Weekly Nail Wrap-Up

I kind of have two weeks’ worth of nail shenanigans to post about in here. I never got around to doing this post last week because I had to travel home to Texas suddenly. I also didn’t change my nail polish a lot last week because I had other things on my mind.

So, this is what I wore last week


For my  “Pink Mani Monday”, I did this flower dotticure. I used China Glaze, “Purple Panic” as the base color. I used OPI, “Suzi Shops & Island Hops” for the lighter pink flowers, and Orly “Million Dollar Views” for the extra dots. My daughter picked out all these colors for me. I think she has a pretty great eye for putting different things together. It was a creative mix that I liked — even though I don’t enjoy pink, generally.


I also wore Colores de Carol, “Demeter”. It is from the Harvest Goddess Collection. This polish is … PERFECTION. I love it so, so much. This shade of blue is beautiful and elegant. And, overall, I feel like this polish has a lot of character and depth to it. I love how the base color gives some of the holographic glitter the loveliest turquoise tint. It’s beautiful in the sunlight — sparkles like crazy! But it’s also gorgeous in normal light. I felt like I was wearing the universe on my nails when I had this one on. It gave me a much-needed emotional boost during an extremely sad time. I expect this polish will remain a favorite.

For this week, I haven’t been in the happiest emotional place. Overall, I’ve been in “don’t give a crap” mode about nearly everything. I’ve gotten next to nothing done all week, although I did change my polish out a fair bit. Doing my nails and seeing the different pretty colors on them makes me happy. I needed a good dose of happy.


For my usual “pink mani Monday”, I wore OPI, “Mad for Madness Sake” and “Petal Soft”. For a pink manicure, I quite liked this one. I think it’s mostly because of the glitter topper (Petal Soft). I really love the soft and delicate appearance it has, and I think it looks great over pretty much every color. As pinks go, however, I really like Mad for Madness Sake. It’s a wonderfully dark, hot pink. It makes me feel a bit sassy when I wear it. I also think it’s a fantastic pedicure color.


Next, I wore  Colores de Carol, “Ceres”. I am a newbie to this brand, but I have quickly become a huge fan. All of her polishes have the most fantastic and smooth formula. And her colors! Gorgeous and creative. I knew I needed this polish the moment I saw it swatched online. I’m a yellow polish fan, and this is the most delicious shade of mustard yellow. I don’t have anything even remotely similar to this color. I also love the fine copper glitters inside it, although I don’t feel I got many of those out on my nails with this manicure. Next time, I’m going to hold the bottle upside-down a little more, and I think that will solve my problem. I think this is such a perfect fall color. It just says “FALL!” to me.


My next manicure was with OPI, “Oh My Majesty”. I’ve had this polish for a while, but never got around to wearing it. I’ve heard so many wonderful things about it, though. So I just KNEW I was going to love it.

Eh. I didn’t love it. At all. And this made me a sad panda. I love white polish. I love the clean look of it and how crisp it looks on my nails. And, as weird as this sounds, I really like the look of it against my pale skin tone. (I know … I’m weird.) This polish is supposed to have a subtle red shift/shimmer to it, which would make it unique in my polish stash. Sadly, I didn’t see that shifty shimmer on my nails at all. And the formula of this polish was a bugger-bear. I had the hardest time working with it. I’m no professional, of course, but I’m also not a slouch when it comes to doing my nails. I’ve had lots of practice. I can’t remember the last time I had to fight so much with a formula. I ended up putting on three coats of this polish in order to get it even close to opaque. Every coat was streaky and messy. It pooled at the sides of my nails and at my cuticles, too. And, even though it looked opaque, I could still see streaks on my nails in certain lights — even after three coats!! Argh! Maybe I was just having a bad day or something when I put this one on; I don’t know. I’ll definitely give it at least one more try before I take it out of my stash.


So, I kept Oh My Majesty on my nails for barely a day. Because … my Superchic Lacquer Urban Dictionary order arrived in the mail. Oh my good googley gosh!! I had been waiting on pins and needles for these polishes. I was so excited about getting them. And, after the disappointment that was Oh My Majesty, these were a breath of fresh air.

I ordered five polishes from this collection, and I couldn’t decide which one to try first. So I let my daughter pick for me. She chose “Deadpool”. It. Is. Fabulous. Fabulous!!! This polish has the most amazing teal color. It is rich and deep and gorgeous. I especially like that it leans more toward the blue side of life than the green. As you know, I adore my blues. This is a one coat polish. One coat!!!! I still can’t get over the fact that I was able to get color this rich and opaque with just one coat of polish. I love the color of this one in normal light, but it absolutely comes alive in sunlight. I’m going to include an extra picture to show the magnificence. So. Many. Rainbows! (eeeek!!!)



And, finally, I wore Superchic Lacquer, “Rum-Billie”. OK, seriously. How is it that I’ve lived all these years without this polish? How?? Can I marry a nail polish? Because this polish had me at “hello”. The formula on this polish is beyond perfection. It’s buttery and amazing and has the color of melted caramel. I’m wearing it on my nails right now, and I’m so absolutely in love with it. I adore the color, which feels so perfect for Fall, in every light. But this one was zOMGoodnessGORGEOUS in the sunlight. We had mostly clouds and rain today, but there was a short burst of sunlight just after I put this on my nails. I think I heard angels singing. For real.




I lost my beloved aunt last week. “Lost” is a weird way of talking about death, isn’t it? It makes it sound like I’ve temporarily misplaced her, but I can find her if I just look hard enough. Perhaps she is hiding out in one of my cluttered closets or behind the TV stand. Or maybe I simply lost track of where she went, so that I might see her in the cereal aisle at the grocery store or standing in line to pay a bill. Oh, how I wish that was true. I wish it with all my heart.

My Aunt Sue was the last of my beloved aunts. She was my mom’s younger sister. We lost my Aunt Pat, my mom’s older sister, last Christmas. And so now, in the span of just ten short months, it seems that everything in the universe has changed. I no longer have any aunts. They still live in my heart and my memories. They are still very much loved by me and always will be. But they are no longer here, where I can hear their voices or listen to their advice or give them a hug. Ten months ago, my mom was a sister. And now, she is not. My mom is the last person left from her family. She still has my dad, my brother, and me. She still has nieces and nephews. But, really, it’s not the same. I can’t even begin to fathom how it must feel to outlive everyone you grew up with, everyone who shares your history and your memories and stories. I can hardly bear to think about it.

And for me, selfishly, I feel angry with the universe. Angry and cheated. Wasn’t losing Aunt Pat enough? Wasn’t it enough that our family should be expected to carry on without her in our lives? I think we were all just beginning to feel our way through this new territory. My Aunt Pat had been very ill. For such a long time, she hadn’t been able to do the things she loved. She hadn’t been able to visit with the people she loved so much. She had lost so much of her normal life. Selfishly, I wish she was still here with us, but, realistically, I know she was suffering terribly. Still, I wish I could talk to her again or sit quietly with her or watch her sew or paint. My Aunt Pat did the most beautiful crewel embroidery. And she painted beautifully, all self-taught, as far as I know. Watching her work was like watching magic happen right before my eyes. It always amazed me how she could bring a sketch to life with needle and thread or simple paints. She was a strong, confident, and sometimes bossy woman. I say that with a smile on my face; I don’t mean it in a negative or mean way at all. She was full of joy and so much love. She was beautiful. I will always remember her beautiful smile.  She taught me how to sew and embroider. I can still remember how she was so patient and, yet, always insisted I do things perfectly. I will always be grateful for those lessons: if you’re going to do something … if you’re going to put your time and  your effort into it … be sure to get it right so that you can look at what you’ve created with pride. She loved roses and cacti and gardening. She and my uncle always had the most amazing yard. Really, it was more like a park than a yard.


My Aunt Sue’s death was very sudden and unexpected. She hadn’t been sick. As far as anyone knows, she hadn’t been feeling poorly at all. She and my uncle had gone to town for a shopping trip on the morning of the day she passed away. Everything seemed normal and fine. Honestly, even now, it doesn’t feel real to me. I keep thinking I will wake up tomorrow and realize that it was all a dream. And then, I will call or text Aunt Sue to tell her about it, and she will laugh about how silly I was. It just doesn’t seem possible that there can be a world without her in it. And a world without both of my aunts seems beyond impossible. They were both such important parts of my life. And they have left spaces in my heart that will never be filled. Overall, I don’t feel I have been handling this well. I will be going along with my normal day (or trying to, anyhow), and I will think that I’m okay. Suddenly, a wave of sadness and memory will hit me, as if my mind is reminding me that nothing is the same and everything has changed. It’s nearly unbearable at times. Perhaps grief is like that. I don’t know.

My Aunt Sue was an amazing woman. She was a bit of a free spirit and a bit of a flirt. She was beautiful, just like my Aunt Pat. When I was a little kid, I loved for Aunt Sue to come and visit. She was like a breath of fresh air in a life that felt small and kind of boring. Her visits meant ice cream for breakfast, games until way past bedtime, watching her put on make-up (I always thought she was so glamorous and chic), and hearing crazy stories about her job. For many years, she was a flight attendant. And, let me tell you, she had some wild and wonderful stories and experiences with that job. But, over the years, she did many things. She ran for (and held) public office. She decided to go back to school to become a teacher. She taught school for many years. She ranched alongside my uncle. And she had crazy, fun stories from each and every one of these endeavors. She had a zest for life that is nearly indescribable, but, if you were in a room with her, you would feel it. It was like the air got a bit lighter, the sun a bit brighter, and life became a bit more of an adventure. I loved going to visit her when I was young, because she lived in an apartment in a big city. It seemed like such a glamorous and exciting way to live. She was always laughing, always smiling. Basically, I grew up wanting to be just like my Aunt Sue. My Aunt Sue married a kind, soft-spoken, gentle man who has a sly and rather wicked sense of humor. Their love story was beautiful and strong. And she leaves behind two amazing, beautiful daughters. My cousins truly are two of the most incredible women I’ve ever met.

The thing is, my Aunt Pat and my Aunt Sue, in many ways, had very different lives. And yet, as I sit here and think about them both with an aching heart full of grief, the one thing I can say about them is that they LIVED. Both of them knew what they wanted from life. They were both daring enough to go after those things with all their hearts, until they molded out the lives they wanted. They lived to the fullest and left behind so many people who loved and cherished them: husbands, children, nieces, nephews, brothers-in-law, a sister. When I think about the hardships they faced and the sheer strength and courage they both had … Well, it amazes me. I can’t think of another way to describe it. It amazes me and makes me proud that I come from two such incredible women.


And now, I realize that, when I grow up, I want to be like both of my beloved aunts. I want to be strong and full of courage. I want to be bold and daring enough to go after the things I want — to chase them down with a free spirit and with my whole heart. I want to learn how to LIVE.

Fall Polish Picks: Browns & Greens


I love wearing browns and coppers at any time of the year, but I especially love them in the Fall. Pantone listed a couple of different brown tones in their “trending” report, but let’s face it: I would have included these colors even if Pantone had overlooked them. There is just something about a great brown or copper polish that gets my polish-junkie blood going. They are some of my favorite tones to wear in the Fall, and I generally enjoy both of these against my (so-light-it’s-almost-invisible) skin tone.


First up is Orly, “Million Dollar Views”. This is a new polish, from their Fall 2016 Mulholland Collection. It’s described as a metallic copper foil.

I know I’ve posted about this polish fairly recently (within the last few months), but I had to include it here, too. I love this polish. It didn’t show a ton of brush strokes, which can be an issue with foil/metallic polishes. It applied easily and built up well. And the color is beyond amazing. It is a perfect, coppery, new-penny color that is spot-on for Fall.


Zoya, “Cinnamon”. This polish is originally from the Fall 2015 Flair Collection, and the Zoya website describes it as “a classic bronze liquid metal”.

I don’t think of this one as a bronze. It looks more brown to my eye, although it has a beautiful bronze/gold undertone that comes out in different lighting. I like the finish of this polish, as it seems to strike a balance between a metallic and a creme. It goes on easily, with a nearly perfect formula (which is pretty typical for Zoya). This is a stunning, stunning polish. I love how rich and deep it looks, and I enjoy the way it contrasts with my super light skin tone.


OPI, “Today I Accomplished Zero”. This is originally from the 2014 Coca-Cola Collection, but it’s a new polish for my stash. I purchased this over the summer, while visiting my parents in Texas. And I immediately fell in polish-junkie lust with it.

This is a strange choice for my brown/copper list because it clearly has a black base. I have seen this described as a black jelly base with pink glitters. This totally blew my mind, because I never would have pegged those glitters as pink. To my eye, they have a gorgeously copper/red tone to them. The glitter fabulousness is exactly why this polish landed in with my copper and brown picks for the Fall. I love the squishy appearance to the base, but the glitters are the entire show for this polish. They glint through the dark base with a beautifully coppery appearance, and they look like little, fizzy bubbles. I wasn’t sure about this one when I saw it in the bottle, but I love, love LOVE it on the nail.


OPI, “Espresso Your Style”. This is originally from the Holiday 2006 Kick Up Your Heels Collection, and I’ve seen it described as a mid-tone brown shimmer. It looks super dark in the bottle, but the shimmer shows up nicely on the nail.

This one reminds me of crunching through Fall leaves. It’s such a lovely shade of brown — not too light, not too dark. I love how the shimmer never seems to shift to gold or bronze, but always stays brown. I wore the heck out of this one last year, when I first purchased it. It is just lovely, lovely, lovely.


Green isn’t a color I would typically think of for Fall. Until recently, green wasn’t even a color I would have thought about wearing on my nails regularly. Over the last few months, though, I have found myself falling more and more in love with greens. So when I saw it listed on the Pantone “trending” list for Fall colors, I was like, “Well, of course! Green is awesome!!”


This is Zoya, “Merida”. It’s new for this Fall, from the Zoya Urban Grunge Collection. The Zoya website describes this polish as, “a brilliant lush evergreen scattered holo”.

Yep. That description is pretty much spot-on. The color is deep and lush, and I like the cool tone I see in this one. Maybe I’m crazy, but I see a black or dark blue undertone in the green. This polish is pretty much perfect in every way. It’s a lovely, rich color for Fall, but also kind of tends toward that jewel tone look I enjoy for both Fall and Winter. The holographic is spectacular. It comes alive in daylight, but also in certain types of indoor lighting. I had a hard time staying out of elevators when I had this beauty on my nails, because the holographic is fan-freaking-tastic under elevator lights! I’m looking forward to wearing this one again and again and again and again and … *ahem*


This is Zoya, “Midori”. The Zoya website describes this one as, “a glowing medium apple green with yellow undertones and strong gold shimmer”.

This polish was originally from the Summer 2009 Oooh-La-La Collection, but it’s a very recent addition to my own polish stash. I feel like this one is perfect for Fall because it’s such a lovely tone of green. The yellow undertones and gold shimmer lend it a Fall feeling, and it goes on in two easy coats — pretty much like all of my Zoya polishes.


My next green is OPI, “Thanks a Windmillion”. It’s originally from the Spring 2012 Holland Collection, and I’ve seen it described as a light green, leaning toward a sea foam green color.

To my eye, this is a murky sort of green that has quite a bit of gray in it. I don’t feel like it is particularly light in color tone when I see it on my own nails, perhaps because my skin tone is super light in comparison. I think the murkiness makes it a perfect color for Fall. This is an older polish in my stash, but I haven’t worn it all that much. I remember absolutely loving the color of it in the bottle. But I wasn’t crazy about it on my own nails. This was a few years ago, though. When I swatched it for this post, I was like, “YES!! I love this!!” So it seems my personal color tolerances have changed a bit over the years. Yay for expanding my limited horizons!


Finally, here is OPI, “Stranger Tides”. This polish was originally from the 2011 Spring Brights Collection, which was called “The Pirates of Stranger Tides”. It’s an olive/khaki green color. No shimmer or glitter in this one, just a lovely, plain creme formula that OPI does so well.

So, again, here I am picking a “spring” color for the Fall. What can I say? I’m a total rebel without a cause. I think this color is perfect for  Fall because it’s got an almost cloudy appearance to it. The color leans toward a lighter, dirtier green in some lights and brown in others. It’s an “ugly pretty” color for me, for sure. I loved it immediately when I first tried it (back in the Spring/Summer this past year), but it really made me think “Fall” when I saw it on my nails. That doesn’t happen often, as I typically just wear what appeals to me most at any given time. I wanted to make sure to pull this one out again for the Fall to give it the love it deserves. I also think this polish would be beautiful under quite a few of my glitter toppers because it has a neutral feeling to it.


Weekly Nail Wrap-Up

It’s Friday! Yay! It’s Friday! Yay! Eh. As mottoes go, it leaves something to be desired. Still … YAY!! I’m so happy to see the end of this week, as it’s been a busy and hectic one. My weekend isn’t looking any more sane, but at least we won’t have to contend with school and homework for a few days. I’m looking forward to the long weekend, too, as I’ve been feeling a bit under the weather for the past few days. I got my flu shot a couple of days ago, and it always leaves me feeling icky-sicky.

So, on to the polish shenanigans!!


I started off my week with a pink manicure. This, in itself, is pretty unusual for me at any time of the year. It probably looks particularly unusual now, since most nail polish junkies are heading toward their darker Fall colors. But, a group that I post in on Facebook decided to start a “Pink Nails for BCA” thing where you wear and post a pink manicure every Monday during October. This water marble was my offering for the first Monday of the month.

I did this with Orly, “Kiss the Bride” (the light pink) and Orly, “Beach Cruiser” (the dark pink). I love both of those colors and, like pretty much every Orly I’ve ever used, both of these polishes are flawless in color and formula. I really liked the two colors together, and I was super happy with how this turned out. (So happy that I, apparently, had to snap a picture before I finished doing all my clean-up around my nails. Oh well.) This kind of reminded me of peppermint candy or something. If I was a pink lover, I would be very likely to try this manicure again. Heck, I’m not even a pink lover, and I may try it again in the Summer. For some reason, it has a very “summer” sort of feel to it for me. I used China Glaze, “Fresh Prince-ss”, from the Fall 2016 Rebel Collection, as the base underneath all the water marbling. I ended up not liking that China Glaze polish much at all. The color was fine, but my bottle is thick and gloopy. I think it might have been unsealed and/or leaking at some point before I got it, because I found polish caked around the top of the bottle. So it might just be my bottle and not the polish itself. Either way, it was disappointing.


The pink, of course, didn’t stay on my nails for very long. And, once it was gone, I headed right toward my oh-so-beloved blues! My next manicure was with Colores de Carol, “Summer Glacier”. I just realized this polish looks a bit “brush-strokey” in my picture, but it wasn’t like this in real life. I take all my pictures right next to the window in my home office, so I’m guessing there was some a weird reflection happening from the blinds or something.

Honestly, I wasn’t completely sure about this polish when I ordered it. I thought it was pretty enough to give it a try. And, well, it’s blue … so there is that. But, this was not the polish I was the most excited about out of that particular order.

Well … Let me tell you: This polish completely captivated me as soon as I saw it in person. It was the very first polish I wore out of my order.  And, I even wore it before any of the Halloween Collection polishes that I had been so excited about wearing. Needless to say, I ended up LOVING this polish. I’m so glad I ordered it. It is amazingly delicate and pretty on the nail. I love how the larger glitters mix in with the color and the smaller holographic glitters. It is gorgeously sparkly in the sunlight. And the color — !!! I love the color so, so much. Have you ever seen pictures showing the deep, intense, blue-green color in glaciers? This polish is that exact color. I swear, it really is! In the bottle, it looked completely blue to me. But, once I put it on my nails, I was like, “Yep! This really does look like packed-in ice.” I think this one will be beautiful for winter, too.


Continuing on with my Colores de Carol adoration for the week, my next manicure was with “Vampire Nightmare”. This polish is part of the 2016 Halloween Collection. It’s not necessarily a color I would expect to go all ga-ga for, and yet, I was completely smitten with it when I saw it swatched on YouTube and in some of the blogs I follow.

In person, this polish is everything I expected and more. Oh, so much more. It is such an amazing, moody, reddish-brown color. In some lights, it looks red; in others, it looks much more brown. There is so much holographic glitter running through this one, too. It is stunning. Absolutely, amazingly stunning. And it looks incredible in the sunlight. I found the formula for this one to be pretty darn perfect, and it was opaque in two easy coats. I’m showing two coats in my photo, but I ended up doing three coats total. I loved how the color deepened and looked richer with the third coat. This is one of those polishes that makes me want to whisper sweet nothings to my nails as I’m applying it. You know: “Ooooh! You’re so pretty. I love you so much.” And so on. Surely, I’m not the only nail polish junkie out here who does that. Anyone? Anyone? *ahem*


Last but certainly not least, I wore Colores de Carol, “Feronia”. In fact, this is what is on my nails right this moment. This is one of the Fall 2016 Harvest Goddess polishes. It. Is. Fantastic. Fan-freaking-tastic!!!!one!!! Yeah. It really is that darn good.

This is another of those colors I never thought I would go for, but Colores de Carol is really expanding my boundaries and opening my mind with regard to my color comfort level. Before this, I was like, “Eh, Green. I guess it’s okay.” Now, though, I’m all, “Green!! Yes, yes, YES!!!”

In some lights, the base color of this polish looks like a forest green. In others, it looks  more like a dark olive. The base is so jelly-like and squishy and perfect. I love the way it looks on my nails, both the texture/finish and the color. But that’s not even the best thing about this polish. The best thing about it is the glitter. zOMGoodness, the glitter!! The website lists the glitter as being holographic silver glitter and micro holo flakes. But, there is something about the combination of the silver glitter with the green tones of this polish, because it looks gorgeously gold to my eye. Especially in the sun. This polish comes alive in natural daylight, because you can see the deep and delicious tones in the base color, as well as the sparkly goodness of the glitters. I think this is one of those polishes  you have to see in person in order to get the full impact of it. I’m so happy to have it in my collection.


A Little Puppy Love

I honestly can’t believe I’ve never shared this story here on my blog. I have had it written up for quite a while, but, somehow, I guess I never got around to posting it. I’ve searched my blog up and down without finding it. At first, after not finding it posted in here, I told myself I wouldn’t share it at all. Perhaps too much time had passed, and there is something about this memory that still feels raw and emotional to me. Raw and emotional in a good way, but still …

Anyhow, my anniversary is coming up soon. On Monday, I will have been married to my beloved husband for eighteen years. When I started thinking about that, my thoughts, naturally, turned toward how my husband makes me feel loved and special all the time. Not necessarily in giant ways, but in little ways. Don’t get me wrong. Giant shows of affection and love are wonderful. But I think it’s the little things upon which a strong marriage is built. This memory  is one of those “little” things. Once I realized that, I knew I had to share it. So, here goes …

Once upon a time, I was young and just starting out in life. This was before I had finished graduate school … or even college. It was before I had figured out who I was and who I wanted to be. Actually, I’m still trying to work that one out, but I suppose that’s a post for another time. This was before I was a mom. Or a wife. Back then, it was just my boyfriend and me, set adrift in a huge and exciting universe full of adventure and possibility. One day, of course, my boyfriend would become my fiancé. And then, my husband. But I didn’t know that back then. I hoped, but I didn’t know.

My sweetie bought me a puppy. He was my first English Springer Spaniel — a perfect bundle of cuteness, mischief, and energy all wrapped up in a furry package, complete with sweet puppy breath. I loved him from the first moment we met, and, through him, I fell head over heels for an entire breed. We named him Tex, and he was my “gateway dog”. He went to graduate school with me. He slept on my bed. He was there for me when I thought my whole world was horrible and wrong. He moved from place to place with me. When I thought I was the biggest failure in the world, he showed me that I was someone worthy of love. He was my child before I had a human child. He’s been gone for over 10 years now, and I still grieve for him.


When Tex was a puppy, my husband (then-boyfriend) gave me a sweet, little, ceramic Springer Spaniel figure. It was tiny and so cute and perfect, even though it wasn’t the exact same color as my Tex. It was special to me because it represented my Tex Boy, and because my sweetheart gave it to me knowing I would love it. And, over time, it became even more sentimental and special to me. I carted this little figure all over Texas as I moved from one place to another. I moved it from Texas to Virginia with only minor damage. I had this figure for over twenty years. It always sat on my bookshelf, and, after Tex passed, it sat on top of the box containing his ashes. It seemed fitting, somehow.

Some time ago, I happened to be looking at my bookshelf, and I noticed that my little dog statue didn’t look quite right. Upon closer inspection, I realized my cleaning ladies had broken my little dog beyond repair. All four legs were gone and, of course, they didn’t bother gathering up the pieces so that I could repair it. I searched for them in my office and under the shelves, but I’m sure the legs were long gone, probably sucked up in the vacuum cleaner or tossed out with the trash. Because, really, how could the cleaning ladies know how important this little statue was? How could they know that, out of all the things I own in this world, this one, little, seemingly unimportant bit of ceramic and paint was irreplaceable?


I was heartbroken. Just heartbroken. I sat at my desk, holding my little broken dog, and cried. I cried because there are parts of me that are still broken from losing my Tex, even after all these years. I cried because my little dog couldn’t be replaced and because it had felt as if so many of my memories were held within that one, little piece. I cried because I had so carefully moved this statue from place to place, and it had only taken my cleaning ladies one thoughtless moment to undo years of care. I cried because, even though I knew it was such a little thing, it all just seemed so damn unfair. I cried until I didn’t think I could cry any more. Until I thought I was all cried out, and I was able to remind myself how silly I was being. I took a deep breath, wiped my tears, and put my broken dog back on the shelf, on top of the little box holding Tex’s ashes.

That evening, my husband came home and realized I was upset over something. He asked what it was, and I told him. Even though I thought I had cried myself out earlier in the day … and even though I knew I was being silly about it … I started crying all over again as I explained to him about my little, broken dog. My husband held me and let me cry. He didn’t tell me I was being silly. He didn’t tell me it was “just a statue”. He didn’t tell me I shouldn’t be upset. He told me he was sorry and that he loved me.

A week or so later, a box arrived in the mail. It was addressed to me and covered with many stamps. I was curious and confused, as I knew I hadn’t ordered anything. My husband called and told me I should open it. And so, I did.


Inside was a little, ceramic dog statue. Just like the one my cleaning ladies had broken. It was a perfect replica, right down to the funny little spot on the side of the dog’s nose. And, in the packing materials, there was a little Springer puppy, too. Unbeknownst to me, my husband had spent a few days online, tracking down a replacement for my broken dog. I gently removed it from the packing materials and set it on my shelf, next to the box that holds Tex’s ashes. I’m not sure I have ever felt more loved than in that moment. And, yes, I cried. But this time, they were happy tears.

If Wishes Were Horses

I just realized today that it’s Tuesday already, which means Monday, somehow, did that ninja-sneak thing where it manages to squeak by without me realizing it. And, of course, this means that I am now two days into a new week and one day behind. I stared at my calendar this morning in my half-awake state and thought about how I wished I hadn’t forgotten to do my blog post yesterday.

And then, that led me to think about wishing, in general. And about how I spend a lot of time wishing for things. Mostly, I wish I was “more”. You know, more capable of achieving perfection — or, well, the ideal of “perfection” that the people around me seem to have. I wish I was more organized. Or braver. Or prettier. Or thinner. Or taller. I wish for taller a lot; I think it’s because my mom is only five feet tall, and she always felt I “fell short” (literally) because I didn’t manage to hit six feet. Sometimes, I wish I was funnier or more clever. I wish I had better hair. I really wish I had better hair. I wish I could summon up the energy to give a shit about the things that are supposed to be (according to others) so important to me.  I wish I had my life together. I used to think I had all my proverbial ducks in a row, walking the straight and narrow and quacking exactly on cue. Now, in my second twenties, I realize all of that was a shabby illusion, and I am more lost and confused now than I was decades ago. The difference is that the world around us makes allowances for “lost” when you are in your twenties. People expect it. But the universe doesn’t like it when the same thing happens to a chubby chick pushing the big 5-0.


I wish I could go back in time and change things. Would I make the same decisions if I had it all to do over again? Would I still end up where I am now — a nobody with no prospects and little future, who failed entirely to live up to her potential? Would I make the same mistakes? Were the choices I made even mistakes at all? I wish I could right the wrongs I did in my past. They were mostly unintentional: things done or said carelessly, because I was young and stupid about the world and about life. Even so, those things haunt me. I can’t find forgiveness in my heart for them.

I wish I had been able to have a second child. Oh, how I wish that. I particularly wish it when people ask me to explain WHY I chose to have an only child, as if my reproductive choices are any of their business. As if I have to justify myself. I wish it when people ask me if I worry about my daughter being all alone in the world after my husband and I are gone. Of course I worry about that. And yet, I have to remind myself of how very blessed I am. Having that one, precious child wasn’t easy for my husband and me. We really had to work for it. For a long time. I am lucky — so lucky — to have her. I know that. I KNOW that. Still, it doesn’t stop me from wishing for more, because I am human and I think we are all inherently a bit selfish and grabby with life.

Often, I wish I was a different person entirely. This wish kind of encompasses all the other, smaller wishes I have (braver, thinner, better hair, taller, etc …). I think this is why I love writing so much. When the words are flowing and I can feel the world that I see so clearly in my mind jumping out onto the page, I really can be a different person — someone who has exciting adventures, or someone who doesn’t have exciting adventures but is okay with that, or … well, whatever. When the writing is good, I can be anyone I want to be, even if it’s just for a little while and only in my imagination.


Lately, though, writing has been The Suck. So I spend a lot of time staring at my computer screen’s dastardly blinking cursor and wishing I could figure out why my words have deserted me. I also spend a lot of time distracting myself away from writing by finding little, unimportant tasks to occupy my mind. I know I am afraid, and that’s why I’m doing my  level best to avoid the whole thing. Even though I hate myself for doing that. Even though avoiding writing makes me feel even worse, even more like a failure. I wish I could figure out how to stop ignoring the thoughts and words in my brain and start putting them out there. It’s the only thing I ever really  wanted to do — the only thing that was ever truly “me” and not something I did or wanted because the people around me wanted it for me. It hurts to think that, maybe, all of that is gone. I wish I was brave enough to believe in myself.

Mostly, though, I wish I could stand in front of the mirror and look at myself — really, really look at myself — with compassion and love. I wish I could smile at reflection me and tell her, “Hey. Don’t worry. You’re okay. It’s okay to be who you are.” And I wish she would believe me. I wish I believed it, too.

Colores de Carol Halloween 2016

For one of my nail polish “extras” this week, I wanted to post about the Colores de Carol Halloween Collection for 2016. I know this post is coming a bit late, but I missed the pre-order period for these polishes by about a day or so. And then I had to wait (ever so anxiously!) for them to arrive. There was much celebrating, including dancing and whoops of joy, when they arrived this week.

I don’t normally purchase entire collections. I typically pick and choose which colors I love the most, which might be pretty normal for most people. Sometimes, I will end up with almost an entire collection, which is what happened for both the Colores de Carol Fall 2016 collection and the China Glaze Fall 2016 Collection. I might do posts for those (at least, for the polishes that I have) later. For this Halloween Collection, I was surprised to find I was completely smitten with every polish in here. It’s a small collection, too, which helps me feel less guilty about grabbing the whole thing.

I have recently fallen super hard for Colores de Carol. It is an “indie” brand, and I’m very new to the whole “indie polish” game. I think I purchased my first indie (from Glam Polish) about 6 months ago (?). Maybe a bit more than that, but less than a year ago. I made my first Colores de Carol order less than a month ago, but I was hooked in, big-time, from the first moment I tried one of her polishes on my nails. I love how creative her colors and finishes are, and the formulas are spot-on perfect. At least, everything I have tried so far has been that way. Needless to say, Colores de Carol quickly became a favorite for me.

So … On to the Halloween Collection! Ugh. I love it so much that I want to squeal. Seriously. A chubby, middle-aged woman … squealing. Can anything be more ridiculous and pathetic? I have no idea. But, hey, when the happy squeals are in you, they just NEED to come out.


This is the whole collection in their cute little bottles. From R to L, there is: “Glitter Phantom”, “Morticia”, “Chimera”, and “Vampire Nightmare”. Right away, just looking at them in the bottles, I have to say I love the variety  in here. I love the mix of colors you can find in Glitter Phantom. I also love how there is not only an orange, but a deep, sexy red and a gorgeously dark blue-violet. Blue, in particular, isn’t necessarily a color one might think of for Halloween. But I feel like it works so well with the other colors in this collection. And the orange! Oh my googley-gosh! That orange is just fabulous. It’s beyond fabulous.


OK, so you guys know me. I am, of course, going to start with the blue. This is Morticia. The Colores de Carol website describes this one as, “a deep violet holographic with blue shimmer to it, micro holo glitter, and holo flakes.”

She is so freaking sexy and amazing. When I look at this polish, I really do think of Morticia from the Addams Family TV show, with her long, violet-black hair and black dress. Look at all those glitters and sparkles in that polish! I love how  you can see some reds and some lighter blues peeking out through the deep, dark base. This one went on perfectly in two easy coats. It almost could have been a one-coater, although I liked the way the color deepened up with the second coat. This one applied so well that I didn’t even have any clean-up with it.


This is Chimera. The Colores de Carol website describes this one as, “a semi metallic orange holographic with orange holo glitter and micro holo flakes”.

I think it’s hard to pick a “star” from this collection, as all the polishes are fantastic. But, if there is a true “star”, Chimera might be it. This is definitely the brightest, flashiest polish out of the set. I’m a huge fan of orange polishes, and I have never seen anything like this one. I love how the almost metallic finish mixes in with all the holographic glitter and flakes in here. It creates a finish that reminds me of spun glass on my nails. It is So Freaking Pretty!! I feel like this is a great, kind of mid-toned orange. It’s a little bit juicy, but also a tiny bit burned, if that makes sense. I think this one would look fantastic on almost any skin tone. I’m so in love with this one that I have a feeling I’m going to be rocking it hard all season, not just for Halloween.


This is Vampire Nightmare. The Colores de Carol website describes this one as, “a dark brownish red holographic with gold glitter and holo flakes”.

Yep. Stick a fork in me, because I am done! I’m not usually a fan of reds. I know I sound like a broken record on this. But this one … just wowza! I fell hard for this polish when I saw it swatched by my favorite YouTube polish channel. And, actually, it was this polish that pushed me over the edge and made me realize I NEEDED the entire Halloween Collection. I love how the brown and red mixes so effortlessly in this polish. It makes a perfect color that’s in between a true red and an oxblood red. Honestly, it looks like old iron (or, perhaps, dried blood … although that’s kind of gross: ha, ha). And the gold glitters combined with the holographic flakes … SPECTACULAR! There is no other word for it. I am 99% sure that this polish will be my next manicure. I can’t wait!


Last, but certainly not least, there is Glitter Phantom. The Colores de Carol website describes this one as, “a sparkly clear base packed with white, orange, green, and black glitters and black bats”.

This glitter topper is LOVE. I saw it swatched on the Colores de Carol website over a sort of soft gray polish, and I thought it looked amazing that way. I applied it over China Glaze Dope Taupe, from the Fall 2016 Rebel Collection. It’s a bit more on the brown side than the swatch picture I loved so much, but I think it still looks fantastic. This glitter would look amazing over many different base colors. I think it would be fabulous over a light to mid-toned purple, and it would really pop over a white. I didn’t get any of the little bats out of the bottle on my application. They are in there, but I was in a hurry, so I basically slapped this on quickly in order to take a picture while I still had a little bit of natural light left. Even without the bats, I love this one. The mix of orange and green is vibrant and beautiful, and the black glitters set them off perfectly. This glitter also comes with a little baggie of extra bat glitters, so you can pick them out of there and place them where you like on your nail.

All in all, I think this collection is fun and fabulous. As I said, I love the mix of colors and finishes. And I think the glitter topper is too much fun. If you’re at all interested in purchasing from this polish brand, here is a link to their online store: http://coloresdecarol.bigcartel.com . I am NOT affiliated with this company at all. I’m just a huge fan of their polishes, and I can’t stop myself from loving them and gushing over all of them!


Fall Polish Picks: Gray & Red

According to the Pantone website, Gray and Red are two more of the colors that will be popular/trending for Fall. This makes absolute sense to me, as I love gray any time of the year. I’m a total sucker for gray polish. I also think Red is a great color for Fall, especially later Fall and leading into Winter. I particularly adore Red around the Christmas holidays, although that’s definitely another post for another time. I don’t generally get the same warm-fuzzy feelings about reds that I do with the grays, but I’m continually trying to step out of my comfort zone and find reds that I like with my skin tone.

Again, I’m only addressing main stream polishes here. And most of these are older. It’s been such fun shopping through my collection to rediscover my old loves and find new ones.



China Glaze, “Fade Into Hue”. This is from the Spring 2013 Avant Garden collection. It’s a soft periwinkle creme.

I realize including this one might be a bit of a reach for a few reasons. First, it’s one of those “Is it blue? Is it periwinkle? Is it purple? Is it somewhere in between?” types of colors. In some lights you can really see the blue/periwinkle color to it. But it also has a lot of gray to my eye. I’ve always thought of it as a softer, sort of grayed-out polish. Second, it’s from a Spring collection, which would seem to make it not entirely suitable for Fall. I do think this polish is lovely in the Spring, but it also feels very “Fall” to me. It reminds me of a cloudy Fall day, when there is just a hint of blue sky that you can see behind the gray clouds. This is a lovely, lovely polish. The formula is decent, too. It goes on a bit streaky/sheer on the first coat, but evens out well with the second.


China Glaze, “Change Your Altitude”. This is from the Fall 2015 Great Outdoors Collection, and it’s a warm gray creme with slightly pink undertones.

Depending on the light, I sometimes think this polish looks tan. And then, sometimes, the pinkish undertones come out a lot more, although it never looks truly pink. This one reminds me of the way dry cement looks when the sun shines on it. It’s a beautiful neutral and has a wonderful formula: two or three easy coats. This is pretty much my favorite gray of all time. I wore the heck out of this polish last year — all year long, but particularly in the Fall and Winter. It also looks great under most glitter toppers.


China Glaze, “Recycle”. This is from the Spring 2008 E-Collection. It’s a mid-tone to dark, almost rubbery-looking gray. I would say it probably leans more to mid-tone because it always looks gray on the nail.

To my eye, this is a much cooler gray than Change Your Altitude. I feel like I see brown undertones in it, too. Even though it’s a creme polish, it has a rubbery/squishy sort of appearance on the nail. I quite like that. It reminds me of wet sidewalks on a chilly Fall day or, maybe, the leaden appearance of a Fall sky as a front comes rolling in.



Zoya, “Sarah”. This is from the 2010 Winter/Holiday Fire & Ice Collection. The Zoya website describes Sarah as, “a red-ruby toned metallic with a dark fuchsia sparkle.”

Yep. That about sums this one up perfectly. This red is gorgeously luscious, and it definitely gets noticed. It is moody and sexy, and I love its cool undertone. To my eye, it seems closer to a berry red than a ruby one. Either way, this one is deep and beautiful and luxurious.


OPI, “Thank Glogg It’s Friday”. This is from the 2014 Nordic Collection. This is a hard red to describe. It kind of walks the line between red and burgundy, with an almost fuchsia appearance in certain light. It has a pearl finish, which is very shimmery and bright on the nail.

I loved quite a few of the polishes from the Nordic Collection, but this one wasn’t one of them — at least not when the collection first came out. I happened across this one over the summer while I was visiting my parents. I was drawn to the bottle, although I also felt kind of unsure about it. I mean, overall, it kind of looks “meh” in the bottle. But this one is beyond spectacular on the nail. The pearly, shimmery finish shows up beautifully in the sun. But it looks rich and deep in darker light or shade. This quickly became my go-to pedicure color. It is almost always on my toes — I love it that much!


OPI, “Ro-Man-Ce On The Moon”. This is from the 2015 Holiday Starlight Collection. It’s a bright red, cool-toned shimmer.

This polish seems to glow right off the nail, as if it has a secret that it’s keeping from the universe. It’s a beautifully cool-toned red: not too bright, but enough that it will still get noticed. It’s full of drama and impact.


Weekly Nail Wrap-Up + September Favorites

There were lots of nail shenanigans in my neck of the woods this week, although not all my efforts ended up on my fingertips. I have become so enamored with the whole water marbling thing that I did a lot of experimenting this week. It was fun pulling different colors out of my collection to see the combinations, as well as what spread well in the water and what didn’t. In the end, though, I only wore one water marble manicure, and it was a partial. I was more in the mode of wanting to see some of my newest polishes in all their beautiful glory. I love nail art, but seeing all those wonderful colors solo makes me pretty darn happy, too.

So, on to what I’ve been loving this week! And, since we’re coming to the end of yet another month (seriously — how does this keep happening so quickly? it’s madness, i tell you. madness!), I’m going to stick my September favorites down at the end of this post.


I started out the week with Colores de Carol, “Road Warrior”. This polish is described on the Colores de Carol website as “a black holo with holo flakes and micro holo glitter”.

This polish is delicious. That’s the best word I can think of to describe it. Delicious, delicious, delicious. Hmmm … that word becomes more and more fun the more I type it. The holographic glitters nestle down into the deep, dark blackness of this polish, and they come alive in the sun with multi-colored twinkles. I really enjoyed the spread of the micro glitters in this one, although I felt like I didn’t get too many flakes out onto my nails. This could be because I didn’t mix my bottle well enough before wearing it. Or, it could be that the flakes get a bit lost in the base because it’s so dark. Whatever the case, the flakes are totally optional for me with this one. Even if it just had the micro glitters, I would still adore it. The base color is so deep and rich, and those little, colorful twinkles are just the icing on a very yummy cake.

As with all the Colores de Carol polishes I have tried so far, this one had a wonderful formula. It went on in two easy, smooth coats.


This was the only water marble that made it onto my nails this week. This is Zoya, “Merida” and “Aggie”. Merida is the dark green, and was part of the Fall Urban Grunge Collection. Aggie, of course, is the gold. Aggie isn’t a color I enjoy wearing on its own, although I love the look of it in the bottle. I thought it mixed beautifully with Merida in this design. I’m looking forward to mixing it in with some other colors, too, as it water marbled really well. It would be pretty with a deep red or purple.

On Zoya’s website, Merida is described as “a brilliant, lush evergreen scattered holo”.  I have had this one sitting in my “to be worn” pile for quite some time. I have no idea why it took me this long to put it on, as I adored it immediately upon opening the box when it arrived. It is such a deep and beautiful color. It’s perfect for Fall, and I think it would be an amazingly gorgeous color going into Winter, too. Heck, this polish is so beautiful that it would be stunning any time of the year.

I can’t add much, other than to say this polish is pretty darn close to perfection. I’ve never considered myself much of a green lover, although I’ve come to enjoy the color more and more recently. This, though, is such a beautiful shade of green that I think it would win me over even if I didn’t like the color at all. I loved seeing this on my nails. It is rich and luxurious. And there’s sparkle — so much sparkle.


This is Superchic Lacquer, “In the Twinkling of an Eye”. On their website, Superchic describes this polish as, “an incredibly stunning, ethereal creation of vibrant multi-chrome color flakes with blended accents of color enhancing matte glitters and micro glitters having predominant shades of blue, purple & violet in a clear base formulation”. I’ve had this polish, literally, for months. It’s just taken me a while to get around to wearing it. I hesitated because of the glitter. I needn’t have worried, as the glitters in here are soft and luscious. It was a bit of a pain to remove, though.

This polish is lovely, lovely, lovely. It’s no secret that I’m a huge fan of the blues. It’s my absolute favorite color, and I have a hard time wearing any other color on my tips. Yes, even with all the polish I hoard. *ahem* With this one, I get so much blue payoff, it’s not even funny! There are multiple shades of my favorite color, and I love the way the matte glitters mix into the polish. That little touch of matte gives the polish a soft, rather ethereal look that fits the official description perfectly. As a full-on glitter polish, I was happily surprised to find this one got opaque on its own in two easy coats. I had, maybe, two teeny bald spots, but you couldn’t even see them in amongst all that glittery goodness. This one dried a bit lumpy, and it was thirsty for top coat. But it smoothed out nicely after a couple of coats of my favorite topper.


This is Colores de Carol, “Selu”. The Colores de Carol website describes this one as, “a berry red jelly base with micro pink holo glitter and a mix of gold glitter”. It’s part of their Fall 2016 Harvest Goddess collection, and is named after the ancient corn mother of the Pueblo Indians.

This is what I’m wearing on my nails right at this moment. And it is Marvelous. It was part of an order I received yesterday. I’m generally not much for reds. I tend to feel like they look too stark or bright on my nails, probably because my skin tone is so light that I could almost be invisible. However … As soon as I opened the box and got my first look at this one, I knew (KNEW!!) that it had to go on my nails. Right away. It is so pretty, it makes me want to scream and cry all at the same time. The red jelly is beautifully juicy. I love the squishy sort of appearance it has on my nails. And the glitters twinkle and float way down inside the polish. The whole effect is nothing short of magical. I am loving this one on my nails. It went on in two easy coats. In fact, the application was so easy and enjoyable that I almost didn’t want to be done with my manicure!

September Favorites

I can’t believe we are at the end of September already! I thought this month would be a long haul because of the start of school, but it has fairly flown by. One of these days, I am going to start expecting the months to go quickly, and then they will creep along.

I went back through my September posts, and these are the polishes that I loved the most. Not that I don’t love all my polishes, but these are the ones that really got me where I live.


Zoya, “Finley”. This is such a perfect purple. And the scattered glitter is beautifully amazing. As with the other polishes like this one, it is truly stunning. I wish Zoya would make this type of polish in every color!


OPI, “Make Light of the Situation” over OPI, “Chiffon My Mind”. I loved wearing this manicure. Loved it! The tone-on-tone appearance really let the glitters shine. I felt elegant and very feminine while I wore this one.


China Glaze, “Pearl Jammin'”. Ugh. This polish is LOVE. Seriously. It’s so similar to my beloved Dashboard Dreamer, but I think this one has a slightly better formula. It’s part of the China Glaze Fall 2016 Rebel Collection, which I adore. I ended up with several polishes from that collection; maybe I should do a post on them or something. Anyhow, this one is one of my favorites. I love the finish and the color tones of this polish. I think it would be beautiful on any skin tone, and the light airy look to it is stunning.


OPI, “Blue Chips”. As soon as I put this polish on my nails, I was like, “zOMGoodness! Where have you been my whole life, Polish? And why … WHY haven’t you been on my nails?” Yes. So much love for this one. The color is beautiful, and the holographic glitters are perfection.


Water marble with Zoya, “Merida” and “Aggie”. I know I just listed this one in my current post, but it was definitely a favorite manicure. This was my third water marble attempt, and I’m so happy with how the pattern came out. I also loved the combination of Merida and Aggie together. It felt very elegant and luxurious on my nails.


And, finally, there is “Selu” from Colores de Carol. Another from my current post, but I had to include it in my favorites from the month. This red is just too perfect and too good and too yummy. Yep. That’s all there is to it.

The Woodchuck

Late last school year, my daughter and I accidentally discovered a trio of “baby” woodchucks living at her school. I say “baby” because they weren’t fully grown, but they were old enough to be out on their own. They seemed to live in the grassy areas at the edges of the parking lots and around the soccer fields and tennis courts behind my daughter’s school. We usually go home that way at the end of the day, winding around through the back parking lot where the busses usually congregate, past the grassy medians. We would often see the woodchucks hanging out together in the grass and bushes on the edge of the parking lot or just behind the fence surrounding the soccer field. They were usually together, all three of them, so we thought they had come from the same litter. Whenever they would see us stopping to look at them, they would dive into the nearest burrow entrance. They had hidey-holes all over the place, and their burrow must have been a huge maze spreading under the ground.

Over the summer, my daughter and I would swing by the school from time to time to check up on these little guys. We started calling them “The Chuckles”, because they just didn’t seem large enough or grown enough to wear the title of Woodchuck. We watched them grow up, right before our eyes. For most of the summer, they were little and cute, scurrying for their hiding spots or hanging out munching on grass and flowers. And then, suddenly, they were HUGE. It seemed like it happened overnight. We stopped by to see if we could find them before we left for our family trip to Maine at the end of the summer. And then, just a couple of weeks later, school started. We saw one of The Chuckles at the end of that first day of school, and neither of us could believe how much the little guy (or girl) had grown.

The thing about The Chuckles is that they just kind of hung out and did their own thing. A school and its surrounding grounds would seem, in many ways, to be a less than ideal place for a wild critter to live. And yet, I suppose this is as close as one can get to “open space” in an overpopulated and overgrown urban area. The Chuckles never seemed to care much about the comings and goings of the people around them. And, in turn, most people didn’t pay any attention to The Chuckles. I suppose this worked in their favor. I liked that about The Chuckles. It seemed brave to me: this trio of little animals facing a huge world and not falling to pieces in the process. And, in a way, I think I identified with them. It was like they just wanted to live their lives, quietly and on their own terms. I tend to feel this way, too. A lot. Especially now, when it seems there are more people than ever pushing their noses into my business and shouting at me for attention or looking for their fifteen minutes in the spotlight. Mostly, I want a quiet life, and I want to be left alone. Maybe the woodchuck is my spirit animal or something. Or, maybe I romanticized their little existence.

Whatever the case, knowing The Chuckles existed and that they were just kind of hanging out and doing their thing even in the midst of the craziness of this place where we live … I don’t know how to explain it exactly, but it made me happy. It made me feel like, somehow, there was something still lovely and pure and kind of innocent left in the world. Well, if one could call a woodchuck “lovely”. Perhaps most people wouldn’t. They aren’t particularly attractive animals. They are a bit bumbly and ungainly. But they are also pretty darn cute. At least, I think so. And seeing The Chuckles at the end of the day always lifted my spirits.


Sadly, one of The Chuckles died on Monday. As I turned into the school parking lot, I saw his furry little body. I suppose he got caught out in the lot when the busses were leaving, and he probably zigged when he should have zagged. The busses must have run over him. I felt inexplicably sad, as if I had lost a little part of myself. As I sat in the car and waited for my daughter to come out of school, I found there were tears running down my cheeks. I could not stop crying. It’s so silly, isn’t it? I mean, it was just a woodchuck. There are at least dozens of them running around here, and, possibly, hundreds (or more) in the state where I live.

In a way, though, my instincts were right. I did lose a bit of myself. Somehow, I had been able to forget about the cruelty of life for a little bit. Somehow, just seeing one of those little guys bumbling along had given my faith in the universe a refreshing bump-up. Maybe it was silly. Maybe it didn’t make any sense. It was a small thing: a tiny little joy in the midst of a world that often seems … well, joyless. And now, that is gone.

RIP, little Chuckle. You lived your life to the fullest and did things your way. I hope you’re out there, somewhere, chucking wood in the Blue Beyond. You made my world a little brighter, and you will be missed.