Assured Clear Distance

Assured Clear Distance – you know… that space you leave between your car and the car in front of you so you have enough space/road to bring your car to a safe stop if you must do so quickly.

If you rear-end someone, you are usually sited for not having an assured clear distance.

I almost always leave a nice assured clear distance between me and the car in front of me.  Remember in driver’s training we were taught to count a certain number of seconds (I think it was 3?) from when the car in front of you passed a stationary object to when you did and that would be a safe distance.  Do they still teach that??

Since I now drive 30+ miles daily to work on the interstate, I have a new definition of assured clear distance.

Assured Clear Distance is the space I leave between my van and the vehicle in front of me that everyone else thinks is a space left open for them to pull into …because going around me gets them there sooooo much faster, especially when I am going the exact same speed as the car, that I was a safe distance from, in front of me.  Which then means I must slow down a bit to re-establish my assured clear distance with the new vehicle in front of me.

U595 ACDA Idea (2)

I can hardly wait till winter when I’ll get to drive the interstate with these crazies in the snow!  Oh the joy that will bring!


Berated at Big Lots

You know how some days you can handle anything and then others… well… today was one of those.

I took Lydia to drivers ed class and stopped at Big Lots on the way home.  I mainly went there to check on cat litter and if they had soft kitten food (they didn’t).  I also figured that I could wander the aisles and find some cheap snacks and such to have on hand now that school is done for the summer.

I had a full cart.  Only one register was open and I waited in line for probaby 10 minutes.  When I got to the register, I took some of the items and placed them on the counter.  The cashier says to me:  “Do you mind if the person behind you goes first, they only have on item.”

I sighed and said, “I suppose.”  I then picked up my items that were on the counter, put them back in the cart and backed up.  I had not looked back to see who it was behind me.

It was a white male with attitude.  He then began his tirade – talking to the cashier but really talking to me.

This is what is wrong with this world.  Miss (meaning me – but I’m pretty sure I’m a Mrs.)  you are so rude.  I don’t really want this anymore.  I will just go.  

He then placed his jug of laundry detergent down on a shelf near the register and started to stomp to the door.  All this time I am just standing there with my full cart.  I didn’t move, I didn’t say anything.  He gets halfway to the door and says.

NO!  I do want to get it.

He comes back and picks it up and proceeds to the register.  I still haven’t moved.  The tirade then becomes even better.

I hope that next time you are in line, no one lets you go in front of them.  I hope that no one ever helps you.  If you are on the side of the road with a flat tire or out of gas.  I hope that no one stops and no one comes to help you.  

At this point, I think he suddenly thinks that maybe I’m so poor that I can’t afford a car or something.  I am dressed for work, so I don’t feel like I look like someone destitute.  I have a cart full of groceries.  Yes, I supposed I could be paying with food stamps.  Yes, this Big Lots is in a poor section of town and is probably frequented by “those” people regularly.  I so rarely go to Big Lots, even though I know that you can get decent deals there.  It was just on the way home from the Driver’s Ed class, that is why I stopped there.  Anyways… he now says…

I hope if you need bus fare no one will give you any.

He continued on and on and on while he was checking out with his one item of laundry detergent.

As he left the building, I said to the cashier.  “And that is why I rarely shop here.”

I realize he is a jack-a** and I shouldn’t let it bother me, but it did.  It still brings tears to my eyes now writing about it 4 hours later.    A couple things come to mind though.

1.  The cashier shouldn’t have asked me let someone go in front of me.  If I had seen a person with one item and volunteered, that is different.

2.  I had already stood in line for quite a while and I shouldn’t have to give up my spot, even to a person with one item.  UM… maybe more than one register could have been open???

3.  What happened to “ladies first?”  As a gentleman, shouldn’t he have said to the cashier, “No, that is fine, I’m not in a hurry.”   Apparently he was in a hurry, to be rude and unkind and berate a stranger he knows nothing about.

I didn’t say anything to him.  I just stood there, where I backed away from the register.  I really feel like I didn’t have a choice.  I could have told her no, but then he probably would have been even more irate and who knows, maybe violent.

Goodness.  I never complain when I am standing in a line.  Virtually NEVER.  If I have 2 items or 30 items,  I just wait my turn.  I do get highly irritated by the people who can’t seem to count to 20 for the “20 items or less” lines.  But I don’t say anything.

I don’t do confrontation well at all.  I am not able to formulate appropriate responses/come backs.

I hope that by berating me, it helped him feel more like a man.  I must assume that he was having a bad day.  Maybe his wife/girlfriend/mother/daughter had yelled at him to go get laundry detergent.    I seem to recall my mother telling me something like:  putting others down, doesn’t bring you up.   Though, I don’t know how berating a woman really classifies him as a man.   


Just an FYI, I would NEVER buy laundry detergent at Big Lots, I love my Tide too much!!!

28 years

Some things are built to last forever – thus the reason we have antiques.  I have some great antiques that have been around for many decades or maybe even a century.

Like my Hoosier Cabinet, 2 different rockers, a dresser and armoire… just to name a few.

Some things shouldn’t last that long but you end up keeping them because … well… just because.


On Saturday May 23, I will have been married for 28 years.  Here are some of the things in my house that I’ve had for 28 years.  This was kinda hard, because there are actually more things than I want to admit that are older than that.



An “Anniversary” clock.  The things that are supposed to spin on the bottom no longer spin, but it still keeps great time and has lived in our living room for 28 years.  This was a wedding present from Heidi.


A handmade double wedding ring quilt.  It was made by my mother and grandmother.  It was on our bed for a very long time until the edge started to fray.  Now it is on a quilt rack on the wall.


Yeah… this beautiful dark blue flowered mattess and box spring.  This is one of those things that should NOT still be around after 28 years (and 4 babies).  However, it still is.  It is probably the worst mattress you would ever sleep on now.  The valleys are quite pronounced.   We bought this in Richmond, Indiana shortly before the wedding.


This light weight summer peach bathrobe.  It isn’t worn much anymore, but yep… 28 years old.  Actually a little older because it was a shower gift.


These hand thrown pottery cups and pitcher.  They have only ever been used for decoration and an occasional use in a Last Supper play.  They were made for us by a friend of my mother’s.  She probably remembers who it was, the name escapes me today.


This beautiful copper teapot.  I know this was a present from my bridesmaid Jill.  I even remember thanking her and saying we would think of her everytime we made hot water in it.  Guess what, we have never used it for hot water.  It has only ever been used as a lovely decoration on our hutch.   🙂



Our everyday dishes.  We have service for more than 12.  We still use them everyday.  I still love them.  Too bad Pfaltzgraff did not and discontinued them about 10 years ago.  I do have almost every accessory there is though.


After 28 years, we have accumulated way to much stuff (don’t look in my 3 car garage).  We have lots of good memories from the really good years.  We have some not good memories from the bad years (more of those recently than we want to admit).  We have 4 beautiful daughters that are also smart and talented and loving and giving.   We now “own” our home and have someplace that the girls can really call home.    We have made a few friends over the years (sadly, fewer than you would think) that have stood with us through the good and the bad.

28 years ago… we memorized our vows.   28 years ago… I said:  “…to have and to hold from this day forward, for better, for worse, for richer, for poorer, in sickness and in health, to love and to cherish, until we are parted by death. This is my solemn vow.”    I’m getting tired of the worse and poorer portion.   However,  I made a promise.    28 years ago… I did not get any food at the reception except a small piece of cake because my guests ate it all while we were getting photos.   28 years ago… I had Wendy’s on my wedding night and we stopped to buy socks at the local convenience store on our way to Williamsburg for our honeymoon.    28 years ago…my mother and my maid of honor unwrapped all my gifts because my mother is nosy and then re-wrapped them so I’d never know.  LOL!  Lesson there:  don’t leave gifts in my mother’s charge.


28 year later… I still have a good portion of those gifts.  I recently saw that one of the beach towels I know was a wedding present has finally moved to the “dog towel” stack.  I still have my mother and maid of honor and bridesmaid.  I still have the same husband.  I still wear the same ring (though it was repaired a few years ago).    I no longer have my father.  I no longer have stars in my eyes… the realities of life have been rough.


28 years from now.  I will probably still have the same dishes and some of the other material things.  I better NOT have the same mattress!  I will be 78… I’m pretty sure I will be old enough to have a new mattress by then.



Another Musical Choir Concert

I have attended more High School choir concerts than I can count.  Every school does a “Broadway” concert every so often.  When we were in Cloverleaf schools, they did one every year.


So tonight… at the choir concert… it is “Another Op’nin’ Another Show!”  Gonna be Broadway tunes, GREAT!

Uh-OH… she doesn’t list what musical the songs came from.  WHAT?  Now I have to look them up, because they are familiar but I can’t bring the musical to mind.  AND… there were WAY too many solos/duets.  There should have been more choir group numbers.     😦

Here are the songs they sang:

“Hello” – Book of Morman —  I have not seen that.

“Another Op’nin, Another Show” – Kiss Me Kate — I think I’ve seen that…. I’m pretty sure.

“All That Jazz” – Chicago — yes, I’ve seen that.

“Nine to Five” – 9 to 5 — I saw the TV show some, does that count?

“Don’t Let Me Go” – Shrek — I’ve seen the movie… yeah… not the same thing.  This is one of the few solos that I felt was worth the cost of admission ($6).  This kid did a fabulous job!

“Mad Hatter” – Wonderland — I read the book, that should count for something.

“Lovely to Be a Woman” – Bye, Bye, Birdie — I’ve seen it several times and my #1 daughter was in it.

“Beauty School Dropout” – Grease — one of my all time favorite musicals.

“Once More I Can See” – Wonderland (again)

“Singin’ in the Rain” – same — I have seen this.  When I saw it, it included actual rain on stage.  There was just “lightning” tonight.

“Tomorrow” – Annie — I’m pretty sure I’ve seen this on stage as well as the movie.

“Little Shop of Horrors” – same — I have seen this.

“Suddenly Seymour” – Little Shop — seen it

{They listed “Newsies” but it was not performed.}

“I’m Gonna Wash That Man Right Outa My Hair” – South Pacific — seen it, own the movie.

“There Is Nothin’ LIke a Dame” – South Pacific — (see above)

“Marry the Man Today” – Guys and Dolls — and #1 daughter starred in this in HS as Adelaide!!!     🙂

“Mama, I’m a Big Girl Now” – Hairspray — I’ve just seen the movie

“Agony” – Into the Woods — only seen the movie and we own it too.

“Pulled” – The Addams Family — haven’t seen the musical, have seen the TV show.  The HS just did this this spring, so it makes sense that they would reprise one of the songs.

“Bring Him Home” – Les Mis — seen it on stage, but haven’t seen the movie yet.

“Do You Hear the People Sing?” – Les Mis — (see above)

“Stars” – Les Mis — I think they maybe liked Les MIs?

“For Now” – Avenue Q — maybe?  Haven’t even heard of it.

“100 Easy Ways to Lose a Man” – Wonderful Town — yep, haven’t heard of that one either

“The New Girl In Town” – Hairspray

“Button Up Your Overcoat” – Follow Thru — I just learned (in researching what musical this came from) that this muscial was on Broadway in 1929 and the movie verion in 1930 was one of the first movies in Technicolor.

“Defying Gravity/No One Mourns the Wicked” – Wicked — seen it, would see it again, read the books.

“The Impossible Dream” – Man of La Mancha — heard of it, haven’t seen it

“Lost in the Wilderness” – Children of Eden — hadn’t heard of it

“This is the Moment” – Jekyll & Hyde — haven’t seen it.

I have seen a very long list of musicals over the years.  But it seems, based on this list, that there are a whole lot I have yet to see.  If only…  if only… Carousel Dinner Theater hadn’t closed… I’d still be seeing 6 musicals a year.

Time… keeps on turning…

Every couple of days I get great thoughts and think that I will blog, but then time slips away and I don’t.

The new job schedule… I haven’t totally adjusted to it yet.  I like the job.  I enjoy the hours (well, except the early morning thing) but I haven’t adjusted to getting the things I used to do in the mornings done in the evenings.  I just want to collapse in the evenings.  As I said before:  Even though I’m only working part -time, with the drive, it ends up being closer to full-time out of the house.

More emotional crises have entered our family again… yeah… not gonna go there… if you don’t know… just pray.

One thing that keeps circling in my brain is this thought.

What happens when the life you were leading and the dreams you had that were totally tied up into that life and lifestyle are suddenly changed and you have no say nor recourse?

What happens when you are putting one foot in front of another through a life that is not of your choosing?

I know that sounds weird to most of you.  And I’m certain that you would try to tell me differently.  However, I am living this life and it is not the life I chose.  It is not the life I wanted.  It is not the life I want.    I am doing my best to get through it.  I am doing my best to make this adjusted life decent for the rest of my family.

You will say: change it.  Make it what you want.  Adjust your “sails.”


Again, I know you will not understand this, but I am not able to do that.  I have no control to change it back.  I have no control to change things to bring my dreams back into alignment with my life.

I have been a sailor.  I know about adjusting sails.  I can adjust my sails, I have adjusted my sails.  However, I do not wish to travel to the shore where I am now being blown.    The wind will not allow me to turn around and return to the path I want to take.  I cannot tack and come at it from a different angle either, that is not an option.

My brain knows that some of you will say:  God has great plans in store for you.  This must be a better path.  He only wants the best for you.  He knows your trials, he knows your pain.  There is something great in store for you when you get to that other shore.

I’m sorry.  I have a very hard time accepting that anymore.  The disappointment and the obstacles continue repeatedly.    When I just start to feel OK  and think that maybe I can adjust a little bit, I am blindsided by something else.

Honestly, it isn’t that I can’t adjust the sails.  I have had to do that many, many times in the past.   However, each of those times, I was still headed in the same direction, just from a different angle.  Now I am no longer headed towards any of my hopes and dreams.  I see them out there and it grieves me that I must come to the realization that I will not ever reach them.  That I must give them up.  That despite what I want, someone else took charge of my boat and spun it around and sent it out of control in another direction.

Yes… again, I know that you will say to me that God is in control…

A dear friend shared with me Psalm 37 recently.  I cried the whole way through it.  Deep, deep down, I believe that.  I just dearly need some physical proof.  I have lived on hopes and prayers for the better part of 5 years (but really almost 14 years) and it seems that none of them are being answered.  Except if you count NO.

I am wearing out.   Just a small gesture that my dreams might still happen.  Just a small answer of “yes” to a prayer would be great.

Others of you will tell me… count your blessings… don’t be so negative… you have a wonderful life.  Again, I am living it.   I am glad that from your perspective my life is all roses and bubblegum, but from mine it is not.   I do realize I have many blessings and things to be thankful for.  That however, doesn’t negate the bigger picture that has been catastrophically changed.


I have even been told that I have such a positive attitude in the midst of all my strife.  HA!  I’m just putting one foot in front of the other and trying to get through each day and wake up to start again the next day.

If I am teaching my children anything, I guess I am teaching them perseverance.  I hope that the lesson pays off and that sometime, somehow, my perseverance will result in something wonderful.  I’m just not seeing it now.