Category Archives: Holiday Ramble

Happy Earth Day!

This is the best time.  My name is April.  My birthday is in April.  Spring is my FAVORITE season.  My children were born in May and April.  It is my most energetic time of the year.  Easter has been my favorite holiday.  For us it has been about the meal and the HUNT.  The hunt for colored eggs, that WE MADE, and candy.  Now, Earth Day has crept upon our consciousness.

This year, I happen to have an Earth Day project.  To decrease the amount of cigarette butts tossed unto our landscape.  Those filters last FOREVER.

The way to do that is to help people to quit smoking.   In the most timely fashion, I began working on a Kickstarter campaign last month and I launched it this very Monday.  I am very excited!

Yes, I am unabashedly tagging along earth day’s coat tails, but the ridiculousness of those cigarette butts never decomposing struck me long before I quit smoking.  So I think it is a nice fit.

As I continue to build my sidebars with all the information and links, here is the short link, so you can have a look-see.

Please share even if you don’t back it.

New Years Eve!

In many ways this has been a crappy year and I am eager to put it to an end.  I suppose it is a matter of perspective because I have met most of my goals.

Last year, I was going to be tiny by Christmas.  Well I’m not tiny, but I think I have found the problem and fixed it.   I went to the chiropractor and got everything back into alignment.  I fixed my digestion so I don’t have heartburn anymore.

I increased my exercise.  I rode my bike like crazy this year.   I also started running which is like huge leaps and bounds from someone who has always HATED running.  I have fallen out of routine since winter set in but I end the year not any bigger than the last.  That is success!  Usually I find another 10 lbs over the winter.  Not this year!  Tomorrow I start a new goal; 3 three miles a day, everyday; don’t care if it is walking or running; 3 miles a day minimum.

I started a blog.  I see activity daily, even on days I don’t post.  Now, that is exciting.  That is success.   I registered for Blogging 101 in January.  This time I will finish.

I published 3 little books and I do see some activity in sales. For next year I want to finish the series, complete the quitting smoking book.   I think I want to have that one published by Black Friday.   That is a tall order.  We will see where I am at next Thanksgiving.    Exciting.


The core of my writing and this blog is basically manners.  I’ve tried to think of how to make this relevant especially in an era when being abrasive and sarcastic rule.  I’ve tried to do this while bogged down with something other than the Christmas spirit.

For example instead of sugar-plum fairies, christmas lights and merriment that Christmas is coming, my word of the month has been “douche bag.”   More specifically a phrase , “don’t make douche-bag choices.”

For two days at work, I’ve “stepped outside” to calm things down and to represent ourselves to unruly customers because they would rather make the douche bag choice over their choice to use their manners.  One person had to show off because he works in the industry and had to get all snappy about how he knows how it’s done.   He went on this endless rant to where the people with him were telling him to shut up.  (yay).  The other incident was some kids came in for free water and nothing else.  Since our free water is sippy cups, apparently this wasn’t enough “free” for them, so they started kicking and slamming counters, booths and glass doors on their way out.   I was a bit behind but I followed them out to their waiting car and stared at them while they pulled away.  The driver (same age) had no idea what was happening and kept pausing as she couldn’t figure out why she was receiving this pathetic “why?” gesture I was throwing her way.  (An innocent bystander as I was trying to read her intentions of stopping the car or going.)

Later we discussed why do people make the choice to act out this way?  Is this what they want to be known as?  Really?  I joked I should hashtag – don’t make douche bag choices.  I got a laugh out of it.  I don’t think it would be a bad thing.  It maybe off-putting to some of the circles I run in, but if I heard someone say, “don’t make douche bag choices” to someone who decided to be disruptive and rude, I think that would be a good thing.

I have often wondered about anti-bully campaigns because bullies don’t see themselves as bullies.  Some, not all, but some, believe they are making the cool choice.  They believe it is all in the name of fun.  If someone could point out that they were making the douchy choice without actually labeling them a douche bag.  ???  Would it make them aware of how they are representing themselves and they COULD choose to represent themselves in a better way?  Oddly …  I see this as empowerment.

Look, graffiti isn’t put up by evil gremlins during the night.  It’s done by our children hanging out and one says, “Hey, I got an idea!”

The graffiti doesn’t get put up because someone else said, “Hey, let’s not.  Let’s do this instead.”  And they just kept the crime rate from going up.  So instead of laughing and giggling at kicking the counter if the other girl with the water said don’t make douche bag choices, would they have left?  If the girl in the car said to the guy on a rant, don’t make douche bag choices instead of shut up, would he have recognized he was making a choice to be brat, instead of trying to prove he was in the right because HE knows the procedure?

What would happen if we view criminal acts such as stealing and vandalism as douche bag moves instead of ballsy moves?  What would happen if we told our politicians to quit making douche bag choices?

Who knows.  If everyone took one day …  Just one day … to #dontmakedouchebagchoices  maybe we’d catch that national wave of Christmas Spirit before this season passes us by.

Day 27 NaBloPoMo; I don’t shop on Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving is an American Holiday.  It is about the only holiday that includes everyone.  EVERYONE.   Thanksgiving calls for unity in taking one day to be thankful.

There is no exception.

There is no, “It’s not fair.”

Thanksgiving isn’t, “just for those people and not me.”

This holiday expands across all religions, all economic statuses, all races.  Yes, even the Native population, for we are told yearly that we need to give thanks to the Natives for saving our butts on that first year.  Why not show our thanks now?

These days, there aren’t very many opportunities for us to be united anymore.

The majority used to go to church on Sundays.

We sat down to supper; roughly the same hour.

With only 3 or 4 channels on TV, we watched more of the same TV shows.  We all watched the moon landing.  We all watched Roots together.  We all tuned in to find out who shot JR.

We were more united with 8 hour work days and evenings off.

We had weekends on Saturday and Sunday instead of having two days off any time of the week and then consider it lucky if they aren’t split up.

You can be homeless and still be thankful for your breath.

You can be in mourning and be thankful for sharing their lives.

Anyone can be thankful that we have another day or another hour.

You don’t need to be shamed into being thankful for what you have because others aren’t as fortunate.

Thanksgiving used to give us that one day a year where we were all UNITED in something positive. Now on that day people have to go to work, and find day care, while the rest of us rush into their place of employment to fight each other over getting in on the best deal.

When are we all truly united any more?  During times of strife?  Anger?  Mourning?  Even then we usually stand divided.  When was the last time we were all united?  9-11?

Thanksgiving was created as a national holiday so we could be awarded the day off to rest and spend time with the family in giving thanks.  This is why I do not shop on Thanksgiving.

Day 25 NaBloPoMo: Sleep Deprivation

I’m not sure if this is a smart thing.  I am going to post while sleep deprived.  It is a holiday week and as the snow falls, I’m actually caught up on everything two days before Thanksgiving.

Today, at work, while I was still feeling the stress of just trying to get things done and having nothing but hurdles thrown at you, I thought about the last 7 years.  I used to run sleep deprived like this all the time.  Highly strung out on stress, being stupid because of it.  Today was a good reminder of that.  I kept forgetting this and dropping that and I kept gravitating toward tedious monotonous tasks just so I wouldn’t have to think.

But I did start to think.  I’ve made huge strides in improving my life, my outlook and my attitude and I am so much better off for it, but I began to wonder am I really happier?  I know if I need a picture I start heading towards the ones from 7 years ago.  I think these are the ones that look like me.  Thinner.  More active.  All involved with the kids. I certainly look happier in those pictures.  So how come I don’t go after any happy current pictures.  Aren’t I happier than I was 7 years ago?

Truth is, I am more content that I was 7 years ago.  Being broke for so long has taken its toll, it is so restrictive. Back then I may have been able to get happier or have happier moments, but I would have equally low moments, full of stress, more sleep deprivation than this, more fear of …  fear and judginess and wondering when I would “arrive” so I could quit trying to prove myself.  I kept waiting for the day where I could quit striving and start living.  Actually that day never came.  I pretty much said screw it all and then was able to start living.  And all that came after getting caught up on some rest, cooking and eating regularly, and trying to eliminate everything I didn’t want to do.

So would I trade places with myself from 7 years ago?  No.  I wouldn’t.  But, I will still grab a 7 year old picture to represent myself.  Ha Ha.

Day 24 NaBloPoMo; I almost said forget it.

I’ve worked so hard on finalizing my third little commuter read on “Goodness” that I almost said, FORGET it.  I’m not POSTING today.  Until I remembered some tidbits my husband found this morning.  He always finds the most fascinating things.  He’s the one that should have a blog to archive this stuff and share.  Neatorama is one of his resources and today they posted some things about pilgrims in America.  Enjoy!   Happy NaMo Everyone!   And if you aren’t … Happy Writing!

Day 22 NaBloPoMo: Christmas Decorations Before Thanksgiving

I am one for timely holidays.  I think we should celebrate the holidays in the order they come, but lights out here in the middle of everywhere are very popular.  Even other religions are finding ways to light up yard either through landscaping lights, fall colors, or designer white or ice blue lights to signify winter or the New Year.  Why?

I took this picture at 5:34 this evening.  If we were on fake time, it would be 6:34.


Nov 22 5:34

Day 10 NaBloPoMo; Reading Monday

Today is Reading Monday, where I read and comment on what other people posted for the week.  Plus, I start formatting my next book, Goodness.  Additionally, I have to clean the oven before Thanksgiving.  I cooked a pizza last night and smoked billowed out as the collections of drippings from former use burn to crispy flakes.  The pizza looked appealing, it tasted good, barring that every time I took a bite I could smell smoke as if it were an ingredient added to the pizza.   Maybe if it was salmon, carp, or a roast.

Yay! We are starting a new week.  This Friday is the 15th, we will all be right in the middle of the NaMos!

Happy NaMo Everyone!

Day 4 NaBloPoMo; I Voted!

I voted and I voted Local.   It is all great to have a hand in voting for the president.  But hey, where you live is where it is at.  It is important to vote local.  Even if I have never heard of these people before, I still try to get to know them.  Especially these days when information is so easily obtainable.

Since my polling place is a few blocks away I literally ran to go vote.   Now I am in rush off to work.

Happy Election Day!

Happy NoMo!

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