Thankful Thursday: Nature’s Miracle

Maybe this isn’t the best topic in the world, but I have to tell you, pee happens. So does poop… and well… so does puke.

Nature’s Miracle has been in our home for at least 16 years helping us eliminate pee, poop, and vomit smells and stains our dogs gifted to us.


Best Stuff on the Planet for Pee Remover!


I bring this up today because Annie has graced us with fake grass and stomach fluid this morning. Yippee for me!  Hubby took the dog outside, while I cleaned. It’s gone now. She’s settled down now. The washing machine just beeped telling me her floor mat has been de-puked.


I am thankful Nature’s Miracle pet stain remove and urine destroyer. It has saved many a carpet in many homes and apartments over the last 16 years.

Thankful Thursday: Off Fridays

A quick thankful note (I’m late today and was early last week with this – Oy!).

I love Off Friday’s! They happen ever other Friday at my workplace and tomorrow is one of them!

Oh the joys of a three day weekend!

A weekday to get stuff done!  

My Friday is PACKED with appointments and a fun time at the end of the day.

Thankful for the job that provides a day off every other week. Thankful for the ability to get stuff done on Off Fridays. Thankful even for being so tired I don’t want to do anything on my Off Friday.


What’s your favorite day of the week?!


Thankful Thursday: My People – The guys

I am thankful for lifelong friends: My protectors, heroes, and teddy bears.

These guys are my forever friends, since before that was a term.  Yes, they’re guys and you would think it strange, but not with these guys.  These guys would all protect me from harm if they were there and capable.

Tony Posing for Me

Tony Posing for Me

I know they don’t want to hear that I think they are teddy bears… but they are.  They don’t look all soft on the inside. They don’t talk soft on the outside.  Get them talking about days gone by and they become cuddly balls of fluff.

Bill Caught of Guard

Bill Caught of Guard

I was recently lucky enough to go on a trip home, to Chicago.  It was a whirlwind of a time.  I saw these three guys that I grew up with, all in one night. The party didn’t last nearly as long as I wanted (forever), but it was a party just for us. For us to reconnect, to laugh, to cry, to crack corny jokes no one else would understand.  Did I mention it was perfect?

Jay probably telling me to behave

Does Jay have me under arrest for smiling too much?

Ahhh, it was perfect.  Thank you guys for being my protectors, heroes, and teddy bears.

Thankful Thursday: Timing is Everything

The other day I was getting ready to visit a friend in the hospital, but the location information I had felt wrong.  I was searching for the correct place and poof!, she instant messages me.  I let her know I’m ready and find out where should I go. I offer to bring her anything she needs (except a ride home). I have to make a pit stop at the pharmacy on the way — no problem.  I was already dressed and just needed to grab my keys to get on the road. Perfect Timing.

I realize I need gas, and the station is close to the pharmacy. Great, I’ll swing in to the always busy gas station and wait 10 minutes for a pump. Nope. Pulled right in and got myself some fuel in no time flat. Perfect Timing.

Pulling out of the station is never easy, and I won’t pretend that day was any exception.  I got out, waited at the light, and then pulled into the pharmacy parking lot.  Good timing.  ;)

The pharmacy was mostly empty. I thought that was great for me. I could get in and get out and be on the road.  Item requested was procured. Easy. Then I decided to make the trip a lot longer.  I wanted to pick up a card for the friend I was going to see today.  For me, card shopping takes FOREVER.  Oddly, four cards in, I found the perfect fit.  I hope she doesn’t laugh to hard and pull a stitch was about the only concern I had about the card.  Pretty good timing.

While I was there, I noticed crayons! Ohh, COLORS! !! I was looking for coloring books. Couldn’t find a THING while at the colors area.  An older woman came by the cards — she looked like she loved card shopping as much as I do — came around the corner. I turned to her, “I wish they had coloring books,” I said in a deflated tone. “Did you check in Toys?” AHA!! Talking to strangers is my gift in life. I can strike up a conversation with just about anyone! Would you believe it? There, on the top shelf, a My Little Pony Activity / Coloring book with a purple cover was staring me in the face! WAHOO!!  I picked it up, looked around, and saw my new friend down the aisle.  I showed it to her, did a happy dance, and walked to her. We talked for a few moments about crayons, my friend, my socks… you know — the usual.  SO THANKFUL for meeting this woman.  Before I headed to the check out, I asked if she knew if this store carried flowers.  She didn’t think so, but recommended going next door to the florist. Great idea!

I prance my way (you remember how my little ponies prance when they’re happy) to the cashier then out the door with my goodies.  I look right, look left, and then prance to the left to the florist. I reach for the door and it is closed. WHAT?!  I look at the hours and it says until 3.  It can’t be after 3 already can it?  Sure enough, it’s 3:20. My shoulders sink and my prance has left me. What bad timing.

All of a sudden, the door opens from inside. A kind man’s face is behind the door. “Can I help you?”

“Yes. Please? I am looking for a couple of flowers for a friend in the hospital.” I pause.  I suddenly remember, “I have cash if that helps?!”

He offers to let me in. His wife is further in the store and she asks what I’m looking for. What amazing people.  I point to this small, perfectly purple arrangement in the cooler. “That one. Can I have that one?” I am pointing enthusiastically at these purple roses.  “Yes, you can.” She backs out of the cooler with the arrangement and it is more lovely as it gets closer to me. a narrow glass vase holds 5 flowers. The man starts boxing it for transport and she tells me her register is already closed. “How about $20?”  Seriously? Only $20?! Perfect.” I say and I find my cash in my wallet. Mind you, I hardly EVER have cash in my wallet. Perfect Timing.

I zip out and would you believe — the woman from the pharmacy is getting in the car with her husband! I quickly tell them the story of what just happened and I thank them so much for the recommendation. She reaches across her husband, he’s in the driver’s seat, to shake my hand. How wonderful of a day am I having?!  Perfect Timing.

I don’t often have perfect timing. I often get stuck by every light there is when I’m in a hurry to go somewhere or end up behind the truck that is dropping debris on the two lane road I follow to get to work. When the good happens — I take the time to reflect and be thankful for those moments.


Thank you to the older couple in the pharmacy for being some of the nicest strangers I have ever met.

Thank you to the Florist for opening your door to me.

Thanks to the Universe for the perfect timing I needed this day.



When did you have perfect timing (or the best luck ever)? Tell me about it.

Thankful Thursday: Reading About Love

I am so very thankful I was asked to do a reading for a dear friend’s wedding on July 5th.

Honored doesn’t even come close to what I feel.

I completed a reading from the Bible. Don’t everyone faint before this post is over. Yes, I did it and I wasn’t struck down with lightning and the skies did not open and pour rain down on us.  You should know those are just two of the concerns I had while preparing for the reading.  (If you were at my wedding you remember how it hailed, LARGE CHUNKS, in June, in Illinois. Talk about something scary while getting married in a church!)

Brian and I have known each other for what feels like forever.  When he mentioned he was getting married, I couldn’t wait to go to the ceremony.  It would be my first gay  weddingSQUEEEEE! I couldn’t wait to be a part of such a momentous event in his life, in my life, in the history of the country we live in. It’s HUGE!  The invite came in the mail and I had to find a date, a dress, oh — and a plane ticket!

A few days before the wedding, Brian asked if I would be willing to do a reading.  I was jumping for joy and so scared at the same time.  Could I do a reading in front of people I don’t know and for two men, only one of which I actually know?! Would I mess it up? How much am I going to cry?  Does this mean I have to dress like a girl? Would it be from the Bible?  Ahh!!!

OK, it wasn’t all that at one time — but I did think or feel all of those things at some point before I did the actual reading.  I knew it would be from the Bible before he even mentioned it. That is what probably scared me the most.  

No, seriously, not that I would get struck by lightning. More that I wouldn’t do the reading the justice it deserved.  Religion is serious. For me, a non-religious girl, this is some of the most serious stuff there is.  For Brian, I would have read anything he asked me to read at his wedding; it didn’t matter where it came from.  Brian and Cody chose me to be a part of their special day — I would find my voice — for them.

1 Corinthians 12–13

But I shall show you a still more excellent way. If I speak in human and angelic tongues but do not have love, I am a resounding gong or a clashing cymbal. And if I have the gift of prophecy and comprehend all mysteries and all knowledge; if I have all faith so as to move mountains but do not have love, I am nothing.

If I give away everything I own, and if I hand my body over so that I may boast but do not have love, I gain nothing.

Love is patient, love is kind. It is not jealous, nor pompous, it is not inflated, it is not rude, it does not seek its own interests, it is not quick-tempered, it does not brood over injury, it does not rejoice over wrongdoing but rejoices with the truth. It bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. Love never fails. If there are prophecies, they will be brought to nothing; if tongues, they will cease; if knowledge, it will be brought to nothing. For we know partially and we prophesy partially, but when the perfect comes, the partial will pass away. When I was a child, I used to talk as a child, think as a child, reason as a child; when I became a man, I put aside childish things. At present we see indistinctly, as in a mirror, but then face to face. At present I know partially; then I shall know fully, as I am fully known. So faith, hope, love remain, these three; but the greatest of these is love.

Love Never Fails

May I say — for not knowing a lot about the Bible — this couldn’t have been a more perfect reading.  If you know me — you know how much I love LOVE.  I love being in love, falling in love, seeing other people are in love… all that love stuff. Yes, in this respect, I am a total girl!  Love is amazing.

I practiced several times before the ceremony. I read it aloud for my friend I was staying with. I practiced before the ceremony with my date. Ahhh!!! I wanted it to be perfect. Not flawless-perfect because that is absurd, but perfect for the occasion. I wanted to feel it; to know it. I needed to feel confident there were certain parts that I could look away from the paper and know what I was saying, because I felt it.  I hope I did the reading justice.  I know I felt the love in the air because I cried while reading it. It was — in my opinion — perfect.

Thank you, Brian and Cody, for honoring me on your special day. It will never be forgotten.

My People

This is a post I should have made on July 6th from the airplane on my way home from Chicago.  I am a bit late in posting, but it is no less heart felt.

I knew the friends I was about to see, who I hadn’t seen in 20+ years, were the best friends a person could have. We all went to grade school together. They (mostly) got to go to high school together and I moved away before freshman year. The love I feel for them is endless.  We have a special bond that I have never felt with any other group of friends.  I know how much they mean to me…and I was a bit nervous if they felt the same about me since I had left before those formative high school years.  We weren’t able to be “The Breakfast Club” together… you know? 

What I didn’t know, but did quickly learn, is that I mean the same to them.  They never forgot about me. After all these years — they never forgot about little ol’ me. 

They love me the same as they did when we were in 8th grade.  Over the course of the night of our mini reunion I was reminded of how much I was loved and missed.  I felt so comfortable, so at home, so complete. I am loved in a way I didn’t know I was missing. It is amazing what you don’t know what is missing until it is given to you.  I cried a lot this weekend. Happy tears when I saw them all,  then sad tears when I left.  I miss these kids — My People.  

You know what?  20 years later they are still the same!!!  Sure, we got older, (I am not saying “grew up” because most of us are the same height we were back then) and there is more of us to love, but we are all the same deep down in our core.  There is something about being in a room with your closest childhood friends and immediately being comfortable no matter how much time as passed.  There are no secrets, no facades, no ‘getting to know you’ awkwardness. We simply are who we are and though many moons had passed since our last visit, we still truly know one another

My People — Are Amazing.


If you haven’t made contact with people you think of often, I suggest you do so soon.  Sure, it may have been 20 years since you last spoke, but as I learned… If you’re thinking about them, chances are, they’re thinking about you.

Thankful Thursday: Facebook

I know… I know.. that awful thing… Yep. I am thankful for Facebook.


Michele, Jill, Jennie goofing off in 8th Grage


Facebook has allowed me to reconnect with childhood, high school, and college friends. I found friends I lost touch with before the internet was around for public consumption.

This Fourth of July was a special one for me — of which will be posted about separately at some point — because I saw most of my people for the first time in 20 years. When did we get old enough to have known people all our lives and not have seen them for 20 years?  I reconnected with my people because of Facebook.  A Facebook Event was created so we could coordinate my visit and get together.  If it weren’t for Facebook I am not sure how we would have been able to get back in touch with each other.  How did the people of yesteryear do it?  How do you write letters and hope they get there? Ahhh!!!  So thankful for the technology that allows us to have Facebook.

There you have it. Whether you give FB the thumbs up or the finger, I am Thankful for Facebook.

Jennie, Michele, and Jill, together again after 20+ years

Jennie, Michele, and Jill, together again after 20+ years

Thankful Thursday: Flexibility

Thank you my friends for opening your door for me this week and being willing to flex with my hectic life.


A couple nights ago I made plans with H to make dinner together. She and I haven’t seen each other in what feels like forever. I had a harvest I needed to eat or share. It was a perfect match.

S had some stuff for me and lives close to where I work. H also works closed to where S lives. We agreed to meet at S’s house for a drink, grab my things, then scoot off to dinner.

Enter a four letter word.




I ended up working 1.5 hours later than scheduled and figured I missed my opportunity to see my friends.  I was locked in a room discussing some very important things and did not have my cell with me. Whoops!

I get to my desk and H has texted. S’s hubby, J, has called.  I check in and they’re all still at S & J’s house and there is food! HELL YES!!! Who “lucked out” on this one?! THIS GIRL!

I zipped over to their house. The door opened, the hugs were bountiful, my heart was full.  We enjoyed several hugs, laughs, great food (S is an excellent cook), stories, and that we should make plans more often.

I got home super late and MMC Racing was out cold in bed. Next time, I’ll be sure to drag him along.


Thank you my friends for always being there for me, having an open door and open arms, and for being so willing to change your schedule to fit into mine.

BTSeMag Blogger Opportunity

The Involuntary Housewife:

What an easy way to spread the word for BTSeMag. =)

Originally posted on Author Elissa Daye:

Being a blogger for BTS has benefits! Become a blogger for BTS and be a team member in the ongoing work to promote authors, as well as BTS Book Reviews emag.

There are several ways you can help and benefits for each.

convention_star BTS Street Team member. Sign up and help promote the magazine weekly. Babs Hightower, the Team Leader, will send you posts so it’s easy
to have fresh material for your blog and social media. She also will send you the code for the magazine to post on your blog.

convention_star Media Kit Group. Don’t have enough time to be a BTS Street Team member, but you would still like to help? Join this group and you will be
sent a post after each new issue is out. This will give you fresh info to post. Bloggers are asked to place the emag on their blog.


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Thankful Thursday: Opportunities

I heard a speech this year (let’s call it a pre-TedTalk) about Luck. The more I listened, the more I knew wasn’t lucky — I had simply been placing myself in the right places at the right times.  
I was inspired by this talk given at the RealOrators Toastmasters Club by Darlene Fenn of COHR Consulting.

If I wasn’t so curious about who was in “my chat room” on IRC back in 1997, I wouldn’t have interrogated my future husband. If I didn’t look for something different out of my college degree, I never would have gotten my first IT job at the age of 21.

I have struggled — we all know that.  Hopefully I was never too negative or seemed to “down on my luck”.  In me, there is almost always a smile and a will to find another way to my goal.  After a year of struggling — Look at me now!

Happily married for 16 years with a Project Management job that utilizes my strong IT background.

Having what we have hasn’t been about luck — It has been about taking chances and trying on new things. Opening myself up for failure and usually “lucking out” with a big win.

Be Daring. Take Chances. Be Open.


What chances are you going to take today?


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