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ANINOIDS The Book

ANINOIDS a sci-fantasy book that your teen and you won’t want to put down. It’s a awesome read that’s full of action and twist and turns. ANINOIDS is in the Amazon Kindle Store or use this link http://www.amazon.com/dp/B08K3L3T9V. Leave a review and DM me for a free gift.

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ANINOIDS is now for sale in Amazon Kindle. Pickup the book and go to Aninoids.com to see how you can get Reptile for free.

Aninoid
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Online Learning A Good Judge for College

Online learning isn’t easy and it’s not for everybody, but since we are being thrust into online learning, it is a good opportunity to see how your young person would do in college. I’m not talking about the actual classes because most classes are in a classroom, but how your kid goes about his/her college experience. When you go to college, there’s independence and what goes with that is self-motivation. If, during this time of forced online learning, you have to get your kid, or they’re playing video games, then what do you think will happen when you can’t barge into their room to remind them that this is school time? What about the kid that’s sneaking playing video games with their phone under the table? Is he/she going to be motivated to put that controller down when you’re nowhere around? Do you find yourself going into his/her room and finding your kid staring off into space, not looking at the computer screen? Do you think that won’t happen in college? And don’t sleep on the kid staying in the bathroom, probably using his/her phone. Kids are creative and very few are excited about school, even when college is on the line.
Parents don’t look at this in such a negative way because this may be your first look into how motivated your kid will be on his/her own. I am writing this blog because my grandson is in the 11th grade. I asked my daughter this morning how he was doing. She said that he has to be pushed; he’s a daydreamer. So, I said to her, “This is a good judge of how he will do in college.” Though he’s not going to college next year, she can now try to do something about his bad habits. We are not rich and can’t afford to send him to school to play video games or daydream through college or to pay anyone at a college to falsify his academics. He wants to be a chef, so I’m like, “Give him some recipes and let him cook!” Parents: You have to be proactive in this lockdown learning environment. Kids look at college as a way to get away from the rules and parental interference, but the actual work and focus can be a different thought. You have to go back to your 11th and 12th year in school and how you felt about school to relate to a kid today.
I personally want to see my grandson go to a trade school because his grades won’t get him a scholarship. I only can see him going to community college and letting him see if college is really for him. My daughter could just ignore the signs she sees now and go into debt to see the writing on the wall. Don’t ignore this chance to see what your kid will be like in college, if you can take this time to duplicate the college learning experience as much as you can. This opportunity may not (we hope) come around again. If you are like my daughter, start trying to emphasize the importance of college now. Let your kid know college is x amount of dollars and after bills I have x left. Let your kid know college is not party time 7 days a week. The good thing is that my family has one more year to reach him, but from what I see now, a trade school is his best bet to make a decent living in this work. I hope this blog will help some parents realize that this situation of online school is not a bad thing at all.

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Covid-19 Parents Be Smart

BE SMART -PROTECT YOUR FAMILY

We are tired of staying inside, but as the saying goes, better safe than sorry. This virus shows no mercy to anybody, and it has disrupted life as we know it. The death numbers mount on a daily basis (I’m not putting any here because as I’m writing this, someone probably has died), and now they are talking about opening the cities when the one safe way to protect ourselves and family is by staying home. I was most disturbed about seeing people protesting to go back to work. If these people had been touched by this deadly virus, I can’t believe they would be so quick to protest. It is especially disturbing when we have a person in the White House that seems to care more about money and stock market than our lives (Yes, I do have money in the stock market and lost some). You can replace objects but not one life can you replace if, when opening the city, this virus continues to rage.
 People are losing their jobs at an alarming rate, but again, if you lose your life, where will your children be then? Or if you lose a child, how will that feel? I saw on television a parent said, “What shall I tell my child when he/she asks what’s for dinner?” We are parents. We have to make sacrifices and be creative. No, they maybe can’t eat steak or chicken, but what about a huge pot of chili or beef stew? Hell, any one pot meal … get a restaurant-sized pot and freeze some. We are spoiled. We as adults can be creative but, until now, we haven’t had to be. This can also be a teaching lesson for our children about money and saving. There’s an App called Acorns that takes your change from when you buy something and invest it. You won’t miss that 20 change from the dollar you spend. It all adds up. Our children take money for granted … $200 sneakers? And as parents, we go into debt to buy them. You have to take this time to teach them about the sacrifices that go into buying those sneakers. Parents take that little bit of money and stretch it. Just as the children learn about money, so are you. 
If you want to work that bad, Amazon, Dominoes, and Fidelity are hiring. I know some people will make more money not looking for a job with the amount of unemployment. 

COVID-19 Parents Be Smart

Parents, you have to be smart. Even as the states decide to open, you have to think first, not just put yourself and family members out in your area. If you’re going to the movies, do you wear your virus-fighting gear or are you going to believe that the movies have wiped the seat down before you sit down? If you go to the playground, are you putting the virus-fighting gear on your children or are you going to take the chance that the park people have disinfected that slide between kids? Young adults are the last to understand that their lives are more important than going to the beach. I see no way of getting it through their brains than talking to them and keep talking to them about what could happen if they decide not to abide by the rules. Young adults think they are invincible, but as parents, you have to try to reach them by any means, even if it means scaring them with death numbers and what the possibility of if he/she brings the virus home. There are big consequences.

Parents, before you send your child to school or camp, what’s that going to look like? Do the adults interacting with your child have on virus-protecting gear or will your child have to go with their gear on? You have to know what protection’s will be in place. You want it written on paper, not just a verbal promise. You need to ask your child, “Did you see anybody wipe down the chair and tables before you used it? You can find out a lot from your child. You are putting your child’s and family’s lives in danger if you aren’t diligent in asking questions. It is bad enough you have to depend on someone else to do their part in having a safe and sanitary environment for your child, so it’s important for you to do your part.
I know people are having a hard time paying their rent, and this is the time for families to come together to help each other. No one should be a throwaway person. This could mean two families in one apartment. You may be cramped, but you are alive. Remember, nothing has to be permanent. It’s all a temporary situation. The one good thing this virus has done is bring families close together.
There’s no safe place like home until there is an actual way to fight this virus, so think before you act in all situations.

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Reach Out to The Thrown Away People

Reach Out To Someone


We are living in a time where unconditional love is needed. This is not the time to judge or hold animosity towards anyone. This virus has no boundaries of who it touches or why it touches that person. We all have someone in our family that we have mentally thrown away for whatever reason. The reason is not important right now. This should be a time for families and friends to come together to build a foundation that will help each of us to get through this fight. This is a fight of our lives that is happening, and it is evident by the numbers we see each day of the deaths that have taken place in such a short period of time. It’s time to reach out to that thrown away person and bring them back into the fold of family and love. Where is that person right now, do you know? I know it’s easy to dismiss that drug addict, prostitute, runaway, and anyone that doesn’t live up to the standards that society puts upon us. The throw away person might have hurt you or gave you lot of unfulfilled promises, but this is not the time to mentally pretend that person doesn’t exist. We are all worried when we hear of a family member or friend that has tested positive, but what about the family member that we don’t hear about? Will that person’s death not mean anything? Is it too hard to open your heart to that throw away and reach out to them? This virus doesn’t care about who you are or what you did, it only wants to ravish your body and kill. How can the person sleeping in an alley fight it, or what about the prostitute who sleeps with so many people? Anyone of them can carry it? These people need love and someone to care about them. They need not to be judged, but shown unconditional love. This is a time to open that mind that has been closed to that person and reach out to them. There is no such thing as “I’m tired of trying” because this virus isn’t tired of killing. You must make an effort to find and throw your arms around that person and let him/her know you got them, they aren’t alone. Nobody wants to die alone, and we see that with this virus. People are dying alone. Don’t let your thrown away person die alone. If you don’t want them in your house, then take them by the hand and lead them to get help or to any place that he/she will be safe. There are so many thrown away people out there and, normally, each of us just holds our packages a little closer to our body and walk a little quicker to distance ourselves from their presence. This is a time we should walk a little slower, and, maybe in that package, have a sandwich with a note to a place of safety. This is not a time to turn our backs on anybody. We are all human beings and should not be judged because we wouldn’t want anyone to judge anyone of us. It’s sad that, even in these times under these conditions, that so many of us still have no compassion for others. If you have a throw away person in your family (we all have at least one), reach out to them. You should never ever feel that you can’t try just one more time to reach someone. We should, especially in this time, look beyond ourselves and show some love. It doesn’t hurt, and it won’t kill you like this virus will.

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Human Medicine for Dogs

Mason

I have learned from having my dogs that there is quite a few human medicines that dogs can take. Vets very seldom tell you about these medicines unless you ask because their practice would get no monetary benefit if everyone started just giving their dogs medicine they may already have in the medicine cabinet. Medicine you buy from the vet is quite expensive. There are other places you can get medicine from online once you know the name and amount you can give a dog. I buy Heartguard and Frontline Plus from Petshed or Budget Pet Care; they are reasonable and I’ve never had a problem with either. You have to shop around online, because some places are more economical than others.

I have two dogs, GG who is 17 years old and Mason who is 12. GG and Mason both have allergies, so I give them about a ¼ tsp of Benadryl once a day. The Benadryl has to be children’s, without any flavor to it. It makes them drowsy just like it does to humans, so I try to wait until the evening so they can rest peacefully. I live in Florida now, so I’m going to give it to them twice a day. Benadryl does help with the itchiness they have and keeps me from saying, “Stop licking,” a hundred times a day.

I am a fanatic about making sure GG poops on a daily basis, and, while giving her pumpkin helps because it’s rich in fiber, it doesn’t always work. I checked online and found that dogs can take Metamucil. I spoke to the vet and got the okay for her to have ¼ tsp of Metamucil. I buy the granules that you mix with water. I use a little plastic spoon, put a ¼ on a tsp, mix it with water, and stir it with my finger. Here comes the hard part, getting her to take it. When I can’t get her to take it from the spoon I have to follow her around because, on occasion, I’ve found it in a corner of a room where she’s spit it out. I try to mix it with her food, but she puts the pieces of chicken that have the Metamucil on it, on the floor. Actually, she puts any pieces of food that she smells pumpkin or Metamucil on, on the floor. She’s not eating it. It’s hit and miss giving Metamucil to her. The best way I’ve found is to give her something she actually likes, such as hamburger or steak, then she does eat the medicine. It’s trying, but I know she needs to go just like we do, and as we get older we sometimes need a little help. Once she has pooped, I give her a break from taking either pumpkin or Metamucil as long as she has a poop that I feel is a good amount. I know I’m weird when it comes to her.

Mason is our problem child and that’s an understatement to describe him. He’s more like a child that wasn’t disciplined and just does what he wants. He’s a good dog when he wants to be. Otherwise, we are constantly calling his name all day for something and it’s not for anything good. A few months ago, he started being unable to sleep in the bedroom. GG sleeps at the foot of the bed, but Mason he has to sleep at the head of the bed on a pillow next to me. He started that when my spouse was in Afghanistan; I guess he felt he was the man of the house. Anyway, about four months ago he started just staring at the wall in the bedroom, then he’d get up and try to hit GG in the head, then he’d go in the living room and come back to the bedroom just back and forth until my spouse (I wasn’t getting up with him) would get up and go into the living room. They would lay on the couch and he’d fall fast asleep. That’s been four months and my spouse hasn’t been in our bed since. We can’t figure out what his problem is, it even happens if my spouse takes him in the guest room; he will not go to sleep. We took him to the vet and asked about Melatonin. He said he could have 1mg of unflavored Melatonin. It’s not the pet Melatonin, but the human version. He sleeps for about 15 minutes and then he starts, then my spouse is back to the living room. We thought maybe it’s shadows from the television, but he’s like this whether the television is off or on. We have decided that we are just going to have to buy an air mattress and we all sleep in the living room if we ever want to sleep together again. If anyone has any ideas, please send them my way. I would like to sleep with my spouse again in my lifetime.

Pets, just like children, have their quirks. Mason has more quirks than some adults, but we love him. My biggest headache with GG is picking her up and down on the bed. She thinks it’s a game that we have to play after she eats. They are both a handful, but I wouldn’t have it any other way.

GG
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The One That Got Away

A Love Lost

We’ve all had or will have that person that stole your heart. Your first love. The one that made you think every day was like that first day. The person that puts a smile on your face. That person that was your forever person. This was your heart and soul, but for whatever reason, the fairytale ended. One day, you’re sitting deep in thought, and you wonder, whatever happened to that person?
You decide to reach out to that person to see what direction his/her life has taken. You pick up the phone and hesitate with each number you hit.

Your heart answers, “Hello.”
You: “How you been?”
Your heart: “Okay, who’s this?
You: “I was thinking about you.”
Your heart: “Who’s this?”

The conversation is stalled. You aren’t sure how to proceed. It definitely wasn’t what you expected, but then again, what did you expect? 
You: “Nobody. I must have the wrong number.” 

You feel dejected, and your heart, did he/she really not know who you were? The answer is that the person probably knew who you were but just didn’t want to open that door again. The past is the past. You’ve both moved on. 

This is a phone call we’ve picked up the phone to make but then put the phone back down. What do you hope to gain? When you’re alone and lonely, it is tempting to get into your feelings and look for that person that made you giggle and climax to the highest mountain, with whom you shared dreams of the future. When you’re lonely, those thoughts hit you hard, and no matter what your mind tells you about going there, your heart overrules it. You just have to know about that person, hoping that maybe, just maybe, that person is sitting over there thinking the same thing. 

If you find yourself in this situation, do whatever you have to do to not make that call. Yes, there are times when a lost love can be found, but they are few. If you’re lonely, take a walk, call a friend, go visit your mother. Do whatever, but don’t make that call. You both moved on months or even years ago. You don’t know that person, and that person no longer knows you. You can’t continue from yesterday. What you’re thinking of only exists in a part of your heart that is locked away behind a closed door. Why open it? You would have to start a new relationship, brand new, like with people you’ve never met, but that’s not what you want. You want that relationship you remember, but it can’t come back; you can’t relive it. It is not possible to continue something that ended a long time ago. When you’re reminiscing about a lost love, you also have to remember what caused that wonderful, better-than-life relationship to end. It did end for a reason, and though that reason might not seem important in your loneliness, you have to listen to your mind when it tells you what really happened to your fairytale. A fairytale doesn’t just end for no reason. Be real with yourself.
If you do make that call, know that there is no guarantee that what you’re dreaming of will be the reality that you’re looking for. The loneliness you have may still be there, even after you make the call. The person might even resent you for trying to interfere in his/her life after so long. Why put yourself through that misery? It’s not worth it. Sometimes it’s better to take a dream and smile and go back to sleep than to pursue it. Loneliness is hard, but going back in time to cure it is not the answer either. Let it be. Time heals. Maybe not instantaneously, but it will heal. You just have to keep moving forward and keep that lost love behind the locked door in your heart.

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Being Lonely In A Relationship

The Look of Loneliness

There is nothing worst than being lonely in a relationship. This feeling could be gotten from any type of relationship. The relationship I’m speaking of is between opposite or same sex couples. Relationship loneliness is that knot you get in your stomach that makes you feel sick.

You could be in a room with all your friends but you know something is missing. You envy couples that seem so happy and you wonder why you can’t have that. You and your partner or spouse seem to always be missing each other; one is coming, the other is going. You and your partner or spouse seem to talk, but you aren’t really talking, it’s more like being cordial. You go out, but there’s nothing but silence between you. The intimacy is all but gone. The sex is robotic or maybe even non-existent.

If any of the sentences above are something you can relate to, then there is a problem that you just don’t want to address. No one wants to be alone, but it’s worse to be a alone when you’re not really alone. The fear of loneliness can keep you in a place where you shouldn’t be. That fear can paralyze you from moving on. You’re stagnant and don’t really understand why. What happens to you after the relationship is over is fearful to think of. It’s like a child going to school for the first time. You’re scared of the unknown. You try to imagine being alone, but you can’t. All you know is that one day you were happy and all of sudden you feel like you’re in a relationship by yourself. What happened?

Relationship loneliness doesn’t have to be about cheating. It can happen and neither of you have to see it coming. You both can be too scared to have a conversation about your feelings in fear that you’ll find out something neither of you are ready to admit. Cheating is something you can put words to but loneliness is much harder and deeper. You can try and describe it, but the words just don’t quite say what you’re feeling. You just can’t put your finger on what’s going on.

There is no quick fix for a relationship when you have that feeling. It takes time understand the feeling you have. You can’t get through it alone. You have to talk about it. I don’t mean to just communicate but you have to have a conversation. You both have to acknowledge your role in what is happening in your relationship. The cause as I said doesn’t have to be cheating, it could be work or family problems. It could be that you feel unfulfilled in the relationship or unappreciated. 
Whatever the reason, you have to first understand it yourself before you can hope someone else will; not just understand it, but also fix it. What you really want is someone to fix what you feel, but that’s never going to happen. You are responsible for your own happiness. Don’t put that job on someone else. 

The best answer I can give you is time. Take the time to work on yourself. Let your partner or spouse understand just that you need time. If your partner or spouse doesn’t seem interested in how you’re feeling or wanting to help see you through it, then maybe that’s the problem; that person doesn’t want to be in the relationship and is too afraid to tell you. You might find out that your partner or spouse is having the same feelings of loneliness but doesn’t know how to talk about it. You’ll never know unless you both have an honest conversation about it. That’s the person you love, so there shouldn’t be anything you can’t discuss. Push your pride out of the way. 
Don’t let pride ruin a relationship that doesn’t have to end but just needs some nourishment from the both of you. Does it matter who goes first or who approaches who first? No, it doesn’t matter when you’re trying to hold on to something that you feel is worth fighting for.

Blogs
If The Relationship Didn’t Work Once, Don’t Try Again
Diversity Brings With It Adversity
Tick, Tick, Tick Time Flies
I Thought I knew You
Marriage Is Complicated, If It’s Not You Have A Problem
A Liar Your Heart
Open Relationships Sounds Good, But….
Cheaters A Dime A Dozen
Guns and Money Are Indirect Killers
Love After Being Cheated On
Breaking Up: A Heart and Mind Struggle
Dating After Cheating
Sex and Money: A Vulnerable Conversation
Breaking Out After The Breakup
Surviving The Art of Cheating
The Art of Cheating
Throwaway People

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If The Relationship Didn’t Work Once, Don’t Try Again

One of the cruellest tricks your heart can play on you is making you believe that a relationship with the same person will be better the second time around. The truth is that you only should be considering this if you are desperate to be in a relationship. The second time around usually will not work, because you will soon realize that whatever issues you thought you had fixed will still be there – they had merely been put on hold while that person was no longer in your life. But when you get back into the relationship, you inevitably push play on that ‘pause’ button you had hit before leaving. Did you really forget what caused you to break up in the first place? Or does your heart just want to romanticize what occurred?

The problem with the second time around is that you both have moved on in the meanwhile, and maybe you have even changed – that change is not really for you though, it is meant to send a signal to the person that will come after you. You might have been the catalyst for the change, but the benefits go towards the next person. The change that looks so invigorating it makes you want to give that relationship another try however is but a lie, it’s a façade. So, you need to remember that the beneficiary of this change is your successor, even if that change was the cause of your break-up.

It’s easy to get caught up in a second-time-around romance, because it’s familiar and that feels good. But your mind should be telling you to proceed with extreme caution. You mind looks at the reality of what led to your break-up, while your heart chooses to only pay attention to the good stuff. The heart has a way of turning a blind eye to the bad things because they hurt, glamorizing the good things instead, to the point that they are too good to be true. You start questioning your choices and decisions, asking yourself why you even broke up in the first place. The heart doesn’t have to challenge your mind, because once it focuses on the good things you can get out of your relationship, you automatically want to feel and end up believing that person has changed. While deep down inside you, you know that is not the truth. You only want to see the good in that person, but remember that you are only reiterating a pattern, repeating the same steps you took when you first started dating. It’s not until you’ve been in a relationship for a while that the cracks start to show…and it won’t be different from the first time. The reason you end up breaking up again is more than likely to be the same as the first time. 

I am not saying that all second-time relationships are doomed, and you should stay away like you would with fire, but more often than not, rekindling fires you put out is not worth the time, energy or heartbreak that will ensue. You have to be honest with yourself, and own the cause of the first break-up, or else you will treat the second-time-around as if the first one never even occurred. You might each say “Let’s start afresh”, but how do you do that when you have history behind you? You can’t erase history. 

If you firmly believe that you must try a second time, however, then at least take precautions, and date for a very long time. You both should continue to see other people, and definitely keep the L word out of your conversations. Both of you should have long, deep conversations – do not simply communicate, dig deeper and talk about your first relationship, even if that means you’ll end up in tears. You’ll have to go beneath the surface and hold nothing back, discussing what brought about the (first) break-up. 

Second-time relationships usually don’t work, and while it might appeal to you, think before you throw yourself headlong in one of those. There was a reason why you split up after all, and you shouldn’t overlook it. The grass is not always greener on the other side – it just gives you that illusion.

Blogs

Tick, Tick,Tick Time Flies

I Thought I Knew You

A Liar Your Heart

Marriage Is Complicated, if It’s Not You Have A Problem

Open Relationship Sounds Good, But…

Cheaters A Dime A Dozen

Love After Being Cheated On

Breaking Up: A Heart and Mind Struggle

Dating After Cheating

Sex and Money: A Vulnerable Conversation

Breaking Out After The Breakup

Surviving The Art of Cheating

The Art of Cheating

Throwaway People

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Diversity Brings With It Adversity

Diversity

We are compartmentalized from the time we are born, boy or girl. As we progress in life, every aspect of our life is put into a compartment, similar to a postal worker putting mail into slots. These compartments fill up with people that have similar characteristics as you: gay or straight, rich or poor, black or white. The compartment with the most people is usually the leader and makes the decisions. That group determines how we should live our life, or try to influence people in other compartments that their way of thinking is the right way. That group of people is the decision maker of all the other compartments.

Diversity is just that, a compartment that is trying to break out from the bigger group. Diverse people have always had to fight to be noticed. They have had to fight to be heard. They have had to fight to stay true to their beliefs or run the risk of being taken over by the larger compartment. Diversity brings with adversity because the big compartment will not feel fulfilled until it has control over all the other compartments. Adversity comes about because the smaller groups usually do not have the money, support, or decision making authority to become bigger, due to the bigger group manipulating certain aspects of rules that can keep them in that same compartment. Even if their compartment gets bigger, there are safeguards in place that are meant to stop them. 

Diversity is the uniqueness we all have that is usually not applied to individuals but groups: migrants or Afro Americans. When one person in a group commits a crime, or otherwise challenges the thinking of the group, that effects the whole group. It doesn’t matter if it’s a benefit or hinderance to the compartment. Individuals are not looked at as much as taking the easier route of passing judgment on the whole group.  It is so unfair that groups of people are given such negative thoughts and rules because of what one or two people in the group might do.

Diverse people will always have to fight because the bigger group will always be afraid of themselves becoming one of those diverse groups. It’s not that it’s impossible to happen. Diverse groups are getting more vocal and laws are getting more acceptable to diverse groups. It’s not to say that it’s smooth sailing, but as time goes by and new generations of people are filling the groups, the way of thinking is changing. Technology has helped by letting people in the groups engage with other people that are in that same group, but only in a different part of the world. They are getting stronger and the bigger group is getting worried. There is strength, not only in numbers, but in the way of thinking. 

Diverse groups don’t have to feel held down like a foot on your chest, they are getting stronger and starting to push that foot away. The bigger group should be afraid, because when one of the diverse groups gets the power of the bigger group, they will not know how to deal with that foot on their chest. They haven’t had the years of adversity to have learned how to protect themselves. They will succumb to their new conditions of being held down and held back. Diverse people must keep moving forward, they must keep having conversations with other groups. They must continue to challenge the bigger group and themselves to see outside of their compartment.

There are many diverse groups, and not all are groups that should be given any power, no matter how big they are. There must be ways to judge and censor these groups, because them getting bigger and having more power can be a threat to all people, no matter the group you are in. 

Adversity has to stop being an end result to diversity.

Blogs

Tick, Tick,Tick Time Flies

I Thought I Knew You

A Liar Your Heart

Marriage Is Complicated, if It’s Not You Have A Problem

Open Relationship Sounds Good, But…

Cheaters A Dime A Dozen

Love After Being Cheated On

Breaking Up: A Heart and Mind Struggle

Dating After Cheating

Sex and Money: A Vulnerable Conversation

Breaking Out After The Breakup

Surviving The Art of Cheating

The Art of Cheating

Throwaway People

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Tick, Tick, Tick Time Flies


It is said that from the time you are born, your life ticks away to death. I was sitting here one day thinking how fast time seems to move; one minute I was in my twenties now I’m in my sixties. Where did all those years go? I’ve had some very good times and some very bad times. I really can’t say which outweighed the other. It really doesn’t matter because it’s gone and can never be gotten back. It’s true when you hear older people say, “If only I knew then what I know now.” I will attest to that because I would have done so many things differently. I’ve not always made good choices now that I can look back, however, I made the choices I thought was good at the time. What I’m learning as I’ve aged is you can’t change the past so let it go. Why hold onto it because it benefits nobody. Age brings a certain appreciation to situations, people, just everything you encounter. I thought I appreciated things I encountered when I was younger, was I ever so wrong? You have relationships that come and go and each is supposed to be a learning experience for the next relationship. That’s true, except I didn’t always take what I learned and apply it to the next one. When you’re young, you think you’re taking that knowledge and using it but that’s not always the case because sometimes I just didn’t know how. 

I appreciated things but I now that I’m older I realized I didn’t appreciate things at all. I just rolled with them. When you’re in your twenties and thirties you just want to have fun and be happy. I know that’s what I wanted to do. Then reality starts to settle in that the world really doesn’t care about you or me. I started to realize I have to figure things out because the clock is ticking. That’s when it starts to get scary. How much time do I have left? How much time do I have to appreciate the things around me?  When I finally came to my senses, I realized that I needed to learn to appreciate any and everything I encounter. I always told people I was the most least observant person around; I saw nothing. I wasn’t naïve just I didn’t see anything. Someone could ask me, “Did you see that person? Isn’t he/she cute?“ I wouldn’t have been paying attention. I was always in my own world. 

When my first grandson came is when I realized how much I’ve missed out on. It was time to grow up and act like I wanted to leave something behind. When grandson two and three came it was time to stop thinking about it and it was time for action. I wasn’t the greatest mom but neither the worst, however, I knew I could be a much better person than I had been. There’s always a trigger that makes you stop and say, “Enough is enough!” Everyone has that trigger, it’s just a matter of when it goes off. 

Now, I look at things and, instead of rushing through, I stop and look and try to understand things. I learned that it’s okay to take a break. Its okay to say, “I love you” without it feeling corny. There’s nothing wrong with saying, “I’m sorry.” I want to leave my grandsons hopefully in a better place than I was in or their mother. I can’t do anything about the world that’s not in my control, but the things I can control I want them to be things they can be proud of. 

I’ve written some blogs about relationships because whatever your relationship, you have to recognize it for what it is. You don’t want to spend your life in a bad relationship, and thirty years from now with the clock ticking you wonder why you stayed. You can’t get those years back, so why lose them when you don’t have to? I hope my grandsons understand that nobody is perfect. If you want perfection, you will be alone. We all have flaws, though some will never admit it just like some will never grow up. You can’t be twenty for the rest of your life because the clock is ticking and you can’t stop age. I often hear age is just a number. That may be fine when you’re thirty but by time forty rolls around, your body starts reacting differently. You maybe can hide it from the outside world but you can’t hide it from yourself. It happened to me. 

If you’re young, enjoy being young. Have fun, but stop every now and then and appreciate the people and things that you encounter. It’s for your benefit as well as the people in your life.

Blogs.
I Thought I Knew You 
Marriage Is Complicated, If It’s Not You Have A Problem
A Liar Your Heart
Open Relationships Sound Good, But…
Cheaters A Dime A Dozen
Love After Being Cheated On
Breaking Up: A Heart and Mind Struggle
Dating After Cheating
Sex and Money; Vulnerable Conversations
Breaking Out After The Breakup
Surviving The Art of Cheating 
The Art of Cheating
Retirementanddogs.blog
UniqueThings.blog
Aninoids.wordpress.com – The Aninoids a children’s book coming this spring

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I Thought I Knew You

“I thought I knew you” are words we’ve said to someone in our lives, whether they were a friend or a lover. There is a certain way we look at someone, and when that person does something out of character, it can throw your perception of that person off.

When we are children, we have two personalities: one for our parents and then there’s the personality that we have for our friends. When we get older, we adjust those personalities to different situations that we’re in. There’s the work personality, the friend personality and the one you show in a relationship. The people in our lives, no matter their role, see us through the personality that we bring into that situation. When we do something different, it makes them question whether they ever really knew us.

When we are in a relationship and the person we love suddenly goes from being a person we know to someone we no longer know, it makes us question whether we knew that person at all. It doesn’t have to be a relationship; it could be a friendship where we see a person that we know change into someone we don’t know.

When two people grow apart, we see that person as someone different than when we started the relationship/friendship. The change can be subtle, or it may be dramatic, but it makes us question whether what we knew of that person was real.

People change for different reasons and it’s possible that all reasons are not meant to be hurtful. When someone close to us changes, it’s hard not to say something to make that person aware of what we’re seeing. It could be that person doesn’t realize he/she has changed. There could be that two different personalities aren’t being separated, but coming together. When you go to work and then go home, are you leaving your work personality at work or is it meshing with the home personality? You have a problem if you can’t separate personalities. You date someone that your friends tell you is no good for you because you’re changing is another example of how personalities can come together and not for the right reason.

Have you ever laid in bed with someone and thought, ‘I really don’t know this person.’ or ‘Who are you?’ You’re asking that question because the personality you were shown is not that same personality. All of this makes you wonder who is the real person; the one from before or the one now?

I am not saying that people should not grow because then we would be stagnant. I am saying that people change and the person you think you know might turn out to be someone you don’t know. I mean, do we really ever know somebody? We think we know the person but do we really know what someone is thinking.

We only know what someone shows and says. How do we know it’s the truth? When that person changes, it can be hard to accept the changes because you’re comfortable with the person you know. If you can’t adapt to the new person, whether in your opinion it’s good or bad, then the relationship/friendship will cause you to grow apart from that person. Then there’s the problem of you adapting: is that taking you from being the person you are? Sometimes, you have to let that person go.
You never know if the person that’s your friend, spouse or whatever relationship you might have will ever change. It’s hard to watch someone you’ve been close to for so long change into someone you don’t know, especially when there’s nothing you can do about it.

I thought I knew you, but I guess I was wrong.

Blogs

A Liar Your Heart

Marriage Is Complicated. If It’s Not, You Have A Problem

Open Relationship Sound Good, But…
Cheaters: A Dime A Dozen

Love After Being Cheated On

Breaking Up; A Heart and Mind Struggle

Dating After Cheating

Sex and Money: Vulnerable Conversations

Breaking Out After The Breakup


Surviving The Art of Cheating


The Art of Cheating

Featured

Marriage Is Complicated, If It’s Not You Have A Problem

Marriage is complicated, and I’ll tell you why. It’s because there are no written words, describing the feelings that bring two people together its not an easy task. It doesn’t matter whether it’s a same-sex couple or a heterosexual couple; what matters is not the two individuals who are involved in a marriage, but what goes on between those two people, and not just sexually speaking. Those two people have to express feelings which can’t be put down into words, or voiced even – it all comes down to actions. How else can you tell someone you love them, if not through your actions? Words may come easy, and writing them on paper may be just as easy, but to actually show someone what’s in your heart…that is what’s truly amazing. As they say, “It’s easier said than done” after all, isn’t it? 

Sure enough you have friends, the kind you’d cut off your arm for, but you wouldn’t marry. You have friends you’d die for, and yet you wouldn’t marry them. You have friends you’d sleep with, but you still wouldn’t marry them. The reason is that something is missing, that indescribable feeling which you can’t express through words is not there.

I hear people say after a few dates that they’re ready to take the relationship to the next level, which is marriage. But marriage is about having that feeling in your heart which you are not able to describe with words. It’s something that goes beyond what you feel for your very best friend, it is unlike anything you’ve ever felt before. Of course, I also believe that your spouse should be a friend first, because marriage is an extension of that relationship – it goes further, and it has to be the same for both of you. 

You are two different people and you both have this indescribable feeling in your heart that makes you want to spend the rest of your life with someone, even if that feeling is fleeting. When you do get married, you have to make compromises, but that doesn’t mean you lose yourself into that other person’s world. If that happens, then you spend all your time feeling miserable and questioning how you got to that point. 

Marriage is also about trying to bring two minds together, which in itself can be complicated, because naturally every person is unique. That uniqueness makes each person special, and when you meet someone and eventually decide to marry into that uniqueness, you are put to the test. How true can you be to yourself if you give away your uniqueness?

These days, especially young people get into marriages that their friends and family deem to be wrong. But the truth is that no one except the spouses themselves know, nobody can look into their hearts to see if the love is real and if the wedding was but just a impulsive decision. You would have to look at someone’s actions to form an opinion. While the heart gives that indescribable feeling, it’s the mind that keeps one grounded.

So, what makes it so hard to get over a failed marriage is feeling that whatever led you to get married in the first place is broken and can’t be fixed by your heart alone. You need the help of your mind to show you the way, because it’s hard to let go of that feeling. It’s a powerful feeling, especially when marriage is involved. Marriages end for so many reasons these days, it’s hard to keep up with all of them, but if you both still have that same feeling you had when you decided to wed, that feeling that can’t be described, then don’t throw in the towel just yet. Too many married people these days give up too easily without putting up a fight, they don’t even try to salvage their relationship. They see it as a disposable tool that, when it breaks or is no longer needed, can simply be discarded and perhaps replaced. 

I’m married, and my spouse and I had to fight for each other and our love every inch of the way. If it hadn’t been for that indescribable feeling in our hearts, we would have never made it. We fought tooth and nail to learn to compromise without losing ourselves in each other. Marriage doesn’t mean you’re not going to argue or get fed up. It means that, if you want it to work, you need to realize at some point that the reason why you decided to get married is still relevant. You have to calm down and get rational, and remember that nothing should be settled until then. Because making any decisions based on your instincts, when you’re upset, is never a good move. 

If your marriage is easy, and you both are just going with the flow, then you’re both flowing nowhere. You have got to row that boat – you can’t just let it drift along.

If you’re married, or if you’re thinking about getting married, make sure you’re getting the actions you need from your other half; make sure you’re doing those actions yourself. But, most importantly, make sure your heart is taking you to a place words cannot describe.

In my next blog, I’ll surprise you.

Blogs:
Retirementanddogs.blog
Uniquethings.blog
A Liar: Your Heart
Open Relationships Sound Good, But…
Cheaters: A Dime, A Dozen
Love After Being Cheated On
Breaking Up: A Heart and Mind Struggle
Dating After Cheating
Sex and Money: A Vulnerable Conversation 
Breaking Out After The Breakup
Surviving The Art of Cheating
The Art of Cheating

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A Liar Your Heart


A liar can tell more lies than there is ice cream and all their lies are just as smooth and good. When you have a relationship and lies start to come into the relationship, the relationship is doomed. A relationship cannot survive if there are lies involved. While your heart will let you forgive, your mind won’t let you move forward. Lies take away trust and without trust you’re always questioning that person who lied. If not directly, then mentally. This happens no matter if you are a forgiving person or not. Your mind just won’t let you get past that you were lied to. It’s just the way people are built. The heart and mind don’t always align. 

There are all different types of lies from cheating lies to lies that make you feel grateful that you’ve been told the lie. Here’s a few: I have to work late (common lie); I’m hanging with my friends; I didn’t want to upset you; I did it for you; I’m playing games on my computer (3am in the morning); I’m talking to a family member. These also can be applied to messaging. Just because it’s written, it doesn’t mean it won’t hurt any less when you find out. A lie is a lie whether it’s verbal or written. It all boils down to the same thing, you’re involved with someone that isn’t honest.

Social media gives liars another avenue to cheat. I don’t blame social media, however, if there was no social media, would your partner/spouse have met that other person?  There is the person who lies but is horrible at it. The person lies, then you go on social media and find out the truth and when confronted the liar has no reason for the lie. This person goes with the person who lies just because the truth is too hard for him/her to confront. 

When you’re involved with a smooth and good liar it might take months and even years before you find out the truth. A liar is like a car salesman; very good at reading people and using words. There are signs along the way that your spouse/partner are lying but for some reason your heart chooses to let it slide. One lie usually snowballs to another and another. After that it becomes it’s own story. A liar has to keep it going or face getting caught. You have to question the first lie or you’re only going to get so caught up that you won’t know the truth because you’re so used to the lie. The liar gets caught and he/she forgets what the truth really is.

When you’re in a relationship of any kind the truth matters and it should matter to both of you. If one of you steps outside the relationship, rather than lie, you have to be honest. It’s not easy to confess to your wrongdoings but think about the other person. A lie only makes the events that come from lying harder to move on from. When you lie it will come out and the trust is gone. People make mistakes and sometimes you can get caught up in something and before you know it you’re lying to your spouse/partner. It’s not right but things can happen sometimes. If you love your partner/spouse then you have to come clean and communicate what happened. You can suggest counseling as an option. You have to be honest, I mean, sit the person down and open your heart; explain how you got caught up. I’m not saying this will be easy and definitely not saying that telling the truth will save your relationship. The ball is in the other person’s court as to whether he/she wants to continue the relationship. You can’t blame your partner/spouse if ending the relationship is what is decided. No one wins when you lie. There’s only unnecessary  heartache and pain to someone you claimed to love. If someone can come into your life and cause you to lie to your spouse/partner, then the relationship is over. The words just haven’t been said. Why lie just to prolong it?

If you both decide to continue the relationship, then know it won’t be easy. The liar will be doing any and everything to say he/she is sorry. Your heart will want you to forgive but your mind is harder to let it go. There will always be that slither of doubt about what you’re being told. Even 20 years later there will be something, not everything, but something said that will spring your mind into action and wonder if you’re being told the truth.

The next blog will be on marriage.

Blogs

Open Relationships Sound Good, But….
Cheaters A Dime Dozen
Love After Being Cheated On
Breaking Up: A Heart and Mind Struggle
Dating After Cheating
Sex and Money: Vulnerable Conversations
Breaking Out After the Breakup
Surviving The Art of Cheating
The Art of Cheating

Retirementsanddogs.blog

Unique things.blog

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Open Relationships Sound Good, But…

Having an open relationship sounds good, because it comes with the ability to have your cake and eat it too, as they say. Who wouldn’t like having the freedom to do whatever they want, then go back to somebody later and talk and maybe not acknowledge what they did. It’s as if you walk out a door and you’re no longer with somebody, but when you walk back in again you’re also back in a relationship with that person. Open relationships have been around for a long time, but they’ve never been a hot topic. Even these days, you don’t hear about it much, except maybe for people in the entertainment industry, but it happens and it’s all around us – it’s just that it’s a hushed conversation, it’s not out in the open. I personally believe that open relationships are good for couples that want to have a change, a couple that maybe needs a spark to reignite their passion, or maybe a couple that wants to take a break. It doesn’t mean that only relationships that are already on the rocks or near trouble should partake in an open relationship. A happy couple may still wish to try being in an open relationship so as to go to the next level, using the experience and knowledge acquired from the extra relationship to bring it into their regular relationship. 

These are but a few examples of the advantages that a couple could get from an open relationship, but there are more. An open relationship may even end up saving a couple’s actual relationship. In fact, there are times in a relationship when one or both of the people involved might feel neglected, unloved or unappreciated. An open relationship might for instance provide an ego boost. Furthermore, when someone dates others while in a relationship they may also get a different perspective of their actual relationship, realising for example that what they already have may not be as bad as they think. The grass isn’t necessarily always greener on the other side, and what better way to find that out than by going to the other side. I’m not saying that an open relationship will fix a troubled relationship, but it’s an option. 

However, if on the one hand open relationships may sound good, on the other hand there’s also plenty to consider that might stop one from actually going down that road. One of the biggest issues when it comes to open relationships is feelings. You can pretend that your spouse/partner going out with someone else wouldn’t matter, but it’s a lie more often than not. If you cares about someone, your heart will not let you not care about what’s happening. When a couple enters the open relationship territory, they always run the risk of one of them falling for the other person. You can’t rule the heart, so there is little, if anything, that can be done to stop your feelings for the other person from existing. Even if you decide to stop seeing that other person, sometimes that might not be enough to move forward, and next thing you know your actual relationship is in big trouble. 

What you need to have in an open relationship is boundaries and consequences – you need to accept being held accountable for not staying within the boundaries if you don’t. Example: a couple decides that the date should end at 2am and that the partner needs to be home; however, that doesn’t happen and the partner comes back in at 5am. In that case the consequence might be deciding there’ll be no dating outside the couple for a week. And you have to enforce the consequences, otherwise the rule is pointless. An open relationship takes lots of honest and open conversations. It might help to even write on paper the rules by which your open relationship will go by; this way, if needed, you both can refer to that piece of paper if your relationship needs to be put back on track. Writing things down might also help with accountability for going outside the boundaries. An open relationship is definitely one that both people have to want, and both people need to be all in for it. If there is any doubt, then don’t even think about getting into one because you will only be miserable. 

Personally, I’m neither for nor against open relationships, it all depends on the two people involved. It also depends on what you both expect to accomplish from entering an open relationship. You both have to definitely be on the same page. Love is no joke.

A relationship takes a lot of work on a daily basis. It involves growing together, while still finding a way to grow individually. A relationship is hard to handle, but the reward is priceless. The next blog will be on marriage, a rewarding union (sometimes).

Blogs:
Cheaters – A Dime, A Dozen
Love After Being Cheated On
Breaking Up: A Heart and Mind Struggle
Dating After Cheating
Sex and Money: Vulnerable Conversations
Breaking Out After The Breakup
Surviving The Art of Cheating

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Cheaters A Dime A Dozen


You don’t cook anymore. You don’t pay me any attention since the baby came. You don’t clean, and uou don’t fix yourself up. You are always tired. You don’t want to go out. You don’t want to have sex. You don’t hang on to my every word. You don’t want to do anything. You have no ambition. Sex with you is boring. You don’t please me anymore. You don’t help with the bills. You are always sleep or have a headache. You are always sick. You don’t treat me like you used to.
We don’t communicate. You don’t listen to me. 

These are some of the reasons that are given for a person to cheat. They may be valid in some cases, but cheating is an extreme way to solve the problem. I have cheated and I’m sure that many of you have too.. What you want in cheating is to make up the missing parts of your relationship by using someone else. I felt that way. I didn’t necessarily want to break up my relationship, but I did feel that there were things missing. I tried to talk to the person but got nowhere; nothing but promises to fix or at least compromise on areas that needed fixing. Nothing ever changed so I found what I needed elsewhere.

Cheaters fall into categories such as the person (like me) that doesn’t want to break up but just fix what’s wrong. There’s the cheater who actually wants to break up but doesn’t know how to say the words. Then there’s the cheater who is using you for sexual gratification or money and could care less about you. This person probably wouldn’t care if you cheated yourself. Then there’s a cheater who just can’t keep his/her hands to themselves and just need sexual gratification from as many people as they can. It’s just about sex and feeding their ego. 

Whatever the reason is not a good reason. I will remember the look on the person’s face when I finally got caught and came clean about my adventure. The look of hurt in that person’s eyes made me realize that it’s a look I never want to see again. You might have a valid reason in your mind to cheat and maybe, just maybe, that person should be listening more to what you are saying, but cheating isn’t the answer unless you just don’t care about another person’s feelings. 

Cheating has been made easy because of the internet. You go to bed but your partner/spouse stays up pretending to play a game or just scrolling around the internet, and before uou can close your eyes that person is chatting up someone in another house who might me cheating on their spouse/partner. Don’t sleep on this; it’s a common occurrence since the computer age. I used to blame the internet for making sites like Match.com so readily available, but I’ve come to realize that it’s the person’s fault for cheating, not the internet, because you don’t have to let a conversation turn into a semi-romance. There is always someone out there that’s going to try your relationship whether it’s because of jealousy or they just want or like what you have. There is always going to be someone that tries a relationship; they don’t care about you and if the cheater takes the bait, then the problems start. The person that tries to wiggle into your relationship doesn’t have to be a stranger. It can be your closest friend, so don’t think that because it’s a friend they would never do that, because they will.

What I’ve learned from cheating is there have to be boundaries of what will be allowed  outside the boundaries and then you have to make a choice, me, or the other person. Don’t settle for less because if you give an inch, then the cheater will think anything he/she does can be easily explained and you’ll believe it. One thing you positively must do is listen to your head, not your heart, because your heart only wants love and happiness, not pain. Don’t ignore changes in a person and definitely don’t make excuses for the cheater. When a person cheats there are signs. It’s always up to you to acknowledge those signs and take some kind of action so the cheater knows they are being watched. A cheater can only go as far as you let him/her go. I know no-one wants to go through the heartache and breakup of a relationship but is it better to let it go for months with the same result? I mean, there are people who have an open relationship but that should be a conversation between you and your spouse/partner. I didn’t want my relationship to end; I thought it was fun, a game and something to do. When the relationship was over I realized I had made a very big mistake. It was my cheating that caused the end so what could I say? Nothing at all. If you are a cheater and you’re just trying to get what you feel is missing from your relationship, before you cheat, either try therapy or, if you’re that miserable let the person go. You can’t have your cake and eat it too. The truth will eventually come out whether it’s one month or one year. The truth will get into your relationship and will end your relationship.The next blog will be on open relationships, good or bad.

Blogs
Love After Being Cheated On
Breaking Up: A Heart and Mind Struggle
Dating After Cheating
Sex and Money: Vulnerable Conversations
Breaking Out After The Breakup
Surviving The Art of Cheating
The Art of Cheating

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Love After Being Cheated On


You’ve come a long way since you found yourself in a relationship with a cheater. You’ve learned to love yourself and put the cheater in the past. You’ve fought a battle between your heart and mind. You’ve taken your time to understand what went wrong at least as far as you’re concerned. You’ve had your alone time to cry, scream and blame. You’ve taken your head out of the shell to see what’s ahead. You’ve started dating. You’ve taken it slowly to learn about someone. You’ve given yourself the time to process what you want in the future. You’ve listened to your brain as much as your heart. You’re ready for love.

Love is a process, and there are no shortcuts that will lead to a lasting relationship. I believe this is even true with relationships where it’s love at first sight. You have to take one day at a time to let a relationship grow. The thought most people don’t get is a relationship should never stop growing. When you’ve been hurt, it’s only natural to be extra cautious in your feelings. You can’t let those cautious feelings make you so removed from what your heart feels that it effects your relationship. It’s not that what your heart feels is wrong. It’s that your heart can cloud the truth. The only way to get through the cloud is with time. Everyday has to be an awakening to your relationship. You have to both communicate daily and truthfully. It will become a problem if one person holds anything back. There will always be a very, very small thought in the back of your mind that will question things about your new person. You ask questions and keep asking until that small thought is something you can live with comfortably. You need to talk to that person about what happened so it is understood why you are taking it slowly or asking questions over and over again.

You’ve found love again, and that in itself is awesome. Some people never rebound from being cheated on. They stay closed off emotionally, so to find love again is awesome. Be happy, and enjoy it. Just don’t ignore the warning signs because there will be signs. You struggled to understand what you want so don’t short yourself. Remember you should never look for someone to make you happy. What you want is someone to enhance the happiness you’ve found for yourself. 

The person that you’ve now entrusted with your heart and mind must be open about their past too. I know some people when they start a new serious relationship aren’t interested in the past because they feel the past has no baring on the future. The past is just that, the past. I feel you should talk about the past because you can learn about that person from how the past was dealt with. I mean I want to know how, what and why. When you are being told about their past, listen to your mind and ask questions. Don’t ignore the signs. You can learn a lot about a person just by listening. The best part of communication is listening to what another person is saying and asking questions. This is not for a person you are just casually dating. This is for that person you feel will be in for the long haul. I cannot say it enough. Take your time. This is not a race to the altar. Love is compromises, but the compromises have to be good for both of you. It should never be that when you compromise, you give up more than you really want. That would not be good. Remember, if a relationship is superficial, like a plant without water, it will die. It might die slowly, but it will die. You have to always be true to yourself. I wish you well in your new relationship.

Blogs
Breaking Up: A Heart and Mind Struggle
Dating After Cheating
Sex and Money: Vulnerable Conversations
Breaking Out After The Breakup
Surviving The Art of Cheating

Featured

Breaking Up: A Heart and Mind Struggle


There is a fierce heart and mind struggle when a relationship is over, no matter what the reason. Breaking up due to cheating, once the anger is over, is difficult, although for some, it should be cut and dry. Love is an emotion which has no logic and your mind can be your truth. Your loved one cheats, and while you know it should be over, it’s not that easy. You brings all kinds of emotions until accept the truth. There isn’t anything we can do about our emotions but our mind can change hundreds of times. Let me get a little more in-depth, so you can visualize what I’m saying. 

You have been in a relationship for one year, and then you find out your other half is cheating. You don’t just stop loving that person. You might be angry for a while, but the love is still there. Your heart tries to justify the relationship to you by making you feel that maybe, just maybe, there is something you should have done or can do to fix what’s wrong. Your mind, however, is telling you the relationship wasn’t all that, there were so many issues that you ignored, and that this was bound to happen. It’s almost like having a devil on one shoulder and an angel on the other, except there really isn’t a devil – it’s your truth. A breakup can cause you to think that a relationship was much better than it really was. You can be near perfect and so into being that you don’t see that maybe that isn’t what the other person wants or you can flip this and the other person is doing all he/she can but it’s you’re still not satisfied. The heart won’t tell you this, but what it will say is: “go talk to him/her or just pick up the phone and call.” The heart wants to give the relationship every opportunity to continue, even though your mind tells you it’s a dead end street. The mind wants you to move on, not try to justify and fix. 

Breaking up is not easy, and if you’ve been in a relationship for a long time, it’s very difficult to see how to move on. It can be hard to see the light at the end of the tunnel. This heart and mind struggle is part of the process of breaking up, and in order to get to your truth you have to go through a process of self-examination and being able to look at your relationship for what really was. It’s very hard to be objective when your heart is broken, no matter how much you’re hurting. The heart/mind struggle is when you have to decide which one you will listen to; not just listen, but also act upon. You can try to go back, or you can go through the process and trust that, in time, your heart will heal and you can move on. The choice is yours of which way you go, but don’t rush to any decision. Take your time. Treat it like two boxers feeling each other out. There’s no quick knockout. You keep dancing around until you feel that you are ready to deliver that final blow to your heart that’s holding onto your ex. I think most people who have dealt with a breakup or are going through a breakup know that time is the healer of whatever kind of hurt you have. The heart mind/struggle is not just for breakups but can looked at in all things that have hurt you. I guess, when you love someone, no matter what he/she has done, the emotional bond is a bond that is not easily broken, and to get to that point takes one day at a time to get the strength to deliver that knockout punch. 

The next blog will be: You found that next person, or so you think.

Blogs
The Art of Cheating
Surviving The Art of Cheating
Breaking Out After The Breakup
Sex and Money: Vulnerable Conversation
Dating After Cheating

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Dating After Cheating


You don’t realize how strong you really are until your heart is broken and you go through the process of making yourself feel whole again. It takes time, sometimes a long time, to heal a broken heart, but it’s not a race you need to win – take the time you need to know who you really are. We sometimes forget that in a relationship you give part of yourself to make compromises. Remember that when it’s over you can take that back. Take ownership and to learn what YOU want, not anybody else. 
Dating is not something you should rush into, especially if you want it to turn into something serious. You have to take your time to get to know people as friends first. A relationship without friendship will never be a lasting relationship. When you date someone, don’t look at them as a potential love interest, but as a person you just enjoy going out with, with no sex involved. You should get to know the person first, and that takes times. I don’t mean just the good act that people put on, but the real stuff they hide deep inside because it may not be so nice to face. It’s up to you to decide if that is something you can and are willing to deal with. It takes a honest discussion with yourself. The more you date, the more you get to see not only what you’re looking for, but also what you don’t want from a person. Be patient. Don’t get serious too fast and throw yourself headlong into a situation just because all your friends have somebody. You are still fragile in your heart, so don’t go on a date and think you’re in love just because someone said all the right things on that first date. The second date you might see a totally different person that you don’t like at all. When you feel like you are ready to date, do it with another couple. This way, you have someone to make you feel a little less nervous and you have a second set of eyes and ears on the person you are dating. If possible, even if it may sounds strange, don’t just date one person – remember these are supposed to be casual, amicable dates, not romantic dates with no ‘hidden agenda’. Romance shouldn’t be in your thought process for a long while. If you think it’s a ‘love at first sight’ kind of situation, what you need to do is go back home and stay put until that feeling goes away. Sure enough, there are rare occasions when you meet someone and both of you immediately know that love is in the air, but since you just got over a bad experience, I wouldn’t trust my judgement. Again, take your time, have some fun and be true to yourself. You want to feel whole, and if you think that sleeping with somebody right away is going to fix you, then you’re wrong. You will only hate yourself the next day, don’t do it. This is another situation where the intervention, the interference if you will, of another couple could help you avoid making that big mistake. The more you go out and the more people you meet, the more you can and will trust yourself. There’s nothing worse than having your heart and mind fighting, and that happens once you get into a relationship. Don’t forget all you’ve been through to get to this point. Another thing you need to steer clear of at all costs is comparing people to your ex. That’s a big no. You should never compare and contrast people, and if you do then you aren’t ready to date. You still have some issues that haven’t been resolved. You have to be able to look at each person individually, and not judge that person based on your past experiences. Everyone has their own qualities and you need to accept them based on what you think will contribute to your happiness, regardless of what your relationships were like in the past. You want to be yourself, not who you think that person wants. You, and only you, know who you are, so don’t put on any act because eventually it will be exposed. Have some fun dating, and enjoy just being able to breathe some fresh air, because now you are free.

The next blog will be about the struggle between heart and mind when a relationship ends.

Blogs:
The Art of Cheating
Surviving The Art of Cheating
Breaking Out After The Breakup
Sex and Money: Vulnerable Conversations.

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Sex and Money: Vulnerable Conversations


There are many reasons that people cheat, and usually sex and money are two things that are high on the list of reasons for someone to step outside of their relationship. I’m taking a step back in advising you on how to get beyond the hurt of finding out your partner, straight or gay, has cheated on you. When you get wrapped up in the emotions of love, there usually isn’t a conversation about money. You’re probably already engaged in sex, so no conversation is usually needed unless you aren’t open minded to new positions or you’re just lousy at it. (There are people that are lousy at sex.) You can get so involved in the emotional part of the relationship that you forget about your own needs because you’re usually more involved on making your relationship work, which means you’re being accommodating. This is a big mistake. You can’t keep it up, and as time goes on, you’re going to feel very unfulfilled.

Sex should never, ever be a one-way street. You want your gratification just like you’re try to give gratification to the other person. When you forgo your needs to please someone else, you are asking for a huge problem as time goes on. Sex needs to be part of a conversation you engage in, so you know that mutual needs are being met. If it’s bad, but you really feel that this person is someone you would like to invest time and energy in, then you have to speak up. No, it’s not easy to say to someone, “You should do this or that to satisfy me,” but think about it, if you don’t in the beginning, then as time goes on, you will be looking for this gratification outside of your relationship. Then you will want to have the conversation that you should have had months ago. You have to introduce the sex conversation slowly, and doing a show and tell is a perfect way to approach the subject. There’s also the after sex glow, when you’re both relaxing and enjoying the moment; a perfect time to have the discussion. Intimacy is not sex, but intimacy can lead to sex. Make sure you have intimacy. Intimacy would be kissing, holding hands, anything short of actually engaging in performing a sexual act, therefore you can be naked and have intimacy going on. You just have to realize that intimacy is also the ability to have delicate conversations that may hurt the person’s feelings, coming from you in a way that is loving and shows that you understand how that person is feeling. How would you like someone to break it down to you if you were on the other end of such a conversation? 

Money is a very, very, very hard conversation for two people to have. Unlike the sex conversation, which should happen in the beginning of any and all relationships, money should be discussed as soon as you feel that this person is the one. There’s no reason to do this with every person you get involved with because then your business will end up just out there to be talked about by everybody. (If you’re rich, you might not care.) If you feel every relationship is the one, then you have a problem that needs to be addressed before you have any relationship. The only way you will know how to progress in your relationship regarding financial items is to discuss what each of you are bringing to the table. Actually, if you’re going to the movies and dinner, who will pay? A conversation does not need to happen until you know each other well enough to know that no one feels that he/she is being taken advantage of. This conversation is much different from a what you have in your bank account conversation. That’s a deep conversation that exposes you financially, so you must be so sure that living together or marriage is on the horizon before having this conversation. If you’re giving, giving, and giving, and the other person is just taking, this will almost certainly lead to cheating. The person that’s taking will be the one that cheats because that person doesn’t have to work on the financial aspects of a relationship. The giver will not be the cheater because all of their time is spent trying to keep the other person financially happy. There is, for certain, a financial aspect to a relationship. If there isn’t, how could you buy things like a house or have any type of living arrangement? 

No one wants to feel used, and if you get nothing in return, either in sex or money, that is how you will feel used. It might take you some time to actually realize what’s going on because you are so busy trying to keep the relationship going that you get blindsided when the truth of what’s really going on hits you. Conversations in the beginning of a relationship can save a lot of heartache as the relationship progresses. It is not easy, and the longer you put it off, the more vulnerable the relationship will be.

Blogs
The Art of Cheating
Surviving The Art of Cheating
Breaking Out After the Breakup

Next blog: Dating After The Breakup.

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Breaking Out After The Breakup


Are you ready to leave your shell? I talked about giving yourself time to learn about you in “Surviving The Art of Cheating”. When you are getting over a breakup, especially one that involved cheating, you have to take all the time you need to heal. The mind and heart battle is hard, and it’s grueling. You can’t rush it or you will end up back in the same place of blaming and trying to go back to the cheater. There is no race. You will know you’re ready to break out of your shell and face the world when you can evaluate your past relationship with honesty and not fall apart at the mention of the cheater’s name. 

Try to think of this whole process like a turtle. You go into the shell for protection to evaluate the situation, and then you slowly stick your head out to test the waters. And finally you move ever so slowly to a new place to be comfortable and hopefully find love. When you break out, this is when you start to slowly mingle with others and try to get your life back in some order. There’s nothing wrong with going out as long as you go home alone. This is not the time to be dating. You need time to get to know you what you like, what you want, and what makes you comfortable. This is best done alone. If you involve someone else, it wouldn’t be about you but would be about us. And that’s a big no. That’s not the best right now. Stay away from places you used to go to with the cheater. Stay away from mutual friends as they have nothing to offer you at this point. And if they are really your friends, they will understand that you need time. This isn’t forever, just until you are emotionally strong enough to hear about your prior relationship. 

You have to realize how far you have come from finding out your partner was cheating to being able to see the relationship for what it was. There should be some clarity before you decide to break out. Again, I’m going to tell you it’s not easy. Actually, it’s hell going through the process of a break up and then adjusting to being alone. There are some people that feel they can’t be alone. That’s bull. Each of us can be alone and thrive. It’s just so much easier with someone else, but you can do it alone. It is just a matter of you taking your time. You breaking out is the most important person. 

The first time you go out into the world, go with a purpose. You go out with confidence and a determination that you know you can go forward in your life. You go out with a smile that you never turn into a frown while you’re out. The point is even if you’re not ready to go a mile just go half, or hell go a quarter, whatever you are comfortable with. Do something that consumes your thoughts with anything but where you’ve been. Again, its not easy, and hell it’s hard as hell. But you can do it, just don’t give up so easily. You take every little step you can forward because if you go back, what’s there? Nothing but heartache. 

Breaking out after a break up is challenging and mentally exhausting, but you can survive. You have good friends. Talk to them. These are your friends, not your mutual friends. You talk to your friends. Be honest with them, and hear them when they give you a different perspective on you, not your previous relationship, just you. We all need a different perception on who we are sometimes. The way we think of ourselves is sometimes not how others see us. That outside the window person can give a clear view into that inner person that we sometimes ignore. You should listen and think about what they are saying and give it some real consideration that maybe this is a part of me that I din’t acknowledge. Give their perception time in your healing process. 

You’ve broken out after the break up. Just exhale and smile.

Blogs
The Art of Cheating
Surviving The Art of Cheating

I will discuss the two biggest reasons people cheat, sex and money next.

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Surviving The Art of Cheating

Surviving The Art of Cheating 

You are ahead of the game and you don’t even know it. It takes a lot of strength to get out of a cheating relationship. Surviving takes a lot of time and though the first thing you might think of doing is something impulsive like having sex with the first person available, it is the wrong thing to do. You just want to feel something, anything that will make you forget about your cheating partner;, you want to forget that feeling that is slowly eating you alive, you want to stop the fight between your heart and your mind, which are both trying to control your emotions. But getting involved with someone else, even just for a night, is not the answer. It would be a selfish deed, because no matter how hard you try to justify it, all you would be doing is using another person – not healing yourself.

Your unhealthy relationship is over, and it’s time to heal yourself even if you don’t know where to start from. It’s okay to be angry, but you need to channel that anger; you cannot simply dismiss it, because that is what would happen if you were to engage in one-night stands – you may think it would help, but it would only be a numbing, useless harmful practice that definitely would not assist your recovery. You need to address your anger, and direct it at the cheater. Don’t fall into a trap, do not harbour that vicious feeling unless you somehow physically or mentally contributed to bringing that into your relationship. I want to explain what I mean by that. Did you really, deep down in your heart, know that the relationship was nearing its end, but couldn’t voice your emotions and say you were not happy out loud? Does this entail that you consequently stopped to actively participate in the relationship? The only thing you knew was that your partner had stopped caring and all you wanted was to get that person back. If you’re angry, throw something, scream or watch a lot of mindless TV. Reality shows are good for this. I wouldn’t even recommend you tell your friends about what happened yet, because what they are going to do is bash your cheater, but that would not benefit you at all. You have to be like a turtle, with its head tucked in its shell – wait a little longer, there’s no rush to get out of that shell. 

That shell is your shelter, it’s where you can’t get hurt, where you can let your feelings flow freely. It’s where your heart and mind fight. And the battle is long. The heart wants you to find any excuse to call the cheater and to take the blame for this situation. The mind tells you it’s okay to move on, it tells you that you knew what was happening but you didn’t do anything to solve the problem. The mind tells you that it tried to warn you, that suggested you get out, but you would rather listen to sugarcoated lies than to the bitter truth. This is a fierce battle, but that’s all it is – the war is yet to be won. Stay right there in that turtle shell and let you heart and mind battle it out until you can declare a winner on your terms. When you are ready, you will slowly come out and face the outside world. It won’t be easy. The first thing you might do is just taking a shower or zapping from channel to channel on the television. The point is that you do something, no matter how insignificant it may seem. And if doing those little things is not enough and you feel like going back inside your shell, that’s perfectly okay. You just weren’t ready as you thought, but don’t beat yourself up, just keep trying and every time you will get a little farther out of the shell. One thing you should be able to do before you are completely out of your shell is thinking about that person without bursting into tears or getting so angry that it makes you want to do something stupid. You have to be able to say the person’s name and look at your situation for what it really was. When you decide to get out of your shell, it doesn’t mean you are necessarily whole again, but it does mean that you will survive. Breaking up, for whatever reason, is hard, but it has happened or will happen to each of us. What matters is what you learn, not just from surviving the breakup but from the relationship itself. There are lessons to be learned from every situation, you just have recognize each situation and act upon it. 

The Art of Cheating is the first blog post you should read before getting to this point.

The next blog post will be about facing the world as a survivor.

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Retirement: Introverts vs Extroverts

Retirement: we can’t wait for it. We count the days, the months, and in my case, the years. I didn’t have a monthly calendar; I wanted a big yearly calendar so I could see each day as it went by. When we are young, we start thinking about retirement when it cuts into our activities at night. It’s hard as hell to go to work after partying into the night. You end up dragging yourself to work, only for the boss to yell, “You have to stay late because you’re late!” The years go by, and retirement is front and center in conversations at the water cooler. Retirement is the reward after spending years having a boss to tell you what to do. 

We can’t wait for the retirement party and the well wishers wishing you good luck. Then one day, it’s time. You gather your belongings, and off into the retirement world you go. 

We hear all the time about the money aspect of retirement (“you need x amount of money to retire”), but we don’t hear a lot about the mental aspect of retiring. Retirement is great for the extroverted person who has lots of friends beyond work. It’s great if you are a social person who likes to go out on a regular basis. Retirement might not be so good for the introverted person whose only social outlet is work, whose coworkers are their only friends, and who at the end of a work day is going home to a lonely house. That person who can’t wait for the next work day should maybe pump those retirement brakes. The retiree who lines up at the bus stop for that trip to the casino could just be lonely, and that is their only way to be around people. The casino-bound retiree might have never gambled a day in his life, but sitting on a bus surrounded by people is better than sitting at home all alone. You can usually tell these people because they start a conversation with anybody who takes that seat next to him/her. This does have ramifications because gambling can put a retiree on a fixed income in a financial crisis. 

The main conversations we have while working are about work; we talk shop. When we retire, that conversation stops; you aren’t in the loop anymore. The people you worked with could have moved on, and there are new people at the job whom you don’t know. One day, you realize the telephone is no longer ringing from the people you worked with, so you call. The conversation is strained; these’s a lot of silence. This is when you realize that your relationship with your work friends is over. For the extroverted person, this is no big deal because they have an outside life, but for introverts, this could be a horrible realization. You think, “What should I do now?” You clean the house on Monday, you clean the house on Tuesday, you clean the house on Wednesday, you clean the house on Thursday, you clean the house Friday, you clean the house on Saturday, and you clean the house on Sunday. The house is white-glove clean, but with nothing else to do, you start the ritual all over again. The next week, you watch every show you had meant to watch but couldn’t because you were working. There are times you wish you never retired because this isn’t all people make it out to be. 

Retirement is hard on the introverted person. If you know someone who was a introvert at work, more than likely that’s not going to change with retirement. It’s not some much that the introvert wants to be alone as that the person has to get comfortable in a new setting. If they start to go to the casino, the first time might be awkward, but as he/she goes more often, their comfort level increases, and so do their interactions with other people. The conversations might be casino-related; for introverts, that could be all that’s needed to make themselves comfortable. 
I’m just using the casino as a example, but it could be senior groups, YMCA programs, cruises, anything that can that bring about social interaction. 

Retirees have enough to worry about, like money (unless you’re rich) and whether Social Security will be around for their entire lifetime. Money is a big issue because it comes monthly instead of biweekly or weekly. You have to stretch the dollar to last for a month, and with the price of food, there’s no room for goodies, just the necessities. Your savings start dwindling because the price of everything keeps going up and your check goes down faster. There are also more health issues as you age, and dealing with those alone is never good. You begin to realize that death is a closer reality than life because the people you know are passing away at an alarming rate. There is an overwhelming sense of loneliness if you’re an introvert.

Retirement is great if you’re an extroverted person who is very sociable, but if you are an introvert, think about it. You should prepare not just financially, but also mentally. You need to think about what you are going to do, and start doing that before you retire. If you don’t have a hobby while working, it doesn’t just come about when you stop working. Start pursuing that hobby while you’re still working. Join a club, or better yet, create a club. Join a group to get the feel of what it’s about. You should visit family, but don’t make yourself a pest. Take care of the grandkids until they get on your nerves. The point is to plan ahead and be honest in your assessment of yourself and what you’re capable of doing. There’s only so much house cleaning to do.

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Pull Off The Label

We are not cans of vegetables in a store that require a label to be stacked in the same area. We are people, so why do we need so many labels? There are so many labels that seem to define people that I’m starting to think that it’s made up. I’m black, female, gay, and married, but none of those define me just like those words or similar words don’t define you. One of the reasons you label vegetables is so that when you open them, you know what’s inside. Labeling people tells you nothing about the person inside. Labeling is very broad way of saying “This is me”, but why do you need to say that? It would be so nice if we could pull off the labels and people were just that, a person with a name for identification, and that’s it. “I am Anita” – that’s my identification, and that has nothing to do with who I am inside. We have got too hung up on these labels without knowing the person who is assigned a label. When you meet someone, you should look at the person, not if he is gay, straight, transgender, or anything else, just the person. We have a superficial world that looks too much at looks before seeing the person inside the body. It doesn’t matter if you are beautiful or ugly as hell if what’s inside should count more than what you look like and what label should be attached to your person. Why is it so important that you give yourself a label or a label is given to you? Does that label tell the person about you? I hope not because this world is worse off than I thought if all we are is a bunch of people trying to fit in a label like string beans in a can. When I was a kid, I saw these two people walking down the street. They were gay, I assumed. I wondered why people can’t just love who they wanted, as they were not hurting anyone. I learned as I got older that labels are used as a way to hurt people, and labels are used to define people as a certain sexual being. Again, why do you need a label to describe your sexuality? If you’re transgender, great but I rather know the person inside that transgender body. I don’t care if you’re transgender because that’s not what drew you to me. It’s that person inside that body that I want to get to know and love. I’m just saying I would rather just know your name. This doesn’t just apply to gay people but straight people as well. I don’t care if you’re straight, I just want to know your name and get to know that person inside. We are all different inside, and that is what makes us special. If you were to put all the Anita’s in the world together, we would still be different because of the person inside: there is no need to label that Anita as straight or that Anita as gay, what is the point? I really hope one day that people will stop with the labeling because it’s a false way to define someone.  It would be so much better if we pulled off the labels and just looked at the person. Maybe that would make the world a better place. It might help with all this divisiveness that is going on. It might help people to truly understand the next person without making assumptions. It could put love in the world and get rid of some of the hatred we have for certain groups of labeled people. Please take the time to pull the label off and look at the person inside before you judge. The next time someone says I’m pansexual, ask them who are they really inside without the label.

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No Shame in Going to a Trade School


For some kids, the stress of whether to go to college is a pressure cooker waiting to explode, especially if they do not want to go. College is not for every kid, but parents often put their ambitions for their children on them. We are well aware of the extent some parents go to to get their kids into a university. Is college for the kid or for the parents? There was a time when the military was the go-to source of jobs for kids, especially African American kids. Parents looked at the military as a way out of the ghetto, which could eat their kids up and spit them out on the nearest-drug infested corner. That seems to have changed somewhat as military standards have changed. It wasn’t so much that parents didn’t want their kids to enlist; rather, it’s more that kids weren’t being accepted so readily.

There is an alternative out there that most parents fail to push, and that’s work that’s done with your hands. These are the construction workers, electricians, and plumbers, just to name a few. These jobs offer good salaries with much less cost to the student. I believe it’s how these types are jobs are perceived that makes them seem on the surface less important than the professions of a doctor or lawyer. Doesn’t it sound so much better to say “my child is a lawyer” than “my child is a garbage man”?

There are many kids out here who have no desire to attend college, but feel that they have no other option, so they go. Years ago, getting an associate’s degree was a sign that you’d made it, but that is no longer true. You need a bachelor’s degree, and with some occupations a master’s degree, to have a chance of getting that high-paying job. There are also cases where high-paying jobs still elude students because they haven’t scored high enough for Corporate America to even consider them. For some of our next-generation kids, high school is all they can see; they see nothing beyond that. It’s a strange thought that when you were a kid, you wanted to be a doctor, a lawyer, anything that was glamorized on television. When the drug craze came about, television started to glamorize that quick money, and then kids started to go in that direction. I’m not saying this happens to every kid, but enough kids get drawn into easy money and a flashy lifestyle. Then the technology craze hit, and now we have some kids sitting in front of a screen before they can even talk. In a sense, they are raised by screens. They have little if any ambition and college, is a definite no-no. 

My grandson is in the eleventh grade, and I often ask him, “What are you interested in”? Because everything I suggest is a NO! When he was small, he had dreams; what happened to them? He isn’t a bad student, but is an average student who won’t be getting into any Ivy League school. That’s OK because there’s an alternative: a trade school. A trade school occupation is something to be proud of; it’s like building a house, something you put your back into. In this type of profession, you can look at your hands, and see the ability to take something from nothing and made it real. There are trade school jobs that aren’t labor-intense, like web developer or dental hygienist, that a person can learn to do, and they can be proud of what they have accomplished. 

Parents, I think that you have to be honest in evaluating your child. Don’t try to make your child a college student when they have shown no desire, or when they’re just barely making it out of high school. It should be about giving them choices, and trade schools should be among the options that are discussed. I checked online, and these are some of the best jobs for trade school graduates: 1. Elevator Installer/repairer, medium salary $77,806 2. Radiation Therapist, medium salary $69,504 3. Web Developer, medium salary $58,448 4. Diagnostic Medical Sonographer, $55,106, 5. Electricians,$52,527. These salaries aren’t too shabby for a person not going to college. 
College is great for students who are going for themselves, not for their parents. However, college often involves a lot of debt, and offers no guarantees that graduates will be employed in their chosen field after they’ve sweated for multiple years to earn their degree. A trade school involves a lot less debt, and offers better chances of employment are better in one’s chosen field. Don’t sell your child short; give him/her every opportunity to succeed, even when college isn’t in the equation.

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My Secret Is Out

There’s this concept online called crowdfunding. In basic language, crowdfunding is a group of people that buy into another individual’s/company’s idea. I mean buy as in money and buy as in you like what they are selling. I actually can’t tell you how I got involved, but believe me, it had to be something I saw online that made me say, “Wow!” I was working then, though money was tight, but what I saw made me say, “I’ve got to have this!” The problem was my spouse, who wasn’t my spouse at the time, but we were dating and living together. I knew that spending money on a watch was not going to fly. Yes, the first geeky item I pledged to was a watch. This watch connected to your phone and you got notifications. This was before smart watches were the rage. What I did was to first talk up the watch by saying how it could keep me from missing messages on my commute from New York to New Jersey. Well, that didn’t work, so I did what I knew was fail proof: it was an early birthday present to myself. While I was wheeling and dealing with my spouse on this watch, I went to a newfound website of geek items and saw another watch. This time, not only could I get notifications but I could talk into it. Dick Tracy here I come! Now, I’m talking about two watches. Well, I only have one birthday, so how could I get her to see things from my point of view? Nope, it wasn’t going to happen, so I did the unthinkable and just kept my big mouth shut. The website that had grabbed my attention that I was not mentioning was Kickstarter. 
Kickstarter

Kickstarter
was started in April 2009 by Perry Chen, Yancey Strickler and Charles Adler. The Kickstarter headquarters is located in New York City. Kickstarter is a very user friendly site for project owners and backers. Kickstarter responds to questions and problems about their site very quickly and you can communicate with the project owner by clicking on the comments section or emailing him/her through the website. The comments area is also a place to interact, not only with the project owner, but with other backers, during the course of the project.
Kickstarter has a global community of people from more than 220 countries and territories. Roughly 35% of successfully funded projects now come from outside the United States, as do 45% of backers. Together, these backers and creators use Kickstarter to reach across borders and shape culture into what they want it to be, rather than accepting it for what it is. And as ideas from different cultures collide with one another, they inspire new conversations, creative approaches, and cross-cultural connections.
 

Kickstarter Project Manager 
I will discuss the technology area of Kickstarter; however, there are many types of projects that you can back, such as films, music, and books. The Kickstarter site enables people to discover and back as many projects as they believe will become a reality. When a person, or groups of people, decide to start a project on Kickstarter they must first build a project page, which includes a video with a description explaining their project. The next step for the project owner is to provide information about their budget and a timeline from beginning to end of the project. The project owner must then decide what kind of rewards they will offer backers, such as a choice of item color or engraving the item with the project name and year. These rewards are given when the project funding reaches certain milestones. Project owners have to keep in mind that they pay for all of the rewards offered to backers. When project owners think about the funds necessary to bring their project to fruition, they must consider everything because Kickstarter will not let their project become a reality if the funding goal is not met. A very important part of the project is promotion. A project needs active promotion because a project no one knows about will never get funded. Kickstarter’s fee is 5%, with an additional 3 to 5% for processing payments. If the project owner doesn’t meet their funding goal, they owe nothing.

Kickstarter Backers
There are different tier amounts that a backer can pledge. When a backer pledges early there is usually a perk from the project owner as a way of thanking a backer for coming aboard early. The different pledge tiers not only tell you the item, but an estimated month and year that you will receive the item. The shipping information will also be listed in each tier box, along with any accessories that might be given. Once he/she has met the project funding level, the project owner will give their backers updates as the project develops through each stage. Backers like to know they’ve made a wise decision in backing a project and hate it when shipping has to be pushed back time after time. My experience with Kickstarter is that projects are always pushed back for different reasons. The project owners try to give realistic shipping estimates, but often a project of this magnitude is new to many of them and they are not prepared for the problems that arise. You, the backer, have to be aware that there are also scam artist that will go through the motions of creating a project, but once funding is met and they receive their money, you never hear from them again. There is really no recourse for backers when a project owner takes the money and doesn’t fulfill his/her part of the deal. Kickstarter backing is partially about being first to get an item that no one might know about or have even envisioned. As I stated, not all projects make it to the backers. An example of this was a watch that I pledged for my daughter. It was supposed to be the thinnest watch out in 2013. The company wasn’t able to make the watch because they encountered too many hurdles that they weren’t prepared for. I recently received a letter informing us that after liquidating all of their assets, there was no money to give to backers

Some might think this is throwing money away because these projects aren’t cheap, and if a project fails you can’t get your money back. I think of it like this: It’s no riskier than the lottery or going to the casino. You never know when you’ll hit the jackpot. There is a certain rush you get as the months go by waiting for your reward to make it from the project owner’s vision to you.

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The Art of Cheating

Cheating, similar to a painting, needs all of the pieces to come together to create the perfect picture. There are three people involved in cheating: the cheater, the person being cheated on, and last but not least, the person being cheated with. That basically sums up the triangle of cheating. I would guess that most of us have been in one part of the triangle or another at some point. The person being cheated on and the person being cheated are just like an isosceles triangle in that they are equal in the hurt that can come from a cheater. 

There are signs; however, it’s a matter of whether you, the person being cheated on, wants to acknowledge the signs or not. There are always very subtle signs. It’s a sign that if you blink too fast, it will be gone. Cheaters very seldom in the beginning of a new relationship do obvious things that are easy for you to pick up on, but they do unobvious things that are small, so you have to be observant. If you have been in a long-term relationship that is meaningful to you, then you know your other half. You know if the person stops kissing you when he/she leaves the room or comes home from work. There may be times when that kiss that usually comes every day starts becoming every other day or every two days. You understand now what I mean by subtle? 

I know it may be hard to think of the person who is being cheated with as a causality in this triangle as much as the person who is being cheated on, but I believe he or she is also a victim. There are a lot of people who feel that the person who is being cheated with should bear the brunt of this triangle because that person should have just said no to the relationship. That person is looked upon as a third wheel for entering into a relationship that was solid. Actually, I guess it wasn’t as solid as it was thought to be. I argue that this person could not have infiltrated your relationship without there being some kind of hint that said it was “OK”. Again, the hint is usually very subtle. It doesn’t matter who puts out the hint – the cheater or the person being cheated with – it takes only that small acknowledgment of acceptance to start cheating.

The cheater is the big fish because both of the other parties of the triangle are being held together by this person. The cheater is not only cheating on the person that he/she has the direct relationship with but also the person he/she is cheating with. Yes, the person being cheated with has as much invested in this triangle as the cheater and his/her partner. The cheater is a bandit who is stealing feelings and emotions from the other two people in the triangle. Have you ever noticed that the drama that comes with cheating becomes stronger once it’s out in the open. The cheater and the side person’s relationship becomes closer, and this is because they have a common denominator, which is the dislike for or uncertainty of the person being cheated on. That common denominator pushes the cheater and the person being cheated with closer and closer until they are so close that they truly believe they are in love. I often wonder, without that common denominator, could that side relationship work? 

The triangle doesn’t care if you are straight, gay, or a martian; its all about you and how you treat someone. The person being cheated on has to dig down deep in their emotions to confront the cheater. I know it is easier said than done. I really believe that confronting the cheater as soon as the hint is in view is what should be done. No, don’t blink and hope it goes away. No, don’t try to do more until actions from the cheater match the words that come out of his/her mouth. The longer it takes to confront the cheater, the harder it will be. That’s a fact. You need to get the information, resources and finances together and just put all of that away somewhere for when you need it. The person being cheated with, it would be very easy to say just say no, but I know it’s not always that easy, especially as you get closer and closer to the cheater. I think you already know it’s wrong to get in between any sort of relationship, but there are times when the cheater presents such a good view of why this is ok that it’s like being hit by a Mack Truck. It happens before you know you’ve been hit. I’m definitely not saying that it’s ok to be the third wheel in the triangle. What I’m saying is that there could be a good reason why that person is involved in a relationship. For the cheater, there are so many reasons why he/she cheats, from you can’t cook to you can’t satisfy him/her. These things get ballooned in the creator’s mind once the cheater feels that there is no way to fix the relationship. Or it could just be that the person finds the need to have more than one person, like a polygamist. Even if the cheater comes back, it will never be like it was before, when you laughed at the same things or snuggled in bed watching a movie. The trust is gone, and, once gone, trust is hard to get back. It’s hard to forget that all of that occurred when the relationship grew from two to three people. 

You, the person being cheated on, has to be honest and open with yourself. Can you look past the hurt? Can you believe his/her words that come out of his/her mouth? Can you release the heartache that comes with having a third person in the relationship? The person being cheated with thinks that once the cheater is out of the relationship, they can be together. That’s a bunch of poop. You might lose out just like the person being cheated on because you will, in fact, get that title. I don’t get it. Just because the cheater is out of a relationship doesn’t mean you will be the chosen one. It just means you were there and were used to break up a relationship, and that’s all it means, nothing more or nothing less.

Honest communication is the only way to stop the train wreck that will come from cheating. This honest communication has to occur before the third person is brought into the relationship; otherwise, honest communication becomes lying communication. There will be times when honest communication will lead to a relationship breaking up because you may find that you two have grown apart or maybe one of you has fallen out of love. It might happen that breaking the bond between the two of you is the best thing and maybe neither of you can see it at that very moment, but down the line you both will wish that you could say to the other person, “Thank you for being honest with me.” 

I hope that anyone who is currently in a relationship and is not happy, that you stop and talk to your partner/spouse before things get sloppy from involving a third person.

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My Dog Hates To Poop

GG

Mason


I have two Shih Tzus, GG and Mason. While Mason is a pooping machine, GG hates to poop. I realized when GG was a puppy that she is a very stubborn dog. I had to leave the house at 3am and would put food and water down for her, and when I returned home—usually around 6pm—her food and water looked just as I left it. When I came in the house, she would look at me with her big eyes and turn her head. I knew she was mad, but I had no choice; I had to work. I did work at home at lot of the time, but when I came home that was my punishment: she ignored me. Once, I had to go to Boston for a conference. I had to board her, and after inspecting and checking the credentials, I settled on Best Friends for boarding. I loved that place. I paid for her to go on a shopping spree in their store, ice cream, one-on-one playtime and bedtime stories. I wanted her to be as comfortable as possible for the 5 days she would be there. I would call every day to find out she would eat but wouldn’t poop. I was scared if she didn’t poop soon she might get sick, so I cut my trip short. When I picked her up I felt so guilty that I cooked her a steak which she gobbled up. Who wouldn’t? She still wouldn’t poop. The next day I was ready to take her to the vet when, while walking, she stepped down on her leash to let me know that was as much walking as she was going to do, and so we turned around to come home when she finally pooped. It was big dog poop. I mean German Shepherd amount. I felt like jumping for joy. I noticed that pooping for GG is a matter of how she feels. GG is 17 years old and she is defiant in some things—and pooping is one of those things. When I take her out, I have to give her some sense of privacy. She squats and I look up into the sky. If I don’t, she squats and just looks at me with those big eyes of hers and nothing comes out. I learned this after many years of trying to figure out why she would poop sometimes and not others; it was a long process it get to that point. With GG being an old girl now, I am fanatic about her pooping because it is harder for her to smell and the amount of food she eats varies. I have tried Metamucil, but getting that in her was not working at all. I would find the Metamucil on the floor when I thought she had swallowed it. The next thing I tried was pumpkin. I mixed it with her boiled chicken, and for a while it worked, but then she got smart. She would smell Mason’s food and, because it didn’t have any pumpkin, she would try to eat his food. The next thing I tried (and still do) is smearing pumpkin all around Mason’s plate so his plate would smell the same as hers. This worked for a while, but she got wise again. She now smells his plate and goes back to her plate and only eats the boiled chicken pieces that have no pumpkin; the rest she throws on the floor next to her plate. It’s frustrating that on a daily basis I have to figure out what will and won’t work. I keep a WeeWee pad on the floor so when the weather is bad or I can’t take her out, she could go; however, she doesn’t like going in the house and would rather hold it until she can go out.

Mason on the other hand poops like a caulking gun; what goes in comes out in the next hour. It’s unbelievable that a 17lb dog could have so much poop or pee in him. I mean, he can pee outside until nothing comes out and come in the house and pee again. It’s ridiculous. When Mason finishes eating, he heads straight to the WeeWee pad and poops. I wonder how the food can digest so fast that it comes out after the last bite. I don’t know whether the fact he eats like a vacuum cleaner has anything to do with it. Mason does not chew his food, he just sucks it down. While GG hates going in the house, Mason will go anywhere at any time, sometimes three or four times a day. We, after 3 couches, have had to wrap him up before we go broke with our peeing fountain of a dog. 

They are definitely two different personalities of dogs. GG is more independent, and Mason is more of a baby. There is a 6 year difference in their age, and Mason seems like most boys: slow to learn. I think by me not being home, she learned to deal with things like thunderstorms. They don’t bother her at all, and we’re in Florida where some of the thunderstorms are very loud. Mason has great anxiety from thunderstorms; he shakes, poops and runs around chasing his tail. We tried everything like turning up the television and closing the blinds; nothing works because Mason can tell bad weather from miles away. He’s our weather dog. When we see him starting to get anxious, we know there is bad weather someplace because he picked up on it. I would check my phone when he started getting anxious and, sure enough, there was a lightening strike 5 miles away. He never fails in his weather forecasting. 

I’ll keep trying ways to keep GG going, and it is not easy. She has started something new recently of pooping only when I let her wake up on her own. If I wake her up, she is grouchy and she just walks around outside and steps down on her leash meaning, “That’s it, take me back home.” She’s an old girl now, and I let her do whatever she wants because I don’t know how much time we have left together. She’s in good health except she can’t hear so I’m grateful for that. If anyone has any more ideas of things I can try, please let me know.

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Bullying Straight Up No Chaser


Think back to when you were a child, I bet there is a fair amount of people who were bullied. We seem to forget that bullying is nothing new. Bullying is about power, it’s about making the bully feel good as much as it’s about making the bullied child feel hopeless and worthless. I’m still trying to wrap my head around the fact that in this age of technology bullying has so much power that it could make a child commit suicide. The computer is not the problem, the problem is that people hide behind a screen and feel entitled and empowered by this sort of protection to say whatever they will – their words are the real issue. I’m one of those who don’t believe it’s guns that kill people, rather it’s the person behind the gun that’s the problem. Growing up, when you were bullied you told your parents, you had a fight or you just hid behind the other children to stay out of sight. Now though, virtual words typed on a keyboard have so much strength that they make a child feel there is nothing else they can do but tie something around their neck and hang from the highest point they can get to. Have we birthed children that have no backbone? Have we neglected our duties as parents so much that we can’t see the signs? Are we not able to hear our children calling us for help? I believe that technology takes away the ability for children to learn how to socialize. These days, when you look at kids, even when they are in a group, their eyes are constantly on their phones so they don’t really socialize anymore. This new generation of kids take it as the norm to be isolated rather than to socialize and make friends with their peers.  

There must be signs that parents don’t see when their child gets to the point where they feel hopeless and alone in their fight. I imagine the signs are there but they are hidden behind a façade of happiness. Maybe they try to be happy. If they are introverted within their family circle, they all of a sudden become extroverted outside of it. A child who doesn’t talk much becomes loquacious, whereas a talker becomes suddenly quiet. There are always signs, but we are missing them because we are so wrapped up in our own lives. No-one can accept the fact that an adult has contributed to the death of their child. Nevertheless, it’s time us parents take some responsibility for sticking a phone or a tablet into our children’s hands as soon as they can hold them. It seems like phones and tablets have become the new pacifier, one that takes away some of the parental duties that kids need the most and which should come in the form of interaction. Interaction is very, very important for a child’s growth as it gives them the confidence to deal with all types of situations. Interaction is a confidence booster that the new generations lack more and more and this lack means that parents see their children but they do not really know them. The distance between parents and children is wide and when parents realize what is going on with their children it is too late. The children have buried themselves into so much grief that pulling them back out would require a miracle. Miracles do happen, but how often? Not too often.

I truly believe it’s our duty as parents to ensure that in the future technology loses some of the power it has gained so far. We must teach our children exactly what the power of words is. Children must be told of experiences that parents have had, so they know their folks can relate. Parents must find the time to interact with their children on a regularly basis and tell them they understand their challenges and are open to discussing them together. Is that going to be easy? No, it won’t be a simple task, but you have to keep trying. Children have to know their parents won’t be judgmental, but understanding, so they can try to find a solution together. It’s easy to take away their computers or monitor the time they spend online, but that doesn’t mean they will get enough attention from you. Where is the interaction? Parents, you must be ready to bare your soul to your child and keep trying over and over again. A child needs to feel all the attention they feel they aren’t getting from you. A example of what I’m talking about is when your child comes home from school and you ask “How was school?”. You don’t just settle for “Okay”, that is not good enough because what does that tell you? Nothing at all. It will take time and you will get frustrated, but you have to keep trying, without pushing too hard. Don’t give up. I just don’t want to read about another child taking their life over some words they found on a computer screen. Remember that bullying can only go as far as your child lets it and it’s really up to you to equip them with the tools to fight back.

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Unique Ways to Find A Spouse

 Times have truly changed when it comes to dating and marriage. It used to be that you went to church functions or you met people through friends. The most popular, and still popular, Match.com is a leader in bringing people together. I can personally tell you that I met my spouse on Match.com and we’ve been together for 12 years and married for 3 of those years. The computers age changed everything. It gave you the ability to meet people all over the world. The new computer age didn’t just give you the ability to meet people in different countries, but it also allows you to meet people in your area that you maybe would have never met. Television has taken the step to meet people even farther, with shows like 90 Day Fiancé, 90 Day Fiancé Before The 90 Days, and 90 Day Fiancé The Other Way, and then there’s Love After Lockup, a show on Wetv, which shows another way to meet with the end result being marriage. These shows may seem crazy and you might just be saying, “Not me,” but these shows are uniting many couples for marriage.

90 Day Fiancé premiered in 2014

90 Day Fiancé is a TLC series about an American who goes across the country to meet the person he/she hopes to marry. The American has usually visited websites that are specific to what they want in a person, such as a Cuban dating site to meet a Cuban woman. The couple has just 90 days after getting a K-1 visa to decide whether or not to marry. The K-1 visa allows a U.S. citizen to bring his/her fiancé to the United States. The couples get to know each other mainly through FaceTime and texting. The couples are often of different ages and a few couples have a 20-year separation in age. They do get paid to let cameras into their lives from the time they start communicating through their whole courtship process. As noted previously, their communication is mainly through FaceTime and text messaging. What a way to get to know someone. The participants in the show are paid $1000 to $1500 per episode and $2500 if they appear in the tell all show at the end of the season. That sure seems like a cheap amount to put your emotions and life out there for public scrutiny. There is a 90 Day Fiancé casting group on Facebook for you to apply and get more information. You can go to Auditionsfree.com to get information about casting. The person going to the foreign country has to pay for traveling to the foreign country and the K-1 visa. This is not a cheap way to find love. The show does give you a look at the way other countries’ values in love and marriage are dealt with as well as the foreign person trying to understand the American ways. 

Love After Lockup premiered in 2018

Love After Lockup is another unique way to find the person of your dreams to marry. It brings together one person in prison and one person out in the free world. The person not in prison writes to or responds to letters from the inmate. It is through these letters that the communication grows into wanting to marry the person in prison and wait for him/her to be released from prison. The camera follows the couples as the prisoners are released and adjust to their new freedom. We get to watch the ups and downs of dealing with the prisoner’s restrictions and learning of how to maneuver the free life. The person who is not in prison usually takes care of all the prisoner’s needs, both in prison and once they get out. The participants are paid $2000 per episode and if they appear on Life After Lockup they get $3000 per episode. That’s not too shabby for a convict just getting out of prison. If you would like more information email to: LOVEAFTERLOCKUPCASTING@GMAIL.COM.

These ways of finding love might seem too far out to imagine, but to a person that’s looking for love, these shows offer a viable alternative. The participants in both shows are often of different races, religions, ethnicities, and ages. There hasn’t been a gay participant in either show, but I’m sure it’s just a matter of time. These types of shows highlight the fact that finding love is not easy, but some people will do just about anything to find that perfect somebody.

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Fibromyalgia Sucks

I am 62 years old and have had fibromyalgia for the last 20 years. Fibromyalgia is an autoimmune disease. When I was first diagnosed, I was told it wasn’t lupus and no other information except to see a rheumatologist. That was the beginning of a life I didn’t want. Then it was test after test and so many different medicines that it made my head spin. One day, about 15 years ago, I was out walking on my lunch break in New York and as I was walking, both of my feet started hurting. I mean, they hurt like I was walking on glass. I struggled to get back to my job. I went to see the rheumatologist and my pain was given a name: fibromyalgia. I was somewhat relieved because now maybe I could get a medicine that would help me. I was wrong. I now know that I was having a flareup, which made diagnosing it much easier. It was tired of being a medical experiment. The years went on. Sometimes I could take the 90 minute ride to work, but there were plenty of times that I couldn’t motivate myself to get out of bed. It was a daily struggle. I got married and there were many times we would have to cancel plans because I just couldn’t go. I stopped making plans. It was better to be spontaneous. Fibromyalgia doesn’t just affect you; it takes a toll on each person that is close to you. My spouse is understanding, but I still feel bad because she didn’t sign up for this, being in the house most of the time. It got to the point that I just didn’t have the energy to go commute any longer, so I retired. She retired two years later and we moved to Florida. I thought Florida would be better because the temperature stays constantly hot. I would have a flareup every time the seasons changed in New York, so Florida seemed like a good idea. Wrong move. I forgot about the humidity, so I’m still in the house most of the time. I can’t take the heat. She tells me it’s okay, but I feel even worse now because we are both retired and we can’t do the traveling we wanted to do when we retired. There is no cure for this disease, so the most I can hope for is what I have right now. I take things one day at a time. When I feel good, we get out and just enjoy being out. It’s wonderful.

Fibromyalgia is an autoimmune disease that causes widespread muscle pain and tenderness. There are other symptoms that are also associated with it such as fatigue, low energy, trouble sleeping, headaches, and tingling in your hands and feet. Fibromyalgia usually affects both sides of your body, such as both of your arms or feet. This is one of the ways I know it’s not lupus, which I was diagnosed with later. 

Treatment for fibromyalgia once it is diagnosed is hit and miss. There are drugs for the pain, such as hydrocodone. There is medical marijuana, which I now use. The doctors here in Florida try to wean you off of pain medicine, with the marijuana taking the place of dosages of the pain medicine. My problem with medical marijuana is sometimes the marijuana is good and sometimes it seems like I’m just throwing money away. Tai Chi is supposed to help because of the gentle movement on the body. I tried yoga once and was in bed for two weeks from all of the poses that I put my body in. I have tried going to the gym many times and each time I end up in bed with a bad flareup. A flareup is when the disease gets ahold of my body and beats it up. I still try to exercise though, but very slowly and I time myself so I can gradually work myself up to at least 30 minutes of cardio. I prefer exercising at home so I can shower and lay down right after without driving anyplace. The plus about exercising at home is that I don’t have to get dressed, so I can look any way I want.

Relationships are hard. I know how I feel when I can’t do something. It’s very frustrating. But for my spouse I feel worse. We haven’t been to any support groups, but now I feel we should. We both need support to understand the feelings we have when a flareup occurs, which as I’ve gotten older, is more frequent. It’s important that you and your partner sit down and talk about everything about this disease. It takes a lot of understanding and patience. Thankfully, she has shown both. It might not always be this way, but for now, I’m just happy that she loves me and takes up the slack when I can’t do my part. I sometimes get mad and lash out at her for no reason whatsoever except I mad at this disease and she’s here. She’s learned to just let me be and I calm down after a while.

You know how your body feels and never let a doctor tell you it’s nothing. Fibromyalgia is hard to diagnose, and after seeing doctor after doctor, you might start to think that what you are feeling is not real. I went through that in the beginning, with doctor after doctor and trying this medicine and that medicine. I started to wonder if I was losing my mind. There is a doctor out there that can help you. You can only do what you can do. Don’t push yourself because that only makes things worse. Be good to yourself.

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Stop – Stand Still – Raise Your Arms High above Your Head


We are in a crisis in this country. A crisis that involves our young African American boys. What is happening with our young boys is a problem that doesn’t seemed to be addressed by the people that are supposed to serve and protect. How do we protect that group of males when we can’t get an acknowledgement that there is a problem? How do we protect our young males when they can get shot whether they comply with police or not? What you see that’s happening in the streets is a war. A war that is between police and African American males that doesn’t seem to get any better, generation after generation. How do we get more color to our police departments when all you see and hear are negative words? There is nothing for African American boys to strive for in law enforcement. There is nothing that calls out for them to become part of the solution; a solution that as of now still eludes them. I have three grandsons and I fear that one day one of them might be stopped by a policeman. How should I tell them they should act when there are trigger happy cops that only see the color of their skin not the person inside that skin? There was a consensus in African American neighborhoods that to keep our boys safe they are taught not to run from cops, just stand still; don’t touch a pocket, don’t pull up your pants, just stand there. That is no longer what we can teach them because the wrong cop in the wrong mood will still get them killed. What can we say now? I’m not saying white boys don’t get stopped or shot, but the situation for them isn’t plastered in the media as frequently as what goes on with African American boys. Yes, I will admit that white kids are more involved in mass killing, however this is of their own doing. They aren’t being killed for sometimes doing absolutely nothing. That’s an apples and oranges comparison. Some will blame it on parents; that African American boys aren’t taught any better, they aren’t civilized, they aren’t disciplined, they have no respect for authority. The list can go on and on. I have heard people say that they deserve it because they weren’t going to do anything with their lives anyway. Cops these days are judge, jury and executioner because of the power that they have. What chance do my grandsons or any boys have when they can’t fight against a society that barely acknowledges their existence? Are African American cops so brainwashed by their white brothers in law that they forget where they came from? How do African American cops stand there and not do something to instill fairness in the very communities that raised them? Do African American cops just want to turn their backs on their brothers and sisters of color? It has become obvious that right now, at this time, when generations of children of all colors are supposed to be color blind, that this is not true. This generation of kids don’t stand a chance of making any change when they still see that the color of your skin still matters in this country. If they want to get ahead, they have to follow the status quo and not buck the system. This system has been passed down through so many generations that knowing anything different is a time well forgotten. Is there a solution? Yes; that solution is getting mental help for those cops that seem like they are racist. Racism comes out sooner or later in everyone in different forms. We have to reprogram our thinking. That will take a very long time. It won’t be easy but I see no other way. It has to start now. We can’t wait. I don’t want any of my grandsons in the newspaper obituary section because some cop didn’t see who they were, just the color of their skin. We have to do better. Not just parents, but this whole country. A country were immigrants flock but can’t police their own policeman. It’s sad, very sad. What will I tell my grandsons now if stopped? Stop – stand still and raise your arms high above your head. It might not change the outcome but I don’t know what else to say.

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Is A Like Really A Like?


When you like someone that means you like being around the person and entertain the same thoughts and values of that person. The word like seems to have grown feet and marched in a new direction with the computer age. A like in the computer age seems to meet those same values as before, however the importance of a like has now grown in meaning. When you like someone’s website, you are giving that person the feeling that what they say has value to you. The person that you are liking gets a euphoric feeling of success in that they have reached someone with their thoughts. The more people that click on the like button, the more people you feel have accepted and agreed with you. The number of likes lets all that view your website know how other people have enjoyed your content. If there are no likes or very little likes to your website it makes it harder to get the next person to engage in your website. It is as if the number of likes validates your popularity to the public. When we put something out there that we want confirmation on, there is no better way than to get likes. You may not know the people that give you a like, however just this small gesture is a confidence booster. The bad side to this is the question of how do you really know whether the person giving the like actually read or engaged in your website at all? You don’t. There are people, usually family and friends, that give a like just to boost your website. They boost your website and in turn other people will stop to see what all the likes are about. When you give a like and don’t really care how good the article or website you are liking is, it only hurts the person whose website you like when it’s not an honest like. A like is like a review but it’s easier to show your enjoyment. A review takes time to write, while a like just takes the click of a button. The ease of clicking a button causes more people to click like on a website, even if they don’t have a clue what the website is about. The practice of ‘I give you a like and then you, in turn, are supposed to give me a like’ is absolutely wrong. First, why would you just like something to get a like in return? There isn’t anything honest about that. A like should only be given when you have honestly engaged and enjoyed the website or article. A like should not be automatic. I like a lot of things I read and websites I view, but that doesn’t mean they are ‘like’ material. I have seen where people are practically begging for likes because they need the validation that what they are doing has meaning. The problem is that most of the time they don’t care what you feel about their work, they just want a like. YouTube has views, which is similar to a like. The more views, the better the chance that some advertiser will want to pay you; the more likes, the more views, the more money. It’s always about money, isn’t it? When you like something, be honest about it. Don’t do it just because. Take the time to read, look at or engage the website. You never know, your like might help someone do something really great. Giving a false like might give that person a false sense of greatness that isn’t really there. Why would you want to hurt someone? Like everyone, I treasure when I receive a like, but I only want a like if it is honestly given. I appreciate any time you spend reading my blogs: Retirementanddogs.blog, Uniquethings.blog and blognewsmyopinion.com.
(You will need to copy and paste blognewsmyopinion.com into google search box)

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Sneakers or Shoes – What Are You Wearing?

Sneakers have become a million dollar business. It is not just the big companies, such as Nike and Under Armour that are making money. Kids are making money by reselling their sneakers and even adding drawings and other items to sneakers to make them stand out in the crowd. I was recently introduced to Stock X, a sneaker website where you can buy or auction your sneakers. It is amazing when you realize that sneakers have separated themselves from shoes in the footwear industry. There are all types of people that wear sneakers, from the great-grandmother to the sports star. There are all kinds of sneakers for different needs, such as cross trainers, walking, sneakers that can track your steps and calories and Ecco. There are some sneakers that can cost a bundle of hundreds. That’s insane. Sneakers have seemed to replaced shoes for dressing up an outfit for occasions. People wear sneakers to weddings, funerals and anywhere else they might go. There is a certain comfort to sneakers that you just can’t get from shoes. Shoes, whatever happened to shoes? I think the most famous person was Imelda Marcos, who was the First Lady of the Philippines. When she fled her country, over a thousand pairs of shoes were allegedly found in her closet. That’s a lot of shoes! If you grew up in the 60s or 70s, you wore shoes to occasions such as Christmas, church and Easter. These shoes were usually patent leather. There were stores like Pay Less that sold shoes off a rack. Pay Less was very reasonable when you were poor. There were a lot of shoe stores that used the Pay Less model of sales to get people into the stores. It was less formal and more customer open. This model let people come in and get their shoes off a rack and try them on at their leisure. I think that’s when the realization arose that the shoe industry was in trouble. Sneakers were making their move slowly into being a force in the footwear industry. I grew up loving sneakers. When I was being shipped overseas to Germany in the late 70s, I took a suitcase with just sneakers in it. The airline consequently lost my suitcase and I was never to see those sneakers again. Now, there are all sorts of sports figures that endorse sneakers that sell for big money. There is a connection between a sports figure and his/her sneaker in that we, the customers, reason that by buying a certain sneaker we are all for that figure. Sneakers represent a style of cool relaxation. I’m a senior now, but I still love my sneakers; maybe not for the cool and relaxed effect, but just for comfort. I very seldom wear shoes now that I’m not working, but even to go to work I wore my sneakers and changed into shoes when I got to work. Shoes still serve a purpose, such as when you want to go on a date. There is something about sneakers that doesn’t seem right on a first date, but that too I feel is changing. It takes a lot of work to keep sneakers in pristine condition. When I washed my white Nike Air Max, I took the shoe laces out of the sneaker and put them in an old pillowcase. I washed them with borax and detergent and turned on the washing machine and hoped for the best. I was quite surprised at the end of the cycle, when I took them out of the pillowcase, they were white, like new white. My grandson told me to use an old toothbrush to clean them with, but I thought that was too much work. That’s when I decided to try the pillowcase method, and for me it worked. You can take away my shoes, but please leave my sneakers alone!

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Throwaway People

We know of the people that we see on the streets that have been thrown away, by choice or circumstance. There are also throwaway people much closer to you, maybe in your very own home. These throwaway people can be given this label because we have mentally thrown them away. These people are isolated, just like the people you see on street corners or lurking in the dark shadows of the night. Who are these people? They are people who are ignored, bullied, abused, and isolated. Comparing these people to the homeless – they both need help. We, as a society, ignore throwaway people. We look at them and keep walking without a thought, but when you close your mind to those closest to you, you are doing the same as if that person was sleeping on the sidewalk. When we mentally throw away a person, it’s like they don’t exist. We ignore them. We turn our heads. We isolate them by not interacting. I feel that mentally throwing away a person is worse because these are the people you know and love. I often hear people say, “I tried,” or “I’m tired of trying,” when it comes to how they can mentally remove these people from their lives. The killings, to which we are becoming all too accustomed, could be the result of people been thrown away. The rapist could be the result of being mentally thrown away. The child bully could be the result of being thrown away. The reason I can say this is because we have the best babysitter in TV and video games. These things isolate our children, but parents throw their kids in front of a TV or a computer from an early age. The child grows up only interacting with a screen; it becomes a way of life. The child becomes an adult expected to live and act as an adult socially, but he/she doesn’t know how. The adult world shows no sympathy for that adult. When there are young people with weapons and stockpiles of ammo in the same house as the parent, I can only think that the child was mentally thrown away. When you have children killing themselves due to bullying and parental neglect, I have to think they were thrown away. I say this because no matter how tired you are and how many times you try, there is always something else you can do. It is hard to believe that there is nothing else. Can we honestly turn away from a problem that we ourselves might have created? The young person in your house who is on drugs – how can you throw them away mentally? The mentally ill child showing aggression – how can you mentally throw them away? The wife who is being abused – how can you throw her away? It’s way too easy to throw them away mentally. All you have to do is turn off the part of your brain that says, “I care, I love you,” and turn it into “I will not reach out to you.” All it takes is a flip of the switch in your brain and they are gone, even if they live in the same place as you and no matter the age. The answer to the problem is it’s not easy to keep that switch on when there are so many reasons to switch it to off. We, as a society, have to do something, and at this point anything is better than nothing at all. The heart and the brain sometimes have different approaches for how to deal with problems. Is one more right than wrong? I honestly can’t say. If you are waiting for me to give you a solution, then keep waiting. Honestly, I think each of us must take a look at our lives and ask ourselves: “Did I mentally throw away somebody rather than reach out to them?” I think you have to limit television, computers and video games and stick with it. You have give your time, which is not easy for a lot of people. We are so busy with our own lives that we swear we don’t have time. There’s always time! If it’s kids – you spend time, you listen, you relate, you be empathetic, and most of all, you keep that switch on. You might try having specifically designated family time each day. You can try family reunions, so you can get more of your family involved. These are just a few things off the top of my head. I just hope that we stop mentally throwing people away. And the next time you see a homeless person, don’t turn away, but show some empathy.

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My Opinion Snippets 8/5/19

The snippets for today include the weekend.

1. Mass Shooting – What can you say these types of crimes that are committed by young people. We all have to bare the failure of these young people.My opinion we need to better as parents, neighbors, friends and as a country. It’s all our failure not. I still believe that guns to don’t kill people but people kill people. Yes, there should be more regulations for guns, however I think education should also be part. The walmart in Florida is the same one I frequent, , though they did get the person attempting to shoot up the walmart in Gibsonton, Florida. I had to pause because that scenario could have gone bad in so many ways. People we have to get better our young people are crying for help and there’s nothing to wipe away the tears so they turn to anger.

2. Banana Milk – I never knew about banana milk. I going to try it and give you a review.

3. The stock market – Stocks look to tank again with trade issues getting flushed. How long will 45 let this continue before he says something to turn the market around. My opinion is 45 will this go until he thinks he’s lost to much money.

4. Tom Brady got a huge boost to his pay. My opinion is sports people get paid to mush and there should something better to do with money when you see all the problems going on. I understand people want to get paid but there should be a limit. The pay sports people get is ridiculous, nobody is worth that many millions.

5. Kids and. Preschool – Kids are getting put out of preschool at a alarming rate. This is because schools are not prepared to handle troubled kids. My opinion is schools need more education on dealing with this kids because those same kids might end up being a shooter later in life. Again, it needs to be a joint effort from schools and parents. I sometime think parents expect kids to get their guidance from schools. Have parents forgot what their role is and that schools are suppose to educate not take on their job.

6. Whose Steve Harvey dating – I hope its not who I’ve read about. My opinion go on 90 Day Fiancée if your pool of dating is used up. I am not condemning anyone from dating younger or older. What I hate is that damage can be done to the younger or older person when it doesn’t work out, which more than likely it won’t especially 20 year differences.

This is my opinion for day. What your take? Thank you in advance for your support and likes. It’s not about agreeing with me, but about you being heard.

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Gender Identity, Really

I am a senior lesbian, but gender identity is something I just can’t believe in wholeheartedly. When I hear about kids as young as three going through any type of gender assignment, I wonder what has gotten into their parents . 
When I decided to write this blog, I had to look up gender identity to see at what age children start to know about gender. I was shocked to find that the age is 18 to 24 months. I mean, at that age, kids are not expressing themselves and are barely toilet trained. Children’s thought patterns at that age are not developed, so how can they understand gender? Then as they get older, when parents say, “My daughter likes to play with trucks or my son likes to dress up,” I can’t see that translating into “My child isn’t comfortable with his/her gender.” There is no rationale, even if your child stomps around the house protesting to play with toys that their peers are playing with. If a three-year-old boy likes dolls and dressing up in girls’ clothes, that use to be considered normal and something they will grow out of. This is a different time now, where everything is unisex, so how do you know the child isn’t just going through a phase? A young child emulates the people around him/her; therefore, if parents don’t give the child a chance to grow into him/herself, they are pushing their fears and thoughts onto the child. Parents, I’m sure, take the child to doctors and therapists before starting any type of gender change. I’m also sure it’s not an easy thought that your child might not be the right gender, so how can you think the child knows what gender he/she wants to be? This is the same child that is barely using a folk. I can see how an older child, say maybe twelve, may start to feel his/her hormones and have questions about his/her identity. I can see that child as a teenager engaging in bisexuality for a period just to experiment. When I grew up, experimentation was a part of growing up, whereas now it’s a gender identity problem. There is a problem with the problem. The other issue I have with gender identity regarding young children is, what happens when the child grows into an adult and now thinks he/she wants to go back to his/her birth gender? It’s not like the child can just run to the nearest doctor for a reversal. The same confusion they have as young children about gender identity will be the same confusion they will have as an adult about gender. What he/she feels it was a mistake. I have watched Jazz, and I’m not saying that for some kids maybe it is an issue, but not for kids of a very young age. My grandson, who is age five, has long hair and sometimes people mistake him for a girl. If he played with dolls and ran around in my daughter’s skirt with heels daily, I wouldn’t encourage her to think that he has a gender issue and let’s run to get therapy. I just can’t believe that at age five he knows he wants to be a girl. My advice to her would be to let him grow into himself. Kids go through all kinds of phases, and some phases can last a long time. I would encourage her to expose him to both genders of children. I know this is a highly debatable subject, which is understandable because the suicide rate for children has risen. I do love that television is bringing to light gay issues that can give a better understanding of issues young children may encounter. Parents should look at themselves to see if they play any part in gender identity issues with their child. Remember, it all starts with the parents’ shaping their child’s world. That doesn’t mean there aren’t children out there who have gender identity issues. It does mean that maybe, just maybe, you shouldn’t be so quick to put a label on your child at such a young age.

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My New Boyfriend

You have a new boyfriend?

Yep, yummy like a cold glass of water

What does he do?

Make me happy

Where is he?

In the closet

What’s he doing?

Standing up

Can he come out?

Only at night

What’s his name?

Dick

Can I see him?

Under the covers

Is he any good?

Yep he has three speeds

Can I try him?

Unsanitary get your own

How big is he?

As big as you want he can grow

Where did you meet him?

The store

How often do you see him?

Almost Every night

Is he married?

Nope single and always free

What’s his color?

Midnight black but there’s other colors

Other colors?

Yes black brown and pink

Pink?

Can’t leave out the other folks

Other folks?

Yep white and bright

Where’s he right now?

In the closet

Again with The closet.

Dick can you come out please?

He can’t talk

Can he walk ?

Not on his own

How tall is he?

About 10 inches

Is he a midget?

Nope long and lean

Can he kiss good

Nope but he feels me up

Does he have a friend?

Nope, single

Does he have his own place?

Yep, in the closet

Can you please ask him to come out?

Nope, only at night

Is there anything I can know about Dick?

Yep, puts a smile on my face. SEE!

It’s time to take from the back of the closet an boldly put in out front in your bedroom. There’s no need to be a shame. Do you remember your old boyfriend? The one that you had to cater to, had to cook for, had to do laundry and had to put yourself aside so he could feel like he is the man. Your new boyfriend comes with none of those headaches. The biggest thing is he doesn’t talk and there’s no morning breathe. You don’t have to pretend to be satisfied when you need more. You can just push a button and get more. Your new boyfriend carries none of the baggage of old relationships because he’s fresh out of the box. You no longer had to deal with I’m tired on a night when you want Dick. Maybe you should have bought dick out of the closet when you had that old boyfriend. Maybe just maybe you would still have that old boyfriend. You will never know since he’s now you old boyfriend. Your new boyfriend is always ready. You know what shout it loud I Love Dick and then scream it even louder. Don’t be shy. You might be surprised how many people have Dick hidden in their closet. Break the ice and you’ll see Dick is satisfying many people. You never had Dick? It’s never to late the stores where Dick hangs out are open late. You’ll be surprised what you might discover when you go inside, Dick has many sizes, shapes and colors. You don’t know how to use Dick? There’s instructions. What do you have to lose your old boyfriend is gone. Try something new (less headaches). You need to smile Dick can do that. Don’t let nobody make you feel bad about Dick. They are jealous. Who knows they might have a Dick in their closet and just want to throw you off. If you need a new boyfriend or maybe you just want some me time then consider Dick located in a sex store. Dick is hanging out in front for all to see. I hope when you finished smiling and glowing in the aftermath that you pass this around to your friends and see how many also have a new boyfriend named Dick.

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America The Beautiful or The Bruised

There are caravans of immigrants clamoring to get into this country. Why? Because there is no country that will give them the liberties that this country does. The immigrants know one thing for sure: America is the beautiful place that will save them from the stifling country from which they came. I see that America has become a bruised country. We hear a lot about a country divided, but were we really ever together? We are a divided country much like cheap cement that falls apart with the slightest wind. The cheap cement that has held us together, as we can see, has easily separated us. Can we blame anyone but ourselves for the lack of unity? No, we can’t. We have someone who pushes the envelope just like television pushes the envelope with sex. It is no wonder the two are equated. I didn’t vote for many years, maybe into my 40s, because I felt as if my vote didn’t make a difference. When the election was over and the candidate I would have voted for (if I had voted) lost, I thought I would see that my vote wouldn’t have mattered. I have since learned not to look at it in that view but to view it as my vote could be the one vote that could have taken my candidate to the winner’s podium. I vote all the time now. How many of you have that view about not voting? Another reason to vote is because people withstood a lot to make voting a right for everyone. A lot of blood has been shed to give citizens voting rights. I had not appreciated those who came before me and actually saw the importance of voting. I bet immigrants, as soon as they are given citizenship, run out and vote. Immigrants seem to appreciate this country more than the people who were actually born here. We are a bruised country by the very same things that immigrants see as America the beautiful. I’m talking about words like freedom, equality, and the things we take for granted. As for the politicians we elect into office, sometimes I wonder if it is some kind of Ponzi scheme where the head person brings in a person and every person has to keep bringing in people to keep the game going, along with money to keep it going. It might not be money that keeps the game going but rather the laws based on whoever is in charge. The game changes every four years, and unless you’re rich, the laws seem to keep feeding the upper rungs of people. Do immigrants know about this or do they even care? I doubt it because some of their governments will kill people for going against the government, whereas in America, they just change a law or get more tax money from the people at the bottom. We are a bruised country. We are a country that needs healing, but how do we heal a country that was never whole? I was in the military in the late 70s. It was during peacetime, and I hate to say this, but our military was ill prepared to continue its fight. The military then was more like a country club. It seemed like we were tired. My spouse just retired, and, in talking to her, it seems the military has changed. It had to or we could not scare other countries into believing in our strength. The immigrants see this country as a cover of protection, while some of us hope that we can keep fooling other countries about our power. It’s a sad situation. Immigrants come here for equality, but that is a blog by itself. I will say that the equality immigrants seek is just anything, because they have never really had the type of equality and freedom that they can have here. Do they realize that many people here don’t want them in this country? Do they know that they will become a minority class, that Americans will look down on them? Hell, we Americans look down on each other, so why would we welcome immigrants? The times have changed … or have they? When immigrants came here many, many years ago, they were stuffed in neighborhoods where they were all the same. The purpose of this was to keep them under control. That has been the case throughout the centuries. The immigrants still come to America the beautiful. I sadly feel, however, that we are a bruised country that can only be healed by starting all over again from the top to the bottom. I mean instituting new laws and getting rid of outdated laws. We need laws that reflect the times in which we live. There should be freedom and equality for all, no matter how much money one has. Everyone should be on an equal playing field. Why do we have rich, middle and poor classes? What is the purpose other than to divide and make one group stronger at the expense of the other? Let every man and woman, regardless of their class, fight for a job on an equal playing field. Immigrants will continue to use any means possible to get to America, while some of us here will use any means possible to go somewhere else. As bruised as the country is, maybe it’s time to heal it. That job, I hope, will come from our future generations. Hopefully, they can join together and strip away the scab on the country and let it heal.

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A Grandmothers Dilemma

This is my dilemma: I have three grandsons; the oldest is 16, soon to be 17, and it seems the relationship I had with him has faded. How many of you find that as your grandchildren have gotten older there seems to be a disconnect?
Every generation strives to be better parents and grandparents to the new generation. It is not easy. I grew up in the age when being outside was the thing to do. You met your friends and went to the club and danced the night away. Now, with cell phones and video games, there’s an isolation that seems to be happening. While some still go to the club when they are of age, just as many are content to stay in front of a video game or have their face in the small screen of a cell phone. I can see that happening with my grandson. The oldest has very few friends. I mean the kind that you meet in early grades and you stick together through college and beyond. He has what I’d call acquaintances; people you meet haphazardly in school. He seems content being in his room and only going out for meals and occasional interactions with his brothers. The point is, we have just about the same amount of kids staying in and being isolated as going out and being sociable. As a grandparent, I want to help, so I ask: “What are you interested in?” The reply is usually, “Nothing,” and that’s the end of our conversation. I can tell by the silence on the other end of the phone that he wants to be anyplace but on the phone with me. This is the same kid who, just a few years ago, was drawing and talking with some ambition. Where did he go? I speak to my daughter, but as a grandparent, I have to be diplomatic in my approach. I mean, I try to be tactful by first saying what a great mom she is, which is true, she’s a parent that I never was. I then proceed to ask about each of my grandsons’ wellbeing and finding out what they are up to. I don’t want to target just him. That might not go over well. I then say how I feel that he is unmotivated and has no interest in anything.; silence is what I get. That’s the end of the conversation. I went online to find classes for him for the summer, since he applied too late to be considered for a job. He applied in June and all of the summer jobs for kids are taken by then. I told my daughter in February to start researching for summer jobs and have him apply. I found an online program with Jam.com. They offer all kinds of online courses such as drawing, photography, animation, and more. You get a 2-week trial before having to pay for the course. I was excited. Surely something there would spark something. He did the two-week trial drawing, but he wasn’t interested in the full course. What can I do now? I guess what upsets me is when he needs $200.00 sneakers, his parents can’t afford, he becomes the sweet kid I used to know. I’m a grandparent, not his parents, so what I say is I wouldn’t say dismissed, but not given the full consideration that I might know what I’m talking about. Maybe I’m so removed from his generation that I don’t fully understand about communication with his generation.
I will tell you one thing: I’m a grandparent and love all of my grandsons. I will continue to put myself out there, knowing that sometimes his distance will hurt, but hoping one day he will become that same kid that I was close to as an adult.

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Let’s Talk

This is the post excerpt.

We don’t talk and conversate anymore. I want bring back the art of conversation. My blogs will be to stimulate conversation not just with me but with each other. If you have a topic email me and I’ll write a blog to get the conversation going. The sky’s the limit on topics. If you have something on your mind let it out relationship, gay matters, politics, religion. You had a argument with your spouse or the kids aren’t listening put it out there right here. Let’s get started.

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