The Best Kept Secret — Day 35 Post Blog Challenge

the secret

The Best Kept Secret

Remember when you were growing up and someone told you a secret and told you not to tell anyone else? It was the hardest thing to do for me, that’s for sure. But I did it to respect the promise I made.

But there are some secrets meant to be shared for a reason. To help others to reap the blessings and rewards that might have come your way and how it all came to pass. Sharing with others, in hopes that this vast amount of information will be passed forward continually to as many people as possible to help to possibly improve their lives in even the slightest way.

For many of us the Blog Challenge that we participated in was just that. The founder and facilitator of the challenge shared many of his best kept secrets so that we can share the same fruits of our labor as he has.

The Christian Bible has many of the same aspects of God’s secrets that he shares with his people to eventually achieve everlasting life.

But in this instance; I want to share one of my best kept secrets; The Secret; a book of ‘secrets’ written by Rhonda Byrne.


It is based on the law of attraction and claims that positive thinking can create life-changing results such as increased happiness, health, and wealth.

I know it sounds like all of that positive thinking stuff is lot of hogwash with no foundation and you can’t survive in life just thinking positive through everything……but you can…..and I’ve lived it for many years.

It’s not just the old adage of ‘just think positive’ and everything will work out….that’s not it at all. It’s a learned way of thinking, acting, and feeling about everything.

Let me explain further.

I bought the audio book of the Book “The Secret” by Rhonda Byrne and listened to it as often as I could over and over…..because at the point that I was in my life; I was almost forced to do something different because everything that I was doing just wasn’t working out for me.

The book begins by introducing and explaining the mechanisms of the law of attraction, and then describes historical examples of its application and great men and women in history who are claimed to have harnessed its power.

It also describes the law as accounting for a magnetic power that is emitted through one’s thoughts. The power of thoughts is likened to the power in a transmission tower; so to speak, which sends out a frequency to the universe and then returns the same frequency in a physical or elemental form.

Next, a three-step creative process for making dreams manifest is introduced: ask, believe, and receive. This creative process is based on a quote from the Bible: “And all things, whatsoever ye shall ask in prayer, believing, ye shall receive.” (Matthew 21:22)

“One of the most powerful uses of gratitude
can be incorporated in the Creative Process
to turbo-charge what you want.”

The ‘Secret’ highlights gratitude and visualization as the two most powerful processes to help make one’s desires manifest. It claims that being grateful both lifts your frequency higher and affirms that you believe you will receive your desire.

Visualization is said to help focus the mind to send out the clearest message to the universe. Several techniques are given for the visualization process, as well as examples of people claimed to have used visualization successfully to make their dreams and desires manifest.

I have a vision board with photos of things I want to achieve…that I look at every day. And writing this blog is one of the photos depicting one of my desires to write.

dream board

The subsequent chapters describe how to use the law of attraction specifically in the areas of wealth, relationships, and health. The book provides examples and ways to use the law of attraction for each. The final chapters offer a more spiritual perspective on the law of attraction, and how it relates to one’s life and the world.

Here is a very powerful excerpt from the book – Please listen…it could change your life!

So in summary; this book basically deals with the Law of Attraction and how to use it in your life.

While the Law of Attraction is getting quite a bit of good and controversial publicity these days, the concept has been around for centuries and has been known (and used successfully) by great minds throughout history.

The Secret puts forward several ideas that are surprising, exciting, and perhaps controversial, such as:

If you focus your attention on achieving a goal and believe not only that you can do it, but that you already have done it, you can achieve virtually any goal you set your mind to.

If you focus on what you don’t want, you are inadvertently drawing that into your life.

For example, if you constantly ruminate on what is stressing you, you’ll actually draw more of those situations (and accompanying stressed feelings) into your life. Instead, the trick is to focus on what you do want in your life, and you’ll get more of that.

Another example: Think of a time when you were in a hurry and so frustrated at all the red lights you were having to stop for. The more frustrated you became; the more people were cutting in front of you and you were becoming later and later, etc etc..on and on…..Think of a way that you can change the negative to a positive in this instance. Think GREEN….and think about how those people cutting in front of you could be having a bad day too….and ease your stress…You know as well as I do you can’t CHANGE those lights….or the reactions of the other drivers…you can only change your way of thinking. And then watch positive things come your way. It’s as simple as that. It takes time to use these techniques. But it’s worth the time; it’s worth your life!

The Law of Attraction, the principle that you attract whatever you focus your energy on (good or bad), works with relationships, possessions, goals, and anything else you are able to focus on — even your own health.

All I can say; from my own personal experiences, is that it has completely and unequivocally worked in many instances of my life’s ups and downs. It has come to be a learned phenomenon. After all; we did learn in school in algebra that a positive plus a positive equals a positive; and a negative plus negative equals a negative.



We have no problem working those algebraic equations into our every day lives wherever they may fit in…so use those same equations within your mental, physical and emotional attitude throughout your daily lives and reap the fruits of your labor.

Just give it a try! You’ll “love” it.


Catch a Falling Star — Day 34 — Post Blog Challenge


This song woke me up in the middle of the night and I knew I had to write about it.

Pero Como recorded this song in 1957 before I was even the apple of my father’s eye. But I remember hearing it many times while growing up.

Here are the sing-along lyrics along with the audio; for your listening pleasures….

Catch a falling star and put it in your pocket
Never let it fade away
Catch a falling star and put it in your pocket
Save it for a rainy day

For love may come and tap you on the shoulder some starless night
Just in case you feel you want to hold her
You’ll have a pocketful of starlight
Catch a falling star and put it in your pocket
Never let it fade away
Catch a falling star and put it in your pocket
Save it for a rainy day

For love may come and tap you on the shoulder some starless night
Just in case you feel you want to hold her
You’ll have a pocketful of starlight …Pocketful of starlight, hm,hm,hm,hm,hm,hm

Catch a falling star and put it in your pocket
Never let it fade away
Catch a falling star and put it in your pocket
Save it for a rainy day
Save it for a rainy, save it for a rainy, rainy, rainy, day

For when your troubles start multiplyin’ and they just might
It’s easy to forget them without tryin’
With just a pocketful of starlight
Catch a falling star and put it in your pocket
Never let it fade away
Catch a falling star and put it in your pocket

Save it for a rainy day
Save it for a rainy day)
Save it for a rainy day

So basically what we have here is a falling star or a shooting star that crosses the sky very very quickly. And in essence for us to “catch the falling star” means one must seize an opportunity as soon as it arises and not wait any longer because it will be too late.

Which I felt it very appropriate to write about in this stage of my writing along with the Blog Challenge that I just recently participated in.

I exercised a lot of personal thought to getting this message across but not a lot of physical energy because I don’t think it really needs much effort – the words speak for themselves.

Take the words and apply them to your own life. These very words’ hidden message would generally mean using opportunities when they come your way and consider it the true and proper timing. Remember, you can’t catch a star when it’s in the sky. So, we should not miss it when it falls back to the earth!

We should catch the luck and all that comes with it. Most of us were taught as children to say a wish when we see a ‘shooting’ star…so imagine if we were to actually catch it..we would have all the luck and our dreams come true. Right?

Just imagine a genie granting you 3 wishes. Would you be ungrateful and tell him “no thanks”? I would hardly think so.

3 wishes

So imagine you getting those three wishes…..what are you going to do with them when you get them? Just throw them in the closet? Or give them away to someone else? I would hope that you use them to the fullest – considering that you were the one who wished for them in the first place.

Have you seen a falling star that you didn’t catch and keep in your pocket for a rainy day?

Think about it…go and seize that opportunity!


Who are ‘THEY’ Anyway? —The Day After the Day After the 30 Day Blog Challenge

“They” say this and “they say that, Who are “they” anyway?


Two days after the 30 day Blog Challenge and my brain is on ‘overload’. So much information just itching to come out. So, I’m doing my normal early morning scanning of the internet like Ward Cleaver would reach for his morning coffee and read the paper at the breakfast table. Here I am reaching for my lemon water and snooping around news pages online in the modern day “Leave it to ‘Valerie’” sitcom.

While surfing with my mouse in hand; I happened upon an article about how a ‘Glass of red wine equals 1 hour at the gym”, so ‘they’ say. And then I got to thinking about many other articles that I read where ‘they’ were saying that ‘wine’ isn’t good for you – I became unconscionably perplexed at what to believe and the real mystery of who ‘they’ are anyway?


I searched and searched and asked my closest and most dearest friend – my “Google Bible” and was having the hardest time finding out who “they” were. After all I had been hearing about “them” all my life.


The first recollection I remembered having of ‘them’ was way back in the old days when I was just a young teen and my fashion conscious mother trying to force me to wear some nasty spearmint green outfit for school because, as she so eloquently put it, “that’s what they’re wearing”. And that was ‘all she wrote’ because those words were magic to my ears and I just automatically obeyed and wore the confounded getup; all for the reason that “they” are wearing it too? Who are “they”?


“They won’t let you get away with that.”

“They tell us everything we eat will kill us.”

“They say every cloud has a silver lining.”

You hear about ‘them’ constantly — on radio talk shows, in bars, at political rallies, on the job.

The thing is, nobody seems to know exactly who they are. And just why is it so important to us to know what they think, anyway?


That little four-letter word is more complex than it lets on, representing everything from lazy language usage to the pangs of paranoia. Psychologists and linguists have reason for examining the pronoun.


Let`s see what they have to say about they, shall we?

There’s the positive ‘they’ that my mother used in the example above – “that’s what THEY’RE wearing”

`And then there`s the paranoid they as in `They`ll never let that happen` — the sinister they of the conspiracy mavens.`

But “they-think“ is not just limited to people who have seen the movie JFK 17 times. In some minor way, most of us assume once in a while that somebody is out to get us or is sitting in judgment of us.

You never know where ‘they’ will pop up. In fact, maybe YOU are one of them.

You`re definitely a ‘they’ if you work for the Internal Revenue Service, a college admissions program or a law enforcement agency. Anybody in a position of authority gets branded a ‘they’ pretty quickly.


Think about this….most people have a tendency to believe whatever they read, and they use ‘they’ as a general, generic authority. But they’re not reading carefully enough to see who’s saying it.

To illustrate, try this little thought experiment. Imagine me, as the writer of this article, was a member of the media –I would be a ‘they’ if there ever was one.

You might assume –not really knowing me very well, and if you want to bequeath the writer power and authority — that she is wearing a suit, perched rigidly in a straight-back chair while composing this article and poring over books checked out of a library’s etymology section.


But what happens to your image of me when I confess that I’m not wearing a tie, I’m sitting on my right foot, my desk is cluttered with notebooks, pens and envelopes, and I haven’t found a good place to hang up my raincoat? Suddenly, I’m not an authority. I’m just an average Jane trying to make sense of a confusing topic.


To be sure, most of us use they for innocuous reasons. We’re simply being a bit lazy at worst, conversational at best.

For instance, when we tell each other around the office cooler that, “They say it’ll rain on Friday,“ we’re summing up what we have learned. Most likely, the listener doesn’t expect to hear, “Well, the National Weather Service is estimating a 70 percent chance for precipitation, while Accu-Weather pegs the likelihood at 80 percent.“


There are still more reasons for creating artificial ‘theys’. Linguists say we do so when we’re uncomfortable with somebody or some group.

Take your average bigot, for example.

Think about this for a moment…We tend to use pronouns when we discriminate against a group.. Rather than refer to a minority by their full name, we call them ‘they’. It seems to be a way of avoiding things that we don’t like.

We might just hear a Presidential candidate address a convention of African-Americans as “you people“ — which is just another way of saying ‘them’.

The lesson to be learned here, perhaps, is to watch your ‘theys’, as much as your p`s and q`s, before you speak. If your listener is paying attention, you may be grilled about just what you mean by ‘they’. And your efforts to address a subject quickly will, in fact, take a longer time than you planned.

So slow down.

Consider your subject.

Choose your words with care and precision.

After all, haste makes waste.

Or at least that’s what ‘they’ say.


Thank You Bradley — Day 30 Blog Challenge


After joining this 30 day Blog Challenge group and successfully writing a blog everyday for it’s entirety; I finally ran into my very first glitch. Not too shabby!

The last day of the challenge was intended, in my mind to be like the icing on the cake; the best of the best; a tribute to Bradley Will. The founder of Learn to Blog and the initiator of this challenge and the Facebook group; Bradley has been there for all of us who participated 24-7; round the clock. He spent long grueling hours at his computer making sure all of us ‘blog writers’ were moving right along with as much ease as possible.

I had all of this figured out – I was going to do a short video sharing my appreciation. Now, I’ve never done a ‘selfie video’ before, so I was quite wet behind the ears. But, I got it down first try! I was so excited and ready to ‘publish’.

Naturally I used my smartphone to accomplish this feat; so the first thing I had to do after taping was send it to myself so I could get it on my computer and voila; the 30th post would be behind me!

Needless to say; I spent an unusual questionable amount of time trying to send it to myself. It just wasn’t working. My phone kept saying it was running low on memory. So I started deleting texts; contacts; video and photos and by now it was 4 long hours later and I still hadn’t gotten my last blog posted yet.

So, I got this great idea to use Kies software to backup everything on my phone so I could grab the video from there. As overzealous as I was by then, I figured I would do this backup and still have time before the stroke of midnight and I turned into a pumpkin.

It was taking forever and barely moving! I had to do something drastic – but what? I canceled the backup and started over and decided to just back up only my ‘videos’ I had on the phone.

Much better….instead of 6 hours it turned out to be 1 hour. Whoopee! I still had a chance.

After it was complete; I made sure I could view the video and saved it to my ‘One Drive’ so I could open it at home on another computer; and fled on my sleigh to the north pole; or so it seemed. Hardly, though – since it was a nice warm 80 degrees at dark.

I got home and quickly turned my computer on and started working feverishly to make this happen for my finale. But much to my chagrin; the video was too large to upload to my blog page in WordPress and at that point; closing in on midnight, I was exhausted and defeated – and chose to just start all over tomorrow.

Well, here we are and I got it accomplished by resizing the video; after several downloads that either didn’t work or were just trials with watermarks on the finished video. Then I went into my control panel to uninstall them….and of course it’s way into the morning hours by now and my biological clock stopped ticking a long time ago! But I was determined to get this out there; by hook or by crook!

Nearing the end of my rope; in WordPress and it’s all looking real pretty…I upload the video; ‘publish’ for the 40th time and do a last edit before I post it to the Facebook group. I scroll down and go to view the video and it’s BLANK! Going back to my research Google Bible – I had to upload the video to You Tube so I could get a url to copy and paste.

Alright – so I’m putting my best foot forward here….

There you have it Bradley – it’s not much but I suppose it’s the thought that counts – since I literally put more work into this last post than any of the others! Worth it to the core!!!

Thanks for the memories!

Until we meet again, Bradley………………


The Writer’s Muse — Day 29 Blog Challenge

Writer's muse 2

See the world for what it really is
Give it what you live and love
Speak your mind
Open big and wide

Don’t try to hide your inner self
Blow them away with all you’ve got
Speak your mind
Open big and wide

Do it all with what you may
Talk about it ever day;
Speak your mind
Open big and wide

You’ll reach out near and far
Don’t be afraid; to your dismay
Speak your mind
Open big and wide

Let it all hang out to a degree
Taking in the fruits so all can see
Speak your mind
Open big and wide

Blog with your hyperbole
Shed some light on everything
Speak your mind
Open big and wide


Please Enjoy My Photography Gallery
(click on photos to make larger)

going somewhere

good morning sunshine

morning glory

morning mirrors

photos from val's samsung galaxy 3 2178

photos from val's samsung galaxy 3 2661

photos from val's samsung galaxy 3 2506

Keep on Moving — Day 28 Blog Challenge


Sometimes when I write; I put some type of music or a old movie on in the background that I think will inspire me to write from the depths of my inner most being that can enlighten my readers in such a way that I feel satisfied that I did a job well done.

Just recently I read about an older, very famous celebrity’s 90th birthday celebration that was held at Disneyland in California. And this man was one of my personal favorites throughout my life in many aspects. So I decided to put one of the movies and some jingles that he was most famous for from “Mary Poppins” in the background to give me the feeling of just being a kid again.

I actually sung along with these for sure!


‘A Spoonful of Sugar’

And it certainly did the trick!

The famed gentleman’s name is Dick Van Dyke. A household name to us Baby Boomers….and for the rest of you…well…you might know him from the many syndicated episodes of the “Dick Van Dyke Show” or “ Mary Poppins” , and “Chitty Chitty Bang Bang”, just to mention a few.


But my closer feeling to this actor was his personality resemblance to my own father that I felt so close to. His thoughts of “old age” from his so handsome advancement to the ripe young age of 90 years young just the other day has so eloquently been recorded in his new book, “Keep on Moving”, and that I’ve requested from Santa on my Christmas list this year.

book title

He had a fulfilling life to say the least and is married to a woman 46 years his junior! I mean for real….she’s probably younger than his grandchildren are…Think about it….but what does that matter?

His longevity is what’s so amazing! And his attitude towards life itself is what really inspired me.

So, another jingle for my inspirational audio recording is:

Take a listen:
‘Chim Chim Cheree’

Does it take you back like it did me?

And……as I listened and wrote….I was so taken back….and I’m sure I had a grin from one end of my face to the other….smiling and feeling the sense of wonderment that only a child would render…..

Ahhhh…..well I need to get back to reality….

So Dick Van Dyke is an amazing fellow…..

And I read a portion of his book; even though I had a feeling, from my own experience with my father, that I pretty much knew what this book was going to be about.

The spice of life – and what you make of it – is really what ‘Life’ is all about…

In his book – “Keep Moving”, Dick Van Dyke offers his own playful anecdotes and advice, as well as insights from his brother, actor Jerry Van Dyke; his friend and creator of The Dick Van Dyke Show, Carl Reiner; and other spirited friends and family. Whether he’s describing the pleasure he takes in his habitual visits to the grocery store; daily trips to the gym; daily crossword puzzles; how he met his late-in-life-love Arlene; or how he sprung back, livelier than ever, from a near-death experience, Dick’s optimistic outlook is an invigorating tonic for anyone who needs a reminder that:


Watch this GREAT example of his vitality – (if my children watched this they would say that it was just like my dad at 90)

(quotes from his book: “Keep Moving”)

“You don’t have to act your age. You don’t even have to feel it. And if it does attempt to elbow its way into your life, you do not have to pay attention. If I am out shopping and hear music playing in a store, I start to dance. If I want to sing, I sing. I read books and get excited about new ideas. I enjoy myself. I don’t think about the way I am supposed to act at my age – or at any age.

As far as I know, there is no manual for old age.
There is no test you have to pass.
There is no way you have to behave.
There is no such thing as ‘age appropriate.’

When people ask my secret to staying youthful at an age when getting up and down from your chair on your own is considered an accomplishment, you know what I tell them?

‘Keep moving.’

– Dick Van Dyke

Couldn’t have said it better myself! That’s what my dad did and I’m going to keep the same tradition going! You can rest assured that I’m going to ‘Keep Moving’!


Do People Really Change? — Day 27 Blog Challenge

The truth is do they— or do we?
get to know them
Has anyone ever noticed with any relationship – be it close & personal, friendships or business related that once you get to know them – they change?

So many times, in my own relationships I think that if there would’ve just been a mutual pre-determined cut off time to end all ties and work towards that goal – that everyone would be much better off. It always seems like the first stages are always the best. I would assume it’s because all parties are on their best behavior during that time.

Especially in a romantic relationship, the beginning of almost every romance is full of mutual admiration and adoration. Confidence is high for everyone and both people feel excited by the new love they feel.

After a few months, it’s almost as if a spell has been lifted and both people begin to let their true selves emerge. As this happens the unconditional acceptance previously felt appears to fade away. Women typically begin to complain that their partner stops listening to them and men typically complain that their partner wants to change them.

On a more comical side – this could be the reasons male and females are so different in their own ways:

But when it gets to this point you begin to feel something is drastically wrong.

In truth, nothing is wrong- in fact the exact opposite is true. For the past few months both people have been on their best behavior. They have kept their houses clean, used their best manners, and as a result have received unconditional acceptance from their partner.

Once the initial fear of “Will this work out?” has passed, people want to be liked for who they really are. Suddenly qualities like being over-talkative, impatient, short tempered, not being in the mood, even needing some space show up.

So could it be true that seriously…

Then I found some wonderful quotes from this book “Men are from Mars and Women are from Venus” that could help all of us when this happens to us so maybe we won’t have to have that pre-determined cut off time and actually learn to live longer together in a happier mutually acceptable scenario. Just remember; reading them is one thing – but putting them into practice and really meaning it is another.
(I just picked out a few of my favorites)

“When a man can listen to a woman’s feelings without getting angry and frustrated, he gives her a wonderful gift.
He makes it safe for her to express herself.
The more she is able to express herself, the more she feels heard and understood, and the more she is able to give a man the loving trust, acceptance, appreciation, admiration, approval, and encouragement that he needs.”

“Men are motivated when they feel needed while women are motivated when they feel cherished.”

‎” when men and women are able to respect and accept their differences then love has a chance to blossom ”

“we are unique individuals with unique experiences”

“Men need to remember that women talk about problems to get close and not necessarily to get solutions.

“Fortunately perfection is not a requirement for creating great relationships.”

“Remember, if a man needs to pull away like a rubber band, when he returns he will be back with a lot more love. Then he can listen. This is the best time to initiate conversation.”

“Men mistakenly expect women to think, communicate, and react the way men do; women mistakenly expect men to feel, communicate, and respond the way women do.”

“A woman should not be judged for needing this reassurance, just as a man should not be judged for needing to withdraw.”

“When men and women are single for a long time, the differences are sometimes not as defined.”

“Not only do men and women communicate differently but they think, feel, perceive, react, respond, love, need, and appreciate differently.”

So to really answer the question – Do People Really Change? Yes, they do…I feel that we all react off of each other’s actions. So since it’s a known fact in any relationship that you can’t change others you can only change yourself – The best advice that can be given here is:

Change yourself to what you want the other person to be and life will be a better place!– hence follow the old reliable –



Laughter is the BEST Medicine — Day 26 Blog Challenge


After having an incredible nightmare last night that I won’t even give merit to by speaking about it….I decided to transfer that negative energy into a more positive existence by talking about LAUGHTER.

So, just thinking in that direction gave an interesting spin on my teaspoon full of medicine I inhaled to shake off the “heebee geebies”.

What seemed like just a few minutes of joy actually turned into hours of incessant laughter that filled my soul with such comfort.

I know that sounds kind of out there a bit. But sometimes; just some off the wall humor can literally soothe your soul and be healthy for not only your spirit but your body too.

Laughter triggers healthy physical changes in the body. Humor and laughter strengthen your immune system, boost your energy, diminish pain, and protect you from the damaging effects of stress. Best of all, this priceless medicine is fun, free, and easy to use.

“Your sense of humor is one of the most powerful tools you have to make certain that your daily mood and emotional state support good health.”
~ Paul E. McGhee, Ph.D.


Laughter is a powerful antidote to stress, pain, and conflict. Nothing works faster or more dependably to bring your mind and body back into balance than a good laugh. Humor lightens your burdens, inspires hopes, connects you to others, and keeps you grounded, focused, and alert.

With so much power to heal and renew, the ability to laugh easily and frequently is a tremendous resource for surmounting problems, enhancing your relationships, and supporting both physical and emotional health.

I came to my own joyous conclusion. Let laughter, humor, and play become an integrated part of your life. You will see your creativity flourish and you will have new discoveries for playing with friends, coworkers, acquaintances, and loved ones and when you lease expect it they will occur to you daily. Humor can actually take you to a higher place where you can view the world from a more relaxed, positive, creative, joyful, and balanced perspective.

As I laughed my way to writing this post; watching video after video, my stomach muscles and jaws got a complete workout! I just had to share the ones that made me almost cry and wet my pj’s.

The first one is from the old Carol Burnett Show from back in the day – when Tim Conway and Harvey Korman did one of the best skits I’ve seen. The dentist skit. This will get you started…

Then the next one is from a more current show that is just hilarious! But I want to explain the history of this show so you will understand the humor, if you’re not familiar with it already.

The show “Impractical Jokers” are four guys that are literally experienced pranksters that goes as far back as 24 years when they were best friends at an all-boys high school in Staten Island. There they pulled prank after prank and from that craziness they decided to keep it alive by creating a TV series to prank the public. And it’s not scripted!

Each episode, the four Jokers dare each other through a series of challenges. They might be charged with stealing food from people in a buffet line, or convincing strangers on a beach to share their towels, or to say awkward or offensive things to total strangers. If the Joker fails in any way, they lose the challenge, and the Joker with the most losses at the end of the episode gets a major punishment.

It’s in it’s 5th season; so they must be doing something right! It just keeps getting funnier and funnier!

Here you go! Stay dry!!

Keep in mind; this is only a small hint of the comedy that surrounds laughter!

Now if this doesn’t give you a positive kick start to your day, I don’t know what will!

P.S. If you think you might want to laugh for the rest of the day that will keep you rolling on the floor, there are more videos to watch at the conclusion of each example above!! Have at it!!


PLEASE – Go to Sleep! –Day 25 Blog Challenge


Please play this most appropriate audio jingle while you read if you dare…but be careful not to fall asleep!

As I lay awake almost all night long trying to fall asleep while my brain just wouldn’t shut down; I decided to enlighten myself and learn why I wasn’t getting any zzzz’s and what kind of zombie would I be the next day!

I knew I had already broken the first rule

Then I tried the only best mantra I could think of
“YOU WILL GO TO SLEEP” and that didn’t work
stay calm

Then I tried the deep breathing technique
and well my nose happened to be all clogged up
so I had to get up to blow it…so that didn’t work
fall asleep

And I even tried all the hot stuff (No! not that – take your mind out of the gutter)…
The hot bath and heated pillow and all that…
Not only did my pillow almost blow up in
the microwave; all I had was
caffeinated tea bags so then my eyes
felt like they were glued open!

The only thing I could think of that I should resort to doing to possibly remedy this night’s disaster was to just cling tight to my google search bible and figure out what could happen to me the next day without any shuteye….I felt that maybe, just maybe the actual act of reading would help to put me in a trance and magically drift me way out into la la land. (wherever that is)

Somebody’s Definition

la la land
You know when you see someone and think, “wow, they’re in their own world.” Well that world is la la land.


The term either refers to Hollywood, Los Angeles or a state of mind synonymous with Hollywood that is out of touch with reality, focusing on dreams, fantasies or frivolous endeavors.

Okay! I decided I didn’t want to go anywhere near la la land!

Basically; this is what I was going through…and not exactly in that order…..

Then I read about all these wonderful
side effects to not getting any sleep
and I wasn’t down for any of them…
just didn’t have time for these things
to happen to me…I gotta work!

So with no further a dew….I bring you the only things I’m going to try to do! (wow..that rhymes)

sleep for val
(click photo to make larger) but my eyes were really this blurry by now!

Happy ZZZZZZZZZ’s I’m off to Valley land! (you know – Valerie (Valley) oh never mind just go to sleep!


Fun Christmas Tree Facts & Trivia –Day 24 Blog Challenge

Couple shopping for Christmas tree

Shopping for a Christmas tree can be grueling but at the same time can be fun! I find that Christmas music, brisk cool weather (hopefully) and the fresh pine scent that immediately flashes so many memories before our eyes; can help the experience move along in a positive direction. But having some knowledge about these Christmas pines might help make it a little more fun and enjoyable too.

(Please feel free to play this Christmas jingle while you read – and you’ll see what I mean. Sorry I can’t produce the pine scent but you can surely imagine it)

Here are some fun Christmas tree facts and trivia that I bet weren’t exactly on the top of your history teacher’s list of lessons you learned growing up; but could make for great family gatherings conversation during this holiday season……..

  • Christmas trees have been sold commercially in the United States since about 1850.
  • In 1979, the National Christmas Tree was not lighted except for the top ornament. This was done in honor of the American hostages in Iran.
  • Between 1887-1933 a fishing schooner called the Christmas Ship would tie up at the Clark Street bridge and sell spruce trees from Michigan to Chicagoans.
  • The tallest living Christmas tree is believed to be the 122-foot, 91-year-old Douglas fir in the town of Woodinville, Washington.
  • The Rockefeller Center Christmas tree tradition began in 1933.
  • In 1923, President Calvin Coolidge started the National Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony now held every year on the White House lawn.
  • Since 1966, the National Christmas Tree Association has given a Christmas tree to the President and first family.
  • Most Christmas trees are cut weeks before they get to a retail outlet.
  • In 1912, the first community Christmas tree in the United States was erected in New York City.
  • Christmas trees generally take 6-8 years to mature.
  • Christmas trees are grown in all 50 states including Hawaii and Alaska.
  • 100,000 people are employed in the Christmas tree industry.
  • 98 percent of all Christmas trees are grown on farms.
  • More than 1,000,000 acres of land have been planted with Christmas trees.
  • 77 million Christmas trees are planted each year.
  • On average, over 2,000 Christmas trees are planted per acre.
  • Growing Christmas trees provides a habitat for wildlife.
  • Recycled trees have been used to make sand and soil erosion barriers and been placed in ponds for fish shelter.
  • The first Christmas tree retail lot in the United States was started in 1851 in New York by Mark Carr.
  • Christmas trees remove dust and pollen from the air.
  • Since 1971, the Province of Nova Scotia has presented the Boston Christmas Tree to the people of Boston in gratitude for the relief supplies received from the citizens of Boston after a ship exploded in 1917 following a collision in the Halifax, Nova Scotia Harbor. Part of the city was leveled killing and injuring thousands.
  • You should never burn your Christmas tree in the fireplace. It can contribute to creosote buildup.
  • Other types of trees such as cherry and hawthorns were used as Christmas trees in the past.
  • The first decorated Christmas was in Riga, Latvia in 1510.
  • Thomas Edison’s assistants came up with the idea of electric lights for Christmas trees.
  • In 1963, the National Christmas Tree was not lit until December 22nd because of a national 30-day period of mourning following the assassination of President Kennedy.
  • The use of evergreen trees to celebrate the winter season occurred before the birth of Christ.
  • In 1856 Franklin Pierce, the 14th President of the United States, was the first President to place a Christmas tree in the White House.
  • Teddy Roosevelt banned the Christmas tree from the White House for environmental reasons.
  • In the first week, a tree in your home will consume as much as a quart of water per day.
  • Tinsel was once banned by the government. Tinsel contained lead at one time, now it’s made of plastic.
  • In 1984, the National Christmas Tree was lit on December 13th with temperatures in the 70s, making it one of the warmest tree lightings in history.
  • 34 to 36 million Christmas trees are produced each year and 95 percent are shipped or sold directly from Christmas tree farms.
  • California, Oregon, Michigan, Washington, Wisconsin, Pennsylvania, and North Carolina are the top Christmas tree producing states.
  • The best selling trees are Scotch Pine, Douglas Fir, Fraser Fir, Balsam Fir, and White Pine.