Humor Amid the Panic

As Hurricane Matthew churned out in the Atlantic last week, we made preparations to go inland to get out of its way. We had a cooler which we loaded with those items that wouldn’t keep if the electricity went off. We put ice from the ice-maker in plastic bags to keep the food cool and headed west.

Our neighbors, however, had to go to the grocery store before heading out, and this is what they encountered: long lines and empty shelves. hurricane_matthew_palm_beach_county-8_0Apparently, when a disaster is eminent, all bread, milk, diaper, and pet food suppliers shut down for 6 months and every shopper is aware of this, so instead of buying just a loaf of bread and a gallon of milk, they stock up for the next few months because they know they will be without for – maybe – eons.coral-palm-2016-08-18-20-26-44-_fca6548-edit

Well, maybe there is some truth to this belief, because when it was time to go back to the coast, we went to the grocery store (actually several of them) and they were all out of the ice we needed to chill our cooler and its contents to go home again (even though there was never even any power loss where we were). Ha! Foiled you say? No. I just took out some screw-on bottles of soda and water, emptied a little out of each bottle, and stuck them in the freezer. I then had ice to chill the cooler and its contents for the drive back to the coast.

We thought outside the grocery box.storm-20160809-17-52-38

We’re Baaaack

We evacuated our Atlantic Ocean-front condo Wednesday October 5, leaving the place to Hurricane Matthew. Dear Husband and I each drove a car to our central Florida double-wide in Grand Island about 2 1/2 hours away from our beach-front condo and 60 miles northwest of Orlando, hoping Matthew wouldn’t do us too much damage there. We were spared the worst in both places. Thank God!coral-palm-2016-04-16-17-09-53-_f8a5611

We came back to our condo yesterday, Sunday, October 9 to an almost fully functioning unit. We had water, electricity, and even electric garage doors opening on the ground level. The only evidence of Matthew is one of our roof-top air handlers not cooling the back of the unit, for which we are waiting for the air conditioner repair crew to appear today. All in all not bad, really.

Up north a little, Matthew did quite a number where he hit during high tide, washing out the road in Flagler Beach. We were fortunate that he hit during low tide at our location. We didn’t even lose power in Central Florida.


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Facebook has a great feature that allowed us with a single button to let everyone know that we were safe and secure inland. We invited another couple up in Cocoa Beach to come inland and stay with us. They did, and we four ate our way through the weather reports on TV as the storm progressed up the Atlantic Coast. We even went out to restaurants twice. Both of us couples brought whatever we thought might spoil in an unrefrigerated space while we were gone, so we had a lot to eat. Fruit, milk, and such. Healthy eating for the most part, but nervous eating too, so we all ate too much.

We hope you all were safe and sound and came through the other end, if exposed to Matthew or not. Nothing new to report, except high seas and windy conditions still on this edge of the ocean…coral-palm-2016-01-31-06-51-19-_f8a5272

There’s a Storm Comin’

As is our usual habit, we ate lunch out today on the balcony overlooking the Atlantic Ocean. There’s usually a strong breeze and always a beautiful sky even when it is threatening to storm. Today, sun overhead, wispy mare’s tails clouds, and a stronger-than-normal surf. Hurricane Matthew is tearing Haiti and Cuba apart and threading its way through the islands probably heading our way. We have checked into the NOAA weather site for national and town weather and our county emergency site for advice and weather updates. coral-palm-2016-02-01-07-46-39-_f8a5293

We kept our central Florida double-wide and will probably bug out there tomorrow morning. Even if our condo is safe, there may be flooding on the ground floor where we house our cars, and probably loss of electricity (water, air conditioning, refrigeration, and elevator), so we might as well get out while we can and come back when it is over, whatever “it” turns out to be.

Our list of what to take is short: our dog, our prescriptions, and our computers. Dear Husband is taking photos now of what interior looks like in case the worst happens and we have to go to the insurance company and make a claim.


If we were to stay here, we’d want enough food and water for 3 days, batteries to run whatever we’d want to run, and still be prepared for no refrigeration, no air conditioning, and no elevator. Other people here in the condo have weathered other similar hurricanes and not had much trouble, but we think we’d be better getting away from it all.

The point is to have a plan, and try to do something towards following the plan everyday. It’s a little like following a goal. Tiny steps if you’ve got the time. Big steps if you don’t. Be safe out there!coralpalm-20160816-20-04-39

If I Don’t Start First Thing in the Morning…

Die-hard procrastinators: I put off everything. Good thing I am married and he’s still alive. I would put off getting up in the morning.

Mark Twain said

“Eat a live frog first thing in the morning and nothing worse will happen to you the rest of the day.”


Sunrise in our “front yard”

I would never start anything that I’m putting off (translation: something I need to do but don’t want to do) if I didn’t start doing it first thing in the morning. These are my frogs. And I’m not a morning person. I always vow to myself to start later when I wake up (i.e. in the afternoon), but something always comes up or I am having fun doing something else. And I forget. Sound familiar? Hmm, the frog’s still there. Oh well, he can hop about until tomorrow. Or if the frog has a deadline associated with it, I believe I can put it off until the last minute and still meet the deadline. Ah, yes, been there, done that…


Moon Rise in our “front yard”

So there are things I do to accomplish anything:

Institutionalize certain tasks first thing in the morning:

  1. Make bed
  2. Shower

Institutionalize certain tasks last thing at night:

Make list of to do’s for the next day — things that must be done, no matter how unpleasant in anticipation — my frogs

  1. Make list of goals just to remind myself what they are and big picture how I’m doing in achieving them — at least one of item 1 had better be getting me to item 2!


    What’s your dream? What’s your goal?


Why Write My Dream Down?

We suggested that you write your dream down.


To see if it is ready to act upon!

Checklist for Turning Dream Into Reality: Write down all the answers to the questions below.

What is your dream? Write it down in as much specificity as you can.

Why do you want it? This will help remind you when things get tough as you move ahead. Write down both the pros and cons of your action and explore them with your friends and acquaintances.

When do you want it to happen? If your dream needs to be broken down into steps, this is the place to do it. This will help you plan how much time to spend on each step.

Breaking a big dream down helps us make the tasks involved seem more realistic and helps us estimate how much time we’ll need to accomplish our goal.

Put an estimate of the time, money, scope, and people needed to accomplish each step.

Where do you want it to happen? If your dream needs to happen in a place different from where you are now, you need to add the step of moving to the new location as something that you must have in your plan.

Who will you ask to help? If your dream needs other people to act, then enlisting their help should be part of your plan.

Who do you want to share the dream with? If your dream is to spend some future time with someone else doing something else, this is an integral part of dreaming, not just doing. Start the conversation and dreaming with the someone else as soon as possible.

How will you make it happen? (This is your plan.) Write down the plan in as much detail as possible.

What are the unknowns? How will you get information to answer the unknowns? Can you still act even though you don’t have answers to all the unknowns?

Having Unknowns Does Not Mean Don’t Act

Getting answers to unknowns may be a significant part of your plan. This includes finding people that you will ask to help as you find them, or dreaming with those whom you want to share the dream. Are you ready to blast off?


We’ll talk about each of the items on the checklist in our future blogs. Hang in there.

Turning a Dream into Reality

As we said in our last post, a dream must be really important to us to warrant the hard work it will take to make it real.coral-palm-2016-06-19-11-44-49-_f8a6017-edit      That said, we should not be scared of taking on a dream and turning it into our reality — just a healthy dose of understanding that it will take consistent and persistent work.

“The most difficult thing is the decision to act, the rest is merely tenacity. The fears are paper tigers. You can do anything you decide to do. You can act to change and control your life: and the procedure, the process is its own reward.”
Amelia Earhart

coral-palm-2016-06-19-11-54-45-_f8a6049-editDo you have a dream that grabs you?

Write it down. coral-palm-2016-06-19-11-54-45-_f8a6048-editThis will help you clarify it in you mind and provide the incentive to explore it and develop a plan to make it real. We’ll talk more about writing it down and investigating the specifics of your dream in our next post. Meanwhile, keep dreaming….

Ya Really Gotta Want It

coral-palm-2016-03-06-15-26-01-_f8a5438What’s your dream? And what’s the difference between a dream and a goal?

We all day dream. Most are just pleasant ways to pass time, escape reality.

But some daydreams grab us, excite us. We just know they are (or could be) something more — they are in some way important to us. coral-palm-2016-03-29-10-59-31-_f8a5522

Maybe it is a person you want to meet. Do you know someone who knows him or her? Maybe it is a place you want to go. Do you know someone else who has been there? Maybe it is something you want to do. Do you have to skills to do it or do you have to acquire them?

Where are you in the daydream spectrum?  coral-palm-2016-03-29-11-08-00-_f8a5523

• Maybe vaguely unsatisfied with something? Clarify what you  want, not just what you don’t want. For example, if your job sucks, what is it you really want to do or what are you good at? Do you want to work for someone else or  for yourself? Do you know others who have what looks like a  decent job and have you asked them what their job entails?

• If you are wanting to change something, are you just thinking about it or do you know what you want and why? When do you want it? Who can help you? Who do you want to share it with?  Do you know where you want it? Do you have a plan for how to make it happen? coral-palm-2016-04-05-06-08-39-_f8a5575

If you are just thinking about following through on a dream, write down exactly what your dream is and all the who, what, why,  where, when, and how’s of it.

For example, maybe I want to run a particular 5K race in my town next year. Have I raced before? Do I just want to complete such a race or do I want to win it? What is my previous running experience? How much time is there before the race? How much time am I willing to put into practice to get into shape, if I am not already? Will the race keep me from other commitments or activities? Am I racing for some special charity and/or for myself and my health? Should I get checked out by a health professional before training and/or running in the official race? Where am I going to practice? Is there a running group or a friend that I might practice with? Is there a registration fee and a deadline for registration? If the race is out of town, do I need to make overnight hotel arrangements? Do I have the proper running gear? coral-palm-2016-05-03-12-21-40-_fca5587

It is important to be as specific as possible about your day dream so that you can turn that day dream into a goal and put together a plan that will lead you to success.

We’ll talk more about turning a dream into reality in the next few posts. Do you have a daydream that really grabs you? What is it?