Snapshot Saturday: 11/26/16 Final Blooms

Nashville has had two evenings of below freezing temperatures. That means between now and December 15, rosarians will be winterizing our roses. This is not my favorite task. Last year I felt compelled to winterize all of my babies in one session. It was exhausting. This year I’m breaking things up and will work on a few at a time over the next few weekends. Before getting started on today’s winterizing session I walked to the rose bed, camera in hand. I’m thrilled to see a few final blooms.

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How Long Will the Blooms Last?

The temperatures are finally cooling off in Nashville. A first frost can’t be far away. I still have some rose blooms. Most of them look sad due to the drought and my inability to be at home during daylight hours in order to water the rose bed. I have some buds; I wonder if they will be able to open before the temperatures take a deep dive. For now, I’ll enjoy what I have.


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Gray Pride

It finally happened. Friday night hubs and I went out for a quick bite. We were offered the Senior Discount…

…without asking for it.

I’m not gonna lie; it stung a bit. Not because I don’t like saving money; it stung because for the first time someone openly  acknowledged that what is seen on the outside doesn’t match how I feel on the inside. Inside I feel like a 25-year-old (well, on most days). On the outside I look like who I am, a woman in her 50s. I’ve never asked for a senior discount because frankly, I forget that many businesses entitle me to have one. I just don’t feel “that old.”

Now, let me be the first to say, there’s nothing wrong with being a woman in her 50s. I wouldn’t go back to being in my 30s or 40s for  ANYTHING. Many of us in our 50s have become comfortable in our own skin. We have a new-found confidence that can only come from circling the block a few times. I can now have difficult business and personal conversations that at one time would have terrified me. I no longer define myself by what others think of me. I’ve grown from hard knocks. I’ve peeled away some onion layers. I’ve shed some skin. Name the age-related euphymism and I’ve done it. I bet you have to.

Sure, I can do some things to look younger. I can get in better shape; I’m working on that. I could color my gray streaks, but I’d rather become a silver fox. I could get a facelift, but I’m too cheap and I’m not crazy about the look some people have following one too many procedures.

Instead, following a weekend of thinking about it, I’ve allowed that well-meaning young lady who rang up our Zalad orders to remind me to embrace the aging process. I’ll always want to put my best face forward even as that means crows feet, laugh lines (I want to earn lots of those), a sagging neck and a mane full of silver.

Now that the little shock has worn off, I think it’s time to own my Gray Pride. Who’s with me?

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Snapshot Saturday: 10-29-16

It’s been a week full of good stuff (I taught a two-day intensive Fund Raising Boot Camp for Nashville’s Center for Nonprofit Management) and one big stressor. While driving to a friend’s house Thursday night, I hit a deer. Yesterday I had a tension headache All. Day. Long. I had intended to work on a couple of upcoming workshops but instead I was on the phone with the insurance company, and later I took my still driveable but quite damaged car for an appraisal. The car’s in the shop, I’m in a rental and I am grateful I wasn’t hurt. As for the deer, she fled the scene of the accident so I can only hope she’s ok.

This morning I decided I’d had a busy week and a rest is in order. I did some light work on one of the workshops and then I did what I encourage my coaching clients to do: something for self. As you can guess, for me that means going outside and visiting my babies. Enjoy.

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Snapshot Saturday: 10/22/16

Hubs and I were out of town last weekend and with the days getting shorter, by the time I get home from the office each evening there hasn’t been enough daylight left for me to spend quality time in the rose bed. Today I’m traveling to Lexington, KY, to attend a funeral. Before hopping in the shower I wanted to step outside and take a look at my babies. It wasn’t light enough to photograph without a flash. So here are my first rose pictures, hastily shot, using flash photography.

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What is CIMO?

Many articles have been written about FOMO: the Fear Of Missing Out. I recently read a piece on JOMO: the Joy of Missing Out. That one was written for Introverts like me. While I don’t suffer from FOMO, I don’t think I feel joy when missing a social activity.

I think I have CIMO: Content In Missing Out. Allow me to explain.

Hubs and I had a trip planned for the first weekend of this month. A work commitment popped up and I needed to stay in town. We searched for another weekend in October (it was an anniversary/Halloween mash up, so it needed to happen in October.) Due to a family birthday celebration later in the month our only option was last weekend. As it happened, I had friends coming in town for an annual reunion. I agonized for a bit, then decided to compromise. I would spend Thursday evening with my friends, and the rest of the weekend would be all about Halloween fun with hubs.

Thursday evening with my reunion crew was filled with laughter. Then hubs and I spent the weekend at Cedar Point amusement park in Sandusky, Ohio. The trip was fantastic in every way, from unseasonably mild weather, to a free rental car upgrade, to my having TSA Precheck boarding passes. My Achilles tendonitis was calm enough that I could walk around without too much discomfort.

Once back home I learned that a friend I haven’t seen in about 15 years surprised the crew by arriving on Friday. I was happy everyone got to see him and I enjoyed hearing how he pulled off the surprise. (It involved dressing in costume and wandering around Pancake Pantry, the annual Friday brunch location.) But at no time did I feel remorse that I wasn’t in town. In other words, there was no FOMO. I also didn’t feel joy that I missed the visit, so there was no JOMO.

What I felt was perfect contentment. I was glad my friends had such a great time and I was equally glad hubs and I had a wonderful weekend. In other words, I felt CIMO. And for me, CIMO is just perfect.

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Snapshot Saturday: It’s Fall, Y’all!

Everyone who knows me knows I love summer blooms. The roses! The zinnias! The cosmos! The Blackeyed Susans! You get the picture. But fall ushers in a different type of gardening and landscaping and I’ve been reveling in it for the past two weekends.

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What are you doing to celebrate the season?

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Adulting Through Injury

Well, folks, I have Achilles tendonitis.

I’ve been training for an October 29 half marathon. Last week I noticed some pain while running (and walking). Thursday night during my running club meetup, things intensified to the point I was limping at the end of two miles. I decided to do something I rarely do, seek professional treatment.

My physical therapist confirmed my self-diagnosis. He punctuated it by saying it’s a pretty angry case. I’ve cleared the half marathon from my calendar. The cheapskate in me hates not running a race I’ve paid for, but this one is a charity event, so I can at least feel good about the dollars going to a worthy cause.

Per my PT’s orders, I won’t run for about 10 days (today is Day 6, but who’s counting?). I’ve been prescribed very gentle exercises and I’m getting laser treatments three times per week. Once the inflammation is calmed down I’ll receive weight training exercises to target and strengthen my calves which will support the Achilles tendons.

Once I’m cleared to start running again I am to begin at 2 miles per session and increase the mileage no more than 10% per week. The 10% a week rule is sound advice that medical professionals recommend. Come to think of it, I wasn’t following that rule during this most recent training stint. Maybe that’s why I have tendonitis now. Hmmm.

In an effort to act like an adult, I am following my PTs orders and will continue to do so when it’s time to start running again. I’m not allowing myself to shop for other half marathons until I rebuild my mileage base…safely, and following the 10% per week rule.

I’m now decidedly a “woman of a certain age.” The days of playing catch-up with my running mileage  are over. If I want to do half marathons when I’m in my 70s (and I do) I have to play it smart while in my 50s.

Playing it smart is a new concept for me, I’ll let you know how it goes.🙂



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Don’t Teach Your Child to People-Please



Yesterday after work I made my weekly trip to the grocery store. I grabbed a cart and my head was down while I searched for my grocery list. I heard a child crying and a mother telling her to “act nice.” I wasn’t paying attention; it was simply ambient noise. I heard the mom say, “You see, that lady’s staring at you because you’re acting so terrible.” I looked up and the mom was holding her daughter with outstretched arms and shoving her in my face! Caught off guard, I said, “No, actually I wasn’t staring at her. Kindly leave me out of it.”

This exchange annoyed me for several reasons.

  1. The mom was being openly dishonest to her daughter.
  2. The mom was attempting to use me to manipulate the child into behaving in a certain manner. I set boundaries when people attempt to use me.
  3. She shamed her child in front of a third party (me!).
  4. Worst of all in my opinion, the mom is teaching her toddler to be a people-pleaser. Even if I had been staring, who cares?

Google “People-Pleaser” and you’ll see countless articles designed to help a person stop the behavior. That must mean it’s a damaging trait (duh). Had I not been caught off guard, I might have told the mom that how her daughter behaves is between the two of them and is none of my business. I could have locked eyes with the little girl and given her a huge smile and a high-five. While I missed the moment, hopefully what I managed to choke out provided the mom with a hint that she doesn’t have to please everyone and neither does her daughter.

After all, Heaven knows the world will be a be a better place when we women gain the confidence we so richly deserve.



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It’s More than Just a Rose

Every Monday morning between my workout and shower, I gather flowers to arrange and place on my desk at the office. Most of the time the arrangement includes several roses. Yesterday I took one single bloom so it could take center stage.


This rose is called Dick Clark. It’s from the first rose bush I ever bought. Three years ago I was at Nashville’s annual Urban Garden Festival. I wandered into the Nashville Rose Society’s tent. I’d been toying with the idea of learning to grow roses but I’d been scared off by all of those stories of roses being difficult to grow.

While in the booth looking at all of the beautiful roses for sale, I met the nicest man, Sam Jones. Sam convinced me that I could learn to grow beautiful roses. He personally selected the Dick Clark rose bush, gave me a quick lesson in deadheading spent blooms, and told me about the Nashville Rose Society (NRS) which I later joined.

That first summer I almost killed Dick Clark due to my ignorance about proper spraying, watering, etc. But Mr. Clark soldiered on and today he’s a blooming machine.

Sam died suddenly last month after suffering a heart attack while attending an American Rose Society meeting out of state. Even before Sam’s death, I thought of him every time I saw a bloom on my Dick Clark rose bush. And now, the blooms of this particular rose bush remind me of the many ways becoming a part of the rose culture has enhanced by life.

  • My rose bed is now up to 30 plants and I’m making plans for bed #2.
  • I’ve made many new friends through my membership in the NRS.
  • I began exhibiting this year and I’ve won six blue ribbons and two reds. The district rose show is in two weeks so wish me luck!
  • I’ve become an active member of the NRS and I’m serving on the Public Relations Committee for the upcoming district rose show which our society is hosting.
  • I’ve been blessed to have enough rose blooms to share with others who are bereaved, having birthdays, living in nursing homes, or just need a surprise.

I recently received a wonderful gift. A friend reached out to me via Facebook and asked me to help her plan her first rose bed. I can’t wait to help her get started on that project. Sharing my love of roses with someone else is the best way I can think of to pay it forward in appreciation for the joys that Sam Jones gave to me.

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