You are currently browsing the category archive for the ‘about me’ category.

I suspect I’ll continue to share photos & tidbits here (as well as on my two blogger sites) from time to time … but I publish more regularly at my NEW self hosted blog called Giraffe Journal and my Labyrinth Journal website so I hope you’ll visit me at either (or both) as time permits.

Scroll down for Shadow Shot Sunday and more …

Just these two roses
blooming on the parkway now …
and pink Azaleas



Click to embiggen for better viewing and for
others participating in Pink Saturday and Today’s Flowers

Potted plant shadows
playing on my patio …
amidst STRANGE weather!

Click to embiggen for better viewing and for others
participating in Shadow Shot Sunday

“Smile, breathe and go slowly.” Thich Nhat Hanh

gratitudelogo-daisies

givingthankschallenge-southbreeze

South Breeze Farm hosted the Giving Thanks Challenge and I participated at Small Reflections in November of 2008 and decided to continue indefinitely … generating the following list one day at a time throughout the month of August. I’ve decided to transfer the lists at the end of each month from Small Reflections to Happily Retired Gal … just because. Click to see previous lists already published here.

1. my Explorer is ready to hit the road again next week after having some maintenance work completed today.

2. for a productive morning at home followed by a pleasant afternoon with my sister ending with ‘fish tacos’ at Duke’s … delicious day & dinner!

3. the sun’s breaking through earlier again this morning after a couple of overcast days here at the beach.

4. a lovely lunch with a good friend, the kindness of strangers, learning to use Skype today and helping someone else get started with Skype too.

5. that I discovered and am participating in a Festival of Change at Online Clarity.

6. I watered the yard deeply in anticipation of the trip and that my neighbor will feed Ms. Kitty in my absence.

7. I’m packed & ready to drive to Phoenix, AZ tomorrow with my sister where we’ll spend the next 6 days.

8. that Molly loves to visit Camp Ilene when I travel & can’t take her with me … for 4 additional free Buttermilk Spice muffins from Mimi’s Cafe to bring with us … and that my sister wanted to stop at the Cabazon outlets yesterday because I found an excellent ‘deal’ on a lovely white bag at the Brighton store.

9. to be attending the Your Purpose Summit with Baeth Davis this weekend even though I’m thoroughly confused at the end of the first day’s sessions.

10. Barb encouraged me to attend the VIP party last night even though I felt overwhelmed because this morning clarity has come through my journaling and I’m ready for what comes next.

11. for yesterday’s ‘private analysis of my hand’ along with the many people I’ve met who have helped me figure out my ‘purpose’ and the book I’m going to publish with the help of the people at Vervante.

12. for some ‘down time’ Sunday afternoon to relax around & swim in the pool at the resort & spa after the event ended … finally!

13. for the delightful & surprising ways things fell together on the drive back from Phoenix. It’s good to be home again.

14. for emerging clarity about the books I’m going to publish & the business I’ll begin based on them.

15. all 8 of the domain names I wanted were available at GoDaddy so I bought them all … and I’ve connected with a website designer I met last weekend who I’m hoping will develop my site with me so I can devote my attention to other things.

16. Michelle at GoDaddy ‘tech support’ called this morning and helped me set up ‘LabyrinthJournal.com’ to be hosted at WordPress as a ‘site under construction’ with an email attached to it for ‘business’ purposes clear signs of progress.

17. for a good night’s sleep and breakfast out with a friend this morning since I’ve not yet gotten myself to a grocery store since returning home from Arizona on Monday.

18. I’ve created a new place to playfully share stories online called Giraffe Journals and hope you’ll want to check it out & play with me there … just because.

19. a friend told me about the Surf City Surf Dog contest at Dog Beach this morning … it was great fun and I took lots of photos to share, but for now … here’s a ‘kewl’ YouTube video is from the Los Angeles Times:

20. for visitors to my new self-hosted WordPress blog, Giraffe Journal, who left supportive, enthusiastic comments as I step out into this virtual world to be known … just as I am.

21. for all the wonderful resources coming my way to help with this huge transition in my life.

22. to know I’m changing in small but significant ways each day as I step into my future … pursuing my purpose passionately!

23. I’m one of the first six to sign up for the six-month Get Your Book Done Live training with Christine Klosur & Lynne Klippel. That means I receive a free one-hour ‘coaching’ call as a bonus in addition to big savings on the cost by paying in full up front!

24. for people like Marianne Williamson who inspire millions to step up & take meaningful actions … making a difference. I highly recommend watching this interview on ‘mashable tv’ that won’t seem to appear here (as it did at Small Reflections) no matter what I do, but (fortunately) DOES show up when I click the preceding ‘interview’ link.

25. for a pleasant lunch & visit at Z’ Tejas with a friend this afternoon … sharing a delicious enchilada entree & yummy skillet cobbler dessert!

26. for ‘Rick’ at GoDaddy tech support who exhibited great patience and resourcefulness in assisting me with ‘access’ issues at my new self-hosted Giraffe Journal site last night after I changed the URL earlier in the day.

27. for a lovely afternoon at the Lyceum Theater viewing ‘Alice’ followed by dinner at Mimi’s Cafe in Newport Beach with friends yesterday. Life is good indeed!

28. I spent the morning on my front patio writing & occasionally visiting with passers-by while Molly played with a new neighborhood puppy named Guapo.

29. to get my hair cut today 😉

30. for the Women on Purpose Online Telesummit … the first 3 calls have been filled with useful information!

Thank you Joy

FYI – My previous Gratitude Lists can be found here at Happily Retired Gal, my WordPress site. It is my intention to keep this ‘Daily Gratitude List’ in my sidebar at Small Reflections indefinitely because I believe it makes sense to focus on what’s right in our lives regularly. Click for:
2010 Lists –September, August, July, June, May, April, March, February, January
2009 Lists – December, November, October, September, August, July, June, May, April, March, February, January
2008 Lists – December, November

Thought for Today
“God gave you a gift of 86,400 seconds today. Have you used one to say ‘thank you?'” William A. Ward

Click for comments at the TOP of the post under the title, rather than at the bottom ;–)

I suspect I’ll continue to share photos & tidbits here (as well as on my two blogger sites) from time to time … but I have a NEW self hosted Website called Giraffe Journals Just for the JOY of it, and I hope you’ll visit me there as time permits.

With apologies, belatedly I share …

A wild rose bush
climbs around the old palm tree
trunk in my front yard …

producing tiny
multi-colored short-lived blooms
you can see below

Click to embiggen for better viewing and for
others participating in Pink Saturday, Today’s Flowers,
Mellow Yellow Monday, Finding Beauty and Just for the JOY of it!

I invite all to participate and
spread the word far and wide …

Thought for Today

“When you arise in the morning, I invite you to think of one thing. What is going to change today? And what part will you play in creating that change, in being the conscious cause of it?” Neale Donald Walsh

Click for comments at the TOP of the post under the title, rather than at the bottom ;–)

I don’t have a clue
what this plant is called, but it
captures attention

reminding me of
things I’ve taken for granted …
Daily Miracles

when I slow my pace
enough to observe our world
clarity evolves

relearning to trust
intuition from within
guides us on our path

with intention I
move ahead with purpose and
grow my gifts to share

Click to embiggen for better viewing and for
others participating in Pink Saturday, Today’s Flowers,
Finding Beauty and Just for the JOY of it!

Thought for Today
“Miracles happen every day and people need to know this … they can look for miracles in their lives. The Good New is — there’s still good news.” Mary Ellen

Click for comments at the TOP of the post under the title, rather than at the bottom ;–)

This week’s Yard Art
and Earth Hour information
are in the next post …
Scroll down for Looking at the Sky, (belated) Midweek Blues
Pink Saturday and Today’s Flowers herein with my FAVES


1. Although he arrived very late (and by himself without his usual two helpers) on Wednesday, my gardener took time to plant my birthday ‘Veteran’s Honor’ rose bush as promised. I’m hoping it will do as well as the other roses I have growing in my yard.


2. My parkway is awash with color, brightening the neighborhood and my spirits. I feel so blessed to live here in Southern California near the Pacific Ocean where Spring arrives early, and it’s a joy to share such views on my blog for those in colder climates still waiting for the weather to warm up.


lookingatthesky

3. Our skies have been variable as clouds drift through the area but there have plenty of beautiful BLUES above like these:



4. I happened upon these lovely pink blossoms at Bella Terra in Huntington Beach while hanging out with my sister this past week. I’m not sure what they are but wonder if they might be Rhododendron. What do you think?




5. Finally … my 18-55mm lens for my Nikon D60 is back in my possession and working the way it’s supposed to! More than a month ago the Vibration Reduction went ‘wonky’ (shortly after I had it cleaned at my local ‘repair’ shop under the Ritz Camera warranty). They sent it to Nikon and when it was returned with the VR fixed, the lens wouldn’t take photos at the ‘infinity’ setting … so the repair shop sent it back to Nikon (with a ‘rush’ order). When it was returned in a couple of week with a note that nothing was done to it … my local guy sent it back once again with the instructions highlighted. All this took considerable time. Of course I’ve had my camera with the Tamron 28-300mm lens, but I’ve missed the smaller lens and am glad to have it back.

Click any image to embiggen for better viewing
and for others participating in Friday’s FAVE Five,
Midweek Blues, Looking at the Sky, Pink Saturday, and Today’s Flowers

Thought for Today
“And in the end it’s not the years in your life that count. It’s the life in your years.”
Abraham Lincoln

Click for comments at the TOP of the post under the title, rather than at the bottom ;–)

lookingatthesky


1. Although it finally cooled off yesterday, we’ve had amazingly warm weather the past few days here in Southern California at the beach and I’ve been able to take advantage of it … walking with my camera in hand several days.

Click to embiggen for better viewing
and if you missed them, I shared some
‘kewl’ pelican shots at Small Reflections
(see #5 of 13 things on my list)


2. While celebrating my sister’s birthday recently (sharing a delicious frozen dessert with nuts), I bit down on something hard. Thinking it was a piece of shell, I retrieved it from my mouth only to discover it was metal and looked suspiciously like a filling. Fortunately it wasn’t (a visit to my dentist confirmed that it did indeed LOOK like a filling but I didn’t have one missing) so I don’t have to have any work done on my teeth. At the urging of a friend whose husband used to manage a restaurant, I returned to share the incident with the manager. Upon checking with the head chef, we learned their ice cream containers have metal fasteners … and the piece in question was part of that. As a thank you for bringing the problem to their attention, they’re mailing me a gift certificate … adding an unexpected bonus to the experience.


3. Last Friday I drove by Costco for gasoline and went inside with my sister who wanted to buy some bananas. I stopped to look at laptops and ended up buying this …

a Sony Vaio (running Windows 7) … appearing here alongside the Dell Inspiron 1720 (running Vista) that I’ve had nothing but trouble with since I bought it in July of 2008. I’m working with Dell Tech Support to resolve continuing issues since it’s covered for 4 years by an extended warranty … and I’m delighted that it’s no longer crashing regularly, but when disconnected from the power supply, the screen still becomes so dim as to be unreadable … making it essentially non-functional away from my desk unless I carry the power supply with me and find an outlet wherever I go. I’ve suggested a larger more powerful battery … and there’s been talk of a new monitor. Hopefully I’ll find out more today when Sanjay calls me around 11am. In the meantime, I’ve got a new ‘toy’ to keep me connected and it’s pretty kewl. The software I own and use regularly with Vista (Microsoft Office and Photoshop Elements) seem to run just fine so far even though it’s a 64-bit machine running Windows 7.


4. The local Adult School is offering classes in Windows 7 and I’ve signed up … changing from the class I’d intended to take to this one figuring I could use a bit of help making this transition. In addition, I enjoyed a delightful afternoon with friends yesterday visiting over lunch in Laguna before seeing The Second City in Can You be more Pacific at the Laguna Playhouse. Before heading home, we purchased advance tickets for a May performance of Hershey Felder in ‘Beethoven As I Knew Him’ … we hear it’s quite entertaining.


5. Once I finish with Sanjay from Dell Tech Support this morning, I’m spending this afternoon with my sister once again. We’re trying to maximize the time we have left before she and her husband hit the road again on April 15th. I want to share one more view from this week containing reflections of the sky and the beach in the windows of this Lifeguard Tower on the pier … pretty nifty, eh? Here’s wishing everyone a wonderful weekend!

Thought for Today
“Parents can only give good advice or put them on the right paths, but the final forming of a person’s character lies in their own hands.” Anne Frank

Click for comments at the TOP of the post under the title, rather than at the bottom ;–)

ALMOST

Beach town … Surf City
shares it’s history in this
Surfing Museum

today’s temp’ratures
will reach the low 80s and
draw more people here


Click to embiggen for better viewing and for
others participating in Almost Wordless Wednesday,
Watery Wednesday, Outdoor Wednesday, Window Views,
Midweek Blues and Wordful Wednesday

Thought for Today
“Life is like riding a bicycle. To keep your balance you must keep moving.” Albert Einstein

Click for comments at the TOP of the post under the title, rather than at the bottom ;–)

Scroll down for
Pink Saturday, Today’s Flowers, & Color Carnival
and a brief personal update

one photograph for
Window Views, Reflections and
Sunday Shadow Shots

Click to embiggen for better viewing
and others participating in
Weekend Reflections, Shadow Shot Sunday and Window Views

Brief Update about my Computer Issues

I’m pleased to report (to those following my ‘computer challenges’ lately) that after spending several hours on the phone with Dell Tech Support yesterday afternoon, things seem to be working better already. There have been NO BLUE SCREEN CRASHES today and the promised replacement keyboard arrived in today’s mail. THAT was FAST!!!

I’ve removed the old ‘sticky’ one and installed the ‘refurbished’ keyboard. All the keys seem to work normally, though the ‘feel’ is a bit different. I suspect I’ll get used to it quickly and I’m quite relieved to not have to go back and FIX words any longer.

I don’t know the name
of these bushes with dainty
pink blossoms … if YOU

have an idea what
they might be please let me know
below in comments


colorful blooms from
South Coast Plaza Mall near the
door to Z’Tejas

Click to embiggen for better viewing
and for others participating in Pink Saturday,
Today’s Flowers, and Color Carnival

Thought for Today
“You have the opportunity to be a powerful influence on the lives of other people, no matter your position in life.” V.J. Smith

Click for comments at the TOP of the post under the title, rather than at the bottom ;–)

Mary the teach at Work of the Poet
has asked bloggers to share Yard Art on Thursdays …
Lots of people who live near the beach
in Southern California ‘decorate’ their yards
(often in unique ways) so I’ll have a steady supply!
Here’s MY first contribution …
(NOT from my yard)


Click to embiggen and for others sharing Yard Art

givingthankschallenge-southbreeze

South Breeze Farm hosted the Giving Thanks Challenge and I participated at Small Reflections in November of 2008 and decided to continue indefinitely … generating the following list one day at a time throughout the month of August. I’ve decided to transfer the lists at the end of each month from Small Reflections to Happily Retired Gal … just because. Click to see previous lists already published here.


1. the transfer of my sidebar gratitude list to Happily Retired Gal went a bit smoother this month.

2. my computer cooperated and allowed me to do some catching up on blog visits today … I really appreciate folks who make the entire post available in the feed (rather than just a few lines) because I actually get to SEE everything and can click over to comment periodically 😉

3. to Hootin’ Anni and Lori E (of Family Trees May Contain Nuts) for sharing Valentines with their visitors … reminding me to do likewise! I’ve added mine to the top of my sidebar (here too) .  I invite you to ‘snag’ a copy to enjoy if you wish … just right click on the image to save it to your computer.
[VALgiftHootinAnni.gif]

4. for a pleasant outing with my sister today … and a ‘fix’ for my Blogger photo upload problem.

5. to stay home most of this rainy day … leaving only briefly to assist a friend’s sister resolve some camera and computer problems.

6. that the two small leaks in my living room ceiling (from the deck off my upstairs bedroom) seem minor … especially as I watch the devastation caused by mudslides in the La Canada-Flintridge area and problems created by the record snowfall in the Mid-Atlantic east-coast states.

7. Molly & I went for a LONG walk today … enjoying the dry weather 😉

8. for another day of clear weather and the opportunity to connect with friends for lunch to catch up with one another.

9. today’s rain has been the gentle steady drizzily kind.

10. my pansies have survived the rain and some of my bulb shoots have already started to bloom … earlier than ever. I’m still trying to identify the pretty white blossoms shared previous.

11. for memories of my mom on the anniversary of her birth.

12. I’ve cleared off space on my DVR to record the Olympic broadcasts so I can watch them as time permits.

13. I’ll be spending the day with my sister (and possibly a good friend if she’s feeling up to it) starting with a camera class on ‘lighting’ at the sole remaining
Ritz Camera store in the Orange County area this morning then letting the rest of the day unfold spontaneously.

14. I had canned food for Ms Kitty when I ran out of dry food w/o time to get to the store. Methinks SHE was happy too 😉

15. Shen & Zhao have returned to participate in the Winter Olympics one last time … they skated beautifully Sunday night.

16. that (although they made some mistakes in their long program Monday night) Shen & Zhao had enough of a lead from their short program to win the Gold Medal finally on their 4th trip to the Olympics (at the age of 31 & 36) with Pang & Tong taking the silver after they’d just missed the podium (in 4th place) four years ago in Torino. What a night for China!

17. for a good night’s sleep after several ‘restless’ ones.

18. that Evan Lysacek skated two ‘complete programs’ beautifully in Vancouver, won the Gold medal and has handled all the petty ‘controversy’ over the ‘quad’ in men’s skating (stirred up by questions posed by the press to Evgeni Plushenko who seems upset that ignoring changes in scoring didn’t win him a second Gold medal on the strength of his jumps and intimidating bravado) magnificently. As Scott Hamilton & Dick Buttons eloquently point out, the event IS called Figure SKATING for a reason!

19. although things didn’t go exactly as planned … my sister & I spent a delightful afternoon together and I got a $49 refund from REI because the kewl Keen boots I bought there less than two weeks ago at full price were on sale yesterday. Lucky me 😉

20. for sunshine today after last night’s rain … especially since more rain is predicted for Sunday night and possibly throughout the entire week ahead.

21. for morning coffee with half & half 😉

22. that I finally managed to connect to the Internet after my ‘wireless router’ died overnight

23. it’s my 65th birthday and I’ll be celebrating with my sister!

24. that Channel 4 makes actual ‘video replays’ available on its website because for some reason my DVR didn’t record last night’s events so I missed the women’s short programs in Figure Skating (along with whatever else was broadcast). I’m looking forward to catching up as time permits.

25. I managed to fix my DVR so it recorded the Olympic broadcasts to view as time permits.

26. my sister & I celebrated my birthday again … this time at Duke’s as we planned to do (but didn’t) on Tuesday.

27. my neighbor gave me a lovely Veteran’s Honor rose bush for my yard on Friday … a gift from her father who has raised roses for a long time.

28. that even though more ‘wet stuph’ is predicted, yesterday’s rain has stopped for the time being making for lovely Southern California weather all day long.

Thank you Joy

FYI – My previous Gratitude Lists can be found at Happily Retired Gal, my new WordPress site. It is my intention to keep this ‘Daily Gratitude List’ in my sidebar indefinitely because I believe it makes sense to focus on what’s right in our lives regularly. Click for:
2010 Lists – January
2009 Lists – December, November, October, September, August, July, June, May, April, March, February, January
2008 Lists – December, November

Thought for Today
“God gave you a gift of 86,400 seconds today. Have you used one to say ‘thank you?’” William A. Ward

Click for comments at the TOP of the post under the title, rather than at the bottom ;–)

stormy skies above
as we walked out on the pier …
surveying the scene


very different
from the ones I shared last week
at this local beach


just a few people
brave enough to swim, walk, and
lay upon the sand



For Ruby Tuesday
here’s the bright Barefoot Bar sign
and menu outside


My sister likes her fish tacos ‘battered’ …

I prefer mine Cajun style

and THIS is Hula Pie … delicious!

Click for others participating in
My World, Ruby Tuesday,
Outdoor Wednesday, Watery Wednesday, and Midweek Blues

Thought for Today
“Because time itself is like a spiral, something special happens on your birthday each year: The same energy that God invested in you at birth is present once again.”
Menachem Mendel Schneerson

Click for comments at the TOP of the post under the title, rather than at the bottom ;–)

Mellow Yellow Monday
(along with Pink Saturday & Today’s Flowers)
is in the next post


More views from my walk
on Balboa Island
this
weekend with my sis …

Kewl ‘ruby’ brick work,
blossoms, and ‘accents’ on the
yard’s ‘inhabitants’



More ‘rubies’ below …
Cyclamen blossoms I think,
if not mistaken

Click to embiggen for better viewing and for
others participating in My World,
Ruby Tuesday and Outdoor Wednesday

“Smile, breathe and go slowly.” Thich Nhat Hanh

gratitudelogo-daisies

givingthankschallenge-southbreeze

South Breeze Farm hosted the Giving Thanks Challenge and I participated at Small Reflections in November of 2008 and decided to continue indefinitely … generating the following list one day at a time throughout the month of August. I’ve decided to transfer the lists at the end of each month from Small Reflections to Happily Retired Gal … just because. Click to see previous lists already published here.

1. for all the new & old friends in the Blogosphere who visit and leave comments on each of my blogs. Thank you all 😉

2. I managed to successfully transfer my December Gratitude List to Happily Retired Gal this morning on the 4th try. I’m not sure why, but I kept losing my sidebar there this morning … but all’s well that ends well, right? Right!

3. Molly got to play with the 3 pugs (Jake, Alle, & Noah) this morning … see Pug Invasion if you’ve forgotten or missed this post from mid-March.

4. I opted for the extended warranty when I purchased my Nikon D60 & Tamron lens last January at Ritz Camera. I should have them back in less than a week since I chose to drop them off at the camera repair shop this afternoon (rather than the one remaining local Ritz store in Fashion Island) to be cleaned & adjusted (something I was advised to do at least yearly).

5. I found my old Casio Exilim camera and it held a charge, so while I’m experiencing a bit of ‘withdrawal’ without my Nikon,
I have something to use in the meantime.

6. for time to create a mosaic with Monday’s surprise sunrise photos and to publish it at Small Reflections before leaving for class tonight.

7. to be home after spending the day at my sister’s house making 247 tamales (about a hundred more than usual) … I’ll be catching up on blog visits tomorrow and sharing photos from the day soon since she let me use HER camera since mine’s in the shop getting cleaned & adjusted after it’s first year of almost continual use.

8. for a day at home to catch up on blog visits, create multiple ‘tamale and critter mosaics’ then write Haiku reflections to share at Sacred Ruminations as a follow-up to the ‘big day’ of tamale-making.

9. I added to yesterday’s tamale post … (Blogging my Blessings there and providing a bit more info in response to questions). Spending time with my ‘reader’ last week … cleaning house (eliminating blogs no one has posted on in a long time), marking older entries as ‘read’ & reorganizing entries into functional categories is helping me manage time for blog visits more easily already.

10. my sister & her husband met me at the Harbor House Cafe in Sunset Beach for ‘brunch’ this morning. Since my ‘all-in-one’ HP printer still doesn’t work, my BIL is going to scan my sister’s tamale recipe then email it to me so I can share it with those who asked for it.

11. the camera shop called to say my camera & lenses are ready for pickup … HOORAY!

12. for Tuesday with my sister. We had a wonderful time together. I’ve shared ‘fountain photos’ from the Shops at Mission Viejo at Happily Retired Gal.

13. her husband emailed the tamale recipe to me so I could share it with those who asked for it.

14. that I’d saved often while creating my Thursday Thoughts … so that when Mozilla crashed this morning (as it does all too often due to a problem with my wireless card and/or driver that no one seems to be able to find or fix) … I was able to pick up where I left off rather than starting over.

15. for the ‘free ticket’ (worth $10) for a Friday Class at Adult School … (apparently M-W classes got these because of the Monday holidays making the courses shorter than T-Th classes so this was how they ‘evened things up’.
I used it this morning to learn about Facebook. I don’t know that I’ll find time to actually USE the information, but at least I understand how Facebook works now … sort of. LOL

16. we’ll be getting some much needed rain in the coming week. I’m hopeful the folks in the recently burned areas won’t suffer mudslides however.

17. I remembered to answer the Simple Woman’s Daybook questions to share with my Blues & Mosaics at Sacred Ruminations and to publish Macro & Monochrome photos at Happily Retired Gal … so I’m ‘set’ for Monday.

18. my DVR recorded the Day One tennis matches overnight at the Australian Open … so I can watch today as I visit blogs.

19. there were breaks in the rain so Molly & I could get outside for some much needed exercise.

20. for this afternoon’s (much needed) appointment to get my hair cut … and I’m hoping for a break in the weather to drive into Long Beach … then on to my sister’s in Cerritos and back home to feed Molly before my Adult School class tonight at 6pm. I’d kind of like to just stay home in this kind of weather, but I’ll drive carefully and hope for the best.<

21. last night’s class was canceled … (because the HB police asked yesterday afternoon that residents not drive for the next 48 hours unless absolutely necessary ) … so I didn’t have to go out in the storm again … at night.

22. that I took the initiative and drove to the local Social Security office (in the rain) to get my paperwork scanned into my file rather than continue to wait for the ‘secure envelope’ to arrive. Wish I’d done this a week ago!

23. the rain seems to have stopped this afternoon and it’s supposed to be clear on Sunday.

24. the laptop still ‘boots’ after multiple ‘Blue Screen of Death’ crashes this past week … so I’ve had time to back up my recent files & photos before I call Dell again, but the crashes have been frustrating when I try to visit blogs and leave comments!

25. I was able to help my sister get started on a computer related photo project over the phone and still get myself to class last night to learn some kewl new ‘digital media’ techniques.

26. my faulty wireless LAN card & Mozilla let me visit some blogs this morning before crashing …

27. for the ‘kewl’ new skills & techniques presented in tonight’s Digital Media class. Now what I need is time to practice 😉

28. my persistence paid off with Social Security. After spending MANY hours on the phone with multiple calls (asking many questions until I connected with the right person), I finally have my ‘claim number’ for Medicare, allowing me to finish signing up for a ‘supplemental care’ & ‘drug plan’ … so coverage should begin on February 1st (barring any unforseen issues).

29. I rewarded myself for a challenging week dealing with Beaurocracy by spending the day with my sister today and signing up for two ‘review’ Digital Photography classes with her tomorrow … one in the morning & the other in the afternoon.

30. for the Digital Photography 1 & 2 classes at Ritz Camera in Fashion Island letting me get my settings right again … and learning a few new things about the Nikon D60 to practice in the future.

31. to watch Roger Federer play well to win his 16th Major Championship in straight sets against Andy Murray at the Australian Open … regaining that title after losing there the last two years, putting him at #1 again … the first father to win a Major Championship since Andre Agassi did it in 2003.

Thank you Joy

FYI – My previous Gratitude Lists can be found at Happily Retired Gal, my new WordPress site. It is my intention to keep this ‘Daily Gratitude List’ in my sidebar indefinitely because I believe it makes sense to focus on what’s right in our lives regularly. Click for:
2009 Lists – December, November, October, September, August, July, June, May, April, March, February, January
2008 Lists – December, November

Thought for Today
“God gave you a gift of 86,400 seconds today. Have you used one to say ‘thank you?’” William A. Ward

Click for comments at the TOP of the post under the title, rather than at the bottom ;–)

“Smile, breathe and go slowly.” Thich Nhat Hanh

gratitudelogo-daisies

givingthankschallenge-southbreeze

South Breeze Farm hosted the Giving Thanks Challenge and I participated at Small Reflections in November of 2008 and decided to continue indefinitely … generating the following list one day at a time throughout the month of August. I’ve decided to transfer the lists at the end of each month from Small Reflections to Happily Retired Gal … just because. Click to see previous lists already published here.

1. for all I’ve learned about blogging … especially HTML codes that allow me to transfer my gratitude lists to Happily Retired Gal more easily these days.

2. I managed to stay awake all the way through my computer class from 6-9pm last night even though I’d been up since 2am.

3. that (with the information I’ve learned in my ‘Fix Your Own Computer’ class) I’ve managed to speed up my old laptop considerably … and hopefully make the newer one more ‘stable’ (crossing my fingers that I won’t get the ‘Blue Screen of Death’ several times a day any more)

4. for a pleasant ‘catch up’ lunch with a good friend and phone chat with my sister who is gradually headed home for the holidays

5. I attended the wonderful Vanguard University Christmas Concert last night at St. Andrew’s church in Newport Beach … what a glorious way to get me in the holiday mood 😉

6. for my many ‘virtual’ friends sharing their thoughts and photographs in the Blogosphere.

7. it’s RAINING … finally 😉
8. there’s a break in the rainy weather so Molly & I can take a long walk together, but more of the ‘wet stuph’ is on the way.
9. I’ll be getting a new perm this afternoon.

10. I’m registered for 3 new Adult School classes in 2010 with a good friend. It’ll be fun to have this regular time to connect twice weekly for the next few months as we learn more about Photoshop and collages.

11. for another day of light drizzily rain.

12. I was able to share Satsuma tangerines from my sister’s tree with friends and attended a Buon Natatle Party last night … catching up with friends I’ve not seen for many years.

13. I finally figured out (with the help of Google) how to change the letter of my 1TB WD ‘My Book’ drive with the Vista OS after one got accidentally changed (wreaking havoc with the PSE6 ‘organizer’) when I installed a new WD Passport drive to back up photos for safety’s sake.

14. I remembered that today’s the 2nd Monday of the month so I didn’t miss catching up with friends at Retired Ladies Lunch 😉

15. that after spending the day successfully backing up my photos on a WD Passport Drive, finally I managed to create and publish my Almost Wordless Outdoor Watery Wednesday post with photos from the Bolsa Chica Wetlands after the Rain before heading to my Fix Your Own Computer class tonight.

16. that I’m able to access the Internet with my ancient laptop while dealing with connectivity issues on the newer one … even though it’s E X T R E M E L Y
S L O W going to access & comment on blogs!

17. that this afternoon I was SUCCESSFUL finally in getting my newer laptop (a Dell running Vista) to access my encrypted wireless network … so I’ll be able to visit blogs more easily again, however I’m leaving for class soon so those visits will need to wait until tomorrow.

18. for all I’ve learned about fixing my own computer in my Adult School class and that I’ve got the rest of the year off for the holidays!

19. My sister and her husband have returned home and we’ll be able to celebrate Christmas together with extended family!

20. for a delightful day spent with my sister yesterday starting with a delicious meal at Z’Tejas (I’ll share photos another day), followed by a long walk (enough to make my feet hurt) with good conversation, late-afternoon coffee at Starbucks, and topped off with a lovely Christmas concert at the OC Performing Arts Center’s Segerstrom Theater.

21. I created my Christmas cards to send to family & friends.

22. after spending more hours than I care to admit trying to make my printer work, I’ve decided to send New Year’s cards this year in order to cut myself some slack and limit stress.

23. for all those who offered suggestions and/or support as I worked on printer issues … as yet unresolved.

24. to spend the day with family in Hemet … celebrating Christmas Eve with my sister, her husband, their two sons (age 30 & 28), my brother’s widow, their youngest son, his wife, their two daughters (age 5 & almost 4), and their son (age 2).

25. that I woke early enough to visit many of my virtual friends leaving Joyous Christmas wishes before taking Molly for a walk then heading to my sister’s house for traditional strawberry waffles.

26. for a good night’s sleep 😉

27. I may be able to get my belated Christmas cards printed with an OLD Photosmart printer if I can get the driver’s installed & functioning on my laptop running Vista.

28. for last night’s holiday gathering at a dear friend’s house providing the opportunity to connect with folks I’ve not seen in a long time & to meet new people.

29. for glorious ocean views & sunsets 😉

30. this entire day of gentle drizzily rain soaking the soil rather than running off down the street.

31. for good heath during 2009 and the many ‘virtual friends’ I’ve encountered in the Blogosphere.

Thank you Joy

FYI – My previous Gratitude Lists can be found at Happily Retired Gal, my new WordPress site. It is my intention to keep this ‘Daily Gratitude List’ in my sidebar indefinitely because I believe it makes sense to focus on what’s right in our lives regularly. Click for:
2009 Lists – November, October, September, August, July, June, May, April, March, February, January
2008 Lists – December, November

Thought for Today
“God gave you a gift of 86,400 seconds today. Have you used one to say ‘thank you?’” William A. Ward

Click for comments at the TOP of the post under the title, rather than at the bottom ;–)

Scroll down for Ruby Tuesday, Window Views,
and Outdoor Wednesday
I’m experiencing a frustrating ‘snag’ with my HP Photosmart 6180 ‘all-on-one’ printer and haven’t been able to print the Christmas Cards I created to send to family and friends this year. After successfully reconfiguring it to access my newly ‘encrypted’ router, I encountered messages to replace two ink cartridges (yellow & magenta) which I did, but now when I try to print I’m told I need to replace the yellow cartridge or print in black only. I’ve tried three new yellow cartridges … all to no avail. If you think you might be able to help, I’ve included more specifics about the issue in a post at Small Reflections this morning. Please click to help … and you’ll find some more RUBY Christmas Cheer there too.

My world near the beach
simple … relaxed … colorful
Just Joey Roses

not so hurried now
that I am retired from

teaching … sharing life

with Ms Kitty and
Molly who meets visitors

joyfully each day


Click to embiggen for better viewing …

My wider world
has wildfires burning and
watching coverage

on the TV news
generates sadness for all

those affected by

the destructive flames
more than 200 thousand

acres already

4 years without rain
generates unlimited

fuel for wildfires


Click to embiggen for better viewing …

for others participating in My World

and Midweek Blues t00.


“Smile, breathe and go slowly.”  Thich Nhat Hanh

gratitudelogo-daisies

givingthankschallenge-southbreeze

South Breeze Farm hosted the Giving Thanks Challenge and I participated at Small Reflections in November and decided to continue indefinitely … generating the following list one day at a time throughout the month of August.  I’ve decided to transfer the lists at the end of each month from Small Reflections to Happily Retired Gal … just because.  Click to see previous lists already published here.

1. for ‘perfect messages from the Universe’ arriving as needed this morning.

2. for a phone call from my sister this morning … she wanted me to know they’re back in the USA … in North Dakota.

3. for the way I combined Mosaic Monday with Mellow Yellow, Ruby Tuesday, and Midweek Blues … gotta luv multi-tasking and I really like the way that collage turned out.

4. ‘D’ was at home when I called and had time to chat.

5. for attending last night’s free concert in the park with ‘S’ … another enjoyable evening

6. my hair is short again … good to go for another 6 weeks

7. my neighbor told he about the free Ukelele concert down by the pier. Molly & I walked down there with a friend, enjoyed the music, and just got back a little while ago because we decided not to stay for the free movie afterward.

8. for my Florian rachet garden clippers ;–)

9. I got to swim laps last night in a friend’s pool then watched an entertaining funny film.

10. for lunch with the other Retired Gals today ;–)

11. for a morning swim before getting on with the day’s activities and errands.

12. the skies eventually cleared allowing the sun to shine, even though it was almost sunset as that occurred ;–)

13. the LOVELY colorful sunset this evening! I’ll be sharing photos soon.

14. the sun came out earlier today so the weather was warmer for my morning swim and Molly made a new friend of a 3 month old Damation puppy named Aloha!

15. my sister had a cell signal (after being w/o one for several days) and called from Minnesota tonight … allowing us to catch up with one another as we chatted for about an hour.

16. for the free Dixieland Concert in the Park this evening.

17. the sun FINALLY came out even though it was late afternoon when it did so.

18. I swam yesterday & today because I’m thinking of taking tomorrow off to meet a friend for brunch at 10:30.

19. my sister thinks seeing her photos on my blogs will be fun.

20. my neighbor Mike volunteered to help me pick the limes from the TOP of the tree and ended up trimming those high branches for me. What a guy ;–)

21. for a beautiful SUNNY morning to swim (finally) … especially since later in the day the weather got cold & nasty and ‘thunderstorms’ are predicted for tomorrow. I’ll believe THAT when I see it!

22. I managed to get myself over to swim for 45 minutes this morning even though the skies LOOK LIKE we MIGHT get some rain after all … and that would be a good thing given the minimal rainfall we’ve had this year.

23. to experience unexpectedly glorious sunshine for my morning swim, a delightful free late afternoon concert by the Pacific Chorale at the Orange County Performing Arts Center followed by a delightful dinner & visit with friends.

24. Osh carries liquid Terro so I could pick some up for a friend who has ant scouts in her condo.

25. for CLEAR BLUE SKIES and a bright sunrise! It feels like summer finally ;–)

26. for the 2 dozen or so Apricot colored roses on my Just Joey rose bush plus another dozen buds. What an amazing burst of color ;–)

27. I’m building my swimming stamina a little more each day.

28. for cell phone connections with my sister, no matter where she is on the road. Her most recent call was from Boulder, Wyoming. They’re headed for Colorado soon and will spend Labor Day with friends who live there.

29. the winds aren’t blowing as the wildfires burn here in Southern California. I’m praying for quick containment.

30. for fire-fighters and support staff to combat these devastating fires burning all over our state. I’m praying for their safety as they battle the flames and provide aid & comfort to those displaced from their homes.

31. Serena & Venus Williams and Andy Roddick made it through their first round matches at the US Open Tennis Championship in New York and there will be TENNIS to watch on TV for the next two weeks ;–)


Thank you Joy

FYI – My previous Gratitude Lists can be found at Happily Retired Gal, my new WordPress site. It is my intention to keep this ‘Daily Gratitude List’ in my sidebar indefinitely because I believe it makes sense to focus on what’s right in our lives regularly. Click for:
2009 ListsAugust, July, June, May, April, March, February, January
2008 ListsDecember, November

Thought for Today

“God gave you a gift of 86,400 seconds today.  Have you used one to say ‘thank you?’”  William A. Ward

113-hfskywatch-hrg

13 new sky views
unique cloud formations each

day … fascinating

experimenting
with filters for kewl effects …

‘cuz I’m curious ;–)

Click to embiggen & for others participating in

Thursday Thirteen, Sky Watch and Haiku Friday

Morning Musings …

Daily musings from
my penciled musings in my

hand-written journal

Click to ‘embiggen’ for better viewing …

and for other ‘morning musings’ at Sacred Ruminations

Click for other ‘musings’ at Small Reflections

and if you’d like to listen to the Simple Truths video clip

Every Monday Matters

https://happilyretired.files.wordpress.com/2008/12/morningmusings-granny.jpg


Thought for Today
“The person who never made a mistake never tried anything new.”
Albert Einstein


Looking at the Sky through the Camera Lens

13 New Sky Views from Last Week

Even though skies looked

threatening a few mornings …

rain just didn’t fall.

Click to embiggen &  for others participating in Thursday ThirteenHaiku Friday,

lookingatthesky

See also today’s Haiku Sky Watch Friday at
Small Reflections and Sacred Ruminations

“Smile, breathe and go slowly.”  Thich Nhat Hanh
gratitudelogo-daisies

givingthankschallenge-southbreeze

South Breeze Farm hosted the Giving Thanks Challenge and I participated at Small Reflections in November and decided to continue indefinitely … generating the following list one day at a time throughout the month of APRIL.  I’ve decided to transfer the lists at the end of each month from Small Reflections to Happily Retired Gal … just because.  Click to see previous lists already published here.

1. for free cell to cell minutes allowing me to keep in touch with my sister while she’s on the road again with her husband.

2. a new perm to make my hair ‘care-free’ again ;–)

3. for all I’ve learned about Photoshop Elements … especially making collages with pictures I’ve taken with my Nikon D60.

4. sunshine and blue skies!

5. I managed to sleep in until almost 7 am this morning!

6. my sister & I caught up on the phone today in a wonderful conversation.

7. my brother-in-law posted photos at Picasa so I can follow their travels this time.

8. I have time to water the yard this morning since it didn’t rain after all.

9.  to have the week off from the evening Word classes for Spring Break

10. the weather’s been beautiful all week long.11. for colorful flowers of all kinds blooming in my yard & around the neighborhood.

12. Molly’s been able to play with a variety of visiting dogs this week.

13. for a pleasant afternoon of visiting a variety of stores with a friend after Retired Ladies Lunch. I’m relieved to have practiced fiscal restraint ;–)

14. for tasty blackened tacos at Duke’s with friends before discovering the Word class was canceled at the last minute.

15. I’ll be at home most of today and may finally be able to spend some time visiting blogs.

16. I managed to get myself to the evening Word 7 class even though I would have rather stayed home.

17. I managed to pull out the Maidenhair Fern crowding out the red roses without mangling my hands and arms on the bushes even though I had no gardening gloves to wear.

18. for time to do more weeding and pruning along with some watering early this morning since there’s 80+ degree weather and no rain in the forecast.

19.  my Writers Retreat Buddy & I remain in regular telephone contact almost two years after that amazing week in Taos with Suzanne and Jennifer leading 31 participants to explore our writing process.

20. I’m able to use the PSE6 skills from Adult School Classes to create photo collages to share on my blogs.21. I managed to complete several errands and still have time to play with Molly today.

22. for the BEAUTIFUL sunrise this morning and that Molly got to play with a variety of doggy friends while I snapped photos.

23. I’ve been able to talk with my sister on the cell phone a few times this week as they wait to board a ferry to Ketchikan, Alaska on Friday.

24. to catch up (over lunch) with a friend who just relocated to the neighborhood from the nearby mountains.

25. for a full 9 hours of uninterrupted sleep last night.

26. a long time friend called yesterday afternoon and dropped by to visit for a couple of hours.

27. for the lovely roses blooming in my garden currently.

28. the weather continues to be clear & sunny in Ketchikan, Alaska where my sister and her husband are currently.

29. a friend loaned me a copy of Tom Bergeron’s book, I’M HOSTING AS FAST AS I CAN. Seems like a quick, entertaining read so far.

30. for the many ‘bargains’ at the grocery store this morning!

Thank you Joy
FYI – My previous Gratitude Lists can be found at Happily Retired Gal, my new WordPress site. It is my intention to keep this ‘Daily Gratitude List’ in my sidebar indefinitely because I believe it makes sense to focus on what’s right in our lives regularly. Click for:
2009 Lists – March, February, January
2008 ListsDecember, November

Thought for Today
“As each day comes to us refreshed and anew, so does my gratitude renew itself daily.  The breaking of the sun over the horizon is my grateful heart dawing upon a blessed world.”  Adabella Radici

My Avatar

I'm a happily retired teacher. Originally blogging as storyteller, I've changed my avatar early in 2010 to reflect my recent growing interest in photography. You might recognize me from one of my three original Blogger-based sites:

Small Reflections

Sacred Ruminations

Blog Rolls, Bling and Blurbs

If you don't, click to learn more about me.

Welcome to my first WordPress site. I hope you'll look around, leave me a comment or two, and check back as often as time permits.

Hugs and blessings,
happily retired gal
(formerly known as storyteller)

1st Blogoversary celebratory post

Copyright

All words, images, and art on this site (unless otherwise noted) belong to storyteller, a most Happily Retired Gal. Please ask for written permission before using anything here. Thanks ;--)

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