Warning! If you are of the male species, this may not be the post for you. To all others, THIS is what happens when I have nothing else to write about (unless you want to know about a dental appointment, allergies, or the amount of cat hair sucked up by the vacuum cleaner).

Proceed with caution…

I hate shopping for a bra. Hate, hate, hate it…with a passion. It is akin to having a tooth pulled at the dentist. Or fingernails on the chalkboard. Or listening to a dry, boring speaker right after eating a turkey club sandwich, fries and a brownie. Or trying on a bathing suit in spring when the skin is white and the extra 10 holiday pounds have not gone away.

Bra shopping is NOT fun.

bra store 2

Wipe that smile off your pretty, blonde face, it’s not funny or fun.

I dread the trip to the department store. While some women have a hard time with fitting due to their SIZE, I have a hard time fitting due to my size. One would think that not being endowed would make it easy, but it does not. Girlfriend Kelly agrees. She has “the nones” which is the flattened interpretation of “the girls.” I’m there with you, Kel. Let’s just say that coming up with a bra size that has two letters instead of one has been a great help, although that doesn’t always work across brands. And, when I think I’ve found the right brand and size, a busty babe at Victoria’s Secret announces that I do not need two letters, I just need a new letter.

Really? I’m so confused.

  • Did you know that women spend $16 billion worldwide, annually, on bras? (Spent begrudgingly, except for the ^pretty blonde woman^.)
  • Or that we each have nine boulder holders (tm Natasha) or pebble slings in our dresser drawer? (I come in at a mere 5.)
  • Or that the average cup size is 36C? (I feel so inept.)
  • Or that women change sizes at least six times in their life? (That would explain my need for a new letter.)

love no bra day

In October 1932, the S.H. Camp and Company correlated the size and pendulousness of a woman’s breasts to letters of the alphabet, A through D. Pendulousness? I can’t relate. How about a description for me and my kindred spirits? Noncleavageness comes to mind.

It’s not just the size and fit that is at issue here. It’s also the price. I will pay a mere $20 for a long-sleeved T-shirt that covers my entire upper torso, but must fork over $30 for a bra that covers a teeny tiny piece of me. (That’s the cost of the cheap bra at Kohl’s after using the 30% off coupon, buying three bras, and getting a $10 coupon to purchase a $20 pair of underwear.)  Seriously, I don’t have that kind of money for bras and I will not stand on the street corner, dressed like a cheeseburger, in order to make extra money to buy one.

Senseless inhumanity…

Thankfully, bra shopping is not in my near future. I was reminded of the ordeal, recently, as it was Natasha’s turn to sift through racks and racks of multi-colored cotton, polyester and spandex lace. She had a coupon and meant business. One hour later, Natasha declared victory. Lucky. Not everyone can find three bras that fit in one hour.

“I can never find the right bras.” ~Kate Upton~

See? Even the supermodels hate shopping for a brassiere. If Kate Upton can’t find a bra to fit, what hope do I have to find the correct size or letter?

What of your feelings, my friend, of bra shopping? Love it? Hate it? Are you forever in search of the perfect letter?

 

For this week’s challenge, share what humanity means to you.

Farmers 002

Every Saturday morning, from mid June to late October, College Avenue is filled with humanity.

Humanity in search of home grown peppers, tomatoes, corn, heirloom tomatoes, fresh farm eggs, bouquets of flowers, trinkets and an assortment of food items.

Four blocks, 150 vendors, a few shopping humans.

We filled our bags.

Perseverance, persistence, determination, resolution, resolve, grit.

Or luck.

Flower 003

I bought mom a potted Gerbera daisy plant in 2013. I don’t remember when – it may have been Mother’s Day or her birthday or “just because.” When it stopped flowering, mom asked me to take it away. I didn’t have the heart to throw the daisy in the trash, but couldn’t keep it in the apartment due to the felines. I took the little plant to work, and kept watering the pathetic creature. It’s been pathetic most of the time – half of the Gerbera leaves died over time and if I would forget to water the daisy in a timely manner, it wilted as though on death’s door. I was THIS close (my thumb and forefinger are a half centimeter apart) to putting the poor daisy out of its misery more than once. THIS close.

I’m so happy that I pardoned Gerbera and kept on giving her liquid life. The persistence paid off.

Flower 005

Or it was just plain luck.

Biking and kitkat 001

No, not me. I am the Oreo junkie, remember?

It’s mom. She’s the Kit Kat junkie.

And it’s my fault.

In the past few years, mom’s taste buds have packed their suitcase and gone on vacation. The buds return at times, long enough to savor an adult refreshment or a ham sandwich. For the most part, though, they either betray or stay away. The vacant taste buds make it especially difficult to find a snack or treat that mom can enjoy in her room, in between meals.

Mom has dabbled with gummy bears and licorice, but they both stick to her dentures. Potato chips and Cheetos are pronounced “too salty,” even though that is one thing mom can taste. Boxes of Russell Stover waxy chocolate from visitors have been pushed aside (I don’t blame her on this one). Star mints and root beer barrels have come and gone. The choices for snacks and treats have become slim to none.

Two weeks ago, as I was shopping in the local mega grocery story, I had an epihany: Hey! Mom used to love Kit Kat bars!  Mom would keep a paper lunch bag up in the kitchen cupboard, filled with Kit Kats. The ex-husband used to tease her about “the stash.” That was her favorite candy bar. She made no excuses for the contents inside the paper bag.

So, guess what I bought for her at the mega grocery store? (I shouldn’t have to answer that question.)

Not even a week later, after I had left a bag of Kit Kat minis in her room, mom had one of the aides call to leave a message. Bring more Kit Kats. Mom was out of Kit Kats. Then mom proceeded to call me three times in one day to tell me she needed a fix more Kit Kats. Mom still loves the chocolate-covered cookie. So, being a good dealer daughter that I am, I bought mom another bag of Kit Kats.

Then I proceeded to unwrap each individually wrapped Kit Kat and put them in a Ziploc bag…to make it easy for mom to feed her addiction have a Kit Kat instead of wrestling with the wrapper.

That was Saturday. Mom inhaled four piece of this chocolate goodness during the unwrapping process. She told me several times how much she liked the Kit Kats.

I don’t know what happened after I left. Mom may have eaten half of the bag, for all I know. I have turned her into a Kit Kat-addicted junkie.

I fear the dealer may get another call or three on Tuesday.

And it’s my fault.

Gibbs & Misc 022

No, dear human, I am not lazy.

I am simply saving my energy for later.

Maybe around 4 am Sunday

*human frowns, Mr. Gibbs laughs*

“Whether your own or someone else’s, literal or figurative, take us on a photographic adventure.”

~The Daily Post~

Trail and Hooah 004

Sunset, biker babe, friend, adventure.

Mountain Bay Trail 013

Daylight, biker babe, friend, adventure.

(Peace, love and crabs to all.)

 

If haiku is the sashimi of poetry, tanka is its heartier hand roll cousin.

Trail and Hooah 007

Summer, why leave us?

You take the long days with you

The warmth seeps away

We shall miss your smiling skies

Please stay, for just one more month


It’s football season

Summer is waving good-bye

The pigskin is tossed

A wave breaks across the fans

Green and gold color the field


Summer is now gone

Frost covers the browning grass

Pumpkin patches rule

The holidays stand nearby

Waiting for fall to take course


Fall makes a brave stand

Red and gold leaves loosen grasp

Gently falling down

The season turns, turns again

Falling white and cold appear


Summer, we miss you

Miss the swimsuits and flip-flops

Stead, long underwear

Snow shovels, short days, gray skies

Winter tightens grip forever

It’s Labor Day here in the USA. It’s my special day and also the special day of everyone who has ever earned a paycheck.

I am about to embark on a picnic with the lovely neighbors in the apartment building. Food, laughs, more food and more laughs will end the three-day holiday. It’s the unofficial goodbye to summer, when the kiddies go back to school and the change in weather brings crisp fall days and the ripening of pumpkins.

The weather this weekend has not been fabulous. It threatened rain all day Saturday and it has been raining today, although we currently have a break in the clouds. Sunday was the good day, with clouds giving way to sun by noon. Natasha and I headed to yet another bike trail, this time the Wild Goose State Trail. Mostly tree-lined and covered, we crossed several bridges, came upon a few tractor crossings and wooden benches, passed a few areas of civilization and took several breaks before the 22-mile trip was over.

Photos tell the rest of the story…

Wild Goose Trail 007 Wild Goose Trail 009 Wild Goose Trail 012 Wild Goose Trail 014 Wild Goose Trail 015 Wild Goose Trail 016

 Yes, a tractor actually crossed our path…

It’s your turn now: for this week’s challenge, bring together two of your photos into dialogue. What do they say to each other?

Trail and Vet 006Trail and Vet 002

A conversation ensues between bike and board…

“I’m here, can you feel me?”

Why, yes, I can.

 

The board engages the trail…

“Will you hold us together for this bike?”

Why, yes, I will.

 

The trail talks to the tree…

“Are you able to show the way?”

No doubt, able I am.

 Flattery is like chewing gum. Enjoy it but don’t swallow it.

~Hank Ketcham~

I do believe Gibbs has swallowed his gum several times. He’s the attention-seeking one…the social butterfly…the one who always hears, “He’s such a beautiful cat.” He knows flattery. And, at times, it’s gone to his little gray cranium.

Not today, though.

It was the Annual Trip to the Vet Day(or Two Howling Cats Day)

Trail and Vet 016

There was no flattery in this. Only humility and a veterinarian who said he needs to play more and eat less.

Ziva thought it funny until he said the same about her.

She was not amused on the way home.

Trail and Vet 017

 

Ziva doesn’t care about flattery or gum.

A basket, food, a face rub and sleep count as necessities for a queen.

Gibbs, on the other hand…his chewing gum will be on the bed post until the next person says, “He’s such a beautiful cat!”

He lays quiet, waiting…

In my dreams, I envision a place.

countryside

This is the place of my dreams, but it is not

I do not want to be here, in the countryside

Green pastures are of no use to me

My dreams

they are of family

Wanting to be with family

Walking barefoot through the garden

Watching the men spread asphalt in the alley

The smell of wine coming from the basement

The smell of a German mother’s cooking

emanating from the kitchen

My brothers and sisters are there

Are you my sister Jean?

I miss you

I miss my family

That is where my dreams long to be

How did I get in this green pasture?

I don’t understand

Take me home

to the city

to the family dwelling

a set of steep stairs lead to the second floor

next to the railroad tracks

My brother and sisters are there

Why am I in this green pasture?

I want to go home

This nice young lady will take me home

What is your name?

Who are you?

Are you my sister Jean?

I miss you

I miss my family

Green pastures, they are of no use to me

Much like my eyes and ears

They do not bring me life

They do not bring solace

I search for my family, in my dreams

and when I wake

I find them

They are here

Green pastures are gone

If you are an artist, an art lover, enamored with cows, don’t care about art or cry over Van Gogh, you may want to check out artist Louise Fletcher’s most recent blog post, “What is Art?”

Elsie

After living in the U.S. for many years, Louise is now living in the Yorkshire Dales. It has inspired this talented artist to draw the surrounding landscape and the most wonderful, emotive cows.

Take a few minutes to visit her blog or Facebook page. You won’t regret it.