How to Enjoy Life During a Pandemic

“Don’t brood. Get on with living and loving. You don’t have forever.” – Leo Buscaglia

I have long said that in hard times we have a choice – let whatever it is be a ball and chain around our necks and drown, or use it as a stepping stone to rise above the noise. This is a choice we all have, we all possess the ability to make it.

In this day and age of social distancing, masks, pandemics, riots, politics and general craziness, do we actually have a choice? Yes we do. While no one’s life is perfect, and we may not be able to completely change our circumstance, we can chose to make the best of it. That may seem hard when we are in survival mode, trying to keep our head above water, but that may be the key to surviving with our sanity.

Many are going a bit stir crazy because travel and activities have been limited. Eating out, getting a hair cut, even going to see family, has been difficult, if not impossible depending on where and the health of those involved.

How do we stay sane, or even happy, during all that is going on in the world? First, turn off the news and step away from social media. Plug into what makes you smile, what gives you a thrill, what means the most to you.

Even in hard times, even when you are tired or missing those you love because of the virus, you can make a choice as to how your day is going to be. You can chose to seek out and enjoy those little perfect moments during the day. It could be a favorite song on the radio, talking to a good friend, watching a good movie or a favorite TV show, or simply unplugging from the news and digital life to get some peace and quiet. It could be cooking a good meal, planting a garden or enjoying a good glass of wine (or coffee). You can chose to make the best of it of current events, or not.

And the fact of the matter is that time is going to pass either way, so you might as well enjoy it.

I believe in the ingenuity and resilience of the human spirit. We have been given the power of reasoning, opposable thumbs and the ability to love. we can accomplish whatever we put our minds to. And if you decide to, you can find the best in each day, in each experience and even each moment. You can take this time, this break from rushing around, and find joy in the “new normal” until things go back to normal.

For me it has been time with visiting friends, laughing with neighbors and spending time with those special to me. It is reading, writing and dancing around the house to my favorite music. It is keeping up with the garden, finding delicious new places to eat (that are open here), and doing what I can to have fun in daily life. It is petting the cats, making plans for the future and thinking of doing PiYo. It is popcorn and movies, and naps, and video chats with friends. It’s being very aware of how fortunate and blessed I am, and making the most of every day.

It is mind over matter – it may be hard, but what our minds and hearts can do is much stronger. Baby steps are not hard if they are done one by one, until we have traveled thousands of miles with those little steps. So eat, drink and be merry. This is the only life you have, and it will be what is made if it. SO be determined to persevere, through viruses, through politics, through everything…because you can and you will.

Life is short. Put that ingenuity and imagination into finding the best in the day. If there isn’t much to work with, then create a world of your own, filled with whatever you like most – fresh flowers, good music, good food, whatever it is. Chose to enjoy the ride and watch how much fun the curves become.

“Better keep yourself clean and bright; you are the window through which you must see the world.” – George Bernard Shaw

Purpose and Desire

“Your purpose is to discover your world and then with all your heart give yourself to it.”

Purpose is defined as the reason for which something is done or created or for which something exists. The definition of desire is a strong feeling of wanting to have something or wishing for something to happen. For me the differentiation is extremely important, and for most others too. But how?

It is important to know the different between our purpose and what we want do to. For instance, our job may not be our purpose. Or, if we are lucky, the two can intersect. But first we must understand the difference and apply them to our lives.

My job is being a writer. This brings me sop much joy, as I love it and am thankful every single day for it. But, that is not my purpose. F or a long time I have struggled with my purpose, like many others. And then I started to look around. And I started listening to what my closest friends have said.

My job is being a writer. This brings me sop much joy, as I love it and am thankful every single day for it. But, that is not my purpose. For a long time I have struggled with my purpose, like many others. And then I started to look around and started listening to what my closest friends have said. Over and over I keep hearing the same thing, so maybe it is time to accept it.

Because maybe our purpose is what seems to follow us know matter where we go. Maybe it is what happens naturally, without us trying, or looking or even wanting.

When I look at my life there is a common theme. That no matter where I am, who I am with or what I am doing, people seek me out. They tell me their secrets, they ask for help, they trust me with special things. and I like that even though I do not seek it out. The theme seems to be for me to serve and help others.

In the past I have taken care of my family – both my parents as they were terminal, the estate afterwards, my nephews and my sister. But I did all of it alone and while it was a joy to help those I loved, it depleted me completely.

So what I now seek is my purpose, with a partner. I know what I can do alone, and if I can do all of that, then imagine what I can do with a partner in crime? I want to build a life bigger than my own. I want a purpose larger than myself. But I want a partner to do it with. I have poured my heart into taking care of my parents and my sister’s family. Now, I want to pour my heart into building a life with another.

I want to plan and work toward goals together. I want to help build a bigger life together and fulfill a purpose together. I want to serve together, serve my partner and his family, our family together. I want to pray together, reach together and make life spectacular together, to work hard together and comfort each other, together. This is something that I feel deep down, where the soul meets the mind and confers with the heart. It is the precipice on which and stand an willingly fall into.

This is the next step for me. I have spent time alone, I have had friends visit me, and I am the happiest when serving and helping others. My desire is to be writer, but my purpose is to serve – with a partner. So it is for which I pray.

Life is short. Make it matter. Build a life that matters. Be aware that the world is bigger, wider, and more complex that we as humans could ever imagine. But somewhere out there, is your purpose. Go find it.


It seems that I have not been writing as much. Maybe this is true. But I have been living a lot. And sometimes when you are busy living you don;t always have time to write. Indeed, there have been things I wanted to write down, even taken notes for later. And then the mood and inspiration passes. So it’s not so much writer’s block as it is living.

Is this a good thing? Yes and no. While it is good to live life, laugh, have fun and find the joy, especially in these times, it is also important to take time for what you love. It is important to take time for that creative part of yourself, those things that give life meaning and give you that spark.

Whether it is writing. playing music, painting, dancing, tending a garden or whatever, we must take the time to feed our creative parts. This is because what we enjoy doing is an integral part of us, our psyche and our personality. To cut that off to disconnect an important part of individuality.

Life is short. Always create in some way. Find ways to do what you love, even if time is short. Because ultimately it is.

Like rain

Succeed brilliantly so dreams fall like rain.

I wrote this nine years ago and still try to live by it today. But what does it mean exactly? And what do we do to make it happen? First I think it means that we must work hard to hard to reach our goals. But part of succeeding is also failure, because it is when we fail that we learn the most.

And after failures, we get up, dust ourselves off and try again. And again. And again. Until we succeed brilliantly from all we have learned. But that is not enough. You must irrigate and cultivate your work into a system of dreams to nourish your life. Become a dream turbine…creating the energy and electricity to bring them to fruition.

But how? Hard work and perseverance. I am a writer, and if I quit every time someone told me “No” or every time someone else was chosen for a job, then I would never leave my house or write another word. Everyone must face rejection, because no matter how good you are, even if you are one of the best, someone will always be better. Don’t take it personally. Move on and go to the next.

Eventually, you will get the Yes that you want and need. But you must persevere first. And when you do, and those positive answers keep coming, then you will see those dreams. Remember anything worthwhile doesn’t come easy. We appreciate that which we worked hard to accomplish.

Life is short. Have many dreams and make as many of them come true as possible. If you don’t know how or where to start, start anywhere. Trust me, it will happen.

In the Garden

We all have things that we do to help when our spirits are low. For me, there are several: wine, ice cream, dancing to loud music, putting the kitties, and working int he garden. After a tough week, I worked int he garden the last few days.

My Mom used to talk about how she loved working in the dirt, with the plants and how she felt closer to God and His Earth. I remember working int he garden with her as I would help string the beans, or weed, or put seeds in place. The work is slow, purposeful and methodical. And it that, I found comfort and peace. There is a process to life, to letting things develop, to planting and trusting God to make those seeds grow and blossom with the Sun.

“Out beyond ideas of wrongdoing and rightdoing there is a field. I’ll meet you there. When the soul lies down in that grass the world is too full to talk about.” ― Rumi

In this day of viruses, masks, quarantine, political unrest, protests and social distancing, is it possible to find peace? Yes, I think so. I think we have to find that place deep within ourselves, the place that is only for us. And we must be still and quiet, and there peace will follow.

For me it helps to be in the garden, where I am reminded that even though you cannot see the growth and development, it is there. SO when I get discouraged with life, or family or anything, I am reminded that just because i cannot see the forward movement, does not mean it is missing. Sometimes positivity is slow, growth is slow, change is slow. And that is the way of life.

Life is short. Go work in your garden. Tend to your life, and watch the fruits of your labor blossom. And know that even when you cannot see the progress, you must still have faith, because it’s there, underneath the surface. And so it is with life – there is so much more than we can see.

Be Kind

Being a writer, I listen to lyrics When I hear a song. So in addition to the music and the beat and the emotion behind the music, I also listen to the power of the written message. Great lyrics and music on this one. I know I have wondereed the same thing…

Wanna believe, wanna believe
That you don’t have a bad bone in your body
But the bruises on your ego make you go wild, wild, wild, yeah
Wanna believe, wanna believe
That even when you’re stone cold, you’re sorry

Tell me why you gotta be so out of your mind, yeahI know you’re chokin’ on your fears
Already told you I’m right here
I will stay by your side every night

I don’t know why you hide from the one
And close your eyes to the one
Mess up and lie to the one that you love
When you know you can cry to the one
Always confide in the one
You can be kind to the one that you love

I know you need, I know you need
The upper hand even when we aren’t fighting
‘Cause in the past, you had to prepare every time, yeah
Don’t wanna leave, don’t wanna leave
But if you’re gonna fight then do it for me

I know you’re built to love, but broken now, so just try, yeah

I know you’re chokin’ on your fears
Already told you, I’m right here
I will stay by your side every nightI don’t know why you hide from the one
And close your eyes to the one
Mess up and lie to the one that you love
When you know you can cry to the one
Always confide in the one
You can be kind to the one that you love

I know it’s hard for you, but it’s not fair
Going sick in the head tryna get you there
And I know it’s hard for you, but it’s not fair
It’s not fair

I don’t know why you hide from the one
And close your eyes to the one
Mess up and lie to the one that you love
When you know you can cry to the one
Always confide in the one
You can be kind to the one that you love
When you know you can cry to the one
Always confide in the one
You can be kind to the one that you love

Writing Prompts

Even the most prolific writers can have writers block. And as I was looking through a book store I found the perfect solution: 300 Writing Prompts. And as I looked through the pages I had to smile. So may little questions that could spawn a million writings.

Questions like: What keeps you smiling on the worst of days? (Usually copious amounts of wine. Seriously my faith and knowledge that even the worst is only temporary).

What is your defense mechanism? (You’ll have to know me better before I tell you that one.)

How far would you go to get what you want? (Depends, is a Klondike bar involved? Because I might do some sketchy things for one of those).

Any one of those questions could inspire a number of writings. Between stories, experiences, and thoughts, it is all a matter of point of view. 300 questions, and endless possibilities for answers.

So I closed my eyes, turned to a page in the book and pointed my finger. It landed on this question: Do you think Chivalry should be alive or dead and how does it make you feel?

I have very strong feelings about this. Chivalry should be alive and well, but it seems to be fighting for it’s last breath. Chivalry is an art. Opening doors, holding hands, checking the tire pressure or filling up the tank just because. All of these little acts and chivalry. All of them are small acta to show loce, kindness and respect.

Making sure that the doors are locked at night. Bringing flowers when you pick up your date, calling to ask her out, doing what you can to make her life easier in any way. That, to me, is chivalry. And it makes me feel wonderful.

Women are pretty simple really – treat us with respect and some romance and we will be yours forever. Every woman wants to feel adored and cherished. There, that’s it, that’s the secret. If a man makes me feel that way, my heart will be his. And most women are the same in that respect.

And it makes me smile. It makes me feel light headed and happy to be cherished and adored.

Life is short. Chivalry is not dead, it’s just pretty rare these days. So drink it up and appreciate it when you see it.

Until the next writing prompt…

More pictures

In this day and age of cell phones everywhere, and no one leaving phone without it, it is easier now more than ever to take pictures of our lives. And As I look though mine for this year, only 6 short months so far (yes I know we are in July, but it is still half the year over). It is very clear that this has been one of the best years of my life, full of adventure, fun and mystery. There has been travel, friends, pets, sunsets and sunrises, wine, coffee, diners and more. All captured through the lens of a phone.

Here has been my life in Texas, since I moved to the new house February 2nd. Not even Covid and slow this adventure girl down. So here are some pictures, in no particular order:

The Day After

Many movies have been written about the day after…it just depends on what happened the day before that makes the story. For me, this time in this story, it is the day after the anniversary of four years. It has been a fantastic year so far, even with all the Covid craziness, which is why it caught me by surprise as to why that day was so hard.

But here it is the day after. And I feel good again. Back to myself. The weeks leading up to the anniversary are always a bit difficult as well because she was in the hospital for 16 days before. And each one of those days has a very specific and vivid memory attached.

But then that day passes, and life gets back to normal. The sun comes up, the birds sing, and life goes on, just as it did the day before and just as will will the next day after. And this is a blessing.

I think of a difference a day makes, as I am feeling back to happy and enjoying life today. And I think about where I was a year ago taking care of my alcoholic ex, making sure he went to his Dr’s appointment – cardiologist, counseling. primary care physician. Helping him look for houses and dealing with his crazy nanny situation.

Two years ago I was jumping out of a plane to make the second year Mom was gone. I figured it was good to celebrate it by going sky diving with a good friend. It was truly life changing and it time to do it agian. The year before that. which was the firt anniversary of her death, was miserable. Dad had passed 3 months earlier and I was still in the throws of active grief.

And now the 4th year is done. And that is the thing about life and death and any issue that we go through that leaves a scar – go through it. Feel what ever you feel and face it head only Otherwise you will e a shell of who yo were before because not dealing with it will wreak havoc until you do.

Life is short, too short to be tied down to things you haven’t dealt with yet. Sit down with your pain and confront it. That is the only way to get over it. Cry, scream, go a little crazy of you have to even. It’s OK. Because once it is out of your system, it’s done. And the day after is always filled with more chances for fresh starts that any of us can imagine.

Four Years

Hey Mom, it’s me. Today is four years since you have been gone. I thought this was supposed to get easier with time. I guess it does a bit with every day life. I don’t cry every day like I did before during that first year you were gone.

But the anniversaries are still a bitch. I thought I had this anniversary handled. It has been a great year with everything I want and all my prayers answered. I am happy in the first time since you died. Finally happy. And it feels so good.

But this week I have been a miserable mess, and today especially. This has completely caught me off guard because while I know you never get over grief, I thought this anniversary would be easier. It isn’t.

Miss you and love you so much. Please visit me in my dreams.

The Bluff

We are all familiar with the poker face, the bluff.  You say you have the cards that you don’t, in hopes that the ones across the table will fold.  The game is based on first the cards and second, on being able to make sure no one can read your face. The last time I played Texas Hold’em, I won – cleaned out the table. And no, it wasn’t beginners luck either.

I am a pretty good judge of character, because I watch and listen to others. While it seems that I am playing, laughing and joking, I am also noticing little things…Little tells about the other person. I notice Little things in every day circumstances.  What do they look like then they are happy?  Sad? Angry? Upset? What about when they are lying? I watch others in every day life to learn the habits.

I do this not to expose others, but because it is only in the subtleties that you can truly learn someone for which you are. And that is the only way anyone will learn me. I am not one to wear my heart on my sleeve. To to know me, you must pay attention to little things. Only two men have ever been able to figure me out…a few seconds to tell how I feel, what kind of day I have had.

One thing is that I do not bluff. Ever. Because I am  horrible at it. We all must know our limitations. I can’t bluff, so I don’t.

I have an ex boyfriend who always used to tell me that he was in a relationship and seeing someone, even in love with them…when he wasn’t. He would later admit that he was seeing no one, and he lied about all of it. He would do this to punish me if I rejected him. This happened several times. And I could tell he was lying. He had certain”tells” and he would never offer proof. So I always knew he was lying.

That is the thing about poker and bluffing – you always have to show you hand. If you don’t, the house knows you never had a flush.

Life is short. Don’t bluff. And don’t trust others who never show proof. If they are not willing to show their cards, rest assured, whatever they say they have – whether a full house, or lots of money or even a new girlfriend – it’s a lie.

Not Much To say

A good friend mentioned that I have not been blogging much recently. They are correct. I suppose that there are a few reasons for this. First, it is amazing how shy I get when I know that certain ex’s are reading on a regular basis…and their daughter’s and ex wives. Just because this is a public forum, doesn’t mean I welcome all.

That and honestly, there is not much to say. It is hard to have adventures when everything is shut down with a mask over it. I have stopped watching the news except for what I need to know locally. Yes, I have joined the many who simply cannot stand all the divisiveness that is going on in the news.

So I am m also joining those who are simply gathering their things and “going home” so to speak. I want to be quiet right now. I am want enjoy the small things that can bring me joy, I want to have a large life, just not a loud one. I feel the need to be around love and kindness, especially this month, especially in the next few weeks.

So here I am, safe and sound, enjoying coffee in the mornings, a little wine in the evenings, watching TV, attempting to exercise and trying not to go stir crazy. Life is out there, but it is also all around.

Life is also short and delicate. Appreciate those who love you.

Mixed Bag

Every season in life has ups and downs. This is the season of Covid, or the ‘Rona, and the Virus. It is the season of being in Limbo and waiting, and wondering. It is the season of masks and uncertainty. It is the season of Summer.

And with that brings a mixed bag of every emotion under the sun. Many people feel anxious and unsure, afraid of what might be coming next. Indeed this year is turning out to be a Quinton Tarantino movie based on a Steven King novel. And we are all stuck with dry popcorn and no butter.

And yet when I went to the store to grab some last minute Forth of July items, people where laughing and excited. You could feel the energy and enthusiasm through the masks even. And then there were the fireworks. Nothing like what I have seen in Georgia. In my home state, there are places to go see the fireworks, and someone might set off a couple. But here in Texas, everyone has two things: guns and fireworks. And they were setting off a ton of fireworks. Indeed, all I had to do was sit out in my back yard for a complete 360 show, It was pretty spectacular.

And one of my best friends just got engaged. They say quarantine will either break you apart, or bring you closer. And another good friend is staying with me for a bit, so there are great meals, and wine, and conversations, and plans to be made. I found out an old friend passed away a few days ago, and talked to one of my dearest and oldest friends today.

I finally have my office all set up, complete with a pink leather massaging office chair. It is fabulous. I sit at my desk (that used to belong to my father), in my hollywood style feathered robe and do important things. All of the pictures are hung and the books are unpacked and in the bookcases. Indeed, there is still much to celebrate.

And that is the thing about life – it is rarely ever all good or all bad. And even in times such as these, we can find that which makes us smile, makes us happy and excited. It can be anything from grilling a good meal to planning a trip to talking to your favorite person.

And indeed I am wanting to to the Maldives, wanting to see friends and family in Costa Rica, and Belize, and wanting to run and play with whose whom I have not seen a in while. As soon as it is safe, you bet I will be on the plane. Until then, There is much to do at home.

Life is short. It is also a mixed bag. So make the most of what you’ve got. And don;t worry so much about the rest. It all evens out.

Greatest Fear

We all have seen those lists of questions to ask a friend or a partner. I was going through the list this past week, and one stuck out: What is your greatest fear? I have to think about that one. Honestly, I don’t have one, because I have already lived through my greatest fears.

I moved halfway across the country for a fresh start. Found my house online and signed the lease without having actually seen it – that was pretty scary. I was terrified actually. What if I fail? What it it’s terrible? What if I hate it?

I have succeeded miserably, failed spectacularly, fallen gracefully, risen Clumsily, and tried with all my heart. I’ve won, lost, been lied to, told the truth, been ashamed and terrified of my actions. I’ve woken up alone used and confused. I have had my drink drugged, and luckily managed to get home safe, even if I didn’t remember exactly how.

I have nearly died, and surely thought I would gasp my last breath, at the hands of another human being. I have been beaten and left for dead. I have seen my mother waste away, pound by pound, until there was nothing left of her. I have seen my father not remember my name. I have been all alone in the room when a dear friend has died, and held both my parents hands as they slipped from this earth to touch the Face of God. I have loved and lost and been lost. And much, much more. And I have done it all alone.

At first the thought of this sounds pretty sad, but take a closer look. It is incredibly liberating to have outlived all of your greatest fears. To have stared them square in the face and say “You won’t break me, not today.” Because the truth is that they might, and that is what we are afraid of, I think. Not the actual event or thing itself, but what it might do to us.

The other side of the truth coin is that we survive them – whatever those greatest fears are. We may come out bumped, bruised and maybe even a little bent, but they don’t kill us. And when you have lived through all of your fears, well, then there isn’t anything left to fear.

Life is short. Too short to live in fear. Celebrate what you have survived and know it is all worth it. So kiss the girl, take the job, make the move, take the chance. What is the worst that can happen? Your greatest fear? Be defined by your courage. It’s OK to be afraid, but take the chance anyway.


Just another reason I love living here. In Texas, you only need to go to your backyard to see a great fireworks show. They were all around, everywhere, as we the people celebrated this great country. Started at about 7 and still going past 11. It is wonderful to live where people still love the USA.

This Summer

It is the summer, a time of excitement, fun and levity. But the season is a bit different this year. Not just because of the virus, but also because of all of the unrest in the country. When watching the news is almost enough to give you PTSD, what can you do?

I think the answer is to tune out so you can tune in. Sounds pretty cheesy? Maybe in words but not in practice. What I mean by that is to tune out all of the noise and the news. Then, get still and listen to yourself. Listen for your inner voice. Take this time to truly reflect and settle. We can’t go anywhere anyway, so why not tune inward a bit, and get to know your soul again. All those things that make you happy, that maybe you have not had time for? Well take advantage of the time now.

Did you love to read books, but haven’t had the time? Gardening? Learning a new language? Or how about just figuring out what you want to do next? A good friend of mine has had a lot of change in the last 18 months and her life is very different now than it was. So now she is taking this time to “figure out her life.” What if we all did the same?

What is all of us took this time to fix the things we could about our lives and what we wanted? What if we came out of the quarantine much healthier, with much better quality of life and in better mental and emotional state? In this day and age, is that even possible? Yes indeed, I think it is. We just have to put in the work.

Sleep late if you need to, work in the year, read the books, talk and get to you the kids, or your partner, or even yourself. Maybe this time is a gift that has been given to us to press reset and take care of ourselves and loved ones like we should have been doing, but got to busy to do.

I have started a garden (the desperately needs weeding), unpacked and fully organized the house, and am now editing my series of books to (finally) be published. But I am also spending time with myself, enjoying the calm. Having a cold glass of wine on the patio in the evening, enjoying a song on the radio, dealing with the grief of this time of year for me. Even folding all of the laundry. All of these things aren’t pleasant, but they are needed. and they all add to the beautiful mosaic of life (thanks Rex).

Life is short. Take time during the summer, this summer, to redefine what is important. Take time to make this the most unforgettable summer ever, because it is YOUR summer, for the first time in a long time.