Balloons: holding on, then and now

Is there anyone that doesn’t love balloons? We know they need to be disposed of properly to be good ocean stewards, but balloons are fun and festive, except when they POP. I still scream when I hear the loud explosion of a popped balloon.

Do you think this curly haired little girl in her flannel nightgown might have imagined C.S. Lewis’ quote would come to fruition?

For the present is the point at which time touches eternity.

Then…

Me, age 3. I have those Chinese mudmen that are on the mantel.

…and now

My favorite boy, age 2 (2018)

To a special first birthday and lots of balloons.

Char’s first birthday August 2020

#WordlessWednesday

“Vas ist Los” or “Was geht ab” auf Deutsch

What’s up?

This is just a random post to test the waters with the new WordPress format WHICH I HATE HATE HATE. For me, it’s taking all the fun out of writing. It’s clumsy and NOT user-friendly. 

By now if you have read even a couple of my posts, you know that I am unapologetically a MOM first and foremost. All I ever wanted was to be the mom of one boy, and my wish came true. Not only is he brilliant and kind and a great dad, he’s one of the funniest people I’ve ever known. 

He’s a professor of German language and philosophy. That’s actually what his Yale PhD is called: Germanic Language and Literatures.

At my insistence, he’s been teaching it to Angel Boy 2.0  but it’s harder than it seems. We do refer to raccoons as Waschbär, though, so that’s progress, I guess. 

I don’t speak Deutsch, I do better in French or Spanish, but I used to help when he was first taking German in high school, like conjugating trinken to getruken.

We practiced with 3X5 cards every day until his conversational skills surpassed my ability to decipher even a single word.

When he did his junior year abroad in Goettingen, I visited him (as the good Jewish mommy-drone that I am) and was continually impressed by his fluency and beautiful accent. People thought he was a native speaker, and I was/am so proud of my Engel Junge (Angel Boy). 

I learned to say Tschüss instead of auf Wiedersehen every time we left a store, and that’s about it for my language skills.

He wrote a book entitled The Geological Unconscious
GERMAN LITERATURE AND THE MINERAL IMAGINARY 

It probably won’t be read by too many people but that’s OK ‘cos I’m mentioned in it, so my life’s work is done.

Here’s the link to that post: https://enchantedseashells.com/2020/05/14/happy-birthday-to-meeeee/

Thoughts about Blogging

(An alternate title could be “Please scream inside your heart” like the signage at that theme park in Japan meant to discourage screaming on rollercoasters and reduce the spread of Covid-19.)

I’ve blogged since the summer of 2012. On one sunny day in June, my DIL told me I was really funny and I should write things down and begin to blog.

I knew nothing about blogs; never even read one, so she took the reins and opened a WordPress account for me.

That was eight years ago, as I was reminded by my WP anniversary.

At its heyday in 2014, my little blog averaged around 7,500 visits a month. For some unknown reason, my highest read posts were recipes.

After attending a BlogHer convention, I was excited and energized, ready to monetize, to grow and expand my brand and my voice.

I’ve always been a writer, especially about things that cause me to wax passionately: saving wolves, rescuing abused animals, finding humor in life from my own lens; researching and meeting and learning about all kinds of people (from Al Gore to His Holiness the Dalai Lama), reviewing cool products, and most of all, I LOVED responding to readers and comments from all over the world.

I still do. I respect and appreciate your time and the effort to reach out to a virtual stranger and engage in conversation.

Now I notice that my posts only have a handful of likes and some none at all.

My overall followers from all platforms is around 3500.

Did I lose my enthusiasm?

Nope.

I know why, I DO, but I still can’t talk about what happened except to say that if you read between the lines on certain posts, you might catch a glimpse of infinite profound sadness, more death than death because I’m still alive and breathing.

The walking dead. An episode of the Twilight Zone in real life. A literal black hole.

As I’m slowly getting back into the rhythm and comfort of writing, finding my voice again, I’d like you to know that I appreciate everyone who has stayed faithful to my blog and continues to read my words, even the ones between the lines.

Much love. Seriously. ‘Cos if there’s one thing I know for sure, it’s what love is. And what it is not. On any planet. Stars might be crazy, but I’m not, so I’ll continue to scream inside my heart. And my head. In a princessy way, of course.

 

*Toothbrush*Holiday Stocking Stuffer Idea*

It’s almost Thanksgiving which means it’s time for the WordPress blogpost snow (yippee!!) AND definitely time to think about gift giving. I’m always in a quandary about how to fill a stocking with something thoughtful AND useful.

If you’re like me and feel that good health and hygiene are important, think about this!

It’s perfect for all ages, and who can actually remember when they last replaced their toothbrush? Hmmm?

I was lucky to receive a sample package of Doctor Plotka’s™ Toothbrushes to try, and I’m super impressed!

Mouth Watchers becomes Doctor Plotka’s™! New look – Same brush!

Doctor Plotka™ is the leading toothbrush for better health! With naturally antimicrobial, soft flossing bristles that are ultra thin at the tip to properly reach and brush away food and plaque in normally missed areas, you’ll keep the dentist away and sport a stunning smile.

Floss like a boss with Doctor Plotka’s™ toothbrush!

DENTIST DEVELOPED – Dr. Ronald Plotka designed this innovative toothbrush as part of his thriving 40+ year Boston-based dental practice. Its technology has helped hundreds of his patients prevent cavities and achieve better oral health.

  • NATURALLY ANTIMICROBIAL* BRISTLES For Better Health – Infused with silver to naturally eliminate 99.9% of bacteria that grows on the bristles between uses, this innovative tool is always  clean and ready for the next use! Doctor Plotka™ helps achieve better overall health by not reintroducing harmful bacteria into your mouth and body.

  • FLOSSING BRISTLES™ – Revolutionary, dual-layered bristle structure provides superior cleaning: the outer bristles, thin as a human hair, gently brush away food and plaque in places other brushes miss! Getting deep down the groves, this toothbrush cleans where 90% of cavities form! With thicker inner bristles, you’ll get a complete cleaning of the teeth and gums every time.
  • LONG LASTING POLYESTER BRISTLES – You’ll get up to one extra month worth of use thanks to the polyester bending and upgraded properties. (The ADA – American Dental Association- recommend changing your toothbrush every 3 months. The Doctor Plotka’s™ brush will last about 4!)

Better teeth=better health. Toothbrushes come in Manual and Power, available in Adult, Youth and and Travel sizes and range in price from $4.99 to $24.99 for the power pack.

 

Follow Doctor Plotka™
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(I was not financially compensated for this post. I received a sample for review purposes. The opinions are completely my own.)

Snow…Snow…SNOW! In Southern California!

Reflective
like the nacre of a million
perfectly pristine pearls
A confection of frosted pines
                                                           (by Princess Rosebud)


SNOW

It might not be a big deal to a lot of you who experience snow every winter, but snow falling to around one thousand feet in the foothills of our valleys and mountains is a big deal for this Southern California girl!

An arctic storm brought a lot of snow down to almost record breaking levels; of course I needed to end 2014 with a snowball fight. The snow was amazingly light and fluffy.

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A winter wonderland  and only about twenty minutes away!

snow8LOOK!! A REAL BISON! Blurry ‘cos we were driving…snowbisonPhoto gallery of all my pics. Very nice special effects from WordPress with the snow over snow but then I’m easily amused.

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Sunset On A Heavenly California Horizon

A photographic essay. Southern California. End of November. Big surf. Late afternoon.

It’s so cool to showcase this amazing Carlsbad sunset embellished by WordPress snow.sunset1

 

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A glorious ending to a spectacular day. Happy December!



He Could Have Been a Serial Killer

Was I crazy to invite a man from the virtual world of blogging into our home?

Not a meet-up in a coffee shop; not at a public location where it’s safe, where we could arrive and depart without fear of being followed.

I didn’t even blink when I shared our address with this “friend”.

His online photo could have been fake; his writing just a ploy to lure a naive female to let down her guard and welcome him with open arms.

But there had to be trust on his end too, right?

He didn’t know what he was walking into — literally. He may have never been heard from again.

As it is, I think he could possibly be forever traumatized by the sheer number of seashells strewn on every shelf, adhering to most walls…

seashell mirror

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

He could have been a serial killer — to parrot my mom, who always cautioned me not to be too trusting, not to get into cars with strangers — you know, mom-speak.

My mom died long before the world of the internet connected those of us who might never have had their paths cross.

Although we didn’t know him at the time, this young man attended the same university as my son, and yes, we were probably only rows away from each others’ families on graduation day, but the internet facilitates these exact types of serendipitous human bridges.

So, on one of the hottest days of the year, the Jester himself, writer extroidanaire at The Matticus Kingdom (you really should follow his blog!) stopped by Casa de Enchanted Seashells to spend the afternoon with me and my tugboat man where I obnoxiously tried to stuff him full of food (Jewish mom syndrome).

Oh, and he’s a published author as well, with Fauxpocalypse: a collection of short fiction about the end of the world that wasn’t–available on Amazon.

There was lively conversation on all fronts and I can’t wait ’til he’s back in the area with his lovely wife and the Little Prince.

Nope, not a serial killer, but an awesome guy!

You were wrong this time, Mom!


Have you ever invited a stranger into your home? Was it a good or bad experience?

Thankful Thaturday: Ten Things of Thankful

1326892407_clip-art-shell-beach-clip-art-pearl-wallpaper-1400x1050I don’t often, (I really mean hardly EVER) participate in hops or join groups of bloggers writing about the same subject, including gratitude, but I met a new friend online, Lizzi Rogers, who writes at  Considerings, and she inspired me to share a list of ten things for which I’m thankful.

Here’s an extra one…Thank you for your kind invitation to share my Ten Things of Thankful.

Considering that my personal planet shifted on April 28 when I received That Dreaded Call at 3AM, causing me to fly  (literally) across the country to be at my son’s side in the hospital, living there 24/7 for about two weeks while he underwent emergency surgery,  helped to pack up his office at Yale (he’s a professor) and brought him back to California to recuperate — two days after I got home, I had to take my tugboat man hub to the airport ON MY BIRTHDAY to begin a month-long assignment — AND two days after THAT, I began to see sparkles in my eye that had nothing to do with diamonds, that was a very mean signal that I had a retinal tear for which I had laser surgery to repair (successfully). Whew! That was ONE LONG SENTENCE,  but hardly worthy of a Faulknerian comparison.

Oh, and my lovely MacAir exhibits the BLACK SCREEN OF DEATH so I’m on a very old but still functioning Lenovo laptop, which leads me to my first of TEN THINGS OF THANKFUL

1. I turned 60 on May 14, and I am old but still functioning, just like that old Lenovo.

2. My very painful laser surgery to protect my retina from further damage in my left eye was a SUCCESS!

3. I didn’t lose any sight, even peripheral vision is totally intact.

4. My absentee mariner husband sent me a box of presents — because he is AWESOME and makes me happy even in absentia.

5. There’s nothing more fun than shopping, except for knowing that very same plastique has the ability to purchase an obscenely expensive ticket to fly that very same day 3,000 miles to the East coast (actually two tickets, ‘cos hub came with me).

6. I’m VERY THANKFUL that my DIL refused to leave my son’s side in the ER and insisted they admit him, and that action actually SAVED HIS LIFE.

7. I’m glad that I listened to my RN mom who told me to never leave anyone’s side when they’re in the hospital and she taught me how to be a VERY ASSERTIVE patient advocate.

8. After a brief setback with a couple of infections that responded to antibiotics, my son will have a full recovery from major abdominal surgery, so every day is a wonderful day, because it was touch and go for a while and I don’t even want to think about what could have happened.

9. The eye surgeon told me I can start going back to the gym and resume my work out routine of boot camp, weight lifting, yoga, and Pilates.

10. My wonderful tugboat man is coming home this week! (Hopefully, saying it doesn’t jinx it. You can never be sure until he’s on the plane.)

And now I’m on my way to the Genius Bar at the best Apple Store ever, located in the same shopping center as Anthropologie! Hopefully, the black screen of death is a simple fix. Fingers crossed.

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A Rose of Many Petals #Wordless Wednesday #Photography #Flowers

Lush, sumptuous, sensuous roses courtesy of my good RN friend whose visit included books on tape (I was unable to read anything for three days thanks to a torn retina and hellish laser surgery).

In full bloom from her garden, their fragrance is  delicate and strong, as every rose should be.

Petals, Illuminated

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Petals, Layered

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Petals Caressing Petals

rose6 Beautiful Curves 

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Full-Blown Roses in a Clear Vaserose5

 

 

#Wordless Wednesday #Photography #Flowers #Roses