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Proof That I Have More Guts Than You

This past Friday, I willingly subjected myself to my obligatory “You just turned 50!” booby prize procedure and had my very first colonoscopy. Yes I know, am I really 50 already ? I made sure I dyed my daggone roots before I went so they would feel it necessary to card me and make sure I was old enough. Best news is, with this done, I have nothing more to dread for the upcoming year. And I was compelled to tell all because it seems I have more guts than most.

My body based homework from my annual exam included a full panel of bloodwork, my yearly mammogram (getting my boobies squashed), and that horror procedure reserved for the newest eligible members for the American Association of Retired Citizens, the colonoscopy.

This procedure is the number one thing everyone dreads. Foremost, it means you have to fast for 36 hours. You have to pop laxatives like they’re candy and then drink almost a gallon of fluid laced with thankfully tasteless stool softeners. It’s the prep that’s the hell. Concerned that I hadn’t yet cleared myself out 5 hours beforehand, I was forced to drink one last liquid bomb at 5 am. And in telling this to my doctor before I was knocked out for the procedure, I said that I suspected something was going on in there. My colon is like the lazy river at the theme park. I often suspect my body of trying to make butt diamonds.

After a marvelous and speedy sleep and wake up administered by the most kick butt anesthesiologist ever, I was informed that, yes, there’s a reason for my seemingly slower than molasses in the wintertime bowels : I have more guts than normal people. Literally, my innards are lengthier than other people’s which I later found out is called a redundant colon. Just in case, here’s some more exit ramp. Annoying but true.

Then I thought, if you thought me a little more brazen and risk-taking than other people,  I now have actual proof you are right!  I do have more guts than other people. Hahahahahaha ! Proof That I Have More Guts than You on Shalavee.com

After the procedure, as I had announced on social media on my boring long fasting day, I was ready to go eat my predestined cheese steak sub. After some thoughtful discussion, my husband and I decided to take our business to a well established Easton, Maryland eatery in the strip mall that houses the JC Penney and the Kohl’s stores, called Rusticana Pizza. Exactly what I had wanted. The cheese steak submarine was made with care, the fries were soft on the inside and crunchy on the outside as they always are, and I washed it down with a coke over crushed ice. That hit the spot. Mark’s Stromboli was great too. I kept being reminded of the one delicious bite I took by my burps throughout the day. Our waitress has worked there a long time and her dearness just added to my gratitude.

And what I learned too was how I can see fasting as a noble religious practice. It will show you what you are and aren’t made of. I am not the sum of the contents of my belly or my fat cells. I can withstand discomfort and still live. I was glad that it all went well and that the found polyp was benign. Does however guarantee that I’ll be another total colon cleanse years from now. Yeah because who doesn’t need a complete colon reset every once in a while?

And If you enjoyed what you read, subscribe, via the subscription box in the sidebar, to my thrice weekly posts via your emailbox. And visit me on Instagram to see my daily pictures, friend me or like my page on Facebook. Or come find me on Twitter orPinterest too. I am always practicing Intentional Intouchness so chat at me please. I live for conversations.

And, as always, Thanks to you for your visit.

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Anchors Away Service Auction

This past weekend, my husband and I had the pleasure of creating the “special” for the special event service auction fundraiser at the Unitarian Universalist Fellowship at Easton to which we belong. This may have been the fifth special event I’ve decorated here plus various potlucks through the years. DSC09821

Anchors away auction on Shalavee.com

wheel scape front of room

A service auction is where community members donate goods or services and these are then auctioned off with the profits going to the church. I donated Help For the Hapless Hostess. Mark donated a round of golf. Many throw dinner parties, offer bed and breakfast packages at their waterfront homes, and there’s a crabbing trip and a plane ride over the region. It’s a wonderful way to get to know other community members and have fun doing so.Anchor on curtain on Shalavee.com

close up tablescape

This years theme was “Anchors Away” and I was told that the anchor was what needed emphasizing so that’s just what I did. I made a pattern out of wrapping paper and then cut it out of velvet. Then I ironed it onto my curtain with fuseable webbing. Perhaps I’ll post those pictures at another point.straight through angle during auction

side window curtains and lanterns

The curtains are a new item being offered by Mark’s company, On Your Mark Lighting Design and Equipment, so we thought this would be a great opportunity to get pictures of them in use. We sent them twelve feet high and then hung the nautical feeling lanterns with jute rope.

tablescape with yellow lantern

Mark used his water affect lights and LED uplights all in blue to give a water feeling. And I collected up as many nautical themed objects as I could for the tablescape in the main table. Food and wine was all donated as were our services and efforts so that all the profits could go to the church.

hallway flags and Colleen

We have a very kind and welcoming and generous community. And we are always glad and proud to contribute our talents to the cause. Plus we get to make the event truly Special. And Fiona said the cookies at this party were fantastic!Me and Fiona on Shalavee.com

If you enjoyed what you read, subscribe, via the subscription box in the sidebar, to my thrice weekly posts via your emailbox. And visit me on Instagram to see my daily pictures, friend me or like my page on Facebook. Or come find me on Twitter or Pinterest too. I am always practicing Intentional Intouchness so chat at me please. I live for conversations.

And, as always, Thanks to you for your visit.

Wrapping Up My Blogging Workshop

My blogging workshop finally happened last weekend in musty little building back in the woods on the waterfront property in Easton, Maryland known as the Evergreen Cove. I arrived before the 9:30 start time and early enough to bake up a tray full of Pillsbury cinnamon rolls to smell up the place and then went to greet people at the door.Spring at Evergreen Cove in Easton, Maryland on Shalavee.com

Mr Gerald Sweeney, aka Mr. Gerry the current President of the Eastern Shore Writers Association, introduced me to my class of 15 with such fanfare and accolades, he made me laugh at how awesome I sounded. I told the attendees if they didn’t enjoy the workshop, it was all his fault for talking me into it.My blogging workshop on Shalavee.com

The majority of the attendees of my workshop entitled The Why is the How: Intentional Blogging 101, were seeking a basic understanding of blogging. The hows, always the hows. And what I made sure to insist in the beginning and throughout was that those are secondary. It’s your whys, or maybe your why nots, that will lead you or thwart you from your blog beginning. We agree to our bossy fears blaming our hows. I can’t because “I don’t know how” is subterfuge.water view from the Evergreen Cove on Shalavee.com

I gave everyone the best of my knowledge, the personal stories of the gifts of my unexpected blogger friendships, and my near fatal technological errors. And I did this all with the humor and compassion that I am made of. The most important fact to impart to these lovely people was that they can do it for themselves and I will be here to support them. Because I didn’t have a mentor when I needed one and everyone deserves a mentor.The stone path at the Evergreen Cove in Easton, Maryland on Shalavee.com

I am a huge fan of ‘Drops in the bucket’, ‘One foot in front of the other’, and 15 minute increments. Or “Just start” as Mr. George interpreted afterwards. He was my star pupil. This very intelligent intuitive gentleman and scholar, and a spry 80-year-old, picked up everything I was putting down. And graciously bestowed compliments on me afterwards. I will forever be devoted to him. His emails these lovely comments to me.

Shalagh,

As I fully expected you made a fine presentation. It was humorous, informative, practical, energetic and you made my most ominous enemy look less fearsome. I’m ready to face my dragon. I think I’ll take him on this week.”

And then …

I thought your comment about being clear about ‘why’ I might want to do this was profound. That is the heart of so many dreams that get stalled – we’re not sure of just what we want from the dream.

Best,

George”

I plan to do future meet-ups for bloggers where they can ask follow-up questions of me and create further support and community with each other. Mr George said now they know enough to come up with intelligent questions to ask next time we meet. I followed up the class by sending out and sharing more resources and email addresses. I’ve done all that I could.Me and Mr Gerry after my blogging workshop on Shalavee.com

I so hope that each of these lovely people find their personal whys and a place to stand permitting them to jump into this blog journey that I have so unexpectedly enjoyed. There are moments when you do wonder what you were thinking when you started, much like parenthood. And then other times you wonder how you could have lived with out the title of blogger and the gifts and privileges that go with it. Life sometimes takes a while to show you the truth in your actions and yet you must have faith that there’s a story brewing worth telling at some point.

And If you enjoyed what you read, subscribe, via the subscription box in the sidebar, to my thrice weekly posts via your emailbox. And visit me on Instagram to see my daily pictures, friend me or like my page on Facebook. Or come find me on Twitter orPinterest too. I am always practicing Intentional Intouchness so chat at me please. I live for conversations.

And, as always, Thanks to you for your visit.

A Moroccan Christmas Tree

This past weekend was another one crammed with creativity and good company.

A birthday party and a dear friend and her family over for dinner was then followed by the decorating of a tree to benefit the Talbot County, Maryland’s Hospice Organization. I was asked to do this tree last minute by my friend Pama, the owner of Moonvine, a little gift and lovelies shop right across Harrison Street from Gold ballroom in the Tidewater Inn in Easton, Maryland where the trees are displayed.

Hospice Festival of Trees in Easton, MD on Shalavee.com

The ornaments are donated by the decorators and then the trees are pre-sold to local businesses and patrons. I knew that I had a few items in the attic that would create a Moroccan themed tree. Ornaments left over from my first “real” tree that I had ordered while attending the Atlanta Gift show 15 years ago back when I worked for Pama. A befitting recycling. Thankfully, the recipient of my tree is Midge, the creator of the Festival of Trees event some 20 years ago. She loved the colors and was really looking forward to having my masterpiece in her hallway. Now I really had to care what it looked like.

let the tree decorating begin on Shalavee.com

close up of the moroccan themed Christmas tree on Shalavee.com

I was one of the first to arrive and got right to shoving the netting in and making the ribbon weave through the tree. And when Pama entered the Gold ballroom, it was a joy to hear her exclaim happy greetings to all these women who she has worked with year after year. All day I heard her at various trees coaching the teams on how to do bows or professional festooning. It was a joy to be in the room with all these happy to be creative do-gooders and my gal Pama, aka Coach.

The festival of trees at the Tidewater Inn in Easton, MD on Shalavee.com

The festival of trees at the Tidewater Inn in Easton, MD on Shalavee.com

The Inn provided coffee and fruit infused water for us to sip as we stepped back to examine the trees and find the holes that needed filling. The room was full of chatter and focus and a breeze from the tented patio. Decorating my Moroccan Christmas tree must have taken me the better part of four hours to fill that tree. I was fried and happy enough at the end of the day. We will be returning next Monday for Eamon’s piano recital here in this very room. And Mark helps with the Festival of Trees fashion show too.

A Moraccan themed Christmas on Shalavee.com

One tree down, two more to go. Hope you are inspired and let me know if I can help you with your decorating projects in any way.

 

Moonvine in Easton, MD : A Unique Little Shop

If it’s Black Friday, shopping locally is on my mind. Happily, my gal Pama’s shop Moonvine will be open for her second Christmas season on Harrison Street in Easton, Maryland across from the Tidewater Inn. And like last year, I plan to do some of my Christmas shopping here.

Moonvine creams at Moonvine on Shalavee.com

Yarn ball ornaments at Moonvine on Shalavee.com

While visiting and gathering decorations for the Moroccan themed Christmas tree for Talbot Hospice last week, I took a massive amount of pictures so I could show you the magnitude of beautiful that is Moonvine. You should all be so lucky to have this sort of shop in your town. And if you live here, stop by and tell her I sent you.

Yet another mermaid at Moonvine on Shalavee.com

Pama’s first love is Mermaids and they are everywhere.

More mermaids at Moonvine on Shalavee.com

Yarn mermaids at Moonvine on Shalavee.com

She loves fairies too and you’ll find them tucked in every niche and adorning some lovely cards too.

Fairies are everywhere at Moonvine on Shalavee.com

Greeted by a fairy at Moonvine on Shalavee.com

Fairy cards at Moonvine on Shalavee.com

Her mother Karen is a very talented artist and crafter and her work is everywhere you look.

Vintage and mosaic work at Moonvine on Shalavee.com

The mosaic pieces done with vintage bits are fascinating and would be stars in a minimalistic house.

Mosaiced frame with vintage bits at Moonvine on Shalavee.com

And the antiques strewn about the shop are also wonderful and many would make a styled shelf memorable.

Colored glassware at Moonvine on Shalavee.com

Bust at Moonvine on Shalavee.com

Pama is an amazing floral designer and there are beautiful florals everywhere.

Fabulous faux cotton at Moonvine on Shalavee.com

Vintage vignette at Moonvine on Shalavee.com

Gorgeous garland and homemade soaps at Moonvine on Shalavee.com

She also loves quality homemade soaps and there are more than a few lovely ones to choose from.

Luxurious soaps at Moonvine on Shalavee.com

I absolutely flipped over the library collection candles with literary names like Jane Austin and Mark Twain packaged in copper tins, they are amazing smelling too. I detest Yankee candles and while I love love love Votivo, these are really nice.

The Library candle collection at Moonvine on Shalavee.com

The library collection candles at Moonvine on Shalavee.com

Christmas ornaments are also a one gift hit and she’s got some lovely ones. Charming Little sea creatures and mermaids dangle everywhere.

Nodding headed turtle ornament at Moonvine on Shalavee.com

Closeup look at the teacher fish ornament at Moonvine on Shalavee.com

Hairdresser fish ornaments at Moonvine on Shalavee.com

Realistic little crabs at Moonvine on Shalavee.com

You can even take a little Eastern Shore of Maryland with you with these amazingly real crabs and cute handmade oyster shell ornaments.

Oyster shell Eastom, MD ornaments at Moonvine on Shalavee.com

Plus … there’s the jewelry. Last year there was some fun pieces and this year, there’s plenty more. An entire case of vintage jewelry takes up one corner of the shop. And Fiona got to play with some dress up quality necklaces like she likes to do while I ran around and took my pictures.

Jewelry box at Moonvine on Shalavee.com

The jewelry case at Moonvine on Shalavee.com

Honestly, I was just in there and I could spend another uninterrupted hour fondling and smelling everything in the shop. A day trip here to Easton for a wander around and a nice lunch sounds like great fun before or after Christmas. Charm oozes from the cracks in the brick sidewalks here in Easton and Pama’s store is a jewel in its crown.

My post on Moonvine from July 2013 is here.

Moonvine is located at 21 A North Harrison Street in Easton, Maryland.

Visit their Facebook page here. And don’t hesitate to give her a call at 410-770-4451 for information or custom wreath requests.

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