If We Were Having Coffee… 8/20/17

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Welcome! Come in, come in. It’s been a few weeks. August gets a bit hectic in my neck of the woods.

We were able to have a great family vacation. We went to St. Augustine, Florida. Our hotel was just a ten minute walk to the beach, so we had daily beach time. This was peaceful, healing, and much-needed. St. Augustine is the oldest settlement in the US and the town has a lot to offer as well. We went to the Castillo de San Marcos monument and the Cathedral Basilica. There was also a lot of shopping. My kids loved the Ripley’s Believe It or Not museum. Here are a few pics:

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Two days after we returned home, school started. My girls are in eighth grade and fourth grade. They like their teachers and schedules. So far, so good. I’m glad they are back in school, though I’m not ready for the busy routine of homework and extracurriculars.

We are eagerly awaiting the solar eclipse tomorrow. Our town is in the direct path and we will have two and a half minutes of totality. Out-of-staters are coming in to view it as well. School was cancelled so we will be able to view it as a family together.

Catch me up. What would you tell me if we were having coffee?

Thanks to our lovely host, Diana at Part-time Monster! Stop in and have a cup with our other participants at the linkup here.

If We Were Having Coffee… 7/31/17

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I know, I know. The weekend is over. Believe me, I’m well aware that it is Monday. I had planned to meet up with you yesterday but it just didn’t happen. I was pleased to see that the linkup was still open (thanks, Diana!) so I thought we could grab a quick cup.

We had a good weekend! My daughter elected to forgo a big birthday party this year in lieu of a sleepover with one friend. So we picked up that friend on Saturday and we went to a bouncy house place and the mall. I know a lot of malls are dying out (and so is ours to be honest) but we found a couple of fun things to do there. The kids did a bouncy trampoline thing (where they connect you to a bunch of big rubber bands and let you jump) and they also rode motorized animal scooters (they are basically giant stuffed animals on wheels). Then we came back to our house for the sleepover.

So it seems I didn’t get much done this weekend. At least, I didn’t get much done that I wanted to. I did a lot of house cleaning on Saturday which led to back pain. I tended to the kids which kept me somewhat busy. Sunday I basically succumbed to headache and back pain instead of being productive. It was disappointing and I hate when I have days like that.

I am waiting for the body shop to call me about my car. It should be ready today. My rental car is nice, but I am ready to give it back and get my own car back. I have missed it!

I am also trying to plan our quick before-school-starts vacation. We are going to South Carolina to visit family (my in-laws) but we also want to take a side trip to the beach. Of course, my husband’s family makes it hard to make plans (which is typical for them). We leave on August 8, so I want to get plans finalized.

Catch me up. What would you tell me if we were having coffee?

Thanks to our lovely host, Diana at Part-time Monster! Stop in and have a cup with our other participants at the linkup here.

If We Were Having Coffee… 7/23/17

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Welcome! Come on in out of the heat. It is not even 10am and it is already eleventy billion degrees. We have had an oppressive heat wave here in the Midwest this week. In St. Louis we hit a record high yesterday (or maybe it was Friday? The hot days melt together in my brain) with an air temp of 108. And we have high humidity so it felt higher than 108. You can take several showers a day and still feel like a sweaty mess.

Given the heat, you may want to skip the coffee in favor of a cooler drink. We also have leftover birthday cake from my daughter’s celebration yesterday. She is 9 years old. It is hard to believe. I know it is cliché, but time really does fly, especially with parenthood. Her actual birthday was Tuesday and we had a small celebration that day. But since I had to work that day, we delayed the big cake/ice cream/presents party until yesterday.  She wore a couple of her presents all day (new leotard and tights and a hello kitty backpack). I also gave her some cash so we will probably hit some stores today.

We were in a minor car accident last weekend. Thankfully, minor is the key word. No one was injured and my car is driveable. There is damage, however, and since we were not at fault I have been dealing with the other driver’s insurance company. We are finally moving forward and I will drop my car off for repairs on Wednesday and pick up my rental car. My driver’s door is messed up and it makes a loud pop sound when I open it so I will be very happy to get that fixed.

Tomorrow is our go-live date for our new software system at work. We are ill-prepared and I expect tomorrow to be a complete dumpster fire. I have two meetings this week (one at 7am and one at 4:30pm), neither of which I really want to attend. I will be arriving late on Wednesday after dropping off my car. And I am leaving early on Thursday to go to my older daughter’s middle school orientation. My coworker is also on vacation. Overall, I think it will be one of those “praying for Friday” kind of workweeks.

I have been improving with my running in both speed and distance. I have to keep a close eye on my back and the pain has been status quo (but not worse, which is good). I think the running hurts my hips more than my back anyway. As long as I don’t see a significant increase in joint pain, I keep going.

Catch me up. What would you tell me if we were having coffee?

Thanks to our lovely host, Diana at Part-time Monster! Stop in and have a cup with our other participants at the linkup here.

If We Were Having Coffee… 7/8/17

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Welcome, coffee friends! Look at me having coffee on Saturday (I’m usually a late Sunday person). I’m glad we could meet again. It is ridiculously hot today, so we may want to choose cooler beverages. We will definitely be staying inside in the A/C.

It has been a relatively quiet week at my house. I enjoyed an extra day off for the Fourth of July. We watched the fireworks display at our local park but otherwise had a restful holiday. I also worked a half day Thursday and had the day off Friday. Yay for short workweeks! Thursday I took my daughter to the doctor for school-required vaccinations prior to entering 8th grade. Eighth grade. It is hard to believe. Where does the time go? And my baby is entering 4th grade! It will be her last year of elementary school.

My days off went well because now I have a coworker than can handle things in my absence. I cannot adequately describe the peace of mind that gives me. I did answer several emails from home, but otherwise she could deal with patient results and phone calls and such.

I went for a nice run yesterday on my treadmill. You might remember that I am slowly getting back into running after a lengthy hiatus due to back injury. Yesterday I did well. I did about 20 minutes of running with one 10 minute interval. This may not sound impressive to a seasoned runner but for me it was incredible progress. I even got a pressure bruise on the bottom of my second toe. This happens to me a lot when running.

The TV is currently tuned to Titanic. I enjoy that movie so. Rose is getting rescued out of the water after the ship sinks. Why couldn’t Jack fit on that big slab of wood with her? Poor frozen Jack.

We could talk commiserate about the Cardinals again. It is same old, same old…. bullpen, pitching, field errors, baserunning snafu’s, yada yada yada. We are still below .500. They did win today, though. I love them, but man are they killing me this season.

I participated in Friday Fictioneers this week. Please check out Farewell Fireworks.

So catch me up. What would you tell me if we were having coffee?

Thanks to Emily at Nerd in the Brain for hosting the Weekend Coffee Share (next week back to Part-time Monster)! Stop in and have a cup with our other participants at the linkup here.

Farewell Fireworks

Debbie carefully packed her desk items into a box. She paused at the cup overflowing with bent paperclips, one deposited every day she worked in this dreadful office.

She wasn’t necessarily ready for retirement, but the company had pushed her toward a settlement. Out with the old, in with the new.

Good luck with that. There was more drama than work with her younger counterparts. They also had loose lips. Yes, Debbie had all the dirt. Affairs. Embezzlement. Stealing.

The secrets flowed through her fingertips as she typed her final email to her boss.

She was going out with a bang.

 

PHOTO PROMPT © Claire Sheldon

Happy Friday! This is written for the weekly flash fiction challenge, Friday Fictioneers. Check out the other 100-word gems of flash fiction here. Many thanks to our lovely host, Rochelle Wisoff-Fields.

Fugitive

Outrunning the police was not easy, but finding the hidden stash was just as difficult.

Sore feet and aching legs carried her through the never-ending maze of streets. She checked the photo one more time. This had to be it. Everything seemed to match… the archway, the wires, the cracks in the bricks.

She knelt at the manhole cover and pried it open with shaky fingers. Reaching into the darkness, she felt the bag that Paolo had secured under the street. The cash and fake ID were there, just as he promised. Tears of relief hit her cheeks.

Time to disappear.

 

Photo credit: Rochelle Wisoff-Fields

Happy weekend! This is written for the weekly flash fiction challenge, Friday Fictioneers. Check out the other 100-word gems of flash fiction here. Many thanks to our lovely host, Rochelle Wisoff-Fields.

If We Were Having Coffee… 7/2/17

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Welcome! It is so great to see you. I am sorry that I have missed our coffee dates for the last several weeks. Life happened. Come on in and I’ll grab us some beverages.

The Cardinals are on the television. You don’t mind, do you? They are losing right now. We’ve had a couple of good games lately, we beat the Washington Nationals the first two games of the series. Tonight is not starting out well for us. We need to win as we need to gain some ground on the Cubs. I could go on and on about our dismal bullpen and our inconsistent lineup but I will spare you. Please excuse me if I start yelling at the TV during our talk.

Things at work are going well. Our new counselor is settled in and working out great. It is a relief to have someone else to share the workload. Our schedule has also been light since she started, allowing for some time to catch up. Overall, my stress level has been much reduced. I haven’t brought work home on the weekends in weeks.

Do you have any plans for the 4th of July? I have to work Monday and I am only off work Tuesday the 4th. We have no real plans. Our town has a firework show in the park Monday night. We might go to that, we might not.

Big Brother started this week. It is my summer guilty pleasure. I also watched The Mist, a new series on Spike TV based on a Stephen King story.  I tend to have high hopes for King adaptations (even after The Dome fiasco). I think I need to lower my expectations.

Catch me up. What would you tell me if we were having coffee?

Thanks to Emily at Nerd in the Brain for hosting the Weekend Coffee Share (created by Part-time Monster)! Stop in and have a cup with our other participants at the linkup here.

Welcome to Paradise

 

Chelsea awoke with a massive headache, courtesy of the free-flowing booze at the all-inclusive resort.

Welcome to Paradise.

‘Where is John? Why is our room so messy?! Maybe he went down to the beach. Fresh air sounds good.’

She stumbled along the boardwalk and froze at the sand’s edge, confused. It was 2:00 pm but the sky was as black as midnight. Crumpled towels, umbrellas, and flip-flops were carelessly strewn about. But not a single person in sight.

A bright light suddenly shone down on her like a spotlight. Caught between fear and hope, she looked up.

It took her swiftly.

 

PHOTO PROMPT © Dale Rogerson

Happy Friday! This is written for the weekly flash fiction challenge, Friday Fictioneers. Check out the other 100-word gems of flash fiction here. Many thanks to our lovely host, Rochelle Wisoff-Fields.

First Date

 

Maeve surreptitiously checked her watch again. This was the worst date ever.

It’s not his fault,’ she thought, excusing herself to the restroom.

With shaky exhale, she studied her tired features in the mirror. Her grief was still messy like an overgrown vine, tangled and disruptive, unrelenting in its devouring grip.

Well-meaning friends aside, she was obviously not ready for this. She still wanted the only man she could no longer have. Pretending otherwise was pointless.

When her unsuspecting date opened the note delivered by the waiter, Maeve was long gone.

“I’m sorry” was all she could manage to write.

 

Photo by Sarah Potter

 

Yes, I know I’m late for Friday Fictioneers! Better late than never? I didn’t want to skip out again, though. This photo screamed isolation and desperation to me. You can find the other entries for this photo prompt here.

 

 

Turning Down Life’s Volume

This is really less of a response to today’s Daily post and more of a message to my friends and readers…

I have been on a bit of a hiatus… not really intentionally, but that’s how things go. Summer rolls around and the kids are out of school. Things are busy at work (I’m training a new person AND preparing for a software upgrade which has turned into a huge pain in the ass). When I have free time at home (what limited free time there is), I tend to want to retreat into the beloved quiet of my brain… turn down the volume of life, if you will. I’ve tried to read more, relax more. Unfortunately, I have fallen off the wagon with Friday Fictioneers and Weekend Coffee Share. I will get back to them, I promise.

I have had views on both my Facebook page and the blog itself. I see you and I appreciate you checking in on me. I hope to connect with you soon.