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Welcome to My Ordinary Life!

life can be fulfilling or draining…choose your thoughts carefully!

Welcome!

This site is set up for those of us living an ordinary life.  I know that most of us spend so much of our lives trying to make things better that we forget to enjoy the very life that we already have!  This is a quick reminder to stop for just a minute and appreciate what we have.  Life isn’t always perfect, but we can still be happy and content every day.

There’s a lot going on in our lives every day.  Remember that you’re not alone on this journey.  Let’s talk about things that matter to us.  I would love for you to share your thoughts, stories, ideas for conversations, and comments.   I’m looking forward to talking with you soon!

Debbie

 

Should We Thank Donald Trump for this Sh*t Storm?

Bear with me; I haven’t lost my mind…yet.

I was thinking about everything last night and wondered if we have, indeed, finally reached rock bottom with this administration. I don’t think we have. We have definitely been sinking since Day 1 but, judging by the way he’s still being defended by his party, we haven’t yet hit the bottom. Given the availability of the political news, it’s hard to ignore what’s happening. The only logical conclusion is that we are in big trouble. This leaves me wondering what, exactly, needs to happen before action is taken and, just as importantly, who is going to take that action?

I think part of this situation is our own fault. I think we’ve become complacent in our lives as far as politics and government is concerned. It’s been pretty easy to sit back on our couches and criticize our politicians for decisions they make because we haven’t had to do much else. We can complain to each other about how our taxes keep going up and our food costs more, but we haven’t had anything major to concern ourselves with. We’ve gotten soft; we’ve been spoiled. I’m not speaking for everybody, of course. Some people have continued learning, speaking out, and representing us and, to them, I say THANK YOU because I have been negligent. I’ve trusted this job to others and assumed that everything will work out in the end. This is unfair to those of you that have been fighting for the rest of us. It’s been pretty easy to go along in our lives thinking everything is, for the most part, fine in our world. I think we can all agree that there are always going to be problems; however, as long as they don’t affect us directly, we can continue along pretending that those problems are minor and don’t always require our action.

This administration, this presidency, this party is waking us up to the reality that these beliefs are not right and that we, as people, are fully responsible for our own world…each and every one of us, not just some of us. This particular moment in the history of our country is waking us up to the reality that we cannot rely on other people to determine the fate and reputation of our country, to chart the course of who we want to be. We can no longer ignore the truth that there is still racism that affects people every single day of their life, that poverty is prevalent and that biases exist throughout our society in every way imaginable. There are people that feel entitled to advertise their racism and take action on their bigotry. This kind of person used to realize it was wrong and attempt to hide their beliefs. Now those people feel emboldened to act on them instead. This is a sad testament to the direction we’re going.

This is why I feel like we should thank Donald Trump. He has brought to our attention every single wrong thing that we used to pretend didn’t exist and is making us address it head-on. There is no more escaping the fact that there is bigotry and racism, that there is inequality in all forms. We have corruption in our government that needs to be addressed. We have laws and amendments that need to be rewritten. We have so much opportunity to improve things right now! I think we should take advantage of this moment to decide who we, as a people and as a country, want to be. We need to take a stand for all the good things and make sure that we keep fighting for them. We have to work hard to eliminate those things in our world that no longer belong there. We’ve been going along without too much effort but can no longer afford to do that.  I’m not happy with the chaos and turmoil we’re experiencing, but this is a unique opportunity to address our problems head-on.  The people bringing this ignorance, intolerance, and inequality into the public eye are actually doing us a favor by allowing us the opportunity to work together to become the country that we love and deserve.

We all need to learn about the issues and candidates and VOTE. That’s the least that we should do but there’s more that we can do when we’re able. I’m not saying that every single person can or should be actively involved. Some of us can join committees or take actions, some of us can write letters. Some of us can run for office or work for others that do so. Not everybody can afford the time or the effort to be directly involved in these activities; however every single one of us CAN make a difference every single day. We can pass along news or important information to those that don’t have time themselves. We can spread the word about opportunities to be involved. We can become the person that doesn’t tolerate ill behavior or words. We can be the person that cares and that exhibits the kind of behavior that makes a positive difference. Most of all, we need to represent the America that cares about other people, that stands up for the people that can’t stand up for themselves and that fights for good. We can no longer afford to sit on the sidelines and assume everything will work out. We, each one of us, need to figure out what we can do to help make our country what we want it to be and what we deserve it to be.

Christmas Wreaths? Mmmmmmm

wreath

I’m not talking about the kind of wreath you hang on your door, but rather the kind that you eat! Christmas wreaths are my kids’ all-time favorite thing to eat during the holiday; well, that and fudge! These are very similar to the Rice Krispie treats that we all love, but for some reason, we think these are even better! I’m not sure why we only make them at Christmas.

First of all, there’s no point making one batch because they will be gone quickly. I always double the recipe and we’re good. That gives you some to eat and some to include with your holiday cookie plates.

Recipe (single batch):

  • 30 big marshmallows
  • 1 stick butter
  • 1 1/2 tsp. green food coloring
  • 3 cups Corn Flakes (or similar)
  • Red hots, sprinkles, decorations

Melt the butter and marshmallows in a double boiler (or in pot over very low heat) until melted. Add food coloring until you get to the desired shade of green. Either add the cereal to the pot or pour the marshmallow mixture over cereal in a bowl. Stir to cover. If too thin, add more cereal (I usually add more anyway because I want it to make more). Drop by spoonfuls onto a greased cookie sheet or wax paper.

Shape into wreaths and decorate with red hot candies, red sprinkles, or anything else that you like!

Couple of things here: I have found that shaping them into wreaths is a skill that requires extreme patience (which apparently nobody in my family has). We basically just drop them by spoonfuls onto waxed paper and leave them or scrape into a ball. We will throw some sprinkles on top but definitely don’t shape them into wreaths. If you can do it, I’m sure they’ll be beautiful! They taste just fine either way.

Also, you will find that your fingers will get very sticky very quickly. When they get real sticky and you can’t do anything anymore, if you wash your hands and get the marshmallows all off, you can start over and get through a bunch more.

On a complaining note, I can no longer enjoy these as I’m gluten-free and Corn Flakes and similar cereals are not. I refuse to pay the going price for small boxes of gluten-free cereals and almost all of them have sugar on them, which don’t taste the same. I have discovered that my regular Rice Krispie treat recipe works perfectly with my Rice Chex cereal. In fact, I made three batches of these within a month. Thank you, Chex cereal!

Oh, one more note! When you add your green food coloring, make sure you move your recipe out of the way or it will look like this.

wreath_recipe

Enjoy your holiday and your Christmas wreaths!

 

Feel-Good Moment!

goodness

I’m sure that a lot of you have seen the video of the young man saving a bunny rabbit from the wildfires that are raging in California. When I first saw this video on ABC via Twitter, I was so overwhelmed by different emotions, I needed to react to it.

In the craziness of our everyday lives on top of the politics, hatred, and negativity that we’re living with daily, this was so inspiring to me! It’s so easy to get caught up in the things that we’re dealing with, the things that are problems in our lives, that we sometimes overlook the good that we encounter or we just pass it up on our way to get things done.

The video of this young man risking his life to save a rabbit from the raging fires really hit me. It signifies all that is good in our world. Watching him, I could just feel the emotions he seemed to be experiencing.

I watched this a few times in a row because I just FELT the good in it! I really needed that. Sometimes we get to a place where we really need something good to see, to happen, to make us realize that we really are okay.

Judging by the reactions to this tweet, I’m definitely not the only one to have been affected by this. Let me know how you felt after watching it!

Please check out the video here: Fire Video

Here’s my Twitter response:

Damn… and just like that my faith in humanity is restored. We’re definitely broken right now but THIS? This means we’re going to be okay. Thanks, young man, for being a good person. Our world needs a lot more people like you. I’m sure his mother is none too happy with him tho

and link if you’d like to follow: Tweet

would love to hear about any experiences that you’ve had that have inspired you! I think we could all use a little positive in our life right now. Share your story!

This Long Week

waiting

So this is how I feel this week.

Thanksgiving’s over and it was great! This week we have to get back to normal and take care of our stuff that we ignored last week AND it’s a full one. Seems like this week is a month long, doesn’t it?

This is also the week before I bring out the Christmas spirit and start going crazy! So I clean the house, put some things away, get my stuff ready and in place…and wait for the weekend!

Hope your week is going by faster!

 

 

 

 

Where’s Our Moral Compass These Days?

moral_compass

Daily now, we’re faced with the divisiveness pervading our country. Politics has really played a number with us over the past couple of years, but this isn’t about politics. At almost 60 years old, I have never in my life seen anything like it. I have seen elections play out through the years while both sides put out political ads insulting the other. I remember a time when people were criticized for doing that and that was nothing compared to how it is now. We are being subjected to behavior that is so offensive and unacceptable that my mouth literally falls open at some of what I see and hear. When did we turn into human beings that allow this type of behavior and what are we going to do about it?

I’m going to leave the actual political debates aside here. I am, however, holding our elected officials, individually, accountable for a large portion of our current problems. They are setting the standards and they are the ones lowering them by accepting things that should not be acceptable. To me, this problem is so much bigger than politics. I think, beyond the political culture, the continuing tolerance for ill behavior by SO MANY people in the recent months is shocking. I have a hard time believing what we now consider acceptable. We have to stop blaming the political parties as a whole and look at the individuals involved and hold them accountable for their behavior. This is not a political problem; it’s a humanity problem.

When did it become tolerable to blatantly admit to sexually assaulting women and think that it’s okay?  In fact, even if the abuse is admitted, the victims are still subject to skepticism, doubt, and disbelief. Often, there aren’t even repercussions for these actions. Why do we find it so hard to believe the victim and find it so easy to find excuses for the accused? Why are there different levels of blame based on who it is, whether it’s your political party or based on the color of the person or the nationality of the person involved? When did it become okay for the KKK and other hate groups to be open about their hatred? In what world is it okay for them to spew hate and violence and not even worry about repercussions? I feel like somebody opened that door that we all knew to keep locked and we’re facing what’s there. We know it’s been there, but have been able to keep it at bay until now. We’ve tried hard to remedy these biases and have worked to do better as human beings. I feel like we’ve just been set back by decades. Why aren’t our elected officials, in all capacities, dealing with these issues as a country and not blindly following along party lines? These issues are defining us as a country, as a people. It’s their responsibility to treat these issues accordingly. These topics, like so many others that are now occurring on a daily basis, need to be addressed swiftly and surely. There really is no other acceptable choice. What kind of world do we want to live in? What kind of world do we want our children and grandchildren to be part of? I think it’s time to make that choice and do something about it before we continue to lower our standards as human beings.

The lies that we’re subjected to daily by some of our elected officials and some of the media are also not acceptable. The fact that these falsehoods roll so easily off of their tongues is a bigger problem to me than the lie itself. Since when is it tolerable to simply make things up and put them out there as truth? Even when caught, they feel no responsibility to correct it. These same government officials that we have elected to preserve our rights, to look out for our interests, are just as culpable as anybody else. The race to put through their own agenda has put our health and welfare at risk. Many of them have admitted to not knowing the details of the plans put before them yet are completely comfortable voting on them. Now millions of us are living in fear daily as to what’s going to happen to us. The fact that we entrusted these people to do their due diligence means nothing. They continue to vote in a manner that critically affects those most vulnerable while enabling those most fortunate to continue to line their pockets.

Most of what I read and hear these days is so hypocritical that it angers me to listen. It seems as if everybody has one set of beliefs and absolutely refuses to listen to anything that differs from it. There appears to no longer be a way of working together, of working in the best interest of the people or of simply acknowledging that there’s a right and wrong. People are put on television to excuse others’ words, actions, and behaviors. It’s as if they can make it okay if they can make enough people believe it is. We’ll make up excuses to support our view. We’ll bend the truth as far as we can to look at things the way we want to see them. When did this become okay?

I know that there is a group of people out there that are perfectly fine with the way things are going. They clearly embrace the violence and the hate and are taking advantage of the direction we’re headed. There’s another group of people that are simply unaware of the changes taking place and may not pay much attention to politics or our changing standards. Their world may not have been affected much. That’s pretty tempting given the amount of coverage and mind-boggling accusations being tossed around. It’s easy to tell ourselves that it will work itself out. There’s another group of people, though, that are working hard to fight this culture, to hold themselves and others to higher standards, to uphold the constitution and morals of our country. These are the people that are trying to keep our country great, to maintain our standing as the best country in the world and to look out for each other. That’s the group that I want to be part of.

I want to go back to the world I grew up in, one where there’s a right and a wrong. Right means behaving in a manner that is moral, that is honest and that is appropriate. Wrong is selfish, hypocritical, and negative. I really don’t understand how these two things can be confused. Lies, violence, and inappropriate behavior or words should not be tolerated or excused by anybody. Our humanity has taken a steep dive and I think we’ve continued to move the bar in a negative way and accepted way more than we should have as normal. I don’t know how much longer we can allow this to continue and still remain the country of people that we want to be. I think it’s time for each one of us to say we’ve had enough. We deserve the honor, the integrity, and the respect that our ancestors worked so hard to create for our country. We cannot and should not give that up. We need to raise the bar again; raise our expectations for those that represent us. Hold people accountable for behavior that is not representative of our country. Women, children, disabled people, people of color, people of different religions…nobody… in this world should have to be afraid daily or treated in a substandard manner. Hatred and violence should not be a daily occurrence where we just shrug our shoulders.  I’m tired of being afraid of what our representatives are doing and being embarrassed and angry. We deserve a country that we’re proud of and a government that supports us and puts our best interests first. I think it starts with each one of us and what we can do to change it. Make a phone call or write a letter. Get involved. Vote for whoever represents your values and vote out those that don’t! Let your voice be heard and let your actions be representative of how you want our world to be. Stand up for what’s right and don’t accept less.