Saturday, March 21, 2015


WARNING:  I curse, I tell it like I see it.  You don't have to agree, I'm not writing from your point of view I'm speaking from mine.  If you are easily offended, turn back now.  I reserve the right to delete comments that I find to be mean spirited or vulgar.  Double standard?  Probably.  To bad.  Get your own blog.

                                        *** you're up to speed on my life and we're to the part where I've made my resolution to live more and live bigger in 2015 and that starts with getting a social life.  I've taken a HUGE STEP (for me) and joined a dating site.  I had met my late husband thru eHarmony some 10 years ago, so I thought that would be the logical first step...that ended up being a total bust (more on that another time).

After a few weeks of eHarmony, at the urging of a female friend I tried a different site that promised to cater to persons in my age group.  Yeah, that's right...I have an AARP card and I'm not afraid to use it so I did it...I joined.

I've had mixed results.  Mixed meaning half of them have been fruitcakes and the other half have no idea how to treat a lady (EGADS I miss Southern Gentlemen) and sprinkled in-between those halves have been a handful of good men (more on them at a later date).

I suppose other people have had a similar experience on these dating sites, there was a huge flurry of activities during the first few weeks that resulted in several casual coffee house dates, even a few quiet luncheons.  I promise to regale you with stories of these individuals soon...but for today the sole purpose of this post is to just vent....

Things I wish men my age knew about dating a lady-ish, lady-lite....err....misplaced lady.


What I wish they understood about me.  Who knows maybe it will ring true with other women?

YOUR SCREEN NAMES SAY WHAT:  Are you really serious about finding a serious relationship/marriage or are you just looking for casual sex?  If the latter is the case then the screen name WillEatYouOutForFree is fine.  No, seriously, a guy with that screen name contacted me.  What the fuck?  Anyway, your screen name is a refection of who you are and/or what you want. Choose accordingly.

FIRST CONTACT: I am an independent, modern woman of legal age but I like it when you send the first ice breaker online NOT one of those one-click-flirts-because-I'm-too-busy-with-all-the-women-beating-down-my-door-to-write-you-personally-little pre-fab buttons you see next to my face online, but a real message.  Even if it's just a few words.  Read my profile, I agonized over it and rewrote it a couple...err...couple dozen times trying to find the right blend of Monica-esque breezy and sincere patter all the while trying not to be one of those give milk away for free kind of profiles, so actually read it make a reference to something, anything I've written.  Be daring, live life on the edge, ask me a real question.

SECOND/THIRD/FOURTH CONTACT: A long serious of different pre-fabricated flirt buttons?  If you don't have time to write a sentence then you don't have time for me.  Those thing just make me click delete and shout NEXT!  Sometimes it startles the dogs.

CONTENT:  If your first message to me contains the phrase "great melons" I'm gonna delete, block your ass and shriek NEXT!  Know when else I'm going to delete/block your ass?  When you send a picture of your penis next to a Lysol can for scale.  True story. Really happened.  And all the people said AMEN, and I yelled NEXT and startled the dogs.  Again.

KEEP MY SAFETY AS YOUR CHIEF CONCERN:  When you do this, you're protecting yourself as well.  When we first start chatting online, asking for my phone number to "text" isn't cool.  I don't know you, yet.  Call me by my screename and don't ask for my "real name" in a first message. want my checking account number while we're at it too?  Sure.  Right.  Don't volunteer too much information up front.  It's a delicate balance, being transparent and being safe.

KOFFEE KLATCH: For a first meeting, keep it simple and short.  Coffee or brunch are always welcome.  These types of dates have a fairly easy end time.  If we're chatting up a storm and it's easy and fun it can be extended into an early dinner.  If things are not feeling easy and fun then say something really witty're afraid to drive after dark and I'll nod knowingly because every time I hear myself say that I die a little inside.  Aging ain't for sissies.

I CAN'T BELIEVE I HAVE TO SAY THIS:  Take a shower, wash your hair, put a little vanilla extract behind your ears.  Hey, it worked for Granny.  But seriously, take a little pride in your appearance.  I don't think most women in my age group (50-100) are looking for a guy that looks like he just walked out of GQ (leave that to the yung'ens) but seriously dude, you're making a first impression here, brush your teeth, don't make me scream NEXT!  Good basic grooming, a little Dapper Dan and some Old Spice and you're good to go. Consider ditching the comb over.   Embrace exactly who you are, where you are and make the best of what'cha got. Trust me, I'm doing my damnedest to do the same.

DITCH THE BAGGY JEANS:  See above.  Get someone to help you if you need it, your kids maybe? Hell, your grandkids?  Mine just helped me pick out a blue and green dress. But again, not looking for a fashion model, but someone that takes pride in their appearance and is neat and clean goes a long way.  Droopy drawers do not. Droopy drawers are unsexy.

TRY TO RELAX AND BE CONFIDENT:  You've asked, I've said yes, it's just coffee, no need to stress.  Now look, many of us are really out of practice with the dating world.  Life is a whole lot different than when we made plans to go to pizza after the big game on Friday night while passing notes back and forth in English class (Hey there Mr. Hough, please don't grade my grammar?) and this is perhaps the best reason to keep things very simple for a first date once we're half centurions.  When you are relaxed and confident you exude this and it makes me feel more comfortable around you.  If you are on a date with me, trust me, I'm struggling with all the same insecurities.

SAVE THE WAR STORIES:  First, and even second or third dates are great for talking about the ancient past (childhood, school years) or the future (I'm so ready to retire to a warmer's  cold in Iowa under the damned Polar Vortex 5 months out of the freakin' year)....and even talking about the here and now.  Where are you today?  What are you looking for today?  But save the war stories for when we know each other better.  I don't want to hear about your crazy ex that slashed your tires, or the details of your non-existent sex life when you were married.  As a widow myself I find many widowers try to date too soon and first dates are consumed by the details of their wives illness and death.  Will I want to hear about this some day? Damn-skippy.  Do I want to spend my first 2 hour meeting with you mired in grief?  Not really.  Keep it light, keep it upbeat.

BE CAREFUL WHAT YOU ASK:  I will show you pictures of my dogs on my phone, don't temp me and no it's doesn't make me crazy dog lady.  But seriously, read your audience.  I will let you know if your questions are too personal, and if I say I'm not comfortable talking about something yet it's not because I am some serial killer, it's because I also need to keep myself safe.  Gee you seem nice, but so did Ted Bundy to his neighbors.

CHIVALRY AIN'T DEAD MISTER:  I am at the heart of all things a feminist.  I am also a lady-ish.  Raised in a time and in a home where we did things like went to Finishing Class while the boys were in Sunday School because it's far more important to act like a lady than  be educated (oh, can't you hear the sneer in my voice?).  What this means is that I notice the small touches of Gentlemanly manners that make me miss Southern Gentlemen.  Woefully few men I've met seem to have any idea what it means to be gentlemanly.  There may very well have been a woman that you met somewhere along the way has been offended when you acted like a gentleman.  I am not that lady.  Open my door, don't burp in the restaurant and for the love of all that is good and holy in this world do NOT pass gas and then laugh.  Yep, it happened. Say it with me....NEXT!

oops, we scared the dogs again.

Need a refresher course on Chivalry in the 21st Century?

Try this guy:

He's young, he's hip and he gives me hope for the future.

Yonta Mellons.

Monday, March 16, 2015

January 2015

For the 2nd year in a row I've had 
New Year's Eve, and New Year's Day
all to myself.

Don't be sad, I'm not. 

(ok, maybe I was a little but I made the best of it)

I baked bread... the year would have sustenance.

I made Black Eyed Peas
(Hoppin' John)...

...for prosperity and flavor in the coming year.
(and because damn, they are good)

I lit a candle and burned it all day... the year would be illuminated.

I wore red panties..
(a Turkish tradition I'm told)


... for luck in the new year

(you didn't really think I'd put a pic of that up did you?)

So good...I've had a pretty good year so far!

What traditions do you have?


What's Hoppin' John you ask?  It's a dish made traditionally with black eye'd peas and a ham hock.  As you can see this far up north, and in the tiny town of Mt Vernon, a ham hock wasn't available to me so I used a ham steak.  If you'd like the recipe I wish I could share some family recipe that's been handed down for generations and cooked in a 100-year old cast iron dutch oven....

But I can't...

'cause I use Pioneer Woman's recipe, here's a link...

If you haven't discovered her blog I highly recommend it.  It's funny, and sweet and full of love.

And she's a much better photographer than I am...

...I just leave out the celery and swap chipolte for the cayenne, but I did cook it in my red Le Cruiset that I won from Pioneer Woman herself.  It's one of my most prized possessions~!

Friday, March 13, 2015

Then ... The Next Six Months

I think we should just condense 2014 down to one post, because to tell you the truth it was long and tedious and I had hemorrhoids for part of it and let's face it, that is just not good story telling.

In the months leading up the party I was a busy little hobbit!  Nothing like inviting friends to stay at your house to light a fire under your ass!

First there were some chairs.....

...and a table....

...that were in desperate need of upgrades

(I am aware this seat is on crooked, I swear I'll fix it this year)

why yes, I need three mirrors and a flood light to put on my
makeup, why do you ask?

I admit, I really liked the way the faux gilding turned out

The the party came and went....

....there is always the joy of my life,
my granddaughter to do things
like plant fairy gardens...

and decorate pillowcases

and eat cookies with steamed milk
at the coffee shop

And the summer marched on...and the corn grew...

...and the soy beans were dark and lush

...there were pets to take care of...

(I've said it before and I'll say it again, if I had known at age 15 
my true soul mate was a chihuahua it would
have saved me many a'heartache)


This was my first year in the CSA and I had so many vegetables!!!

so many... so so  many 

so some had to be processed into Summer Dice and saved for winter

there were so many farm fresh organic vegis that even Cujo
got in on it...

(he adores broccoli, brussel sprouts and asparagus)

And a juicer to use...(that didn't go so well)

There were naps to be had...

and I really ticked off the postal dude

Before long, harvest time came...

And we made icicle pickles

There was even a very cold trick or treat trip to Lisbon

(you can't see how cold my nose was.....)

And before long the first snow fell...fluffy and light

and it was time to get the house ready for the long dark winter.

Soon it was Magical Night and the whole town 

~~~Decked the Halls~~~

my new flocked tree sported mercury ornaments  and crystal drops

the office window was lush with pretties

and we sadly had to say good-bye to Bessie, the world's oldest and most
loyal of copiers.

the we finished the year with a family dinner

and gifts for everyone

Somewhere along the line....

I cut off all my hair...

and got happy

and got my A1c down from 7.1 to 6.1 in one year
oh and...
 RowdyPants wore a doily hat

So there you have it....the last half of 2014.  
It took me that long to get 
my courage up far enough
 and my sugar down low enough
and then to accept I no longer look like this

to move on to the next phase of my Half Century Plan


((( cue dramatic music )))