Weekend Coffee Share, The Animals Have it

Welcome to my Weekend Coffee Share, hosted by Natalie the Explorer. My post is not a morning post like usual, since I’m incorporating yoga in my Saturday routine now. It was another green tea day…it seems to go better with namaste and healthy living. Pull up a chair and your beverage of choice, no judgement!

It being afternoon, I’ll share some photos of my afternoon jaunt with my man, Chris, to the local zoo. I’m currently on a cool off break.

Coffee? What’s that? My afternoon mango icie.
85 degree weather didn’t stop us! Look at this cute little ham!
Anteater.
Snack, please!

We got some really nice shots of the animals! My boyfriend got the tiger photo. His enthusiasm for the animals is quite catchy. I feel young again. Such fun!

So, that was my fun stress-reliever in a Saturday afternoon. How is your weekend?

Weekend Coffee Share, a Word

Welcome to my Weekend Coffee Share, hosted by Natalie the Explorer. I haven’t drunk coffee all week, so today I’m having my half-caff hazelnut. What’s your favorite beverage for a chat with a friend?

Due to a temporary issue with focus ( yes, despite the coffee), I want to do some wordplay. I am a middle school English teacher, after all . So, using today’s prompt from Ragtag Community, here is what I have, using the word ‘plate’:

Today

I feel like a car run out of gas

And I just want to pass the plate

It feels good doing nothing

And sleeping in late

I just want to put my feet up and rest

To realize I’ve tried my best all week,

So I’ve earned this right to not overthink,

To breathe in the sunshine and soak in

The cool breeze and warm rays.

Weekend Coffee Share 4/2

Welcome to my Weekend Coffee Share, hosted by  Natalie the Explorer. It’s a Tazo Green Tea day again! I may have a coffee morning tomorrow. We all have our preferences! If we were having coffee ☕, I’d need to relax and have a laugh.

This week I’ve been trying to finish a lot of things with my school yearbook, and it has kept me busy, busy. That’s okay; I’ve made some rounds and talked with many more people, students as well, which is kind of fun! I’ve been at an almost frenetic pace, though. Next week we also start a state writing test.

I’m too busy to stop and stress over it, though. My boyfriend and I have also been planning a cruise vacation for June. Exciting! I’m not sure I want to swim with pigs though. I may have to just observe and laugh at my boyfriend’s antics!

Last weekend, we had a little drive to St. Augustine to visit Castillo de San Marco and have a great dinner. I was slightly distracted by the idea of the floating tiki bar though!

They float on by and raise a ruckus…makes me want to swim over, LOL!

The fort has been here for centuries and is interesting to see. The weather was beautiful! It made for a great walk and dinner date.

My sun hat is being put to good use again!

We are expecting rain today. I had been planning to take my car in today but have gotten mixed up in the things I want to get done. Go, go, go! The challenge of my goals is fueling my energy. When I got home yesterday I was soooo tired that I ordered through Door Dash! It was healthy, though.

One must rest to rejuvenate, though. I slept in late and decided my car could wait till next weekend. I am going to dinner with the boyfriend later and we should be hanging out with another couple, as it’s his friend’s birthday. It should be fun, it always is. 🙂

Have a great weekend!

Weekend Coffee Share, 3/26/22

Welcome to my weekend coffee share, hosted by Natalie the explorer. And I am relaxing after having slept in late when my back started screaming at me. My drink this morning is a Tazo Zen tea, a green tea which actually does have caffeine but not as much as a coffee would.

Maybe it seems strange that I am not drinking coffee during a weekend coffee share, but I am just trying lots of different things lately for my health and my stress levels. Both of these are intricately related at any rate.

My weekend started out pretty low-key, and I was a bit tired after my work week, so I ordered in for dinner, and just laid around with my dog and later watched Netflix. I got to see my son playing with the dog which was fun to watch for a while, before he went out to dinner.

Spring is such a beautiful time of year, but I’ve been overwhelmed with memories of last year. I’m trying to remind myself of how far things have turned around with my son and my family, and if the people who helped me through those times. It is a work in progress. I certainly have plenty to keep me busy, but it is tiring me out.

This is just where I am at the moment, I don’t mean to complain! My boyfriend and I are planning a vacation for this summer, and that has been fun to plan. The end of my school year is approaching, so that’s a good thing. At the moment I am contemplating what my exercise of the day will be, and it is sure to involve some yoga, because maybe that will help my back. I probably need a good amount of stretching.

It seems that pain is quite a distractor, and my teaching job requires a huge amount of multi-tasking. I must have pulled my back in the last day or two, becuase yesterday at work was rough during my classes, when two kids need help at the same time and often interrupt each other. They say we must train them not to do that, but it is a process that needs so much repetition. Anyhow, my main goal is not to let pain stop me from moving. A physical therapist once said that mine is a stability problem and not a mobility problem. Sounds believable, so I plan to do more yoga at home with an online site called Yoga Collective.

I’m still finishing up the audible version of Wuthering Heights. Bronte definitely created some twisted, messed up characters and relationships. It isn’t a book to rush through, though I feel the best parts were earlier in the book.

The sunshine is inviting, so maybe I’ll heed that call! Have a great weekend everyone, and a great week to follow!

Weekend Coffee Share, 3/19/22

Welcome to my Weekend Coffee ☕ Share, hosted by Natalie the Explorer. I’m sitting in my garage having Tazo green tea, though it may be a little too warm for that. The morning started out around 60 degrees, but it will be upwards of 80 degrees later.

I’m helping my mother with a yard sale today, though I admit we got started a little late. She had some buyers when I went to walk the dog, so there’s that! Bixby enjoyed our walk, and I always enjoy the view of some of our beautiful trees. I’ve taken him on a few extra walks this week!

Spanish moss is common here, but I love this tree!

This past week has been Spring break for me, and I’ve slept in every day. Catching up on my test is one goal I have met! I went to the Celtic Fest with my boyfriend Sunday as planned, and it was enjoyable as always! The temp was below 60, but our Florida sun emboldened all of us to dance around and enjoy ourselves. I don’t know about you, but I consider 60 to be chilly if the sun’s not out.

Wednesday evening I had an interview on Meet the Author podcast, and it was exciting! I think I found a few new readers, something every author wants. I need to get over ‘imposter syndrome’ and things like this sure help! The playback of the interview is available if you’re interested: https://m.youtube.com/channel/UCjn4IXRvc7AhhDXTVeqp5DQ

There were some appointments I took care of this week, but Thursday was friend’s day at Another Broken Egg, where I had a huge waffle with fruit, eggs, and bacon. Sometimes it’s fun to break the rules, and it was great to catch up. There were 6 of us, all who at one time were co-workers in the public education system. Now, my Spring break is winding down. One day I sat in the sun and did some writing. I don’t really celebrate too hard anymore. 🙂

In my world, the state has been against enforcing masks for a while. Our school board no longer requires it. I rarely wear one anymore, though I always have one with me. Talking and teaching in a mask made my jaw feel sore. Hopefully the numbers don’t get scary again, but it’s not surprising if they do. It’s amazing that my mom got through COVID 6 weeks ago, and I didn’t get it from her.

Buying gas at 4.09 a gallon the other day was a treat. In my side of town, it is 4.29 to 4.39, though I should check because they seem to increase the price on the weekends. I feel for the people in Ukraine, but I rarely watch the news, as it doesn’t help my anxiety level. I do read online sometimes.

That’s about all there is going on until I go back to work teaching on Monday. Have a great weekend, everyone!

To join the Weekend Coffee Share, read Natalie’s Coffee Share post at https://natalietheexplorer.home.blog/2022/03/18/these-b-w-murals-revive-history/and include your post link after clicking the In-links bar.

Weekend Coffee Share, Hello Women’s History Month!

Welcome to my Weekend Coffee Share, hosted by Natalie the Explorer. In honor of the start of Women’s History Month, I’d like to share some of my sentiments, now that I am a maturing woman.

Top-this year. Bottom-age 23.

A smart, classy woman never… Runs out of Advil or lip gloss.  💋 Runs out of red wine. Runs out of vodka .  Eats two meats without greens. Let’s a man get her red in the face. Hollers back at an angry superior. Begs a man to stay. Let’s a man treat her like dirt. Never, ever gives up on her loved ones.

She always–Wounds her enemies with kindness and sugar-dripping sarcasm. Appreciates being called passive aggressive. It indicates one has wit. Tempers her panic with poise (yes, it’s possible). Requires as much honesty as she gives. Is honest about her quirks and short-comings, seeks to improve them, dusts herself off and continues without shame. Seeks comfort over fashion, and remembers her moisturizer and eyebrows. 🌺

Weekend Coffee Share, Circuitous Tangents

Welcome to my 2/26 Weekend Coffee Share, hosted by Natalie the Explorer.

With a high above 80 degrees yesterday, I found myself searching Amazon for cotton, summer shirts. I don’t know why my search would yield long sleeved tees or rayon-spanx mix shirts, but I had to sort through all of that. Sleeveless might be the way to go. I just think it took longer than necessary. The weather being as it is in Northeast Florida, I have to prepare for the personal summer moments, LOL!

My dog had been limping for about a day. We were all a bit worried. Mom said he had been barking quite loudly when he was in the back yard the other night. However, I’ve seen that he always seems to be a little careful with one leg over the other. I felt both of his paws, no flinching on his part. When I touched further up his leg, he did flinch and growled a little, that curmudgeonly old man (especially in the evening, I suspect maybe his eyesight isn’t great at that time). You’ve seen my dog. He looks like a 2-3 year old dog.

However, Bixby has been with us for close to eight years and was supposedly three years when we got him. He still prances about through the house and barks madly at anyone passing our house. Seeing him limp is a sad sight, but this morning, after a little time in the back yard sniffing and exploring, he came back in without a limp. It is my guess that he had a past injury and something made him more mindful of it and careful of that leg. Yes, a psychosomatic response in a dog. It must be possible, right? Or maybe it is arthritis.

I sympathize with that dog, and I intend to make him feel loved for all of his days. I understand the feeling of unexplained pain as an arthritis sufferer and try to focus on the positives in life. It has affected me lately, perhaps due to changes in barometric pressure. Ah, the weather will be cool again next week. Up and down. We can handled it.

It also seems to be a time of household item replacements, most recently, the dryer. Thank goodness, the teacher raise has gone through in my area. We certainly deserve it. I do not agree with everything our state legislature tries to push on us in regards to education, but I plan to give it a few more years. This is year 22 for me. Things have drastically changed. Someone recently posted on Facebook, “Cops don’t need more training, they need support.” I disagree. They need both, just as teachers do. We complete Youth Mental Health training every few years and are not always supported as we should be. Cops can choose to put a person in jail, or get them placed in Mental Health care. They often fumble when put in a mental health crisis situation.

This is not intended to slam police officers. They have a highly important job just as teachers do. Some would say if parents taught morals, then a cop’s job wouldn’t be so hard. Yes, wouldn’t that solve everything? However, our society is as it is. So how do we address it? We work on this together and prepare to deal with the results of a broken world. We handle it with care. I don’t have the answers, but I do think mental health preparedness is a priority for any public service personnel.

It seems I got on a tangent there. The COVID era has caused a lot of problems. Hopefully, we can all work together to make the world better for our children. They’ll be taking care of us one day.

COVID-19 Era continues…

So, that’s what’s going on in my corner of the world: weather, summer-on-my-mind, dogs, and my views on dealing with the state of the world. As my favorite quote by T.S. Eliot says, “How shall I spit out the butt-ends of my days and ways?”

Weekend Coffee Share,  Living Beneath My Means

Welcome to my Weekend Coffee Share,  hosted by Natalie the Explorer.  Thanks for visiting! It’s a green tea day for me and warm out, but come along and enjoy your favorite daytime beverage! If we were having coffee, I’d tell you what’s on my mind.

I’ve been testing my students throughout last week, and students overall are getting excited for the holidays. Needless to say, last week was tiring. So, I didn’t do much in my writing life, but I got to meet with my News Club kids, and they made great strides!

One of the rewards this week offered was the most beautiful sunset after Monday night’s club meeting. (I wait until the last student gets picked up).

Friday, my car began lurching on the way to work. It was very slow on the pickup and shaky. I stubbornly kept driving to work and carefully drove it home that evening. My son and his dad called around about where to take it in. At 1 o’clock I took it to the Toyota dealership. Sometimes I avoid then, as they cost more and always suggest I trade it in.

The last thing I want is a new car payment. I paid it off only two years ago! Now’s the time to save up for retirement; I certainly need to be happy with less. I want more experiences (travel) and less things!

Thus is my quest to move toward minimalism. I told the mechanic I used to drive a used Toyota Camry until it reached 200,000 miles. The current one only has 103,000 miles and is a Corolla. I think 200,000 is a great goal!

We’ll see if my methods help me save. I plan to retire before age 60. I have a few years to go….

I’m willing to listen to and entertain any wise minimalist ideas you all may have. Enjoy the rest of your weekend!

Weekend Coffee Share, Honor Thyself

Welcome to my Weekend Coffee Share, hosted by Natalie the Explorer. This week brought a short work week, something most of us in the education field have welcomed! It’s below 70 today, which is cooler than it was yesterday, so I am enjoying some hot coffee!

This past Thursday, besides being Veteran’s day, was also the 7 year anniversary of bringing home our dog, Bixby, from the Humane Society. With a sullen teen/young adult in the family who didn’t talk to us much at that time, my mother and I were thrilled to bring a furry toddler home that wagged its tail anytime we came home! My son has even built a bond with this enthusiastic canine. He has changed our lives.

I am constantly reminding myself to love my life and where I am right now, instead of jumping ahead to the future and looking for guarantees; It’s hard. However, life is better than it had been months ago. My family is in a good place, my son is doing well, and I have steady employment. I won’t focus on the stresses of my job at this moment. 🙂

Seen at the mall last night. Too soon, too soon.

Still, the season may be affecting my moods a little bit. I am fortunate that I could reunite with my old friend/boyfriend who listened through a lot of my hardships this summer, and we enjoy spending time together, but I think back to last year’s Thanksgiving holiday; I have memories and start thinking how different this year will be. I am mindful that I am not alone but sometimes wonder why. Would I be okay if I was alone? So I am seeking more activities to do in my spare time and hopefully to meet more like-minded people. You can’t just rely on one person.

However, I am quite close to my mother, and my son and I are getting along well, even though he isn’t predisposed to being loquacious. I’m still investing in his well-being though. I took him to the mall yesterday to pick up something his dad ordered for him, then we ate in the Food Court. I had honey bourbon chicken with rice and veggies. It was tasty, but maybe not so healthy. I was glad we did something together, as my weekday life keeps me so busy right now. I am really hoping and praying for a teacher raise soon as I want to focus after school time on healthy living next year instead of seeking to supplement my pay.

The approach of the holidays also has me looking back on this year. This year reminded me that anything can change on a dime. I suppose we just have to see the silver lining in those changes. I mean, my son did change for the better. His dad is now in the picture for him, and though those dynamics sometimes stress me out, I do not have to live with him anymore, and my son is doing well living in my home again but being able to spend time with his dad weekly.

Sometimes I write in a gratitude journal in the morning. Yes, I have to actively practice gratitude, mindfulness, listen to a pain podcast sometimes to keep the negativity at bay. Gratitude can retrain the brain., but I’ve also learned to stay away from people who increase my negative thoughts. Trying to honor myself. Holidays can stress me out, but I am going to plan some low-stress time with loved ones. Then, I can be grateful for the time I have with them.

There’s my holiday survival plan. Thank you for reading! What’s your plan?

Weekend Coffee Share, Celebrate Life!

Welcome to my Weekend Coffee Share,  hosted by Natalie the Explorer. I’m drinking hazelnut half-caff on the porch in 80 degree morning weather. The sun feels good to me, and Bixby explores the backyard.

It has been a week of on-off sciatica. A worrisome thing, as I had a date to see Hamilton last night, and by no means would I be wearing sneakers to that event! My friend/ boyfriend of years ago (whom we joke is ‘recycled’) did such a sweet thing for me and got us tickets.

This show is amazing, and I survived a night in high heels and a new dress I had bought on clearance at Penney’s. It sort of felt like prom night. 🙂 I haven’t been to live theatre in a while.

It is probably always a packed out show at Hamilton. The actors, costumes, and the music are phenomenal, and love the historical back story and the rao melodies the actors sing in. It was sort of like spoken word. What a treat! I did not dwell on the sciatica. Of course I would never let it stop me!

Some things, with time and age, become a fact of life. There are still many things I want to do, so I can’t let a little discomfort stop me! Yoga and stretches can sometimes help, and I wear sneakers to work almost daily. Have to keep going!

I’ve been reading books and using an app for a few years on managing pain. I’d love to study the science or psychology of pain. I suppose I am, in a way. Calming the brain’s reactions seems important, so I am trying some meditation videos. It would be interesting to work in this field in my retirement. Food for thought….

At any rate, never stop, manage the pain, don’t let it stop you, and don’t let age dictate what you can or can’t do would be mottos of a lovely man who passed away this month. He may have been in his eighties. He was a great mentor for my son and would have him over to help with yard work before he got full-time employment.

His service was today, which I viewed online. I know that’s not quite the same, but it brought me a nice pause to reflect on what he added to our lives. A celebration of his life, as it should be. It makes me want to stay active and just live life. Truly, would should all celebrate life and share our talents to help or inspire others.

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