SoCS: throwing in the towel

Your prompt for #JusJoJan the 28th and Stream of Consciousness Saturday is: “throw in the towel.” Use the phrase “throw in the towel” somewhere in your post.

Am I sensing a theme here? Could it be SAD? I know its been underlaying feeling in my efforts to keep my head above water. After weeks of gloomy weather we got another dumping of snow. At first I was happy we were getting snow because I will take sun and snow over wet gloom any day. I was looking forward to getting outside, get some fresh air and shoveling.

One push of the shovel dampened my enthusiasm in a hurry. It was about 10″ deep, wet and heavy. I couldn’t even push it off the deck, I had to start at the bottom and work my way up. The sidewalk up to the house was difficult so by the time I got to my driveway I knew I had to throw in the towel. Admit defeat.

Fortunately there is a man down the road who has a snow blower and actually likes to help. He won’t take money or cannabis. He has to load the thing onto his truck, drive it down and he does a great job. I appreciate him so much. I don’t hear “Do you need any help?” very often as in almost never. There are no young guys plowing driveways anymore. There are companies that want a seasonal contract.

He couldn’t come until the next day but I was OK with that. He came in the morning. . . I saw a big cloud of snow coming down the driveway and when he got down here he had a cigarette hanging out of his mouth. LOL! I don’t see how it could have been lit.

I still had to dig out my car, shovel out my 3-point turn and back my car into my parking spot. While shoveling the handle broke off. I Macgyvered it with duct tape and did not throw in the towel. My car was parked to the side of the driveway because I had a professional tree trimmer in the day before. That way he could back his truck and trailer right into my back yard.

That’s a Segway to telling you about the tree trimer. And I have photos! I have this beautiful Butternut tree. I know its a Butternut because my ex husband gave it to the guy who built this place; my niece’s husband. Besides our beekeeping/ honey business we also sold nut trees.

Thirty years later and now I own this place and the Butternut tree. I have watched it shade out my garden earlier and earlier and now its about 2:00 in the aft. Well, not now. I decided to hire a professional tree trimmer. I almost choked when he told me how much it would cost but I really want that garden back. Its a major part of my mental health! I had the money in my savings so I did it. I’m happy and excited about my garden again.

There’s a photo below the SOCS cover. Of course it was dark and dreary. The guy in the photo up in the tree is taking that whole trunk out, piece by piece, firewood size. They took a trailer load of slash away. I really understand why it costs so much when you see what they do!

Last night we got more snow but not much and it looks light. This place is a lot of work for a 70 yr old but I’m not throwing the towel yet.

SoCS: high

Your Friday prompt for Stream of Consciousness Saturday is “contains ‘igh.’” Find a word that contains the letters “igh” in that order and use it in your post. 

I almost forgot it was Saturday: not because I was high although getting high happened to be on my mind this morning.

I’m making no confessions but I do not like to be without cannabis and something happened that I ran low. My neighbour, I often complain about how lazy he is, did a job for me! We had huge storm and a big limb broke off my butternut tree landing on my garden fence. I’ll put the photo at the end.

I posted the photo on Facebook (everyone was posting their downed limb photos) and he came over offering to cut it up with his chain saw! Big surprise!

So what’s this got to do with getting high? Something we have in common is that we both like to get high so I gave him a couple of nice buds for the job. Now its Saturday and I realize I might not have enough for the rest of the weekend. Since I buy it at the Rez, I have to go to town first to get cash because I won’t pay $3 at an ATM. Town is in the opposite direction of the pot shop. Do I go today or tomorrow or eek it out until Monday? Decisions, decisions.

And that is why ‘high’ was the first thing that came into my mind when I saw ‘igh’.

The Friday Reminder and Prompt for #SoCS July 3, 2021 | (

Rarely Bored

Yawn. What Bores You?”  This was yesterday’s prompt but I left the computer early yesterday and like this better than todays: “What’s the longest time you’ve ever been away from your favourite person”   Ha!

I rarely ever get bored but I did yell out “This is boring!” trying to watch a movie called “A Most Wanted Man”. I kept running it back because I wasn’t paying attention to the dialogue then realized, it’s not me….. this is boring.

That happened again when I was watching Billions. Every time they started talking about stocks and numbers my mind would go elsewhere. But  I stuck with it because I like Paul Giamatti.  I found you don’t really have to pay attention to the numbers so it’s OK, the story line looks good.

Chit Chat bores the hell out of me. I don’t like small talk or chatting on the phone. (At least on the phone I can roll my eyes.) The answering machine gets anything important. Texting is so much better than talking. Say what you’ve got to say and no more than necessary, please.

I have a part-time job and with it being January I’m only getting 2 or 3 shifts a week but that’s perfect. I always have things to do here; things I have to do and things I want to do.  I do housework for a couple of hours then relax and/or walk (if I’m not working of course) in the afternoon.

My ex-husband used to say “You sure can entertain yourself”.  So true! My mom used to say, “Learn to enjoy your own company”.   Hmmm. May be some mixed messages there but it still worked out well for me.  I live alone and enjoy doing whatever I want… within my work schedule and budget.

I maintain and add to my landscaping in the spring and summer. In the Fall I put away firewood that I have delivered in September. January to March I work on jigsaw puzzles to get the afternoon sun as it comes back up. Getting that sun is crucial to mental health, I’m taking Vit. D now and trying to catch any afternoon rays which have been few and weak.

Today is sunny and I’m working 3:00 to 9:00. I’ll do some vacuuming (now that I can see how bad it is), tidy up, bring in firewood and maybe do a few pieces of the puzzle before going into work.

Tomorrow is going to be sunny and I’m not working. Oh, boy! Walk on the trail behind my house, work on the puzzle in the afternoon…… ah, life is good.

its all in the organization
its all in the organization

I’m Done!

Aahhh! That’s the sound of me breathing easy. I’m done. The long run of night shifts and busy days is over.

We had our family Christmas on Monday.  It was wonderful, warm and happy……  because there are kids!  Without them we’d be looking at each other,  trying to think of things to talk about.

Yesterday my ex visited me, I hadn’t seen him in a year. He talked a blue streak about the business that used to be mine, too, and going to places in the USA that I liked to go to.  Then he gave me some money and a hug and said he would visit in the summer and clean my chimney. It was stressful but I’m glad I’m not still with him.

I went into work at 5:00 praying I wouldn’t be met with a list of work to do but, lo and behold! My boss had everything done and told me I don’t have to work Christmas Eve Day! Business has been slow, (I think because the weather is so warm with no snow, it’s not ‘Christmassy’) we are well stocked up and the students are working.   I did a happy dance right there!

AND he hugged me, Merry Christmas, before he left!  That was very surprising! I went in so tired but joy got me through the evening.

I did some shopping on my break so I won’t have to go to any more stores until after the 25th.  People get into such a frenzy, its crazy.  Relax, people,  it’s only a day, not the end of time, for Pete’s sake!

The weather is still warm, it does look bleak and snow would be prettier….. but I don’t care! No scary drives to work. When I get the wood stove going I can open the kitchen window. Today it’s raining; perfect weather for a Netflix day.

The person I’ve been helping out hasn’t called for a few days so I’m keeping my fingers crossed she has found another helper but I’m not going to call to find out.

Tomorrow is going to be 10 C and sunny; I might just go for a walk on the beach!

Aaaaahhhhhh!  I hear the chorus…… Hallaalleeeelluuuujaaaah!





SoCS; miss


I miss Laura L. There is a group of bloggers out there that followed WTFAIOA by Laura L. through her trials and tribulations. When I first came upon her blog she was living in a trailer in Kentucky then moved to a basement of a person she didn’t know to look for a job in Vermont. We were all so happy when she got a job then an apartment but soon it all turned bad. Recently she wrote her last post with “my life has gotten so much worse. I’m closing the blog”

What happened? Where is she? I worry about her! Are you reading  this Laura- I know that’s not your name? We miss you!

How many Lauras are out there leading lives of quiet desperation?

I have a friend down the road who is living  in a trailer with no plumbing. She left her abusive mate and was offered the place by friends who own the trailer park. They’ve been grumbling about her water use and daily shower from their house so she’s been coming here for a shower and fill a water container every couple of days to buffer her water usage there.

Yesterday she left me fifty cents.

She has a very old dog; a boxer. He drools a lot and wants to get on my couch. She cooks him dinner, which is the main reason I don’t want her to stay here, plus she smokes cigarettes.  Don’t worry; she doesn’t want to stay here either.  They needs her own space.

I remember how crazy I was when my marriage broke up and I had no place, no job, no life.  The fear, anxiety and grief are debilitating.

It’s too bad other people’s misfortunes are the best reminders that our lives are good. I don’t feel so bad about going into work tonight, tomorrow and Monday. Of course there are moments of anxiety and the little inner groan of ‘I don’t wanna go to work’ but all in all, I’m lucky to have this job and home and the health to keep it all together.

And I live in peace.

My heart goes out to all the people who struggle this holiday season. When you see them, smile at them, show them they matter. That can mean so much to a person who is down and hurt.



I’m finished in more ways than one.  I finished my walkway last Monday;


Its not exactly like the template because I found one of the ‘permanent’ slabs had a little shaved off the side so they wouldn’t fit together right. I had to drag the shaved one to the outside and move some around.  The whole ones are extremely heavy; I had to ‘walk’ them into place.

It looks rough now but it will get ‘grown in’. I’m going to plant Hens ‘n Chickens in those cut out spots. That area gets baked in the sun in the afternoons so they will thrive and fill in the harsh angles. Creeping Thyme is already planted near the front step so that will grow over the corner. I’m not a fan of ninety degree angles; it’s so unnatural.


I’m just posting this today because I had to work three days in a row!  Yeah, you can scoff and snort, younger people, but three days of getting up and going to work, working as fast as I can for 5 hours (yeah, five hours, OK, but I’m almost 63) with one 15 minute break, irritating music, harsh lighting and a grouchy boss is damned exhausting at this age.

My boss, who is famous for being grouchy and mean, was in an extra bad mood because so many things had gone wrong when he took the weekend off. One thing affected my job.

We used to get our cakes in a huge slab ( I’ll have to do a special post of all the slabs in my life) approximately 24″ X 18″, that’s two feet wide and possibly two or three inches high…. at best. We had to slice them in half, length wise, and fill them with icing. This is quite the skill to be mastered. There are a lot of fat tops and skinny bottoms before you get it right.

Back in the winter we switched to pre-filled triple layer cakes in smaller sizes. They are wonderful. They come in the larger size birthday cake so all we have to do it is plop it on a board and ice it. For the smaller cakes, we just cut in in half or quarters.  For special large orders….. stick two together. It saved us so much time, work and mess.

But last week the assistant manager did the ordering and ordered us the old cakes. Not only did I have to cut and fill slabs again, they had to be triple layer and cut differently to match the new sizes. All the time my boss is glaring and rolling his eyes because I’m not fast enough.

Any question I have to ask him, (oh, I do dread having to ask him something) he answers with something snarky implying how stupid you are….. not just me…. customers, too! It actually doesn’t bother me much anymore; I almost find him entertaining. There’s no way he’s going to fire me, I know too much!

Here’s a fun example: this happened yesterday. A woman came in and said she special ordered Savoury Turkey stuffing. We have bags and bags of stuffing bread cut into pieces , waiting in racks for Thanksgiving. We make tons of it with our stale bread. We slice the bread, then turn the slices on their sides and slice it into pieces, then they’re baked lightly on sheets and bagged up.

I’m looking around for the order and don’t see it. My boss is filling the commercial bread shelves when I ask him about the order. “It’s sitting right out on the counter” he says as if I’m blind and stupid. I look and only see sliced bread, I look all around again.  I sigh a sigh of dread and go back to him, “I can’t find it”   He’s so pissed off as he points to it and says, “Read the label!”  The sliced bread has a label reading “Savoury Turkey Stuffing”     Oh, silly me, I was looking for stuffing, like the three racks of stuffing waiting in our wings.

My customer is listening, wide eyed at his tone,  I start to put the six loaves in her cart just as my boss was walking by, “oh” she says, “I thought it would be cut into pieces.”

“You have to cut it up yourself” he says so rudely, I couldn’t help it, I had to laugh.

“Phew!” she says, “Is he always that way?”

“No, you should see him when he’s in a bad mood!” I said and laughed.

She shook her head and said, “I sure couldn’t work here.”

That actually buoyed me up for the rest of the day. I needed a lift…..

The day before I went to visit my aging aunt in the nursing home after work. I got home only a short time before Zumba but I decided to go even though I was tired: I need it for my mental health.

Yesterday, Thursday, I was so tired. When I got home I laid down, just to close my eyes for a bit, and slept for two hours. I woke up at 6:45 p.m., very hungry.

Today I am off. My place is a mess, my lawn needs mowing and my aunt needs new nightgowns. Good thing I have two days off…..

I’m finished.

The Walkway Project

There are some good things about living alone and doing whatever you choose. I can get lost in a whim and have no one to say, “What the hell are you doing?”

I was given a bunch of concrete slabs, two feet by two feet, for a walk way in front of my house. The old ones were used in my wood shed and I never replaced them. Grass and weeds had grown into the gravel: it was wet and dewey in the morning, hard to shovel in the winter. A few weeks ago a pile of older, thick concrete slabs appeared at my neighbours. I asked if he was going to use them and he said he would give me what was left over. On Wednesday evening he brought and put down these;

006This is what has been on my mind for a few days now. I know I can shuffle these around, and make something more pleasing. There are enough broken pieces and it goes too far into my driveway this way.

I had to work Friday night but I got two pieces started by my step in the morning. I sat on a stool, dug the grass and weeds out from the gravel with hand tools and added two halves to get right width.  I want to encourage the Creeping Thyme room to grow over the sharp corners. Two broken pieces helped to make the step-down a little better.


Yesterday I went to my sister’s birthday party and had a great time with the kids and family but I really wanted to work on this. The weather is perfect and I have 3 days off. One problem is that that they are very heavy, of course, so it’s hard to shuffle them around to see which way they fit together best.

When I got home I decided to make a template of them all and put it together like a puzzle. I cut out squares of paper 11 cm by 11 cm then stood out over every slab and cut out it’s shape or split. I numbered the slabs with a piece of soap and numbered the little pieces of paper. Then I got an empty pop can box and cut out one side to make the bottom template. I counted 5 slabs but the box wasn’t 55 cm long so I cut out another piece and taped it on. I went outside and realized I actually had 6 slabs permanently so I cut out another piece and added it on. I marked off 11 cm. increments and worked on placing the shapes together.

See? Now here is where another person would question my sanity and how much time was going into this. My point is; who cares?  This is what I want to do and I have the time and inclination to do it.


What’s even funnier, (well, to me) is that I’m not doing it….. I’m writing about doing it. I have other, more pressing jobs to do than this but I really want to move pieces of concrete……  just #8 and #2 for today.

I mowed my very long lawn as my lawn mower had been in repair for over a month. Now I have to rake bales of long grass before it rains and gets too heavy.

Damn, this is where that other sane person would come in real handy.

Sometimes I Remember

When we have problems, over-worked, poor health, lack of love, the usual things that keep us from happiness, we wonder why we have to live through this when others seem to have it so good. They aren’t better people or have worked any harder…… they just have it way better.

Sometimes at work I feel so bad for myself: that I’m working so hard at this age, for minimum wage, and tolerating being spoken down to. At night, with a big mop and bucket, I could sit down and cry. This certainly wasn’t how I planned on living my later years.

Then I see the homeless, the handicapped, those unable to work or have a home for whatever reason, scorned and treated like garbage.

The range of ‘bad’ to ‘good’ is so vast, I’m just treading mediocrity. At least I have a job, a home and pretty good health for 62.

Today I have the grace, space and time to contemplate life as I do dishes, (no dishwasher) and I remembered something, it hits me every once in a while when I have to space to think, this IS why we are here.  These troubles, this discomfort is exactly why we are struggling to survive on this Earth.

We, as souls, wanted to come here to feel; loving, crying, eating, being a part of nature, the terrible beauty that this planet is. To experience all this is an awesome task.

In the book of Sophia, from the Dead Sea Scrolls, it says angels bow before humans because we are souls that come down to the dregs and make it out again.

I wonder how my life turned out this way but it doesn’t matter. It DID turn out this way. And for whatever reason, I’m meant to live here alone then go into work and deal with unpleasant people. It’s HOW I deal with it that matters.  These people are meant to know me, too, for whatever reason. The way I treat them in return is so important; it can impact both our lives.

We could let days pass by worrying about things that will never happen, wishing our lives to be so different and miss the reason for our being here and experiencing this.

It’s not easy and it’s not always fair. (It just seems unfair because we can’t see the bigger picture.) We think we are leading this mundane, stupid life and can’t see the miracle that it is, right here, right now.

After we die and see “WHY” we will slap ourselves on our foreheads for not seeing the trees in our forest. Except we won’t have a forehead or hands……. but we will want them again…… and want to try to get it right this time.

Cakes, cakes and more cakes

desserts stressed

I wasn’t going to write this post; it’s already 9:18 and I don’t want to get tied to my computer on such a beautiful day. I slept in until 7:45 which is great because I worked all weekend.

Summer has begun in Grand Bend: a beach tourist town, for those who don’t live around here. We made up as many cakes as our trays would hold in preparation for a busy weekend but those only lasted a few hours. The main cake decorator was swamped with orders for the weekend she valiantly tried to finish on Friday but apparently ran out screaming at 6:30.

I came in at 8:00 Saturday morning and my boss was finishing off the orders: he was not in a good mood. I started preparing and icing them and he would decorate. (he’s very fast). Meanwhile all of our regular cakes, Snickers, Chocolate Fudge, etc., were flying off the shelves. I started on those. We were constantly being interrupted by customers wanting bread sliced or “would we write on this cake?”  I was supposed to work until 1:00: I stayed until 3:30.

I was on cakes alone Sunday, Father’s Day. There were cakes we were completely out of again and no birthday cakes out. People wanted pastries from the chilled display and some of them needed to be baked or filled. That was all between the birthday/Father’s day cakes going as fast as I could make them up. As I went out with a vanilla the chocolate would be taken away.  I’d just get back to my other cakes when someone would come with the cake I just put out. (Each one requires roses, leaves and sprinkles then packaged with candles taped on and the labeled.)

“Could you write ‘Happy Father’s Day Mike, Mel, and John’ on this small cake?”

“Could you get Happy Fathers Day ___ and Happy Birthday ____ on here?”

“Sure I can!”

After a few hours I had to write down the name because I had so many in my head. By the time I opened the plastic container it comes in and wrote ‘Happy whatever…‘, I would forget the name!

cake 1cake 2

It started to die down by 2:00 and I got 3 trays of bar cakes done. I started to lose my mind about 4:00. I was so tired I would go into the freezer or cooler and forget what I needed. If someone was even looking in the direction of the birthday cakes I would turn away and pretend I didn’t see them. They would have to interrupt me: “Excuse me, could you write something on this cake?”


When I got home I stripped down in the laundry room and went straight into the shower. My arms and face were sticky. How did I get icing on top my hat?

But today I’m satisfied I did a good job and got some good hours in for my next pay cheque. All I have to do is mow my lawn and its a beautiful day. (and I have a rider mower)

And I can say TGIM!  (Thank God its Monday!)


“Fairy Tales Can Come True…

It can happen to you when you’re Young At Heart”

Today’s Prompt is; And they lived happily ever after.” Think about this line for a few minutes. Are you living happily ever after? If not, what will it take for you to get there?

Come on. Fairy Tales end in “……happily ever after” when they get married. Yeah….. that was the big goal in the olden days: get married. Look good, be witty but compliant and you’ll get a good husband. And live happily ever after.


I got married and stay married for 28 years before I finally realized I couldn’t be happy with him (happiness was not allowed) and had to make a go of ‘being happy’ on my own. I am happier than I was but I could use a lot more happiness in my life.

Love makes people happy…. let’s face it. When it comes down to it that’s what we all want: Love.

It doesn’t have to be Prince Charming: it can be family or friends or an altruistic endeavor for humanity. It can be a deep spiritual love although, with that, some human companionship is missed. Even people who find a great love in God or Jesus wish they had another person to share that love with.

I have love of family. Yesterday I was at the beach with my sister, niece, nephew and their kids. I felt very loved and happy to be a part of them. It was my grandniece’s 7th birthday and she wanted to go the beach so they took her and her sister out of school and came to Grand Bend. My niece and her 2 1/2 year-old came, too. It raised my spirits from around my ankles up to my head. I’m so lucky to have them.

(I had an 8:00 to 1:00 shift in the bakery.  They all met at 1:30 just down the road from where I work. With all the Mercury in retrograde crap that’s going down  I can’t believe I got the right shift for it!)

At 62 years old I don’t expect to live happily ever after. Life just isn’t like that…. ever…… to anyone.

I still would really like to meet Prince Charming: I’m young at heart.  Someone who thinks I’m just wonderful and wants to make me happy by doing home renovations and taking me to restaurants.

But until I meet someone with those qualifications; I can be happy enough by myself.


In response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt: “Happily Ever After.”