Perfect weekend

The brother-in-law and the bestie came for a visit Friday night and Saturday.  Obviously ordered by the mental health angels.  We began our trip to Bennett Spring feeling loved and centered!

As happens every time we drive down into the park my heart sang with old memories of happiness and making new memories with him.  After setting up, we headed to the lodge for dinner at 4:30 …. exactly the way old people are supposed to do it.  I have hope every time we are here that the food will improve but I swear they can’t even pull off a tasty hamburger…we are repeat customers mostly because of the ambiance and history.  The lodge along with most all of the other buildings and bridges here were built by the CCC in the 30’s.

After dinner we hit the park store to check for off season sales and to scope out my future purchases.


We bought a couple of ball caps which were a necessity because it started raining.  After a hot and humid day on the stream, rain brings on the eerie fog which roles from the spring down the stream.  Fisherman actually are lost from View by the fog.


…..and when we got back to the campsite…


Namaste…

Not my first goat rope

Or not my first rodeo but today ….. put it in Perspective.

I have had a headache for a little over a month.  I’ve been on two rounds of antibiotics, 5 days of prednisone and now on steroidal eye drops.  I’m better today….it’s just a vague headache but I’m really out of sorts and it has thrown my entire peaceful agenda into disarray.  Okay….it isn’t really the headache….it is my REACTION to not feeling well.

  • He’s only a 23 pound 9 month old child who is a charmer who smiles all of the time and has a voracious appetite.. unless he is tired and needs a nap….then his screaming can peel paint from the walls.  He’s only a 23 pound baby….it’s just a thing until it isn’t a thing…he’s one of the loves of my life!
  • I killed at least 13 flies in the house yesterday and have already killed 5 this morning.  They have to be coming in from somewhere.  They are only flies…they aren’t snakes or dinosaurs.  They are only flies.
  • It is September 21st and there is a heat advisory out for this area.  Heat and humidity for crying out loud.  I can’t stand the humidity.  It’s just hot, princess….you can spend your time indoors in the air conditioning.
  • Trump is still President and the republicans are trying to take away healthcare and innocent souls are dying because of global warning,  okay…..you are on to something there….put it into Perspective….I CAN’T.

Until next time…..

It HAS to be something else, doesn’t it?

Without any forethought or planning other than marriage, I moved to a smaller town of 15,000, give or take, in the heartland.  It was a predominantly white town of blue collar Maytag workers…lots of union workers…my first impression as an outsider…kind of a clique town.  I finally landed a well paying job for the county sheriffs office, made a lot of friends, helped organize labor union representation for county workers, volunteered in the community and raised 2 successful daughters.  Through most of my life in this small town/county, my only real political problems involved going up against the old white men republicans that sat at the head of the county board of supervisors when we negotiated union contracts and my hatred of these same old white men every winter when my gravel roads became impassable.  Rather an idealic life, wouldn’t you say?

Then Maytag up and left the community for Mexico and was later sold to the Whirlpool Company.  A state prison was built south of town, crime increased which I will always believe had something to do with the inmate population being in the back yard, we acquired a more significant drug problem, I have no facts or figures on the percentages but I maintain we spent a lot of time, money and energy on a lot of lost souls whom I referred to as dirt bags….unless you have worked as a public service employee……law enforcement, health services….you just don’t know what is out there…..and you really don’t want to know.

Now 40 years later, I have been changed.  I look at the plight of these dirt bags differently, I maintain their lifestyle is the result of years of poor, broken families who just gave up on their kids and their kids, etc.  I believe they escaped their hardships with drugs and everything else to make themselves feel good in the moment and this cycle of survival began.  I understand this lack of compassion and hatefulness pouring out of  our conservative D.C. Government….the dregs of society draining our coffers because they are lazy and refuse to work.  For the most part I understand it….I don’t agree with it because I have become one of those bleeding heart liberals….. but I understand the mentality.

BUT ISNT HEALTH CARE….LIFE AND DEATH…..A RIGHT WE SHOULD HAVE AS AMERICANS…..AS HUMAN BEINGS ON THIS PLANET….especially in contrast with the billions and billions of dollars available for everything else?  Don’t we deserve a right to LIVE above and beyond every other perk in the United States of America?

Until next time….

Under the auspices of God

Or what ever deity you think you are representing, this is a short, yet direct rant to those who take cover under the umbrella of Christian for your bigoted, nasty, painful, critical, hateful beliefs.

For the most part, I question you even attend an organization of formal “religion”,  have any idea whatsoever the teachings of the Bible you hold up as a sword or say your prayers before each meal let alone lift up in supplication the needs, pain or love for anyone or anything.

I’ve recently read statements, blogs and Facebook posts from people I know and people I don’t know who use the Christian label to define themselves that have absolutely blown me away.  Negative, downright nasty, bigoted, cruel comments have been put out there from electrified fingers on a keyboard.  These are not the teachings of Jesus who you exhault as your spiritual leader and in his name.  These are the rhetorical bombastic remarks from someone who really only worships self.

There is a huge gap between political conservative-liberal differences and the hateful dialogue spewing from your heart in the name of the God you use as a cloak for your hate.

That’s it!

If you disagree with me or take offense at these words, tell someone that cares…not me.  I don’t care what you think.

Once is usually Enough for me

I’ve been having difficulty finding a book that holds my interest.  I like a book that grabs me at the first sentence…yet when this happens, it means that I can’t wait to find out what happens in the end…so halfway through I read ahead to find out what happens and then spend the rest of the story regretting that decision.  This is probably the reason I have never read the same book twice.  The closest I’ve come is Leon Uris, Exodus or maybe the Thornbirds…

I also can count on maybe two fingers the number of times I’ve watched a movie after reading the book.  I think it has to do with my personality and my displeasure with boredom in general.  The other obstacle is I cannot read/absorb violence or just generally when bad things happen to people that causes pain and/or agony.  So in today’s genre of movies and literature, My options are very limited.

There are 4 movies I have watched multiple times Ice storm, obviously Dirty Dancing, Jennifer Beals and her double in Flashdance and my annual Ellen Burstyn/Alan Alda Same Time Next Year.  Oh and the Sound of Music because of the music, julie Andrews and Christopher Plummer and the music.  Interestingly, I recently watched a Christopher Plummer Movie a few nights ago which was pretty good.
And this little look into my brain is finished and inserted in Dear Diary……it’s time for some CHIEFS football.

Until next time…..

The new gadget I’ve found

This hose changed my life!  

All of the years I lived in Iowa, Mothers Day in May was the beginning of spring for flower planting.  4 hours south in Missouri, I begin mid April.  With my first flower purchase of the year, I feel love and contentment.  It’s a renewal!  I find great pleasure dragging pots out of the garage, packing potting soil under my fingernails and spreading out the beauty on every flat surface I can find.  I’m never disappointed with the amazing color display that surrounds me on the deck early summer.  Then the hot summer starts frying the beauties even though they are protected much of the day under the leaf canopy…..and I have to start hauling water out of the house in a watering can and old ice tea plastic containers…refill after refill after refill….because the damn hose won’t reach from the side of the house to the deck.  This irritates me.  Then I found this cloth expandable hose on Amazon.  It is a very small hose ….. until I hook it to the regular hose and WOW it expands to 25 feet so I can reach every flower from one end of the deck to the other.  RECOMMEND!

I’ve always been partial to petunias…as long as they are dead headed, the color display is amazing…until you miss a few days of care


I’ve never been partial to germanium…but they are hearty and don’t disappoint.

For the last two years, I’ve been sheltering pots of these in the basement during winter.


This year I planted 3 of them in this old wash tub and they look amazingly lush.  For some reason these volunteer, obviously hardy petunias lasted?

And then my pride and joy….the potted plant the Baxter Fire and EMS sent me when I retired in 2014.  I stress out every winter when it starts dropping leaves but as soon as I get it outside it rejuvenates and is more beautiful than ever!


And now we move on…I’m starting the anticipation for Christmas lights.

Until next time….

Control is an illusion….

Free will to make decisions, yes…actually being in control….no, not really.

I am a recovering control freak!  I’ve spent many years making firm decisions, manipulating situations and other people so that things could or would be done “correctly”.  There are few people that I willingly allowed dominance over me and usually this was accomplished by fellow manipulators….or perhaps I should include those who held a superior roll in my life…like bosses or parents.  I usually figured it out eventually.  When I look back on it, I don’t really regret my weaknesses because I learned the lessons and eventually recognized the signs.

Back in the day when I would adjust the TV Guides and remotes on the coffee table several times a day, become angry when things were not done the way I thought they should be done, I started realizing that this wasn’t about the TV Guide, etc at all.  It was actually a power move to have control over things I thought I COULD control….and these were very insignificant things when viewing the big picture.

I now see control as an illusion in order to protect ourselves.  My Kidney cancer diagnosis was one of those face slaps that brought reality to the forefront.  Bad things happen, relationships cease to function and sometimes….it’s just a fact….life does not always work out they way we demand and/or plan.  We have our hopes and dreams but the bottom line we must just react on a daily basis to life.  I’m finding that life is so much easier and peaceful when I don’t have carved in stone expectations of others or situations.  We don’t really control anything, we make wrong and right decisions based on the facts we are given.  Control freaks are difficult people and speaking from experience, I don’t think they are generally happy people…we are afraid of the unknown and I think we cause ourselves more grief when we are unwilling to just “roll with it”!

Until next time….

Developing invisible armor

While on my meditative walk tonight, I realized that occasionally ….like tonight….I feel like I’m wearing some type of invisible armor.  It’s not like I physically don this armor or perhaps more like bubble wrap…it’s just there.  I feel safe, I like being with me.

I have 10 years of ninasusan blogs and many pages of less articulate screaming-in-my-head saved in my own personal diary…pages in spiral notebooks and on my computer….i was always attempting to find a reason why I felt like a victim all of the time …. why I was damaged…..why I couldn’t get my shit together and stop the angry voice!  Searching, searching!

I THINK that only a handful of people in my life knew of my angst and hatefulness.  I THINK I presented myself as confident, sane and loving.  We never, ever know what hardships and heartaches our friends may be going through.

But the fact of the matter is this:  if we are wallowing in our own self pity and not liking who we are deep down in our soul…our private stash of pain, it takes the DESIRE and self reflection to sort it out and seek the answers.  No one is going to be able to fix me other than me.  I heard so many times that you have to love yourself before you can love others…I always thought that sounded trite. I related it to loving the way I look…the societal view of outer physical beauty and I knew I would never get there.  What I believe it really means is loving what is deep down there inside…what others can’t see….or they do see from our actions and words…we just don’t know they can see it.

One step at a time…casting out the demons…the envious, judgemental thoughts that we feel about others which manifests by the way we treat people mentally and verbally.

It’s a process….always a work in progress…listening to those people closest to us that have the guts to tell us the truth then listening to the dialogue in our head and then one day at a time…rephrasing that dialogue.

My thoughts about me tonight.  I’m doing the work…the walk is uphill most of the time…but the occasional downhill peace of mind is love and inner peace.

Until next time….

I feel like an over achiever

I exceeded my Fitbit step goal today….and made my stairs goal.  First time in a very long time.  I have gone through periods in my life that I felt compelled to walk…before fitbit or the other convenient electronics…I had to plan out my route by driving the route to figure out what kind of mileage I would be putting in.  We lived in the country and I walked gravel roads…3.5 miles if I was feeling lazy and 4 miles if I was energized.  At the time, I had a love hate relationship with gravel roads…I ate a lot of dust from passing cars and trucks, I cursed a lot of cars and trucks who made no attempt to slow down when passing a walker, I never felt safe listening to music on my “Walkman” “MP3 player” as loud as I wanted to….but walking on country roads was the time for me to think without distractions.  I loved the evening walks when I would come upon a hollow (a small valley for you city folk) and the temperature would drop and it would just smell different.  Evening with the sun going down always felt and smelled different than walking under a blazing sun.   I stopped walking for some reason.  life changed.  Not good or bad…just changed…I lost my groove.

When we moved to Missouri, I started walking again…not 4 miles but at least a mile and sometimes 2.  Its different walking in a neighborhood….more distractions, more people.  I am not a social walker.  I prefer to walk alone and I prefer not having to fake friendliness with the neighbors.  I just wanted to walk….and then I lost my groove again.  

Today, I felt like walking.  I was diagnosed a couple weeks ago with some “iron poor tired blood” ……in case you remember the phrase from geritol commercials.  The doctor has me taking a significant amount of daily iron to build me back up.  When I took Frannie on her late night walk, I realized that I wanted to walk me too…we walked down to the end of the street tonight instead of just 3 houses down.  Maybe I didn’t really just lose my groove…maybe I was just running my iron tank too low.  I have hope!

Until next time….

Not my first but probably my last…

My blog…my story….my opinions.

I had my fill of dominant, aggressive, insecure men today……and the soft spoken preacher-like man who invaded my space to point to my heart and asked me if I could feel my heart beating…that was God speaking directly to me that he is connected on and on and on.  

The over bloated bully who showed up with his side kick (who only grunted because he was devouring a mcdonalds breakfast sandwich)….informed me that I didn’t have enough stuff to sell to call it a garage sale…bad mouthed an old croquet set I had from Menards and passed over 3 boxes of ceramic tile spouting, “I suppose these are Menards too”.  After looking at our reccumbent bikes with a Sneer,  he asked me how much for them…I said 250 apiece…he said do you have change for a 10.  I’m very upset with myself as I write this that I let it go on and on and didn’t order him off of MY F’ING PROPERTY.

The soft spoken preacher leach.  Why did I let him go on and on and on.  He wasn’t buying…he was spouting his religion to a sucker that didn’t tell him I wasn’t interested in hearing his BS!

My heart went out to the old man that said he was going to garage sales because his wife is a computer game addict…playing Words with Friends….he had to be home by 10 because he was afraid she would lose track of time and miss her doctors appointment again?!

I totally enjoyed the women…the groups of women….the elderly sisters who watched out for each other and told each other they didn’t need it.  The elderly woman that weighed no more than 100 pounds with a pale complection that was so grateful when I helped her carrying things to her car.

….and my favorite….the second generation Mexican woman in America…we started out talking about Chiefs football and ended up talking about immigration….illegals …. and her family who came to America for a better life…worked for their citizenship…and became successful Mexican Americans….she had no affection or sympathy for illegals who sneak in to America and have to hide because they will not participate in the process of becoming legal.  She had some valid points.

Garage sale Day 2 tomorrow….

Until next time,,,,