Selling your home isn’t for the weak of heart part 10 and writing challenge day 4

A woman picked up the radon test this afternoon. She says the home inspector will have the report and it could be six days before the report is finalized. This inspector doesn’t typically take this long but it is what it is. This waiting is annoying especially if the buyer decides to withdraw her offer because we’ll have to go through all of this crap again. Keep your fingers crossed.

Last night, I hosted a pre-graduation party for a great friend of ours. When we initially met him, he always ordered lemonade. We all thought he was underage but he wasn’t. He really enjoyed lemonade. So we did lemon-themed gag gifts. It was a memorable evening, that I’m sure none of us will forget.

Unfortunately, I overcooked again so we have lots of leftovers.

Writing challenge:

I’m doing the Julie Duffy story-a day challenge in addition to my personal one. I really want to get myself back on track by writing everyday. It’s easy to get caught up in the other crap.

Macavity and I have spent quality time together at the card table. I didn’t fold it after last night. I decided to do another tarot reading and then write there. He kept me company at first by watching and then snoozing. I don’t get it three car beds, the couch, our bed and he slept on the table.

Now I’m writing and he’s playing a mouse game on the iPad He does enjoy electronics. When he gets tired of the game he’ll watch the wildlife dvd. I think he misses Yeatsie.

There was a small yellow tabby in the corner cage with gold eyes in the pet store alone. Two other cages had black cats, one with white paws and the other with a white spot on his chest. They were very timid when I went to pat them unlike the yellow tabby. He bit my hand. I knew then he had spunk and I like that. He’s go personality. He came home with us a few days later. I would have taken him that day but the shelter was so slower than death processing his adoption. His shelter name was Zak, he became Macavity in our family.

Story-a-Day with Julie Duffy

Day 3 – Matthew Salesses Looks Back


This prompt comes from thinking about point of view and you could use it to write the whole story in two parts.

For the first part create a character who does something that you did during that week: e.g. go to the grocery store and you buy oranges. now. Now write about it in the third-person perspective and fictionalize it.

In the second part move your story 10 years into the future. Change perspective to make it a first person perspective. And it turns out that that non-momentous moment from your life (e.g. going to the super supermarket and buying oranges) ended up being extremely important to this character.

Don’t forget to include how the world has changed from 10 years ago to now and how the character’s world has changed, how they think of the world, and how they move through the world differently.


Jude hated grocery shopping for his mother but she made him feel so miserable when he suggested having her groceries delivered. Times have changed since Covid, why couldn’t his mother. He resented her being manipulative but didn’t know how to change things without having to get his own place. He didn’t make enough money working at the Arcade center but it did give the time needed to develop game apps so he could market them. He knew one of the games was going to make him wealthy.

He pulled the list out of his pocket, apples, butter, and Poise. He didn’t mind the apples or the butter but the adult diapers made his so uncomfortable because the cashier would always try to hide a smirk. He bet they made jokes about once he left the store. It was so embarrassing. Why couldn’t she have them delivered?

The apartment overlooks the Hudson River. It’s mind boggling. I keep wanting to pinch myself that I scored a job at Sony’s signature headquarters on Madison Avenue. I never dreamed I would be living in the big apple. No more minimum wage struggles.

Mom on the other hand still lives in Hoboken, New Jersey in the house I grew up in. I’m near enough but not that close. Perfect! I see her every other weekend, that works for me.

I opened my computer and then Amazon. I scroll to women incontinence products. Mom may resist coming into the internet world but not me. I look at the things, I wrote down after our conversation earlier, and clicked deliver. No more smirks or turned heads or chuckles when I leave.

I closed out Amazon and put my goggles on for testing of the latest game.

290 w/c

Story-a-day with Julie Duffy

Hills as green as emeralds sounds cliché but I’m at a loss for a better word to describe what’s before me as the car maneuvered the narrow roads. I wish he would slow down a bit so I could breathe in all the amazing vegetation but I’m sure his schedule isn’t as flexible as mine. Heck, a month ago mine wouldn’t have been either.

I can still see her face when I walked into her office and said I need two months off. She looked at me like I had two heads, went back to writing like I wasn’t even there. I said, “I’m serious, I need two months off.”

” No.”

“I figured it was a long shot but I had to ask.”

“Are we through, I have to get this done.?”

“No, I’m not done. I quit.”

The words I quit surprised me too but once I uttered them I felt like a weight had been lifted. I set my office keys on her desk, returned to my cubicle and then grabbed my personal stuff. I waved to a couple of my friends and left. I decided to drop them an email later because right now I wanted to get the travel agent’s office before closing.

I asked her to book me a trip to where W.B. Yeats and the artist Jack Keats found their inspiration.  The incredible scenic beauty of Sligo, Leitrim and Roscommon are calling me. I read somewhere, these parts are known as Yeats’ Country. One of my favorites is the Stolen Child and it’s said that Glencar Waterfalls was the inspiration. The agent said Ireland has a lot of waterfalls, Glencar isn’t the tallest but it is one of the prettiest especially after it has rained.

Pretty is an understatement. The green smells sweeter than moss after a rain. I already feel like the green air has healed me from all the city toxicity. I will never underestimate the infinite vitality of green or Ireland again. I should have come sooner.

337 w/c

Glencar Waterfall, Leitrim, Ireland

Story-a-Day with Julie Duffy-1

Jack saw the cabin’s red metal roof among the white pines. How long had it been there? He had explored these woods for years but had never seen the cabin before. He was curious why there wasn’t any road access to reach it. “Curiosity killed the cat but satisfaction brought it back.” How many times had his Gram said that to him? Gram was the queen of clichés but he loved her anyway.

Jack decided there had to be an access road somewhere in these woods. He glanced at his compass and noted the direction of the cabin. He recorded the coordination on his cell phone before setting off. The pine smell reminded Jack of his grandparent’s tree farm. He helped his Grandpa prune the trees, thin out the weak ones and fertilize them. It was their livelihood.

He heard the water roaring in the distance. He usually avoided the gorge because he wasn’t comfortable with water ever since he slipped off one the rocks and fell into the rushing water. Grandpa pulled him out but not before he had been pulled under a few times. He avoided the river ever since.

He paused to check his coordinates and the time. Jack knew the woods were different at night and that a lot of people became nervous with all the animal sounds. That didn’t faze Jack. He chuckled remembering when Alice jumped into his arms when the coyote bayed a couple weeks ago. She smelled of lilac and her hair was silky against his chin. Jack wouldn’t mind having that happen again.

The water snapping against the rocks prodded Jack into the moment. He wandered along the riverbank looking for a shallow area to cross. There was no way, he was going into the water again. He stumbled upon the bridge. That wasn’t there the last time he was here with Grandpa. Who built the bridge?

He stepped on the bridge but then looked down. He couldn’t stop shaking. He felt nauseous. He quickly leapt and slunk to the ground. This is ridiculous, he thought. He’s a grown man acting like a coward. The bridge looked secure, no broken planks or missing rails. Jack shrugged. He stood up and stiffened his back as he looked across the bridge.

One step at time, Jack vowed. He wouldn’t look down just straight ahead. Grandma always said his curiosity would get him in trouble but it also helped him grow. Slow breaths, Jack said over and over as he slowly inched forward over the gorge on the bridge. He could see the cabin clearer now in the opening.

6 minute challenge

I’m a bit late to the challenge but I find it interesting. I especially enjoyed the picture of the two cats snuggling. Okay, here goes.

“It’s okay, she tends to be quite grumpy without her coffee. I’m used to the human”

“She’s scary.”

“But once she’s put the coffee on brewing, she gets us breakfast and then adjourns to her chair. I’m not sure what she does with her eyes closed and the deep breaths.”

” I don’t know what she’s doing either. Breakfast was tasty. I’m going to stay with you until she’s drank her coffee, maybe even a second cup.”

“Once you get used to our human Mom, you’ll find she’s the best. It’s so much nicer here than the shelter place I was before..”

Yeah, I know what you mean. It wasn’t nice there at all. I’m really glad you’re my big brother, now.”

“I’m really happy you’re my little sister.”

154 words / 6 minutes

Selling your home isn’t for the weak of heart, and the day’s plan.

I made a bacon, {saved 4 strips from last night’s BLT’s) pepper, fresh picked basil frittata topped with Mexican cheese to begin this day. The protein was great, so tasty. Added bonus, breakfast is already made for tomorrow. Woohoo.

The inspector for proof of occupancy came today. Almost made it through unscathed, we need to change one of our outlets to a gfi because it’s within six feet of our sink. Thankfully, he doesn’t charge to come back and check once it’s done. This worrying about cost involved is stressful. So looking forward to getting out of this money pit. Still no communication from the buyer’s realtor after the other inspector’s report.

Using zoom last night had some quirks initially but hopefully we have it all ironed out for next weeks writer’s meeting. Attendance was good and hopefully it will continue growing with additional interest. The format works well. Initially, I hated the online but I will say hanging out in my jams does have advantages. There’s also another factor too, once I’m in Vegas this will be my connection. Or maybe it will be time to walk away. Let someone else deal with the stress of micro-managers and people who pointedly make others uncomfortable. Lots of decisions.

I went through some more magazines, recycled them. Trash day was today and I filled it to the brim. This tossing and giving away isn’t as painful as it was. Though, I will say selling things on facebook marketplace is a total frigging waste of time. We have this large safe. I put it on there. I’ve gotten more hit on messages than any serious inquiries about the safe. It’s clear people are obnoxious. I wouldn’t waste someone’s time with stupid messages but apparently that’s not true of others.

I feel bad for Macavity, Vic grabbed the vacuum and he vanished. Poor baby connects vacuum with cat carrier. One of my criteria’s on our next place is minimal rugs. He doesn’t mind the broom or dust mop.

Olyvia, my granddaughter, and her competition dance team received highest overall score. Way to go girls! They have another competition this Saturday at 11:30am. I am so looking forward to being able to see her team compete once we’re there. She’s been dancing since she was two. Oh my, the girls were so adorable. They laid hula-hoops on the floor so they knew where to be. The end of the year recital is June 5th, I’m hoping we’ll be there in time.

A good shot of whiskey would have tasted pretty good a couple times this week but I know how easily I could slide back to my old crutch. I know I can’t drink all the stress away anymore than I could drink away an unhappy marriage. Like Justin and Chris, I’ve tried Jack, Jim, Jameson, Evans, Makers, and Crown… nothing took away the pain and unhappiness. I can’t drink the stress away but I can cleanse my space with lots of sage.

Did you know Beltane is on Saturday. Hard to believe it’s almost May. Beltane is a Celtic word which means ‘fires of Bel’ (Bel was a Celtic deity). It is a fire festival that celebrates of the coming of summer and the fertility of the coming year. “Emma Restall Orr, a modern day Druid, speaks of the ‘fertility of our personal creativity’. (Spirits of the Sacred Grove, pub. Thorsons, 1998, pg.110). She is referring to the need for active and creative lives. We need fertile minds for our work, our families and our interests.”

My attempt to write 30 poems in April went awry because of all the stress. I can’t let this crap keep ruining my life. I’ve been thinking a lot about how much this whole house situation has derailed me emotionally and add in some other additional stressors I need to focus on me. I agree with Emma, creativity has been lacking.

So I thought I would try 31 micro-fiction pieces for May. I’ve been scribbling in my journal a lot so taking it a notch shouldn’t be to challenging. I’ve already placed new salt on my altar and have candles ready for Saturday night’s fire ritual. I haven’t packed my tarot cards, a reading is overdue.

May 1st… time to replenish me…

May Day/ Beltane celebrates the start of the bright half of the year. One of four main festivals of Celtic spirituality, it’s a time to make merry.

Selling your home isn’t for the weak of heart part 7

We spent 4 hours clearing the crawl space/ slash 6 feet by 8 feet area which is under the concrete steps coming into the house and underneath the stairs that go up to the main floor. There’s a lot of storage in this house which I’m going to miss immensely. I’ve stored Christmas and Halloween in that space. Yes, I have a lot of seasonal decorations. What a time consuming event but for me the most frustrating part was the previous owners left 30 cans of paint underneath there. I never needed to get that far back under the stairs so I never touched them. I should have left them for her to clean out but I’m not that kind of person. I feel like a maid… I swear once I relocate I am not going to clean for at least a month maybe two. I’m so over this. Cleaning like you don’t live here.

While I was cleaning, I redid the caulk on the showers, tubs and toilets so they’re all spifty again. I can’t help but wonder if the roles were reversed would she be as nice. Probably not.

After meeting her for the first time , it’s reasonably clear that my gardens will never be cared for like I do. It’s sad…. no heartbreaking better sums it up. I feel like I’m leaving my babies behind with a neglectful caretaker or questionable caretaker. I wish I could say the perspective owner made a good impression but she didn’t.

The man who came for the home inspection was nice enough but the other man for pest inspections was another matter. He was rude as all get out. He walks up the driveway and the first thing he says you have carpenter bees. Well, yes they are flying around but I don’t have any holes on my house but my neighbor does. Our houses are attached in clusters of four. She has huge holes in her trim boards and the bees are always going in and out. I’ve spoken to her about the bees and she’s ignored me. So we get to pay for an exterminator because of her. He also said there were carpenter ants. I asked him where and he didn’t answer that either. Moments like that, I can understand why people give exterminators bad raps. He’s a classic example of TOTAL DICKHEAD. I’m not even convinced we have carpenter ants, I’ve been treating around our house for 5 years now with Terro Ant traps that you stick in the ground by the foundation. I have them every 12 inches in the back and the granulated powder in the front.

We spoke to an exterminator friend who told us it is challenging to eliminate the bees and ants with connected homes. Unfortunately, his company doesn’t do our development because the houses are connected and they can’t guarantee their result. So we’re going to have to find someone that does do the work and hopefully reasonably priced because cash wise we don’t have a lot to spare either.

This house is the nightmare that keeps on giving. The roller on the garage door broke on Saturday. Naturally, the door is heavy and requires a larger wheel and the box stores don’t carry it so we had to order one online. It doesn’t come in until May 6th – 11th. So we don’t dare use the door very often except to get the trash bin out because don’t want more damage if it actually falls.

I was so proud of Macavity today. He sat on my lap on the front step while the people went inside the house and then went back inside his carrier listening while Vic, Stephen ( our realtor) and I talked. Not a peep. He’s such a trooper. People under estimate how stressful all of the in and out is involved in selling a house for a pet.

This losing streak continues. Vic won two games of Scrabble, three games of cribbage and two of Yahtzee. GRRRRR…

On a high note, our youngest granddaughter has been invited to the gifted program in her school district. We’re so proud of her. She’s already way ahead of her grade level and finds it boring to do the same work as her classmates. Hopefully, this will help balance things out for her.

So far no calls from the mother-in-law since she dumped the last crap on Vic. I’m only looking at two bedrooms, two baths for us. Gotta have a guest room for Olyvia. Not going to have room for any long term guests.

Monday Limericks

It’s Monday and limerick time. I’m giving you three prompts this week. Unfortunately, I’ve got to have some more shoulder surgery, so I’ll be out of action for a while. But I’d love to see your limericks so please send them in to give me a smile. I’ll publish them all when I’m back blogging again.

My limericks are all dedicated to our three deceased grandchildren, Samantha, Logan and Johnny. We miss them immensely.


The Loss of a Grandchild.

Pain has filled my life, way too often
The anguish never seems to soften
Regardless of my age
I suffer the rampage
silently wishing …no more coffins


Endless Heartbreak

Everyone says, give it time you’ll heal
I don’t want time, I want a new deal
I want to see them play
Not be stolen away
I never had the chance to appeal


It Doesn’t Get Easier.

The nurse hopes for a heroic verse
Knowing nothing said could make it worse
The hand clenching a cross
knowing words can’t ease loss
The nurse silently uttered a curse.

Selling your home isn’t for the weak at heart part 4

Nor is having a mother-in-law who at first calls your husband because she’s afraid to live alone after three recent visits to the hospital. I totally get that and yes, she’s not getting any younger. It’s not how I saw our lives in our new location. We’ll get two apartments so we can check on her and she still has her independence. Fine, but then she doesn’t want to live in a rental so she wants us to house shop. because she wants us to share a home. Okay after spending hours looking at suitable one story houses she decides that she’s not ready to move yet but we need to be ready. Fine and Dandy, but I don’t want to buy a house and wait for her to change her mind again. I didn’t want the upkeep or the stress of maintenance. And the more I think about it, I don’t want or need the stress involved with living with her. I could go into all the horror stories but I’ll leave it as is with simply she’s difficult. So we’re going with our original plan. Apartment for 2 and a fur baby. We need to do what’s best for us and our health.

The good news is we have a tentative offer on our house pending architectural approval for the sale. The house should pass easily enough so we can finally get to the next step in our lives. Now, I’m looking at apartments, and packing up an eight room house. Goodwill and the V.A. are loving me right now. 1000 books have left our home, three bags of clothing, bookcases, dishes and I’m not done yet.

I’m sorting the boxes as I pack what goes to the apartment and what goes to storage so once we’re there it won’t be chaos.

Anyway, keep your fingers crossed everything goes as anticipated and we get to move in 6 weeks.

Object of desire

At a glance, it could be easily missed sitting among Grandma’s things. It didn’t sparkle like her prisms or sun catchers did. Nor did it have any unique markings that might tempt a child’s fantasy but it did. Her wild imagination created a different story for the treasure every time she gazed upon it. Why did it have to be on the do not touch shelf? It didn’t look breakable. It didn’t look like it was worth millions but what did her young mind know about grown up things. She longed to tuck it into her backpack. What virtue hides inside. It was a mystery she needed to solve.

The admired paragon sat silently beside a angel cherub holding a feather. There was a miniature glass terrarium with a metal frame that cast colors of the rainbow across the wall every afternoon with the setting sun on the other side of the shelf. It shined pretty but it wasn’t what the little girl wanted to wrap her chubby fingers around. She wanted to know what secrets it held. And besides she could see what was inside unlike the object of her attraction without a latch to open it.

Would her Gram miss it? How much trouble would she be in if she took off the shelf? She studied it from every angle but decided that she couldn’t disappoint her Grandmother by breaking the rule.

“Logic will get you from A to Z; imagination will get you everywhere.”-Albert Einstein

Years later, the paragon of her childhood imagination no longer captivated her because it didn’t hold hidden treasures from a pirate ship. Nor did it have a unique gem from a secret lover. It was simply a box made of dark cherry wood with rounded corners. Why did she foolishly imagine it must be valuable. Not having a latch made a young mind curious, but she was older now and didn’t care.

Time passed and it was forgotten like many other unexplained childhood fascinations.

“You can’t depend on your eyes when your imagination is out of focus.” -Mark Twain


She picked up her beloved cat’s ashes from the veterinarian’s office. She opened the box and inside was a dark cherry wooden box. Her childhood fixation was an urn, just like the one she was holding in her hand. Now, she understood why it sat next to the cherub on the do not touch shelf.

She wished more than anything she wasn’t grasping this cherry box in her hand. She would rather be holding her beloved cat.