Mildred and Chris

I swear, my blog won’t always be about death after this post.

Near the end of September I was feeling heavy and asked for you, my dear blog friends to say some prayers for my friends Mildred and Chris.

I’d met Chris through blogging in 2009; she wrote about her life, just as I did. We connected over our love of boxers and our enjoyment of absolute silliness. After a few years, she quit blogging, but we were Facebook friends. She was a sweet woman who had many health challenges over the years, but she always had this lovely outlook on life; she really lived each moment and rarely wallowed over her ailments. She loved to send me cute butterfly or bee photos or some funny jokes via messenger. I was sad to learn that her body was failing her via one of her sons, and then she passed away a week later. Chris was in her early 60’s.

I can only hope that there is a heaven where Chris will be surround by boxer puppies & rescue cats and that her body is healthy and strong.


My sweet friend Mildred had been diagnosed with pancreatic cancer several months ago. She went into this with a positive attitude, jumping through all the damn insurance hoops to start chemo. Sadly, the chemo was taking a toll on not only her, but her family who she is the sole caretaker of.

My heart broke for her. Still though, she kept her sunny outlook although she had wished for more time to do all the things she wanted to do.

She opted for home hospice to make it easier on her family, and then last Monday the pain was too much and she opted to go to a hospice facility. Her husband emailed me on Saturday morning letting me know she had passed away.

{the Busy Bee girls with Mildred 2010}

It was a mere 11 years ago that we finally met up in person ; we’d already been blog friends for several years. While the girls and I were visiting my Mom in GA the four of us took a 40 minute ride over to see Mildred and her husband. We had such a great visit; Mildred took us to an interesting art boutique for some shopping therapy, then we picked up lunch and ate together at their home. Ironically, that very art boutique has now added a wine/music venue and I’ve been there several times as it’s very close to our GA house. Thank you Mildred for that introduction.


Mildred and John moved away from the GA area several years ago, so that was our one and only in-person visit. We snail-mailed and emailed often and she was SO darn excited for Lolo’s wedding. I was happy to email her some ‘not ready to share with the pubic’ photos a few weeks ago. Even the day before she left for hospice, she was emailing me and saying how much she loved my family and was so happy and proud of our daughters. (Mildred did not have any children herself)

Mildred was the sweetest soul and one of the kindest people I’ve ever met. She always left the sweetest comments and sometimes she would think of something after the fact and email me whatever she thought of, sometimes it was something silly that she didn’t think the entire internet needed to know.

I can only hope that there is a heaven for Mildred where she will reconnect with her parents whom she adored, be surrounded by happy dachshunds and that she can eat endless desserts without gaining a pound.


Life truly is fleeting.

If I’m not back later this week, it’s been fun.

If I’m back later, I might have something silly to talk (or complain) about.

Did any of you realize that you could find lovely friends through blogging? I wasn’t expecting that to happen.

Thank you for being here with me; my friends who live in my computer actually live in my heart too.

XOXO

Your friend Suz

An Unappealing Issue With The General Public At Publix

If you came here for deep thoughts, you will won’t be disappointed today.

*Publix is the grocery store chain where we shop. Whenever I type the word Public, I usually type Publix instead, because it is a big part of my life*


Something that I’ve pondered for years, but haven’t shared here has to do with bananas.

I told you: DEEP.

Are you a ‘bring your own bag person when it comes to grocery shopping? If you are, you are cool and I like you deeply.

I always remember my shopping bags, but I also have some smaller reusable bags specifically for produce. I have to admit, sometimes those smaller bags get lost in my trunk and I forgo using them. Do I use plastic bags for my produce if I forget mine? Not on your life.

I plop my produce right in the COVID cart as I’ll be washing it all when I get home anyway.

No biggie, but something that I occasionally see in the produce department baffles me:

Bananas IN plastic bags.

Are you picking up what I’m putting down?

A shopper picks up a bunch of ‘nana’s and places them INSIDE a plastic bag then puts them in their cart.

Blows.my.mind.

Mother Nature made specific coverage for said ‘nana’s. They are already protected, so why are you giving them extra protection? It’s like a condom on a condom. This is wasteful with no chance of banana babies.

Photo by Any Lane on Pexels.com

I’d like a Gold Star for not actually saying this directly to the banana offenders in the store, you know I want to, but, I ain’t No hollaback girl.

YOU ARE IN MY HEAD.

A while back Nance wrote an entire blog post devoted to produce with an emphasis on bananas and their cost. I can’t walk past a banana display without thinking of her. That’s one way to get inside my head: blog about fruit.

For many years the Coach didn’t share my enjoyment of fruit. I think he was trying to avoid sugar and instead was eating bacon while his cholesterol was perfectly normal, and mine was skyrocketing. No, I’m not bitter, thanks for asking.

He’s had a change of heart lately and has skipped the daily bacon, and has been enjoying bananas, grapes, and apples with me. (He’s also lost weight)

I’ve been buying more bananas lately. I have to admit, I don’t usually look at the prices. I want them, so I buy them.

I had a planned trek to Costco this week:

Coach: get some bananas while you’re there.

Me: You have to buy TOO many in a bunch. We won’t be able to eat them.

Coach: I’ll eat them. I can eat two a day.

Me: Bragger. Ok.

I bought one huge bunch. (Here it is minus 2) They weren’t the prettiest, but I noticed the price was $4.99. {there you go Nance!}

I figured if we didn’t eat them we could always feed them to our staghorn ferns, as we already throw the peels in there, but they don’t mind the whole ‘nana.

When I got home, I was astonished at how I spent over $400 at Costco. I shouldn’t have been as I tend to leave a lot of money there. I went back through my receipt to get an overview of what the heck I’d purchased and I noted that the cashier charged me the wrong price for my large bunch of bananas.

$1.29 for 9 bananas. I feel like I got an amazing deal, but also felt bad that I inadvertently stole bananas.

But if you think I’m gonna fight the traffic and the onslaught of snow birds who now live at Costco for the free samples so I can pay the difference, well you might be a Monkey’s uncle.

**Edited to add** A few commenters pointed out that $1.29 probably was the correct price. I think the $4.99 price was for the organic bananas, which I did not purchase.

If you think I spent minutes putting this fruity post together, then you’d be correct. Minutes.


I’m waiting for more wedding photos before I can put that post together. Do you want photos and details? Or just photos?

Do any of your blog friends get in your head and travel with you?

One day I’m going to write a post solely about all of you bloggers and commenters who I think of as I go about my glamorous life of stealing fruit from Costco. That is if I ever get over the bananas-in-bags situation at Publix.

Signed,

Your friend who DOES have some restraint in public, but she’s still bananas.

The End Of The Questions {Part four}

I’m at the end of your interrogation questions. This really was fun and I would advise for you to also pose an open question and answer if you feel so obliged. NOT one person asked an inappropriate question which does make me wonder: are we even friends?

My friend Dawn sent this to me the other day and said I really needed to have it; it had my name all over it.

Not sure if any of you remember but in one of my posts several years ago I quoted my youngest child when she said to me: “Are you ever appropriate?

To know me is to love me.


Anyhoo, I have two unanswered questions:

Mark (Swinged Cat) asked: What is the best concert you ever attended? Why? And is there one artist or band, living or dead, you wish you could (or could have) seen?

This is such an awesome question; Mark and I are both big fans of live music. Well, if I had to pick ONE concert that was the best, it would have to be that one I saw on a blind date with a certain someone in August of 1985. That was a LIFE Changing concert to say the least. But I honestly didn’t remember the music as much as my date. We’ve seen some amazing artists in various places all of the country, but one that stands out as Super is when the Coach surprised me (and several friends) by booking a trip to NYC for my 40th birthday and while there we had VIP tickets to Farm Aid. Ya’ll know I’m obsessed with Dave Matthews, right? We’ve seen him at least 20 times, but this time there was also John Mellencamp, Willie Nelson, The Counting Crows, Neil Young, Mere Haggard, The Allman Brothers, Montgomery Gentry and many more. It was an all day affair with some of my dearest friends. *sigh* to be Forty again.

One person I would have LOVED to have seen in concert is Prince. I was always a big fan; he was an amazing artist.


Ernie screamed asked: DO AUNT AND UNCLE HAVE CHILDREN? IF NOT, DO YOU HAVE OTHER COUSINS? IF YOU DO, DO YOU SEE THEM MUCH?

I can HEAR YOU! Kidding. I really can’t, this damn tinnitus….

AT and UJ have two sons; Patrick and Christopher. {Aunt Trisha is one of my Mom’s younger sisters} I believe Patrick reads my blog, or at least he tells me he reads my blog.

I have seven cousins in total between both sides, some of them live within a few hours of us, but I rarely see them which makes me sad. My paternal Grandma told me that when she was gone I would have to be the Matriarch and keep everyone in touch, but damn, it’s been hard with these guys; I finally threw in the towel after so many failed attempts.

But, I do see Patrick as he lives in GA; we always get together for Thanksgiving and sometimes we would see each other during the summer in either FL or GA. But, now that we have a place in GA we will see him more. He just came up and spent a week with Coach in I back in May in GA.

UJ, AT and Patrick at our house a few Thanksgiving’s ago. Patrick is a fan of any holiday that is ‘food centered’, so I know we don’t need a DNA test to prove we’re blood related.

Since Patrick is the only one I see and he *reads* my blog, he is my absolute favorite cousin.


So that’s all I know about that.

*Suz takes a bow and thanks the audience for their applause*

What artist you like to see alive or dead? I mean, I don’t want to see a DEAD artist, you know what I mean.

XOXO

Ask Me Anything Answers {part 3}

Kari asked a very easy and LIGHT question: What books have you read that changed your life? If you don’t have any, what movies or tv shows? I love a life-altering something or other. 

LIFE ALTERING? I honestly don’t know of anything that I’ve read or watched that altered my life. Perhaps back in the day I watched a documentary about recycling and it struck a chord with me as I’ve been a stringent recycler since the early 90’s. Of course, now you can watch a documentary of HOW recycling isn’t doing anything and that will just crush my soul, so I’m not going there. One of my favorite books is The Red Tent. I read it perhaps three times. Not sure if it altered my life, but it certainly made me ponder the days long before my ancestors. Also when I read Jeanette Walls The Glass Castle, it made me realize my messed up family life as a child was pretty idyllic in comparison.


Christine asked: Who do you look up to the most, and what qualities do you love about that person?!

Goodness gracious, way to make me dig deep. This will sound very cheesy, but if I had to choose one person I admire the most, it would be my husband. Did someone just gag? I also don’t want people to think I’m some sort of kept woman who idolizes her husband because He Is Man, I Am Little No Brain Woman. You didn’t think that, did you? He is the epitome of self made, he’s just so incredibly smart and intuitive. But the qualities that I wish I had as he does is his selflessness, his giving spirit and the fact that he doesn’t let anyone get to him. He takes nothing personally and isn’t worried about what anyone thinks of him, well, aside from me. He’s always put family first in everything and I’m so thankful for that.


Maddie-My question (if you don’t mind sharing) – do you have a favorite “name story”? Like how did you pick your kids’ names? Or if that’s too personal (I totally understand), is there a story behind one of your dogs’ names?

The girls were born back when you only got a sonogram if they thought there was something wrong. But, I knew in my heart each time that they were going to be girls. I did have some boys names as a backup just in case my intuition was trying to deceive me. When Lolo was born, I was in love with the name Lindsay. I’d only known of a handful of Lindsays and I thought the name was SO pretty. But, the only other family we knew where we were living in TX at the time, had a daughter named Lindsay. And the Mom of that Lindsay was going to watch our new baby when I went back to work. So, the Coach nixed the name. My next favorite name was Lauren; I’d ONLY known ONE Lauren and that was when I was in 7th grade. I also toyed with the name Laurel, because, trees. When she arrived we decided on Lauren. Fast forward to the playground a few years later and there were eleventy hundred Laurens. *sigh* When Linds was born, we were now living in Arizona and had no babysitter planned with a child named Lindsay. btw: we laugh at people who spell Lindsay any other way than the correct way. 😉

The Coach and baby Lolo. Those cheeks!

Ally Bean: My question is: why do you live where you live? Deets please. Hmmmm…how to answer this without being too wordy?

We’re both Florida natives. When were got married the Coach had a great job as a Tech Representative for a particular type of airplane engine and I was a hair stylist. His job had him traveling all.over.the place at a moments notice. He loved it and the company loved him. Not too long after he started, they moved us to the Dallas area in 1992; we left our hometown and everyone we knew. We loved the Dallas area, we built a house, had a baby and life was good. A few years later the Company wanted Coach to run his own turbine engine repair shop which was awesome because: Less world traveling at a moments notice. He had a few choices of where to set up the shop west of Dallas; we settled on Scottsdale, AZ. Again, we sold the house and moved to the Phoenix area in 1995; I was 8 months pregnant with Linds. LIFE was good. We LOVED it there too. We didn’t know a soul, but we had a nice life. A year and a half into our AZ life Coach’s dad came for a visit and was saying how he wanted to retire and sell his cabinet business as It was a lot of work for him. Suz pipes up: “Hey, we can move back to Florida, buy your business and you can retire.” As much as we loved AZ, we had NO family ties and we had two young girls who only saw grandparents a few times a year. So, in 1997 Coach said goodbye to his awesome job, we sold the house and made our way to SW Florida. (we grew up on the East coast) He knew nothing about making or selling cabinets, but he’s an entrepreneur at heart. The company has grown exponentially over the past 24 years and has afforded us a great life and that of our 70 employees. And here we are, living a dream life in hot as heck Florida.

A pic of the day we pulled out of Coach’s Moms house headed to TX in 1992. We had my Saturn on a trailer behind his truck and two drugged cats in the front seat with us.


I have two more questions to answer. *whew, wipes brow from exhaustion*

KIDDING.

XOXO