Crunch ‘n Munch

 

Box of Crunch ‘n Munch in hand, I sit outside the gym in my car. Normally, I love working out but on that day…I do not want to go in. I would rather eat the sugary popcorn.

I see a car pull in beside me and an elderly lady gets out. She is small with gray curly hair. Behind my tinted windows, I watch her grab a gym bag and head through the double doors, slowly but surely.

In that moment, I look down in disgust at what I’m putting in my mouth and realize something. I’m over 30 years younger than that sweet lady and here I was making excuse after excuse. I grabbed my bag and trash the box on the way in, eager to start my workout.

Point learned that day, you never know who is watching so set an example in all that you do. Be mindful of the impression you are leaving on individuals. Be a better person. Live in a way that is worthy of being looked up to. Be an inspiration to others by always being kind and considerate even when going through life’s joys and struggles.

I found my curly-haired inspiration in the gym that day, introduced myself and thanked her. She looked at me in puzzlement. I smiled and simply said, “For being you’. 🙂

Volunteering Matters

You’ve never really lived until you have done something for someone who can never repay you.

I can’t take credit for that line, I found it on Google but it fits perfectly as to what my description of volunteering means. Simply giving your time and energy to make someone’s day better. Lots of us donate our money to causes we find worthy but what about taking an hour or so a week to see what kind of difference it can make. Pick a cause and make it a family fun day, it’s never too early to teach your kids the satisfaction of giving back!

Pick a cause you are passionate about. I love animals and volunteer frequently at the local animal shelter. There are many small tasks that have to be done such as bathing puppies, setting up litter boxes or taking the dogs on a walk. Just 15 minutes could make a big difference to a poor dog who has been left abandoned and is eager for a human touch. Seeing their eyes light up when you walk in to pet them is one of the biggest rewards I receive!

Another passion of mine are elderly people and their well-being especially those in the nursing homes. What is really horrible to think about is how many of these loving souls have been left behind by their family or may simply not have anyone left to visit or take care of their needs. I have signed up to give my time to a local nursing home and am awaiting clearance on paperwork but I am looking forward to doing whatever it takes to put smiles on some sweet, wrinkled faces.

You may not be passionate about either of these causes but there are plenty of volunteering opportunities available. Do some research in your community or simply search “volunteering opportunities” for your town. It’s a great way to make a difference, you’ll feel appreciated and needed. It also provides an opportunity to give back what has been given to you. You may find out by helping others that the person you may help most will be you.

 

Forever and A Day

I love my friends. All of them…even the ones who are unhappy and jealous, they are the ones who need my caring and understanding the most. I want my friends to be successful and happy. I want to be there for each loss or gain with a smile and a word of encouragement. A friendship has no room for negativity and bitterness. As you move forward in life, you may have to cut loose some from your circle of friends. It’s all part of your personal growth.

I cherish dearly the people who are there for me, regardless if we speak daily, weekly or once a year. True friendship doesn’t have an expiration date. One of my oldest friendships started in college and although we seldom speak, I know she will always be there for me without a doubt.

There have been times when I’ve been a horrible friend, I’ve canceled plans and gotten into arguments with people who were only trying to help me. I’ve not always been an easy person to get a long with but in the end, I’ve realized my mistakes and corrected them. A real friendship isn’t always going to be sunshine and rainbows, it’s going to have its ups & downs. Make sure you understand where the other person is coming from and realize they may have a valid point too. Just agree to disagree, don’t let something minor turn into something major!

Best friends should make you laugh a little harder, cry a little less and smile a lot more. They should defend you even behind your back. They should encourage and uplift and motivate you. They should respect you. They should need you. They should love you even when you aren’t very lovable. They should love all of you…the confused you, the weird you, the imperfect you, the crazy you.

How long will we be friends? Forever and a day. 🙂

 

 

First Celebrity Crush

That picture above is what started it all. I had that same exact poster hanging in my bedroom. When I would walk by it, I would look into his eyes and fantasize about being his one day. I was obsessed with NKOTB and knew everyone of their songs by heart. I had posters, pins, books, albums, tshirts and much more. I loved his bad boy image and still this day, think he’s an attractive man.

Piercings & Tats

Continuing on with my 31 day blog challenge…

Currently, only my ears are pierced. I had my nose pierced years ago and took it out for my job. I thought it was cute at the time and I have a small scar on the left side of my nose as a reminder. 🙂

I have 2 tattoos that are located on my back. The first one says ‘Spoiled’ and I’ve had it over ten years now. I have to admit that I was a little wild in my past and decided one of those wild nights to get the tattoo. It’s not the best work and I’ve wanted it covered up for years but I haven’t found anything I like well enough.

The second one is your basic white girl tattoo of a half moon and stars. Another spur of the moment decision but the quality of the work is better. Would I get another tattoo? Yes. Never say never. 🙂

Oh What a Night

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If a picture could speak. 🙂 In life, I feel you must learn to laugh at yourself and to have fun. It’s okay to be serious but you need a release sometimes.

This photo was taken around 7 years ago, my friends and I were out for a little drive one evening around Barbourville. As always when we were together, we were gossiping and laughing till our sides hurt. Someone brought up a story about a street name in town we had never heard before and instantly, our curousity came out. As we drove around, we devised a couple of plans to locate this street.

The winning plan involved someone going into the police department and asking for directions on how to find it. Guess who volunteered. Me! I remember going in and asking then walking back out, laughing so hard I was in tears. This picture represents a great night with some great friends, doing nothing but being our silly selves and enjoying every minute of it.

Top Ten Food

My top ten food list:

  1. Chicken, fixed any way. My favorite is grilled.
  2. Chinese. No explanation required. I love it all, from lo mein noodles to moo goo gai pan.
  3. Red velvet cake. My absolute favorite but you can’t go wrong with plain chocolate.
  4. Thin crust chicken pizza with alfredo sauce, mushrooms, black olives, tomatoes and green peppers.
  5. Eggs, scrambled or hard-boiled. They are so versatile.
  6. Tacos, chicken or beef, hard or soft. Give me all of them!
  7. Birthday cake pancakes from iHop, one of the best things I’ve ever eaten.
  8. Vegetables, of any kind. I don’t eat them solely because of my diet, I truly love the taste of them. My favorites are broccoli, asparagus and zucchini.
  9. Mom’s biscuits & gravy.
  10. Iced coffee, my way.

Personality

Today’s blog challenge is to name 3 personality traits that I am proud of. Honestly, I feel I have a HUGE personality so it may be hard to pinpoint the top 3. 🙂

I am caring, almost too much. The well-being of others is essential to me. I care about others being comfortable, or happy and when they are sad, I find ways to uplift or encourage. In my opinion, my happiness doesn’t depend solely on me, it’s also based on my interactions in relationships and people around me. I never forget what I’ve been through and remind myself of that when trying to help others. My heart is filled with compassion.

I am sociable. Picture this, preschool report card…Samantha is an intelligent child but she talks a lot. Fast forward to present day and I’m the same way, still. I love people, I really do. I enjoy making others smile and engaging in small conversation about their day, their pets or their problems. I love getting to know others and making someone comfortable in an awkward situation. I make friends very easily and feel I can talk to anyone freely and candidly.

I am strong. Stronger than what most realize. I may have a giving, caring heart but I know my boundaries by never forgetting what I’ve been through. I may shed a tear or two but they will be quickly replaced with a smile. Instead of focusing on the negative around me, I look for positives in every step. Although, I make mistakes and falter at times, I will never be kept down. I have scars but they do not prevent me from living and loving and they never will.

 

Shhh…

Guilty pleasures…I could write a book about this. Instead, I’ll choose one and share it with you all. I love to shop at thrift stores & vendor malls. I love to rummage through others junk!

To some, this may have zero appeal but to me, it’s like going through Grandma’s attic. I get excited and can’t wait to see what treasures I may find. By treasures I mean something that I will value personally, regardless if it’s worth a nickel. I love old things.

Rotary phones. Lace doilies. Vinyl records. Vintage typewriters. Wooden toys. Old magazines and books. Glass lamps. Posters. Cameras. Timepieces. Wooden tennis rackets. I could go on and on. I imagine a story behind each item and let my mind soar. 🙂

The Cow & Cornbread

My earliest childhood memory isn’t of an iPhone or playing games on Facebook, it involves a cow and some cornbread.

Growing up in the hills of Kentucky, I was dirty more than I was clean. I’d roll down mountains and yards or roll my pant legs up to wade in the creek, stepping on rocks or catching crawdads. Many evenings were spent with my Grandfather, milking cows, feeding pigs or collecting eggs. Times were much simpler back then.

My cousins always came to visit on Sundays, making it the best day of the week! Granny would fix a huge dinner of soup beans, fried potatoes, corn and whatever else she could mix up, always served with a big cast iron skillet full of cornbread. If you’ve never had cornbread or cornbread out of cast iron, you truly don’t know what you are missing. Granny’s was always the best, although she was known for burning it a tad bit. Extra brown, she would say!

One particular Sunday, after dinner, my cousins and I decided we were going to head to the corncrib to play school. The corncrib had stacks of dried corn on the cob that was used to feed the chicken and pigs pushed to the back. In the front, we had moved an old filing cabinet and that is where we kept our “school” papers and pencils. We loved to play teacher and students, we would make up fake tests and grade each other.

I had decided to take a piece of cornbread with me that day in my pocket, it was hard work playing and I might want a snack for later. 🙂 We were in the corncrib for about 30 minutes when we heard a commotion outside. One of the cows had gotten loose and was trying to get in the corncrib with us!

We panicked and went into survivor mode. Even though the crib had several steps leading up to the door and was over 2 feet off the ground, we were convinced the cow was going to attack us. Finding some old rope, we quickly tied it to the inside of the old wooden door and held on for dear life. The cow’s wet nose was pressing through the cracks and we screamed for help.

It was at that point, my cousin remembered I had the cornbread in my pocket. She yelled at me to throw it to the cow so it would get away from the door. I paused for a moment, this wasn’t just your average piece of bread, then decided to sacrifice my treat so we could escape. I found a small crack on the side of the door and tossed the bread as far as I could. The cow turned and found the bread. We were relieved.

We flung open the door, grabbed our school papers and ran to Granny’s house, looking back for the crazy cow. Needless to say, I never left Sunday dinner without a piece of cornbread in my pocket, never knowing if it was going to be eaten by me or a cow.