Grandma Says..

Observations and views from a different set of eyes

Packing On The Pounds


A couple of weeks ago, I stepped on the scale and screamed.  I knew I had packed on a few pounds lately…I just wasn’t aware that I had gained so much weight!  I sat down and went through the five stages that mark any shocking revelation I meet.

Denial…the dryer is shrinking my clothes again.  Bad Dryer!

Anger…it’s Danny’s fault for asking me to bake all those goodies.  He knows I can’t resist a fresh-baked brownie!

Bargaining…I’ll give up the sweets if I can keep my pasta!

Depression…(this is also known as a Pity Party around this house)…I feel so lousy about gaining weight that I’ll just stuff this pastry in my mouth.

Acceptance…the pounds must go.

So, I considered my options.  Weight Watchers was of course the first thing to pop into my mind.  While it’s a very good program…I don’t have time to go to “weigh-ins” with the other woman in my weight bracket and try to yell “Yahoo!” when I shed 1/2 pound.  Nope, that’s not the way to go for me.

The second option was for me to just cut all the sweets, potatoes, and pasta…basically, I would stuff my face with “rabbit food”…lettuce…more lettuce…and even more lettuce with a small portion of meat with it.  I had tried this diet before and had absolutely no success.  Danny would find me in the cake plate in the middle of the night with German chocolate cake jammed in my mouth and cake crumbs tumbling off my chin.

“I was sleep walking!” I would tell him.

“You were sleep stuffing” he would answer.

The third choice was to go out and find a sensible weight loss plan and stick to it. So, I looked on the Internet and found a great site called Spark People and started a 1200-1500 calorie diet.  The FREE program comes with a great tracking system that breaks down your intake into carbs, fat and proteins and lets you eat regular food.  Not a hell of a lot of it, but it’s teaching me about portion control and sensible eating habits!

Of course, many foods I love would consume my daily calorie allowance in one bite, so I have had to make some sacrifices.  But, I’m committed to losing these unwanted pounds since my back and legs cannot tolerate the extra load.

And, of course, I had to get off my lazy butt and start an exercise regimen.  Ugh…I hate exercise!  WITH A PASSION!  But, since I don’t believe a word that Dr. Oz says about all those magical pills that turn you into a svelte size ten in ten days…I knew I had to start walking.  Walking is something I have only done in the past when absolutely necessary…like getting to my car fifty feet from my front door.

The first day I struck out into the open walkways, I felt a little embarrassed by the family of turtles that sped by me.  But, I soldiered on and now I walk a mile a day in 30 minutes and am hoping to increase that to two miles by next week.  I’m determined to wipe those smiles off those turtles!

After seven days of dieting, it was time to step on the scale.  This was the moment that would decide if I wanted to continue with the diet or just settle back with a Twinkie in my hand and say “The hell with it!”

To my delight, three pounds have been left by the roadside!  Happy Dance!

Now, on day ten, I find that the diet isn’t so hard, the walking is actually becoming something I look forward to and my dream of fitting into my “skinny” jeans by November just might happen after all.

Wish me luck!


Still Alive And Kicking!


I guess Mark Twain said it best when he stated “The reports of my death have been greatly exaggerated.”  I’ve been out of the blogging world for a few weeks and some of my readers have been quite concerned.  Was I quitting?  Was I ill?  Was I no longer in the here and now?

No, my friends, Cranky is still alive and kicking.  Some really traumatic family issues were going on with two of my sons… these issues left me empty, hurting and barely able to write my own name.  But, life has moved on and the issues are being addressed so I now find I have climbed out of that deep dark hole I’ve spent the last few weeks in.

I’m not to the point when I can relate to you what happened yet.  Someday…just not right now.  But, be assured that I am back and here to stay!  I’m a survivor and my friends here are my lifeline to sanity…so I will never desert you!

Thank you to all who have stood by me and keep visiting…even when I’ve had nothing to say!  You Rock!

So, I’ll be catching up with all of you over the next few weeks.  I do want to apologize to those followers of “Paying It Forward” who have not seen a new post in the past two weeks.  It’s not that I’m stopping that series…I just couldn’t give justice to the post when I was feeling so down.  This coming Wednesday will see a new “Pay It Forward” on my sister site “A Dream Come True” and hopefully, there will be no more obstacles to keeping the series up to date.

But, again, I have to thank you all for your comments and concerns regarding my absence…love you all!



Ionia is as Ionia Does

Send your good wishes Ionia’s way! This strong lady is getting ready to kick cancer in the butt. Let’s show our support!

Fiction Favorites



Ionia Martin; ioniamartin is a special friend to many writers. She gives encouragement, straight feedback and sometimes a boot in the butt. She always gives the kind of support that a writer needs at the time. When a writer is down; she pulls them up. When a writer is up; she boosts them higher. Her words are always meant to help and never hurt. She is tolerant of those with developing talent yet, unflinchingly critical of those out for personal gain at others expense. She could be called: Big Sister, Leader, Boss, Queen, and to those very special to her, Friend. In short; Ionia is a wonderful person who deserves the best life has to offer.

Tomorrow is a big day for Ionia with projected positive results. To help the positive trend it would be nice if everyone could just think of her tomorrow and say to yourself, “go Ionia.” You can…

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A House Is Not Always A Home


The heat here in Florida has been stifling…so Danny and I decided to take a ride by the beach.  I love these little excursions as I get to look at all the McMansions sitting along the road.

We play a little game called “Which one is Steve’s house” in which we drive down the road that Stephen King has a winter house and guess which one the King of Horror lives in. Of course, Mr. King gives no clues: there are no vampires looking out the windows, there aren’t rabid dogs running to greet us and there isn’t a clown in sight. So, based on what we know about his house (which is close to nothing) we try to guess which one he roosts in during the northern winter months.

Here’s the one I think it is…


Why do I think this is the one?  It’s simple, its got enough room for Tabitha to write on one floor while he writes on another and it’s empty (since summer is here, I’m sure he’s enjoying Maine’s cooler temps.)  The Armed Security sign kept us from peeking around and I didn’t want to spend the day getting bonded out for trespassing, so I’ll just keep my conviction that this is where he lives.

We left his road and proceeded to drive down the scenic route that takes us past homes that are hard to imaging living in, such as this one…


Okay, guys and gals, although we all dream of living the life of the Great Gatsby, would you really feel at home in this huge, huge house?  I know I wouldn’t want to clean it and I’d probably spend half my day searching for Danny in this bad boy.  I probably don’t have enough friends to fill the entryway, never mind the living room.

We did find a touch of Florida at one of the homes in the driveway of this one…


No, not the luxury car..the golf cart is the new “in” way to travel around the beaches as long as the batteries don’t run out.

At the end of this long, long ride around the shores of the Gulf Of Mexico, I am reminded once again why I love Florida.  The beautiful sea and skies make for a stunning view from any place along the shore.


And for us that can’t afford one of those McMansions (which we jealously refer to them as) we always have access to the public beaches and you can frolic to your heart’s delight (as long as you follow the rules on this..)


You’ve all seen these..the signs that say don’t do anything but enjoy yourself while you’re doing it!  Anyway, we poor folk do love our beaches here and as you can see, the weekend is a great time to head to the Intercoastal Waterway as seen here…


Well, too soon our ride was over and we headed back to our simple little house.  I sat down and thought about all those beautiful houses, but wondered if they were really a home.  I can’t imagine myself living in one since I need a sense of closeness around me…my family, my friends and my dog would be swallowed hole in one of these houses.  So, even though they are great to look at, I’ll kick my feet up here and be glad for the simple things in life.

So, my friends, when you look at the pictures, you can decide for yourself whether these houses look like a home for you.  Me?  I’ll stay where I am, thank you very much.


Be It Ever So Simple

There’s No Place Like Home

Enjoy the rest of the weekend.  Oh, and by the way, I can’t leave without proof that the photographer of all the pictures, except the cartoon and the last photo, was ME!  Only I could get a picture of me in the sideview mirror…don’t worry…this is why I write and don’t take pictures!


Happy Sunday!



Which way do I go?

Help an old writer out and pick an ending for me!

A Dream Come True


I’ve always trusted my followers and readers suggestions and have treasured each one.  My beta readers for my novel are awesome: honest, clear and supportive.  Comments on both my posts have always been spot on and I read each one with respect.

And, now I’m once more reaching out for your help.

I have written a short story…with two different endings…and I cannot decide which ending would appeal more to a reader (and publisher).  Due to publishing restrictions, I can only give you a brief synopsis of the story and hope you can give me some help with my decision.

1.  An aging reporter is being edged out by a younger reporter.

2.  She needs a big “scoop” on a series of murders so she can regain her previous status as a crime reporter.

3.  Events lead her to believe that she has found the killer but needs more…

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Friday Challenge ~ I NEED YOU!!

Join the fun!

The Paperbook Blog

Hey everyone,

One of the fabulous contributors to issue one of The Paperbook Collective has just given me a fabulous idea.

You do that sometimes.

Ok, a lot of the time.

She emailed me the most incredible picture of The Paperbook Collective open on her computer screen. But it wasn’t just that, the picture also featured her awesome desk, the music she was listening to and her drink of choice.

I was blown away.

It is so amazing to think about this magazine being read around the world, but then I thought, wouldn’t it be even better if you could actually SEE it being read around the world?

So this is where you come in guys.

Email me a picture of your computer with The Paperbook Collective open on the screen. Send it through

Here are the links to make it easier:


The Paperbook Collective_Issue One2013


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Paying It Forward – 8/7/2013

A dedicated group of bloggers who want to spread the love.

A Dream Come True


First I have to apologize for posting this so late today.  I got caught up in a new story I’m writing and time just slipped away.  But, better late than never and I will reblog this tomorrow so more readers will see it.

This week’s post is dedicated to a group of people who I hold near and dear.  Being a child of the sixties, I only had to be invited once to join Bloggers For Peace before I jumped in with both feet.

This site has one purpose: to promote peace…whether it be in the world, in your neighborhood or in your family.  They ask members for one post a month with the theme “Peace” in the story.  I love being a part of this band of peaceniks and always enjoy reading the posts that they come up with.

Kozo Hattori’s blog site Everyday Gurus tracks the posts and…

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Celebration Time!

It’s a big day for Cranky!

A Dream Come True


I am so ready to celebrate!  Why?  Yesterday, I received an acceptance letter from Storyteller Magazine.  They will be publishing my story “The Lady and the Con” in the next quarterly issue.  Yes, people, another milestone has been reached.  I wanted to be published in print and now that is going to become a reality!  I can’t begin to describe the excitement and joy I feel right now.

If you’ve been following my journey towards being a published writer and then a published novelist; you’re aware that I set specific milestones that I want to reach.

My first was to be published, anywhere, any venue, any time.  The thrill I received when my first story was accepted by Alphie Dog Fiction was hard to put into words.  I have now published three stories on this site and am working on the next one.

My next milestone was to be…

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It’s A Jungle Out There


You might remember that we spent quite some time building what we dubbed our Tranquility Garden.  Well, evidently we might have to rethink the name of our little spot since it’s been anything but tranquil since we finished it.

Our first visitor was a poor little frog.  Confused by the demolition of his pond, he spends hours on our lanai, trying to enter the garden through the screen.  I have relocated him several times, only to find him in the morning once again trying to climb through the screen.


He just doesn’t get it!

Then, last week, a serpent slithered into our garden, probably trying to find the apple tree.  He finally departed, failing to find two naked paradise dwellers and now I worry about how he got in.


This morning, we found a new traveler looking for some piece and quiet.  A tired little bat, looking for a dark spot to rest in until he can attack me in the dark, checked in this morning and is still flying around the pool area.


I have been searching for a small bench for the new garden so that I can (when this damn heat goes away) sit and read peacefully while enjoying the tranquility of our new little garden.  Well, that search has ended, since I have no desire to sit in a spot waiting for a frog to jump on me, a snake to wind around my legs and a bat to fly in my hair.

A few weeds have popped up in the garden and I asked Danny this morning if he would mind removing them.  He asked, “Why don’t you do it?”

My answer–“Because it’s a jungle out there!”

Author’s note:  The dancing gorillas doing the “River Dance” really have nothing to do with this post.  I just fell in love with them and put them in anyway! 🙂


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