The Bunnies Are Running 2022

A few weeks ago, I published a post about Lent and my spiritual goals for this time of repentance and preparation for the celebration of Christ’s Resurrection. I am happy to report that my Lenten work is coming along well. In addition to the goals I set for myself, Max and I have been reading and praying along with a program of devotionals that one of my church friends shared. I was, weirdly, looking forward to Lent this year and God is taking me in good places.

Now… for the lighter side of Lent.

You have all heard of Elf on the Shelf. You probably also know that Max and I play Elf on the Shelf each December. He hides my elf, Kringle, each morning and I hunt for him. Some of you may remember last year’s natural extension of this game- Bun on the Run. I have TEN bunnies running loose in my house because bunnies are prolific creatures, and I am unable to restrain myself at Hobby Lobby. The biggest bunnies, Arabella and Archibald are the mommy and daddy bunnies. They are each about the size of an extra-large egg. There are four itsy bitsy babies- Eenie, Meenie, Miney, and Mo. These critters are each about the size of a shooter marble. Their slightly older siblings- Wynken, Blynken, Nod, and Tumble- are somewhere in between in size. Each morning in Lent, a bunny goes running and it is up to me to find it. Because Max is a very methodical guy, he rotates the order in which he hides the bunnies. Archibald and Arabella are relatively easy to find because of their size. The four newborns are extremely challenging. Max gives me hints when I get stuck.  Eventually, given enough clues, I am bound to stumble upon a stealth bunny.

For the first time EVER since the elfing and the bunnying has begun, Max stumped me this season. Miney, one of the newborns, seems to be particularly wily in getting himself into mischievous positions. The last time Miney hid, he hid so well that I finally had to give up. I am sharing three pictures here so you can see if you can find Miney.

Tink doll front on view
Tink side view
close up of Tink and Miney, the stealth bunny

Give up? Miney is hiding in Tinker Bell’s wings. Yowza. I am sure I would still be hunting if I had not cried uncle. Max was quite pleased with himself… and Miney’s hiding prowess.

Someday, someone is going to take away my adult card.

What crazy, child-like (or childish) things do you do that might jeopardize your adult card? Please share your perspective by leaving a comment. In the alternative, you can email me at

Terri/Dorry 😊

Rock of Aged

Max and I went to see a Billy Joel concert the other night with some very good friends. We are all “people of a certain age.” As you might expect, given that the performer was Billy Joel (and Billy Joel is 72 years old), most of the audience were contemporaries of ours. Some were younger, and some were just trying to be younger.

I cannot remember the last time I went to a full-on rock concert in an outside stadium. I think it was probably some time around 1985. Since this was another lifetime ago, I did not expect to know how things worked. Luckily, our friends set the whole thing up- bought the tickets, drove to the venue, and found parking. This relieved me of some of the stress of “being responsible” for everyone’s enjoyment. I could just wait and  see what it would be like to view the concert with 70,000 other fans.

I dressed in my rocker chick chic outfit- black jeans, black boots, and a sparkly blouse. I took great care with my makeup, hair, and jewelry.  I felt a little bit badass.

Our tickets said that the show started at 8:00pm. The doors were supposed to open at 6:30 and the parking lots were supposed to open at 4:30. We, of course, planned to be there very early. We decided not to go out to dinner because we did not want to risk missing anything. We bought Subway sandwiches before we left our neighborhood and decided to eat them in the car in the parking lot. It would be a sort of “tailgate” tailgate party. Another other interesting thing we learned before we went to the stadium were that we could not bring in any normal-sized purse or handbag. Based on the acceptable dimensions on the venue’s website, an allowable bag would be so tiny that even my phone would not fit in it. I decided to go with option 2- a clear plastic gallon-size Ziplock bag. This accessory did not exactly go with my rocker chick vibe, but at least I could carry my essentials.

I do not think having this kind of restriction on bags was in keeping with the demographic of the audience. Most of the women were conditioned, after 50 years of being “pack mule mommas” to fill their purses with every possible thing their children or significant other might need to protect them from catastrophe. Also, given the age of most of the audience, it seemed likely that the only drugs we were trying to hide were prescription arthritis, diabetes, and blood thinner medications. At one point, I thought I smelled weed, but it was probably someone smoking medical marijuana.

The venue also did not permit visitors to bring umbrellas into the stadium. It is freakin’ Florida! Earlier in the day, there had been almost monsoon level rainstorms. We just hit a lucky patch in that the skies cleared by late afternoon. If the rain had come in the evening, when it usually does, an umbrella prohibition would have been serious business.

My rocker chick chic persona did not last very long. I had to zip up my furry black coat against the cold. The temperature was unseasonably cold for central Florida in March, with a wicked wind. I am sure the promoters never expected an arctic blast to descend on the Camping World stadium in Orlando, Florida. We old people in Florida typically travel with sweaters to take off the air conditioning chill in restaurants. Even I, who almost always run hot, was freezing the night of the concert. With my black jacket zipped up, I no longer displayed any sight of my sparkly blouse. I looked like an old lady, which, of course, I am.

Even on the stage, Billy Joel immediately donned a stocking cap over his bald head after his initial introduction. By three songs into his set, he added a woolen scarf. By the second half of the concert, his back-up singer was wearing a towel over her head and shoulders to keep her vocal cords warm.

I figured that the concert would start at 8:00pm, since this was the time advertised. We parked at around 5:00pm and got in line to get into the stadium at around 6:00pm. The process was actually quite easy. Then we sat. And sat. And sat some more. I guess everyone is supposed to know that rockers are just kidding when they state a start time. Finally, at around 8:30, Billy Joel rolled out on the stage. At least, it looked like he did on the jumbotron screens. We had expensive seats, but there was still no way anyone could have identified the headliner without benefit of jumbotron because the distance to the stage was just too great. We could not have seen the actual real live Billy Joel, even with our bifocals on. At first this bothered me. We were paying close to $300 for each ticket. If we were going to watch the concert on a screen, could we not have done something similar sitting at home in front of YouTube?

The fact that the concert was supposed to start at 8:00pm was already problematic for me. I am usually in bed by 9:30. I was never a late-night kind of gal and, in my dotage, the term “early bird special” is my jam. Still, I figured I could handle at 8:00pm start time. I figured the concert would last about 75-90 minutes and we would get home at around 11. I knew I was not going to turn into a pumpkin and figured it would be good for me to clast some icons of my life. However, when the concert did not start until 8:30 and the singing went on until after 10:30, I did feel stressed, I might turn into a pumpkin. We probably would not make it home until after midnight. As it turned out, it was closer to 1:00pm AND it was the “spring ahead” night for Daylight Savings Time. I’m not sure I wanted to clast icons quite that big, but I told myself that, as my life coach says, “I am a person who tries new things.” That phrasing is more palatable than “You can’t teach an old dog new tricks.”

Yes, I was out much later than comfortable for me. Yes, the timetable for the concert was hopelessly out of whack. Yes, the cold was cutting into my bones. Yes, I was paying several hundred dollars to watch Billy Joel on a screen when I could have stayed home and watched YouTube. Yes, the whole experience did not seem to match the generational audience it attracted. We were old, cold, anxious about why the event was not starting on time, without the supply of necessities we usually carry in our purses, and up way past our bedtime.

However, by the third song of the set, I was having a blast. I was enjoying the jumbotron screens, which reflected not only the band, but interesting visual effects that enhanced the production. I was enjoying Billy Joel’s relaxed, unscripted banter with the crowd of 70,000. I was singing along and dancing to the beat. I was not worried about getting home “on time.” In fact, I did not even know what “on time” meant.

It was a great evening. It might have been rock for the aged and I might be one of the aged, but the night certainly ROCKED. And maybe I found out that, as aged as I am, I still have a rocker chick inside of me!

What do you do that makes you feel young and wild again?  Please share your perspective by leaving a comment. In the alternative, you can email me at

Have a youthful day!

Terri/Dorry 😊

Shopping For A Migraine

It amazes me that more people do not kill themselves at Walmart.

Once upon a time when I lived alone, I used to go to Walmart as Friday night entertainment. I’d get off work, stop somewhere for fast food, and wander the aisles of the supercenter. This era of my life convinced me that a) I have serious emotional problems and b) Walmart sells EVERYTHING! Also, it convinced me that I am programmed to buy almost everything. Walking into Walmart for colorful office supplies usually entailed walking out with a huge cartload of stuff and at least $100 less than I had when I entered.

As my life became more interesting, productive, and busy… and less pathetic, by the way… I stopped looking at Walmart as an entertainment destination. It was like finally leaving an abusive relationship. I stopped going to Walmart except when I visited my mother.

My mother always adored Walmart. When it came to shopping, her catchphrase was, “for $3 or $1.99 or $5 (or whatever remarkably low price something was), why be without?” Walmart was the perfect territory for such a philosophy. I ended up with some truly ugly clothes from Walmart because they were on clearance and… well, you never know. I still remember a powder blue polyester skirt with buttons down the front that I bought, at my mother’s prompting, because it was “only $3, so why be without?” I never wore the blasted thing. It took me years to finally abandon it to the mercies of the Goodwill bag.

As my mother aged and became frailer,  Amazon became a lifeline for her. She could get everything she needed delivered to her doorstep. Still, whenever I came to visit her, she always enjoyed a good outing to Walmart. I did not enjoy Walmart, but I did enjoy my mother. Max was a good sport whenever he was with me. He trailed behind us with the shopping cart while I pushed my mom in the wheelchair.

Once we moved to Florida, the whole mother-Walmart thing was more complicated. For one thing, we live within fairly easy driving distance of several Walmarts, but we are only really close to one of them. Unfortunately, the one to which we live closest, is known as “the bad Walmart.” We heard horror stories about carjackings and robberies and all kinds of sinister associations with that Walmart practically from the day we moved in. I am not the speediest person on my best day. I could probably not outrun a villain under the most ideal circumstances. An escape plan that included me pushing a wheelchair loaded with my mother and our purchases was beyond my imagination. Therefore, the “bad Walmart” was out of the question. That meant we traveled about 40 minutes each way just commuting to a more desirable and less lethal  Walmart… to say nothing of the extended time we spent shopping. Momma always had a list, but she loved traveling up and down each aisle, just to see what they had.

The other thing was that I could not push a shopping cart AND a wheelchair at the same time. My original plan was simply to load up my mother’s lap with the items she wanted to purchase, but I quickly realized that was not going to work. I tried putting one of those plastic grocery baskets on her lap and one on each of my arms. My last trip to Walmart with my mother was in 2016. I think I still have indentations on my extremities from the grocery basket handles. Somewhere about halfway through one of our first visits, I snagged a few reusable grocery bags and slipped them over the handles of her wheelchair. I was a train wreck. Flopping bags, cramped arms, bruised knees, sweat seeping from every pore, and low blood sugar- that was what Walmart meant to me.

One would ask why I did not just take my mother’s list and go to Walmart on my own to get what she wanted. That would not have met my mom’s needs. She loved getting out and feeling part of the world. And I loved my mother. As her body became increasingly fragile, her world got smaller and smaller. There was very little I could do to help her. Her health was declining and was never going to get better. It broke my heart. I could not make her physical health better. I could do nothing to stop her descent into disability. I could, however, inject some pleasure into her life. Going to Walmart was one big source of pleasure for her.

My mother has been gone for almost seven years. I can probably count on one hand the number of times I have gone to Walmart in that time. The other day, I made the mistake of going there. I had a list of weirdly diverse items I needed, and I reasoned that Walmart was the only place that might sell all of them. If I avoided Walmart, which every instinct in my soul advised me to do, I would have to go to several other stores. I asked myself, “how bad could it be?” Wrong question.

I left the house at around 9:30. I decided to be brave and go to the “bad Walmart” because it was closest. My plan was to go to Walmart, stop by Ace Hardware if I could not obtain something on my list at Walmart, run into the dry cleaner to pick up our clothes, come home and eat something, and then leave again for my hair appointment at about 12:50. I clearly ingested some sort of alternate reality producing drug.

Actually, I had minimal trouble while shopping at Walmart. I noticed that the aisles seemed tidier than I remembered, and I did not run into too many shopping cart traffic jams. I did search for quite some time for a new outdoor welcome mat. When I asked someone where I could find such a beast, the employee told me to look in the “Home” section. The “Home” section consisted of about ten aisles. I know I walked down each one of them at least once before finding the welcome mats. Still, I was ultimately able to find everything on my list so I would not have to stop at Ace Hardware.

Then, I got on the check-out line. There were three people ahead of me. They all had huge carts of goods. I noticed a self-check area when I entered the store. I briefly considered moving down to that area, but I also noticed that they had ropes like a queue at Disney World to manage the self-check-out crowds. I did not think that was a good sign and I am not that speedy at self-check-out, so I figured I’d let a professional do it. It might have been a mistake to believe that, just because Walmart is paying someone minimum wage, that person can do the job faster than I can.

I waited in line for 15 minutes without it moving once. Finally, the checker finished with the first person in line. The second person was even more of a challenge. She had some sort of coupon that required management approval to input. From what I could glean from the conversation that came down the line from the cash register, Walmart’s system will not accept a coupon that is over some certain dollar amount unless a manager inputs an override code. The cashier would have to call a manager before the transaction could continue. Except the cashier does not “call” a manager at Walmart; the cashier stands helplessly at her register, flailing her arms trying to get the attention of a manager. After another 20 minutes, a manager finally came over to approve the discount. The line heaved a collective sigh of relief… until we learned that there was a second step to the process that required managerial approval.

The arm-flailing started over again. I considered passing a hat to everyone in line to see if we could collect the coupon amount. The crowd was getting ugly, though, and I

 was not sure if it was wise to try to collect a ransom from them. I have heard Walmart sells guns. I do not know if that is still true, but I know they sell knives because I saw them in my scenic trip through the “Home” section. It did not seem worth the risk. Finally, even the shopper waiting to get her coupon realized we had all somehow fallen into the Retail Twilight Zone. She told the checker to just take the item off her bill and she would purchase it somewhere else. The checker tried to do that, but the Walmart register system laughed maniacally and refused to comply.

As I waited in the line, I could feel my blood sugar dropping. I checked the time and realized I was not going to get to either the dry cleaners or home before my hair appointment. I decided instead to stop at a drive-through fast food place en route to the salon and pick up the cleaning after my hair appointment. Fifteen minutes later with no movement on the line, I realized I was not going to have time even to do a drive-through lunch. I also realized that not eating was not an option unless I wanted Walmart to call the paramedics when I blacked out. My guess is that calling the paramedics would have required some sort of managerial intervention, too. God only knows how long that would have taken. Anyway, since I was still in the check-out line, I grabbed a candy bar. I had to take two steps back to reach the shelf. The person behind me said, jokingly, “now you’ll have to go all the way to the end of the line.” I just barely kept from snarling when I replied, “not on your life!”

After waiting in line for 45 minutes with no progress, I surrendered. I moved my cart out of line. My initial thought was to abandon it in mid-aisle and leave, but I hated the idea of wasting all the time I had already invested in this purchasing process. It actually crossed my mind to bolt out the door with the merchandise and make a run for it, but that was the low blood sugar talking. I tentatively maneuvered my way down to the self-check-out line. I was able to access a machine in less than five minutes. I had a lot of stuff and much of it was unwieldy. It was not pretty, but I got her done. I left the store gobbling my candy bar. I just made it to my hair appointment.

Yes, Walmart does sell everything for low, low prices… including migraines and panic attacks.

What has been your worse retail experience? Don’t you think a few extra grams of carbohydrate would have made it more bearable? Please share your perspective by leaving a comment. In the alternative, you can email me at

Have a Walmart-free day!

Terri/Dorry 😊


Many of you know that I was raised as a Roman Catholic, spent most of my life worshipping in that tradition, and converted to the Episcopal Church about five years ago. These two denominations are different in some ways that are important to me, but they also share many traditions. Lenten observance is one such tradition.

Lent is the 40-day period before Easter when Christians make a special effort to reflect on their lives and improve their spirituality before Easter. Mardi Gras, or Fat Tuesday, is the day before Lent. Traditionally, Mardi Gras is a celebration of riotous living because it is the last hurrah before the fasting, praying, and abstinence of Lent. Within the Catholic faith, there are specific dietary observances to follow during those 40 days. In addition, Catholics are encouraged to commit to some special activity or to give up some enjoyable indulgence to observe Lent. As far as I know, the Episcopal Church does not have any specific food requirements, like not eating meat on Fridays during Lent. Still, we are encouraged to do something special to enrich our relationship with God during this time of purification.

I take this opportunity seriously. I like to think of doing something that is not rooted in the negative. I like to think of doing something that makes me push me outside my normal view of the world. I like to think of doing something that will allow me to discern a difference in myself and/or others. Last year, I repeated an activity I did 30 years or so ago. Each day during Lent, I mailed a letter to someone in my life who contributed positively to my spiritual development. Some of these letters were to people I interact with virtually every day. Others went to people I have not seen in more than three decades. As I wrote my letters, it was wonderful to revisit the experiences and impressions I had with these people. It brought their place in my spiritual development into sharp focus and, as a result, it brought what they taught me about spiritual development into sharp focus. The response I received was also enormously gratifying. I brought joy to the people I contacted and many of them, in turn, brought joy to me in their replies.

I wish I could say that I always undertake such ambitious Lenten observances. This year, I have been prayerfully considering what activities might be helpful for me. Last fall, I developed and taught a 4-part course on stewardship. It was something that I felt, to the depth of my soul, that God wanted me to do. That feeling is a rare and wonderful thing. It is a special blessing to experience God’s grace and direction in such a confidently powerful way. The whole program ended up being such a fantastic, joyful, affirming experience for me. I thought I might look to that program to see if I could pull anything out that would work as a special Lenten devotional.

One of the key concepts of the class was that stewardship consists of three responsibilities- taking care of the gifts God gives us, using the gifts God gives us wisely, and sharing the gifts God gives us generously. I decided to embrace three observances- one for each responsibility- for this Lent.

Taking Care of the Gifts God Give Us

One of the biggest gifts God gives us is the natural world. I am embarrassed to admit this, but I have not even embraced the most basic conservation strategies of the modern world- recycling. My diet soda and iced tea bottles skip the recycling bin and make their way directly to the trash can. In the grand scheme of things, I know my lack of recycling does not make a dramatic difference to the planet. Still, the fact that I do not bother to undertake this minor task tells me that I am not giving God’s Earth the respect He deserves. As a small token of my desire to change, I am going to start putting my recyclable disposables into the proper bin.

Using the Gifts God Gives Us Wisely

This is an area that I have been fine-tuning greatly in the past year. In the past, I was inclined to downplay my talents and gifts, fearing that they were not sufficient to contribute anything special to God’s work. I have been realizing that God gave me these gifts because He wanted me to do something with them. If they are not sufficient, He will grow them to what they need to be. Sometimes, the act of doing is the mechanism for growing. I learned this as I dove into projects at church- Alpha, Blessed Stewardship, ECW chapter chairperson. It looks like I will be taking on another big project for my church starting in May. Since it is not a done deal yet, I won’t say what it is. However, as I pray about my Lenten observances, I have felt my mind rambling to thoughts about how to administer that project and how to promote it. The project is not something I volunteered for, but I think it is something God wants me to do… if for no other reason than to show me that, with His help, I can. I think His hope for me is that I will trust Him more and start listening to His exhortations about what He wants me to do next in my life. My resolution during Lent is to start organizing the random thoughts in my head to build the framework of a plan.

Sharing the Gifts God Gives Us Generously

I try to be generous all year long. I am so aware of the many ways God has blessed me. I enjoy giving to others. I do not want to just “give more money” because “giving more money” is something that we should do whenever we see need. I want to attach the giving more time, talent, or treasure to some specific action that will be meaningful to my spiritual development. Being a good steward of God’s gifts is more about the benefit to the giver than the benefit to the recipient. This Lent, I am going to concentrate on a project that is close to my heart. I have been wandering around writing my third book. I have started and stalled several times. I recently began a more concerted effort to structure and draft the book. This Lent, I resolve to complete the first draft of this book. The book is about my mother’s life and my journey with her in this world and onto the doorstep of the next. The mental, emotional, and spiritual exploration I am doing in conjunction with the writing of this book is proving to be quite soul enhancing. I know that God is using this process to remind me of His grace. To share the gifts of His grace, the writing talent He has given me, and any treasure that results from the publication, I will give half the proceeds from the book to St. James Episcopal Church. I do not expect that this will fund any major project- heck, I doubt if it will buy pizza for the youth group-  but doing this act is more about the benefit to me than the benefit of the church.

Please pray for me!

Do you have any observance you embrace during Lent? Please share your perspective by leaving a comment. In the alternative, you can email me at

Have a prayerful day!

Terri/Dorry 😊