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Category Archives: Love and Relationships

Pushing It

I am just old enough to remember when Christmas decorations in the stores went up the day after Thanksgiving, which was the same day Christmas carols started playing on the radio, and families in the old neighborhood put up their outside decorations, come mild or bitter cold breezes off Lake Michigan. In fact, it was a treat to go Downtown to see what Marshall Field’s window themes were for any given year, but you couldn’t do that until after Thanksgiving.

Slowly, decorations and the not-so-subtle hinting at great store bargains began creeping up before Thanksgiving, and so much so that well, nowadays you can stick your head into any one of several ginormous arts-crafts-sewing stores, and yes, The Decorations are up and serenaded by Eartha Kitt belting out “Santa Baby.” In July. Or – gasp! – June.

My Ma told me that when she was growing up, nobody put up decorations – including at home – until Christmas Eve. If you watch old movies (like I do), you might see the same craziness in any given Holiday-themed movie. I could be mistaken, but Barbara Stanwyck didn’t put up her tree until Christmas Eve in the 1945 movie, “Christmas in Connecticut.” And if I remember my history right, it was Franklin Delano Roosevelt who got the ol’ ball rolling with asking stores to start their Christmas season right after Thanksgiving. It was to get the draggy Great Depression economy rolling again, you know.

I’m not blaming anyone for the whole moving-Christmas-up-and-up-and-up. It’s just that it would be so nice to have that spirit, that goodwill feeling, that feeling of brotherhood and love all year ‘round, or at least during the six months’ time those decorations are up and Der Bingle starts dreaming of his ”White Christmas.”  People have become so numb and zombie-like with every holiday, in fact.

I read a tract somewhere wherein a priest wrote that in the anticipation of a baby’s birth, the joy of it coming didn’t end on the day it was born. In fact, the greater joy came on its birth day, and continued well past that day, throughout the years. Conversely, with Christmas, people have all this joy and merry-making for Jesus’ birth (if that’s how they observe the holy day), but it fizzles out the day after Christmas. I found that interesting, and it makes sense.  But it doesn’t.   What has Christmas become? You and I know that answer.

Still, I’d like that total societal feeling of consideration, love, and cordialness year ‘round, but maybe that’s too “Pollyanna,” and I’ve become jaded.

But it is worth a try. Isn’t it?

What I saw this past week:

“From the newspaper and around town.”

©2017 Susan Marie Molloy and all works within.

 

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The Presentation That Wowed Me

We had a little intimate dinner the other night at one of our favorite Japanese restaurants. The occasion was “just because,” the conversation was cozy, as was the ambience.

Our orders placed and hot green tea poured, we continued on our familiar conversation about books, current events, and us. The steaming Miso soup and icy ginger-lettuce salad came and went.

Then it arrived.

My order – vegetable tempura – brought a gasp to my breath and speechless admiration.

“The Presentation That Wowed Me”
A fresh orchid blossom topped my serving.

It was beautiful!

©2017 Susan Marie Molloy and all works within.


Vampire’s Delight?

Every once in awhile, we host a cocktail party, and last Friday we featured this season-appropriate drink we found.  It was a hit.

I present to you The Vampirita.

“The Vampirita”
(c)2017 Susan Marie Molloy original photograph.

1/2 ounce tequila
3/4 ounce lime juice
3/4 ounce simple syrup
1 ounce Cabernet wine

Fill cocktail shaker with shaved ice and all ingredients, except the wine.
Shake well and strain into a martini glass.
Slowly add red wine to float on top of margarita.
Serve with a ghoulish laugh.

The Cabernet floating on top really looked like fresh red blood to me. Creepy. Creepy good.

Everyone enjoyed it.

• Drink sensibly, responsibly, and judiciously. Or I’m telling Mom.

Drink source LINK.

©2017 Susan Marie Molloy and all works within.


A Sweet Day

“Lilacs in Silver Bowl”
(c)2017 Susan Marie Molloy

Practically a decade or so ago, or somewhere thereabouts, my beau and I decided that because we are unconventional people who don’t blindly celebrate or observe “Hallmark Holidays,” we would have a standing date on a certain day in October to go out and have lunch or supper. And if it so happened to fall on Sweetest Day, so be it. Our day is Our Day.

We did just that this past Sunday. It was lunch this year at the usual designated place before heading off to the even better part of our date, a polo match. We stayed for two matches, enjoyed a ginger ale, got a little color from the sun, people-watched, then it was off to pick up Chinese – beef chop suey, wouldn’t you know! – to eat at home.

We decided afterwards to watch a 1947 movie, “New Orleans,” with Billie Holliday (her only film), Louis Armstrong (as himself), Arturo de Córdova, Woody Herman, and the incomparable Meade Lux Lewis. My beau and I enjoy old movies, particularly ones that either aren’t mainstream or well-known. This particular movie was pretty good, but it was the music that grabbed us, and we wished there was more.

So, there you have it – our own day, annually celebrated, and not one Hallmark card to toss in the drawer at the end of the day.

©2017 Susan Marie Molloy and all works within.


Changes Constantly Afoot

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;

“Optimism”
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.


Time

This is a year of change for me. There are so many new, different, and maybe even unknown changes afoot, and combining all that makes for a busy life.

Some of these changes are purposely a part of my own creation. I’ve resolved to read more – a lot more – and my Kindle bookshelf holds nearly 400 books ready for my eager brain. I’m a big proponent of knowledge, no matter the subject. And, naturally, I’ll continue to share my reviews of the most memorable books.

I’ve been honored to read and review others’ books. In fact, I was sought out particularly by Cathy Kennedy to review her “Meeting of the Mustangs,” which you can read my review HERE ON GOODREADS. It’s a sweet young adult novel that I believe many of any age would like.

Currently, I started reading “Grounded” by Kate Forest. Again, she and her publicist contacted me to ask for a Read and Review.  I’m honored, and I anticipate my review will be written and done sometime in the next week.

I’m also looking forward to digging out my dad’s books on World War II. They are so old that they each cost less than a dollar. I found one for fifty cents. Wow.

Recently, we spent time away on vacation, and the change in scenery and weather was fabulous – and much, much needed. The morning sunrises were breathtaking, and once, when I took the dogs out at 4 a.m., the constellations were as clear as anything you could see out in the country without a speck of white light. We really needed that time away.

Part of this change included a very non-traditional Thanksgiving. We roasted a small Butterball turkey breast, steamed some butter beans, whipped up some creamy mashed potatoes, and ended with cherry Jell-O and canned whipped cream. I could have done without the canned whipped cream (bleh!), but I didn’t have the resources to have fresh.

Some of the change are coming out of left field.  I’m vacillating on the status of a friendship of many years.  My friend seems to have taken up with texting me every day, but not with “HI! Here’s what I’ve been up to . . .” but, rather, with multi-paragraph snippets of the “news,” sports scores, and unfunny editorials written in a voice reminiscent of the lame style you would find on a paper placemat at an out-of-the-way diner.  I’ve gently said I can find my own news topics, please get over your candidate not winning, and how are you doing?  Nope, they still come with a “Ting! Ting!” text alert.  Ugh.  I need to find the “unsubscribe” button on those texts.  I want to remain friends, but holy moly!

And here we are – the last day of November. It seems that summer was just here, and now the Holidays are inching forward. And before you know it, it will be 2017.

As fast as time is racing, I’m resolved to live in the day and savor each hour as best as I can.

©Susan Marie Molloy and all works within.


Life in the Oasis

LifeInTheOasisCover2Here’s to starting 2016 off on the right foot:  I just published my second book of poetry, “Life in the Oasis.”

It’s a compilation of poems – twelve in all – that brings love and joy together.

If you like poetry and love romance, I invite you to get “Life in the Oasis: A Collection of Poems” through Amazon Kindle.  You can link directly to it HERE.

Keep 2016 going on the right foot – stay positive and I wish you a beautiful new year!

 

©Susan Marie Molloy, and all works within.


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