Gettin’ potted …

Having cats in the house can make raising potted plants a bit challenging.

IMG_0152My cats liked to eat and/or play with house plants. Their favorite targets were peace lilies and violets but any old kind of plant would do in a pinch. They did not, however, mess with ficus, which is why I have two 7-foot-tall beauties, grown from sprouts. Any other kind of plant, though, was fair game.

IMG_0159Both Ollie and Emily passed in the last couple of years. I adored them (even when they were being evil) and miss them terribly.

The house felt kind of empty without them (I’m just not ready for more lovable furry creatures) so I decided to get a peace lily. That led to a finger leaf philodendren, which led to a croton, then a spider plant.

I think it’s beginning to get out of hand 

IMG_0154They’re all here in my home office, keeping me company on the days I work at home—and not making a single mess anywhere.

No more drifts of fuzzy hair under the furniture, no spills around the water bowl, no water bowl. Ah, the joys of no litter box.

On the flip side, there’s also no snuggling or purring or leg rubbing.



Regrets and reprieves

Ever wonder about what might have been?  I don’t very often but in the last few weeks have indulged in a romanticized trip down memory lane.

A friend from college recently mentioned via Facebook that a mutual friend from back then wasn’t doing very well. You see, the mutual friend was tucked way back in a cubbyhole in my brain as “the one that got away.” It’s a really long story and I won’t torture you with the details except to say that I always thought it was my own fault. I’ve carried around regret for years and, from time to time, wondered what might have been—until my friend and I took our conversation offline (yes, people do still have conversations outside of Facebook) and I learned more.

You see, I’ve always believed in fate, that things happen for a reason. Maybe not the things I want, much less the reason I want them, or when for that matter, but there is always a reason. As a result, I’ve pretty much strolled through life going with gut instinct. I learned early on that over-thinking big decisions leads me down the wrong path. Doesn’t matter what the decision is about. Whether it’s to pick up and move across the country or what color car to buy, if I over think it, it does not work out well for me. (I still, to this day, can’t fathom why I bought that gray car. I hated it. I hate gray. Yet, it seemed like such a good idea at the time.)

I digress.

Hearing more about our friend, and how he’s conducted his life, brought an end to my little excursion down memory lane. You see, it turns out that if the “one that got away” hadn’t, I would have gotten what I wanted at the time, but would have regretted it year after year after year. That regretful reality would have been so much worse that my regretful “what might have been” illusion.

Which leads me to reprieve.

From where I sit now, it looks like that fateful day, regretful though it was at the time, was my reprieve from a lifetime of disillusion.

Moving forward

This happy camper’s big decision today is whether to go with dusting first or running the vacuum. H-m-m-m, my gut says read my new book.


Life is weird sometimes …

Out of the blue

There you are, wandering along having a good day and, wham, right into your email inbox comes a message from someone in your past. Someone you never expected to hear from again. Ever.

So, what do you do? Do you respond? Do you want to reconnect with that person?

If not, why? Did he or she do you wrong?

If you do want to reconnect, why? Has time faded your memory of the reality of the past relationship? Was it a positive relationship? If so, why did it expire? Was it just an “all good things must come to and end” kind of deal?

Was it a personal relationship? Or, was it a business contact? A former coworker, teacher, mentor, neighbor, friend?

Whatever it was, there is a reason for why it ended, and it was probably a pretty good one.

So, why stir it up again?

What’s in it for you?

Is it just curiosity?

The chance to see how that person has changed? Is he/she still as interesting, as thought-provoking, as entertaining, as relevant?

Won’t know until you click “reply.” Go ahead. You know you want to.

Today’s question

Is there someone from your past that you’d like an opportunity to reconnect with? Who is it? Why do you want that chance? How will you use it if you get it?

Goodbye Fred

Our reliable old friend is gone.

Fred was always there when needed, day-in and day-out for 18 long years — he lived with me for eleven years and then with my daughter for seven. Sure, he had a few mishaps here and there but he just kept coming back strong, dependable, always on course, never-failing to amuse, eyes forward, always between the lines.

Ah, the memories …

There was the time we got lost out in the boonies.

Then there was that incident with the milkshake. (Chocolate milkshake spilled in Jeep, not pretty.)

Fred, you were such a good sport that time we loaded you up with mulch. (In bags but still smelly.)

And, the Christmas trees — I’ll never be able to smell pine without thinking of you, Fred.

Good times. Good times.

We mourn the loss of Fred, old reliable Fred, and cherish the time we had together.

Goodbye Fred and don’t forget to write!


Hello, new kid on the block!

Wish it was mine, but it’s my daughter’s.

Sniff, sniff.

(She’s such a copy cat!)

Then again, she now has car payments and I don’t!


“… we’re goin’ crazy and we’re goin’ today …”

It’s time to confess.

I have a problem.

October 2010, 18 long months ago, I started listening to Leon Russell’s CD Retrospective — and I can’t seem to stop. My ears just can’t seem to get enough of the master of space and time.

Now, this isn’t necessarily a bad thing.

Crazy weird?


Can’t help it.

I’ve tried weaning myself from Leon’s music – multiple times — and I’ve even managed to for a day or so then it’s back to Leon. I have a whole slew of CD’s from which to choose but I keep coming back to Leon.

I’ve tried everything. Nora Jones lasted for almost a whole CD and I made it all the way through a Bare Naked Ladies CD. That was in December of 2010. Since then, I’ve tried Dan Fogelberg, The Eagles, Bob Seger, Cake, Kenny Wayne Sheppard, Eric Clapton, Led Zeppelin, America, The Beatles, and even Janis Joplin. Then, finally, about 6 months ago, I brought out the big gun — John Fogerty. It lasted for about 3 days then it was back to Leon.

Is this a misguided effort to recapture my youth?

Don’t know. Don’t care.

Have you ever heard Leon’s Jumping Jack Flash? No? What’s stopping you? Try it here:, you’ll like it. (341,555 views, and counting.)

I  managed to listen to Leon’s 2006 CD, Angel in Disguise, for about a month in the summer of 2011. (I especially liked Honky Tonk Eyes.) But then it was back to vintage Leon.

I can’t stop. I have a problem. I need help. Sad, but true.

It got so bad my daughter tried to stage an intervention. Well, sort of. Actually, she just refuses to let me play Leon in the car when she’s with me. Not much help at all.

Jump forward to this week. I am determined to break this habit! (I would say cold turkey but finding the link above made me forced me to watch the video. Sorry. Couldn’t be helped.) I started out my commute this week with John Fogerty’s A Long Road Home. I love this CD. I’m a huge fan of Jon Fogerty and CCR. The title of this post is a line from his song, Rockin’ All Over the World. I love it!

But, the big question is — how long can my ears stay away from Leon and his drawl?

In case you’re wondering, Masquerade is my favorite Leon Russell song. I know everybody else likes A Song for You, but I’m hooked on Masquerade. Can’t get enough of it.

Maybe it’s a sickness. Maybe not.

Maybe I’m just in a musical rut.

Can John Fogerty get me out of the Leon Russell ditch?

We’ll see.

I just watched Leon on youtube playing Jambalaya on the Bayou, with Glen Campbell on guitar.

I am so in over my head!