a little bit of faith

Every once in awhile, something really bad happens.

Not your everyday, run-of-the-mill bad ~ something shocking, that resonates to your core.  Some people manage to pick themselves up, dust themselves off, and -still carrying the burned imprint of their experience on their soul- make valiant attempts to move forward every day.

Some people falter.  Their fear, damage, or trauma is too much, too heavy, to carry on their shoulders every day alone.

Some people’s characters are strengthened, life experience deepened ~ they are forever changed, and that change cannot be defined in either positive or negative terms.  It merely is what it is.

If you’ve experienced a trauma that would affect a person like this, then you know that you can never fully get perspective on how it’s changed you.

I suffered a trauma once ~ and that trauma was so entwined with so many other life altering things that were occurring at the time, I know inherently I am forever changed by it … and I am not sure to what extent.

All people have flaws ~ everyone has quirks and traits that make them inherently who they are.  Finding others to love you for the flaws and quirks and traits that make you you is, I believe, part of the fun of life.  Having the ability to share who you are as a person demonstrates, in my eyes, a person’s strength of character, and comfort in their own skin.  It’s like saying “I am who I am, and I’m good with it.  I’m working on me every day, and I’m doing it based on what I believe and value in life. Thanks for liking the person I am.”

I don’t believe in hiding parts of my life ~ or to be more correct, in concealing.  What happened to me happened ~ it can’t be changed … but I also try not to dwell on it too much.  It’s part of me, it’s part of the person I am today.  In some ways it has made me a stronger person ~ and even though I get teased about it, it also knocked me down a few pegs from my naive perch regarding humanity.

Due to the fact that I wasn’t alone in my experience, I am going to choose not to get into detail on a website that’s open for all to read.  I respect and love the other people who were there with me too much to open up their old wounds along with mine.

So last night, when I mentioned the many things bouncing around in my mind like multiple pin balls, these were some of them.  I’m struggling to come to terms with the repercussions of the trauma I suffered ~ and even as years slip by, the memories are so clear that I shock myself with my gut reactions sometimes.  I also thought about how these things, which so profoundly affected me, have also changed me. I thought about how I don’t want them to be excuses, but how I also needed to embrace who I am because of it all.

So I guess this is me, saying this is who I am.  I have flaws, and quirks that make me me.  I ‘m not the same person I was when I was 21 ~ I doubt I’ll be the same person when I’m 41.  But I’m trying to have a little faith that if I work every day at being a better person, a more patient person, a more thoughtful person, then hopefully bit by bit, I’ll be the best version of me I can be, and the scars and quirks and flaws that are associated with the trauma that occurred will fade quietly into the background.

An Old Friend

I’ve had quite a lot bouncing around my mind lately, and now I’ve found myself at the end of another day, and still a laundry list of things to do a mile long.

Tonight I hosted our neighbors for dinner and made my “Old Reliable,” Quiche, served with a simple baby arugula salad dressed with parmesan cheese, olive oil and a splash of lemon juice.  After being away, I find it very comforting to come home and fall back into routine.  It’s sort of like an old friend (until you get a pile of work a mile high and wonder what the point of taking a vacation is …. but that’s a story for another day!).

I chose to make my quiche, because since I’ve started experimenting in the kitchen, I’ve been doing new things (who’d’ve thunk it, right?) and it’s always nice to come back to an old favorite, and know that no matter how time crunched you are, or overwhelmed with things that need to get done … or blah blah whatever … this dish is a certified crowd pleaser, and you could make it in your sleep.  That’s how I feel about my quiche, and I have to say, it’s rarely (dare I say never?) let me down.

As I sit here full to the brim with the goodness of quiche, arugula salad and good, old-fashioned milk (sidenote: I drink a lot of it), I am overwhelmed with a feeling of contentedness.  Maybe not everything in life is going exactly as I’d hoped  … maybe I don’t have a dog (yet?!? oh please God, I’m being so very good!) … but in the whole scheme of things, life is good.

And here’s what I’m telling you (my few readers) ~ make the Quiche.  Because it’s really good. And once you’ve made it, you’ll be hooked, too.

And with that, I have to say ….

The man is now home, and my eyes are practically begging to be done staring at a computer for the day … so I bid you all adieu.

 

A Day at Cabela’s

I love the statue out front

Many months ago (we couldn’t quite remember if it was a year ago, or a year and half) John took me to Cabela’s for the first time.  I was utterly blown away.  It was SO much more than a store.  I felt like a small child experiencing something so totally outside of my knowledge and experience ~ big wide eyes, jaw dropped … I couldn’t quite take it all in.

I mean, to begin with, I did not think so many taxidermied animals could all be in one place.


Elk is so regal, and compared to deer (whitetail or mule) it’s gi-normous.  My favorite mounts (or as I like to call them, “Dead Heads,” are Elk and Caribou … aka Reindeer … beautiful). 

I heart moose

Next, have you ever seen the amount of gadgets & gizmos made for fishing, hunting and camping? I mean, the stuff is ridic!  No joke.

Today we went back to get John stocked up on some necessities for his upcoming hunting trip out west.  Cabela’s was no less impressive.  Some pics of our three hours wandering around the store.  Even for a non-hunting, non-camping gal, I think it’s a really fun place, and if you have the opportunity, you should check it out.

I went on safari back in 2008, and the display of African game at Cabela’s is also pretty impressive.

The Hefalump and moi

Cats!

Kudu

Simba stalking his prey

And don’t worry  … there’s a tunnel full of fish, too!

Entering the Fish Tunnel! (I make a lot of weird faces)

John checkin' out the frozen fishies

And just when you think there are no more deer …  you find the entire wing called “Deer Country.”

Wall of Record-Breaking Racks

I didn’t get a pic of the polar bears (I was a picture taking maniac everywhere else, tho!) but I did get a picture of these guys … brrrrr, cold!

And to round things out, a quote from President Theodore Roosevelt ….

Now, I’m not a hunter.  But I thoroughly enjoyed Cabelas.

Hurricane Irene

As I sit tapping away on my computer keys, a debate is raging amongst my family regarding our best plan of attack for heading home. (Which is kind of a bummer, because it implies leaving early … and no one likes to leave vacation early.)

Irene is due to hit North Carolina and on up the East Coast, and it’s a tricky thing deciding what is the best time to pack it up and call it a day.

Luckily for Hilton Head, they aren’t due to get anything more than some rain and gusts of wind, but that doesn’t help us as we drive north on route 95, and potentially encounter rough weather in addition to all the people evacuated from the North Carolina coast.  The southern shore towns of NJ (including, I am told, Atlantic City) were issued a mandatory evacuation beginning this morning at 6am, so that’s a big indication that this storm is to be taken seriously.

In my opinion, Mother Nature should always be taken seriously.  She can be brutal when angry ~ and render untold damages.  Mostly, I’d like to get home safely, and know that all the people out there that I love are safe as well.

Of course, Irene could bounce back out to sea, and all of this drama could be for naught.  But again, it’s never a good idea to count on that when Mother Nature is involved.  She’s also quite unpredictable, and feisty.

So East Coasters, stay safe!  And Irene … don’t be mean.

Things I love about Hilton Head

So, as I have mentioned, my family has been vacationing in Hilton Head for a very long time (my parents even came here on their honeymoon!).

There are many things I love about the island ~ here are a few …

1.  They have zoning laws that prevent tall buildings and neon signs ~ everything is very low key and rustic.

2.  Because it started out as a sporting vacation spot, the island is covered in golf courses and tennis courts … which are green, and very pretty.

3.  The island is also criss-crossed with really nice bike trails, so you bike everywhere ~ there are always bike racks to lock up your beach cruiser, and anyone who has ever been here before (and even the newbies, because you learn quick!) knows that as a motorist, you have to always be aware of the bike traffic.

Regular Bike Trail

Trail to the Beach

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

4.  The beaches are huge and beautiful, and un-commercialized.

 

 

 

5.  There are tons of outdoor cafes, bars and restaurants with gorgeous views.

Skull Creek Boathouse's Outdoor Patio & Bar

6.  There is something to do for all ages ~ the island even has a mini-water park for kids.

7.  The seafood is ridic.  And most restaurants serve She Crab Soup (my ultimate fav!)

Some pics of where we bought the scallops, clams, shrimp & crab legs …

 

 

 

8. There are a bunch of water-related activities to do … dolphin watches, wave runners, catamarans, mystery boat dinner cruises, sailboats … you name it, it’s probably down here.

Some pics from our sunset sail on “Cheers” … set up by my little brother, who couldn’t make it due to food poisoning.  Poor guy.

Setting sail on "Cheers"

Eli near the bow of the boat

Sunset from the Boat

(The cloud formations and color due to Miss Irene were ah-may-zing … so incredible that the camera couldn’t quite capture it all … sad face).

Heading home on "Cheers"

Irene's Crazy Clouds

Skull Creek Marina

And one when we were landlubbers once again …


I’m off for a ride on the beach on one of our sexy beach cruisers.  I love this island!

Tonight’s Special Is …

Sea Scallops!

Here’s a little story about how dinner came about.

On our first day of ‘hols’ -as they are commonly referred to in the UK- we all enjoyed shrimp and steamers, procured from Barnacle Bill’s Seafood Shack.  During our dinner discussion, the topic of every one’s favorite shell fish/seafood came up, and the majority of us ranked sea scallops in the top five, if not the top three.  Since we’d already decided to take turns making dinner, I thought to myself what a good idea making sea scallops would be.

However, I hemmed and hawed quite a bit about what to make for a side.  In the end, I chose one of my favorite side dishes, a recipe that I share courtesy of my very close friend Minda, who makes it better than anyone ~ Mashed Cauliflower.

Additionally, because as I may have mentioned, this girl cannot get enough avocado, I made my Avocado & Mandarin Orange Salad, spiced up this time with some diced red onion.  Delish.

In general, dinner turned out a-okay, and it’s always a good sign when hands reach out to dole out seconds onto their cleaned plate.  A triumph, Mrs. Cratchit! A triumph I say!

What was on our shopping list for Mashed Cauliflower & Sea Scallops~

Chicken Bouillon (about 2 cups)

Cumin

Paprika

1 head of cauliflower

1/4 cup Sour Cream (or in layman’s speak, a few heaping dollops)

1/4 cup Butter (divided into tablespoons)

1/4 cup Milk (not always necessary)

Salt & Pepper

What to do:

1.  Preheat oven to 425.

2.  Break up cauliflower into small florettes, and fill a glass baking dish.  Pour chicken stock over cauliflower (leaving a small amount in the bottom of the dish).

 

 

 

 

3.  Season liberally with cumin and paprika.

4.  Put in oven for approximately 40 minutes.  Stir often, to ensure that cauliflower is not drying out.

5.  When it appears to be cooked to the proper temp (aka, falling apart easily), remove from oven, and transfer florettes into mixing bowl.  ** Drain out excess chicken stock.

6.  Add 1-2 tbsps butter (use judgement wisely ~ you don’t want it either too soupy, or too dry!), two heaping dollops of sour cream, and mash together with potato masher.  If necessary, mash in milk to achieve good consistency.  The point is to try to mirror the appearance and texture of mashed potatoes as closely as possible.

7.  Use hand mixer if you feel it’s necessary to smooth out the texture.

8.  Season with salt & pepper to taste.

The Salad (a refresher):

*** These ingredients serve 8! Just so you know!

2 cans Mandarin Orange segments, drained

4 avocados, diced

1/2 large red onion, coarsely chopped

 

 

 

1/4 cup olive oil

Juice of 1.5 lemons

 

 

 

Salt & Pepper

Handful of cilantro, finely chopped

 

 

 

What to do:

1.  Whisk olive oil, lemon juice, salt & pepper together to taste.

2.  Whisk in cilantro.

3.  Combine mandarin oranges, onions & avocado in a bowl.  Pour vinaigrette over, and fold together gently (don’t do it too aggressively or the oranges will splinter apart).

For the Scallops:

**We used 3.41 lbs of fresh sea scallops.

1.  Rinse scallops in colander.  Remove and place on paper towels or kitchen towels, and pat dry.

 

 

 

2.  In a large, flat sauce pan, heat 1-2 tbsps butter and a tbsp olive oil over high heat.  When the pan begins to smoke, sprinkle the scallops you are about to cook with some salt (SPRINKLE! Don’t liberally douse!), and place them in the pan.

3.  DON’T MOVE THE SCALLOPS while they cook.  Allow them to cook for approximately 2 minutes on the first side.  When you flip them, they should be seared on the underside, and the flesh should be turning from transluscent to opaque.  (** A properly cooked scallop looks vaguely transluscent in the very center when you cut through it).

4.  Cook for approximately one minute on the second side.

5.  Scallops should be evenly browned on both sides.

6.  Serve immediately (I drizzled some of my lemon cilantro vinaigrette over each scallop to give it some added zing).

I completely and totally enjoyed this meal, but due to the hefty price tag of fresh sea scallops, John and I will not be cooking these guys on a regular basis.  However, if you have the opportunity to either cook sea scallops, or have them at a restaurant, I strongly urge you to try them.  Just remember as you are cooking, you don’t want to overcook the scallops!  If you press the scallop and it feels firm, it’s overcooked.  So err on the side of caution ~ once you remove the scallops from the heat, they will continue to cook for a little bit, because of being cooked on such high heat.  Make sure the butter is slightly smoking when you pop them in the pan, and resist the urge to check them, or move them around ~ I know you can do it, because I managed to have enough self discipline to restrain myself and I am the queen of impatience!

Ready for din-din!

Fore!

Last night, we had an amazing dinner prepared by Eli, my brother’s lovely lady, assisted by none other than my brother himself (egads!).  Tomorrow is my night and my partner-in-crime is my uncle, so I’m excited about the meal (& the blog) already!

One of the things I have really enjoyed about the new lady in my brother’s life is that she’s a very strong, independent sort of person, and holds her own quite well in the family.  Since she’s been around, our family has been exposed to new and different foods and traditions, because Eli doesn’t fade into the background.  And when you date someone like my brother, that’s a very important characteristic.  She’s a keeper.

For din din last night, she did a surf & turf with beef tips, grilled asparagus, Snow Crab legs and mashed sweet potatoes (yes please, I’ll have some more of that!).  It was yum yum delish.  Also, check out her blog ~ it’s not food related at all, but she’s quite the writer and I like her inner monologue, which is on display at www.shortforelizabeth.com.

She's gonna hate me for this, but isn't she the cutest?

This morning, I dragged my hiney out of bed, and went for a quick jog (I would say I probably did two miles, but it felt like 100 because you can cut the humidity with a knife down here!).  Then, I did some work.  Yes, you read that correctly, work.  I’m a good employee! 😉

Then it was off for the family’s “starter” round of golf ~ my first since last year, and my brother’s first in almost two.  It was quite a day.  Apparently, my dad picked the course that was “Beginner Friendly.”  I’ll keep my opinion to myself, but I will say that the course was very long.  In more ways than one.  The yardage was a little ridic on some holes.

First, we teed off at 11am, so we played through the hottest time of the day (can you say sweaty? … because we were!).

The supplies

My brother wears Pink Shorts. It's all good.

Second, when a person hasn’t played in awhile, it tends to take one more shots to get to the green … which means more time, and more swinging … and usually, more walking.  In the sun.

If you were wondering, the answer is yes.  I’m sunburnt.

Hot. Sweaty. Somewhere on the back nine.

We saw some alligators ~ I didn’t get a pic of the one that pulled itself out of the lagoon and slunk across the third fairway, but I did get a snap of his friend gliding through the water on the fifteenth.

I know it looks like a log. It wasn't. Trust me.

In general, I played fairly solid golf for not having swung a club in awhile.  And of course, my brother beat me, because he’s just that annoyingly good at everything.  It was a great afternoon with my mom, doing something that she is very good at (she used to compete in and win tournaments, so you can understand why my brother and I play and strive to be good … don’t even get me started on my dad’s obsession with the game!).  And golf always makes good memories!

We came home and plopped in the pool, and extricated ourselves just before the thunderstorm came (Hurricane Irene is one her way!).  Now we’re off to dinner at Il Carpaccio ~ which is a good thing, because this girl is hungry!

Downpour!

Is there anything you and your family like to do together?  Let me know about it in a comment!  I’d love to know that other families have traditions like ours to go out and play golf in absurdly hot weather and call it ‘vacation.’  🙂

road trippin’

You know how sometimes, when  you are travelling, somewhere along the line you loose track of the day?  That happened to me yesterday, as my incredibly long Friday bled into Saturday, and when I finally collapsed in a heap of fatigue, I had lost all ability to compose rational thought.

Now, following twelve full hours of sleep (yes, twelve! I’m very excited about it!), I am ready to attack vacation with unbridled enthusiasm.  But first, I’ll set the scene.

As I may have mentioned, my family shares a love for a little something called “tradition.”  For most of my life, we have journeyed to Hilton Head Island for a vacation of family time, sun, sand and surf.  (And good eats, and boats, and golf, as well … but I’ll get there!).

Each year, my parents would load up the car, and we would make the drive down, stopping somewhere in North Carolina to break up the drive (we have lived in many places, so the drive has not always been the same). My brother and I would know we were getting close, because billboards for “South of Border” would begin, and once we passed that, it meant that we were in the home stretch.

Now, my parents never actually stopped at South of the Border.  At this point in my life, I know why ~ it’s possibly the most kitschy, commercialized, ridiculous place I’ve  ever been.  It was as we got older, and Dave & I started driving down separately with various friends, that the tradition of stopping at South of the Border was born.

After departing Philadelphia following an epic monsoon and switching cars along the way (three people + two golf bags + four pieces of luggage + Mini Cooper = not comfy, so my dad generously allowed us to borrow his wheels, which are very comfy), we hit the road for twelve hours of driving.

I took the wheel at 5am, so I was the lucky girl who steered us into the parking lot of the Waffle House at South of the Border (another tradition that Dave maintains with unswerving, non-negotiable regularity) as the sun was rising in the sky.  Unfortunately, many of the stores were not open by the time we were done noshing, but we did get some pics.

Brekkies

Dave in his happy place

Pedro Greets you at South of the Border

After several minutes of photo ops, we hit the road again for the final leg of the journey.  We had instructions to swing by the house and check out the hot tub (the ‘rents wanted to make sure it was working!) which we duly did.

nice!

Then it was off to our favorite watering hole, The Salty Dog at South Beach Marina.  I began my lunch by slurping a pina colada, having a bowl of She Crab Soup (my most favorite soup in the whole word, hands down) and nibbling on some fresh Grouper bites.

The family comes together at the Salty Dog

For din din later that night (post-checking in, grocery shopping and swimming in the pool!) there was a simple spread of steamers, shrimp, and twice-baked potatoes.

For the Steamers ~

Boil a large pot of water.

Drop in steamers. Cook til they start to pop open.

Only serve clams that open up!!! Very important!  If they don’t open in the hot water, they shouldn’t be eaten.

Serve with melted butter.

For the Shrimp ~

1.  Boil water with Old Bay seasoning (use generously).

2. Lower the temperature of the water and then put shrimp in.  Cook until fully opaque and pink.

3.  ** A trick for a lot of shrimp is to do a little at a time, so that they cook in the hot (but not quite boiling water) and stay tender.

4.  Serve with cocktail sauce (or a dipping sauce of your choice!)

For the Twice Baked Poh-tay-toes (a la Zia Leni) ~

Preheat oven to 350.

1.  Needed: 4 medium to large potatoes, butter, chives, 1 package Philadelphia Crean Cheese. Chop up chives, allow Philly Cream cheese to soften by leaving out of fridge.

Meanwhile …

2.  Cook the potatoes in the microwave until soft (depending on the potatoes, about 10 minutes).  Make sure that before you put them in the micro, you poke some holes in them with the tongs of a fork.

3.  When they are soft, cut them in half longwise.  Scoop out the middles, leaving a nice potato skin shell to re-fill. You should now have eight potato “bowls.”  Put the scooped out middles into a mixing bowl.  Combine with a tablespoon (or two, depending on your love of butter) of butter, and the 8 oz package of softened cream cheese.   Once it has reached the consistency you like (nice, and thick and creamy for me!) fold in chives.  Season with salt & pepper to taste.

4. Refill your potato bowls with your potato mixture.  Line the potato bowls on a cookie sheet, and pop in the oven for about five minutes, or until the tops of the potatoes start to brown/crisp.

5.  Serve.  Yum.

** If you want a fluffier potato, try whipping in some Greek yogurt in addition to cream cheese.

 

childhood memories

Tonight was the first televised pre-season game that I got to enjoy, and I have to tell everyone, it was most assuredly exhilarating.

I was smiling like a giddy child as Ben dropped back to assess his first pass ~ smiling like a giddy child when all the numbers and names that I followed with dogged devotion last seaon (well … not all of them, but a lot of them) came back to me, in inky black and vivid gold.  Yes, I understand it’s pre-season; but pre-season precedes a season, and for that, I am infinitely excited.

The Steelers are tradition to me.  They are the fall, and hopefully the beginning of the wretchness that is January, and the bleak days of winter.  I have memories of my father wearing a Steelers tossle cap to shovel the driveway … in Noblesville, in Exeter, in Flemington, in Gibsonia … in Wyomissing.  Black and gold were bred into me like most fathers indoctrinate their sons.  I love them now, I loved them then, I will love them always, in a totally fanatic, unabashed way.

I remember eating brunch at Station Square and taking the ferry across the river to games that were more bitterly cold than anything I could imagine.

I think with utter fondness of watching games in college, surrounded by a sea of black and gold.

I know where I was when we beat the Broncos at Mile High Stadium in the AFC Championship, and headed to Bill Cowher’s 2nd (and sole victorious) Super Bowl.

I know where I was when we faced the Ravens to battle for the AFC title again ~ standing in row 521 in the endzone with my little brother, wrapped up like the son in “A Christmas Story,” drinking IC Light and screaming at the top of my lungs.

I know where I was last year, when we fell in defeat.  It was heart-breaking.

I love the Steelers in a completely biased, ridiculously enthusiastic way.  (I drive a black & gold Mini Cooper, for goodness sakes’).  I’m chomping at the bit for football season, and I’m so grateful that the man loves the game as much as me.

Despite eating a completely green-themed meal for dinner (dates wrapped in proscuitto with a basil/garlic/honey dipping sauce, shaved aparagus salad, green ravioli with broccoli & pesto … and the piece de resistance, the mint green whipped dipping sauce for kiwis, green grapes & honeydew) tonight was a wholly black & gold evening.  Whew!

And so I say, in the spirit of utter fan devotion ~

Thank you, Football Gods, for settling the lockout, and allowing us a full NFL season.  I deeply appreciate it.  As I am sure all true fans nationwide do as well.

And to all teams across our great nation I say, Good Night & Good Luck!   (PS. Such a good movie!!)

From last night … Hamlet speaks those immortal lines in  … you guessed it … Hamlet.  🙂

the seed of doubt

Recently, I’ve been faced with quite a conundrum.

I’m not sure if the conundrum is fatigue-related.  (In regards to my use of fatigue, I mean exhaustion, not the uniform of soldiers).

I don’t know if the conundrum is as dire as I sometimes believe it is.

I have lost track, at this point, of which side I’m pulling for.  There no longer seems to be two opposing forces; instead it’s multi-faceted.

‘Aye, there’s the rub!’  (*Name that Shakespeare play!  Bonus points … which character says it?)

I’ve completely lost perspective.

Okay, so here’s what happened.  Generally.

Because of the … ummm …. let’s say ‘growing pains’ that my work situation has been experiencing of late, someone very generously offered the company an amenity that was needed, out of the goodness of his heart (as much as that exists in the business world).

To express its gratitude, the company offered a non-monetary … barter? shall we say? … in return.

The barter was directly related to me.

And I was approached in a very  … might I say unusual? … and somewhat confusing way.

(Can everyone accurately feel the eggshells on which I am very tentatively tip toeing across?)

After the unusual approach, I was feeling a bit taken aback, and even more vulnerable than I had been feeling since the whole barter-exchange thing-o took place. There are so many contributing factors to this that it’s not even worth getting into the particulars, but here’s something that is important.

Occasionally, I over think things.

Now, in retrospect, I don’t agree that I completely over thought this ~ I do think that voicing my concerns and establishing some boundaries was important.  But boy oh boy, did I fixate and let it manifest.

And it made me contemplate the whole process, and how small injustices can become completely distorted and exaggerated out of proportion.  It made me think about human nature; a person’s innate instinct to protect oneself.  One of the (many) things I’ve learned as I’ve wracked up the notches on the calendar, is that trying to understand all sides to a story before completely freaking out is a pretty good skill.  Very useful, and it almost always helps you avoid getting egg on your face, or burning with embarrassment at the memory of the event in question.  It’s a skill that requires discipline.  I’m still learning.  I think it takes lots of practice (at least that’s what I’m telling myself!).

It’s also interesting to consider how seemingly small word choices in somewhat explosive situations can so completely expose one’s vulnerability.  I realized with somewhat of a shock, that my immediate reaction to the situation in question revealed something about myself.

So the thing is, when you are always on guard, and always expecting the worst, or a deception, it makes you less likely to accept things at face value.  That’s not a good thing.  It’s sort of sad, really, and when I had my epiphany regarding my own behavior, it made me a little sad for myself.  And after that, I felt even worse for people who do things that are both generous and thoughtful for me (especially the man) that I inherently question.

Does that mean I have trust issues?  Who knows.

What it does mean is that a seed of doubt was planted in my mind, and because of many factors, including my tendency to over think things and my constant worry that someone is trying to dupe me (I know, paranoid much? ~ but there are reasons … another time, another rumination), a seed of doubt for me grows rapidly.

And I guess what I wanted to say in this post, in a very roundabout way, is that this particular seed of doubt was a very good exercise for me in inter-personal relations and effective business communication.  I definitely floundered, and took some things a bit too personally.  But I felt like I also took a huge step forward in dealing with something that had originally completely knocked me off my feet.

And I’m not burning with embarrassment, or covered in egg.

I may (or may not!) have slightly pink-tinged ears.  But that’s better than a beet red face!  I’ll take it for today as progress-made.