Susan Marie Molloy

🌺 Life in the Oasis 🌴


Putting a Neat Little Bow on 2017

Thank you, Everyone! You made 2017 a good reading, writing, and blogging year.  Following are a few of my thoughts about this past year and how I’m looking forward to the new one.

I Thank You.  I can’t begin to name and thank all of you whose blogs I follow, read, comment, and learn from. The same goes for all of you who followed, shared — particularly by The Militant Negro —  and commented on my blog this past year. These lists are long. Nevertheless, thank you, thank you!  I have discovered many fabulous blogs here on WordPress, and I will say there is a lot of good talent here.  (To see whose blogs I follow, please take a look at my blogroll.)

2017’s Theme. A little over a year ago, I declared that 2017 would be a Year of Change for me. I had no idea how “changed” it would be from any other year. Silly. Silly, because every year, every day, every hour, every moment produces change of some sort. If we recognize that change exists, no matter its enormity or minuteness, or its quantifying levels, we’re halfway there to using it for good, or not. It’s up to us, nevertheless, how we accept, handle, and manage it.

Writing, Published Books, and Photography. Another change was writing more, and my skills improved. Perhaps that led to more of my poetry being published. Moreover, one of my photographs for a writing anthology’s cover was chosen, and several more photographs and my poetry, were published in it, too. I’m chuffed.

Left the Old Job.  About a year ago, I knew there were changes afoot with the ol’ job. I already planned on leaving that long, horrifying, so-called career I had.  (Oh, the stories, or book, I could write!)  Life would – and did – become blissful again without the lousy job and its surrounding aggravations.

Staying in Touch. Remember letter-writing, phone calls, emails, visiting? Yeah, me, too. That’s how I continued to stay in touch with my friends and family. As long as we’re on the subject, when did it become de rigueur to use Facebook messenger only? Give me a box of nice stationery and a good Cross pen, and I’m ready–

Social Media Change.  No longer do I feel like a dirty voyeur being force-fed pictures of dead or near-dead relatives laying in the hospital bed, the perfect marriages and angelic children, announcements of divorce when those “perfect marriages” fell apart, hatred, the passive-aggressive posts, the Woe-Is-Me Crowd, and particularly the incorrect quotes and statistics on memes, et cetera, et cetera, et cetera.  I left Fakebook as a whole at the beginning of the year, returned for a five-week engagement in October-November, and left again – this time permanently (except for my author page). Those couple few weeks where I popped back in solidified my thoughts that Fakebook is a vast wasteland for The Bored, The Braggarts, and The Attention-Seekers. “Silent noise,” I call it, and I am done with it. And you know what? I’m back to my old self: calm, cheerful, creative, and relishing all the productive time within my days.

Reading.  I went crazy with reading this year.  Goodreads is a good way for me to keep track of what I read, what I like, what I want to read, and to connect with other readers and authors.  This year, I read 245 books.  How did I do this?  For one, I don’t watch television.  Cut out that crap, and voilà! you have more time to accomplish real, productive things.  At work, I was able to read in my office, in between doing nothing (it was a horrifying job with no work).  Plus, many of the books I read were a length that could easily be read within the course of the day or within an hour.  I discovered a lot of writers, too.  Expanding my horizons, you see.

The Lost Art of Thanking.  This year opened my eyes to the lack of thanking, which seems to have become a new national pastime, with its passé, quaint little politeness that went the way of good manners.  This year, I was dumbstruck at the lack of thanking for the simplest things.  People don’t thank for holding a door open for them, they don’t thank for a gift made or bought for them, they don’t thank for that unsolicited compliment you give, they don’t thank for anything.  I’m speaking in generalities here; some people do thank.  However, I notice it’s more people who don’t, than do.

Tales from Daily Life.  My beau and I are enjoying our lives more and more each day, and I shared our experiences with you during this past year.  We did a little travelling. I visited my hometownCooking is still one of my passions.  We saw a lot of new movies this year, one of which we thought was bad, but most we liked.  Nevertheless, there’s a lot to do and see in our world.  Yes, there was a lot more that happened in 2017, and much of it was good,  and some not.  

Peeking into 2018.  I’ll continue to share my experiences, and keep the positive theme of my blog.  Something new is that I plan to set aside a day each week to share a blog or two of yours that I find inspirational, educational, or just plain re-bloggable.  I’m working on three (yes, three!) books to be published this year.  I’ll be gardening more.  Golfing is in sight for me.  I have some art projects that I’ll finish.  I plan to re-acquaint myself with the art of sushi-making at home.

I hope you had a good, productive, happy, and healthy year, and I wish for you the type of 2018 you want and deserve.

Tonight my beau and I are headed to a New Year’s Eve party, and I’m looking forward to turning the page on the ol’ calendar.

Be happy you’re alive. Be happy you have today. Look forward to tomorrow.

See you next year (ha ha ha).

As ever,


To see what was up in 2016, read “Wrapping Up 2016.”



Changes Are Constantly Afoot This Year

To say that the past several months were busy for me is an understatement. When last November rolled around, I consciously thought about making 2017 a Year of Change. January came, I turned the page in my calendar to begin 2017, and so it has been. I took on more worthwhile and enhancing activities, and worked on closing some tasks and projects that were dogging me for months – and in some cases, years.

I also:

  • will be published this month in a grand publication, which will include both my poetry and photographs (stayed tuned for when that happens!);
  • published several poetry chapbooks and a poetry anthology;
  • returned to reading books (almost) every day, and writing reviews;
  • am writing letters to family and friends more habitually;
  • ate more wisely, which leads towards me feeling better;
  • cleaned out my family recipe clippings, including duplicates and triplicates;
  • found just the right photograph albums to prepare organizing my pictures and memorabilia;
  • pared down possessions that either reminded me of people or events that are best left in history’s garbage can;
  • stayed off most social media, except where it benefits my writing and business;

Original photography by (c)Susan Marie Molloy, 2017.

There is much more, many events beyond my control or even within my radar, but nonetheless made this a memorable year.  A friend with whom I needed to stay away from (remember the 2016 elections?) recently contacted me with hat in hand to apologize for contributing to fake news and hyperbole.  I’ll let bygones be bygones; I believe she’s sincere.

I am trying hard to let go of the aggravation of people not thanking. It’s beyond my understanding how there seems to be more and more people who just don’t thank, or even acknowledge, anymore. Letting go and understanding that it’s a matter of different upbringing – or something – has been difficult for me. I can’t change them, but I need to change my level of disappointment with them.

And now, here we are with a little more than eighty days left in 2017. Whether I get done all I set out to do or not, this was a productive and life-changing year for me. I don’t know what next year will bring; heck, who knows about what the next hour will bring?

All in all, I maintain that no matter what, changes will always be afoot.

©Susan Marie Molloy, and all works within.

My Collection of Poetic Epicurean Delights

susan-marie-molloy-grapes-suzetteOne day, while writing notes upon notes about my observations of the world, I realized I possessed a baker’s dozen of poems in my repertoire that spoke about eating and drinking. What the heck — I covered coffee, candy, fruit, meals, and more, in various forms of poetry.

I decided that it was high time I put these little poems in a collection and published them on Amazon Kindle.

As you read each poem and delight in these courses, you will read about each poem’s style and the background which inspired me to put pen to paper. Bon apétit!

This, my latest book of poetry is, “Grapes Suzette: A Collection of Poetic Epicurean Delights” is now available on Amazon Kindle.

(c)Susan Marie Molloy, and all works within.





Reading Marathon

“Susan! How’s that self-imposed reading marathon going for ya?”

Glad you asked.

I set a goal to read fifty-two books this year. So far, I’ve completed sixteen.

My 2017 reading endeavor started off with a quick reading of K. Collins’ “Declutter Your Home Effectively . . .” I didn’t learn anything new, really, so this was just a refresher and a boost to begin this Year of Change for me.  Less is more, keep your stuff in order.  OK.  Got it.

One of the strangest books I read was Jean Webster’s “Daddy Long Legs.” Young orphan college girl blossoms into a woman, while her much older benefactor provides for her and never really answers her letters to him. She addresses many letters to him as “Daddy-Long-Legs” or “Daddy.” Then they fall in love and marry. The storyline was psychologically strange to me. I never liked the 1955 Fred Astaire-Leslie Caron movie, either. However, the 1919 Mary Pickford-Mahlon Hamilton silent version was a lot more palatable (you can find it for free on the Internet).

“The Beautiful and Damned” by F. Scott Fitzgerald reminded me that broken people exist, and have since the beginning of time, and not much changes but names and dates. “Only Yesterday” and “Since Yesterday” by Frederick Lewis Allen – books I last read in high school – helped to flesh out that era between the two world wars.

My favorite book so far this month is “Anthem” by Ayn Rand. It’s one of the best Dystopian books I’ve come across. Her writing style drew me in, and I couldn’t put it down ‘til the last page. It’s a little like “Nineteen Eighty-Four” and some scenes remind me of “Logan’s Run.” Since “Anthem” is a novella, you can read it in an evening.

There are other books I read, from sociology (“The Indian as Slaveholder and Secessionist” by Annie Heloise Abel) to a children’s book (“Are You My Mother?” by P. D. Eastman). One fiction-romance book turned me off – vulgarities, I don’t need – so I never really finished it, and I deleted it from my Kindle. For me, vulgarities take away from a story and it’s not a part of my real world life, either.

What’s up for February?

Some writing, and definitely more reading. So far I’ve put “Old Creole Days” by George W. Cable and “Every Soul Hath Its Song” by Fanny Hurst on my list. Cable is a new author to me; Hurst grabbed my attention years ago with “Imitation of Life.”

To see what I’m up to, stop by my Goodreads page by clicking HERE.

See you here with some of my life’s updates (not all about reading!) and my musings in the days to come.

©Susan Marie Molloy, and all works within.


A Loss, But Yet A Gain

I lost a good friend today.

The end was unhurried and painful, and it was something completely avoidable.

We knew one another since our days working in the Personnel Department, as far back as 1980. We briefly lost touch with one another when I temporarily left my job to return to college, and we struck up again when I returned to work.

We had tons of fun visiting one another on breaks, going out to lunch, and we even took a few business trips to Washington, DC. Then, when the time was right for her, she retired. I stayed on since I had a couple more years to go before I could take my early retirement.

We texted quite a bit, wherein the topics were the news of our lives, trips, recipes, a few jokes, mourning the deaths of colleagues.

Last summer, her texting increased. “Do you like watching the Presidential debates as much as I do?”

“Yes,” I texted back.  It was as innocent as that.

And we would share nothing more than, “I watched last night,” and our opinions on the speakers’ clothing fashion.  It was as innocent as that.

Then the final two candidates were announced, and her texts became even more frequent. They were off the deep end, and going deeper into the abyss.

In a nutshell, my friend began a daily spam-texting spree with obvious misinformation about “the other candidate.” I support free speech and opinions, but passing along unmistakable lies and grotesque spins is not responsible, and therefore, not conducive to intelligent conversation. Anyone who was inclined to fact-check would see it was all twisted and full of lies.

She went into a meltdown, fomenting an unrelenting negative obsession with whom she didn’t like.

Though I asked her repeatedly, nicely, then boldly to please stop sending me such texts, she nevertheless continued.

Today, I removed her number from my cell phone, but not without first to cheer, then mourn, the friendship we once had. She didn’t respect me. (In all of our long friendship, never did I berate who she liked in anything, nor did I ever discuss politics with her, and neither did she until this go ‘round.)

I wish her internal peace and acceptance.

There are reasons for setting boundaries and for etiquette. They are there to govern how we act in consideration of others and to protect what we deem acceptable to ourselves.

No one should be force-fed crap. No one deserves that. No one.

©Susan Marie Molloy, and all works within.