Things and Stuff

A few years ago, I went to a training by a lady named Ruby Payne.  She is reportedly an expert in studying the poor class and gives insight to understanding  poverty.  When I first took this class I was a fairly new teacher and I remember being fascinated by what I learned.  I wanted to share it, so I excitedly told my dad I had been to this great training, and had learned this fabulous stuff from an expert in poverty.  His response was, “You’re pretty much an expert in poverty too, ain’t ya?”   He’d lived it himself, and really didn’t care what she had to say.

In Ruby Payne’s book, she has a short test to take.  You check things off that you can do, for example, open a checking account, order from a French menu, bail someone out of jail.  Then you tally up your checkmarks, and you discover which social class you could survive in:  poverty, middle class, or wealthy.   

Among the items I checked that I was able to do was “move in half a day.”

I must confess, I could no longer check that one.  Back when I took the test, I practically owned nothing.   I was a single gal, living in a one bedroom house and had to hang my clothes on a line to dry.  It would’ve been easy with a few friends and a couple truckloads to get all my possessions out of one house and into another in a very short amount of time. 

Not now.

We started the moving process five weeks ago.  A matter of fact, I was in the throes of packing my kitchen cabinets the day I received the phone call telling me my dad had died.  Boxes of plates and dishes sat abandoned for a week while we dealt with the stuff one must deal with to bury a loved one.  When we returned from Oklahoma, I resumed life and work, and the following week we began moving.  There are still boxes to unpack at my new house, boxes to load at my old house, and dumpsters to fill down my alley.

Today I had a garage sale.  I have too much stuff.  Don’t we all?  Aren’t we just a bunch of spoiled rotten Americans? 

Here’s a little trivia to gnaw on.

The average size American home in 1950 was 983 square feet compared to  2,349 square feet in 2006.  Interesting?   Yes, I think so.

My garage sale turned out pretty good for me, but I had some tough decisions to make while preparing for it.  Should it stay or should it go?  After all, we have moved to a smaller home with practically no storage at all.  So I had to say good-bye to some old “friends”.

It seems that I get sentimentally attached to my stuff.  I had a little pink tea set that my oldest brother bought me probably 12 years ago.  I’ve held onto it because it’s one of the few things I’ve received from him.  But as I was sorting through my crap and dealing with the mental banter of keep it, sell it, keep it, sell it, keep it, sell it; these thoughts occurred to me:  1) My brother doesn’t remember giving this to me.  2) He didn’t even purchase it himself  3) He gave my sister or my mom  20 bucks in an airport once and said “Buy Angel something.”  4) It was probably the only thing in the airport gift shop under 20 bucks 5) Look how dusty it is, it’s just something else to clean.

Those thoughts made my decision much easier. I put it in the garage sale,  but I didn’t sell it.  Actually I gave it away to my realtor aunt who dropped by to put a for sale sign in the yard.  She said when she got home she would put my name on the bottom of it so I could have it back someday!!


I hope she at least dusts it first.

Winner, winner, chicken dinner

Today was a windy day.  I went to put my hat on and it didn’t fit.  I think my head is swol up over all your compliments on yesterday’s blog.

Good grief!  My intention was not for you to leave me comments about me or my blog, but you’re cool like that.   I thank you all for the sweet words.  Really, I mean that.

You rock.  Plain and simple.


I took all the names from yesterday’s comments, put them in a box, turned my head, ran my hand around a couple of times, and drew out a name.  And the lucky winner is:


Leon has been my fan probably the longest.  He was one of my first readers way back when I had a different site, and one of my first commenters, and oh yeah, he happens to be my uncle, brother and best friend of my dad. 


Congrats Leon!!


 I got 3 suggestions in comments yesterday for chicken names:  Bob in memory of my dad, Bookworm, and Sassafras.  I am taking all of them to heart.  I can’t guarantee that I can remember who is who, but I’ll try.  All these chicks look the same.  Except some are black, some are yellow, and some are black and white.  But besides that, they all look the same.

Customer Appreciation Post

Today I just want to give a shout out and let you know how much you mean to me.

Yes, you.

You make me want to do this every single day of my life. 

Even when I’m tired.  Even when I’m hungry.  Even when my brain is a pile of mush and the thoughts I think shouldn’t be shared with others. 

As I write this now, I see you.  Your faces, your comments, your encouraging words are swirling in my mind.

It isn’t always easy.  For instance, I’m in the process of changing addresses.  I was supposed to get internet service last Saturday at my new house.  You know how that goes, “Your technician will be out sometime between the hours of 8:00 a.m.  and next Friday.  Please have someone available during this time.”  As if I don’t have a life.  Okay, okay, I don’t have much of a life, but geez.  Anyway, the technician was supposed to be there on Saturday from 8:00-12:00.  So I woke up early on Saturday, (which should be against the law in the first place), and sat around in the quiet to wait for him.  Around about 8:35, I received a phone call from the company telling me that my technician called in sick.  Really?!?!  I wasn’t buying it, I’m sure he was probably hung over, or fishing.  They said they couldn’t have anyone else come out until Wednesday.  Not wanting to take time off from work, I rescheduled my appointment for tomorrow.  Another Saturday to wake up early.  This inconvenience in internet has meant that each day after work, I have come to my old house to blog.

On Wednesday, WordPress (this blogging site I use) had technical difficulties.  I had written a post about my house I’m moving from and memories from my dad in the house, but when I went to click the publish button, I got this error message stating no changes could be made and how they were working very hard to fix it, but to keep trying.  

Because I committed to doing a “Postaday” challenge, and because I am a little bit obsessive-compulsive when I make commitments (except exercise) this went against my grain and ruffled my feathers.  I had problems.  How was I supposed to publish a blog post with technical difficulties?  How could I try later when I don’t have internet at my new house and I needed wanted to get home?  How could I live with myself if I broke my “postaday” commitment to myself and the handful of readers that I have?

As much as I hated to do it, I waved the white flag and posted a status update on Facebook that read:  to my blog readers: My blogging site is experiencing technical difficulties. I don’t have internet at my new place, and I’ve got chickens to tend to, so there may not be a blog posted today. Please don’t eat rat poison. Or dance a jig.

I didn’t expect to hear much from my Facebook friends, but instead I got this: 


(Michelle) Ack…..I knew it was only a matter of time before the chickens took the place of your loyal & faithful fans!! 😉 enjoy your evening Angel!!

(Donna) ahhhh, I so look forward to them.

(Lena) Ok double blog tomorrow

(Lara) What will I read tonight??

(Sheryl) :-/

 (Jennifer)  Aww man, I was looking forward to it. 😦

(My sister Jolea, as if there is any other) What??? Nooooooooo!!! You must blog now…:/

(Linda) aww snap!

(Jay) I don’t think that was the deal!

I wish words could express how wonderful this makes me feel.  To know that my writing matters to someone out there  inspires me, encourages me, and uplifts me.  It makes me trudge ahead. 

Needless to say, I got a post up that day.  Not because I’m awesome, but because you are. 

I want to let you know how much you mean to me.  I want to give you something back in return for  the commitment you’ve made to read my ramblings, which aren’t even half good half the time.  But you stick with me anyway!

I’m going to have a small give-away to one faithful reader.  All you have to do to enter, is click here, print this form, fill it out, make sure and state your mother’s maiden name, and the last 4 digits of your social security number, have it signed in front of a notary, in blood, and witnessed by a celebrity on a deserted island.

That’s all.

No really, just leave me a comment here on my blog (not on Facebook).  Be clever, be cute, be serious, be snide.  I don’t care.  Tell me what you like to read, what you hate to eat, what I should name a chicken.  Anything.  I just want to hear from you.

In exchange, I’ll randomly choose one of you for a $25 Visa or Mastercard or something-like-that-gift card.   Accepted at lots and lots of places in the nearest 3 blocks. 

It’s not much.  I wish it could be more.  But I’m just a poor, broke cowboy’s wife schoolteacher with 14 mouths to feed.  Chicken mouths, but nonetheless mouths to feed.

I’ll announce the winner tomorrow after my internet is installed at noon.  Better make it afternoon, well sometime between noon and midnight. 

Waiting to hear from you and hoping for a sober technician…….

Pioneer Woman and my Uncle Leon-syllable counting sonsaguns

As part of my daily blog reading, I hopped over and read the Pioneer Woman’s website.   A couple of days back, she wrote a few haikus about the man who makes her hiney tingle.  Immediately, she reminded me of my Uncle Leon.  Not because they both live in Oklahoma, or not because they’re both old hippies, but they are both haiku writers.  I figured if PW can write haikus, then I can too.  Except I can’t really write haikus. So I took the liberty, (hope you don’t mind uncle), to pop over to my Uncle Leon’s Facebook page and click older posts, older posts, older posts a bajillion times until I compiled a sampling of his genius.



The sound of metal
The neighbor’s old weathervane
Makes pointing circles


What was snow covered
That left me sneeze-free for days
Now its’ not again


Snoozing on my couch
Under the ceiling fan drone
Chakra chimes jingle


the little old man
wonders of his existence
counting syllables

It’s like he has a Haiku-0-rama on his page.  People wish him happy birthday in haiku.  Friends respond to his posts in haiku.  Then the other day, he posted this……

For the truly insane. Write a Haiku poem, where the first letter of each line makes a three-letter word.

Why should we do this?
He doesn’t know the answer
You must help him now.

And boy did the haikus flow in.


Haikus aren’t terribly hard to write, unless you’re me.  Simply put, they are  3 line poems following a 5-7-5 syllable rule.

Here is my best effort:

Write me a haiku

In the comments underneath

You might win a prize!

This below is not a haiku, but just something I love and a bit of inspiration for all you poets out there!

You’re a poet and don’t know it,  but your feet show it.

They’re Longfellows.

Have fun, and remember 5-7-5!

The Winner

The winner of the $25 gift card is Brandi Cayce!

Brandi said,

How about”The Promise Land”. Those folks suffered through some trials and tribulations too. And, who would not like to buy some home grown veggies from “The Promise Land?”

This was a fun contest and I enjoyed reading all the responses.

There were funny ones like “Oleo Acres—The Cheap Spread”
 “Habitat for Insanity”, and
 “Hillbilly Hell” .

There were  faith based ones like
“Hope Acres”
“God’s Acres”
and “Beulah Land”.

There were lucky ones like
“The Branded Ace”
or “The Golden Nuggett”.

Thanks for all the ideas and we’ll do this again soon!!!

A Give-Away!!! Enter to Win!

Remember in the movie Forrest Gump when Forrest buys his shrimping boat and he discovers that shrimping is hard.  He only catches five shrimp, and the black man jokes that a couple more and he could make himself a cocktail?
Remember that old black man says, “you ever think of naming this boat?  It’s bad luck to have a boat without a name.”
So he names it the most beautiful name in the wide world:  Jenny.
Recently me and J-Dub bought a place.  A trailer house in the country.  I love our little place.  It’s my quiet oasis.  An escape.  Our little ranchette, our ranchito, our little trailer house on the prairie.  
But as much as I love it, we’ve been having some bad luck:
Day 1—I sliced my hand open ripping up carpet (blog to follow someday).
Day 3 and 4—I was home sick from work throwing my guts up.
Day something else—our guinea bird that we inherited broke his leg and then was eaten alive.
Day something else—Jason’s horse got sick
Day 4 or 5 days later—-Jason’s horse got sicker

Three days ago—-Jason’s horse died (blog to follow someday).

Too much sickness, death and pain for 4 weeks.

I’m a tad bit superstitious, so like Forrest, maybe it’s bad luck to have a trailer house in the country without a name.  Because right now we just call it “The Place”.

J-Dub calls me up.  “Where you at?”
“I’m out at The Place.”

Or I might ask him, “What are your plans.”
“I’m going to work on The Place.”

“Where’s our broom?”
“I took it to The Place.”

Even my mom is calling to say, “I’m coming out to help you work on The Place.”

We’ve gotten accustomed to it so far, but it just doesn’t sound very homey and I don’t think it will look good hanging on an arch above a cedar lined entrance.  Someday.

Jason and I have tossed around a couple of ideas, but we are having trouble roping the right one. 
So I’m having a little contest right here on my blog.
I’d like all of you who read this to submit suggestions of names for our place.

Bring on your ideas.  Stop our bad luck!!! 
Give us a name for our new little homestead and you could win a $25 gift card from Lowe’s Home Improvement.   Since that’s where I’m spending most of my money right now, it only makes sense. 

To enter to win, just think of something clever, cute, original, homey, ranchy, or catchy for us to call our new home, make sure it has good luck attached, then leave it in a comment with your name and you could win.

We’ll pick our  favorite from among the entries, and if we hate them all, we’ll just pick a winner at random!!!

This contest is going to run for a week so all you creative minds can think, and think, and think, and think.
Enter to win with as many names as you can think of.

Winner will be announced sometime next weekend 🙂

Isn’t this fun??????

Now leave a comment on here.
Down below.
See that blue comment word? 
Click it!