Winter 2015

Living in the northeast has always been a winter challenge but this year has been the deepest freeze yet. When the temperature is below zero I don’t care what anyone says, I’m cold.
It has snowed every weekend for the last five weeks. Not a huge accumulation, just enough to be shoveled and work the snow blower.
Now, the best part of this freeze is the time to sit down and write. I’ve actually started working on my novel. I have lots of characters that are developing in my head every day, and every night I might add.
Sleep has been replaced by what my character’s mother did or what her father’s thinking. It’s exciting, fun, and a bit debilitating. My characters are often more real to me than the people I’m talking to.
So, thank you winter 2015!

Reflections on the My Mother-in-Law

ImageIts been a long summer for my family and I.  My mother-in-law passed away from ovarian cancer on August 12.  We spent a lot of time with her and during that time had some time to think about the years that led us to that point.

Love is a strange thing that grows on us year after year.  People we have just met, because we married their son or daughter, are now our family.  Is it easy to accept them as family?  Well, sometimes yes, sometimes no.  The bottom line is they are the family of the one you love and as your life together progresses you learn quickly that a good relationship with their family is going to make things better and easier for both of you.

Sure there may be differences.  You were brought up in different areas, have different customs and/or traditions but you have one thing in common, you both love the same person.  That mutual love is the foundation that your relationship should be built upon.  Will you always agree?  Of course not, that’s why there’s vanilla and chocolate.  Does that mean you can’t get along?  Hopefully not.  We need to see and accept each other’s differences as we form a lifelong bond.

Always look for the good things, things to admire about them and dwell on that.  Look for the things you do have in common and emphasize them.  Time will eventually take away some of what you have.  As we cared for my mother-in-law and looked back at her life, I began to realize things I knew but never really thought about.

How she raised five boys and a girl.  How she didn’t work until they were grown and then never really had a job to talk about.  Her life was devoted to her family and not just her sons and daughter but brothers and sisters, aunts and uncles…both hers and her husband’s.  By the time I came along she had a family and family life.  I was an outsider but only for a short while.  She treated me more like a peer than a daughter-in-law.  She loved to have a good time and loved music and dancing.  Just two short years ago she was dancing at my son’s wedding as everyone watched on in awe.  Eight-six years old and dancing dance after dance.  She had a young spirit even at that age.

As I look back on her and her life I can only admire the things she’d done.  Did I appreciate her forty-six years ago?  Not really.  I was trying to impress her so she would l ike me.  As I grew and our relationship grew I realized I had not given her the credit she deserved.  Was she perfect?  No, not then nor now but she was a loving mother who cared about her family.  At times my strength led her to believe I didn’t need her and she also thought well,  I had my own mother.  I took her lack of interference as not caring, but I was wrong.  It is so easy to accept what we think instead of what really is.

I write this in honor of my mother-in-law and pray that she’s found the peace she so well deserves.

She showed me that as we age our family becomes even more important to us.  Friends are nice and good to have but family is what really matters.  At eight-eight, she lived a good long life.  When she found out she had cancer she said, “I am ready to die.  I had a good life and all my children are grown and happy, I’m ready.”

You can type away on a blogging site!

You can type away on a blogging site!



The obvious answer would be blogging, but there’s more to it than that.  Writing has always been a passion of mine.  I was one of those kids who loved it when the teacher said, “I want you to write blah, blah, blah…”  My little mind would jump with glee at the thought of putting pen to paper and my thoughts into words.  I realized not everyone shared my enthusiasm when my girlfriend said, “Are you crazy?  Another writing assignment and you’re happy about it?”  My friend’s remarks didn’t phase me though, I got to write something and that was all that counted. As time went on my writing took the form of letters to friends and family.  I would write four and five page letters, more like little novels.  I was descriptive and wrote about everything I could think of.   When my boyfriend (now husband) went in the service he got a two or three page letter from me every day for two years.

But somewhere along the line other things got in the way.  When I graduated from high school, and was practically engaged, I felt an obligation to my parents and didn’t want to spend their money on college when I knew I’d be getting married so I went to business school instead of college. I got a job as a medical secretary when I finished business school.  I have to say I did like my job and typing up the medical reports for the Assistant Director of Psychiatry was very interesting.  We did get married by the way, and that put an end to my short career.  Four children followed and again my only writing was in the form of letters to family and friends.  (There were no computer back then in the stone age of the sixties and seventies.) When my kids got older I went back to work.  This time for an attorney and for almost twelve years I was a legal secretary.  I can still write a will from memory.  “I hereby give, devise and bequeath….”  when that job turned out badly due to a personality issue with the boss, I went to a school district.  First as a secretary to the Superintendent of Schools but then to technology.  I started out as a “software specialist” and I got to write the technology newsletter and design the school website.  It was easy to design back then, I mean the website, the software did all the work.  I was writing again though in a different capacity and it was fun.  An upgrade took me to Director of Technology and though I still did some writing, grants, proposals and the like, it wasn’t the same.

Then came retirement and I found Hub Pages.   Now I was writing again.  Any kind of story or piece I wanted and I loved it!  Someone on Hub Pages mentioned Word Press, a blogging site.  A place where I could write my feelings in the form of a blog.  This is like writing letters!  I am truly, back in my element.  I feel like a teenager all over again.  I can tell you what I’ve been doing and what my family’s been up to.  I can tell you about the weather and what’s going on in the neighborhood.  Did you know I love Las Vegas, or that I have seven grandchildren?  How about photography?  I love to take pictures and I’m looking into buying a new camera.  I like the one I have, its a Canon Power Shot, but I want a DSLR.  I think I’m going to go with the Canon Rebel. Here, on this site, I can write like I think.  I can write like I talk.

This is a blogging site!  This is a discussional or informational site….a place where I can combine my ramblings with providing useful information, well sometimes and maybe not at the same time, but I can blog!  Why Darren Rowse says on his Blogging for Beginners site said that blogging is, “‘A frequent, chronological publication of personal thoughts and Web links.”  See what I mean?  Personal thoughts!  I can definitely do that.  Blogging is like a web journal…I can do that too. So here I am on a blogging site, blogging!  I hope as I continue to blog I am able to improve my blogs, hone my craft and write things worth reading.  Hope you have a day full of great blogs!

Movies – I Love the Classics

Saturday matinees were a must when I was a kid.  There was plenty to do but Saturday afternoon was reserved for the movies, when there was a good one playing at the local theater.  Those were the days you could let children not only walk to the theater alone but go and watch a movie alone.  Imagine!

Add to Saturday matinees, The Million Dollar Movie series on Channel 11 and Chiller Theater.  Quite a randomly gathered group of movies to watch and I loved every one of them.

Million Dollar movie was on every night at 7:30 pm and then again at 11:00 pm.  I think on weekends it was on once or twice during the day.  The best part was the same movie played for a whole week.  You could watch the movie up to sixteen times in one week.  Don’t laugh, I saw “Yankee Doodle Dandy” that way.   I was just so fascinated with James Cagney as a song and dance man and a great one at that!  There was a great variety of films offered.

Chiller Theater hosted by the always ghouly Zacherly was on every Saturday night.  Oh the glorious monster movies back then.  None of this blood and gore.  Most things were implied.  You never really saw the end result of Dracula’s capture of his prey.  Your imagination was allowed to fill in the blanks.

But I digress.  There were other classics like film noir and westerns and war movies.  Such a variety you could never get bored.  Blockbusters and historical films rounded out your choices.  You couldn’t wait to see Audie Murphy re-enact his life story in the war or Jimmy Stewart talking to his invisible rabbit!

What about the stars?  Oh the movie stars were all handsome and glamorous.  Who doesn’t love a movie with Clark Gable?  So, he had big ears but he was still sexy and women loved to watch him.  Betty Davis could make you love her and hate her all in the same movie!

I’ve written a series on the Academy Awards.  I’m only up to the sixties but I’ve reviewed some of the all time greats.  I’m not saying I saw them all as first run movies but they were on TV.  Remember Million Dollar Movie?  Movies like “Going My Way” with the inimitable Bing Crosby and the ever lovable Barry Fitzgerald.  What about “Gaslight” with Ingrid Bergman and Charles Boyer?  I was on the edge of my seat trying to figure out if Ingrid Bergman’s character was crazy or Charles Boyer was a rat!

The costumes, the music, the scenery, all classic just like the movies they appeared in.  Everyone remembers Scarlet O’Hara’s dress made out of green draperies!

I’m not saying movies today aren’t good, I’m just saying they will never be classics like the movies of old.  They don’t have the timbre the old movies had and there’s a little bit of class missing.


“The Grapes of Wrath”

You can never miss watching a classic movie.  One of the best places to catch one is on Turner Classic Movies.  If you haven’t watched one yet, treat yourself.

If you’d like to learn more you can check out my Academy Awards series on Hub Pages where my tagline reads ““Bringing you movies that are part of your memories.” My Profile lists all my hubs and can be found at


“Why Do We Hub”

Since I mentioned HubPages in my first post, I thought I’d add a link to one of the hubs I wrote about why we write hubs.  You may like to read it and learn more.

Hub Pages is such a unique place.  Not only can you write about anything you’d like, much like here on WordPress, but you become part of a community of people from around the world.  As you become part of the community you make friends.  You begin to learn about each other’s lives and care about them like the friends you’ve had all your life.  You learn about their different cultures and find some great recipes along the way as well.

Hub Pages is a writers’ community.  A place to write and stretch your wings as you try to hone your craft of writing.  There are hubs to help you write, hubs to teach you how to write, and hubs to encourage your writing.  It is truly a great place if you just like to write for the fun of it or if you are a serious writer.  There are many authors on Hub Pages that share not only their wonderful works but their talents and expertise.  I can’t tell you enough what a wonderful place Hub Pages is for a writer.

Oh, did I mention you can get paid too?  I’m not saying you’re going to be a millionaire by any means, but you can earn a little money on the side as your expertise on Hub Pages and your followers grow.  Of course Google plays a part in ranking your Hub Pages and leading others outside the community to your work but you can earn some money.

So, the bottom line here is if you are a writer that enjoys writing (seriously or just for fun) Hub Pages is a great place to be.  There are forums you can join to learn more and there are tutorials by the Hub Pages staff.

Hope you enjoy!

Introduction to Me

Today's software makes anyone look good.

Today’s software makes anyone look good.

This is my first blog and my first post.  I know it’s going to take time to learn my way around but I have a feeling its going to be fun too.  Yes, that’s a photo of me and yes, its been re-touched….ah, the wonders of the Internet and software that lets you touch up a photo!  Of course its still me, but a few lines have been removed.  Obviously I didn’t figure out how to remove the shine.   The eyes are mine though, honest.

Just a taste of the wonders that technology offers us in photography.  Now its not just models that can look good in photos.  If you want to take the time, its there for you to use. Imagine erasing all those lines or changing your eye color to blue or green. There’s more to life than looks though, its your personality that counts. The goodness of your soul and how you treat people. You won’t be remembered for your facial make-up but your spiritual make-up!

Well, this is quite an introduction … I promise there will be little more about me but more about my work, likes, family, and maybe even you!  Thanks for reading and I hope we get to become friends and share information.

If you’ve ever been to Hub Pages there are lots of great tutorials on photography there.   Well, you will also learn I have a tendency to ramble so bear with me to keep finding out the facts and please feel free to let me know what you’d like to talk about.