Monthly Archives: April 2014




Today’s letter is…Z

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Have you heard of Zentangles? It is a very creative form of art that anyone can do. All you need is something to write with and some paper.

Basically, all you do is make designs of any kind. There is no right or wrong way to do it. Your design can be as simple or elaborate as you want it to be, and it will look great. For some, I think this is a new fad. I’ve just recently heard it had a name. I’ve done them for years, for fun, before there was a name for the drawings. I just figured it was a form of doodling on paper, which is also fun and relaxing.

The name Zentangle is taken from the word Zen…meaning peaceful and relaxing. Tangle would represent the line drawings that weave around the page in repetitive patterns.

There are really no rules to this. However, there are websites that do give step by step instructions, and show lots of patterns you can try to replicate. There are other sites where you can share your creations with others. Some artwork is done in color, but most are done in black and white, with pen or pencil.

For me, I just like to let the pen flow across the paper in whatever shapes come to mind. Thus, the Zen-like quality of the excercise. You are creating a design that is totally unique to you. You will be pleasantly surprised by how cool it looks.

So, grab a piece of paper and your pen/pencil. Try to free your mind of stress, and just let the Zentangles flow across the page.

If you’d like to see more examples, and read about Zentangles, you can find the information here…

Thank you for reading! If you’d like to, check out my other blog for the letter Z at… http://ghostmmnc.blogspot.comImage




Today’s letter is…Y

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Do you like going to yard sales? I have so much fun on the weekends doing just that. You can find almost anything at one of these sales. If you are looking for something specific, chances are, someone will have it.  Of course, while you are there, many more items will catch your eye. There is always a surprise waiting to be found.

On just about any Friday and Saturday, there will be ads in the newspapers, on bulletin boards, telephone poles, and Craig’s List.  Get out your pen and paper, because you’ll need to write down the addresses or circle the ad of the ones you want to go to. It’s best to do this early. Try to group locations that are close together, as you write them down. This saves time, as you won’t have to backtrack into neighborhoods.

There is no need to get dressed up for this activity. Wear something comfortable. Bring a snack and something to drink with you, too. Don’t forget to bring cash…small bills and change are best. Now you are ready to go find some treasures.

If you are wanting to host a yard sale yourself, that can be fun, and you can earn some money. It is a lot of work, but worth it at the end of the day. If possible, start gathering up items you want to sell, a few months before the date. This gives you time to spruce up those items that may need washing, check for any problems with electrical appliances, to make sure they work, and to put price tags on things. Honestly, if there is no label stating the price you are asking, you will lose sales. Lots of people won’t bother to ask you, they will just pass it up. That is a sale lost.

Try to group like items together, and please make use of tables for displaying. Have a money box with some cash already inside, for making change. Advertise your sale, and on the day of the sale, put up posters and signs with the address printed large on them, close to your neighborhood. (don’t forget to take them down when the sale is over).

A few tips….please do not advertise that your sale is huge, multi-family, or a block sale, unless it really is. A small table of items and a few clothes hung from a tree, is not huge. People will drive right by this kind of sale. Another tip would be to take things out of boxes. Not everyone wants to dig through them. Also, a table piled high with clothes, is a turn-off. People want to come and go quickly…no one has time to sort through a jumbled up mess.

Try to make your sale look inviting to those who drive by. A few balloons taped to a mailbox, some colorful streamers, music playing, all serve to attract attention to the prospective customer. At the end of the day, you will be tired, but it will have been worth your hard work, when you count all the money you’ve made.

Have fun going to yard sales. The treasures are out there…go find them!

Thanks for reading! If you’d like to, visit my other blog for the letter Y. It is here… http://ghostmmnc.blogspot.comImage




Today’s letter is…X

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The letter X is such a versatile letter. You see it in all areas of writing. I think it doesn’t get the recognition it deserves. If you look in the dictionary, the words listed for the letter x seems to be one of the shortest entries. Most of the words are hard to pronounce, and the meanings are a bit technical. In the real world, using the letter x is very common. It takes the place of putting ‘ex’ in a word. It serves to shorten it, and make it stand out. Some examples in advertising would be…X-treme, X-tra, X-terior, and X-ams. The x is usually a big, capital one, to draw attention.

One of the earliest uses of the letter x, was found in the Middle Ages. People would sign an X for their signature. The X is a form used for the cross, in Christian religion. Sometimes, people would sign a document with the letter X, then kiss it, showing they were sincere, their faith, and honesty.

Some other examples of the use of the letter X, are in games, such as tic-tac-toe, in math, as an unknown number, in treasure maps, as in X marks the spot you can find the prize, and in cartoons, as depicting a dead person.

Xeriscaping, is a word that is used in lawn care. If you xeriscape, you are using drought tolerant plants and grasses in your yard. We have a lot of that here where we live, where we are in a severe drought most of the time.

Xenophobia, is the unreasonable fear of strangers, foreigners, or customs. I wonder if people have that about me, as my name means strange and foreign, from a foreign land! I hope not!

Other times you see the letter x used, is in sizes, such as X, XX, XXX, meaning extra large, 2X, or 3X. Three XXX can also indicate something is poison when it is on a bottle of something. Movies use X-rated, to let people know it includes adult content. Sports such as football use the letter x to map out strategies on the playing field.

As you can see, the letter X is used in many ways. It is not only the scary letter that begins those words in the dictionary. Well, unless you think about how sometimes the letter X at the start of a word is sometimes pronounced like the letter Z! I’m not sure who deciced on that!

Thanks for reading! If you’d like to, visit my other blog for the letter X. It is here… Image




Today’s letter is…W

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The word Ouachita is the French spelling of the Indian word Washita. The Ouachita National Forest was designated as such, in 1926. It is the oldest National Forest in the southern United States. It encompasses thirteen counties in western central Arkansas, and two counties in southeastern Oklahoma.

The Talimena Scenic Byway was officially named in 2005, It runs through the Ouachita National Forest, leading to the Winding Stair Mountains. The road has no shoulders, and is very curvy and twisty, some even 180 degrees, hairpin turns.

Those are the facts. That is no comparison to actually driving down that road, in person. It is hard to find enough adjectives to describe the things your eyes feast upon. Majestic, awesome, beautiful, and exciting, are some words you will think of. You catch your breath on the steep grades, and those twisting roads…and there are miles of them.

You are surrounded by the tall trees…just you and the beauty of nature, brings about a hushed feeling, as you take in all the wonders the forest shows you. If you are adventurous, there are hiking trails, mountain biking trails, fishing, camping, and canoeing.

Established in 1978, the Upper Ouachita Wildlife Refuge, is home to many kinds of wildlife. There are black bears, aligators, deer, and many species of birds. The endangered red-cockaded woodpecker is one resident, along with the bald eagle, and many other birds. 

If you like hunting for rocks, the Quartz Crystal…state mineral of Arkansas, are free to pick up off the ground where you find them.

Bring your binoculars and camera when you go visit the Ouachita National Forest. You will not be disappointed. 

Thank you for reading. If you’d like to, visit my other blog for the letter W. Image





Today’s letter is…V

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Benign Paroxysmal Positional Vertigo (BPPV) is a disorder of the inner ear. It causes you to have a spinning sensation when you move your head in certain ways.

It happens to me when I look down or up too far. It lasts a few minutes, but a few times it has lasted a couple of weeks, gradually getting better. It feels like you are off balance, dizzy, and you or the room is spinning around.

My sense of balance is iffy, at best. I sometimes think I am walking one direction, but instead I am leaning and walking off in another. It’s no joke…I run into walls. I look and feel drunk when it happens. It can come on suddenly, every time I move my head the wrong way.

The inner ear has fluid, and calcium crystals. They can become dislodged. These ‘ear rocks’ as they are sometimes called, cause the fluid displacement, causing vertigo.

There are a few repositioning techniques that can be done in a clinic, and there are anti-dizziness medications that can be tried. I hvae done all of these, and it helped a little, but it never completely goes away.

I’ve had this for years, so I should be used to it. I suppose I am, but I still don’t like it. One of the worst times is when I’m looking down for a little while, sweeping the floor. Afterwards, I have to sit for a few minutes, to let the spinning stop. Then it is just fine again, until the next time I move my head wrong.

So, if you ever thought being drunk or tipsy from alcohol was kind of fun, try living that way for years. I wouldn’t wish this feeling on anyone.

Thanks for reading! If you’d like to, visit my other blog for the letter V. It is at http://ghostmmnc.blogspot.comImage

That was a Mess!


Well, I just made a mess out of the post today. I typed it up, but forgot to put in some things. Then I pushed publish, only to find out the link I added, didn’t work. So I tried to do the edit thing…which I can’t really make work, and I got all kinds of error notices. Hmmm. So I think I trashed the whole thing (not sure). Now I’m going to start over. Whew…so many things to remember on here! 🙂 So, hang in there, I’ll try again!