Three Years Ago

January 10, 2016…three years ago I settled in my recliner to write my first blog post. Back then I didn’t know what to expect or if anyone would even be interested in reading it. It was the first time in a very long while that I put caution to the wind and really took a chance. Those fleeting moments of filling the page with words felt liberating. There…I had done it. I listened to my heart and invested in the possibilities. It felt like I had unleashed a woman who had hidden within me for ages, not only a married working mom, but a writer who had copious words and stories to share. This passion has always lived within me, bubbling up finally. I thought maybe no one would care. Maybe someone would. I simply trusted myself and my readers and put it out there.

Since then I’ve learned that not everyone in your life will pay attention or care. Some joke about my blog like it’s a stupid thing or that its funny. That’s okay! But some have been interested and have encouraged me along the way! They signed up for my email! They read now and then and comment, sharing in my experiences in life. Whether you are my family of friends or ones who have stumbled upon my site, it doesn’t matter. What matters to me is that you care, that you support me as I travel this special journey. I’m eternally grateful for your support, your love and friendship.

As I continue this journey and dream of compiling my penned posts, I am considering taking writing classes to learn more. I hope you all will stay connected with me. I wish you all peace, joy and love as you start this new year.

All My Best,

Heart and Soul ❤️

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A January To Do List

If you live in the wintry Northeast of the United States, you know that many January activities involve the cold, snow or inside venues. I compiled a little to do list for you New Englanders to try this month. If you live elsewhere ask yourself if any of these ideas would work for you.

Credits to Janet Lee Logan & Princess Sassy Pants & Co. Thank you.
  • Go sledding with your family and friends! We have a long Tobaggon that I won at work many years ago. It can hold two or three bodies and goes like the wind!
  • Host a Saturday lunch for friends. I’m hosting my two friends Laurie and Michelle in a couple of weeks. Serve hot or cold sandwiches or homemade soup. Have tea, coffee or hot beverages available.
  • Organize desk drawers or cluttered countertops. It’s easier now while the weather is colder outside. Once spring comes, you’re going to want to be outside instead.
  • Organize your printed photographs or digital thumbprints. Label folders such as Christmas 2018 or Summer 2018.
  • Take an afternoon hike in the woods. Tom and I hiked about a mile to check on his game camera and feed the local deer. It was simply magical with snow falling while we were in the midst of the stand of trees. Animal tracks spiraled throughout the woods like a crazy maze.

  • Build a cozy fire in the stove or fireplace and cuddle up nearby. Watch a good movie, Mr. Church on Netflix. It’s a heartwarming story of a mother and daughter who have a cook who becomes part of the family. Read a good book! Right now I’m reading The Divide by Nicholas Evans about a family facing a tragic loss of their daughter and the search to find out what happened to her.

I hope you all enjoy the month of January and everything that comes with it!

All My Best,

Heart and Soul ❤️

Netflix Suggestions Part II

We are fortunate to spend under $50 a month on television entertainment. Years ago we were fortunate enough to have our employer pay for our satellite tv. Back then cable wasn’t available in our neck of the woods and that was the best you had. Now many tv watchers are rethinking the high cost of cable and satellite services and are resorting to downstreaming apps such as Netflix, Hulu and Amazon Prime to name a few. We have those three services as well as YouTube available on our PlayStation console. I’m happy to report my avid tv watching husband is completely satisfied with all the shows, something that worried me in the beginning.

Here are a few Netflix suggestions that are downstreaming currently.

Wonder ( this is on the dvd plan but also available on Amazon’s Prime)

A sentimental family film featuring Julia Roberts and Owen Wilson. It’s about fifth grade Auggie who has facial deformities and his loving family who supports him throughout. It’s based on the book and years ago I read it in school with fourth graders.

The Holiday Calendar

This movie is about a motivated photographer who is gifted a magical advent calendar. The calendar could lead her right to love. It’s a sweet holiday story with that Hallmark feel.

El Camino Christmas

This movie drew me in and I don’t usually like robberies or violent movies. I’m not sure if it was the acting and their interesting characters or bonds that are formed…all I know is that it was a good movie and very entertaining!

Julie & Julia

An oldie from 2009 but a great movie. It is about a woman who cooks up all of Julia Child’s recipes. Meryl Streep is fabulous in this! I would recommend this to you if you love to cook!

Big Miracle 

This flick is also an oldie from 2010 starring Drew Barrymore. She is a reporter who writes about stranded whales in the Article Circle. Based on true events, the US and USSR work on rescuing the whales. A good family movie!

This time of year I get my Christmas movies out to compliment Netflix. Every weekend and some week nights I choose one to watch in front of our Christmas tree. Yesterday I chose A Christmas Carol with George C. Scott. I remember long ago as a teenager watching it and loving his acting. It’s a calming way to indulge in a hot cup of coffee in my comfy armchair. Within the next few weeks I’ll view It’s a Wonderful Life, Home Alone and I’ll Be Home for Christmas. 

What movies do you watch this time of year?Are you also bypassing cable tv and opting for downstreaming apps? 

All My Best,

Heart and Soul

Netflix Suggestions Part I

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I don’t know about you, but this time of year I love watching Netflix at night and on weekends! There’s less to do outside with chilly temperatures and the gardens at rest, blessing me with ample reading and viewing time. My blogging friend Rhonda inspired this post recently with her question what’s good to watch on Netflix? Here’s my list…I hope you can find what you would like and enjoy!

 

Christmas in the Smokies

A young ambitious woman tries to save her family’s farm and wrestles with thoughts of her ex boyfriend as he arrives back in town. A heart- warming story set in the Smokey Mountains.

 

Dear Santa

Crystal finds a lost letter written to Santa by a young girl hoping for a new wife for her daddy. Another heart- warming story to enjoy.

 

A Holiday Engagement

Can you tell that I love Hallmark type of movies? My husband is a good sport and watches some with me. This movie is about a woman who fakes having a fiancé to bring home for Christmas. It’s a funny film and enjoyable to watch the story unfold.

 

Coffee Shop

A small town coffee shop owner and an ambitious writer from New York meet and you have to watch to see what happens.

 

Sixteen Candles

Young Samantha is feeling unimportant as her sister’s wedding overshadows her sixteenth birthday. I watched this flick in the 80’s growing up and still enjoy it with many laughs! It’s a funny and cute movie of her trials over her birthday and crush on a high school hunk.

 

National Treasure

A 2004 movie starring Nicholas Cage, Harvey Keitel, Diane Kruger and Jon Voight. It’s about a historian who discovers clues to hidden treasure and the Declaration of Independence is involved. How hard can it be stealing the historic document to continue his quest? This is a fast paced adventure with a bit of history involved. It was my oldest son’s favorite movie from school and we have the dvd. Currently it is trending on Netflix.

Pirates of the Caribbean At World’s End

Another movie installment of Johnny Depp’s interesting character Jack Sparrow. It’s fun and filled with adventure and Orlando Bloom appears once again!

An Unfinished Life

A beautiful film starring Robert Redford, Jennifer Lopez and Morgan Freeman. It’s about a woman confronting her past. Set in the country on a farm with a nice story and scenic views. A must to watch!

 

A Beautiful Mind

I watched this years ago at the movie theater with Mrs. Geneen,  her sister Lois  and niece. It’s based on a true story of a brilliant mathematician  who suffers from schizophrenia. I watched most of the movie not realizing this was so. A great story and Russell Crowe delivers an outstanding performance!

 

God Knows Where I Am

A documentary based on Linda Bishop’s slipping through the cracks of the mental health system. Based in my home state of New Hampshire, Linda was released from a mental health hospital and she found an old abandoned farmhouse to live in. Living in secret and surviving on picked apples and rain water, Linda kept a journal of the solitary days hiding. It’s an eerie insight into mental illness and read with so much expression by actress Lori Singer. At the end of this film it shows from route 93 the farmhouse and barn, taking me aback!💜I know exactly where it is and have passed it hundreds of times back from trips to Concord. It’s about an hour and a half from us. 

 

 

All My Best,

Heart and Soul

 

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Boston Red Sox Win!

Growing up Red Sox games were always on the television in the Doyle house. My dad and brother Del would root them on, many times hooting and hollering  when they hit a home run or won a game. Many times there was disappointment in the air as they would get close to the Champoinship but drastically lose. There was talk of Babe Ruth’s curse as the losses built up. Even so, Sox players such as Yaz, Carlton Fisk and Jim Rice gave it their all.

 

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My picture of Mookie Betts, who hit a blasting homer in last night.

 

As an adult I watched the baseball games, handed down in excitement from my dad. As my son Dylan grew, his interest in baseball was sparked and he also became a loyal fan. His idols were David Ortiz, Manny Ramirez, Pedro Martinez and Nomar Garciaparra.

 

 

 

Tom and I took him to Fenway for his first game when he was in third grade. He thought it was the best leaving school a little early for the three hour trip there. That game Manny hit a giant homer over the green monster, a huge wall that Fenway is infamous for. A great memory for us all!

 

 

 

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In recent years we haven’t watched the Red Sox due to a busy life and we don’t get the channels on tv. Even so I watch the scores and feel that disappointment every year they don’t make it.

 

 

 

This year when I heard the team was having a stellar year, I started getting excited and adrenalinized. Once they earned the spot in the World Series, I downloaded a free trial of FuboTV. That way we could watch the games on our iPad and keep track of their progress. Last nights game was filled with homers and great pitching. The players brought me back to 2004, when that historic team won it all and broke the Babe Ruth curse. ( was there really a curse, though?) This win was just as sweet for the team and the fans.

 

 

This morning I’m proud as heck to be a Boston Red Sox fan and live in New England, for they represent our region. My son Dylan messaged me and said, “ They did it, mom!” bringing back memories of their past wins while we watched in anticipation.

 

So with this post I congratulate the hard working young team. I want to give credit to the Los Angeles Dodgers for playing feisty and hard. It just wasn’t enough nor their time.

This girl will always be a Boston Red Sox fan if they win or lose. It’s a family thing.

All My Best,

Heart and Soul ⚾️⚾️⚾️⚾️

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A Purpose in Life

 

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Questions to ask yourself:

What is your purpose for being in your life?

Why are you here?

What is it you wish to accomplish before you leave?

 

My purpose in most of my married life has been raising good kids and making my husband happy. I focused on those things more than anything else. Now, years later, I must reinvent myself and discover who I am other than being a mother and wife. Finding happiness and fulfillment totally in my husband is too much pressure on him. We are happy together and best friends. But…I realize that I must do much of my inner work myself, love myself and move forward with visions of what I want to do and what my purpose on earth is.

 

It’s hard work starting from scratch with little tools to help. It’s probably one of the hardest things that I ever will do! Unfortunately I’ve built a life of dependency, hurt feelings and low self esteem. It’s been my security blanket and now I feel that I must tear it off, throw it aside and reinvent my life without it, unclothed. It’s my choice to plow forward and get to know who I really am. 

 

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I know I am here for a reason but I’m not sure what that is. Other than raising great boys and building a beautiful family .Maybe writing comes into play in some form? Maybe giving and volunteering? It make time for me to discover what I will do with my life from now on but that’s okay because I have time.

What do I want to accomplish?

 

Spreading love, kindness, being understanding

 

Being self confident

 

Loving my family and friends

 

Writing

 

Organizing our house

 

Gardening and creating beautiful gardens in our yard

 

Walking, hiking, exercising 

 

Baking for Pals ( a school parents group)

 

Giving to others

 

I think there are times in ones life when priorities shift and directions change. I’m at a time in my life when my children are grown and settling in just fine. My motherly role remains but has taken a back seat. Lately I feel similar to the twenty- year-old me, a young woman with a needed direction and focus. Here I am at the age of 49 and those feelings are back. I plan on using them to my advantage to learn who I am and what I want to do. How exciting it is…to live with a fresh outlook and forward vision. 

 

What is your life purpose? Have you always known? Did something trigger your purpose that changed your life?  If you have a similar experience I would love to hear your story!

All My Best,

Heart and Soul ❤️

A Big Catch

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Dylan’s catch a few years ago

 

img_1939My husband and son went night fishing a few weeks ago. They have always ventured out late, when the air is still and the fish bite. For years I’ve worried as they arrived home in the dark depths of night. I finally got to the point of being happy for them without worrying. A little spoken prayer and huge amounts of faith have helped me.

 

 

This proud smile tells it all. What a catch! A precious time for father and son.

 

All My Best,

Heart and Soul❤️

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