Mental Health Monday – I AM THE CHANGE


Chester Bennington was the lead singer for Linkin Park. After his suicide in 2018, his wife and sister made this video for Now This while at the same time coordinating an awareness campaign: 320 Changes in Direction. The video can be seen in full here.

5 Signa to Look For:

1. Change in personality

2. Agitation

3. Withdrawal

4. Hopelessness

5. Decline in personal care


We are all the change. Go to their page at 320 Changes in Direction and see what other resources are available for you or family/friends.

If you are feelling suicidal, please call the Suicide Prevention Hotline at


This Week (And Last)


New year, new you, resolutions, goals, intentions, and then I started. I was getting up every morning, eating breakfast, staying at the table and writing. It was wonderful.

And then my car sounded funny.

And then I sneezed.

And then the phone call came, that my 2003 mini-van was done. It ran the good race, but it was over. We still need to go empty it out so the mechanic can get rid of it for us. 

So, now we are carless. I’m not sure how long we will be without a car. We can’t afford a payment, we can’t afford a used car with our non-savings. I briefly considered a go-fund-me, but with the government shutdown, I’m not sure how I feel about adding to the donation burden when people are going without medicine to feed their kids.

Went to make dinner last night, and our oven didn’t work. It’s been temperamental since the fall, and my husband can probably cajole it to work (hopefully tonight), but instead of a gorgeous roast chicken we had spaghetti, not that there’s anything wrong with spaghetti, we eat it often, and we love it, but I really, really wanted chicken.

Then I got sick. It’s a cold, but it’s a really bad cold. My throat just closed up a bit; I’m having trouble swallowing, so I think it’s swollen and it hurts a little. I’m drinking tea. Plus the nose running and the coughing, and the headaches.

Then, a very close acquaintance passed away. He was young, under forty with a family, and he was just a great, lovely, fun-loving, kind man who as little as I saw on Facebook and on my Gishwhes team, I will truly miss him for a long time. What a wonderful human being he was.

Sometime today, I will get back on the horse, and I will post Mental Health Monday, and the two tea posts will appear later this week. I was also writing a Martin Luther King reflection, and I still may.

I have wonderful friends who are helping out where they can, and I still feel blessed if a little depressed.

Thank you for sticking with me. As something I can “give” you in return, I will offer you a recommendation – Google John Mulaney, grab your tissues and weep with laughter.

30 Day De-Clutter Challenge


By the time the holidays are over, we are all in need of a good de-cluttering, whether it’s our surroundings or the inside of our heads. Last year I began to attend a workshop on organizing, downsizing, and letting go of clutter. It began for me with a weekend retreat on the same thing. It was a spiritual retreat and it really focused some things for me. I’ve committed to going to at least four to six of the monthly workshops and keep the momentum going despite not doing so well at the end of the year.

The first thing on my list is my closet and getting rid of my professional/teaching clothes that I won’t be using (not that any of them fit anymore).

One rule of thumb and piece of advice – fifteen minutes is all it takes. Take fifteen minutes and do one thing. And then do another fifteen minutes. Don’t overwhelm yourself. I started by not letting  things come into the house in the first place. One example is mail. As soon as the mail is in my hands, all of the junk goes right into the garbage.

Good luck.

I’ll check in with you in fifteen days.

Click picture to link to the source (The Hearty Soul dot com). Copyright belongs to them and the author. (c)2019

National Tea Month – Adagio’s Fandom Tea Blend


Today’s Tea:

The Walking Dead Daryl

This tea consists of mambo, honeybush vanilla, mocha nut mate, cocoa nibs, and cloves. This blend is perfect both for a morning, get ready for work drink or a late afternoon treat. It’s a dark blend that works with and without milk. (I prefer without.) The cocoa nibs give it a bit of sweetness, but adding sugar perfects the flavor in my opinion.

This was a gift from a close friend. It came in a sampler box with four other teas from four other fandoms. Also included in this custom made set were Loyalty House Blend (Harry Potter/Hufflepuff), Supernatural Survival Tea (Supernatural), Donna Noble (Doctor Who), and Civil War Remedy Tea (Captain America). What was so very funny about the Civil War one was the box was a light sepia color and had a picture of an old-fashioned medicine bottle. When I didn’t look very closely at it, it took me until I actually tried it to realize that it wasn’t tea in retrospect of the American Civil War, but of the Captain America movie subtitled Civil War.

Each tea has its own unique flavor that is ver reminiscent of the fandom and characters it is made to represent. These are all loose teas, but for those new to loose tea, there are make your own tea bags, tea balls, tea strainers, and other methods for brewing loose tea.

Fandom teas is something of a specialty of Adagio, although they also offer all of the regular teas and tea blends that you might be looking for as well as accessories and teaware. Their teas are reasonably priced as is shipping and they run sales throughout the year. It’s definitely worth a visit to their website to see what interests you.

Sampler size tin, tea strainer, mug. (c)2019

Teatime Tuesday


A Nice Cup of Tea [George Orwell, 1946]

I discovered this gem through The Telegraph’s 2016 piece on Orwell and the perfect cup of tea. After re-reading 1984 and having Orwellian references since the 2016 election, this was something of a breath of fresh air to see Orwell’s name attached to. It’s kind of amazing what you find with a simple Google search.

Continue reading

Mental Health Monday – Wheel of Emotions


I started my recovery through depression and anxiety in the spring of 2012. Obviously, there were issues prior to actually getting help, and I owe it to my friends and my doctor for seeing the problems and putting me on the right path. 

One of the things that I truly needed to survive were anti-anxiety meds taken daily. The problem is that with the prescribed dosage I lost a lot of emotions. Not just awareness, but the feelings. For myself, I needed to be able to be sad when the time arose, like when my mother-in-law died. We adjusted the dose, and it’s better, but I could have really used this in those early days. I plan on looking at this chart in the days ahead and expanding my emotional vocabulary.

[Clicking on the picture will take you to the original article.]

Provided from Sarah Schuster on The Mighty. Clicking on the picture brings you to Ms. Schuster’s post and information on the graphic in relation to her mental health. Copyright, S. Schuster (c)2018-2019