Category Archives: Bright Ideas

Gathering Patience

(1) Our hummingbird bird bath is proving to be quite a challenge. We’ve tried several different approaches to getting the water to circulate, but not leak. Today we installed a regular toilet float valve in the trashcan under the bird bath. we hooked everything up, smiled, and then frowned again because it was leaking from the flapper valve in the tub. We have again drained it, leaving all the rest of the system intact. We’re going to spray all around the flapper valve with FlexSeal – the stuff on TV that’s supposed to repair holes in boats, etc., to see if that will solve our problem. We’re also going to shorten the flexible hose we have that goes from the bottom of the tub  to the trash can. We’ll let the FlexSeal dry, and then we’ll test the system again. We’re SO close to having something that we can set and forget – except for extreme enjoyment. Fingers crossed!

(2) I’m trying to dye some pillowcases. I found a gloriously deep purple fabric dye. Instead of being able to do the whole process in the washer, as I did once before, we had to boil water, pour it into a large bucket, add salt and dissolve, then add the dye and dissolve. We then put in the pillowcases one at a time, submerging each. The directions say to keep stirring constantly for 15 minutes, then stir every 10 minutes for another 45 minutes. I feel as if we’re making witches brew! They said to use eye protection and wear gloves. When the 45 minutes is over, I’ll put the bucket in the sink, squeeze each pillow case out into the bucket, and then rinse in cold water while my husband dumps the rest of the dye and water. Then they go into the washer and dryer.

And why am I doing this? We have little bitty foam contoured travel pillows we use on our bed. My husband won’t use anything else. The pillow cases for them are EXPENSIVE. When they got stained, I dyed them, but the only color I could find was pink. Needless to say, we’ve been putting up with them, rather than enjoying them, for longer than we would like. I decided to give them new life by dying them a color that would go with our bedding and preferences better. If this works, we’ll be in good shape for our extra little pillows for quite awhile. (Meanwhile, I’m setting the timer for 10 minutes and stirring the cases around with a large stick of PVC pipe.) I’ve done three of the four times now. Fingers crossed on this project, too!

(3) The other project we hope to tackle today is getting our new-to-us riding lawn mower working. Rain is forecast for tomorrow, so it would be really good if we could get the civilized part of our yard looking like someone cares.  I’ll be a go-fer while my husband uses his smarts to get it going, figure out how it works, and then teaches me, too.

I’m still healing from having a wisdom tooth pulled Monday, so I’m not sure how much longer I’ll be functional. The horrendous pain is gone, but I still have aching jaws and a headache. Other than that, I feel as if I were run over by a truck. Since I was ready for the dentist to shoot me to put me out of my misery Monday morning, I’m very grateful to ONLY have aching and a headache. Small price to pay for the wonderful work of our dentist.

By the way, if you’re in the Fort Smith, Arkansas area, you couldn’t find a better dental service. His name is Wesley Moore, DDS. Moore Dental Care, 2913 S. 74th St. Fort Smith, AR72903. (479) 484-5050.

The timer went off for me to stir my witches brew for the last time.

Hope you’re having a good day, too.



Filed under Acting Like a Grownup, Bright Ideas, Challenges, Changes

Fun with my Fish

When I change the water in my fish, Sally’s, bowl, I like to change the decoration. I was tired of the ones I’ve been using, and so was looking around to see if I had anything else that would brighten Sally’s life.


I have two soap dishes that I love. One is a man in a tub and the other, a woman. I have the man beside the kitchen sink. I had the woman upstairs beside my sink in the master bath. I brought it down, cleaned it up and put it into the fish bowl.




Sally has been swimming around, sniffing at her new digs. I think she likes having a mermaid in her bowl.

Leave a comment

Filed under Amazing Animals, Bright Ideas, Changes

Bright Idea!

good idea – pinterest

Leave a comment

Filed under Bright Ideas, Housekeeping - Maintenance, I'm a slob

Birthday Festival Continues

I only had one birthday recently, but the celebrating continues!  Each year I give myself a birthday present – something I love that I don’t need.  This year I found a new website called, VIPME.COM. I splurged and ordered FOUR necklaces!


I love statement necklaces. I particularly love costume jewelry because I don’t have to worry about someone mugging me to get my ‘jewels,’ or agonizing if the jewelry doesn’t last forever. I would rather have a lot of different pieces to wear than one more expensive piece. I love all four of these.






The very best part was that I paid $20 for ALL of these together!  Happy Birthday to me….. :0)

Leave a comment

Filed under Bright Ideas, Delightful Surprises


Zen to Zany via Cathy Ruggiero

Zen to Zany via Cathy Ruggiero

I think my husband’s MIND is magical. Here’s an example –

I told you we bought a used riding mower this week. The seller helped us get it into the back of the truck. My husband said, “Here, hold this,” while he got the strap with a built-in ratchet to work to tie the mower to the truck securely. (The back of the truck was open since the mower more than filled the truck bed.)

We got it home and then tried to figure out how to get the mower OUT of the truck without hurting it, or causing one or both of us grievous harm. I was really anxious about the situation. My husband should have married a combination weight lifter/football player/basketball player to be of adequate help to him on things like this. I’m simply not tall enough or burly enough to be of much help.

I had been up the night before, having bad dreams about getting the mower out of the truck. I dreamed that it was MY job to place the metal tracks so that my husband could back the mower down to the ground from the back of the truck. In my dream, I suddenly realized the tracks were misplaced. My husband tried to back the mower onto the tracks, ending up on the ground UNDER the mower, bleeding profusely, with me trying to figure out how to get the mower OFF of him and him to an emergency room. (I may be admitting to you that I’m mental, since I find myself in this type of situation often and my imagination goes wild each time.)

In actuality, we placed the tracks in the proper place. My husband got chocks (the plastic things that you put against your tires to keep them from rolling when you’re jacking up your vehicle.) We then put the mower in neutral and ‘walked’ it down out of the truck, 6 inches at a time on one wheel at a time to be held securely by the chocks, until the mower was down far enough we could let it roll the rest of the way.

The best ideas I could come up with on my own were –

  1. leave it in the truck until we could get two burly guys over here to help us, or
  2. put the truck in the middle of the yard. Place the tracks. Put the mower in neutral and start it down the tracks. Get out-of-the-way and let it go, hoping for the best.

My husband always has to – in effect – do all things like this by himself. I’m a willing helper, but you can see we’re not exactly on the same wave length on if things are possible at all, and how we should do them. I also am a regular old lady who doesn’t have a lot of strength. Each time he thinks things out, coming up with several ways we can do whatever it is we need to do. He says we also could have rigged a rope to let the mower down slowly.

Thank goodness I’m affiliated with a person who has such clear thinking and general smarts! It’s ‘magical’ to me.


Leave a comment

Filed under Acting Like a Grownup, Attitude, Bright Ideas

Sean of the South


One of my friends gave me the URL to a blog post she liked.

I read it and cried. I bookmarked the site and subscribed because the post was so well-written and down-to-earth about things and people in the south. (This is amazing because I’m a Northerner.) Every day I have one post in my inbox. And every day the post grabs me. I can’t help but react. I smile, relating to something he says. I tear up because he tells me about good things people do. I laugh out loud because he’s a real story-teller and I can SEE the funny situation and relate because it’s so true.

I suggest that you go to Sean of the South.

If you like what you read, sign up and you’ll receive a gift every morning from Sean Dietrich. :0)

Leave a comment

Filed under Blog Repost - Wonderful Posts, Bright Ideas

Sunday Afternoon Fun

I’ve decided that this afternoon is a perfect time for me to have some fun.

I thought of some ideas for new Christmas cards and Christmas ornaments. The ideas have been driving me nuts, rattling around in my head, particularly when I’m trying to get some sleep.

I’m going to take this nice Sunday afternoon to go up to my art room and play – to at least get a start on seeing if I can bring my ideas to paper and wood.

I hope that YOU have some fun ideas on how you’ll spend this glorious day. Have some fun!

Leave a comment

Filed under Attitude, Bright Ideas, Childlike Fun, Lewis Art, opportunities

Remember Her?

Love Your Life via Stephanie Youmans Wilson

Love Your Life via Stephanie Youmans Wilson

Leave a comment

Filed under Attitude, Bright Ideas, Challenges, Childlike Fun, Encouragement

Hysterical Perspective

Save on Phone

Save on Phone

We still have a ‘land line’ at home, although technically it’s a cell phone with a fixed base. We have this because a lot of our long time financial stuff likes this information, plus really long time friends and relatives are familiar with this number.

We get a LOT of phone calls we don’t want on it – several per day – always in the middle of something we’re trying to do. We stop what we’re doing, answer it, to find no one else on the line, or an obvious robocall, or an obvious ‘wait-until-someone-answers-says-hello-twice-and-then-a-pickup-and-sales-pitch.” The disruption of whatever we’re trying to do is more than annoying, causing frayed nerves, bad moods, intemperate words, as well as a lot of time for us to regain composure and figure out what it was we were trying to do when the call came in and get back to the place we stopped.

After several months of beating his head against the wall, my smart husband bent a new computer language (Asterisk) to his will and created a phone answering system that we’re hopeful will stop most of the crank calls while allowing the people we want to hear from to call without noticing anything different.

We created a list of people and numbers from whom we would like to hear, (using three address books, our Christmas card list, and both contacts lists from our computers) and then a shorter list of people from whom we NEVER want to hear. The new system will check its lists and decide whether to let it ring through as usual, give a message, “If you’re human and you’re not selling something, press 1”, at which point it will ring through (assuming the person pressed 1), or will give you a message, “Don’t call us anymore!” and then hangs up the phone without our hearing anything.  We’ll add to our good and  bad lists as calls come in.

We have it on line now. I was talking about how it might be difficult to know if the phone system is actually working or not, since it’s been quiet all morning! My husband answered that we could look at it ‘from a hysterical perspective’ and see if anyone is on the call log. I fell apart laughing. When I told my husband that he’d said, “hysterical” rather than “historical,” he had a good laugh, as well. :0)

I’ve decided that this is too good to just forget, so the next time I ask him to check the log, I’ll ask for the HYSTERICAL perspective…


Filed under Attitude, Bright Ideas, Challenges, Changes


unfundamentalist christians via bethany kerr

Unfundamentalist Christians via Bethany Kerr

One of my really good friends here surprised and delighted me with a kindness awhile back. I thanked her profusely, telling her how much it meant to me. Her answer surprised me, and – frankly – changed the way I look at things.

She told me she looks for kind things she can do for others every day. It doesn’t have to be a big thing – smiling at a stranger, opening a door for someone, carrying a package to the car for someone, picking up something dropped and returning it, thanking someone sincerely when they don’t expect it….

The big thing to me is the different way you look at life when you have the idea of kindness in your heart. It’s a much more proactive way of looking at everything, and everyone you meet. It’s a small – but vital – difference that takes little or no time, just awareness and a willingness to see and do.

I’m so glad my friend opened my eyes to the small kindnesses I can do each day!


Filed under Attitude, Bright Ideas, Changes

New Outlook


I remarked to my husband while we were out shopping this morning that I thought we should get new dishes every 50 years. Happily, he agreed!



He chose our first set of crockery, so I chose this today. We got 8 place settings of dinner plate, lunch plate, square bowl, and coffee mug. I just love ’em! (For some reason, the dishes catch the light just right to make it LOOK like there are white specks on the plates. There aren’t.) The turquoise/gold/brown combination is nicely eye-popping, and I like the square plates and bowls. They actually look handmade, so I love that, as well.

Our purchase required that we get rid of the old dishes, so we’ve been packing them up the rest of the day. We have 4 place settings of the new dishes in the dishwasher and the other 4 settings on the counter now, waiting to go into the dishwasher. While we were packing things up to be donated to the Veterans Thrift Store in Fort Smith, I went through my cabinets and found lots of things I don’t use anymore and we packed those up, as well.

We’ll donate 5 large boxes of kitchenware, dishware, mugs, etc. tomorrow.

Here’s to our next 50 years!


Filed under Bright Ideas