Posts Tagged ‘Lessons Learned’


Lessons Learned from a Pandemic…

I’m sure all of you could write this little post better than I, but here are my observations so far:

  1. I have really bad breath.
  2. Bad breath didn’t use to bother me that much.
  3. Thanks to wearing masks, I now understand why people don’t want to be close to me.
  4. Based on what I’m smelling, I need to brush my teeth…..all waking hours of the day.
  5. I have a really small face.
  6. Most masks are made for giants.
  7. My reading glasses are fighting a war for dominance with my masks because of # 5.
  8. The jury’s out on who will win # 7.
  9. All of the above fogs up my glasses.
  10. Pinching the nose piece on my mask does little to avoid # 9.
  11. I need a new closet in my new home for hand sanitizer, Lysol wipes, bleach-based cleaner, masks, and toothpaste.
  12. Make that 2 closets.
  13. Maybe one will do since the store is out of most of the items in # 11.
  14. I need another refrigerator for Pepsi Zero Sugar, distilled water, Skinny Cow Pretzel bars, Diet Coke, Diet Ginger Ale, and Snapple. In other words, if it’s an unhealthy drink, I need an 18-month supply of it.
  15. I won’t need the extra fridge because the store is also chronically out of the above items, as well.
  16. It may be time to stop the auto-refill orders on my sleep aids, heart pills, and arthritis pain control supplements. I have enough to last me until the apocalypse or another pandemic, whichever comes first.
  17. God and I may have to have a discussion about allowing a pandemic the same year as a U.S. election. Oh…wait. Maybe that’s His idea of an apocalypse.
  18. I spend more money at the grocery store when I know I have to stay in my home all the time.
  19. I spend more money when I order my groceries online.
  20. The UPS lady is now delivering dog biscuits to my doorstep.
  21. The dog biscuit recipient can sniff a hidden dog biscuit a mile away and will move large parcels with her nose with little regard for the contents of the parcel.
  22. After getting her dog biscuit, the recipient winds up in her crate because she broke the box contents.
  23. The recipient can now run 2.5 miles in 13 minutes flat in cold weather.
  24. The recipient runs the same 2.5 miles in 22 minutes in hot weather.
  25. The recipient’s owner walks the same 2.5 miles in 40 minutes, regardless of the weather.
  26. Clearly, we need to get the owner some dog biscuits, preferably Pepsi Zero sugar-flavored.
  27. I have now turned naps into an art form.
  28. I have just about completed all the sudoku and fill-it-in books at Dollar General.
  29. I cannot be trusted with phone versions of the games in # 28 because that’s all I want to do.
  30. That’s all I want to do because I have seen everything on HBO at least 10 times now.
  31. I’m beginning to think that perhaps I have been hypnotized and brainwashed by Keith Ranieri after watching The Vow and Seduced.
  32. Where is Survivor???? How more socially-distanced can you be in Fiji???
  33. I now want a facial mask for every occasion.
  34. I don’t know why I want # 33 since I go absolutely nowhere.
  35. I’m suddenly in hot demand for consultations and mentoring relationships. My diagnosis for all of them? Cabin fever.
  36. Cabin fever is very aptly named if you live in a cabin.
  37. A pandemic is expensive–We have upped our data plan; I have subscribed to who knows how many streaming plans; and a Zoom subscription is probably in my future if I can’t connect with some people soon.
  38. Spotify is next on the subscription list.
  39. I have completed 23 reading plans on the YouVersion app, including the “Bible in 90 Days” plan.
  40. I AM going to earn that Advent Reading Plan completion badge to make # 39 tally to 24 by the end of the year.
  41. I don’t think God is impressed by an Advent Reading Plan completion badge.
  42. I STILL haven’t finished editing my book.
  43. I blame the lack of Pepsi Zero Sugar in stores for the failure in # 42.
  44. Therefore, Walmart is keeping me from finishing the book.


60 Things to Remember at Age 60…

As you all know, at significant junction points in my life, I often write a Lessons Learned post about what I have learned from the circuitous path of my life. But today, I choose to share with you the wisdom that others have taught me–the things that have become huge paradigm shifts and have allowed me to slowly transform into who God meant me to be. Some are straight from God; some are from authors and famous folks, and some are from the people I encounter as I do life. I would love to tell you that I live out all of these flawlessly, but no, I’m still MaryAnn In Progress. I hope these become paradigm shifts for you, too:

  1. God wants to have a conversation with you–yes, you.
  2. God speaks all the time; few of us listen for his voice.
  3. God speaks quietly and slowly.
  4. The resurrection is true. Chuck Colson once wrote that within a matter of a few months, ten Watergate conspirators all confessed the truth about the “cover-up”; while 12 disciples often went to torturous deaths stating that Jesus was alive 3 days after his execution.
  5. There is a true me and a false me.
  6. False me cares what others think of me and is very, very needy. False me talks too much, is an extrovert, thinks she’s wiser than everyone else; is proud, self-hyper-critical, stubborn, and nervous. False me blames everyone else for her troubles. False me judges people unfairly. False me worries about the scale number and doctor visits. I’m rather revolted by her.
  7. True me is an introvert, knows that God is in control and has a reason for the state of my life currently and isn’t afraid to die. True me is a good writer, an okay wife, mom, and grandmother and keeps her house somewhat clean. True me can out research anyone on the planet. True me can create a great resume; find acronyms for anything; write great t-shirt slogans, decorate for Christmas like a magazine picture, and cope with a bunch of crazy health conditions quite well. True me is humble and hates how false me gets judgmental and thus, hates judgment unless administered in a court of law, at the ballot box, or parent-to-child. True me lives out YOLO. I like her. She just needs to show up more often.
  8. God can take me out whenever He wants.
  9. Because of #8, make peace with death. It’s not anything to be afraid of. It’s just the next transition. And what a great transition it will be!
  10. Because of #8, create a file on your computer that tells your loved ones what you’d prefer for the final-send-off. Write and sign your will. Create a living will. This is a gift to your family.
  11. Listen to your elders. Had I done this at a younger age, I doubt I would have floundered as much as I did in my early life.
  12. Listen to the next generation. They are endlessly fascinating; they have a new take on life and can talk you out of any depression.
  13. Forgiving others doesn’t mean you excuse their actions; it means you’re freeing yourself up to work on the things your true me was meant to do.
  14. Anger is just a mask for hurt and pain.
  15. The worst philosophy on Earth is to have a stiff, upper lip or pulling yourself up by your bootstraps. Crying is just letting the hurt, pain, anger, and disappointment loose from your soul and acknowledging it. Once the crying is finished, it loses its power to control you.
  16. There’s a time and place to cry. I will grant you that crying in certain situations may not be best, but as soon as you feel that emotion and can let go, it’s wise to let it happen.
  17. Celebrate everything. You may not be around tomorrow to enjoy another great moment.
  18. Pick your favorite holiday and celebrate it to the hilt. I think you all know which one is mine. Of course, stay within your budget, but do it. You’re creating memories for those closest to you.
  19. Tell people that you love them…now. Do it a lot.
  20. Be your partner’s number 1 fan.
  21. Create a bucket list. When the finances permit, start checking off those items.
  22. Make your partner your best friend. Tell them the scary stuff. Apologize when your false me gets the better of you. Be selfless around them as often as possible.
  23. Make “Date Night” and “Family Night” a hallowed tradition. Put it on the calendar. Make it sacred.
  24. Tell your partner when all the “critical stuff” is happening for the next week in your family’s life. Throw it on an index card in color-coded ink or send an email/text message about it. I chose “red” for “Be there or you’re divorced” items, “yellow” for “It’d be nice if you could get there for this” items, and green for “It’s happening, so we might not be available.” It bonds the family together.
  25. Admit your mistakes. Grieve them out, if need be. Ask God for transformation in these areas.
  26. Do what God calls your attention to first. (It’s called your conscience/intuition, etc.) Even if that means you’re running around your workplace/home like a crazy person. You probably needed the calorie burn, anyway.
  27. Take care of you. You can’t help others if you’re down in bed. Take your medication. Exercise as much as you can. Rest 7-8 hours a night.
  28. Brag about your partner, kids, and grandkids. Everyone needs a champion. Yes, you’ll bore and annoy the tar out of your friends, but chances are, they’re just as proud of their kids and grandkids as you are. Your true friends will get it.
  29. Embrace change as much as you can. Let God decide what is “bad news” and just adjust.
  30. Hug everyone. Yes, for people outside your family and close friends, ask permission first and don’t be creepy, but we all need care.
  31. Be thankful. Even on my worst days, there is still a silver lining. Dwell on that.
  32. If it won’t matter in 10 years, forget about it. If it will, do that first.
  33. Tell stories. Even Jesus knew that telling a great story teaches and encourages people (or at least warns them what NOT to do). If possible, make it humorous.
  34. Be present when you have the present of someone before you. They’re the agenda today.
  35. The people you ignore, seem needy, or seem insignificant often become the most important people in your life.
  36. There’s something to be learned from each person you encounter in your life.
  37. Visit friends and family. Save up the money, plan and just do it.
  38. Express yourself. Are you an artist? Then, create art. Are you a writer? Then, write. Are you an engineer? Then, create the next best thing. Are you a scientist? Do meaningful research that changes the world. Are you a doctor? Heal. Are you a lawyer? Create fairness where none exists. Are you an interior designer? Inspire people with your designs. Are you in the maintenance field? Clean what everyone else ignores. Do you sing? Then, join the choir or sing wherever anyone will listen. Are you a homemaker? Be creative in the way you maintain your home and raise your children.
  39. Creativity is everywhere. It’s in the products around you right now; it’s in nature; it’s in the people around you. Notice it. Be inspired by it. Celebrate it. Promote it.
  40. Find nature regularly. It’s a great teacher and a great healer.
  41. Find your “tribe.” There are probably several groups of people out there who “get” you just as you are. Let them heal and transform you.
  42. Give to your community, whether it’s your time, your talent, your gifts, or your presence. (I think I’ve heard that somewhere before.)
  43. There’s a gift in giving.
  44. Pray for your enemies. To do this well, I have to put myself in that person’s shoes. It changes how I view that person instantly. They have a reason for behaving the way they have.
  45. Get help when you can’t help yourself, in every realm of your life. Let “the help” be blessed by getting to help where they are experts.
  46. When you criticize another person harshly, you just criticized yourself. We over-notice, in other people, the very things we are struggling with ourselves.
  47. Your dreams are a free tool to know yourself better and to heal and to prepare. Keep a dream journal by your bed and record them.
  48. There are no perpetrators. There are only victims who have been so mistreated and neglected that they eventually become perpetrators.
  49. Substance abuse is just self-medication for past trauma. “Falling off the bandwagon” is just part of the disease.
  50. There is no problem in this world that God can’t solve.
  51. God chooses to involve us in # 50, even though He could do it alone. Why? Because it will bring you joy.
  52. You get to choose whether to involve yourself in # 51.
  53. Clinging to possessions winds up possessing me. Releasing them frees me and often blesses someone else much more than it blessed me. (I reserve the right to cling to my Christmas trees and ornaments until I can’t decorate them anymore! See # 18.)
  54. Think of yourself as a multi-career, multi-talented person.
  55. The bravest people in the world go to mental health counselors and spiritual directors.
  56. The true answer to mass shootings is changing the mindset of the shooter before they shoot.
  57. You are the difference between life and death for many, many people by what you choose to say and do.
  58. The most insignificant thing I do is the most important thing to someone else.
  59. Do the thing you fear the most if that thing will not harm another human being. Fear is the biggest culprit for the problems in this world.
  60. You are designed for a specific purpose, on purpose. Do you–the true you–and the world will be a better place.

What’s the one thing that changed how you viewed the world…for the better? Post it below.


Lessons Learned from Bar Harbor…

The hubby’s family takes a destination family reunion vacation every three to four years. We have been to Virginia Beach, VA, Hilton Head, SC, Branson, MO, Estes Park, CO, Brown County, IN, and now, Bar Harbor, Maine! (I’ve probably forgotten a few, too.)

When one tries to get 36.5 people together in one location where none of us live, it’s an interesting “expedition,” both planning-wise and execution-wise. (When one of the homes you rented actually has “servants quarters,” you realize just how large this family has gotten!) Thankfully, the family “travels well” and when we hit “road bumps,” we muddle through it all together. Here’s my take on the lessons learned from the latest vacay with pretty much the entire family:


Lessons Learned from Another Family Wedding…

wedding cakeThe eldest son married the love of his life last weekend. And of course, I can’t go without at least commenting on the lessons learned from this rustic West Texas affair…

  1. Supposedly, the “groom’s side” is easier to plan and execute. However, that is probably based on the premise that you don’t house the wedding guests in the same town as Texas Tech in May. How do you feel about red and black wedding colors, really?
  2. Apparently, the cost of renting a rehearsal luncheon space for about 3 hours requires a student loan from the government. I am in the wrong business.
  3. It only takes a weekend at the Reserve, a chainsaw, grubby clothing, an Amish Hardware Store in Ohio, Oriental Trading, and 7 more mason jars to create rehearsal luncheon centerpieces. Oh, and 2 willing-to-be-slaves sister-in-laws and an equally willing niece.
  4. They don’t sell Mason jars in packs of 7 or singly…only in dozens. Grr…
  5. Bring insect repellent, ear protection, work gloves and safety glasses to get the wedding guest book. Let’s just say the hubby and I used muscles we’ve never used before.
  6. Even though the attire is casual for the rehearsal and ensuing luncheon, please advise the groom that gym shorts are not part of “casual” even in Texas.
  7. Be on the lookout for wild prairie dogs and pesky tumbleweeds on your way to the venue.
  8. A smart mother of the groom would confirm the time of delivery for the rehearsal luncheon.
  9. I never said I was smart. Okay…so I haven’t said it in the last 5 minutes.
  10. Your decorating “slaves” are far more creative than your “vision.” Pay them extra next time.
  11. Catering dollars in the country go farther than in the big city.  Closer to the food source?
  12. The “slaves” will gladly pack up your decor leftovers for a slightly higher fee. They take hugs as a form of payment. There is a God in Heaven.
  13. Only trust your fancy wedding purse with your brother. It matches his belt buckle.
  14. The brother, because he knows you, will inquire if he should bring a dolly for your purse.
  15. Allow extra room in the wedding budget for physical therapy for your brother post-wedding.
  16. The youngest son will actually shave and get a haircut if it’s for a wedding.
  17. I plan to have family weddings every six months from now until he’s 30. I have plenty of adopteds “in the pipeline.” See # 16.
  18. Even if you have 3 hours to get dressed for the wedding, you won’t get time for a nap.
  19. They need to make SUVs in wedding dress size.
  20. Your best opportunity to get to know the mother of the bride will be in the car on the way to the wedding, provided you don’t hit any prairie dogs on the way.
  21. Just because the bride’s dressing room says that it has air conditioning does not mean it will work while housing 7 bridesmaids, 2 flower girls, 2 mothers, 2 photographers, 1 videographer, 1 bride and a partridge in a pear tree.
  22. You REALLY get to know each other when it’s 81 degrees in the bride’s dressing room.
  23. Renting a new car doesn’t mean it’s reliable wedding transportation. Ask the groom.
  24. Even if the rental car comes with a jack, that doesn’t mean the jack works.
  25. Superman status goes to the father of the groom for getting the car back on the jack, changing the tire, getting tire replaced, and doing a wardrobe change in the tire store restroom and still managing to look dashing.
  26. Relatives from far-off Midwestern states who went to great lengths to not miss another family wedding will miss it because THEIR rental car tire is being replaced.
  27. We need better roads in West Texas. Or maybe better rental cars. Or tires.
  28. Just because there is a PA system at the venue, does not mean it works well with West Texas wind. Even the Chicago wedding guests were impressed with the “windage.”
  29. Even if the venue is in the middle of nowhere, two duallys will go right by the “altar” while the vows are being said. I’m pretty sure their mufflers need replacing.
  30. It’s easier to say your wedding vows if your veil is not being blown into your mouth.
  31. Beware of the flower girls. They may look harmless, but they can pelt you with rose petals.
  32. Bring sunglasses to all outdoor sunset weddings in West Texas.
  33. Leave your wedding gift in the back of the red pickup. No. Not kidding.
  34. Sign the guest log. Seriously. It’s a log….slice. See # 5: 
  35. Enjoy the reception in the barn. Yes, the barn.
  36. Barns can be really pretty in Texas.
  37. The best dancer at the wedding will be your two-year-old great nephew. He’s my favorite dance partner. Shhh. Don’t tell the hubby.
  38. The next best dancer at the wedding will be your twenty-two year old son. Unfortunately, without the facial hair and longer hairstyle, everyone will mistake him for the groom.
  39. The groom hates dancing in front of people, but he tells great jokes while doing so.
  40. The mother of the bride will tear up when she hears she is doing her mother-daughter dance to the tune, “You Are the Wind Beneath My Wings.” Okay…so everyone teared up.
  41. Your family pics will be taken in front of a train freight car. Yes, a train freight car.
  42. You will be forever proud with your eldest son who breaks from his normal, practical tradition and sends two beautiful cards to the bride and her mother before the ceremony.
  43. You will be even more impressed that you didn’t have to tell him to do that.
  44. You will marvel at your daughter and son-in-law for balancing bridesmaid and groomsman duties with nursing a baby, changing diapers, soothing said baby and helping the mother and father of the groom. Do they take hugs as a form of payment???
  45. You will be astounded by the maturity of your youngest who graciously and quietly did all that was asked of him and more!
  46. You will be even more impressed that you didn’t have to tell him to do that.
  47. This wedding must have been a big deal, because the week after Blue Bell did this: 
  48. The sober end of the crowd will dance more than the drinking end. Surreal, but true.
  49. Praise God for choosing to let you be a mom when you didn’t think that was possible.
  50. Forget May 14th…this was MY Mother’s Day this year.


Lessons Learned from 9 Weeks at a Nonprofit Counseling Center…

phone booth

When I’m not writing, reading, or taking care of my family and home, then I’m probably volunteering.  Lately I volunteer at Compassion Counseling Center, Inc. Compassion has a unique mission: to help the hurting and to support the next generation of counselors.

Compassion is into its 10th week of counseling now. And as the Board secretary for Compassion, I just reported on “the status” of this “experiment” at our first quarterly Board meeting for 2015. We are off to a good start despite ice storms, rolling Spring Breaks and people not even knowing we exist.

Compassion, as of right now, has completed 72 hours of counseling and 35 people have been seen by Compassion counselors. Because we are a 501(c)(3) nonprofit, we are able to offer counseling at a very reduced rate. Our average session fee is currently $ 13.83.

Fifty percent of our clients pay less than that, based on a very generous sliding fee scale. Some pay nothing at all. We have 14 hours of counseling sessions scheduled for the rest of this week. That is well above our average (over the past 2 months) of 7.22 counseling hours per week.


Lessons Learned from a Face Plant…


I know many of you are expecting a post about your favorite posts of 2014, but something unusual happened on Wednesday night that I just can’t resist discussing.

First, let me say that we had a wonderful turnout for the Ribbon-Cutting ceremony for Compassion Counseling Center and we couldn’t be more pleased. Thanks to all who helped us launch this new endeavor. Now all we need are lots and lots of counseling appointments for our counselors-in-training so they can graduate on-time.

Unfortunately, I chose to trip over a cement curb in the parking lot and did a huge face plant in the parking lot afterwards and I now know, firsthand, what getting a black eye feels like. Only I could end a fabulous day this way.

Have no fear–I am fine. But, while I was in the ER awaiting the results of my first CAT scan, I had a lot of “free time” on my hands to come up with a few lessons learned. Gosh, I hope I learned some lessons from this stupidity.

1. As a member of the Board of Trustees for the church, I think I’m going to bring up better lighting in our parking lot at the next meeting and….painting the cement parking curbs hazard yellow.

2. Remind me to heed the thought in my head to wear jeans and tennies when cleaning up after a public event. (I was in high heal boots and I have never walked all that elegantly in heels.)

3. I now have something in common with Sylvester Stallone. (I look like the female version of Rocky after a fight.) Could I please get a paycheck like Sylvester Stallone?

4. I chose to protect the crock pot in my arms rather than my face, because it belonged to the Executive Director for Compassion. Remind me that replacing crock pots are cheaper than replacing my face.

5. Thanks to the CAT scan, I now know what it’s like to be inside a dryer. I totally get why they have pretty blossoming tree branches on the ceiling tile.

6. Remind me to bring Tums to my next CAT scan.

7. I know what black top taste likes now. I’m not impressed.

8. Scrapes under your nose hurt more than a gigantic knot on my forehead. Who knew?!?

9. Neosporin helps quell a stinging upper lip. Do they sell Neosporin in “vat-size”?

10. Band-aids should be curved. Can I get a paycheck from Johnson & Johnson for that idea????

11.  Before you get strapped to the oxygen level and blood pressure monitors, grab your cell phone and Kindle so you aren’t absolutely bored senseless while waiting forever for your CAT scan results.

12. Reading glasses should be curved.

13. My bright red reading glasses now match my new version of “eye shadow.” You know me–I like to “match.”

14. Is this God’s way of “knocking some sense into my head”? If so, He and I need to talk.

15. I’ve been praying for humility as I work on creating Compassion. Remind me to be more specific about the way I’d like God to do that next time.

16. I’ve heard, “Pride goeth before the fall.” I just didn’t know God meant that literally.

17. My “goose egg” matched my bright blue dress. See # 13.

18. My swollen chin is not amused by the expression, “taking it on the chin.”

19. I wonder if there’s a vendor for the blossoming tree ceiling tiles. Can you Google that?

20. I’m now really fond of “Jackie O” sunglasses. The bigger and the darker, the better.

21. I definitely have my master’s in Psychology. While in the ER, I was praying they wouldn’t report my injuries to the authorities since I look like Exhibit A in a domestic violence textbook.

22. It’s difficult to wear reading glasses and Jackie O sunglasses at the same time. Jackie O sunglasses should be curved.

23. I may have to reconsider the “Any day I’m not in the hospital is a good day.” mantra I’ve had for the past few years. How about “Any day I’m not in the ER it’s a good day.”????

24. I need to buy more of the tights I wore Wednesday. I bruised my left knee and yet, no run in the tights at all.

25. Do they make tights for faces?

Monday’s Post: WOW time

You Might Also Like: Lessons Learned from Starting a Nonprofit Counseling Center and Lessons Learned from Being a Part-Time Wife


Lessons Learned from Starting a Nonprofit Counseling Center…

Just because writing a blog, writing a book, teaching Bible study, organizing trips to women’s conferences, taking care of an ailing brother, taking care of his estate, serving on the Board of Trustees at my church, and recovering from 2 heart attacks apparently wasn’t enough to keep me out of trouble, I decided, in September 2013 to work on a new project. The project?


It’s good that I helped with its formation, because after this 14 month process (that often reminded me of childbirth–without the epidural), I probably need my head examined.

What is Compassion Counseling Center? A non-profit organization dedicated to helping those in our community who need counseling, but can’t afford it. But that’s not all it is.


Lessons Learned from Being a Part-Time Wife…

business traveler Have you found a new page for MIP yet? This is today’s version of “Where’s Waldo?”

For just about the entire 30 + years I have been married to the hubby, he has been on the road for business reasons. This may seem crazy to the rest of the married world, but we actually enjoy living like this. Yes, we enjoy it. Here’s why:

1. My kitchen is pretty much tidy on the weekdays because he cooks enough that I can just heat up leftovers for a week. I don’t think the man knows how to cook for less than a military regiment.

2. It’s quiet while he’s away. When he’s home, there is the NFL Channel or the Food Channel or Fixer-Upper or some other weird channel on our TVs and the man hasn’t figured out where the down arrow is for the volume control. Which brings me to # 3…

3. I get to use the remote control all by myself on the weekdays. I am convinced he thinks I don’t know how to use it properly simply because I choose to watch one channel for more than 30 seconds at a time.


Lessons Learned from…


One of the unfortunate “side effects” of the last 2 heart attacks is that I can no longer take ginkgo biloba to help with my chronic memory problems. Anyone reading this blog has already probably concluded that I need more brain cells and thus, not being able to take this anymore did not help! Add to that being a little sidetracked by grief and it’s amazing that I’m even typing this right now.

So, to try and stave off the genetic heritage of dementia, I elected to join While some may call it pseudo-science, the reality is that I do think I might be making some small improvements here and there. I’ve only been a member for less than a month, so the jury is still out, but at least I’m actively trying to use my brain each day, which is more than I can say for the “Barney years” when I was only knowledgeable about Arthur, Oscar the Grouch, and Blue’s pal, Magenta.

But, here’s what I’m learning so far:

1. I am a good problem solver. Tell that to the diabolical level Sudoku puzzles I’m trying to complete.

2. I am pretty flexible. Ummm…I raised 3 kids (who couldn’t be more different if they were adopted), worked with college students who don’t know how to sign their names in cursive and counseled people who dream about doing nasty things to other people…in their dreams. Yeah, I think I already knew that.

3. I am lousy at speed tasks. Could that be because game systems came out when I was in the Barney years and I was too busy picking up those game systems??? Hmmm….To this day I have yet to play more than 1 computer game, unless WiiFit counts. (I suck at that, as well.)

4. I’m not much better at memory tasks.

5. Naming your web site “” doesn’t improve my memory. Why? Because it’s not a real word. And I confuse it with other words that are in the dictionary, such as illumine, luminescence, etc. Please note that I can spell those!

6. What is my name? See # 4.

7. I don’t do much better at attention tasks. Why? Because I’m still trying to answer # 6.

8. I’m improving at attention games. Why? Because I finally remembered my name.

9. I kick tail at games involving words. Go figure. Especially if you have to create words beginning with the stem “ill” or “lum”. See # 5.

10. I’m pretty speedy at answering simple math facts. This apparently improves my problem-solving score. I hate to argue with Lumosity, but I’m pretty sure that has to do with memorizing them as a child.

11. Memorizing is usually about employing your memory, right?

12. Since I’m already strong in the problem-solving category, could we up my memory score instead??? See # 11.

13. I am now processing better than the 70 and older age group. I guess I can delay reserving my room at the rest home until tomorrow?

14. I also seem to be remarkably smarter than the 16 to 20 age group. Would Lumosity send an email to my 19 year old to tell him that? Oh. Wait. Send him a text instead. He doesn’t do email anymore.

15. The only area where I don’t kick tail with the aforementioned age group is in the speed area. Perhaps that’s because I wasn’t born with a game controller in my hand like the 19 year old???

16. I have no sense of direction, particularly when it involves the arrow keys on my keyboard.

17. I seem to have an itchy trigger finger when it comes to the arrow keys on my keyboard.

18. I now hate all Lumosity games involving the arrow keys on my keyboard.

19. I think has failed to address one part of my brain–the part of my brain with no hand-to-eye coordination. Where are the games to work on that and measure that??? Oh. Wait. Maybe there are no games where a negative brain score is possible. That’s a glitch in their programming, right?

20.  More of my to-do list gets done if I “reward” myself with playing another Lumosity game.

21. Based on # 20, Pavlov’s dogs are laughing their heads off.

22. Based on # 20, I start addiction therapy next week.

Monday’s Post: Are you a pettifogger?

You Might Also Like: Lessons Learned from Counting Quarters and Lessons Learned from Completing a Hospital Survey



The 12 Days of MIP: 10 & 9…


If you read my post from last Wednesday, then you know I’m in the midst of revealing my 12 favorite posts from this past year which most likely will not make it into the Top 10 or Top 12 of what all of my readers viewed most frequently. Why 12? Because I adore the Christmas song, “The Twelve Days of Christmas.” Thus, this is my little tribute to that illusive bird known as the partridge. Seriously, how many of you have actually seen a partridge???

These posts all missed the top 12 in viewership by a “hair.” May I conclude that you still liked them? Just not as much as the Top 10 or 12 (which I will reveal in January)? I hope so.  Here are # 10 and # 9 and why I consider them my favorites.

Number 10:

“Because I Want to Be with You…”

When I started MIP I wasn’t sure I wanted my Christian viewpoint to take “center stage” in what I posted. But, little by little, God worked on my heart and I realized the whole point of my writing is to work on building a closer relationship with Him. While not every post will be evident of this, a great many of them reveal just how blessed I feel to have Him in my life. This post recounts the beginning of the realization that it was okay to be publicly open about my Christianity, despite an increasingly secular world viewpoint. I debated, for a long, long time whether or not to post this story because it makes me sound crazy and because I hope to fictionally include it in my first book. But, finally, I just couldn’t stand not sharing it, much like Jeremiah just couldn’t stop prophesying. Click here to either review that story or to read it for the first time!

Number 9: 

Lessons Learned from a Routine Examination…

This post is probably the total reverse of the tone of # 10! Because of my health adventures, I have to endure a lot of examinations and hospitalizations. The medical community’s major mistake is to actually make a writer wait for such stuff. It gives me entirely too much time to construct my next posts about the embarrassing and silly things doctors and nurses ask one to endure to take care of health issues. Yes, some of this is definitely fictionalized, but it is oh, so based on actual reality. Click here to laugh again or to get your first insight into the nonsense that is my life.

Monday’s Post: Do you fard? (I beg your pardon!)

You might also like: The 12 Days of MIP: 12 & 11; The Odd Days of December; and Don’t Need Any More Stuff This Christmas? How About This?