid chocolate on a high shelf in a cupboard in the kitchen. There are two problems with this: 1) my children are always near or in the kitchen and 2) I’m very short and have to use a stool or chair to get to the shelf so I’m always afraid that while I’m climbing up I’m going to fall and break a bone and have to tell a doctor what I was doing when I broke it. I suppose there are worse thingsI could say than “I was climbing to get chocolate.” At least it won’t be “I was climbing to get to my stash of cocoaine.”
  • I am really enjoy Mama’s Empty Nest’s posts about the lighthouses she has visited with her family over the years. This week she wrote about one in Assateague near Chincoteague Island. Every since reading Misty of Chincoteague, I have wanted to visit there and see the wild horses. Maybe someday. My husband’s boss visits there every summer or autumn in his camper. Maybe one year I will smuggle myself in. I’m glad I didn’t go with them this year, however, since while they were there, the remenants of a hurricane hit the island. Luckily they survived the craziness and it provided Dave with a very entertaining column for the following week.

So, those are my random thoughts for the week. I’d love to hear some of yours in the comments.

Randomly Thinking: The school papers are multiplying like rabbits and other random tidbits that spilled out of my head this week

Welcome to my weekly Randomly Thinking post where I share random thoughts that pop into my head throughout the week. Enter at your own risk.

  • I looked at the “writers” community in Instagram earlier today. All I can say is I’m glad I never wrote a six stanza poem about my period when I was 20. Good grief and good gravy.
  • There are school papers everywhere in my house and when I pick some up to put away, I turn around and there are even more. I swear they are getting married and making new little school paper babies when I’m not looking and they’ve trained my daughter’s craft supplies to do the same.
  • Sometimes, when I see it out of the corner of my eye, I think the fall display in our side yard, made of corn stalks, is a man and I have a mini-panic attack. Does that make me weird? Sad? I know. Just don’t tell me it does.
  • Funny Bablyon Bee headline: October on Pace to Be Three Years Long. I’m sure this will be true for us Americans, thanks to election season.
  • I have discovered that some modern writers in Christian fiction are good at social media and being “out in the public eye” but they’re really not that great of a writer/author. Ouch. I hope that won’t be me as I continue to try to improve writing. A little smoke and mirrors works for these writers, though. They have a cult following. In some ways it reminds me of Stephen King.
  • After reading some of these authors, I have decided I’m going to start moving away from the strict romance genre because some of the tropes are just ridiculous and make the books predictable. I have a possible trope planned for my latest and now I’m pondering how to change it so it isn’t so Hallmark-movie-predictable-plot-gagfest. I like Hallmark movies, don’t get me wrong, but they do all have about the same plot lines.
  • My dog barks at everything. Every. Thing. A cat in the yard next door, the UPS man, the mail lady, a dog barking across town, a leaf blowing in the wind, a door closing upstairs, a door closing downstairs, a person talking on the neighbor’s porch. She’s so jumpy I’m thinking of giving her some of the CBD oil I’ve been using to calm my nerves.
  • My son is obsessed with Minecraft. I find myself writing my books in my head when he talks to me about it, but I do try very hard to focus so he knows I care about the things he cares about. I am interested. It is just the game is so detailed and has so many components to how you can create with it, it makes my head swim.
  • So many of the sitcoms of the ‘80s had seriously depressing back stories. Abandoned children, dead parents, drug-addicted parents or siblings. Dang. What’s up with that?

I’m seriously looking forward to season two of The Chosen. If you have not yet watched season one, you can find the app on Android or iOS devices under The Chosen or you can visit their site.

  • This week a woman said Trump 2020 on a video I was watching, but I thought she said Psalm 20:20 so I looked up the verse. Even though it hit me later she’d actually said Trump 2020, I thought the verse was fitting for this year.

psalm of David. May the LORD answer you when you are in distress; may the name of the God of Jacob protect you. May he send you help from the sanctuary and grant you support from Zion. … We will shout for joy when you are victorious and will lift up our banners in the name of our God.

So those are my random thoughts for this week. What are your random thoughts? Let me know in the comments! Last week I asked this and Alicia’s random thought was: “How effective are the masks if I can still smell the old people’s “toots” when I’m cutting their hair at the nursing home?!” So…there’s that.

Randomly Thinking: Week of September 27

You’ll notice this week that it’s all starting to get to me by a couple snippy random thoughts. Bear with me. I just need a bit of a vent then I should be okay. Luckily I had some funny thoughts too the last couple of weeks.

I think selfies with a face mask are pointless. There, I said it. How do we know who is behind the mask, both literally and figuratively?

  • I guess my mom and I are reading too many romances on Kindle Unlimited because I keep getting ads for these cheesy, ridiculous cliche romance novels on the front of my Kindle. It’s always some shirtless buff man and he’s always “the bad boy” who “she wants to make good.” Good grief. This is why women don’t have realistic expectations for relationships. They read too man romance novels where the woman actually changes the man. That’s not reality folks. Escapism is good, but those type of books make me want to facepalm everytime I see them.

My dad is 35 years older than me and he has unending energy. I wish he could bottle it up and give me some. He and my son went for a bike ride in the hills of Pennsylvania, picked up an old couch for my brother, made several stops, got home late and the next morning my dad was up at the crack of dawn, ready to go and do more. It’s exhausting just watching him some days

  • My adult cat is like a moody teeanger, spending much of her day glaring at us all. My kitten is like a speed addict – bouncing all over the walls and furniture and then crashing hard when she comes down from her high.
  • I asked my husband to edit my novella (Quarantined). I told him to feel free to fully edit it (like for content) and not just copy edit it (like for typos and grammatical errors). It came back with words, lines, and sections scribbled out. Ouch. Next time I’m telling him to refrain from going into full-on editor mode (which used to be his day job). Seriously, I’m really excited for him to actually help me tighten up my work. I hope he will do it with The Farmer’s Daughter too.

  • There is nothing more depressing than seeing a photo from my local library with the aisles roped off with signs that say “Do not enter.” Heartbreaking. I miss being able to look at and pick out books on my own.
  • I don’t think a lot of 6-year olds talk like mine. “I just love these pants! They are so lightweight and soft and comfortable.” Lightweight?!

I think one of the worst ways to combat racism is to tell people that marrying outside their race is “a betrayal to their race” or mocking people for adopting children outside their race. It really feels like some people are trying to drag us backwards back into the early 1960s. Jesus, come quickly. We’re not improving. We are getting worse.

  • I’m addicted to watching reaction videos to Marc Martel performing Queen songs. It’s so much fun to see first-time reactions to his voice and how he sounds so much like Freddie Mercury. This was a new one from this summer and the look of delight on the man’s face was fun to watch.
  • I didn’t watch any news for three days for my birthday weekend and continued into the next week and it was wonderful. Our world really is a dumpster fire right now so I extended it another few days. I like my head in the sand since I can’t trust the media to tell me the truth anymore. This video explains how I feel about ALL national media right now (yes, Fox and CNN and everyone else).

I had no idea that the author George Eliot was actually a woman named Mary Ann Evans until two weeks ago. In related news: I was never assigned a George Eliot book to read in high school or college. I did however have to read 1984, Hiroshima, and The Awakening.

So what are your random thoughts for the week? Let me know in the comments.