Monthly Archives: October 2015

Exercise….bah, humbug!

I read an article yesterday telling me how to exercise intelligently so that I will be slim for the holidays and not need to make the traditional New Year’s Resolution to exercise more. I laughed till the tears ran down my face and into my cup of hot cocoa.download (4)

In the first place, I don’t have any ambition to be slim for the holidays and in the second place, if I make a New Year’s Resolution it will be to find more time for naps!

It did get me to thinking about my sedentary lifestyle, though. I am prone to lying prone on my couch or my bed and I may not get enough exercise. Maybe I should worry about that.

The article recommended that I keep a journal of my exercise for a day, a week, etc. That seemed like a good idea, so I began to keep a record. It looks a lot like this:

Monday: Spent twenty minutes going up and down the steps to the laundry room several times. I wasn’t doing several loads of laundry—I would get to the bottom of the stairs with all the clothes I was washing and then I would remember something else and have to run get it. Surely going up and down the stairs several times constitutes exercise…my mind is weak but my body is strong.

Tuesday: Spent the day walking from one end of the school to the other. Not because I was deliberately exercising, I just made the mistake of sending my class on a fact finding project and then realized that the fact was I would find them all over the building. Hustling up and down halls in search of suddenly released children will work up a sweat.images (4)

Wednesday – Spent all of Wednesday evening chasing a small dog around the house with the flyswatter as she chewed up one item after another that she was not supposed to have. I don’t think the dog is at all concerned about my exercise, but she does contribute her share to keeping me active.

Thursday – I spent that evening exercising my arms. Well, I exercised my legs a little too. Okay, so I sat with my feet up and guzzled iced tea all night. We can’t exercise every day right? I wonder if this is what the article meant by justifying my lack of ambition?

Friday – Okay, on Friday, I had a good excuse. On Friday, I have to watch Hawaii Five-O and Blue Bloods; how in the world could I exercise?  I did do a bit of a run, though. I ran to the bathroom and ran back to the television so I wouldn’t miss the show. Surely that counts?

Saturday I did a lot of walking. I swept and mopped floors. Then, I cleaned the bathroom and did an accidental Pilate. That was painful, so I had to sit and do some heavy breathing for a while. Then, I dropped a meat tenderizer on my foot and I did a lot of energetic hopping around. That was kind of exercising, right?

Okay, okay, so I need to do more for exercise, I get it. I just don’t like all the sweating and huffing and puffing that goes along with it. And if I don’t want to be slim for the holidays it’s not that urgent. But when it comes to New Year’s Resolutions—maybe I’ll just resolve to avoid magazine articles that talk about exercise. Yeah, that’s a good one!

© Jackie Wells-Fauth and Drops In the Well, 2015. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Jackie Wells-Fauth and Drops In The Well with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

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Just a quiet morning on the weekend…

It was a day to sleep in. It was Saturday, my daughters were home and we had stayed up too late the night before. They had a long day of travel ahead, so they were hoping for a few extra winks of sleep. Easy, since it was Saturday, right?

Not so easy. I had to be up early for an event of my own. Since I don’t have a large house, anyone up early can create issues. But I am the quietest member of the family when it comes to rising early. There was no need for anyone else to worry. I could get up and get out of there and no one would be disturbed.

I showered the night before, laid out my clothes so there would be no running of water and rummaging for fresh underwear and socks. I had even set out my breakfast bar, so I could just grab it and go. Everything was perfect.

Except I reckoned without my nightstand. You wouldn’t think a nightstand would be noisy and really, it wasn’t. The alarm on it went off, however and in reaching over the stacks of books, crossword puzzles and magazines scattered on it, I managed to knock the clock on the floor…still blaring. With a curse or two (out loud), I finally located the plug and jerked it out of the wall.

While I was doing this, my nightstand pitched my glasses to the floor as well, just for fun. Now I was in the dark, blind without my glasses and afraid to get out of the bed for fear I would step on the glasses. So, I reached down, practically standing on my head and felt around for my glasses. My reaching around grunting and groaning helped me locate my glasses and just as my hand closed on them, I rolled out of bed head first and hit the wall. Now I was upside down in the dark with no glasses. Worst still, I was no longer the only one awake.

“What are you doing?”I don’t think Roy meant the question that way. I think, still half asleep, what he really meant was, “Be quiet!”167957_617720307556_2635020_n

I managed to get myself upright with my glasses on and went in the dark to locate my clothes, which were on the dining room table. I still couldn’t turn on lights because one of my daughters had stretched out in a recliner because of a sore shoulder. She was still asleep, so I reckoned to dress in the dark in the dining room.

I heard Roy go into the bathroom, so I thought I’d just go in there, close the door and turn on the light and then I could get ready in the light. Roy wouldn’t care. So I went in, closed the door and my hand was on the light switch when I heard my oldest daughter say in the dark, “Excuse me, I’m in here.”

She didn’t sound too wide awake either, but I left her alone and went back to the dining room and woke up the third sleeper—the dog in her cage. The dog began to bark, so I decided to let her out. I dressed while she was outside and when she came back in, she immediately ran over to the recliner and brought my other daughter out of a sound sleep. She was not grateful to the dog or me.

After locking the dog downstairs, I decided that the best thing I could do for the household was to get out, so I did. I got into the car, backed it out and then realized I didn’t have my purse…and I had no idea where it was. I had to go back in through the basement to get a flashlight, which started the dog barking again. Then, I had to flash the light around in all of the rooms where there were people trying to sleep, attempting to locate the purse. I finally found it behind the computer in the dining room (I don’t know why it was there), just as my daughter from the recliner asked in a sleepy but aggrieved voice, “Are you sure it’s even in here?”

“It’s okay, I just found it,” I whispered, “I’m just going to leave now, so you can go back to sleep. Have a good day.”26496_590999231806_7679522_n

“Too late,” came grumpily from the chair as I shut the door. So that was my not so quiet morning on a Saturday. Better luck next time!

© Jackie Wells-Fauth and Drops In the Well, 2015. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Jackie Wells-Fauth and Drops In The Well with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

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Pheasants, beware!

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Martin & Roy, with their roosters, 2008

It’s pheasant season in South Dakota. No, no, you don’t understand. It’s PHEASANT season in the state of South Dakota. We have about as many pheasants in this state as we do people. Well, that’s not really true—there are many more pheasants.

This time of year, however, those pheasants had better watch out. I visualize two pheasants meeting in a corn field.

“Hey, Phred, I would have thought you’d be gone by now,” says one, looking around nervously.
Pheasant

“Why, are they planning to pick this corn field soon?” answers Phred, looking suitably interested.

“Oh, no, that’s not it. Haven’t you heard? It’s time once again for those guys in the bright orange to start shooting at us,” says Phil, lowering his voice to a whisper. “They’re always so mad at us male pheasants this time of year.”

“Yeah, I’ve noticed they’re never shooting at the women,” Phred said with some bitterness. “Why is that?”

Off in the distance, they suddenly hear the boom of guns and the baying of the dogs.

“Quick, get out of here, they’ve brought the great barking beasts from hell with them!” Phil exclaims, as both of them take flight out of the corn field.

For anyone not involved in pheasant hunting, let me tell you that in South Dakota, this is a season that is bigger than Thanksgiving and New Year’s combined. There are more family gatherings (complete with weapons), more parties, more traveling and more kinds of fun involving guns and ammunition than you can even imagine.

Blaze orange is the color of the hour and dogs suddenly become the most valuable possession anyone has. 1909653_530935265476_9290_nI have personally never shot a pheasant, I usually bag my limit using the front end of my car. They don’t, however, sell an official license for that and I don’t usually wear the traditional orange hat and shooting vest for it.

The fun and excitement of this season can overshadow professional football games, deer season and even school and work. I know of many people, especially at the beginning of the season, who suddenly contract what I like to call “pheasant phever” and miss a day or two of their responsibilities, just to slaughter a few more pheasants, who would seriously prefer they would just go to work or school!

Pheasant season ends right after Christmas when the avid hunters will pack away their orange garb and oil up and securely store their hunting weapons and dream through the long winter nights of the next hunting season.

So happy hunting, all, and pheasants beware; the hunters are out there. Get your families together and find someplace safe, and may the barking dogs never find you!

© Jackie Wells-Fauth and Drops In the Well, 2015. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Jackie Wells-Fauth and Drops In The Well with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

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Confessions of a Junk Food Junkie

It’s early on a weekend morning. I have my bowl of skim milk over shredded wheat in front of me with a tall glass of iced tea beside it. I have done my Yoga stretches and meditation and I have my copy of Dr. Oz’s article on how to slim down fast ready at my elbow.  I’m ready to enjoy a calm, healthy day.

But it’s all a lie. My ability to enjoy a healthy day is pretty much non-existent. I should be at one of those addiction meetings saying, “Hello, my name is Jackie, and I’m a junk food junkie.” If it’s food that’s bad for you, I’m the first in line.

My husband once told me that the amount of money I have spent at Burger King should have meant that I owned stock in it. But they have the greatest whoppers in the world…if only they didn’t feel compelled to put all that lettuce and tomato on it. Although, I can count that as my fruits and vegetables for the day, so the whopper is actually kind of a health food, right?

In truth, however, it’s not Burger King that has the most addictive junk food. I love, love, LOVE the French fries at McDonald’s. When I go to McDonald’s and order a meal, it’s just a socially acceptable cover. When I order a Big Mac and they ask that oh-so-famous question:download (1) Do you want fries with that? I just snort and reply, “I want a Big Mac with my FRIES, you mean!” Someday, when I no longer care about my heart or my cholesterol or whatever, I’m going in and order five servings of French fries—no hamburger, and I’m going to add, “Supersize that!”

I’m no safer from fast food in the grocery store. I don’t buy Oreos; I buy double stuff Oreos. No sense in getting too much cookie in that! I eat bread, but only cinnamon bread—with lots of frosting. No HoHo is safe in my vicinity and I have never been known to pass by the Snickers counter without taking home a few souvenirs. You’ll find me many times in the aisles of a grocery store trying to score extra bags of M&Ms and chips in the family sized bags.

Drinks are no better. If it was up to me, they could pour all alcoholic beverages in the sea and I would be unmoved. But if you start dumping the Pepsi overboard, I’ll dive in to save it. Any place that wants me to regard them as civilized will have to serve Pepsi, and if they want me to come back, there will be free refills. I’m not hooked on coffee (which has considerably less calories), I’m hooked on Pepsi! I’ll drink Coke when I have to, but it’s never as satisfying. Places where I am a frequent customer bring me a Pepsi without having to ask any awkward questions.545010_850822029836_1082733874_n

So as you can see, my weekend morning’s picture has a few flaws. Because if you look closer, you might find that the milk isn’t skim and that the shredded wheat is heavily laced with sugar, the iced tea will not make it to the bottom of the glass before it’s replaced by a Pepsi, the Yoga session lasted almost four minutes and I’m reading Dr. Oz’s article “How to Slim Down Fast” because I always enjoy a good laugh! Hello, I’m Jackie and I’m a junk food junkie!

© Jackie Wells-Fauth and Drops In the Well, 2015. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Jackie Wells-Fauth and Drops In The Well with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

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Serving two helpings of sick for supper

I have a recurring fantasy. I will be on my deathbed, ready for my final words of love and affection from my family. Roy will lean over the bed, take my hand tenderly and whisper in my ear, “What were you thinking about fixing for supper?” That is, if he lives longer than me…which he won’t if he asks that question too often.

Everyone knows that not only am I a mediocre cook, I also don’t much enjoy it. Somehow, when Roy and I got married, I must have missed the part which said that I would do all the cooking. The sad part of this is that Roy is a much better cook—he just hates it even more than I do.

Over the years, it has been his mission to make sure I end up with the cooking. He happily mows lawn, tends garden, even does some laundry. But inevitably, no matter what, he asks that question: “What are you planning for supper?”

It doesn’t matter the circumstances. I have come home at 9 o’clock at night, dragged in the door, dropped my things and been ready to follow them down and he will be sitting at the empty table and no matter how dangerous I might look, he always sings out, “What are you planning for supper? I’m starved!”

His perseverance in this little ceremony even extends to illnesses. I can be laid out on the bed, wheezing like a noisy radiator, smeared in smelly Vicks and he will come in, look me over and say, “What will you be fixing for supper? Soup would be good for you.”

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Dinner preparation of the sick…

I sniff up the snot sliding down my nose, slurp up the drool that has been coming from my mouth and suggest that he do something with himself that is anatomically impossible. He leaves and inevitably I will feel sorry for him and go out to fix him something. He never seems to mind eating a meal that has been fixed by his disease-ridden wife and even worse, he never seems to get the disease!

The only thing he invariably agrees to cook are steaks on the grill. First, he loves steak. Second, he thinks it’s expensive meat. And third, without even trying, I burn it on the grill more often than I don’t. So, if I really want the night off of cooking, I am likely to propose steaks on the grill. It’s the only time I hear those magical words, “I’ll cook it.”

So, that’s actually going to be the end of that final fantasy. When Roy leans over to ask what’s for supper, instead of saying, “I’m dying, you insensitive rat!” I’m going to reply softly, “Well, I was thinking I’d make steaks on the grill one more time.” He will stand up, head for the door, and announce to anyone listening, “Where’s my lighter? I’ve got to get that grill warm before I start the steaks.”

© Jackie Wells-Fauth and Drops In the Well, 2015. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Jackie Wells-Fauth and Drops In The Well with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

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Not making the connection

I’m having my hearing tested as soon as I can. On a not-so-related-note, I had about five seconds of panic that my husband might be cheating on me. And, on a note which will appear to be connected later, I’m ripping the phone off of the wall.

One of the worst things about telephones today is the advent of the tele-marketer. I’ve tried to be patient because I know this is not an easy job, but I think some of them are a real annoyance.

I answer the phone and a loud boat whistle goes off in my ear and I hear that I have been selected to be the winner of a free cruise. I usually hang up before I’m instructed to press “2” for more details on how I can reveal personal information to get the fictitious cruise tickets.6a0120a85dcdae970b0120a86db463970b-pi

Then there are political commercials. I don’t care what political party you are from, what special interests you espouse or what religious affiliations you might follow. When it comes to these political phone calls, I’m ready to vote for Putin as president of Fantasyland! The least they could do is have the courtesy to give me a real person to hang up on, instead of a recorded message.

But I digress from today’s exciting adventures! Tonight, I was watching television at an admittedly high volume when the phone rang. I debated with myself, but finally opted to answer it. First mistake.

“Hello?”

“Hello,” answered a sweet, female voice on the other end. “May I speak to Roy?”

“I’m sorry, Roy is not at home, may I take a message,” by this time, my mind was back on the television show I was missing and I wasn’t listening too closely.

“This is Roy’s wife,” said the sweet young voice.

A silence….a very long silence, while I tried to make sense of the idea that Roy’s wife had called Roy’s wife to let Roy’s wife know that she was, indeed, Roy’s wife.

My voice dropped into a few degrees of ice. “I’m sorry, who are you looking for?”

“I said, is this Roy’s wife,” she replied, prepared to launch into her sales pitch.

It was at this point that I hung up the phone, not because she was particularly annoying, but because I’m now concerned that my hearing might be going.

So, tomorrow, I’m going to call for an appointment to have my ears checked. Then I’m ripping the phone out of the wall….and Roy just might want to watch his step!

© Jackie Wells-Fauth and Drops In the Well, 2015. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Jackie Wells-Fauth and Drops In The Well with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

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