“Trick Or Treat” Halloween Approaches Once Again

banner-1756614_1920

Yes, it is that time of year again folks; time to prepare for greeting all the ghosts and ghouls at your door looking for candy and various other treats.

Hubby and I were in WalMart the other day and couldn’t help but stare at the shelves upon shelves of the calorie-laden, pricey and very large variety of candies being offered for sale.

The most expensive of these being those with chocolate involved. Cases of fun sized chocolate bars for around $10.00 Canadian. Yikes! In some neighborhoods, you would need several cases.

halloween-candy-1014629_1920

These candy displays have been set up for weeks now and I have ranted about stores pushing the holidays on us earlier and earlier every year in another post some nine months ago.

In case you missed it you can read that one here (link opens in a new window)  Commercialism Of Holidays Has To Stop!

The other day when we were in the store we noticed the scrum of people eagerly dumping boxes and bags into their shopping carts; like they were hoarding in anticipation of a  coming apocalypse.

I am a parent of two sons and I remember the years when they were young taking them out to do trick or treating in the neighborhood. Some years it rained and some years there was snow!

halloween-1751619_1920

When we lived in the country I had to drive them to the closest city in order to find enough houses in one place to make it worthwhile. A quick 15 minute trip in the car got us there in no time.

I would arm them with plastic pumpkins with handles when they were really young and later when they were in grade 4 or 5 and on we used pillowcases. You could really collect a haul with pillow cases.

I still remember them climbing into the back seat when they were done, their faces beaming with happiness. Their masks discarded on the seat beside them or the floor.

Excited chatter erupted from the back seat on the drive home as they rummaged through their loot exclaiming things like, “I got cans of pop!” or “Trade you three of these for that bag of chips”.

halloween-72937

One year we attended a Halloween party held at the local community center where prizes were given for best homemade costume.

I am pleased to report that both of my sons won that year for being a clown and Freddy Kruger. It was worth the time spent making the costumes when I saw how happy they were to have won.

The prizes were free movie rentals and a bag of snacks of their choice along with a bottle of pop of their choice at the corner store.

My sons are both grown men now and my eldest son has a son of his own with whom he walks around their neighborhood to continue the tradition.

Last year my grandson was a Jedi from Star Wars at 1 year old. Yes, he was adorable in his costume. See! 🙂

20151031_190311_2_bestshot

My son dressed up in similar garb to accompany him and introduced him as his padawan.  I haven’t heard yet what this year’s choice will be.

20151031_203103

 

 

Out here in the country, we do not have to stock up on candy or worry about answering the door for trick or treaters as children in the area will likely be going into the town just like I did with my children back in the day.

The best part of Halloween for me is the candy sales in stores afterward. This year it will be the day after. Halloween, October 31, lands on a Monday so any Halloween specific candy or treats will be at a discounted price come Tuesday.

My best friend Trish and I used to raid the stores the day after the holiday and stock up. We would throw the lot into a huge bowl and set it on the table along with our drinks; tea  I believe it was.

We would then play cards, after the boys were in bed, well into the night; laughing, talking and munching on candy. Oh, those were the days, when I got to spend a lot of time with one of my best friends.

This year will be quiet in comparison. My husband and I will likely treat it like any other night. Our celebration days are past us now that our children are grown.

I am thankful that I had those years and that excitement with my sons when they were young but I am just as thankful now for the peace and solitude of the country.

My wish is that all who celebrate by dressing up and going door to door have a safe and fun evening. To those who are opening their doors to receive them in their various costumes; I hope you have a great time as well.

Before I post this I wanted to add one more interesting development. I wonder if you have seen this in the past couple of years. It is called the Teal Pumpkin Project.

By placing a pumpkin outside your door  that has been painted in a teal color you signify that your house will provide non-allergenic treats to the trick or treaters who are allergic.

These allergies are to peanuts, gluten, milk and all manner of other sensitivities. What they do is provide non-candy treats from somewhere like the dollar store in lieu of candy.

I think this is marvelous so that all can celebrate Halloween. This was never an issue back in the day but it seems allergies are abundant now.

The end of October is upon us already. It will soon be time to start thinking about and decorating for Christmas. November comes first though not that the stores are going to acknowledge that. LOL. 😉

Thank you for visiting my blog once again my friends. Tell me, do you have plans for Monday night? If you are going to dress up; what is your costume going to be?

Please leave your comment or question in the comment section below and I try to get to each and every one I receive. Happy Halloween one and all! 🙂

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Advertisements

Why I NEED To Write

writing-1508158

Surprise! I am actually writing  a post not based on a prompt. LOL This is something I have been thinking a great deal about lately and a great topic for writing in a blog post.

Hello everyone, today I thought I would talk to you about writing. More specifically I thought I would talk to you about what writing means to me.

I have wanted to write a book for as long as I can remember. Perhaps the reason I have not achieved that goal yet is because I lack the discipline to keep working on a manuscript.

Perhaps it is the fear of failure that keeps me from sticking my neck out and actually creating a manuscript to submit to publishers.

However, there is something deep inside of me will not let the dream of becoming a writer die.

Chances are one day I will conquer my fears, establish a routine and the discipline required to produce said manuscript.

The thing is I do not want to go to my grave with any regrets or wonder what could have been if only I had pushed through my reticence and freed the book that I know is within me begging to be written.

What would I write about? I can hear you asking so I will tell you; my life story. I have been through a lot of things I think people will be able to relate to.

Maybe someone out there (hopefully lots and lots of someones) will want to read my story. No, I am not someone famous, nor do I have a glamorous life that will make people want to flock to bookstores to buy my book but one can hope.

Still, I feel like I have something to say; something of value to contribute to the universe.

I have joked around with my friends before when discussing the thought of writing my life story. What has gotten the most laughs and nods of agreement, is the idea that librarians would not know whether to shelve it under fiction or non-fiction.

Apart from the whole book idea, there are a lot of other examples of writing that I do on a sort of regular basis.

There are things like this blog, shopping lists, journaling (not as regularly as I should; see comment about my lack of discipline above), sentiments written in cards, cheques (does anybody do that anymore?)  and so on.

home-office-336378_1920

Along with the various forms writing takes there are just as many media with which to write.

Personally, I prefer using a computer as editing is quick and easy; with practice, even these corrections on the fly will not slow down or interrupt your writing.

You must, however, remember to save your work often. A piece of advice I have had over the years and have never forgotten is this; save your work as often as you are willing to redo it.

In other words, save every half hour if you are willing to redo that half hour’s worth of work should something go wrong.

This is one thing I appreciate with WordPress; it autosaves quite frequently leaving me to concentrate on the words I am putting on the screen instead of worrying how long it has been since the last save.

I tend to think of writing in terms of producing a manuscript and submitting it to a publisher in hopes of getting a book deal. I want a book actually printed on paper and bound  between covers with a graphic on the front and my picture on the back.

I want a book actually printed on paper and bound  between covers with a graphic on the front and my picture on the back.

It has to have a tempting synopsis that will make readers want to pick up and purchase my book.

I would love to have Stephen King, my favorite author, say something kind about my book along the lines of he couldn’t put it down. 😉

I like, no, I prefer reading real books as opposed to e-books on a device like Kobo or Kindle or whatever.

This blog is not about reading, though, it is about writing and the only reason I bring up reading is to underline what form I want my writing to be published in.

Writing endures for years and years. I want that to be part of my legacy; passing on things I have learned and experienced in this life to generations into the future.

old-letters-436501_1920

What I am curious about is how you feel about writing…is there a book inside of you wanting to get out into the world or is blogging as far as you want to take it?

Please let me know in the comment section what you think about writing; what it means to you and for you.

Thanks for once again stopping by my blog to read my thoughts on this subject. I really appreciate your support and your input. Have yourselves a wonderful day/night, as always. 🙂

Welcome to Lake Susan!

sweating-girl

Today’s post was inspired by a prompt from 365 Days Of Writing Prompts.

Feed your senses

Write down the first sight, sound, smell, and sensation you experienced on waking up today. Pick the one you’re most drawn to, and write. (For a bigger challenge, pick the one you’re least drawn to.)

The first sensation I experienced on waking up this morning  was sweating and it happens far too often. My husband jokingly refers to me as a lake, hence the title of this post, and I can’t say that he is wrong.

Unfortunately, I have reached that stage in life known as menopause. As women, we all go through it at some point either naturally or as a result of surgery or chemotherapy among other reasons.

I have been dealing with this for a long time now but lately, the menopausal symptoms are getting worse. I think it is time to go see my doctor.

I have been doing a lot of research on the internet. Not to worry, I know some trusted websites to check for medical related information.

Here’re a couple of the ones I use, as an example:

WebMD and MedBroadcast

You can’t believe everything you read or see on the internet and it is important to only consider trusted websites. I cannot stress that enough.

Too many people fall victim to bad advice and quack cures on the internet because they are too trusting. It is important to always check what you are reading with your physician.

Trusted websites are ones that are not only updated regularly but are overseen by medical personnel.

They also tell you something like this (this example is from the MedBroadcast site I have linked above.)

By far sweating is my biggest complaint about menopause. Sweating during the day is bad enough but at night the sheets, my pillow, and everything get drenched.

Combined with that is my Type 2 Diabetes which means I get up at least once in the night to pee. That is a pain in the neck enough with disrupted sleep but coming back to a cold, wet bed is beyond horrible.

I have used bath towels on top of the soaked sheets and pillows to avoid disturbing my husband in order to change the bedding.

I have been washing all my bedding including pillows so often that I fear it is wearing them out or wearing out my laundry machines or both.

Some of the articles I have read say that menopause is different for every woman. Symptoms could go from almost not evident to being so severe as to be debilitating.

Oh, how I wish mine were at the other end of the scale. Unfortunately, my symptoms are registering more toward the debilitating end of the scale.

I am also wondering if this is part of menopause, or maybe it is the Type 2 Diabetes, does anyone else sweat after eating?

I mean, seriously, my arms, legs, head, neck, everywhere is covered in sweat. It reminds me of something I learned about cars or vehicles in general I suppose.

It is called heat soak and that is what it feels like is happening to me. With heat soak, when the vehicle is parked after being driven for a while it will continue to heat up.

No longer being driven means the radiator fan is no longer running and the rad fluid is no longer circulating to cool the engine down; therefore the heat builds up.

When I am no longer eating I can feel the heat build up in me. It is a totally weird feeling and one I think I should mention to my doctor.

Maybe he can explain what this mystery is to me.Thankfully the after eating thing doesn’t last too long before it dissipates.

All I know for sure is that I have to get this figured out and get some help with the symptoms because they are driving me crazy.

Do any of the women reading this post have issues like this? Can you relate? What did you do to get through it?

I would really appreciate any help or suggestions if you would like to leave them in the comments section.I do understand if you don’t feel like sharing details like that in the comments section. Thanks 🙂

For the men who read my blog posts: Sorry for dragging you into female territory today but the prompt lead me to this topic when it asked for the first sensation I felt when I woke up today.

I do appreciate my male audience, very much so, you guys rock! I promise my next post won’t be so uncomfortable for men to read. 🙂 Thanks for bearing with me if you have read this far.

Where Do You Go To Get A Clone Made?

Today’s post is thanks to the inspiration taken from one of the 365 Days Of Writing Prompts

Clone wars: If you could clone yourself, how would you split up your responsibilities?

clones

 

My husband would love the topic of this post.  I am quite sure he thinks that would be just wonderful; though not for the same reasons as I would.

Before I get into the splitting up of responsibilities I think we should consider for a moment what it would be like living with another you.

I mean, how crazy would it be to see an exact copy of yourself sharing the house with you and your spouse? Come to think of it would your spouse know which one is the original you?

From the question, I am of the understanding that this clone would be a real live human being made from your DNA. We are not talking about robots here after all.

Imagine, an exact replica human being that looks like you acts like you and talks like you.  I am not sure I could deal with seeing myself from the outside like that and telling myself what to do.

This would certainly be a weird dynamic to wrap your head around and it would take a great deal of adjustment in order to get used to the realities of what that situation would entail.

Would the clone you have the same thoughts and feelings as you do? Would the clone me react the same way as I would when it comes to being the house drudge who does all the cooking and cleaning?

I guess it boils down to the specifics of just what a clone is versus what we are. We are born and grow up going through experiences  that change who we are and how we see the world.

We learn as we go and that changes how we interact with other people and helps us form opinions of what goes on in our surroundings.

Does a clone? Would you have to wait for a clone to grow from embryo to adulthood and if so would that not bring about a fundamental difference from the original?

They would be growing up in the present day instead of being born in 1961 like I was. Right there, things would be different experientially.

If I had to wait for my clone to grow up to the age I am now it would take 54 years and I would likely be dead before that happened or somehow miraculously be 108 years old!

On the other hand, if clones could be produced to be an exact replica much like making a photocopy of the original; BAM, Susan #2 fully grown and able to share my closet full of  clothes. That, my friends, would be a different story.

minion-1724905_1920

I think I might even get a little jealous that the second me got to take the easy way, a shortcut if you will, to getting to where I am now.

No dealing with going to school and nor having her heart broken over and over would certainly be easier.

But, if our cumulative experiences help to shape who we are this would mean my clone would be nothing like me except maybe in looks.

Okay, let’s suppose that a clone is somehow exactly like you in every way; looks, personality, attitudes, etc. How would I split the responsibilities?

This could be fun; not having  been able to dictate to anyone before. I don’t have to care how she feels about what I assign to her either, right?

Obviously, I would task her with all the cooking and cleaning. I would also get her to mend our clothes when they needed it. She would shovel the walkway clear of snow in the winter too.

In fact, she would get all the boring, repetitive, tedious jobs that are usually part of my bailiwick. This would leave me free to enjoy life for a change.

I could spend time reading, indulging in my artwork and perhaps learn a new technique or two. I would now have time to not only write my blog but produce videos for my YouTube channel too.

I think a nap every afternoon would be in order as well. I mean, why not? My life would become one of leisure and I wouldn’t feel taken for granted when it comes to keeping this household running every day.

Hubby and I could curl up on the couch and watch movies to our heart’s content as we like to do currently without one or both of us falling asleep midway through the movie like we do currently.  😉

Wait a minute…something I haven’t considered yet. Put the brakes on this whole clone thing until we get this clearly understood.

The clone would not have anything to do with my husband. I mean nothing; I can be very jealous when it comes to that sort of thing. That would be a deal breaker for sure.

Where would Susan #2 sleep anyway? I suppose we could find a closet to put a rollaway cot in if it comes to that.

rough-sleep

It would be creepy to relegate my doppelganger to that extreme of sleeping quarters but let’s face it lines have to be drawn and boundaries firmly established.

You know what? Let’s just call this whole clone experiment off. It is stressing me out too much just thinking of all the ramifications.

stop-1715720_1920

I can only imagine living with this situation. As nice as the idea of getting out of all this work is in theory, I think I would rather remain in control, thank you very much!

How about you, my friends? Would you get a clone? How would you deal with this or would you? Would you welcome a clone of yourself into your home?

Please let me know in the comments. I am curious as to what the consensus is out there in cyberspace. My thanks to you, as always, for stopping by to read my thoughts here today.

 

 

Fall Is Here & There Is Work To Do

 

It is, officially, fall here in Canada and there will be no further retractions from this blogger on the chill factor.

There will be no more swimming for us this year. Time to pack the bikini deep in my drawer until next summer.

I am hoping to lose enough weight before then to necessitate the purchase of a new bikini. 😉 LOL

There can’t be any more swimming. The pool has not been winterized it has been deconstructed.

The pool in our backyard has been standing with only minor maintenance for some twelve years. This is unheard of for above ground pools, or so I am told.

1280px-above_ground_pool

This year instead of reducing the water and covering it, in preparation for winter with all its snow and ice, the pool has been taken apart. (The pool ^ above is just an example of how one looks when prepped for winter).

I am learning a lot about what goes into putting one of these up (or conversely taking one down). So far we have emptied the water out of it completely.

That took a few days even using the gravity method. I learned our pool was fifteen feet by thirty feet and I am guessing it was four feet deep.

Let’s do the math on that…multiply length by width carry the one then add a whole bunch for the height… Wow! That is a heck of a lot of water!

You really didn’t expect me to come up with an actual figure, did you? Sorry, my math skills are not that advanced.

The liner has been removed along with the top rim that covers the raw edge of the metal. The sides have been popped out of the lower track and taken away to the side yard in one big piece.

Then it is onto the twelve side braces and dismantling them. After twelve years there was a lot of rust and a set of locking pliers were needed for assistance in undoing the bolts.

Now comes the fun part (read in a sarcastic tone of voice, if you please) of digging the metal bars and strapping, that tied this whole thing together underneath, out of the sand covering the entire area.

My back was just starting to feel better. 😦  I willingly put in the work, though, considering our landlords are awesome people who allowed us to share their pool.

Success!! Everything metal has been unearthed now. There are wide metal strips running the length of the pool, on both sides, that the side braces were attached to.

On top of that, there are metal strappings that run across the pool between the side braces. This is a latticework of sorts that is the underpinnings of the pool. Parts unseen but vital to its structure.

I am guessing the sheer weight of the water pushing at the side walls and sitting on top of the ground straps helps contain the pressure forces all around.

The pool is being removed to either replace rusted out parts or to replace the pool altogether. At this point, it is up in the air as to what will be done.

Calculations will have to be made to understand which option will be most cost effective. Either way the pool; refurbished or brand new will be moved further down the length of the deck.

The problem was that over those twelve years the freeze and thaw cycles along with accompanying frost heaves left one side of the pool lower than the other.

As a result, the pool needed to be looked after and reset in any case. After a long winter (on a side note winter always seems long) we will be erecting a pool in the spring.

oval-pool

The pool pictured above is more like the shape and size of the pool we just took apart.

A week or two ago we cleaned up the yard the way most Canadians do. Lawn furniture is put in storage, plants are covered to prevent frost damage or harvested if they are of the food variety.

Soon the outdoor hoses will be drained and put away for the season. Our patio set is still out but when the first snow comes it too will be retired to the shed for winter storage.

The early mornings and evenings are now rather chilly. The other night the low was -3 degrees Celsius. Brrrr…

This is the usual yard work that follows Thanksgiving here in Canada. People tend to close up their cottages, winterize their house trailers for the year and clean up the yard before the snow comes and buries everything.

I am looking forward to our first winter here because I won’t have the back-breaking work of shoveling off two decks and staircases every time it snows.

It just makes me shake my head in disbelief how fast this year is flying by. It is already mid-October. Next month and my birthday are not that far away now.

Then comes my husband’s birthday in December along with Christmas.

Before you know it we will be ringing in the New Year of 2017!

To end this post on a happy note we recently tried out the in floor heating.

I can’t tell you how happy my feet are and will be for the duration of the winter. What a wonderful way to heat the apartment.

Thank you for once again stopping by my blog to read my thoughts. 🙂

Have a wonderful day/night wherever you are and if fall and winter are coming to your location – stay warm my friends!

 

 

 

 

Sauntering Down Memory Lane

Lately, I have been fascinated with looking back on things that were around when I was a child. How many things do you remember? I would love to hear about it in the comments.

I thought I would share a bit of what I remember and write just a few sentences from my memory about each one.

It seems strange looking at this stuff now because a lot of it is no longer available or it has been improved upon so much that it is unrecognizable from what it looked like then.

 

14249857_1168112006614044_668811399218690106_o

This was a big thing when I was five years old.

The big box of crayons with the sharpener built in on the back was something I spent many hours using. It was something I absolutely had to have. I still remember the smell.

14238131_1167293890029189_2218289201216674077_n

“Don’t shoot your eye out”

When this movie, A Christmas Story, came out in 1983 we watched it over and over. I can still quote word for word while watching it. If the speakers on the tv give out I’m the one you want sitting there watching it with you. LOL

14237743_1162586830499895_143418051567311088_n

I remember way too many of these.

I remember numbers 1,2,3,6,7,8,14,15,and 16! I don’t remember number 11 but I do remember a mobile library that used to visit the neighborhood in Willowdale, Ontario.

14212651_1160166114075300_7191387378155260746_n-1

A&W Drive In Restaurants were the best with waitresses on roller skates.

The last A&W Drive-In Restaurant I went to was in Windsor, Ontario Canada. My ex-husband and I drove there in our 1964 Chevy Impala SS. With such an old car we felt perfectly in tune with the place.

14211940_1160143490744229_7908700848054769761_n

We used to listen to Johnny Mathis on 8 track in our RV trailer.

I remember this was mounted in the Scamper trailer we used to have when I was growing up. The tapes were big and chunky but there were a few favorites that I liked; one of which was Johnny Mathis.

14203274_1158745074217404_4826731267882422622_n

I think they still make something like this but not like they used to!

These were great! Both a necklace to wear and handy to just shove in your mouth and nibble away at the candy. Let me tell you it didn’t take me very long to strip it down to just the stretchy cord that held all those candies together.

14203209_1160159737409271_4625513746664673068_n

IBM Selectric is what you got once you mastered the Royal Manual typewriters

The Royal manual typewriters were the bane of my existence in high school. It took so much effort to get those huge keys to go down then hit the carriage return at the end of a row.

The IBM Selectrics, by comparison, were a dream to type on and took a lot less effort. Don’t get me started on the correction tape we had to use.

14202743_1153233378101907_8695923601237042623_n

This is my first memory of popsicles before you could buy them in stores, you had to make them.

Homemade popsicles were the best. Not only did the handle have that little loop to hold it by but the lid kept the dripping popsicle from running down your hand and then your arm.

14199521_1154951847930060_5874257762644332126_n

My mother had one like this. It made a lot of noise and it was hot! It did work well.

These were the first hair dryers. Now they have small, powerful handheld pistol grip ones but back in the day. this is what we used.

14199207_1160162900742288_8577216931246036652_n

Johnny Carson and Ed McMahon those two were quite the pair.

The way Johnny and Ed bantered back and forth was memorable. They really seemed like two friends that were having a great time together and we got to watch and listen in.

14199199_1156444321114146_8011643976091036691_n

That’s not a knife THIS is a knife. LOL

Ah, Crocodile Dundee, now he was a character and I used to have a slight crush on him. I think it was the fact that he was Austrailian and had a different way of looking at things.

14183947_1153248608100384_5100421824780623924_n

I remember being measured for shoes with a setup like this.

The store clerk would sit on this bench in front of you and you put your foot in that contraption on the floor. It slid in at the sides as well as front to back to measure your shoe size.

The clerk would then carry a stack of boxes to your chair and one by one put them on your feet when you put it up on that slanted platform. I felt so special getting treated like that when I was little.

Okay, so I got a little carried away with the memory thing with a few of these, so sue me. LOL Cut the old person a little slack, would you? 😉

I could spend hours on the internet looking at pictures like these; just remembering and being fascinated at how times have changed.

It also occurs to me how much I have been through. It seems like several lifetimes already although I have just the one like all of us do.

Maybe all this nostalgia is being triggered by the thought of my 55th birthday coming up next month. Where has the time gone? How did I get this old this fast?

Boy, do I feel old! Thanks for visiting my blog and sauntering down memory lane with me. What do you remember? Please let me know in the comments. I would love to hear all about it. 🙂

Seven Days To Spend

money-on-a-cat

Today’s post is inspired by a prompt from  365 days of writing prompts. This is a lot longer piece than I usually write but I am trying something new.

Please let me know in the comments what you think of this post.

Seven days 

You wake up tomorrow morning to find all your plans have been canceled for the next seven days and $10,000 on your dresser. Tell us about your week.

As the daylight starts filtering it’s way through my beige mini blinds;  I tell myself  what I do every morning without fail; I really need to get darker curtains.

Ugh, it is morning already and I was having the best dream. I really don’t want to get up yet. Oh, I might well because now I have to pee.

As I stretch and yawn trying to wake myself up, so I can traverse the distance between my bed and the toilet in the bathroom without bringing harm to any of my toes, I start to run through my plans for the day and the coming week.

When I finally swing my legs over the side of my bed and stand up I spot something on my dresser that I know for a fact was not there when I closed my eyes last night.

It is a huge bag! No, it is more than that…it is a red velvet bag tied at the top with a silky golden cord. Wait, there is an envelope resting right on top with my name on it.

What the? Who could have gotten in here without me hearing them? What is in this bag? How do they know my name? A million questions flood through my head at once.

My first thought is to grab the envelope and read because my parents always taught me to do that when it came to birthday presents (read the card first) or Christmas gifts (always read the tag first to see who it is from).

So I am conditioned to find out information first before ripping into anything. It might contain vital instructions like open from the top, or do not use a knife.

My bladder reminds me again that I need to visit the bathroom…NOW! Okay, okay I tell it in my head. I snatch the envelope and head to the toilet.

Sitting there I feel the relief as I open the envelope. Darn! I hate it when people seal envelopes shut. That is so annoying because I don’t want to risk tearing the paper or card inside.

Who keeps a letter opener in the bathroom anyway? I work at getting my fingernail under the one end of the glued flap where the envelope isn’t quite sealed.

Ah, success, I have managed to rip the flap open about a third of the way across. From here I insert my finger and savagely rip it open the rest of the way.

Upon pulling the folded sheets of paper out and opening them up I read what is written on them in a perfectly formed cursive script.

Dearest Susan, Please forgive the abruptness of how you found this package and note. I could not risk you finding me placing it there on your dresser. There would be too many questions and I wanted you to discover it just the way you are now.

There would be too many questions and I wanted you to discover it just the way you are now. Please allow me to introduce myself.

My name is Kendra Jackson. I am a wealthy billionaire and this is a social experiment of sorts that I am inviting you to participate in. 

I have arranged to leave this $10,000. on your dresser to see what you will do with it. Will you be generous and share it with one or more people? Will you keep it all for yourself?

I am eager to see how you handle this dilemma; what will you do with all this money? Your schedule has been cleared for the entire week. My people have arranged it to be so in order for you to do what you feel you must with this cash. 

You have one week to complete this task. You must use the entire $10,000. either giving some or all of it away or putting some or all of it in your bank account. Either way, all of it must be used.

At the end of the week; I will write you another note and leave it here in the same place on your dresser with further instructions.

Wow! I have been blown away and a flurry of thoughts fly through my brain while I try to digest the contents of this note.

Hastily I finish in the bathroom and hurry back to my bedroom; partially to get dressed but mostly to open the bag and see this money for myself. I need to be sure it is real.

This feels like a wild dream and I am not even sure I am awake right now. I test this by pinching my own arm. Ouch! Nope, I am definitely awake, that hurt!

I throw on some warm clothes, the weather is starting to get chilly, and grab that silky golden cord on the bag and uncinch it to open it up.

Yes, there before me are 10 bundles of $100. Canadian currency with 10 notes per bundle.Confirmed all $10,000. is there.

Looking at it all leaves me a little light headed. I have never seen this much in one place before. Think, Susan, what are you going to do with it all?

Today is Saturday so I have until next Saturday morning to spend/keep or give away $10,000. cash. I shake my head in disbelief that I have been given this opportunity.

Sure, I have a generous personality and will usually put others needs before my own but with this amount of money I can really do some good for myself too.

Until now I have always worked with a very tight budget and do the best I can. This, though, gives me a chance to do so much more or do I stash it all in my bank account and not ever be stressed out about bills month after month?

This last is so tempting and I wonder what it would be like to just live instead of always having a calculator in my head every moment of the day and night trying to figure out if I will run out of month first or money first.

I decided to keep a diary of what I do with the money with daily entries to document where it goes and keep a running total. I have copied it below so you can see how my week goes.  

Out to the kitchen, I go, to put on a pot of tea. This requires some serious thinking and planning and I need a tea to properly wake up and think clearly.

Saturday $10,000.

The first $1,000. is going to the local food bank. I put the cash in a plain envelope and donate it anonymously.

I have used their services more than I care to admit and giving back even a portion just feels right, feels good.

Sunday $9,000.

The second $1,000. is left, again anonymously, in an envelope in the collection tray as it passes by me at the church I go to every Sunday morning at 11 a.m.

Tithing is important to me and God only asks for 10% of what you have with offerings or donations to ministries above and beyond that.

10% of $10,000. is $1,000. The math makes sense in my head and it makes me smile to be able to give the proper amount.

Monday $8,000.

I have decided to buy my friends and family something special. One item for each of them that I have always wanted to get them but could never afford to.

Shopping is a lot of fun when you don’t need to worry about what the taxes will bring the total to. Likewise, you needn’t concern yourself with what the price tag says either.

I won’t detail here what I purchased for them. I don’t want to give away any surprises after all. LOL The receipts all total up to $2,411.25.

Now to get them all wrapped and delivered. There goes another $242.30 in postage fees. The clerk at the post office was astounded when she saw all the parcels coming in at one time.

Tuesday $5,346.45

Next, comes the donations to various charities that are near and dear to my heart. The top two being The Heart And Stroke Foundation and The Alzheimer’s Society.

I deposit $2,000. into my bank account and write the cheques to send off. My top two get $500. each (in my Dad’s name) and I choose four other charities and divvy up the remaining $1,000. between them at $250. each.

I think funding research into eliminating these devastating diseases is so important. I wish I could afford to give to them every year but my cheque  is usually just enough to live on.

Wednesday $3,346.45

This is fun figuring out what to do with all this money but I must admit I panic a little when I see the balance going down, down, down.

I hope I am spending it the right way and am concerned that I will run out before I do all that I hope to with it.

Today I stayed home and carefully considered what to do with what remains. Besides I am a little overwhelmed and need to rest.

Thursday $3,346.45 (still)

I have decided to splurge a little on myself. Having given away the majority of the money now it is time to pay some attention to my wants too.

Normally, I don’t spend on things for myself. It is enough to make sure my rent and bills are paid and there is food in the house.

I visited my favorite jewelry store in the mall and picked out the most beautiful diamond and 14K white gold ring. In the center is my birthstone, a citrine, and the setting is tasteful and not too big and gaudy.

I have been dreaming of one day affording this ring and had pretty much given up hope it would ever become a reality.

The price of this trinket? $1,725.80 The way I look at it is this is an investment at the same time.

Gold prices keep going up and should I ever need to I could sell it or pawn it to get emergency cash, but only if I absolutely had to.

Friday $1,620.65

The remaining money goes to my creditors. I really like the idea of living debt free. It is like the weight of the world is off my shoulders finally.

My debts are cleared and I now have a clean slate; a new lease on life. I think I spent the money well. I spread it around a fair number of places.

I feel guilty for spending any of it on myself, though. I am not used to doing that and it feels wrong somehow.

Saturday (again) $0.00

It is Saturday again and the week seems to have flown by. I jump out of bed and make a beeline to my dresser. There, true to her word, is an envelope with my name on it is that same cursive script.

This time, the envelope flap is simply folded in. I suddenly feel very exposed. Did I say that I hate it when people seal envelopes out loud on the toilet last Saturday, or just think it?

Sliding the pages easily out of the envelope, this time, I begin to read.

Susan, I am aware of where and how you spent the $10,000. I left for you last week. I am very pleased. You have shown a great awareness of what is important in this life.

You seem to have struck just the right balance between philanthropic causes and enriching the lives of those around you. I am glad to see you bought that ring as well. We all need a little something to make us happy. 

You will not have to ever sell it or pawn it for quick money. Please deposit this cheque for $500,000. in your bank account; I don’t want you to ever worry about money again.

Now that I have seen how you handle it I know that you will do good things with your newfound wealth. With warmest regards, Kendra

I fell back on my bed clutching the cheque and her letter to my chest and cried like a baby. The stress is completely gone…so this is how it feels to just breathe. 🙂