Monday, December 28, 2020

Kitten Curl

If any animal knows how to relax, I would vote for a kitten.
Many events in the past few months have made me wish to emulate this most restful pose. On a few occasions, I've been able to do so without any guilt whatsoever.
(Wait...shouldn't I be able to do it any time I like with no guilt?)
Yet in my view, a fulfilled life requires action, decision-making, and moving forward with goals, whether large or small. They can range from finishing my next manuscript to making a single phone call to communicating effectively with my little sister to improving my skills in playing the piano and ukulele. (I'm already pretty good on the saxophone!)
I don't set New Year's goals. I set them all year long!
How about you? Are you traditional New Year's goal setter? Or do you prefer to see what life brings to you, and act surprised?

Monday, December 21, 2020

Santa's New Sleigh

As those of us who didn't know before has most likely learned this year, the only thing certain is change.
Go, Santa!

Monday, December 14, 2020

Don't Sign Up!

I try to do my bit for community events, I really do. I like to help, but sometimes I have to wonder if anyone really wants it.
Make treats for last year's New Year's party? 
Sure! I'll do that.
But does anyone want to EAT them?
That's can be honest. If you had the two offerings below to choose from, which one would you pick? (Notice that the box on the left as NO missing cupcakes...not one!)
And check out this nearly empty holiday goodie tray.
But I have another question for you.
If you spent SO MUCH TIME making such attractive treats, would you really want to watch people destroy them with their teeth?
The less effort to accomplish the same amount of sweetness, the greater enjoyment in Shirley's world!
Are you a gorgeous treat-maker?
Or are you also a graduate of the Dr. Seuss school of cupcakes?

Monday, December 7, 2020

Cat In A Coat

I don't know about where you live, but baby, it's cold outside. We had snow this morning. Just a little, but if it lands on the car and ground and stays there, you know it's cold enough for a blanket at night.
It's true that animals have fur to keep them warm. According to my understanding, as long as animals are kept outside, they can acclimatize to any weather, as long as they have shelter from the wind. (I do wonder about short-haired animals. I just don't know.)
Our cat Sage loves to crawl into plastic bags...I know, you might wonder about her mental state, and you'd be right...but this time she crawled into Bob's coat. (Do you see her tail?)
All she wants for Christmas is to sleep inside, but she's too spastic for that. She's got a perfectly comfortable padded box on top of the fireplace insert on the porch. There's even residual fireplace heat, and treats...always treats in her comfy quarters when we take her outside for the night.
Maybe she wants a coat now, too...
Do you like the cold? (You can always put more on, but can only take so much off without being arrested!) Or do you prefer hot weather? (It's never too hot for a hottie like you!)

Wednesday, December 2, 2020

Beyond a Bed of Roses

I've heard of a bed of roses, but the people in this household thought outside the flower box.
 Why stop at roses? Why not a bed of a bunch of different colored flowers in various varieties? It makes a unique yard decoration and generates smiles.
Do you like roses? 

Monday, November 23, 2020

Boring Clothes

Once upon a time, I substitute taught at an elementary school for a week. It wasn't until Thursday, when I wore a t-shirt and jeans to work, that anyone commented on my clothes.
A young boy stopped in front of me, looked up with earnest eyes, and asked, "Where's your costume?"
Puzzled, I replied, "What costume?"
Sighing at my lack of comprehension, he explained, "Every other day you wore a costume, but today you're not." He gave a decisive nod. "I like your costumes."
That was when I realized that my definition of "everyday clothes," worn Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday, had been interpreted by this young lad as "costumes."
On Friday, I made sure to wear one of my own interpretation of everyday clothes. He was satisfied.
One other time a young woman approached me with, "I used to mix you and your sister up." 
(My sister Rebecca lived in the same town I did at the time. Can YOU tell who is who?)
The young woman continued, "But now I can tell you apart because you always wear colorful clothes and your sister wears regular clothes."
About five minutes later, Rebecca showed up, and we laughed at my sparkly shirt and swirly skirt that I'd sewn fake coins onto after market, while she wore a white collared shirt and khaki trousers.
"Boring" is a matter of interpretation. Someone who likes traditional clothes would be very uncomfortable showing up with sparkles on their chest and socks that glow in the dark. There's no right or wrong, there's just you!
Are you a costume clothes kind of person? Or are you more comfortable in traditional clothing?
(Did you guess the correct sister? In the picture, Rebecca is wearing the largest earrings (pink.) Mine are sparkly little dolphins to match the rhinestones on my shirt!)

Monday, November 16, 2020

Ornery Eggs

I'm currently taking a break from eating eggs, the evil tricksters, acting as if they are innocently sitting in their individual little holders, comfortable as can be, until you try to TAKE ONE OUT!
Then they rebel in the messiest way possible, clinging to the carton as if their little lives depended on it, the top part of the shell crumbling in the hopeful eater's fingers. 
Those stubborn eggs fight back even though they are no longer viable after being refrigerated for so long.
Why? Are they haunted by the chicks-that-could-have-been?
Do you like eggs? What's your favorite way to eat them?

Monday, November 9, 2020

Shark Feet

When Carolyn and I were in the store, we saw some slippers that we couldn't believe.
Then Carolyn got too close...
...and the slippers caught up to her!
Shark bites!
It looks like they're smiling. What could it hurt to go closer?
Would you enjoy sticking your feet into these mouths? 
Or do you prefer a more subtle kind of footwear?

Monday, November 2, 2020

Scattered Money Game

Look what I found when I cleaned my office!
Yes, the money is made of coins, and some people don't particularly like coins. That was the case with my son Michael, whose money it was, and said I could have the coins, even the ones ALREADY.rolled up.
(Nah-nee-nah to him!)
His brother Brian had a different approach to scattered money fun. In an unexpected encounter with Brian, who is having a birthday this week (so glad you're my boy, Brian!) I was helping him clean his room when he was in high school. Near the door of his room, he picked up a handful of coins. He glanced at the assortment of quarters, dimes, nickels and pennies, then threw them across the room where they landed in the stuff we hadn't reached yet.
Astonished that he hadn't put them in his pocket or a cup on his dresser, I asked, "Why did you do that?"
He grinned. "Now I can look forward to finding them again when I clean the rest of my room."
I call that exceptionally creative thinking.
Do you like coins?

Monday, October 26, 2020

Creepy Eyes

When my sister and I were shopping last year, we noticed something very odd on several displays throughout the store.
The eyes were odd.
Apparently, someone had found a pack of fake eyeballs and had a heyday.
Here's a "before new eyeball surgery" picture:
And here's an "after eyeball surgery" photo (below.) 
They were staring at us from everywhere...
...high and low...
...seemingly happy with their oh-so-open eyes.
It appears that a smile can get you through a lot
We didn't stay long.
Would you want to be in the spotlight with all these eyes on you?

Monday, October 19, 2020

Bunny Shadow

Some people may have an opposite opinion, but I'm actually fond of dressing up, so Halloween appeals to me.
I loved this bunny reaching for something different in life, making him/herself big and possibly scary, certainly creating something knew for him/herself.
It's a great inspiration, for Halloween, or for life in general.
Do you like reaching for new things in life, or are you more comfortable with the same routine?
Do you like wearing costumes?

Sunday, October 4, 2020


When we took a 4-wheel drive ride down to the river bottom, we enjoyed the shade of the colorful cool autumn leaves and the sight and sound of running water.
Carolyn was especially willing to be the star of a fashion-magazine-worthy photo shoot.
She knows all the best poses.
When we turned to go, imagine my surprise at seeing the most energy efficient fire I've ever come across.
 Is it the red color that keeps you warm? Or the mental suggestion planted by the hot yellow word, "fire?" Does your food just taste warm because you think it is? Or do you pack a sandwich?
Do you like campfires?
Or are you a forced-air furnace type of person?

Sunday, September 27, 2020

Sign Fails

Proofreaders needed!
If a shopper couldn't read, he or she would get the wrong impression of the 3-pack refill wands mentioned in this sign. 
They'd mistakenly think the wands were only worth 3 1/2 stars (count 'em!)
But perhaps the "4.4 star rating" is wrong.
Whatever the truth, this information simply doesn't match. It messes with my head.
When presented with two choices at a waffle shop, I knew instantly which one I'd choose. 
I'd eat savory over sweat any day.
When I pointed the spelling error out to the manager, she was surprised that it didn't say, "sweet."
Does correct spelling matter to you?

Thursday, September 17, 2020

Weird Shirt

 When someone told me they could never find anything to wear at a thrift store, I thought it was an odd statement.  All you have to do is spend enough time and be willing to make repeat visits to stock your wardrobe.

But then I found this weird shirt. If this is what she saw, then I can imagine why she'd hurry out of the store that didn't carry her style.

It's hard to even take a picture of it to show its real strangeness. It's a short sleeved t-shirt with two long sleeves sticking out of the front at about waist level.

What's that all about? Is it some kind of t-shirt baby carrier where you put the baby's legs in the long sleeves and carry the child against your tummy?

Or are you supposed to wrap the long sleeve parts around your waist and tie them in the back? Or in the front?

Or was it made for someone who has four arms?

What do you think it's for?

Monday, September 7, 2020

Ran Out Of Paint

When I first saw this shirt at the thrift store, I was attracted by the bright red flowers and intense green leaves. I actually considered adding it to my large collection of thrift store t-shirts, even though I don't need any more. Yet this one could possibly be worth shoving some of the others over to make more closet space.
And then I turned it around...
What the HEY? Who didn't finish their job?
That back side was the deciding factor. This shirt was not going home with me. I didn't want to give anyone following me a headache from wondering why there was a colorful butterfly and only outlines of flowers and leaves.
I know, I know, this is one of those artsy intentional designs, like flood pants (meaning ones that are a few inches above the ankle but awkwardly longer than capris...I got teased so much for being tall in public school that wearing pants hovering above my ankles only takes me back to those unpleasant "King Kong Shirley" days. I won't wear them! They're a fashion faux pas in a plot to undermine the confidence of unusually tall people who thought they left their days of teasing behind! But I digress.)
Who thought up the unfinished painted shirt design, anyway? 
Lazy people?
Maybe not. Maybe it's just me and my uneducated design mind. 
Let's find out.
Do you like this shirt?
(Do you like flood pants?)

Monday, August 31, 2020

Car Color Game

When I was a child, we sometimes traveled a from New Jersey across the country to visit my grandparents in Utah and uncles and aunts in California, Oregon, and Idaho.
In order to pass the time while rolling down the highway for several days in a row in the 1960's, we played games such as "The Alphabet Game," (click to see the rules. It's the first one on the list, followed by several others, most of which we never played) The License Plate Game, (4th on the list linked above) and the Car Color Game (not listed on the link.)
The Car Color Game involves choosing a color and counting how many cars you see in that color. The first one to whatever pre-determined number is set (1, 5, 20, 50, whatever you can agree on) is the winner!
I tended to choose my favorite colors: bright yellow, orange, green, or red, if one of my other many siblings didn't yell them out first. Funny thing about it, though, is that I don't ever remember winning.
As I recall, my older brother usually chose white, which, while at times a useful color (or absence of color, depending on who you talk to), is also one of the most boring colors on the planet, in my opinion.
But my recollection also serves to remind me that this brother of mine almost always won the game.
I wonder why?

Monday, August 24, 2020


My 9-year-old granddaughter went shopping with me at the thrift store, and guess what? She found some shoes that fit! When she asked if I would please get them for her, I took this picture and sent it to her dad (my son) to see if it was ok for her to tip-toe home in these orange foot confections.
While waiting for his reply, my granddaughter changed her mind about the shoes, deciding that they looked oh-so-cute, but ended up not feeling oh-so-good after all.
Style is so subjective. What one person might think is a dream come true could be seen by someone else as a nightmare.
When I ask Carolyn how she'd like her hair done, she usually says I can pick. "I trust you," she says.
Well, I have rather quirky tastes, but since Carolyn can't see her hair, she doesn't complain.
Actually, I often take pictures of her hairstyles because she can't really maneuver the hinged mirrors in her bathroom that allow her to see the back of her hair, and she almost always lights up with a smile and says, "I love it!"
This would fit in a Dr. Seuss book.
And this fancy Arabian Nights Princess one is made with a necklace and hair clips.  
Would you call your style Traditional? Conservative? Chic? Artsy? Casual? Tomboy? Or just put-some-clothes-on-that-fit and go outside?

Monday, August 17, 2020

Sticky Cat

When Carolyn changed her bedding, she thought that pulling the blanket off her bed would make the cat hop off.
But something made the cat stick to the blanket even as it slid off the bed.
lt could have been her claws stuck in the blanket.
It could have been static electricity holding her in place.
It could be a huge wad of chewed gum.
Or it could be that this cat loves Carolyn so much she doesn't believe that anything Carolyn does will hurt her.
How often do you change your bed linens?

Monday, August 10, 2020

St. George Opoly

When I was a kid, I learned how to play Monopoly, but I was never a big fan of it. It was rather stressful trying to decide if I should buy a property, and I always felt badly when someone landed on my property and I was supposed to make them pay me money for it. 
Since it was such a dreary game, I could hardly believe my eyes when I saw that it had a version made for a TOWN. How many separate towns was it made for? Who would buy it?
Would you?


While on a ride in the mountains in a side by side, I was startled to see a white spaceship in the sky. When I whipped out my phone to take a picture, Bob kindly stopped the vehicle so I could focus on the anomaly.
But I zoomed in I could see that it wasn't a spaceship.
It was one of the most unusual clouds I'd ever seen.
Do you like cloud watching?
What's the most unusual one you've seen?

Monday, August 3, 2020


There's no age limit to pinwheels. You can have them as an adolescent or as an adult, too. 
Carolyn and I both like them, and she ended up getting some.
But where to put them?
Bob had an idea to put them outside Carolyn's office window so she could watch them spin, He actually drilled holes in the porch railings, hero that he is. How cheerful it is to watch them spin and catch the light.
Did you have pinwheels as a child?
Do you like them?

Monday, July 27, 2020

Enough Signs?

I saw some pine nuts for sale on the side of the road. 
Actually, how could I NOT see that they were for sale?
I only hope that they manage to sell enough pine nuts to pay for the poster paper and markers.
Do you like to advertise? Do you think this method is a good one?
And most importantly, do you like pine nuts?

Monday, July 20, 2020

Easy Pill Taking

If you've got to take meds, it might as well be a pleasant experience.
We thought it was kind of funny when Carolyn's three other pills (two gel pills, one pink pill) stuck to her chewy chocolate calcium pill.
I told her that if she ate them all at once, they'd probably all taste like chocolate.
She didn't try it.
Do you take meds? Do you like them?