To each his own. To me my own.

Posts tagged “News

Stand For Change Day

This Friday, May 4th, is the inagural “Stand for Change” day – a day in which participating schools across the US will attempt to raise awareness of bullying in our youth.

I wasn’t a stranger to bullying as a child. I remember a boy named Randy decided to make me his target in 5th grade. For virtually half the school year he threatened me with his fists and chased me. When I finally told my mother and grandmother about it, my grandmother happened to get off early so she came by the school to pick me up. I felt so brave with her there that I walked right up to Randy with my head held high and planted myself about a foot in front of him. He gripped the front of my t-shirt all the way up to my chin (I still can feel the embarrassment of having my bare chest exposed to everyone) then rared back the other fist to punch me. Lo and behold, here comes my Savior disguised as a white haired lady – belting out of a yellow Ford Pinto and hauling ass across the parking lot. Once Randy saw her, he ran away as fast as he could. He was almost laughed out of class the next day for the incident. Nothing like your family’s love! Incidentally, Randy never bothered me again, and we even ended up becoming close friends in Junior High School.

I’m fortunate not to have experienced any bullying from other females. The same sex can be so competitive, especially in this day and age. Add to that all the social networking sites and internet that we didn’t have back then… well you get my point.

It’s true that today, over 160,000 kids stayed home from school from fear of bullying. FEAR. A word I so despise… especially when paired with intimidation. That type of fear is gut-wrenching, especially when you feel like you’re in it alone. It’s a fear that can escalate into suicidal thoughts, and actions. If that’s not enough to grab our attention, I don’t know what is.

I’m sad to learn only certain states or even lone cities here in the US are participating in this classroom awareness event on Friday – Florida seems to be the largest participant and I applaud them for that. Remember that even if you don’t have young children – bullying has probably affected your life in some way, shape or form. Perhaps you remember how it felt to be bullied as a child – maybe you have grandkids to worry about. Promoting awareness and just plain getting it out in the open is crucial.

There’s no place for hate. We have more than enough hate to deal with as adults – we need to do everything we can to protect our children.

Stand for Change.  http://stand4change.org/

No Place for Hate.  http://www.adl.org/npfh/

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Gateway on the Lake

For some time now, the entrance way into the town of Lake Wylie has harbored the very deserted Waterside Crossing Shopping Center. I couldn’t help but compare it’s sad and desolate appearance with that of my own from several years back, when it’s adjacent boat landing all but became a second home to me. I spent more hours parked in front of that lake than I care to admit – long before I’d ever considered making it my home.

Lake Wylie will always hold a very special place in my heart – it’s the place I chose to start a new life. For sure, I was a stranger in a strange world – but the locals here seemed so friendly and welcoming. Even the fine folks down at the Chamber of Commerce made me feel like I’d known them for years, inviting me to the conference table each visit to sit a spell. I’m almost convinced it’s my own insistent badgering for a new local area map that ushered in the new one. Almost.

I don’t live here anymore, but I still get to cross Buster Boyd Bridge and pass through Lake Wylie on my way home each day. It’s just a given – this is a community that I’ll always love and feel a part of. For the past couple of weeks, I’ve all but ran off the road attempting to look at the reconstruction going on in and around the lake’s abandoned marketplace.

Why? Because it’s being given life again.

Couldn’t squeeze it all in – this is only about half of it.

The new Wylie Gateway on the Lake will feature a 26,000+ square-foot family fun center including a bowling alley, jumphouse and more. Also new will be a hair salon, an Asian Fusion restaurant and a new YMCA. Having joined the Y recently, I’m uber-excited about this addition – which also promises to be the first scheduled opening on April 1st. The old saying ‘you can’t please everyone’ remains tried and true. I have heard that the vibrant colors that were chosen have offended some, while many others approve. Personally, I’m of the consensus that the colors promote a friendly and fun family feel within a vibrant lake community, which is exactly what Lake Wylie needs to boost economic growth. One simply cannot argue the benefit of life being breathed into this location again.

Besides… this place isn’t going to look sad anymore. 🙂

Link to Article in Lake Wylie Pilot

Link to Planning, York Development Group


The Comfortability Factor

An instance happened the other day that I’m unable to shake. I decided to share it with all of you.

Two days ago, the word came for my guy to go back to work. He’s been laid off for several months now – the economy’s really played hell on new construction. Being a mechanic, they have mandatory ‘helpers’ and work together as a team. Needing to start the job immediately, his BA gave him the opportunity to call other laid-off helpers he’s worked with in the past, thereby assuring a good pick for the job. Of all the ones he called – only one was interested in working again. One.

The replies were all along the same line: ‘Uh, I’ll pass on this one, man.’

Are you serious? So you’ve been laid off for HOW long now and a good job comes around and ‘you’ll pass’? Are you really doing that great on unemployment? And is this unemployment check guaranteed to last until the next job opportunity comes beating at your door again?

Sorry… I just don’t get it.

So the next time you see those hefty unemployment numbers on the news, remember this little story. Something tells me the numbers that shift in this particular direction would astound us all.


My 5-minute dedication to Steve Jobs

The world lost an icon in the computer science industry yesterday. Steve Jobs, founder and CEO of Apple computers, lost his long battle with pancreatic cancer. He was 56.

Upon hearing of his resignation a couple of months ago, I knew it had to be very close. Steve would never ‘resign’ from the thing he loved most in life. The thing that had become his life.

He’s the sole reason I’m in the business I’m in today. Why I do what I do. The design and creation of graphics would never have gone the way it has without the typography and graphic integration of the Macintosh computer.

I’d like to share a few of his quotes that I ran upon last night.

“The most compelling reason for most people to buy a computer for the home will be to link it into a nationwide communications network. We’re just in the beginning stages of what will be a truly remarkable breakthrough for most people – as remarkable as the telephone.” ~1985

“Picasso had a saying: ‘Good artists copy, great artists steal.’ We have always been shameless about stealing great ideas… I think part of what made the Macintosh great was that the people working on it were musicians, poets, artists, zoologists and historians who also happened to be the best computer scientists in the world.” ~1994

“Remembering that I’ll be dead soon is the most important tool I’ve ever encountered to help me make the big choices in life. Because almost everything – all external expectations, all pride, all fear of embarrassment or failure – these things just fall away in the face of death, leaving only what is truly important. Remembering that you are going to die is the best way I know to avoid the trap of thinking you have something to lose. You are already naked. There is no reason not to follow your heart…. Stay hungry. Stay foolish. ~2005 Stanford University commencement address

“The computer is the most remarkable tool that we’ve ever come up with. It’s the equivalent of a bicycle for our minds.” ~1990

“My model for business is the Beatles. They were four guys who kept each other’s kind of negative tendencies in check. They balanced each other and the total was greater than the sum of the parts. That’s how I see business: great things in business are never done by one person, they’re done by a team of people.” ~2003

Launching the apple site will really grab you this morning. I’ll give you a preview…

Rest peacefully, Steve. And… thank you.


A Day of Remembrance

This ten-year mark of the September eleventh attacks will be a little different than the prior nine.

What’s sure to be an emotional unveiling of the 9/11 Memorial and Museum will happen this Sunday morning of September 11 2011. It has been a long-awaited and intricately planned project to say the least. Granted, these are my words. I realize there are no ‘appropriate’ words to use to describe the attack itself, it’s Memorial nor the intense emotions that run so deep when one thinks back to that fateful day ten years ago.

This past weekend I watched a 2-hour special on the years of work leading up to the completion of the 9/11 Memorial Site and Museum. All the time, effort and respect shown by everyone involved was nothing short of an amazing story. It had it all – love, grief, courage, oneness. Such an important word in the continued endeavor to heal – ONENESS. I believe the generations that went through these attacks will be working to heal for the rest of their lives.

To me, there could be no more appropriate memorial than this beautiful one that took so long to conceptualize and create. Two seemingly ‘endless’ pools sit on the area where the Twin Towers once stood. They are each nearly an acre in size and feature the largest man-made waterfalls in North America. The large pool of the initial waterfall spawns a second small one in the center which appears to cascade infinitely into the earth. The surrounding bronze panels edging the pools are carefully inscribed with the names of every person who perished in both the 2001 and 1993 attacks. I can’t imagine there being many dry eyes for those citizens witnessing the unveiling of this Memorial, whether in person or on television.

I’ve been told more than once that I ‘dwell’ too much on the most horrific terror attack in modern history. My answer to that is and always will be, so be it. One time when I brought it up to a close friend, I was dismissed with I never want to think about it again – it’s too horrible. It’s something that’s already happened and in the past now. As much as I still love this person, I’ll never forget the impact of hearing those words. Just mere days after the attack, when airplanes had yet to be given clearance to fly in our skies again – my ex husband told me I can’t watch any more of this, I’ve had it. From then on, just about everything else I watched had to be on my own time – adjusted around other shows which seemed to take precedence over 9/11. Again, so be it. I can report with much confidence that I did continue seeking information, and by the grace of God, I got it.

I’ve said this before but feel it bears repeating – I’d rather have nightmares about 9/11 every night for the rest of my life than to ever to forget about it. It’s true each of us are different, and we all have our own ways of dealing with tragedy. I realize this post is only one person’s views of the lasting effects from the largest loss of life from a foreign attack in the US so far. But let us not confuse the term ‘morbid dwelling’ with somber respect and remembrance. The act of remembering September 11th isn’t just black or white – equally as important are the shades of grey in between.

Official 9/11 Memorial Site     9/11 Memorial Webcam


Waterboarding

Aside from the occasional reality show, Discovery and History channels, about the only thing I watch on television is national news channels. I learned a few things about the Warren Jeff’s case in Utah yesterday that were so disturbing I haven’t been able to stop thinking about it. Unfortunately I’m not talking about one of my favorite water sports here.

I’m aware of the bigamy. The child marriages. The alleged ‘brainwashing’. The whole god-like persona this man has assumed in order to maintain control of his sect. I refuse to label any of this as religion – I will however label it as false religion. False religion as in hiding under the word of God to promote his and others own selfish and unspeakable acts. Hey, I realize it’s just my opinion – but it’s what I believe.

As if all of the above wasn’t bad enough…

I must admit, I had no earthly idea what waterboarding meant. Wiki describes this torture as ‘water being poured over the face of an immobilized captive, causing the individual to experience the sensation of drowning’. Apparently there are varying forms of the abuse, and the women of this compound in Utah have put an entirely different spin on it. They are taught to restrict their babies from crying from birth throughout toddlerhood. When the babies cry, they instinctively cup their hands over the babies mouths to ‘quiet’ them. This deprives them of air, thus halting the crying momentarily. As more crying ensues, they repeat this torture until the child is completely exhausted and just falls asleep passes out. By the time the child gets older, they will have been all but voided of their emotions – which was the plan all along. Transformed into a debilitative state of mind, the females become totally reliant on their male elders for literally everything.

This is an absolutely deplorable act. It’s illegal. It’s child abuse in one of the highest forms. It shouldn’t be labeled something as aesthetically or audibly pleasing as ‘waterboarding’. I’ll just call it what it is, thanks – smothering.

As of last night, officials are pondering whether to file formal charges on the adult women with child abuse. Of course they should!! Officials should do anything and everything to take charge of this situation and protect these poor children who have no voice. How could you hand over your 11-year old daughter to a 50+year old man in the hand of marriage rape? Sorry, no mother-of-the-year award for you this go-round. I say charge these women now, and get the children out now. Counseling for undue influence can come at a later date. Know that Warren Jeffs IS replaceable, and will be if convicted – no doubt about that little factoid.

It’s 2011, and these unspeakable acts are still being committed against our children. Simply unbelievable… or is it?


Those darn social networks…

My friend Kim over at What Now? It’s a Matter of Inflection… wrote a very nice post yesterday about how much positive energy she’s gotten out of facebook. Keeping up with friends and family updates on facebook does seem to be of the ‘norm’ nowadays. At the risk of looking like a copycat, I’ve got to run with a prime example that coincides closely with her own post.

I have a rut routine in the morning. First I go straight for my little 7-day container of medicine, pretty much consisting of bp meds and vitamins, scoring either a diet coke or diet Dr. Pepper to down them. Then I’ll grab my iPhone, where I’ll quickly graze facebook and twitter to get any up-to-date news and make sure nobody died (seriously, I’ve found this kind of stuff out on there before). I’ve found I don’t need any rss feed on other news channels, since anything newsworthy will appear on either of these two social networks.

C’mon Bon… what’s your point??

Soooo – I wake up this morning to a facebook post by my 23-year old daughter that reads, “I hate hospitals. Ewwww.” Posted at approximately 0327 hours.

Instant panic. Of course, none of the comments posted afterward allude to what actually happened, which is par for the course. My fingers couldn’t text her fast enough this morning.

Why are you texting her, Bon – why not just call her? This is important, after all!!

Today’s generation of children do not answer their cell phone. Additionally, do not bother leaving them a voicemail. If you do prefer to waste your precious time leaving a voicemail, know that it will sit all alone in it’s inbox for years until tumbleweeds begin to float past it. Our kids today only want a written (short) text which they may respond to AT. THEIR. LEISURE. If you know all this beforehand, it’ll save you a lot of time and trouble. Unfortunately since I’m a first-generation parent of the current generation of kids – I’ve had to learn it all the hard way.

I didn’t receive any reply from my daughter until just now, 1104 hours in the morning. The golden text just arrived telling me she is fine, and it was her friend who had cut his hand wide open. While cutting an apple. At three in the morning. Of course, her phone died while waiting 4 hours in the ER, and since she didn’t go to bed until this morning she couldn’t hear Mum’s text! At least now I can finally sigh very loudly breathe easier knowing that she’s okay. You never stop worrying about your kids. I guess it’ll be the same at any age, 23 or 53.

In closing, I guess Kim and I won’t be closing down our facebook accounts anytime soon! I hope everyone out there enjoys a wonderful weekend. 🙂


Sense and Sensibility

Once again I’ve let time get the best of me, and I miss writing something. Anything. At almost noon on a Saturday morning with housework and errands poking me on the shoulder, I’m reminded one again of that time thing. About two weeks or so ago, I wrote a quick post on my thoughts of crime and mental instability in the world – but never got around to posting it. I guess a day in which time is pressing hard on me is as good a day as any.

I’ve only read a little bit on the case of Jared Lee Loughner, the man who went on the mass killing spree in Toucson, AZ back in January. As of current, he has been declared mentally incompetent to stand trial for his crimes.

When I first heard of this ruling, I admit my initial reaction was that the world needed rid of this worthless piece of garbage – I was very angry. I had to stop for a minute, take a step back and look hard at the situation. If this man really is mentally incompetent, how could I hold any animosity towards him for that? If it’s truly something mental that dictated his actions, something he himself could not control – how on earth could I blame him?

There are so many psychological issues we have to deal with in the world now. Have these ultra-complex issues actually existed the entire time, of which our medical technology is just now scratching the surface? There’s so much out there in the world now that we don’t understand, things we’ll probably never understand. The human brain is the most intensely complex organ in our body. From mild, moderate to severe – mental instabilities weigh more in our society now than ever before.

During a routine visit to my MD recently, even he admitted there just wasn’t enough medical staff dedicated to the many branches of mental illness that we now know to exist. He said because of this, he and his other colleagues are continually having to ‘up their game’ on their education. This is where we are in the world today – not enough professional help, nor understanding of illnesses or imbalances.

When someone who does a wrong or injustice to another, the human in us wants that person to be held accountable. Unless you are specifically trained in the field, it’s difficult or impossible to recognize a mental illness. Simply said, there are many people committing crimes who are not capable of willfully controlling their actions. All you have to do is watch the world news, heck I’ll take a step back and say local news, to see all the senseless crimes being committed.

I must continually remind myself to tote an extra bit of compassion around just for this cause, and I’ll be the first to admit it’s a tough thing to do.


The Royal Wedding

Well, the big day has finally arrived! The Royal Wedding will take place in less than 24 hours. I must ask beforehand that you forgive the sarcastic undertone of this post. You see, for the past couple of weeks I’ve heard more than my share of negative comments and opinions about the Royal Wedding – in turn, this has propelled me into smartass-Bon mode (not good). Allow me to elaborate.

The original title of this post was “Asses that attempt to ruin Royal Weddings“. I have since changed it, but still thought it noteworthy. I didn’t change it because I no longer believe negative people to be asses… I changed it because I didn’t want the word to be in the same sentence as Royal Wedding. So there. (Negative people – that means you’re still an ass.)

Additionally, I will make it my mission to overuse the words Royal Wedding in this post. If this offends you, know that I find that awesome. Now, on to more talk about the Royal Wedding. Because I can.

Most of the posts I see are so very redundant. If you’re so bored and ‘over’ the Royal Wedding, must you use your precious time to talk about it? By doing this, aren’t you allowing even more ‘air time’ to the Royal Wedding? Here’s some food for thought: posting comments of how sick you are of the Royal Wedding translates into how very intriguing and appealing it must be to you. If you’re truly sick of the Royal Wedding, why not simply change channels or read on to something else? Or perhaps there’s something deeper going on than meets the eye, other than the Royal Wedding. (Hey, how am I doing on that overuse thing?)

Here’s my comparison: when the college ball games were all going on a few weeks back, that entire series of games seemed to last for about a year. I know for a fact that I’m not the only person who doesn’t follow or care for it. But I absolutely would not post on Twitter, FB, ABC News, etc.: “No one gives a s**t about college basketball!!” It would be ridiculous. Why? Because yes, people do exist that give a s**t about college basketball.

Well, so what? It’s my status or comment, and I’ll post what I want! Isn’t that the purpose of it all? Freedom of speech, baby – take it or leave it. I choose to take it. So back off.

Okay, yeah it IS your comment. As far as freedom of speech, I beg to differ – we do not have anything of the sort here in America. There’s only a handful of things we may blurt out without risk of offense to others. If we do say something inappropriate we get blasted for it, or even worse, sued. Freedom of speech, pfftthh – sore subject with me. I’ll save that for another post to be listed in the category The Angry American. Coming soon to a blog near you.

Okay Bon. So what’s your point? If it’s my post and I can write about what I want, and I want to write about how much I hate all the hype of the Royal Wedding, what the heck IS your point?

Here’s my bottom line. Very rarely do we the people get the opportunity to enjoy anything good on the news. Everything is terrorism, war and soldiers dying, missing people, rape, murder and catastrophic weather events. The Royal Wedding is a bright spot in the midst of a storm – dare I even say it brings a ray of light and hope to many. I realize that women tend to be more susceptible to swoon over a fairytale romance, but I also know of quite a few men who appreciate it too. Not swoon over it, mind you – but appreciate it. Who couldn’t use an extra serving of love?

I guess everyone’s got something to say about something – this just happens to be mine. Now if you’ll excuse me, I’m off to enjoy a fantastic Royal Wedding with the haters left scurrying behind me. Cheers!!


The Demise of a Planet

Didn’t sleep worth a darn last night. I woke up at 2:30 thinking it was about time to get up, and when I went back to sleep I dreamt a horrible series of dreams.

It was so very real, as most bad dreams are prone to vivacity. I was watching the news on television, and a reporter came on to make the announcement. The earth’s axis had tilted in a most unpredictable manner, and at this time it was strongly recommended that you locate any loved ones to ‘spend time’ with. It was known in my dream just what that translated to, there wasn’t even a question.

The battle began in my head – how do I get my family together? What will my daughter do? After all, she’d be torn between me and her Dad. What about Keith’s daughter? And of course Keith was thinking of his family. How do you go about doing this? The mayhem, oh my gracious, the mayhem that ensued. Every mode of transportation seemed full, gas stations were already in ration, the roads were full of vehicles. Many resorted to walk as far as their feet would take them.

Emotions everywhere were off the charts. There were no dry eyes anywhere to be found. How are you supposed to act when you’re told you won’t be here much longer, that none of us will? How do you choose the appropriate family members to spend your last bit of time with, if they’re local enough to even get to? Would I make it in time to see my precious mother, father and daughter? I finally woke as the decision was about to be made for Keith and I to part ways in order to each be with our families. I tear up as I write this, just as it tore me up in my dream.

What a horrible dream.

But was it really? As I sit here writing this, I begin to tie it in with yesterday’s message. Empowered by the Blood of Jesus. Because if you believe in this Blood, this most precious Blood that Jesus Christ shed for us, and accept it – you’ll never have to say goodbye. What a gift, of which I am so undeserving. Yet it’s there for the taking… Praise God for this.


Will and Kate

Amidst the daily life struggles, including controversy, drama and in-general mean and miserable people – there is a bright spot I have looked forward to for some time now. An event in which I’ve taken the entire day off from work to enjoy watching.

The Royal Wedding.

I’ve always enjoyed reading other people’s comments when it comes to a subject of interest. Over the past few days, a good many comments astound me. The British Monarchy’s facebook page created an event for the Royal Wedding. How about such negative comments on that as “I’ll bet 79% couldn’t give a toss about the wedding” or “So sick of hearing about this, move on to something else already.”

Seriously? You’re sick of hearing about it but you’re going to take initiative to write about how sick of it you are? That takes precious time, my friend! Newsflash – you liked the British Monarchy’s facebook page to begin with… what do you expect to read about?? The news channels are the absolute worst. Every time something is posted about the Royal Wedding, negative comments come flooding in. Have the majority of these les miserables really become so curmudgeoned to the daily routine of life that they are unable to appreciate a good love story anymore?

Maybe it’s just me, but that’s how I see it – and such is life. As for me, this old romantic shall remain upbeat and continue to appreciate a monumentally happy event. After all, who couldn’t use a little happiness?


A Royal Occasion

I did it… I indulged myself. Call me crazy if you will, though I personally prefer the word romantic. This past Monday, I put in for a vacation day on April 29th. This is the date of the Royal Wedding.

Having had ancestors that hailed from Wales, as well as certain parts of Scotland and Ireland, the Royal Family has always held a special place in my heart. Truth be told, in my own lifetime, I believe it all started with Diana. Of course it started with Diana. Was there a person in existence who didn’t love her? She was the epitome of grace, dignity and beauty – with a kind and caring heart. Her tragic death was a blow to the world.

I’ll never forget where I was when I heard the news. My husband, daughter and I were at the beach celebrating our tenth anniversary. That dreaded news, which we’d stayed up late in apprehension of, came during the wee hours of Sunday morning. I had to wear shades to hide my hideously swollen eyes for the remainder of the trip. These memories are still as fresh as if they’d happened just yesterday.

On his eighteenth birthday, Prince William received from his grandmother a new coat of arms, or crest. He chose to commemorate his mother by including a red scallop shell (escallop gules) prominent in the Spencer ancestors’ coats of arms, four times on his – though one must have sharp eyes to catch it. I’ve always loved what we usually refer to as a ‘sea shell’, but never knew of the association with Princess Diana’s own crest or of the commemoration by her son. I find this so very special.

©www.royal.gov.uk

Prince William and his beautiful bride Catherine Middleton (Kate) will have their own fairy-tale wedding on that last Friday in April. I like to think that Diana will somehow be granted a view of her first-born son and his Princess as they begin their life’s journey together as one.

On March 2nd, the website designed for the Royal Wedding was unveiled. Needless to say, I wasted no time popping that little address into my VIP bookmarklets.

So happy for the two of them…


Literary, literally

I was browsing through bookmarks yesterday and was surprised to find my ‘Letter to my Sixteen-Year-Old Self’ was still on the front page of the Simon and Schuster site. I realize this is because nothing else has been posted since they posted mine, but gotta admit – I still like seeing it…

©dearmebooks.com

Me: so uh, I’ve been wondering… could I act all crazy like some Hollywood dude is doing right now and get my writing noticed?

Voice of reality: *clearing throat* uhhh, no Bon – see, you have to be famous beforehand for that to work.

For sheer sheen entertainment purposes, I thought I’d share a copy of Charlie’s most recent tweet. I’ll have to say I’ve been enjoying the literary stance he’s taking…

Happy Friday, everyone!! 🙂


Survivor 22 – Nicaragua

The new season of Survivor is premiering on CBS tonight – I can’t wait!! The show simply never gets old to me. This season is set in Nicaragua and promises to be the most grueling season of earth, wind and fire that we’ve ever had the pleasure of witnessing in any of the past eleven years.

Haters, be gone. Tonight I will have my undisturbed 60 minutes of unparalleled HD reality bliss… bring it!!

©CBS Survivor

Visit official site here


10K

It’s gonna happen to this little blog soon… the 10,000th hit since it started back in late 2009. It doesn’t seem possible, really, that anything I write could be interesting enough for that many people to come by and read – even if it is over the course of time. In any case, I am very humbled by the numbers. If you happen to be customer number 10K, sorry – no happy prize for you. All I can offer is a big smile and a thumbs up! 😀

I’ve had a lot of thoughts running rampant in my head over the past couple of months. Come May of this year, I will have resided at my little condo for three years – my little ‘treehouse in the sky’ as I have referred to so often. Well, I’ve decided I won’t be renewing my lease this year. Just recently, Keith and I decided to make the big jump to combine households at his residence. Needless to say, it’s something we’ve both considered for a long while now. You all know how I feel about timing, that it’s everything… and we both feel more sure than ever that the time is finally right…

Over the next several months, I’ll be busy cleaning out, packing and getting some other affairs in order. It’s amazing what all you can accumulate in three short years. I’m glad to have the extended time to do so, and not have to cram everything into a month’s time, or shorter.

Oh, and have I mentioned how very excited I am?? I mean I’m seriously off-the-charts happy


No Shadow… Spring is Near!!

It’s not gonna be difficult for me to find a subject for me to hop on today…

It’s Groundhog Day, and for the first time in a long awaited while Punxsutawney Phil is not afraid… that’s right folks, NO SHADOW!! Know what that means?

Spring is near!! Spring is near!! Oh gosh… Spring is near!!

The story of Groundhog Day begins with Candlemas, an early Christian holiday where candles were blessed and distributed. Celebrators of the holiday eventually declared clear skies on Candlemas meant a longer winter. The Roman legions, during the conquest of the northern country, brought this tradition to the Germans, who concluded that if the sun made an appearance on Candlemas Day, a hedgehog would cast a shadow, thus predicting six more weeks of bad weather or “Second Winter.” German immigrants brought the tradition to Pennsylvania, but how did Punxsutawney Phil emerge?

In 1887, a spirited group of groundhog hunters from Punxsutawney dubbed themselves “The Punxsutawney Groundhog Club.” One member was an editor of Punxsutawney’s newspaper. Using his ink, he proclaimed Punxsutawney Phil, the local groundhog, to be the one and only weather prognosticating groundhog. He issued this proclamation on Candlemas, and yes, Groundhog Day. Phil’s fame spread, and newspapers from around the globe began to report his Gobbler’s Knob prediction. Info from http://www.visitpa.com/groundhog-day

In related news, February 2nd is exactly the halfway point between the Winter Solstice and the Spring Equinox. It is the winter midpoint or ‘cross-quarter’ day. The coldest, bleakest part of our winter season is now officially half over!

Spring is near!! Spring is near!! Oh gosh… Spring is near!

Visit the official Groundhog Day site: http://www.groundhog.org/


Define IRONY…

Well, actually it came by way of the 5 o’clock news this evening.

There’s a strangeness that no one can quite put their finger on. In a suburb right outside of my lovely town, a little girl was photographed. By a stranger. Playing in the snow. Zipped up tight to her nose in fluffy coatings and wintry garb. That’s right folks, a picture was taken.

Let me say first, I’m not trying to make light of any sort of potentially dangerous situation, particularly that which involves a child. But I’ve gotta say, there are some things with this ‘story’ that just don’t jive well with me.

The story as told by an 8-year old girl starts with her playing down the street from her house, and looking up to see a man taking a snapshot of ‘her’. She ran home to tell her mother. Mom is then broadcast all over the evening news rolling her eyes and saying “the thought of a sick, perverted man having a picture of my daughter infuriates me”. Every. Ten. Minutes. Well yeah lady, I have a daughter. That particular thought would infuriate me too.

But.

Let’s say for the sake of argument – there was this man going down the road with his wife driving (the little girl reported he was in the passenger seat – with no description of the driver) who decided to take a few rare southern snow pics, like I had the urge to do my own self today. The little girl (or other children) just happened to be in the general vicinity of where the camera was faced. Hell, it’s happened to me many times – I’ve just never been ‘accused’ of anything. But then again… I’m female. Hey, somebody had to say it…

Through many years of photography, I of course have my own photo library. Rather than a subject who happens to be laced, zipped and velcroed all the way up to their nostrils in the dead of winter – I’m quite sure a few of mine are on a public beach (Gasp**) in bathing suits! Certainly they weren’t the intended subjects of the frame – but what if they had been? This is what it’s come to. Yes, this. Here and now.

I must give credit to my Dad and his eagle-eye on this subject, as it was he who called and brought me up to speed on the said situation-at-hand. Yes, it’s pretty bad when you can’t be your normal self anymore. To be forced to avoid situations we’ve not only been accustomed to all our lives but have been raised to admire, respect and enjoy. Now we have to worry about staring a little too long, if at all… whether anything we say might be perceived as a prelude to an abduction… not to mention the subjects that might happen to be in the general vicinity of our cameras… need I even go on? And if you don’t worry about it… well you’d better worry about it. I don’t wish to downplay the possibility of a legitimate threat on this particular story. What I wish to up-play is the fact that we can’t snapshot a timeless moment anymore, without the fear of consequences.

Because this is where we are.

But Bon, where on earth is this irony you speak of? You really mucked this title up – wayyy off!!

Here we go, folks. In between sessions of Mom rolling her eyes and speaking of Joe Pedophile staring at photos of her little girl – a lighter, more airy segment flashed up where us viewers got the chance to see submitted photos of the snow aired on tonight’s edition of the local news. How sweet and funny they were, too – most submitted anonymously. Anything from snowmen, to sledding, to children playing, to pets playing, to…. hey BACK UP just a minute. Did you just say children playing????

IMHO the persons behind each of these two segments had to be on two different wavelengths, in two different buildings. In two different cities. With no communication tools. Ahem, you get my drift. Speaking of drifts…

Just be careful where and what you point those cameras at.

Story as seen on WBTV news


A White Christmas for the southeast

Really, Charlotte… snow??  Yes!! We actually got our white Christmas after all!!

Imagine that.

According to National Weather Service statistics, the Charlotte area hasn’t seen the likes of a white Christmas in 63 years. Since the NTS doesn’t count anything below an inch on the ground Christmas day as a ‘white Christmas’, 1947 was the last recorded date of snowfall on Christmas – which totalled around 5.5 inches on that day.

View from my third-floor treehouse this morning.

The forecast has made headlines for days now. Not just us, but many of the southeast area states of the US did in fact receive a packet or more of snowfall for Christmas this year. Our such packet didn’t arrive until after sunset last night, but it came nonetheless – and it’s still coming! Heck, it’s still snowing in Georgia this morning, and it was snowing in Myrtle Beach around 7am. It’s funny though… there doesn’t seem to be any bad roads out in the immediate vicinity. The accident rate is low so far, and the parking lots and roads look clear. It’s almost as though God brought us lovely snowfall that we can enjoy and get around well in. What a blessing!

My balcony got a little snow as well. So far my geranium, fern and palm tree don’t mind a bit!

This morning I was reading the probability ratings for various cities across the US (as well as different parts of the world) on the ‘probability’ of snow on Christmas. I found it hilarious that Charlotte, NC ranks right alongside Los Angeles, CA and Phoenix, AZ – all three sporting a whopping 1% probability rating. I heart Wikipedia (umm, except for that leakage thing)… so go ahead, see if your city is on the list and what it ranks. Wiki factoids and probabilities for a White Christmas in your city

Where I usually type my little blog… this morning I very much enjoyed a memorable wintry view.

It’s funny to see all the facebook statuses and pictures posted last night and into today from friends and family. The snow seems to have lifted spirits everywhere, especially households with small children who enjoy getting out and playing in it. Snow on Christmas has just put a whole different ‘air’ out, so to speak. Lighter, brighter and more joyful souls abound everywhere… dare I say, I can almost feel a renewed sense of hope for the new year to come? Whatever the case may be… it is very refreshing.


Mary Elizabeth

She is finally at peace. Born Mary Elizabeth Anania, her sunrise was July 3, 1949; sunset, December 7, 2010. Elizabeth passed away on a Tuesday at her home in Chapel Hill, NC after a long and courageous battle with breast cancer.

Although I might not have agreed with some of her political stances, I admire and respect the lady for reasons different than what one may expect.

  • Her family meant everything to her. Through the years she managed a very elegant balance between her home life with her husband and children, her professional career as an attorney, then later becoming her husband’s chief policy advisor during a presidential bid.
  • Her courageousness and perseverance was inspiring to all who have fought a disease and those who continue to fight.
  • She maintained such grace and poise after their oldest son Wade was killed in a car crash (age 17) in 1996. I cannot imagine what strength it must take to go on after the death of one of your own children.
  • She lived her private life on a public stage. Yeah, I’m gonna go there. The level of humiliation she must have endured after her husbands indiscretions came to light had to have been gut wrenching. I simply can’t think of any other term to describe it.

In September 2006, Edwards released a book, Saving Graces: Finding Solace and Strength from Friends and Strangers, focusing on the death of her son and her illness. In May 2009, she released a second book, Resilience: Reflections on the Burdens and Gifts of Facing Life’s Adversities, further detailing her illness, the deaths of her father and son, the effect of these events on her marriage, her husband’s infidelity, and the general state of health care in America.

On December 6, 2010, Elizabeth’s family announced that she had stopped cancer treatment after her doctors advised her that further treatment would be ‘unproductive’. The cancer had metastasized to her liver, and she had been advised she had several weeks to live. Her family members, including her estranged husband John, were with her. It was on this day she posted her last message on Facebook:

You all know that I have been sustained throughout my life by three saving graces – my family, my friends, and a faith in the power of resilience and hope. These graces have carried me through difficult times and they have brought more joy to the good times than I ever could have imagined. The days of our lives, for all of us, are numbered. We know that. And, yes, there are certainly times when we aren’t able to muster as much strength and patience as we would like. It’s called being human. But I have found that in the simple act of living with hope, and in the daily effort to have a positive impact in the world, the days I do have are made all the more meaningful and precious. And for that I am grateful.

Elizabeth always felt that Wade was an angel, and that one day she would be able to see him again. Somehow I feel you’ve already found Wade, dear Elizabeth. May you rest in peace now.

Factual source: Wikipedia


Eleven-thirty….

The last day of the month. I continually ask myself just where did this year go? Tomorrow, I’ll dig out the little Christmas tree here at work and decorate it. It seems as though I only put it away a couple months ago.

Ever known a Pot Stirrer? I think all of us knows at least one, perhaps more. The person who thrives on creating and feeding havoc. An individual who insists on being the one to ‘release the cracken’ (insert trademark here). Well, it’s been released all right… or should I say busted and ‘leaked’.

I know there are varying opinions out there on this, and I’ll go ahead and admit that I’m with the majority who believes in federal prosecution. I mean good grief, you just don’t see the other countries government or dictators secrets being busted wide open. Sure, I believe in freedom of speech as long as it doesn’t compromise our safety. Newsflash – pissing people off compromises our safety. Okay, that’s been festering for a couple of days… thanks for letting me get it off my chest.

The heat’s running continuously, it’s rainy and it’s COLDDD. I know it’s the time of year for it, but I still don’t have to like it. Chillish temps and undesirable-looking landscapes make for a grumpy Bon in the morning. Why, even the lake screamed Delores Claiborne up at me during my morning commute. How many months again until Spring? I’m off to search for that app.