Monday, December 19, 2011

Oh, To Be 8 Years Old Again

Think back to this time of year when you were 8 years old…..even if that was a very long time ago for some of you reading this.
Oh, the anticipation!
Oh, the excitement!

I was taught what Christmas was really about ….celebrating Jesus’ birth.  My upbringing included being in church and Sunday school and there the excitement built even more. We knew it was a very special holiday for the right reasons.

Being 8 years old I also knew Santa Claus was coming and I was going to get presents!
My little brother, Chuck, and I woke on that Christmas morning at probably 4am. We sneaked to the Christmas tree and stared at the presents. They were all wrapped and we didn’t dare touch one of them for fear of waking mom and dad. There was a very large box and it said To: Brenda and Chuck, From Santa.  We sat looking at that box whispering about what could possibly be in it for both of us. I suppose we sat there like that for a couple hours until mom and dad got up. We may have even gone back to bed and pretended to be asleep when we heard them getting up so as not to get caught.

The big box contained a child’s electric organ/piano but that is not even important. What is important is what we were feeling.
The anticipation!
The excitement!
It had built for a couple weeks leading up to this one day.

I am no longer 8 years old but I can still feel that anticipation and excitement when it is this close to Christmas. I no longer believe in Santa Claus and don’t care about presents but I do still believe in the reason we celebrate.

Chuck is with Jesus now, celebrating in a way we can’t comprehend here on earth. I feel certain he is playing music in heaven because that organ/piano was just a start for him being very musically talented as a child, almost prodigy talented. Me, not so much, not a lick of musical talent.

My wish for you at Christmas is to remember the reason for this celebration and you have the anticipation and excitement you did as an 8 year old. Maybe you don’t have family, maybe you don’t have money for presents, maybe you can’t be with your family….doesn’t matter. Your heart is what matters….Oh Come All Ye Faithful.
Do you have a Christmas memory you will share here? Something you remember so many years later.
Happy Birthday Jesus and Merry Christmas to my blog friends.

Friday, December 9, 2011

Angels.....everywhere this week!

This has been a most interesting week!

It started with a former FBI agent, now author, who knows all about angels. That was shared with me by the dearest of all friends who I think is an earthly angel. I also think this FBI agent may know me because of angels. That may sound a bit strange, but it just is.

In 1999 someone gave me a piece of garden statuary of an angel. It was extremely important to me at the time because of my mothers death. For the past week or so I have been almost consumed with the thought that the angel needed to go back to the place it came from to comfort someone else. I just knew someone needed to see that angel and feel the comfort I did in 1999 and every day since when I saw it in my garden.
I made that happen today.

In the process, I met and made a new friend who transported the angel back to it's orignal place for me. Over coffee with this person, we connected immediately, and I believe we will have a great friendship now.  

Did the angel have anything to do with that?

Of all things, over cocktails in a bar last night, I shared some of my "angel stories" with someone who surprised even me I was telling about these experiences. Maybe they needed to hear about it.

I am open to receiving whatever God has in store for me and maybe, just maybe, all these angels are so prominent this week in my life for a wonderful, joyful reason.

I believe they are.

It is the season after all!

Sunday, December 4, 2011

As Seen On TV....and everywhere else

This was in my newspaper sale flyers today and my very first thought was “stylish” pajama jeans…..really?

Why in the world do we need to promote people wearing their pajama’s in public any more than they already do by making them look like jeans?  
Pajama’s are for sleeping. Unless you are self employed, work from home a lot and begin your day at 6:30am, then they can be your morning work clothes.

I see so many people in their pj’s and house slippers in stores, in the airport and sometimes just walking down the street.
Why do they think that is acceptable?
It seems the people who dress like that just shuffle along slowly as if they just woke up and won’t get the hell out of my way. I don’t care how nice those plaid flannel jammies are or how comfortable they are, you look like a real lazy ass loser in public.

I was raised in a different era where you dressed a certain way for inside the house and outside the house. You also wore your best for church. I was at the court house last year filing some things and was appalled at how people were dressed. That is another place I think you should show some respect and not wear your pj’s.

As I write this, it has gotten dark outside and I am in for the night.  
Time to put my jammies on!

Friday, November 18, 2011

What The Hell Is Going On In Our Country?

Is this keeping with my Last Half Journey title?
Yes, it is.
It has to do with what I learned at the beginning of the First Half and it serves me well in the Last Half. It is my thinking of what is wrong with our country and how to fix it.
It is really quite simple.
I had no desire to kill anyone growing up or now. Okay, maybe Gary Booth and my little brother, Chuck, a couple times but I never would have acted on it.
I only had the desire to take something that wasn’t mine one time. I wanted to mail something and didn’t have the money for a stamp. I took a stamp off something my mom had gotten in the mail and glued it on my envelope. I am sure I probably tried to erase the cancellation mark on the stamp. I grew up in a small town and the post mistress called my mom. I was taken to the post office and explained that I was stealing by doing that and I could go to jail.  I remember that to this day and I couldn’t have been more than 5 or 6 years old. Was never even tempted to take a piece of bubble gum that didn’t belong to me after that.
I have no room in my life for lying. If you lie to me you are dead to me. Okay, maybe not dead to me but I am very slow to forgive a lie.
I am not going through each of the Ten Commandments because I would have to confess to not following all them myself. I do know what they are and do know that when I was little my mom would have beat my ass for not following them.
I knew right from wrong, black from white.
I was taught that.
There were consequences for not obeying.
It seems to me no one cares about right and wrong or black from white any longer. There is no accountability. We are so dependent on the Federal government to dictate these things and they do a piss poor job of it. Who are they to legislate every part of our daily lives? Who are we to allow it? Most of them wouldn’t know honesty, morals, ethics, etc. if it bit them on the ass.
I believe if parents taught the Ten Commandments to their children and lived it themselves our jails would be a lot emptier, we wouldn’t need more legislation, our feelings wouldn’t get hurt at every little perceived slight (PC), we would be a lot kinder, and maybe just maybe a lot happier.

It would be so easy to get everything back on track if we chose to live by these commandments. Maybe they need to be printed and hung in each classroom - no that wouldn't work because it would offend someone and besides that, it isn't the schools responsibility. Maybe the sperm and egg donors could hang them in their childrens rooms and talk about them each and every day. That way it isn't left up to the teachers and the government to do. Maybe the sperm and egg donors could be parents. Just maybe our country would eventually be better.
What do you think? Do you have a better idea?  Let me know in the comments.

Saturday, November 5, 2011

O Wow! Beautiful!

Reading about Steve Jobs final words, a friend dying and another friend telling me his wife’s unresolved grief over her mother was destroying their marriage brought so many personal experience memories to the forefront of my mind.

There probably won’t be any doubt after reading this but I am Christian and believe there is an afterlife. I believe that with all my being.

Like Steve Jobs, my mom’s death was a testament to that with her final word being “beautiful”. Her death was so incredibly spiritual and beautiful that I considered it a gift from God to be present.
I likened her death to a birth - she was being born into another life.
My husbands death was just as amazing. 
Having an open mind to death and not being afraid of it helped me view it as something to embrace. It is part of life so why wouldn’t we? Don’t we celebrate when a baby is born?

Does that attitude or belief diminish your missing them? Not at all. Does it diminish the pain of their death? I think it does in a certain way. I know people who are tortured by someone’s death years after the fact. Is that because of regret perhaps? Maybe things left unsaid?  My older brother was so tortured by my younger brothers death he drank and drugged himself to a very lonely death and his life was spent in misery. Maybe those of us who make the most of our daily lives fear death the least and handle it best. We can be accepting of it as the end of a well lived earthly life.

Whether it is Steve Jobs or my mom or my husband or your grandmother, having an open mind, free of fear and being present at such a moment in someone’s life is a gift. I credit that belief in helping me grieve in a healthy manner for my loved ones. The friends so angry wife or the wife who is destroying her marriage because of her mothers’ death are sadder to me than the deaths.

I know my final thought on earth will be “O Wow, Beautiful”!
Do you have a story you can share with me? Please post a comment if you do.

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Working From Home Or How To Become a Stinky, Obsessed Marketer Unless You Help Me

For most of my life I have gone to an office where I had to get in my car and drive to get there. That required a shower, makeup, suitable clothing, shoes, accessories and hair done.

Now, I stumble out of bed, down the hall and flip the switch on the coffee pot that was prepared the night before. While the coffee is brewing I continue stumbling out the door and down the driveway to get the paper. I glance through the paper until coffee is done and I can pour that first wonderful cup that will give me the jolt of caffeine I need.

Then it is straight to my desk with coffee cup in hand.
Check personal email, my personal Facebook page, then it is work mode and on to clients Facebook pages, Twitter, LinkedIn or blogs. I begin researching over night developments for clients and begin the full bore work for them. By this time I have seen my business partner is online and we begin chatting on Facebook. She works from home also and is still in her pj’s with her coffee beside her.
That early in the morning, usually it is about 6:30am, we are planning our day via Facebook chat and who is doing what for which client and what has priority.  As we both wake up a bit more and the caffeine has done its work for both of us the laughter, actually the LOL or TFF, begins with our chats. One of us is apt to spew coffee because of something the other typed. We are quite entertaining.
Two cups of coffee done and time for breakfast. That requires walking just a few feet to the kitchen for the bowl of Cheerios and right back to my desk. Suddenly the morning is almost gone and I realize I have not stopped working and I have not even brushed my teeth or washed my face yet.
Oh shit!
I take a break finally and attend to cleanliness and put clothes on. Obviously, if I have client appointments the morning is different. They wouldn’t appreciate me showing up the way I begin my day normally.

Back to work, then fix a sandwich or something for lunch and bring it back to my desk to work. Finally in the afternoon I move my office to the outdoors for some fresh air if the weather cooperatives.  There are distractions when I am outside so I am not as productive but it is lovely with the birds, wind chimes and the waterfalls.

I have always worked at least 10 hours per day so that part doesn’t bother me. Now though, self employed and working from home has me working pretty much every waking hour of the day. My desk is in my den so even at night when I try so hard to just watch TV I hear a ding on my computer and just have to get up and see what is happening. I saw a sign recently that said “I Can’t Go To Bed Yet, Shit Is Happening On the Internet”. That pretty much sums it up.

For those who think working from home allows you to get more things done around your house or yard - not a chance! I barely clean myself up let alone the house or yard. Starting tomorrow I am committed to showering and dressing before 9am even when I don’t have client meetings just so I don’t someday find myself still in my pj’s when it is time to go to bed at night.

Now for the how you can help me......
Help me by reminding me from time to time to be sure I am on task with this.  A simple did you brush your teeth, did you shower, did you get dressed will do.  Oh, and for goodness sakes if I make a mistake and forget my state of disarray someday and go out in public
please, please, please
no pictures. Just pretend I am some crazy person who you ignore and then you are sworn to secrecy about what you saw.

Monday, October 10, 2011

How Old Is Too Young?

The big news is Sir Paul McCartney marrying for the third time to Nancy Shevell.

 Former Beatle Sir Paul McCartney and his wife American heiress Nancy Shevell leave Marylebone Registry Office, following their wedding in central London, Sunday Oct. 9, 2011. Shevell, 51, is McCartney's third wife.The couple met in the Hamptons in Long Island, New York, shortly after the singer's divorce from Heather Mills in 2008 and they were engaged earlier this year. (AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis)A piece of that reporting has been about the age difference.

He is 69 - She is 51

Is an 18 year age difference too much? What about 50 years?  What about 10 years?

Over cocktails friday night we were discussing this very issue. Didn't seem to be a defined number that was acceptable for men or women. This article has some interesting observations about younger men with older women.
We also had the whole Cougar "cougar" conversation.
That has become such a negative word for women with younger men. What about older man with younger woman? I have a 60+ male friend who will only date much younger women with store bought body parts. I just know there is a word for that - SHALLOW, okay more than one word EGOTISTICAL. Guess that has nothing to do with age though.
Back on topic.......
Is 50 years age difference too much?

I had an employee who married her husband when she was 18 - he was 68. That ain't right, ya'll.

I have said many times you had no control over what year you were born but you do have control over how old you are. I believe I will spend my time with who is a compatible age with me no matter what year he was born. Someone with the same voltage.

Monday, October 3, 2011

Just Dance!

I have been doing a lot of “talking” on here about dating and men and have not explored the other parts of my life publicly.

Let me tell you a bit about my day today.

       I was always such a routine based person and if you took me out of that routine I was going to have a challenging day.  Typically, my day would start with coffee and the newspaper, then shower, dress, go to office.  If out of the routine I may have to check my toothbrush to see if it was wet to know if I actually brushed my teeth. My office is in my house now so my day starts with coffee and sitting at my computer working in my pj’s while I am waking up with that wonderful hot caffeine.

     This morning I was happily working when my phone rang fairly early for most people I suppose and it was a dear, dear friend who just wanted to say hello, I mattered to her and she loved me. In the next hour a client messaged me to say they liked what we were doing for them and was impressed.  Then I communicated with my business partner via chat and she is such an inspiration it made me kick it into another gear creatively. 

     So far, before 9am or so on a Monday, I have personal and professional feel good moments. I decided the day had begun so well I should just dance.  I put on my Day Starter Playlist from Spotify and just danced! Yes, danced. I felt such joy it was easy to do that. I even used some of the “moves” my pole/chair instructor taught me while dancing but I did it for me and not someone else. I felt happy and sexy – all that before lunch, hell that was before 10:00am.  The very best part of that is I felt that inside, for me. Yes, it was triggered by some outside influences but my feelings were real.

     Take the time to call someone in your life who matters, tell them that. Tell them you love them.  Tell them they have made a difference in your life.

     Take the time to tell someone you do business with they are doing a good job. Yes, that includes the person who checks out your groceries or bags them. Hell, just say thank you.

     Take the time to dance! Just dance out of sheer joy or dance until you feel the joy.  Either way your soul might just dance with you.  Just dance!

                                Two things I know for certain. Things change and I will be happy. EFB

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Live Your Life From The Inside Out

This will be a bit different from my other posts in that it is going to be more serious. Okay sort of. It will be real shit from my heart though. 
I have known loss in my life more than most people have. With those losses I have come to know you have to live your own life FROM THE INSIDE OUT.  You can’t live it based on what someone else wants you to be. Those people may not be in your life tomorrow.  If you have allowed someone to change you, it must be from the inside and it must be for the good. The people we allow to change us for the good may not even be the best people in our outside lives but we can and should grow from our experiences with them. 
The sum of who I am today, this very minute, is partly due to the people I have encountered and have chosen to learn from and have become a better me.  It sounds like a very worn out cliché but I really do like me.  I would like to have me as a friend.
Now that you know I like who I am, and my friends say they do, it amazes me that I am told I have to be someone else in the dating arena. I can’t be myself? WTF?  
I like me.
 You like me.
“Don’t be you”.
 “It intimidates men”.  
 Should I care? Wouldn’t that be like wearing a padded, push up bra and industrial strength Spanx ? You get alone and the real you comes bustin’ right out of there. What then?
I think this pretty much sums it up:   Here I am. I am blessed with some amazing people in my life who really, really love me and have made me a better person. If you want to come on along for the ride, be my guest, but you need to like me today and you have to promise to help make me a better me. There are no games. There is no bullshit. It is what it is. So where is CyberBoy when you need him?
Choose To Live Your Life From The Inside Out!

Sunday, September 25, 2011

The Last Half Journey: If it has tires or testicles there’s going to be t...

The Last Half Journey: If it has tires or testicles there’s going to be t...: I have been asked by several people what I am looking for in a man. My list is actually pretty short for what I would like. Haven’t found so...

If it has tires or testicles there’s going to be trouble or why I want a cyber boyfriend

I have been asked by several people what I am looking for in a man. My list is actually pretty short for what I would like. Haven’t found someone who could fulfill half the list yet let alone the entire thing.  I mean really, I am not asking for much. Top on the list is being able to make me laugh. Making me laugh means not laughing at you because of you thinking you are God’s gift to me. Excuse me.  I am the gift here, not you. 
Well, my life has been a bit interesting of late in the men arena.  I have been with (been with not as in been with in bed) a wide range of ages. Older, handsome, successful men who seemed to have a lot going for them and were very nice but just not a spark anywhere.  Much younger, sexy, good looking, (did I mention hot?) didn’t work out so well either.  Well, he fell asleep after having too much to drink.  So much for me not being able to hang with younger people.  I recall a Rolling Stones song, Satisfaction, as in “I can’t get no”.  Did I mention he was very sexy?  Oh wait. Have to move on to describing another man now. This man is nearer my age, but still a bit younger, who I tagged with the name Bad Boy the day I met him, is still in my life. He had the whole hot and sexy thing going on also. Oh my goodness did/does he ever!  I screwed that one up though. I took it to a friendship thing and we are still great friends and I talk to Bad Boy frequently.  As a matter of fact, my fantasies of him serve a great purpose at times and he still makes me laugh during our phone calls.
In addition to those three men there are other stories but I won’t bore you with them, or me again for that matter.  There was the guy who kept telling me all evening how he loved my hair and kept touching it. I guess I should be glad it wasn't a foot fetish.
That brings me back to what do I want besides the previously mentioned making me laugh.  I think the best thing for me would be a cyber boyfriend. Yep, embracing everything techy in my professional life (social media marketing) so may as well be embracing a man that way for my personal life. One thing I have said I do not want is someone up my ass all the time and wanting to spend every minute with me. Cyber boyfriend couldn’t do that. That is a priority on the list so that would be taken care of.  The introduction and initial “dates” could be via Twitter.
The progression of a “relationship” like that as I see it would be:
                                              1.       Sexting
                                              2.       Email
3.       Facebook chat
4.       Phone if things are going well and he isn’t getting too clingy
5.       The next really big step would be Skype. What would that be called, Skexing? I could even do the chair dancing I am learning for him via Skype.
The only thing missing from this is something with an on/off switch or hot and cold controls.  (Ladies if you don’t know about the hot and cold controls let me know)  I do really like kissing a lot so that wouldn’t be there with the cyber boyfriend. I do kiss my girlfriends, with eyes wide open though, so a bit of that would be taken care of. Damn, I like to hold hands too so have to figure that one out. 
I have been wanting a friend with benefits and that hasn’t worked out because inspite of what they say, men have a hard time with that so I think this is the next best thing and I wouldn’t even have to wash the sheets as often.
I tend to label my “boyfriends”, hate that word but don’t know what else to use, so you have to help me come up with a name for him.  Maybe just CyberBoy. That would fit with Bad Boy, Boy Toy, etc.  Comment with a good name for him and I will keep you posted on my social media experiment.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Pole Dancing? Chair Dancing?

I am in a special class to get fit.  No, it isn’t special ed.  It is a small, specialty fitness class that is not only getting us fit but working on being sensual and sexy – for ourselves. The instructor/owner of the fitness center is all about empowering women to feel good about themselves at any and all points in their lives. 

This class has given me a huge appreciation for women who work in “gentlemen’s clubs”. You see, it is a pole and chair dance class. The amount of fitness and strength this takes is so much more than I thought.  I have joked that if my current career doesn’t work out I will hit the clubs in Myrtle Beach with what I am learning.  Remember, I said I “joked” about it. There would have to be a bunch of alcohol to convince me to do that publicly.  Okay, maybe not a bunch of alcohol but there would have to be alcohol involved.

If we allow ourselves we can lose our sexual and sensual self. It isn’t about having someone in your life and it isn’t about pleasuring yourself.  We are a puritan society who says we must cover our bodies and certainly not touch ourselves or if we do you don’t talk about it. I seem to recall boys being told they would go blind if they did or something like that. Never heard that about girls but maybe the belief was girls didn’t do that.  I have digressed and need to get back on track with my beginning thoughts, so….

“Sexuality is a natural part of who we are. We are all sexual beings, although we express our sexuality differently as we grow up. Our sexuality includes our sense of gender, our body image, our sexual orientation, our sexual behaviors, our emotions, and the roles we play in relationships. It is much bigger than what we do and who we do it with.” That is according to Dr. Logan Lefkoff and I agree.  The big part of that statement for me is the body image part. This class certainly helps with that.

The pole and chair dance classes are not only for fitness but they give you permission to move your body in a sensual manner.  Some of us have way too many hang ups about that.  Put some music on at home and sway to it. Just move and pretty soon you may be feeling pretty darned sexy.  Oh yeah, close the blinds first.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Being Single Costs Alot More Money

One of the biggest issues I have with this being single and dating thing is how much it costs. $$$
I have to get myself back in shape physically so you pay for a fitness center. More on the fitness center in another post so be on the lookout for that one! I guess I need to be doing that for myself instead of some hot 36 year old though, right?  It is a great ego boost to have someone that age hitting on me blatantly and then following up.  Sex is a cardio workout, right?  Not saying I had sex with the 36 year old, just asking a question. Remember I don’t kiss and tell anyway.
It also costs more money at the hair salon. My stylist thinks I look better and younger with highlights. I suppose gray roots highlighting my scalp isn’t what she is talking about.  Hair has to be lightened to soften the wrinkles and then highlighted to frame my face or something like that. It may just be a ploy to get more money out of me. Now I look in the mirror and see those gray roots and have to make my appointments closer together. Hence, more money again. 
Then there is the whole Botox, Restylante, chicken fat injection thing.
Haven't resorted to that yet but not saying I won't. 
I had to buy going out, club appropriate clothes because pretty much all I had was professional, conservative clothes or slutty, trampy stuff I wore for my late husband behind closed doors. Because of the lower cut tops I had to buy new bras to pull those sinking tata’s up so I actually showed some cleavage. You have to have matching underwear for the bras. That is about $100 a set. Whew! Clothing budget went up.
I could save some money by not eating so much and not drinking so much wine but then that wouldn’t be any fun. I have great friends and I love sharing good food, good wine and good times with them. If it has added a few pounds I will remind myself I look better than some of the age 35 and under women I see. The other thing that I know for certain, without a reminder, is how precious those friends are and they love me even with the fluffiness. That doesn’t cost a thing and it is priceless! Here is to you my friends, let's eat more, drink more and laugh more.
Two things I know for certain, things change and I will be happy. ~ed brooks

Monday, September 5, 2011

Come along with me on the journey I am creating for a magical second half of my life.

2009 and 2010 were life changing years for me. I found myself unemployed from an industry I had a great passion for and the one true love of my life dying from a terrible disease.  I now have the opportunity to create the next chapters of my life using the wisdom and experiences of the previous chapters.

I am embarking on a new career in social media management and marketing with an AWEsome business partner. I believe the way this came about is truly divine intervention.  Nothing else could explain it. I wake each morning with enthusiasm and excitement about what we are doing. Who knew I could sorta, kinda be a geek. We have decided I am the social and networking diva of the company though. That means I get to go out and have fun, drink and meet new people.  Not a bad gig, right? Now you know what I am doing on the professional level with my journey of changes.

Another part of the journey is being a widow. That path doesn’t wake me with enthusiasm and excitement each morning but the path has to be walked anyway.  I had one of those story book loves that very few people get to have in their lives. God put the most amazing man in my life and he taught me more about love than imaginable. Dating again is interesting to say the least.  If you come on this journey with me I will probably provide some giggling and laughter for you while sharing these experiences. No worries for some, I don’t kiss and tell. Well, maybe I will tell but I will refrain from using names to protect the not so innocent.

Take my hand and walk along with me and we will start this journey.

Two things I know for certain, things change and I will be happy. ~ed brooks