Image by farakos on iStock


red headred head assets.rebelmouse.io

Happy Valentine’s Day. And before you say anything, yes, I know you don’t celebrate holidays, so just humor me.


Black's HeadBlack assets.rebelmouse.io

But, I do “celebrate” February being American Heart Month since heart disease is the leading cause of death – for both men and women.


red headred head assets.rebelmouse.io

Gee, that’s one way to turn a “fun” holiday into a real downer. Today’s supposed to be about letting people you love and care about know that you’re thinking of them. Think Hallmark cards, squishy teddy bears, chocolate hearts.


Black's HeadBlack assets.rebelmouse.io

Do I have to? I rather think about eating well and exercising. I would think you would want to make sure you are around for the people you care about.

red headred head assets.rebelmouse.io


I do, and the irony is that I know what to do. I just can’t find the motivation to keep it going for more than a few days. But when it comes to eating well and exercising, nothing seems to deter you.

Black's HeadBlack assets.rebelmouse.io


Because every morning, I walk into a large closet filled with size 2 clothing.

red headred head assets.rebelmouse.io


That’s funny.

Black's HeadBlack assets.rebelmouse.io


It is the truth. I have always been a clothes horse. Now, decades later, I have a significant investment hanging in my closet. And, since almost everything is timeless and classic, I would be extremely annoyed if it no longer fit.

red headred head assets.rebelmouse.io


Well, even if that’s something us “mere mortals” can’t relate to, at least it keeps you motivated. I just don’t have anything like that in my life.

Black's HeadBlack assets.rebelmouse.io


Really? I can name two things.

red headred head assets.rebelmouse.io


Well, I’m not sure Natasha and Sawyer would want to be referred to as “things”, but I see your point. I think I did a better job staying fit when they were younger and truly needed me every day. Plus, back when I was cooking for them, I was more focused on healthy eating.

Black's HeadBlack assets.rebelmouse.io


Those are excuses. Are you saying that now that they no longer need you as cook and chauffeur, they also do not need your life experience and unconditional love? Especially as they face the challenges of adulthood.

red headred head assets.rebelmouse.io


Ok, now I don’t know whether to feel guilty or sad because I’m not taking good enough care of myself to always be there for them. At least, if I’m lucky, for the next 30 or 40 years.

Black's HeadBlack assets.rebelmouse.io


How about stop being so dramatic and just start taking better care of yourself? Do you remember the airplane and oxygen mask analogy?


red headred head assets.rebelmouse.io

Absolutely. It was one of your more clever trick questions. You asked me if I was on a plane with the girls and we lost altitude, causing the oxygen masks to drop, would I first put the mask on myself or the girls. I answered, “The girls, of course.” You then pointed out that if I didn’t take care of myself first, I wouldn’t be in a position to help them.


Black's HeadBlack assets.rebelmouse.io

And everyone else that might either need you or want to have you around for a long time. But, it is your call … you can make smart decisions now or regret it later.


red headred head assets.rebelmouse.io

Well, that’s brutally honest. But it has motivated me to go for a walk and think about how I’m going to not only begin, but maintain, a “new and improved” lifestyle. I guess, in many ways, I’m now saying Happy Valentine’s Day to myself, not you.


Black's HeadBlack assets.rebelmouse.io

Mission accomplished.
Design by Sawyer Pennington, Underlying photo by Jon Tyson on Unsplash


red headred head assets.rebelmouse.io

So, I had to smile when Sawyer came to visit us at Mom’s estate sale. And even though I had seen her only a few hours before, I gave her a hug.


Black's HeadBlack assets.rebelmouse.io

Yes, you make it rather obvious that you are warm and fuzzy. And, a hugger.


red headred head assets.rebelmouse.io

But what made me laugh was when she greeted you by acknowledging that you weren’t a hugger. Now there’s an understatement.


Black's HeadBlack assets.rebelmouse.io

No, it is merely a fact.


red headred head assets.rebelmouse.io

I never realized, though, just how much both Natasha and Sawyer are like you. Although they begrudgingly let me hug them, they’d both be just as happy with a handshake. If that.


Black assets.rebelmouse.io

Maybe a fist bump?
Keep Reading ...Show less
Credit: Photo by Maha1450 on iStock


Red assets.rebelmouse.io


I know you celebrate Labor Day by just, well, laboring away on Red & Black. But that’s how you celebrate most holidays. For me, I always enjoy celebrating the last three-day weekend of the summer, although the challenge will be deciding what to do this Labor Day. Escape to a movie (ok, my passion’s the popcorn), go to Dunkin’ for a leisurely coffee (it always brings back memories of growing up in New York), read, or climb into bed and watch old episodes of Downton Abbey. Or, maybe “all of the above”!

But before you say anything, yes, I’m well aware that today’s more than a day off and a potential “cut-off” for wearing white (😊). It’s about honoring American workers and all the many contributions they’ve made and continue to make.


Black assets.rebelmouse.io


I know you love history, but do you know the history of Labor Day includes violence and a deadly railroad strike? And, was a way for politicians to “prove” they cared about workers? It is too bad people do not typically walk around thanking others for the work they do (imagine the impact if we did), but maybe you will get inspired by these Labor Day quotes.

And, in terms of me “laboring” today. Of course, I am. I look forward to the quiet time of weekends, especially long ones, to work on strategic projects needing large blocks of uninterrupted time or one of my passion projects. To you, it might appear as if I am “working”, but I am doing what makes me happy. Although tomorrow morning, you may not be happy when you find all my emails that will be waiting in your inbox.


red headred head assets.rebelmouse.io

You know how I like to blah-blah-blah, barely letting anyone get a word in edgewise?


Black's HeadBlack assets.rebelmouse.io

Is this a rhetorical question? Or, a trick question?


red headred head assets.rebelmouse.io

Neither, I leave those to you. And, you know how things happen to us that seem accidental but probably aren’t coincidences?


Black's HeadBlack assets.rebelmouse.io

Is there a point to these questions? If so, can you please get to it?


red headred head assets.rebelmouse.io

As you often tell me, “Patience, grasshopper.” Although I know that’s not your strong suit. Especially not in conversations. Anyway, the other day you sent me a video about stutterers. Well, that same day, I happened to speak to someone who stuttered, and it was just what I needed.


Black assets.rebelmouse.io

The video? Or, the conversation?
Keep Reading ...Show less