Looking for love…💜

I have been wrestling with the idea of getting a dog or a cat ever since our old Bichon died. It’s a big commitment to be sure, and I’ll admit I’m hesitant because there’s a part of me that’s become downright possessive and protective about my time, my freedom AND my new floors..😉

This on again, off again, passive search for a furry companion includes logging onto ‘Pet Finder’ every so often to see if there’s a pooch or a kitty who’s clearly “calling my name.” I haven’t found one yet, but cannot help being drawn to these animals and their stories.

Pet Finder does a great job describing animals’ predilections, predispositions and personalities. A brutally clear portrait is painted and where possible, histories are transparently shared. This organization isn’t just about placing pets, they want the match-ups to be longterm, mutually beneficial and successful…. i.e. – no sugarcoating, no surprises.

I couldn’t help but compare Pet Finder to the dating site my daughter was recently using; Match.com. While the service for placing dogs puts value on being honest, the same can’t be said about the service for “placing” humans. Forget the bogus, inflated bios, you’re lucky if the photos even remotely resemble the folks searching for “authentic love.”

And heaven forbid you put anything in your profile that even hints of a less than perfect past or present day life…

When it comes to people, we simply aren’t touched by the hardships others have overcome in the same way we are when it’s an animal.  In the dating world there’s a whole different “guide book” being used.  Call it evolutionary prejudice, but we don’t want our mate to have, or to have had, any major issues. Bad prior relationships? Recently lost 100 pounds? Had to go back and live with mom and dad after a job loss? Yeah.. no thanks-  pass…swipe…delete. Whereas we are drawn in by an animal’s less than perfect history, we are often repelled or frightened by a human’s.

Of course I know there are differences between animals and humans..the biggest one being the baggage so many of us insist on carrying through life. By contrast, most animals move beyond pain and suffering with remarkable resolve.  A lot of love, newfound trust, a healthy environment, some habit breaking and most of these sweet souls are ready to slam the door on their old lives forever and move on to the new.

 In that respect, we could learn a lot from our four legged friends about what a fresh start actually requires.

But I also wish we lived in a world where grace and patience and understanding were extended as freely to humans as they are to animals .  Just think about what a relief it would be not to have to pretend to be so perfect, especially for those looking for love..

..and in the final analysis, isn’t that what we are all looking for?




photocredit:Orange County Humane Society,HappyTango,Adopt-a-Pet.com,Sticky Branding















Good vs. Great

I have cut myself off from most television “news” programming.  It’s too opinionated, there’s too much yelling and (most disturbingly) it’s often devoid of actual facts. Most of these shows have become nothing more than platforms for the hosts to build their careers on, and frankly the best example of this would be Bill O’Reilly.

Even as a conservative, I could never get on the O’Reilly train. The guy was an ego-maniac and a cocky, condescending blow-hard. I’m sure there were many times when his reporting was spot on, but I just couldn’t get past his in ‘your face’ sense of superiority.  His rudeness was off the scale.

Did the man sexually harass women in the workplace ultimately leading to his release from the network yesterday? I guess we will never really know. But the problem with being a self-absorbed narcissist is that people can well imagine that he is guilty as accused. It’s not a leap at all to think he could have engaged in that kind of behavior because it’s just one stepping stone away from his usual, overbearing “schtick.”

Bill O’Reilly is 67 years old and no doubt a very rich man; he’ll be OK- financially speaking.  But you have to admit this is an awful way to end a very successful career with your reputation shattered at your feet. There was another famous Bill (..Clinton) who was able to eventually redeem himself in the eyes of many after his disrespectful behavior towards women, so I guess there is a path forward if O’Reilly wraps himself in more and more and more charity work..

But the lessons about the dangers of an unchecked ego and the pursuit of greatness are always the same.  It reminds me of a quote I once read and never forgot:




photocredit:Mother Jones


Stuck in “before.”


I was watching a make-over show on TV this morning. The woman they were “working on” had her hair completely transformed by this super friendly and attentive hairdresser. When he was done highlighting and snipping and blowdrying, she looked absolutely amazing! As he slowly spun the chair around for the big reveal, he asked her what she thought.

The woman stared blankly at herself in the mirror for about 30 long seconds and then said “I don’t know, I guess I just need to get used to it.”

My jaw dropped..so did his.

Next was a session with a make-up artist and guess what, her reaction was the same.

Every one of these professionals was highlighting every single best feature this lady had, but it was as if she simply didn’t want to see them. This poor woman was completely invested in a lesser, smaller, more invisible version of herself…but her appearance was actually far from neutral.  She had become so sloppy, her image so off-putting, that it was actually pushing people away while simultaneously attracting negative attention..and as the show progressed, you could see that she was slowly coming to terms with the truth that she was doing it on purpose because she wanted to be left alone.


In the end, after buying all new clothes and getting plenty of friendly counseling, she seemed to have a breakthrough. Her smile was big and authentic and you could see that she was ready to commit to an exciting journey of self discovery and realization.  She was ready to become an active participant in her own life and open herself up to as of yet unknown experiences. She finally realized that her appearance could become a doorway instead of a wall- one through which she could head out into the world and invite new friends to come in as well. It was an awesome transformation both externally and internally; a rebirth more than a makeover. I felt moved, inspired and hopeful.

Don’t you just love a happy beginning?

You’ve got one life….






If aches and pains keep you up at night, please read this..

For the last four weeks, I have been sharing my pride and joy at being able to keep three small goals; taking all of my vitamins every morning, drinking 68oz of water each day and working out three times a week. I have been feeling so good about sticking to these resolutions, but there was one area in my life that was becoming increasingly unmanageable: pain at night.

I’ve had a pinched nerve in my elbow for a few years and depending on how I sleep it can hurt pretty bad, but lately the pain has been off the scale.  It wasn’t the traditional pain I was used to either, it was a deep aching from my shoulder to my finger tips..and sometimes in BOTH arms!

I told my husband last week-end that I was actually at a point where I didn’t want to got to bed anymore because I knew what was in store for me. I have an appointment scheduled with the doctor, but it isn’t for two weeks. I was starting to feel despondent.

So I hit the internet..and then it hit me.

The only thing that had drastically changed over the last few weeks was the water I was drinking..not just the amount, but at what time I consumed the most. You see I hate being inconvenienced by having to run to public bathrooms, so I did the bulk of my guzzling in the afternoon and especially in the evening when I was at home.  Long story short, not only was I having to get up at night to use the restroom, but I truly believe that my electrolytes were completely out of balance by the time I hit the sack.

So I decided to try something new; I would drink all of my water before 6pm (most of it before 3pm) and then have a small glass of gatorade with dinner for a quick infusion of electrolytes.

Guess what? I slept like a baby.

Could it really be that simple? Only time will tell.  I’m certainly no doctor but I am curious to see how the rest of this week unfolds.





The Diagnosis

What I was writing about two years ago…


woman-in-white-lying-against-white-sheets-with-headacheI couldn’t deny it any longer.  I had to face the fact that I had somehow developed allergies.   I never had issues with mold or grass or anything..until about ten days ago. Then out of nowhere, I suddenly developed a host of symptoms.

I complained of my daily head ache to my husband who reminded me that it was that time of year with all manner of trees blooming and pollen accumulating like dust. I talked to my mom about the pressure, the heavy-eyes, the fatigue and this yucky, unshakable feeling of malaise. She told me she had a friend who developed terrible allergies later in life.

Of course, no matter what I talk to my mother about, she always seems to have “a friend” curtis-house-firewho has personal experience with whatever we’re discussing.  These  mystery friends either have the illness I am worried about, had some horrible experience in…

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