Another day is dawning,  memories to be made, impressions to leave, moments unchangeable.IMG_0756

As the day begins, as the next step is about to happen, the next minute here among us, I am thinking about life and the effects we have on it.


RESPONSIBILITY:  We all are responsible for our actions. This goes for every single thing we do. We can not choose which things we do we are and are not responsible for. Nope, we own each thing we do.

That is a huge responsibility. Why, because sometimes the things we do, we don’t even realize or think about the end result, we get wrapped up in a moment or jump on the proverbial “bandwagon”. However, as we travel down the twists and turns of life’s journey,  and at the end of our road in life, it is us and us alone who individually made choices.

I say this because of many reasons, many reasons I myself have chosen to do things, and once they were done, well there was no rewind, no “gee I didn’t mean to be that way, or “I didn’t mean to do that” or “I didn’t mean to _______”.  The “I wish I had” thoughts do not count.

There have been things I have said, I can not take back. Actions I did, I can not undo. As a nurse, I have cared for patients who would say, “I knew better” or “If I only had never smoked” or “I took the chance ____”   Notice the similarity– “If I only had not or didn’t”

My parents would say to me when I did something I totally should not have, “You know better than that” or ” Bet you won’t do that again” or “what did you learn from that?”. And as I was growing up, she would wipe the wound ( physical or not) and guide me through the why’s and maybe even have suggestions on how to deal with that scenario in the future. They were preparing me for my future.

As we grow up we are still responsible for our actions. There are consequences to what is done, said, or ignored. If any of us are asked to do something and we say we will, if we then do it halfway, or not appropriately – if we take a risk, a dare—- we cannot go back and get those minutes to undo it.

In our roles in life, ( being a friend, an adult, a mentor, a stranger, a human being ) whether at work or in any environment around us, writing anything in social media, in an article,  we can not take it back. It paints a picture of us that can not be painted over, the “delete” does not remove words or photos or actions done.

Our reactions to something said or done, we can not undo that either. In life I have found to tread softly at times, to think before doing or saying, and to appreciate and take responsibility to every minute I am on this earth.

What image are we giving? What actions are we doing? What consequences because of those actions, or lack of actions are there? What image have I left?

Those are my thoughts this morning, something I will remember as I get ready for another day to be the best I can be.

Until later, Mrs Justa alias Cindy


On any given day, I can look out the window and think “Oh look, the sun is up”…. period… But no- there is more… see beyond the noticing 20181205_073949of the sunrise in the quiet of things in front of me was a glistening world of diamond-like sparkles. A cold crisp early morning gift, a gift that many may have not seen, a gift that can turn into a snowy plain ol day. 20181205_074029





Yet, right there for all to see, a refreshing light show of sparkling colors.

It brought once again to mind thought about life. How when we are faced with things that seem monumental, we look at the proverbial mountain ( or in this case maybe a quick noticing the sun is rising) and we are overwhelmed at the tasks at hand at the end of a particular journey. Sometimes it is easier to dwell on that obstacle, which takes us longer to put it behind us.

Life can feel like it is hard at times, life is full of mountains to climb, sometimes valleys to drudge through. Plenty of times I have slipped on the proverbial mountain wandered off the proverbial path and had to retrace my steps, maybe find a slightly less challenging path to go on.

There was one person in my life that told me once she never had challenges in life. I remember thinking “heck let me share some with you” but I did not offer, and she never asked to take a few from me, so I have gone on in life realizing that at least for me, challenges exist, they can be heart wrenching, they can be touch and we conquer them one by one step at a time.

person wearing shirt standing near tree

Photo by Alex Smith on Pexels.com

As I look back at this person who said this to me, as I came to know her a tad bit more many yrs ago, I now wonder- maybe just maybe she had the ability to look at those diamond-like crystals, and not just at that sunrise from afar. I think that because I truly believe we ALL face moments when life has tried to knock us down.

Maybe this person was able to anticipate but not look for that next roadblock or detour on her journey of life. If we know that challenges will lie ahead, but if we look at them as not roadblocks but the way the path takes us, then maybe we too can feel that life has been good, no matter what part of our journey we are on.

I, myself, and going to try to work on this. As I take each next step on this road of life, I will anticipate some bumps and hairpin curves, knowing the road will straighten up. To now look so far ahead, but to look at now and a few feet ahead. Not so much only living for today,, but planning for tomorrow and in those plans, the “challenges” will become part of the process.

OK, I am off to try this out, Until alter… Mrs Justa alias Cindy




I guess I never thought about this until I heard it a whole bunch of times in different settings this Thanksgiving weekend.

I saw myself doing it, and also heard it done to others. First, let me say all the social media outlets CAN BE wonderful when used as a means to give many “friends, family and acquaintances” the same bullet point information at one time. A way to create a page not yet colored in that person’s life.

Let’s say you graduated or had a baby or an exciting time at _______,  it is to share an extremely tough time or the passing of a person that you would never have known about, or a way to type in a verse or 2 about the loss you have endured. It is something, some time had it not been shared on f.b., twitter, or any of the others outlets to communicate.


It is a great way to share photos of a gathering many attended, or maybe that perfect moment you stumbled on. Those times when without sharing on social media, well it would never have been experienced in a very 2D way.

Looking at this picture- one that was probably on a facebook post, it shows a wedding, but without the personal touch, the conversation, the painting done with words, there is so much more that can fill in the outline of a “wedding”

If, however, someone starts face to face- or voice to voice on the phone- about something- well that is the beginning of an opportunity to converse. They want to make that 2D, quick blurb into a 3D moment. Voices, faces they add expression to the time they are referring to, or to the sad or happy moment captured and shared. That person wanted to put color into the social media bullet point. We ( and I can not count the times I did it) can stop the conversation, we can keep that moment just a bullet point in time, we can portrait we do not really care by interrupting- or making our first ( and often our last) response by saying ” Yeah , I already know” or “Yeah,I saw it on f.b.” .

Now if the same person starts the conversation and mentions they also had it on Facebook, ( or whatever media they put it on) we need to stop and listen. That conversation you are about to be blessed with, well it adds the personal component.

Or if you see that person, you could always start the conversation with that tidbit of their life they shared. An opportunity to bring a personal touch to a moment they shared on facebook. That can be a great time to show you care and want to hear more.

We will never ever know what we missed if we close that opportunity to have color added to social media bullet points if we stop the conversation before the colors fill in the moment in their life.

My mission for today and going forward is to let the other person not only bring up the topic but to let them take that outline, that bullet point, and add their words to it, their nonverbals, their feelings.

Until later, Mrs. Justa/ alias Cindy


There was a very popular song from the mid-1970s that Paul Anka had done and Kodak used it as an advertising jingle. The lyrics are very meaningful to me- and as I take photographs and look at photos from times gone by, as I reminisce on times captured in the Windows or my mind and heart, well this melody and its’  words- it plays in my head.

“Good morning, yesterday
You wake up and time has slipped away
And suddenly it’s hard to find
The memories you left behind
Remember, do you remember?

The laughter and the tears
The shadows of misty yesteryears
The good times and the bad you’ve seen
And all the others in between
Remember, do you remember
The times of your life? ………..

Reach out for the joy and the sorrow
Put them away in your mind
The memories are times that you borrow
To spend when you get to tomorrow

The seasons are passing one by one
So gather moments while you may
Collect the dreams you dream today
…….. will you remember
The times of your life?

Do you remember the times of your life?”

For me, as this weekend with family enters its last day and a half, the June-2013-029_thumb.jpgmoments already created and those yet to come, I want to remember the laughter, the realization that we were all placed in the places we are now, because of the roads we have traveled. My wish is that everyone has those moments, those “TImes of Your Life”, that can play over and over again as the days become moments in our journey, little monuments or landscapes.

Until later, Mrs. Justa alias Cindy

I was thinking this past week about learning something new or doing something repetitively and what is the end result.

Last weekend, we had the Black Belt Ceremony I mentioned a few posts back. Those individuals did not just wake up one morning and poof could work in synchronization with a stage full of other, they couldn’t make those moves and stay focused just by thinking about it.

This thought surfaces a lot to me. Everywhere we go, what we see, our jobs, our walking, driving, interactions, those improve often by doing them over and over again. This becomes even deeper of a thought when we get into every day.

I was reminded the other day of our day to day life. While I was in a waiting room, I overheard a person say on her cell phone that she prefers to text people, and not have them call her. She said to the person on the phone something about being more comfortable communicating that way, she can put down what she wants without to SAY.

That comment she made, well it made me think about all the things we have at our fingertips to make life easier, to be able to move at a faster pace. Each thing has its benefits- however, they should not replace the more personal, hands-on, practicing talent, task, interactions or skill.

When I have been trained, and when I have trained others. The teaching included showing the pieces to the action being taught, having the other demonstrate the action/ talent/ skill being taught, and letting the trainee do it themselves over and over again, but having the steps checked until it is assured they know it more naturally. I currently am going through one of those teachings, showing and demonstrating times in my life. Learning a new role at work, listening, taking notes, seeing it done, and having the “baton” passed so I can demonstrate I am becoming more comfortable and confident in each step. As the days pass, and I look back a couple months, I realize how far I have come, yet am realistic at the journey ahead as more processes and steps are introduced and one day become something I am proficient at. 20160826_104327

Even though life is like that, we need to make darn sure before we take the “easy” way, we have personally become comfortable in a more personal way. We need also to understand practice makes us more proficient. From learning how to walk, and being able to walk… to learning how to add, subtract, speak in an intellectual conversation, cook, doing a game, reading a book, the list is infinite.

Virtual meetings, training, communicating makes so much of life so much better. We can jot a thought in an instant message at 2AM, and the other person can get it whenever they are awake…  Yet, there is a fine line when we could realize that our personal relationships, our whole life has become virtual. If life gets to a point when we could move away, go to a different city, state, country, and our life would be the same, no one would even know we moved, that is a  message that we have not only taken advantage of the virtual life conveniences, we have let them take over us.

When was the last time you …. fill in the blank? And if the power was off / the internet down/ ( that list goes on and on too) … do you know how to improvise?

When was the last time you looked into a personal eyes and spoke – face to face? When was the last time you touched a deck of cards or held a book? Have you ever done a no electronics evening or weekend?

Even though the modern conveniences make life able to be more productive, more chaotic, more impersonal, we need to stop and not let it replace the 3D life we are blessed with. I would rather hold a child’s hand, then hold a cell phone and screen chat.IMG_3468 I would rather sit at a table and play a game of ( the list is so long… ie: cards, Yahtzee, Scrabble, Sorry, Trouble….. and on and on) than to only ever play it on my electronic device.

Yes, the books on our electronic devices are great, and being able to do a 1000 piece puzzle and never worry about that one lost piece or someone messing it up… those are all great. I just do not to ever become so dependent on the “no touch” that it becomes me.

As this weekend begins, I am looking forward to what the day will bring, who will I personally see face to face? Who will I talk to and not type my words to? What will I do that is hands on? What will I remember more vividly because of those one to one moments? I am off to experience life and all there is in the minutes ahead.

Until later, Mrs Justa alias Cindy





Continuing on the subject of words. I wanted to share a time from long ago.

We lived in Spafford NY in my first few yrs of elementary school. We had one car and my dad was a traveling salesman. So living FAR away from the school did not leave an option for our mom driving us.

It was a long bus ride, and it brings back fun and not so fun times. One thing was our last name became the laughing subject for the first few miles of each journey. We would no sooner get on the bus and certain kids would ask if we have Gaines Gravy Train for dinner gravey train pouting pupand if we eat it dry in the morning. Their pals would wait for a reaction as they laughed at the words said and gravey trainobserved to see if they got a reaction.

We would tell mom about the trip, but what really could she do, but provide advice and call the bus garage. So her words of wisdom ( and I say that with the sincerest most meaning of the words) she said just stand tall, be proud and say back:  “Sticks and stones can break my bones, but names will never hurt me”

Well, I gotta tell ya, that had a nice ring to it, but really did not do anything to stop the name mocking. Nope just kinda fueled the laughter as people said things like “What was that can you say it again?” And me – in my proud Gaines Family fashion would repeat it.

What changed was Pam and I became able to hide the sadness and dislike, and that, and only that slowed down the mocking. It never totally went away because “Gaines Dog Food ” folks were coming up with cute adds and more products. gaines burgersWe advanced to questions like “Did you have burgers last night… GAINES BURGERS?”

Yep, words can be powerful, and being I woke up this morning with the kid’s laughter running through my mind, I felt it needed to be shared.

Lesson learned from this, as a parent I was listening for mention from our kids, and if there was any hint of something like this happening to them, I worked to explain that when we react to words, we are giving strength to the people calling you a name. If you react, the others have found a way to annoy you. DO not react, as hard as that is, and their game is no longer anything more than solitaire. Their words come out and get lost in space.

As I move into today, I hope the day is good for you. Words can be so powerful.

Until later, Mrs Justa alias Cindy

Words are very powerful. Words can inspire a person to go further, to try to find the next step, to get up the next day. Words from a child are so precious, words to a child can help to create thoughts and inspire them to explore, to learn.

Wooriginal_file_homerds in our lives, some flow through and we are unaffected by them. Others though, they are stopped in the heart, the soul, and can create wonderful things to happen.

Words are also very powerful, and once said, we can not take them back. We can not dash over and block them from being heard. My life’s lessons have taught me many things, little things and not so little. One of the messages embedded in my being is that it is so important to think before I speak ( or write).

Once I release a word or series of them, I can not retrieve them. And so it is also true that once words are said to another, that other person has them, and it is they who receive them and how they perceive the words are meant.

So as today begins, I am focusing on the words from me, and remembering that a word can be as soft as a fluffy pillow, or sharper than the sharpest knife, only owned by me until I release them. It is a lesson in life I truly believe some people have discarded, or ignored, and others have become proficient in the art or using words.

Think back for a moment, what words have been said to you, that are now saved in gold in your heart and mind.  As the day begins, as each next day of our lives go on, what words do we want to be remembered by someone else, for the rest of their lives? Words are a powerful tool.

Until the next post… Mrs Justa alias Cindy

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