An Odd Gratitude List


I’m so grateful for my crazy old dog, who glared at me when I wouldn’t give her yet another treat.

I’m grateful for my son, who isn’t speaking to me right now because I made him cut his mile-high hair.

What a blessing it is to think these things are problems. I’m grateful they don’t know what it is to really struggle.

Oh Joy! Another Thing my Mom was Right About.


“You’re not going to wear that out, are you?”¬† My mother, God rest, used to always ask me this as I got ready to go out.¬†I would roll my teen-age eyes and tell her she was just not with it.¬† That everyone wore stuff like this when they hung out with their friends.

If¬†she noticed I was wearing mascara, she’d say, “Why do you have all that black stuff around your eyes?”

Now, I look at my son with his mile-high hair and I think it would take a weed-whacker to cut it. 

The other day, I¬†was watching a show with my hirsute son, and I commented about a woman on a t.v. show, “Do you think she¬†meant to wear¬†that outfit?” My son rolled his eyes.

Shallow Thoughts du Jour


Always walk on the sunny side of the street.

Always turn that frown upside down.

Always eat dessert first.

Always wear a frill, bow or ribbon somewhere on your person – that way, it’s always a party!

Always play that funky music, grab a beach read, and slurp a slushie in summer!

Deep Thoughts du Jour


Never judge your teenager by how they treat you when they first wake up in the morning.

Never believe promises politicians make prior to being elected.

Never assume you know the whole story based on one person’s version of events.

Never think that “experts” are the only ones who know things.

Never give up, no matter what may be in front of you.

Senior Moment


I write for a lot of “senior citizens” markets, and consider myself something of a seniors’ advocate.¬† Just wanted to remind you to be good to the seniors in your life with a little story.

A few years ago, I developed a macular hole in my eye and needed surgery to correct it.  The recovery is actually more arduous than the surgery Рyou need to remain face-down for two weeks. 

The day after the surgery,¬†I walked into the doctor’s office for my follow-up visit like an extreme version of Groucho Marx, all bent like a pretzel.¬† Groaning in pain, I sat down, gazed at the floor and let out a heavy sigh.

All at once, I felt five hands patting me on the back.¬† Everyone else in the waiting room was¬†a senior, since the surgery I’d¬† had is usually performed on older patients.¬†

“You’ll get through it,” a lady’s voice said.¬† “It gets better, don’t worry,” a man said.

Then I heard what had to be the voice of an angel.¬† He said, “She’ll be okay.¬† She’s a redhead.¬† They’re feisty!”

Hadn’t even seen the doctor yet, and I felt better already.

Franklin Township, NJ. My Town. Best in America?!?


Franklin Township, New Jersey, where I live, was voted by Money Magazine as one of the best places to live in America.¬† Now, this is my town, and I love my community, but…

As Simon Cowell might say, if I’m being honest…

I really don’t get it.¬† And I live here!¬† It’s not a bad place to live, or I wouldn’t live here.¬† But we’ve got some issues up in this burg.

The things you hear about in¬†movies, like drive-by shootings, bank robberies, street gangs… we’ve actually got all that.¬† And more!¬† It doesn’t happen every day, but it does occur frequently enough that we really don’t take casual strolls to walk the dog at night.¬† Not even down our own street.

At our town’s high school prom last year, there was¬†full-scale chaos as the students and parents fought the police.¬† I mean, with fists.¬† Not, like,¬†the debate team.

There’s a young man on trial now for killing a teen who wanted to be a member of the Bloods.¬† When he didn’t pass the “G-check” – a code members of the gang use to¬†identify other members¬†– he was shot to death.

This happened at our Little League Park.

95% of the people in our town are good people just trying to do the right thing, pay the bills, raise a family.  But that small, negative element just makes it hard for the rest of us.

If we were to win an award it would have to be for our spirit.¬† There are wonderful people here who really reach out to neighbors in need.¬†If anything, Franklin should¬†win the “we keep going in the face of adversity” award.

The Dog-ter Will See you Now


Root canal, dry socket, codeine.¬† Not necessarily words you want in your life!¬† Years ago, I had a root canal and was given pain meds, which didn’t sit well in my stomach.

Scene:  Me in bathroom, having just prayed to the porcelain god, in fetal position on floor, moaning in pain, crying for sweet release from this mortal coil.  I am facing toward the toilet, back to door.

Cut to:  My border collie/black lab mix, Sheena ambling in, head tilted, tail all a-wag.

Fade to:  Sheena sitting down next to me, furry face placed gently on top of my right cheek.  The exact spot where I just had the root canal.  Fade out.

This master manipulator, this loofah-stealer, so well-versed in co-opting half my dinner, did not ask for a treat.¬† She didn’t try to nudge me toward the snack drawer.¬† She stayed with me,¬†even though I offered nothing in return.

Dogs know where the need is.  They see with their hearts.  Lesson we should all learn!