Thursday, June 30, 2016

A Spirit of Gratitude: June 30

That's a wrap on June y'all!  And I can't believe how quickly it flew by!  (Is it just me, or do I say that a lot!?) It was such a GOOD month though!  A trip to New York, the male offspring's graduation, cookouts, and more.  I hope the rest of the summer continues to be packed with fun.

I Am Thankful For:
Walks at the park
Applying for a passport
Air conditioning!
Staying up late to watch the season finale
Rainy afternoons
Afternoon rest time
Cool mornings
Ice cream with fresh strawberries

Wednesday, June 29, 2016

The Big Apple is: A Great Place to Start

Here we go y'all!  Time to get into the nitty gritty of our day in New York City.

We did SO much in just one day!!  Being our first trip to the city, and having only one day for sight seeing - there were many things we wanted to be sure we saw.  Just to be able to say we had at least seen it.  Hopefully, soon we will go back and spend more time exploring landmarks, visiting museums, seeing a show, etc.

I am not exaggerating when I say we covered a LOT of ground.  Because there's just so much, I feel compelled to break it up into bite sized pieces for blogs sake.  So...  let's get started!

The morning was cloudy, with the promise of clearing into a beautiful day, as we caught an early train from Ronkonkoma to Penn Station.  As soon as we emerged from the station, we were able to check one thing off our sightseeing wish list - Madison Square Garden.  From there it was an easy stroll over to the Empire State Building, passing THE Macy's (as we having been referring to it) along the way.

We got ourselves acclimated to city traffic habits by walking north along 5th Avenue. Along the way I paused outside the New York City Public Library.  Yes, I wanted to go in.  No, we did not.

We turned off 5th Avenue just south of St Patrick's Cathedral; heading west toward Rockefeller Plaza.

I have to say, it was smaller than I thought it would be.  And of course, being the beginning of June - no ice skating.  (duh...)

From there, we walked around 30 Rock, down past Radio City Music Hall toward Central Park.

I loved the park!  It was clean, green, and very pretty.  A little piece of country right there. It was easy to forget you're in the city until you look up just past the treetops and see all those buildings poking up everywhere!

I also marked off what I considered a touristy New York "must experience" thing - I got a big ol' pretzel from a guy with a cart.

I also wanted to be brave and get a sidewalk cart hot dog, but that one will have to wait until our next visit.

We emerged from Central Park at Columbus Circle.  (Yes, right there at Trump International Hotel and Tower - if you're interested)   Then it was time to walk down Broadway to Times Square.

And that's where we'll pick up in the next post...

by the way: my youngest sister tried to convince me to entitle this "Beckey bites the Big Apple".  So, you're welcome for not going that route.  

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Tuesday, June 28, 2016

5 Reasons Adult Colouring Books Could Improve Your Life

Adult colouring books are the latest craze. Once exclusively the domain of young children, more adults are getting creative with colouring books that help them de-stress and improve concentration. Here are 5 reasons adult colouring books could improve your life

1. De-stress
Studies show that adult colouring books can help you to de-stress. Colouring in intricate designs on paper can help you relax after a long day at work and provide you with some much-needed relief. These books are available with various designs that provide a calming influence when you need it most. You'll feel more relaxed and refreshed!

2. Improve concentration
Research also shows that colouring in books for adults
can improve your concentration and help you focus. If you feel like your brain is racing or you have too much running through your head, an adult colouring book can provide you with a few minutes to unwind after a particularly stressful period in your life.

3. Pass your time
If you've got a long train or plane journey coming up, colouring in can provide you with a relaxing pass time. You'll be able to get creative and use an array of colouring pencils to complete elaborate designs.

4. Provides an alternative from consumer electronics
Studies suggest that consumer electronics like computers and smart phones can have a negative effect on your body. Not only can they have an effect on the quality of sleep you receive every night, but frequently using electronics, especially late at night, can cause your stress levels to skyrocket. There is an alternative. Swap electronic products for colouring books instead to improve your sleep and relax your mind. You'll feel less stressed in no time at all!

5. Improve creativity
Need some creativity in your life? Colouring in can help! Even if you're not the best artist, you'll be able to colour in different designs and create dynamic, eye-catching illustrations. You can even cut out and frame your favourite designs!

*This is a sponsored post.  Compensation was provided by and the post contains links to their website. Opinions expressed here may not be those of  My Really Real Reality or the blog owner.

Monday, June 27, 2016

Currently... Some Changes

It's time for some change, y'all!  I'm going to be turning my Currently posts into a twice-a-month thing.  Doing it every week, things can get a little redundant.  And redundant = boring. So from now on the post will be appearing on the first Monday of each month, and the Monday right about the middle of the month.  I'm hoping this will keep things a little fresher.  (fresher?  more fresh? *shrugs*)

In other news...

  • The last installments about my trip to New York will be coming up later this week and/or the first of next week.  Be warned... they will be picture heavy! 
  • I've got some changes coming to the look of the blog also.  It's time to update the "About" page, and give the overall appearance a little update.
  • I'm anticipating being able to share some big news with y'all soon.  Another trip might be in the works.  Even bigger than New York!  Updates will be available as soon as I have some concrete information to share.  

I would love to know what each of YOU would like to see more (or less) of on the blog.  Do you have questions for me?  A topic you would like to see me post about in the future?  PLEASE share any ideas or thoughts in the comments!!

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Friday, June 24, 2016

Feeling Better On Long Island

When we last left the tale of my adventures in New York, I was slowly recovering from a horrific stomach ailment.  Fortunately things improved from there.

Thursday morning found me feeling much better.  Not exactly my best, but compared to the day before - MUCH better!

The Man of the House was scheduled to spend all day at a local business, so I was on my own for entertainment.  After dropping him off, I decided to spend a relaxing morning at the hotel.  Take a long shower.  Watch some tv.  Enjoy the quiet.  Then it was off to meet him and one of his customers for lunch.

The afternoon was made for exploring Sayville.  I was completely charmed by this little town!  Wide quiet streets.  A cute little main street area full of mostly local shops and boutiques.  I strolled through town, did some window shopping, got chatted up by a couple of locals, petted a couple of dogs, grabbed a coffee, and even found a yarn shop. (Which, in my opinion, is always an indicator of a good day)

Sadly, my stomach started hurting again, and since I had no desire to find myself vomiting on the sidewalks of Sayville - I decided it was best to go take a nap until time to pick up the man.

On Friday, the Man of the House was finished with work obligations by lunch time and we were ready to do a little exploring.  We found a local bagel shop/deli for lunch and hen hopped in the car to cruse around Long Island.  After passing a sign saying we were only about 29 miles from Amityville - our destination was decided!

Despite it's creepy reputation due to the horror book and movies - we found Amityville to be quite beautifu!  Gorgeous homes. Plenty of waterfront property.  Another charming little Long Island town. (I seem to find myself using the word "charming" a lot when talking about Long Island.  What's that about?)  And yes...  we did find THE house and drove by, because sometimes we're big nerds like that.

After that we took the back roads to Sayville and back to Ronkonkoma.  It was another early night because Saturday was scheduled for our big day in New York City!  We'll talk about that next time...

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Thursday, June 23, 2016

A Spirit of Gratitude: June 23

It's been a good week here.  Quiet.  But good.  Which is just what I needed.  I've been trying to catch up on some house work.  And trying out  a new routine for work.  It's been going pretty well.  Honestly, I can't complain much.  But I certainly do have plenty to give thanks about this week!

Going to church with my dad
Father's Day breakfast
Free garlic knots on Father's Day
Finding the perfect shirt for the Man of the House
The grandbaby playing outside

Yummy fresh peaches
Being married to an amazing man
Cleaning up and rearranging
The female offspring offering me a cup of tea
A morning visitor in the front yard

The male offspring treating me to lunch
The grand baby asking me to crochet something for him

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Tuesday, June 21, 2016

When the Big Apple Bites Back

A couple of weeks ago the Man of the House and I headed north for several days on Long Island.  It was a business trip for him.  I got to tag along for a little sightseeing and we stayed an extra day to tour New York City.

I want to tell y'all what a great trip it was.  And we'll get to that.  In another post.  Unfortunately, it didn't start off as well as one would hope.  No, wait ... I'm getting ahead of myself.  Let me back up.  It started out just fine. Before taking a sharp downhill turn.

We left bright and early on a Tuesday morning.  Pre-bright and early, really.  It was a 5:30am flight.  Our local airport suggested arriving 2 hours before your flight, so we were there just after 3:30am.  Of course, what they didn't mention was that airport personnel such as airlines and TSA agents don't arrive until 4:00.  Which would have been nice to know, since that would have meant an extra 30 minutes of sleep.  But, we were first in line to check in and go through security, so it's all good.

Flights went smoothly and we landed at JFK before 10:00.  Had our rental car and were making our way through the insanity that is Queens traffic by 11:00. (Seriously, that was cra-zy!  And it wasn't even rush hour!)  Fortunately, once we got past Jamaica it opened up and we had smooth sailing the rest of the way.

Ever heard of Ronkonkoma,  NY?  Me neither.  Not before this Spring.  The best I can tell you is that if you take a map of Long Island and point smack dab in the middle - that's about where it is.  (I might be off a little... please don't hate on the little southern gal Long Islanders.)

We had a whole afternoon in front of us to do whatever we wanted.  But after being up to get to the airport at 3:30, all we really wanted to do was take a nap.  And after grabbing some lunch, that's just what we did!

Once we caught up on a little sleep, we drove over to Sayville. Found a local seafood place for dinner and did a little exploring.

It was an early night, as we were driving out to Orient Point in the morning to catch the ferry across Long Island Sound to Connecticut.

(Hang on... this is where things get ugly)

I woke Wednesday morning with a bad headache.  That's an understatement of epic proportions.  It was terrible.  Horrible.  Excruciatingly painful.  But I tried to be logical and think positive.  I had taken two flights the day before with altitude and pressure changes wrecking havoc on my sinuses.  I was probably dehydrated.

Take a shower, I thought.  You'll feel better after that, I thought.  I.  Was.  Wrong.  After the shower my head still hurt.  And then the stomach pains began.  I kept trying to power through. The stomach pains got worse.

I kept telling myself it would pass.  Until about 15 minutes before we had to leave.  When I found myself knealing in a hotel bathroom being violently sick to my stomach.  That's when I accepted that I was not going to Connecticut that day.  You know how after you vomit you usually feel better - at least for a little while?  Nope.  Not even a little.

I felt bad that I had to stay behind.  The Man of the House felt bad, because he had to leave me there.   But he had appointments scheduled.  (This was his business trip, remember?)  So, he went.  But not before going down to buy me a couple of bottles of ginger ale.  And after hours of alternating sleeping curled up in a fetal position and vomiting; I did start to feel a little better in the early afternoon.

And that's why this was my view for most of my first day in New York...

Things did improve quickly and the rest of the trip was better.  But we'll get to that in the next post...

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Monday, June 20, 2016

Currently... catching up

Alright y'all.  I think I'm finally getting a handle on things and getting back to my usual self.  (Not that that couldn't use a little improvement as well, but one thing at a time...)  I've got some good stuff planned in the next couple of weeks.  Updates from the trip to New York.  A retrospective on the male offspring's graduation. Sharing a revelation I recently experienced.  Updates on some previous posts.  I can already tell that y'all are excited.  But before we get ahead of ourselves, let's pause and take a look at where we're at

Reading:  Still reading The Princes in the Tower.  It's pretty good; but so far it's mostly just a refresher course on a bunch of information I already knew due to my small obsession with interest in the Cousin's War and all things Tudor.

Eating:  Ribs.  So very, many ribs!  And don't think for one single minute that I'm complaining about that.  The Man of the House grilled some ribs low and slow for Memorial Day.  This week the female offspring's fella grilled some ribs.  I'm a gal who has a hard time saying no to just about anything that has been cooked outdoor.

Making:  A bath puff for the grandbaby.  He saw me making one for an order and said he needed one.  And how can I refuse that cutie?  Also working on two new baby blankets/lapghan ideas for the shop.

Enjoying:  Pretty much everything about my life right now!

Anticipating:  The raspberries ripening so they can be picked.

Thinking about:  More and more new items for Queen B's Busy Work.  Now I just need time to work on them.

Feeling:  A little embarrassed that I wrote "you're" in last week's post, when it should have read "your".  Be honest...  how many of you are grammer police and were burdened with the effort of not calling me out on that one?

What are your "currently" highlights?  Share them in the comments!

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Thursday, June 16, 2016

A Spirit of Gratitude: June 16

This week has just felt, well - off.  Still struggling to get into a summer routine.  Trying to get used to having the male offspring home all day, while he tries to make his own plans for this summer as well as his future.  It has been hotter than usual for June.  Too hot if you ask me. And to top it all off, I now dread turning on the TV or computer for fear of more terrible, sad news.

But despite all this, I still find plenty to be grateful for as I go through my days...

I Am Thankful For:

High school graduation

Family cookout
New phone
Completed orders

Picking blueberries
Making those blueberries into pancakes
And putting them on vanilla ice cream
Snail mail from a friend

What are you thankful for this week?

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Monday, June 13, 2016

Currently... Monday June 13

Just like that... June is getting away from me.  It was the end of May.  I looked up, and here it is, almost the middle of June! In my defense, the past two weeks have been crazy.  We celebrated the male offspring's birthday, then Memorial Day and the next day the Man of the House and I left at the crack of dawn for 6 days on Long Island.  We arrived back home for he male offspring's graduation week - which means awards ceremonies to attend, planning to be done, graduation and a family cookout.  So... yeh.  Now that I have a moment to stop and catch my breath, I feel as if I went through a sort of time warp.  Which brings us to where I am right now.

Reading:  Just finished by Fortunate Son Walter Mosley and started The Princes in the Tower by Alison Weir.  The first was quite depressing, and not at all what I was in the mood for at the time.  Although, I suppose a book about the mysterious disappearance of the boy King Edward V and his younger brother from the Tower of London isn't exactly a cheerful story either.  Anyone got any suggestions for a feel good novel or two?  I think I'm due for one of those next!

Eating:  Between traveling and graduation festivities, I am so far off track right now!  Too many sweet things, salty things, and sodas.  Time to get straightened out.  I think I see a trip to the Farmer's Market in my near future.

Working on:  Getting back into some sort of routine after the past couple of weeks.

Enjoying:  The idea of having two pretty much grown kids!   It is bittersweet not having little ones anymore.  But that's why God made grand babies!

Anticipating:  Short term - going to pick blueberries at my dad's the house.  Long term - the next season of our lives and every bit of potential it holds!

Thinking about:  How to keep the grand baby entertained this summer while still getting some work done.

Feeling:  Right now, I am just feeling exhausted.  Give me a few more days to get caught up and get all the processed sugars out of my system and we'll see where things stand at that point.

What are you're "currentlys" ?  Share in the comments!

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Friday, June 3, 2016

June Goals and Intentions

May was a mixed bag.  I had a lot of trouble sticking to my intention of Focus.  It seemed as if something was always coming up to distract me or throw a wrench into the plans.

I did slightly better with my goals.  I didn't get to bed or wake up as early as 7 had hoped.  But it was earlier than I had been doing; so it's all good,  I mailed out graduation announcements for the male offspring.  Made some time for fun with the Man of the House.  Didn't do as much reading as I would have liked.  But I did finish two books and start a third.

My intention for this month is Explore.  This means being open to new experiences.  Saying yes to opportunities that may scare me a little.  Stepping outside my comfort zone.

It also means exploring my faith.  Digging deeper.  Relying less on devotionals and  what others may believe to listen to my own heart and the small voice of the Spirit as I read Scripture each day.

My goals for June:

1)  Read more:  When I find myself with few free moments during the day, I have fallen into a habit of checking on my Etsy shop or browsing Pinterest (which usually ends up lasting longer than intended).  This month my goal is to reach first for whatever book I am reading instead.

2)  Spend time outside each day:  (if it's not raining) This might be going out on the porch while I have my morning quiet time, sitting outside to read or crochet, going for a hike or or taking a short walk.  It doesn't matter what shape it takes - the point is a little fresh air and sunshine,

3)  Organize yarn stash:  I want to get this organized by color and select some for a stash buster sale.  This will go a long way toward getting my office back under control.

What are your goals for the month of June?

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Thursday, June 2, 2016

A Spirit of Gratitude - June 2

Man of the House planting the garden
The smell of clean laundry
Fresh peaches
A yummy new recipe
An afternoon date with the Man of the House
The grand baby telling knock-knock jokes
Making travel plans
The male offspring's 18th birthday
Chocolate birthday cake
A family game of Uno
Memorial Day
Sending out graduation announcements

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Wednesday, June 1, 2016

Currently... June of 2016

Well, here we are y'all.  June has arrived.  School is winding down and summer will officially start in the blink if an eye. But, before all the festivities start let's pause to take a look at where we are right now.

 Reading:  Princesses Behaving Badly  by Linda Rodriguez McRobbie.  Interesting,  but a little dry.

Eating:  A lot of fresh fruit.  And looking forward to even more as the fruits of summer come into season! It shouldn't be too long before my dad's blueberries are ready for picking.  And after that our raspberries will start coming in.  Not to mention all the local peaches and such.  Yummy!

Working on:  Some new ideas for my Etsy shop.  Now I just have to find time to start producing some of these ideas.

Enjoying:  Good Earth Sweet and Spicy Tea  My youngest sister introduced me to this delight back at Christmas time, and I am completely hooked.  I enjoy at least one cup every day!

Anticipating:  A trip to Long Island, Connecticut, and New York City! Look out New England, this southern gal is gonna be heading your way pretty soon. I hope you are prepared.

Thinking:  About the future.  So many changes are coming.  Some are for sure.  Some are possibilities.

Feeling:  A lot of excitement.  A little nervous.  Constantly reminding myself that it's all in God's hands and one way or another everything works out exactly the way it's supposed to be.

Share what you're currently up to in the comments...

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