Showing posts from November, 2023

Not Sharing....

 As I mentioned at the end of my previous blog, on Sunday I came down with a cold.  Nothing earth shattering, just the usual miserableness of a runny nose, sore throat, headache etc.  As a result, I've been working remotely for the past two days.  (Depending on how I feel I may work remotely for the whole week...we'll see how it goes.) Pre-Covid I wouldn't have done this.  With runny nose and cough I would have trudged into the office, bottle of Day-Quil in hand.  Why?  For at least the past 7 years, I had the ability/technology to work from home or any other place where I had decent internet access.  When I was away on vacation, I would often bring my laptop and check in.  So why did I feel compelled to go into the office and share my germs?  Why did anyone? I think before we got slammed with the pandemic, we felt the need to be in an office no matter what. I can remember one woman who came in to our office and was really sick.  I went out and bought some Lysol on my lunch

Reality: Not Bfth's Thanksgiving Fantasy

 Last week, I wrote what I wanted Thanksgiving to be.  (If you missed it and want a laugh: ).  I KNEW it was not going to be what I "wanted" (or perhaps I should say what I THOUGHT I wanted), but for those who are's what REALLY happened. Monday Night:  When I got home I DID make the vegan pumpkin spice break with maple cream cheese filling.  It WAS messy.  My son confirmed with me that evening that he COULD catch a ride with a friend to the shore, although they would be leaving later.  That meant my husband I could head to the shore first thing on Tuesday. Tuesday:  I got up at before my alarm went off.  Did a few quick things and got my husband up.  We quickly packed up the car (and there was a LOT in the car) and headed to the shore around 5 in the morning.  There IS traffic on Tuesday mornings, although it is mostly headed no

Unrealistic Expectations or...

Bfth's Thanksgiving Fantasy.   Let's be clear, I am NOT really expecting what I am about to write below.    In all honesty, 99% of this is going to be false.   However, I can hope.   I can pray.   After the year I've had (my family has had), I deserve a little Hallmark holiday movie fantasy, even though I know it's not going to happen.     So here's the plan as I'd like it to happen:   Tonight after I get home and have dinner (where I'm not stressed out by the workday at all), I make the Vegan Pumpkin break (aka cake) with maple cream cheese filling.   I do so with no issues and no mess.   (Fantasy already).  Tomorrow (Tuesday), I get up, have coffee, watch part of the morning news and get to work.   I close down and pack up the car around 2 and drive to get my son.   It is not raining and traffic is not heavy.   He is waiting for us and we throw his things into the car and head for the shore.   Once again traffic is light and the rain hasn't starte

Pockets of Memory

  Yesterday I wore a houndtooth jacket.  (The photo is from a few years ago when I wrote this: ) As I said I bought this jacket a LONG time ago (before some of you might have been born).  Way back in the day when ordering clothes was not done on line (there was no on line -- at least not we know it) and was kind of exciting.  Ordering from Spiegel was "trendy" (at least for me).  As said:   "Whether you’re shopping for fresh and flowery Spiegel dresses for Spring, sexy bikinis for Summer or cozy sweaters and outerwear for Fall and Winter, the Spiegel catalog brings you a collection of fashionable women’s clothing and accessory choices. For the office, the weekend, the beach or intimates to wear under your Spiegel clothing, Spiegel delivers the items that always pack a stylish punch.  When you shop for women’s clothing, you want fashion that’s going to last. When you shop the Signature Lu

The Red Shirt

  There has been a red shirt (men's short sleeve button down) hanging (on a hanger) on the doorknob of my coat closet (which is two steps up from my living room; the staircase continues to the 2nd floor) since the end of July.  I brought it up from the shore house.  It was my father's shirt.  He never wore it.  (Or at least as far as I can tell.)  It has a small emblem on it; it's from the Lavallette Yacht Club.  My parents were members there.  (They were very much into sailing on Barnegat Bay and so were active in more than one club.)  It was at the LYC that my mother had her last social outing.  (And if I think about it, it was probably the last place she had a "real" dinner...after that it was all hospital and rehab.)  My father gave up his membership in 2023 because he was no longer able to get out and go there.  It was the right decision, but one that I felt since in addition to sailing events, my parents frequently went there for dinner and sometimes they

Where Would You Go? And Why?

 As I write this, I am once again sitting at the desk/secretary that belonged to my grandmother and once resided in the sun parlor (now music room) of my home.  I can look at the bay window (I LOVE bay windows) and can see the water in the lagoon flowing in from the North (because that's the way the wind is blowing).  Fluffy clouds fill the sky, but when they pass and the sun shines, I am warmed and wish I could just climb in that space by the window and curl up.  It is peaceful and calming; something I definitely need. This house was my mother's dream.  It took her decades to obtain this dream and she (and my father) enjoyed it.  Then SuperStorm Sandy came in 2012 and destroyed that. She (they?) had the ability to restore the dream and this was the house where my parents retired and spent the rest of their lives.  My father died in the house.  I wish I could say the same for my mother.  It is one of my greatest regrets that I didn't get her home and allow her to die while


  It's a beautiful Veteran's Day today.  The sun is shining (although it IS chilly) and it's the perfect day to gather outside and honor our veterans. If it's not sunny and beautiful where you are, I hope you will take a moment wherever you are at 11:11 to remember and honor all that our veterans have done. I am NOT a veteran.  I never could have passed the muster and to be honest, I don't know even if I had if I would have had the stamina to do so.  I do have family and friends who have served.  (If you are reading this, you know who you are and THANK YOU for all that you did.)  Some of them saw combat, some of them did not. I know some of their stories, but regretfully do not know more.   I know there must be stories, but many of them passed away before I was even born.  Many of those who I knew during their lifetime, I never had the presence of mind to ask. (Shame on me for that.)  So if I might offer a little advice on this Veteran's Day...ask and learn the


  The above I found on a friend's social media.  I'm not sure who came up with it or who originally posted it, but I found it to be truthful, at least for me.  And it was somewhat comforting to find that I am NOT the only one who feels this way.   I am in my 50s.  I'm not sure what my "calling" is.  Often, I think that I have more than one.  I feel compelled to write.  (Hence this blog which has been going on for just over 10- years now...perhaps that helps qualify it as a calling.)  Sometimes I'm compelled to speak on a topic that I am passionate about.  (Or I've been asked to speak, such as filling the pulpit when a pastor is away on vacation.)  I've had people tell me that I should write a book.  I'd love to, but I'm not sure what it would be.  A compilation of my thoughts; kind of like a hard copy of this blog?  It would have to be more than that.  I mean who would buy a book when the words are out there for "free."  Or would it

Now and Then: Thoughts...

 Nutshell/quick version:  I love it.  It speaks to me at this point in my life.  "Now and then I miss you.  Oh, now and then I want you to be there for me."  Sums up what I've been feeling for the last year or so.  It captures feelings of loss, regret and love. It is the song I needed for now. The longer version:  I'm a Beatles fan.  I'm NOT an expert. (Despite what you may hear there are not that many TRUE experts around.  Of course what constitutes an "expert" is a matter of debate.)  As a longtime fan , I'm knowledgeable, but I'm not an expert.  There was a time when I was more knowledgeable and more devoted to the group and members, but life has leeched some of that out of my brain. To be quite frank, while I LOVE the Beatles and their music (and I always will), I'm less interested in all the obsessive facts that I once was.  (I cannot name all the tracks on McCartney III ; I might be able to do so for McCartney and McCartney II. )   I

Cast Your Vote!

 Or maybe you already have with the advent of early voting, which I have done in the past, but this year I have decided to cast my ballot in person on Tuesday.  Not at the early hour that I used to, because I have to catch a bus before 7, but when I get off the bus on Tuesday evening, I will NOT be going home, but to my district's voting location and do what everyone who is eligible SHOULD do, vote for the candidates that I feel will do the best job. Whoever you intend to vote for and for whatever position that might be (Senator, mayor, councilperson, etc.) I HOPE that you have done some research.  (PLEASE tell me you have.)  Even if it's just checking out a candidate's  website (if they have one and they SHOULD have SOMETHING, even if it's just a social media page).  Know who the people behind the names are and what they (profess to) stand for.  It shouldn't be hard.  (And if it is, that should raise a red flag.  It's raised a red flag for me more than once.)

Another Day; Another Death?

 Depressing title for a blog post I know.  But it's true.  Just hours after I posted about my friend Sandy, I got the news that a family friend/neighbor had passed away on Halloween night. It was not unexpected.  K had been fighting various cancers for many years.  To be honest, I never thought that she would outlive either of my parents as her situation was much more dire than my parents.  But she was a fighter till the end.   K was a lovely woman, more than just a neighbor.  She adored my son.  (Who doesn't?  Sorry/not sorry, I can't help it.)  My son used to spend several weeks of the summer with my parents at the shore.  (He attended weeklong marine science camps that were wonderful.)  One of those times, his birthday fell in the middle of a camp week.  K made him a beautiful birthday cake that looked like a sandcastle.  It was amazing.  (And I'm still searching for the photos that I have of it).  Even when she had grandchildren of her own, she still dotted on m

Remembering Sandy

 Since just a few days ago was the 11th anniversary of the storm that took out the Jersey Shore (SuperStorm Sandy), you might think that's what today's post is about.  It's not.  It's about a friend, Sandy.  Not Alexandra, Sandra or even Sondra; just Sandy. Sandy died last week.  I didn't find out about it until the other day and it hit me hard.  You'd think in this year where death has been coming at me from all angles, I'd be "used" to it.  I'm not.  You'd think that I perhaps I was her best friend.  I was not.  You'd think that we chatted regularly either in person or via social media.  We did not.  Yet her death hit me like a ton of bricks. I can honestly say that I didn't know Sandy all that well, but I DID know her for a long time. And perhaps that is why the news of her passing really flattened me. I'm not sure at what age Sandy and I became friends.  At what age are friends consciously made? Before we were friends, befor