Tempting fate

“If your advance is going well, you are walking into an ambush.”

I’m not sure where I found that quote but it accurately describes this past week.  If you are a regular follower of Mama’s Empty Nest, you’ll know that I don’t normally post on Fridays.

But here it is, Friday.  And I’m posting.  And while that in itself is not normal, neither has my week been a normal week.  I’ve been absent since last weekend.   And I’ve got a good excuse.

When I was a kid and I was bragging about something, my mother would often say, “Don’t say it!”  She seemed to think if you stated something good or wonderful was happening, you tempted fate to turn it upside down and the exact opposite would occur.

Who knew that our mothers could be so wise?

Just last week, I said to my husband, “Wow! We both made it through this winter without either one of us getting sick or even having a cold.”

Hmmm.   Well, winter isn’t over in my neck of the woods.  It’s snowing as I write this and we’ve had snow on the ground just about every morning this week.

Call it Murphy’s Law or tempting fate or whatever you want to call it.  But winter just ambushed me this week.  In more ways than one.

You know how a picture is worth a thousand words?  Please accept my excuse below for my absence.

blogIMG_0476

©2013 mamasemptynest.wordpress.com+

Are reasons excuses or are excuses reasons?

“Excuses change nothing, but make everyone feel better.” ~ Mason Cooley

If you’re a faithful reader of Mama’s Empty Nest, with a click of your mouse you visit my blog and find I’ve been missing in action this week except for one Wordless Wednesday post.

That one hit the cyber-waves out there because it didn’t take much time to post.   Glean through my pictures and voila!  Wordless Wednesday post fodder!

There’s a reason why I’ve been absent in the blogging world lately.  No excuses, just good reasons.   You may have also noticed it takes longer for your comments to be approved on my posts.

That’s because the laptop has been closed for most of this week, except today, of course.  No emailing, no facebooking, no blogging, no checking WordPress.  I have managed to read my favorite bloggers on my work computer during my lunch hour, but that’s it.

The reason?  It’s crunch time at my house.  Wedding number 2 (our son’s) is fast approaching and although my responsibilities are not as heavy as they were with our middle daughter’s wedding, there are still items that need attention.

And oh, did I mention that I’m planning, preparing, and holding a bridal shower for son’s fiancée next week?  At my house.  You know what that means, big-time cleaning and general sprucing up of the homestead.  We’ve had rain and the weeds replicated with lightning speed outside.  And hubby’s garden commenced producing more zucchini than I can keep up with.

Plus there’s a bridal shower menu to plan, food and beverages to purchase, favors to make, baking to be done, decorations to decide upon, shopping to complete…you get the picture.

And oh, did I mention that oldest daughter’s bridal shower is two weeks after that?  And that I’ll be hosting a houseful of out-of-state bridesmaids? And helping plan, prepare, and host that bridal shower too (thankfully, it’s at the church fellowship hall)?

And of course, I’m in the throes of assisting oldest daughter with her wedding planning, but that’s a whole other blog post.

So….while Mama’s Empty Nest may be empty indeed — no wait, there’s more info to come on that issue, but I’ll postpone that news for another time — the nest resembles a beehive buzzing with activity.

There, those are my excuses reasons. When Mason Cooley said “Excuses change nothing, but make everyone feel better,”  he was correct, at least it makes me feel better.

I’ll be away for a while, not truly gone, just absent from the blogging scene for the next couple of weeks, I suppose.  I do have some Wordless Wednesday photos queued up in the automatic publish mode, so as long as WP does its part, those should appear in your readers.

So excuse me, but it’s ta-ta for now. The vacuum cleaner, cleaning buckets, and mop are all calling my name.   And I’ve given enough excuses for not heeding them, it’s time for reckoning.  Be back soon!

Copyright ©2012 mamasemptynest.wordpress.com

Tired of excuses

It’s Thursday.  Page three already in Chapter 11 in my Opportunity book.  And you know what?

I can’t wait for Friday!  I cannot wait for this week to be over.   I’m not usually one to wish my week away, but this week…..yeah, so ready for it to be over.

You want to know why?  Several things actually have contributed to my crankiness but there is only one source.  People.  That about sums it up.  So if you arrived at my blog expecting to find something lighthearted or heartwarming today, you might want to stop reading now.  You can go ahead and click out of here, I won’t know and I won’t hold it against you.

Today I’m tired of being irritated and I’m going to vent.  And I’m not making any excuses for it.

My fellow human beings can truly be annoying.  My fellow human beings can be extremely disappointing.  My fellow human beings have the ability to irritate me, anger me, and make me want to throw up my hands in disgust and say, “That’s it.  I’m done with that.”

Why is it that when someone has done something oh, so very wrong, excuses are made for their behavior?  Pick one:

  • “He’s just a product of his poor upbringing.”
  • “She doesn’t know any better.”
  • “He has issues that make him feel uncomfortable.”
  • “She comes from a very disadvantaged family.”
  • “His problem is [insert whatever here].  That’s why he can’t control his behavior.”

You know what I hear when I hear these explanations?  Excuses.

So what is the excuse for someone to willingly prowl up and down a city street in the darkness to deliberately slash parked automobile tires for a Halloween “prank?”  This happened to oldest daughter’s car this week.  And the culprits, who will never be brought to justice, didn’t just slice one of her car tires but three and dozens of other cars were damaged as well.

What is the excuse for being completely disrespectful and defiant to someone trying to help you?  This happened to me somewhere this week, but I’m not able to share the details.

What is the excuse for stealing someone’s credit card number and running up huge purchases on that person’s card?  This happened to my middle daughter and a friend of ours.

What is the excuse for two teenage girls getting into an argument on a social media network which escalated into physically mauling one another?  This happened this week and was reported on the news.

What is the excuse for road rage?  Or harassment?  Or physical abuse?  Or theft?  Or murder?  Turn on your television, your computer or read your newspaper and more than likely, those things have happened in your neck of the woods this week.

There are no excuses.   We all make our own choices.  And we need to take responsibility for our actions.

I’m reminded of a movie from a few years ago, The Pursuit of Happyness, based on the real-life story of Chris Gardner.  According to his autobiography, Gardner’s childhood entailed poverty, domestic violence, alcoholism, sexual abuse and family illiteracy. Even though he never knew his father, lived in foster homes from time to time, he was determined to not let his disadvantaged upbringing define who he was.  He knew that “in spite of where he came from, he could chart another path and attain whatever goals he set for himself.”

After a stint in the Navy, he found a job, married and had a child.  But his wife abandoned him and his son when their finances took a turn for the worse.  He ended up as a single dad, broke, with no job and homeless.

Did he make excuses for the turn his life took?  No.  He did what he had to do for his son and himself to survive even when that meant eating in soup kitchens and sleeping in public restrooms and worked hard to learn as much as he could about a profession he dreamed of entering.  He persevered until he landed his dream job as a broker without a college degree, limited experience and no connections.  And he didn’t blame his circumstances on excuses.

No excuses.  I like the sound of that.

“He that is good for making excuses is seldom good for anything else.” ~ Benjamin Franklin

©2011 mamasemptynest.wordpress.com

Excuses and sticker shock

Mama’s Empty Nest has been absent the last few days.

How many days can you miss posting on your blog before you are considered a truant?

Does WordPress or your readers send a truant officer out after you to see what’s going on and haul your sorry self back to cyberland?

I don’t have a doctor’s excuse because I haven’t been sick.  I can’t get my mom to write an excuse for me either because she and my dad are up in heaven where you don’t need excuses for anything.  I can’t even claim my cat ate my homework.

I’m sincerely hoping I haven’t lost my readers due to my absence.  From my site stats, it looks like few (emphasis on few) people are even checking my blog to see if I’ve written a new post.  So I am a little concerned that some readers have drifted away while I was otherwise preoccupied.

So what’s my reason for so much inactivity on my blog?

Well….I could just say I’ve been busy.  (But that’s a little evasive.)

I could say Easter preparations occupied my time.  (But that’s untrue.)  Only one bird came back to the nest for the holiday;  we had a very simple meal and I didn’t even unpack the Easter decorations, let alone put them out for display.

I could say I don’t have any interesting ideas to write about.  (Not true either, since there are lots of unwritten blog posts swirling around in my head.)

I could say I’ve been unmotivated to write.  (There might be a smidgen of truth to that one.)

Or I could say my laptop has been acting up. (Again untrue.)  It’s been fired up and surfing jauntily all over the net while it rests on my lap and attracts my attention more than ever before.

So I might as well just ‘fess up.  There’s actually a good reason for my blog inactivity.  Another past time has garnered my full attention in my non-working hours.  Middle daughter was home for the entire Easter weekend and we were doing a full press….on wedding planning!

And at this point, let me just declare that I am still not over the sticker shock of the cost of weddings.

So on this 26th page of Chapter 4 in my book of Opportunity, I’m looking fervently for opportunities for Mama and Papa to give dear daughter a beautiful but cost-efficient wedding of her dreams.  I’ll keep you posted on that seemingly impossible task.

©2011 mamasemptynest.wordpress.com