Rambling over Coffee: Finding each other again after 30 years - childhood sweethearts

Last night, just before bed, I had an email from an old childhood friend.  It had one word in the subject line and no text at all; just a photo.  It was my friend with her hand over her mouth, caught between laughing and crying as her boyfriend, in a suit coat and dress pants, was down on one knee with a ring box in his hand.

"Engaged" was the subject line.

And I got a couple little happy tears in my eyes.  

Once upon a time, in a little town far, far away...  there were two teenage girls that met the summer after eighth grade and became fast friends.  When the new school year started they shared a locker, were lucky enough to get the same gym class slot, and cemented a friendship that has lasted through 30 years.

I'm not sure we've seen each other more than two or three times in the past 25 years; as relocations have taken us all over the country and we are usually about 1100 miles away from each other at any given time. But the friendship was still there.  Even if we were both so incredibly busy with our jobs, marriages, raising teenagers and had absolutely insane schedules, there was a Christmas card in the mail and an email every now and then....

But then, a couple years ago, she suddenly went silent.


During a solo cross-country trip the summer before last, I was back in my little hometown, where I knew my friend and her husband had relocated to a few years earlier.

I knew their address, so I decided to pop in and surprise them.

As I parked in the driveway I was confused for a second as I saw a toddler's playset in the back yard.  All their kids were 17-23 years old.  Too old for kids toys, my friend was a critical care nurse and didn't do daycare in her home.  They didn't have any grandkids (that I knew of) but I went to the door anyway.

I knocked.
And knocked.
Just as I was leaving a young man came to the door that I didn't recognize.
I explained I was from out of town and looking for my friends - did they still live here?


This man had moved in about 3 months earlier.
I asked if he knew if my friends still lived in town? (It's a TINY TOWN so yes, he would know.)  Did the husband still work at XYZ and the wife still work at ABC?

He had a very strange look on his face.  He said yes, he believed the husband still worked at XYZ.  He didn't know about the wife... and he just kind of trailed off.

But ok!  I thanked him and left.
That evening I was to meet up with an old friend from high school who still lives in the area that I hadn't seen in more years than I even remembered.
About an hour into the "whatever happened to...."  discussion, I mentioned I had stopped by our old friends house but apparently they don't live there anymore.

Her eyes got big.
Her mouth opened wide, closed and she smiled.
"You didn't hear about that!?"

Because I don't have a Facebook account, I miss out on all the gossip of friends and family.  I like it that way actually.  So apparently I missed out on a real soap opera played out in public in a small town.

The storyline was pretty typical of married man and married woman flirt, cross some lines and then make it a long term line-crossing relationship.  Both had spouses and kids.  One was in a very trusted, public career.  Crazy enough, a lot of people seemed to know about it.  You can't hide anything for long in a small town.

But although all these people knew about it... no one told his wife.

And when she finally found out about it, it almost killed her.  She had NO idea.

And when the hurt and shock turned to anger she took to Facebook.  She ripped that little town and their secrets to shreds, she called out those who chose to cover it up rather than let her know what was going on.  She blasted with both guns and took no prisoners.  Laid it all out there.

And then... went silent.

The fallout was separation, moving out, fighting, relocation, divorce... it was ugly and messy.

She cut off everyone and everything from that little town.  Immersed herself in a new job, new location.

Her silence was her healing.

And during that healing time she started chatting with an old friend on Facebook. Someone from our 8th and 9th grade high school days when we were the bestest of friends.

As a matter of fact, it was guy and not just a guy, but a guy she dated back then, the summer after 8th grade.

And I was with her the day he asked her to go out with him and she didn't walk on the ground the rest of the day.  She floated.  The blissful smile on her face, her feet never touched the ground.

They dated for awhile, but we were young, teens and... life.

So soon they broke up and she dated a couple other people and then she dated the guy she would go on to marry, and divorce.

And before long the chatting with an old friend on Facebook, turned to friendship.  Friendship turned to dating.

And time heals wounds.

She was healed.  Her heart and soul had gotten through the grief and she was gloriously happy for the first time in almost three years.

We've been in touch again over the past 2 years and it's been great to have that dear friend back.  We've not seen each other yet as we are again, 1100 miles away from each other and her job, kids, life is there.  Mine is just as busy here. But old childhood friends are gold.  If she actually needed anything or asked me to, I'd drop everything in a heartbeat to get to her.   

And last night, when I saw my friend laughing, caught in the moment of the proposal, my heart puffed up, happy tears came to my eyes.

That boy that asked her out the summer before ninth grade and made her float 10 feet off the ground with happiness... was again making her laugh, float with happiness, and asking her to be his wife, 30+ years later.

It finds a way.

Mars and Venus Starting Over: A Practical Guide for Finding Love Again After a Painful Breakup, Divorce, or the Loss of a Loved One


Should there be an ordinance specifying you must tell your adult siblings before you divorce?

After living all over the country, sometimes up to 2000 miles from family, we happened to be living in the Northern Mid-west and both of my husbands sisters happened to be living in the next state.  Close enough we we joked about living 'near' each other again but not so close that we actually got to see each other unless we all ended up at my father-in-laws home at the same time for his birthday or other random time of the year.  We typically got to see each other about once, maybe twice a year.

When we met at the father-in-laws for his birthday, it was a grand old weekend except one of our brother-in-laws couldn't make it.  At the time he had picked up a 'second job' and was working weekends and he couldn't get off.  My husband was especially bummed because he really liked his brother-in-law... he joked he even liked him more than his liked his sister!  He is a great guy.  We missed seeing him.  Another get together and brother-in-law was working.  Time passed.

It was October and we decided since we hadn't seen family in a while we'd invite my husbands side up for Thanksgiving.  I even decided to send out cute Thanksgiving 'invitations' to everyone to make it official.  The invites were mailed out and... we got a letter.

Strange!  Why would your sister write?

"This is a bit awkward, and we weren't really ready to tell anyone yet, but your Thanksgiving invitation brought it to a head..."  "We've been living apart and we are getting a divorce....."


That brother-in-law we'd loved for 15 years?

We lost him in the divorce.

And we didn't even get to say good-bye.

Time went on and that sister-in-law married again.  This new husband was about 7 years her junior and happened to be my age, which gave us a few things in common.  He was awesome!  This guy was funny and sweet and easy to talk to.  Again, Mr. Coffee and I just loved him!  And again... my husband joked he liked him even more than his own sister!  (Joking!  But... you know, kinda real.  We really loved this guy!)

We did a couple more moves cross country and they did one move themselves.  We were about 9 hours away from each other, which was closer than we had been in years!  Yay!  Let's get together!  So once a year we'd all get together at our home for a long weekend of hanging out, drinking, eating, laughing, and doing nothing but hanging out on the deck and the patio and having a great time.

And then suddenly, one day... poof!

The email came.

"We're getting a divorce....."

And dangit!  We didn't even get to say goodbye again!  

It's like having a good friend suddenly move away and you never got to say goodbye. Or maybe even like they died without you getting to see them one last time.

There honestly IS some grieving that goes on there!  It took us about two years to 'get over' losing that brother-in-law.  Even now, a few years later, when his name comes up, there is a pause in the conversation and someone will say, "I miss that guy.  He was a great guy."

It's too bad there isn't a rule (I don't want to say law because dang, our country has WAY TOO MANY FREAKIN' LAWS - we LOVE to make new laws don't we?) but you know... a rule of etiquette or maybe a little tiny ordinance suggestion that if you are going to get a divorce, and you know your family really likes your spouse, perhaps you should give them a chance to say good-bye.  Do some grieving.  Morn the loss of a '... really great guy'.  Or woman.

(For the record, even the sister-in-law agrees both of them were really great guys!  She doesn't like to be 'tied down' and feels constricted when she's married, and she did have regrets after the second divorce... but she loves being single so yes, you can divorce and still think your ex is a 'great guy'.)

But darnit, it would have been nice to have had one last good-bye before we lost them in the divorce.

They're called "MAN HOURS" because a woman would have had that shit done in 20 minutes.


This morning Mr. Coffee and I were having a discussion about some of the projects, tasks, maintenance, etc. around here.  I was getting ready to run errands to the nursery to order another 3.5 cubic feet of gravel to be delivered, to Lowe's for weed killer, paint and plants, Walmart garden center for 8 bushes.  Painting the patio furniture, painting the family room wall, cleaning the carpet, hanging the picture frames and wall decor... on top of the cooking, house cleaning, laundry, bathroom cleaning, grocery shopping... and more.

So this morning I finally brought up the fact that the ONE project he's been 'working on' for SIX WEEKS is taking too long and he has got to step up and help with the 200 other projects that need to be done.

For the record, that project is that I bought an unfinished cornhole game board that just needed to be stained and finished.  A two or three day project.... I thought.  He's now managed to spread this project out to something he's been working on for like, 6 weeks.  He decided to use gunstock oil to finish it instead of polyurethane or other varnish.  Fine.  I've used gunstock oil on a table - I did a thin layer to seal, followed up some quick additions and boom. Done. 

His projects however, normally take about 15 times as long as the normal person.  I KNOW this about him. I love him anyway.  So I haven't said much up to now.  But this week when he's been down working on it for another 1 1/2 hours and I stand there and watch him (he doesn't know I'm here) I see him dribble a few drops of oil on the fabric and slowly and methodically rub it in, in circles and swipes about 4 inches wide...  NO WONDER it's been 6 weeks and there is NO END IN SIGHT.

That whole "takes 15 times longer than average" thing?  Not making that up.  I'll never forget when I was busy running from one task to another one day and saw we had a light bulb out in one of the rooms.  I asked "Can you put a new light bulb in?"  He stopped, thought for a moment and said, "Yeah, I'm off on Tuesday so I can do it then."

I KID YOU NOT.  Obviously I had a #WTF? moment and changed the light bulb myself in like, 15 seconds.  I don't need to schedule an entire day off to change a fricken light bulb.

SO....  this morning as I wanted help with landscaping, weed control, painting the deck, anything BUT those darn cornhole boards;

I asked him how many layers he thinks the boards will need to be done. 
He wants them to have about 20.
I asked him how many layers there are currently on the boards?
About thinks about 8.

Oh good gracious.

So I told him no.  He cannot do this ONE project for 1-2 hours at at time, 3 times a week for the next month, while I'm left doing literally everything else in the entire household that needs to be done.  I need his help on the OTHER 17 projects that are taking priority right now.


Silence. Then a sigh.  Then.....

"Ok where's the list?"
"What list?"
"The list of what needs to be done."
"There isn't a list.  There's a hundred things that need to be done."
"Well show me a list."
"There isn't a list because you and I haven't sat down to make one.  You can just look around to see what needs to be done.  Or... we can make a list together if you want."


"But you always have a list."

Tonight after dinner... I'm making a list.  


Well, duh! Someone stole my mittens!

Clicking around the internet I came across a pretty old random blog that had a photo of a fluffy pair of white mittens.  Adult mittens.  Mittens that I suddenly remembered I HAD A PAIR OF JUST LIKE THAT.

I was a poor 16 year old - poor as in monetarily poor.  Unlike some kids who had parents actually buy them necessities, I had been purchasing my own clothes, shampoo, deodorant, makeup and what-not since I was starting 8th grade. And I did this on a whopping $1 an hour babysitting income I could get working my butt off every weekend, and then managed to get a cashiering job at a local store in our tiny town for $3.35 an hour.

And I had bought myself a pair of white mittens that I luuuuuuuuuved.  I was so happy about those mittens because I rarely had anything new or cool or anything at all really.  I had a friend with very generous parents who boasted she could wear a completely different outfit every day of her life right down to the socks and underwear and never once have to repeat any part of our ensemble.  Me?  Well, I hoped no one noticed I wore my yellow and white Coca-Cola shirt twice this week.  (I was soooo proud of that shirt.  I saved up enough to buy one - just like all the cool, rich kids in school had).

(I had a yellow and white one... and for Christmas I bought my boyfriend a blue and white one - believe me, these were SO COOL at the time!)  That shirt took 36 hours of babysitting to earn!

But I got sidetracked.
This post isn't about my yellow and white Coca-Cola shirt.
It's about the white mittens I bought.
And I loved.
And I felt like I owned something just like the cool kids had.
Because the cheerleaders at our school also had similar mittens.
But the sad part of my story is that I only got to use them for like, 2 months?
Because suddenly I couldn't find them.

I remember looking for them all over my room, my house and my car.
I recall thinking I might have lost them at my friend Nicole's house but I never found them there either.

I suppose over time I forgot about them and stopped looking.

I haven't thought about my white mitten in years.
Like, decades worth of years.

But this afternoon when I saw that post on a random old blog from the early 2000's, I instantly realized something.
Someone probably stole my mittens.
It's kind of a 'duh' moment - of course.  Especially since they were very thick, comfortable, cute, bright white, ultra-popular at the time and... new.
And they disappeared.

And yeah, someone probably did steal them.

I can't believe it's taken me, like 30 years to figure that out.

Meh...  it's just the coffee talking again.

Where are they now? The kids from the Underoos ads!

When the color lasts, and the fit lasts, and the quality lasts, and the joy lasts, it's got to be Underoos... the underwear that's fun to wear.

Underoos is a brand of underwear primarily for children, produced by the Fruit of the Loom company. The packages include a matching top and bottom for either boys or girls, featuring a character from popular entertainment media, especially superhero comics

Earlier this week I remembered "Underoos" (you know, the OMGosh so hugely popular underwear sets for kids in the late 70's and early 80's) and was only a little, tiny bit still upset that I was never able to own a pair.  Honestly you couldn't even buy them in my hometown.  A tiny little town in the middle of the heartland of America surrounded by mostly farmland.  We had a Ben Franklin store as our only major retailer and although they did carry a small selection of clothing, I'm not sure I ever saw Underoos there or I'm sure I would have begged for them so hard at Christmas time for like, six years in a row that perhaps I would have gotten a set of them at least once.

Oh - by the way - the 'Ben Franklin' store?  I don't know if they are still around or not but not but I quickly jumped over to Wiki for you, just in case you didn't know what I was talking about there.

Ben Franklin is a chain of five and dime and arts and crafts stores found in small towns throughout the United States, currently owned by Promotions Unlimited of Mount Pleasant, Wisconsin. They are organized using a franchise system, with individual stores owned by independent proprietors. It was perhaps the first retail franchise, starting in 1927. They are named after Benjamin Franklin, taking a cue in their merchandise offerings from Franklin's saying, "A penny saved is a penny earned."

With the memory of Underoos bringing back some of that childhood nostalgia, I found myself singing their commercial jingle in my head and their tag-line "underwear that's fun to wear" playing over and over in my head.  Kids everywhere at that time knew that phrase and used it often as it was just 'fun' to yell out or shout, like when you were swinging really high on the playground swings, or jumping off high stairs or doing anything really.  When you are a goofy little 8 year old kid, screaming out anything that has the word 'underwear' in it is hilarious.

As I googled Underoos I saw the image I posted at the top of this post of the two kids modeling the Wonder Woman and SpiderMan Underoos.  IMMEDIATELY I was 9 years old again, and looking at this advertisement in a magazine and dreaming about the day I might get to be the proud owner of Underoos.  And wishing so badly I was that little girl in the ad because she was soooo lucky.

I never, ever, did get Underoos.  We couldn't afford them at the time even if they had been available for sale in our town.  I'm almost positive that one of my little brothers (3 of them) did get SpiderMan Underoos eventually.  Since all our Christmas shopping, school clothes and shoes came on order from a Sears catalog and delivered to the shoe store in town which also served as a 'pick up' location for the town's Sears mail orders, I can only assume my Mom found them in the Sears catalog.  Or they were possibly bought at a neighbor's garage sale for a quarter.  Yeah, it was the early 80's and it could have happened that way.

But the REAL REASON that I even sat down with my cup of hot coffee was to post about how this week, when I saw that old magazine ad for Underoos that I remembered SO CLEARLY and remember loving so much and being SO jealous of... is 'where are they now?'

.... don't mind my rambling.  It's just the coffee talking again.


Although we have the internet now and everything... EVERYTHING is available at the click of a button, you have to remember that in the 70's and 80's ordering was done by mail or telephone and you found your items through catalogs mailed to your house.  If you didn't see it in a catalog, it didn't exist.  So anyone born in the last couple decades is probably saying to themselves "They still sell superhero underwear, what's the big deal?"  Oh child... it was a big deal!  Ha ha ha.  It was a REALLY big deal at the time.

But yes, today you can buy all sorts of superhero underwear... and you don't even have to be a little kid to wear them.  A quick glance at Amazon showed me that if you are a grown man, who wears size 2XL you can STILL even wear your superhero underwear if you wish!  

Isn't the internet grand?  But I'd still like to know where the two little kids from the ad are today. 

Shazam! Mens Underoos T-Shirt & Briefs Set (2XL)

bioWorld Underoos Boys Superman Underwear Shirt Set (Small, 6) Blue 
Underoos Wonder Woman Girls 4




It's just the coffee talking again....

It's just the coffee talking again....

Is 'Random Tuesday Thoughts' still a thing?  Because tonight I have no idea what I'm going to post about... I'm just going to sit here and type.  And it's Tuesday.  And there used to be a thing called "Random Tuesday Thoughts".

I was like, um, 10 years ago?  In the blogging world that is.  Because yes, I was blogging back then. I've been blogging since before 'blog' was a word.  Before the roots of blog (web log) was a word.  Back when no one knew what to call it.  In 1998 I built my first website from scratch by teaching myself HTML code - and called my site "my homepage".  Later I called it my 'site' because I thought the word "web log" was stupid and the shortened version "blog" one of the ugliest words I had ever heard. That was a long time ago....

Actually... CoffeeTalking was pretty big back in the day.  Pretty large following of readers, comments, on all the top blog rolls.  Invited to the very, very, very first ever BlogHer - and back then, no one even know what that was... or what it would/could be anyway.  Was that 2005-ish?   (No, I never went that first year and then the next year they actually kicked me out of BlogHer because I had OTHER COMPANIES ADS on my site.  GASP!  Yep, I have NO IDEA what they do now or if they even still run their own ads/logos or what... but back in the day, they wanted their ads and ONLY THEIR ADS on someone's page.  If you so much as THOUGHT about blogging for another company or getting paid by any other company for an ad or review on your page... BOOM the ax would fall.  You got a very snarky little email informing you that you couldn't sit at their table!  You had to take your lunch and go find your own 'new' table because they were... exclusive.)

At that time I was making enough money blogging that I was able to quit my not so awesome part time job and just blog full and still make my SUV payment. For a short time (before a LOT of things in the blogging world changed) I was making good money without "working" because I LOVED writing so it wasn't work to me.  It was fun and I was paid well for it.  But then some things in the blogging world changed a million kazillion bajillion people 'discovered' starting their own blogs and then India and China discovered blogging and well... soon it got a little harder to make money with the two companies I was working with so I slowly just stopped with the whole 'paid' thing - discontinued ALL my affiliate marketing and ads and cut off everything. And then I got a 'real' job again.

Actually for a year or two, Coffee Talking completely shut down.  100% down.  After a time I drug it out, dusted it off and started it up again but by that time my kids were older and old enough I was starting to feel weird about telling stories about them and our family and didn't want to post any photos of them.

Ah, poor Coffee Talking.  Has never been the same since.  But I did decide to do the Amazon ad thing so that's the only company I have ads from right now - makes it easier for taxes too.  So... shameless plug - if you need or plan to buy anything from Amazon, please pretty please consider clicking on them from my site?  Even if you want to buy a... Snuggie.  Or an Engelbert Humperdinck music cd... or a size 52FFF bra or a new Viking Range for your kitchen... anything.  I don't know who you are or what you buy - but I'd be thankful if you did it through my site as that $.03 I may make off the sale can go to pay for my .com renewal each year!  Ha ha.

Dang.  NONE of this is what I kind of thought I'd be blogging about!

Things that had filtered through my head before I opened the editor were;

  • Family names from a couple hundred years of your family history...
  • Local town and city Facebook pages where people pretend to post 'caring' questions which in reality are so blatantly BEGGING for the latest gossip it's sickening
  • Drama queens online
  • Morphing words and names to make a new word/name and how much I HATE HATE HATE this.  Did it all start with the Brad and Jennifer and then Brad and Angelina thing?  Is that when it really started to take off?  It seems like Bennifer was the first time I started to notice and OMGosh it just never STOPPED after that.  WHO IN THEIR RIGHT MIND THINKS THOSE STUPID BLENDED NAMES AND WORDS ARE CUTE???  Idiots. People who are too lazy to say both names or both words. That's who.
  • How hap hap happy I am that we are a cat-less family.  We WERE a cat family.  Then they passed away from old age at 15-ish years old.  And after 15+ years of owning 2 cats - I realized the awesomeness of being a 'no cat' family.  I could open the door without automatically blocking the doorway with my foot, slipping out and slamming the door before Sam snuck out!  I could have WHITE chair cushions and a WHITE couch for the first time and the girl cat wasn't going to get spots and stains on it.  (She was our urinary tract QUEEN.  Even the vet pretty much gave up on her and told us she's just basically going to get then ALL THE TIME and it's going to be a part of her life.  The other cat?  Got like, two his entire long life).  I could have FLOWERS out on the TABLE and NO ONE WAS GOING TO EAT THEM!!!!  Our window blind cords could exist without being eaten and chewed too short to function.  (Each cat their issues - neither of them did the same things...).  The boy cat, even though he was fixed, still loved to put his butt up against the baseboard and wall and pee all over it.  Thereby soaking cat urine into the wood and staining the heck out of the walls, baseboards, linoleum laundry room floor.  
  • People (IRL) that just seem to always be fighting and not speaking to someone at at all times.  I hosted a Christmas 'shin-dig' and had to take a guests father off the guest list because he was fighting with them that week and not speaking.  I don't know how you can go through life fighting and arguing with people literally 24/7.  Always hating at least 1, 2, 10 people at a time.  Family members, neighbors, coaches... 
That's probably enough for now.  Boy, could I go on.

But... I've wasted just enough time.  As now it's time to let my dogs out for their last bathroom break of the night before bed and then I can blessedly head to bed myself and read myself to sleep.

So... the newest "ghost caught on camera" story going viral and making some people big bucks... I believe in ghosts but I call BS on this one.

Have you seen this one?

Michigan couple claims they captured a 'ghost' on nanny cam after baby appears to have deep scratches on her face

Source(s) I read it first on Yahoo - which stated and linked that they got it from  here:  DailyMail. 

A Michigan couple believes they captured a “ghost” on their baby’s nanny-cam after their daughter woke up with three purple scratches on her face. 

A young couple in Michigan claims that their home is possibly haunted by a malicious ghost after their daughter appeared to have three deep “purple scratches” on her face. They also believe they have captured the poltergeist on their nanny cam.

Now, they’re ready to move out.

Heather Brough, 25, and her fiancé, Josh Higgins, 30, set up the camera after they discovered the purple scratches on their one-year-old, Lily. They believe what they captured on the camera can only be described as a ghost.

Upon reviewing the footage, the couple believes they saw a male figure walk quickly past Lily’s crib, as she pops up and watches him move through the room, before the alleged spirit vanishes in midair.
According to the Daily Mail, a paranormal investigator, called in to look into their claims, confirmed their home was haunted.

The couple currently resides in Higgins’ mother’s guest house in Highland, Michigan. According to the mother, Kris, before the couple moved in, an elderly lady lived there. Tragically, she lay with a broken hip for “a very long time” before she was found dead at the bottom of the stairs. Then, her “schizophrenic brother” lived in the home until his death a few years later.

“This is a spirit — I don’t know what its intentions are, but at this point it’s becoming physically harmful. This has made us want to leave as soon as possible. As soon as possible we’re out of here,” Brough told the outlet.
Brough reports that leading up to this event the family has heard sounds of screaming, stomping, and laughing. Brough, herself, has been awoken by what sounds like a man shouting. Until they find their new home, the couple has decided to never leave their daughter alone in a room.


I'm open to the idea of ghosts/spirits/something.  I've lived in a haunted house as a child, and over the past few decades had many strange things happen that are unexplained.  So it's not that I'm being rude or I'm a die-hard unbeliever...  but I DO call 'bs' on this story.

First off - babies and toddlers scratch themselves ALL THE TIME.  Even deep scratches.  That is why baby 'mittens' are sold; because from day one out of the womb they scratch themselves accidentally.  And toddlers absolutely do.  I 100% believe the one-year-old little girl in this story scratched her own face.  Another reason kids can wake with scratches is if they are sleeping on a feather pillow.  My son woke with new scratches on his face when he was about 12 years old and we finally figured out it was the new feather pillows I was 'reviewing' for a company.  My son was a deep sleeper - good luck trying to wake him during the night for anything!  So he never felt them but we figured it out, went back to his old pillow and it was solved.

Besides, do you really think a ghost is going to be all like, "Hey!  There is a random little baby!  I think I'm going to scratch her face for no reason at all!"  (And most adult males don't even have fingernails long enough TO scratch someone - they bite them or keep them clipped pretty short.  And do ghosts even HAVE the ability to scratch?  They are... spirits after all...)

So, between the normal activity of babies and toddlers ALWAYS coming up with scratches on their faces for seemingly no reason because that's what they do.  They scratch their faces - even deep scratches. Let's move on.

Second - What brand camera is this?  I happen to know from personal experience that NEST brand cameras have 'phantom apparitions' show up because many times; it's replaying the last image(s) or an old image - even if you don't subscribe to the recording feature.

As a matter of fact, I had a heart stopping moment just a few months ago when this happened.  My husband and I were the only ones home and it was night time so our cameras were on night vision mode.  He was in the family room on the other side of the house, in his chair, watching television and answering work emails on his ipad.  I was in the office but was going to let our dogs out the back door in the living room. 

Right before I stood up to go call the dogs and let them 'out' I opened the camera app up on my phone and set it down on the desk, walked into our living room, let out the dogs and walked back to office.  I picked up my phone and my heart started to beat faster when I saw I had 'alerts' on the camera that I assumed were me, but when I swiped up to look at the history of the last minute or two, there was clearly a man in shorts and a t-shirt standing at the door, looking towards the camera right as I was walking into the EMPTY ROOM.  

I never saw anyone, never felt anything but according to the timestamp on our camera, I should have been looking right at him as I entered the room and walked THROUGH HIM to open the door.

As I looked at the images, there were empty images, suddenly he was there, stood there, then vanished. 

One of my brothers and I talk about some of the strange things that happen in our lives and debunk them or solve them - instead of jumping to 'ghost' conclusions right away.  So these images are from the images I sent him right after it happened....

I have two cellphones so I had it open on one and was video recording for my brother, the 'alerts' of this person in our living room... and these are some screenshots from that.

 There was no one in that room at the time.
I was in the open, adjoining office and my husband was across the house in the family room
and had been there for a couple hours.
Also, my husband was wearing jeans, socks and a long sleeve shirt.
The man in this image is in shorts and a short sleeved shirt and is barefoot.


A close up of the strange man who showed up on my security camera.... the time stamp is right before I was walking into the room to go to the door he is standing in front of, to let our dogs out.  I saw no one at all.  I let the dogs out, went back to my office, picked up my phone and saw these "your camera has spotted someone" alerts.

I do not believe it was ghost.
What I DO believe is that when I opened the security camera app on my phone and laid it down on the desk and then walked into this room, the camera briefly showed an image from some point in the previous few days? Weeks? Of what was probably my husband.  It showed it briefly, then reset and started to record live again. 

The image does resemble my husband in many ways, including how his feet are turned out at odd angles, as this is a result of his legs being casted for the first year of his life, as he was born with two club feet.  The stance of the man in the image is what leads me to believe it's just NEST grabbing an old image for a few seconds as I opened the camera app up.  Doing a fairly quick 'google' search I found MANY people with NEST brand cameras who have had phantom images pop up and disappear on their cameras.  Nothing paranormal about it.

THIRD - I clicked on the original video upload on YouTube and... people are making $$$$$ money off this video.  A company is paying for videos like this so faking it or even using a real video and claiming it's not 'you' on the video means really, nothing at all.  I also read in a comment below the article that this young couple who originally posted it are now promoting their business through it?  I didn't bother with that topic any more, but one of the comments mentioned it.

When there is money to be made on something... ALWAYS proceed with caution.  Also, attention.  Being Instagram famous and getting your 15 minute of fame on YouTube is HUGE HUGE HUGE.  The need for attention these days is unbelievable... so again... meh.

I also have found that people with REAL unexplained things going on in their homes or lives, don't shout it from the mountain tops.  Legit sightings and strange things are usually quietly kept to yourself, or shared with your family members, close friends... that's about it.  I am not sure why, but in the past 40 years, this, I have found to be true over and over.  Stories and shared in small groups when the conversations come up or often, people have kept quiet about it. 

Anyway... my time to "ramble over coffee' is actually up.  It was up long ago but this post took longer to type out than I wanted it to.  Even though I have more to say on the subject!  Ha ha.

But bottom line?

NOPE.  Not believing this one.  Baby scratched herself in her sleep or on a toy, etc. and the image?  Legit person (DAD?) walking through the room. 


Think twice about giving money to panhandlers on the side of the road - they may be trying to scam you

A $500 purse and a new cellphone worth almost $1000 - but her sign is begging for money for 'diapers' and 'baby stuff'.

Source - https://www.facebook.com/unionpolicenj/photos/a.306694949409635/2081690611910051

It was rather ironic I came upon this story this afternoon as soon as I sat down at my computer with fresh coffee.  You see, I was just reading on my own hometown news and following a discussion in the comments about some people 'working the exit' of our nearest interstate, pan-handling, but then getting into a really nice vehicle, driving 1 mile to the next exit, picking up their friend and taking off.  In the comments, some well-meaning but clueless, big hearted people were saying how the man asking for money couldn't be lying, because he even had a military 'VET' hat on.  One young person argued, and honestly believed you could only get a 'military vet' hat if you had gone through a background check and proved you were in the military.   Yes, she was quickly righted on that fact - that you can buy them EVERYWHERE.  No background checks needed.

So anyway; I was just reading about people scamming by asking for money when in fact it was their 'job' and they were making $60,000-100,000 a year tax free by doing so.

And then I saw this one...  sigh.

A woman from Romania is making big dollars... from the big hearts of Americans.

Union Township (New Jersey) Police approached a woman walking in and out of traffic on a busy street with a sign that read, “I have 1 baby please in the name of God help me to buy baby stuff and diapers.” The sign also featured a photo of a young child. According to the post on Facebook, the woman claimed to be from Romania and living in Queens.

Our Street Crimes Unit officers found this woman walking in and out of traffic with the below sign attempting to scam people. She was asking for cash for her baby, but they pointed out to her that she had a $500 purse, some jewelry and a new iPhone X and did not appear to be in critical need of cash.

Their investigation led her to admit that she and several other women got dropped off to panhandle throughout NJ. She was issued a ticket for Impeding the flow of traffic and received a township summons Soliciting without a permit.

“It is nice to be charitable, but it’s not a good idea to donate to someone on the side of the road with a sign,” the Union New Jersey Police Department wrote. “If you see someone who may need help, you can call our HQ and our officers will respond and assess.”

Meh, it's just the coffee talking again............


Rambling over Coffee: A song from my childhood - Once Upon a Unicorn (I think???)

About a year ago, I had an old memory pop into my head of a song I recall singing in grade school.  I remember I loved it and had never heard it before, but we had a music teacher that was only there for 1 year before moving on to bigger and greener pastures than our little bitty school, and he had chosen some incredibly 'different' songs for our concerts that year he was there.

One of the songs at our Christmas concert was about a unicorn and oh how I loved unicorns back then!  My bedroom was filled with unicorn mirrors, figurines, stuffed unicorns, sparkly 'sun catchers' in the shapes of unicorns, music boxes and more...  and be still my heart - we got to sing about them at our Christmas concert!

I don't recall the teacher's name, but I can see his face.  I can even remember his wife and his little girl sitting in the audience that evening.  I recall the 'banter' he had with the audience before the song started.  He asked the crowd if anyone had ever seen a unicorn before.  Among the twitters and chuckles, one man raised his hand.  The music teacher, a bit caught off guard (because, who was going to say YES they've seen a unicorn?) asked the man, slouched down in his seat, with his arms cross and his farmer's style cap on his head this;  "Well sir, may I ask you where you saw that unicorn!?"  The man just smiled and shook his head no.

The crowd laughed... and we started to sing.

I wanted to find this song online.  I was hoping for a version on Youtube or a recording so I could hear it again, but I never found a copy of it.  I don't give up hope though, as I think I've blogged previously about a couple different songs I searched for years for online and they were no where to be found... until the internet got bigger.  As the internet grows and more and more information is added, it gets easier and easier to find 'things'.

So I believe that someday, someone will upload a copy of this song that I recall from one concert from my childhood and I'll hear it again.

Until then, I have bits and pieces of the song in my memory... although I can't promise the lyrics are correct!  Ha ha.  I sing it in my head sometimes anyway.

Once Upon a Unicorn

Once upon a time, and far away, 
in a land that was enchanted and serene...
To a little lad, one sunny day, 
came a creature that was never, ever seen.

For where most had two horns,
he only had one!
And a coat of white that bedazzled the sun!

He said, "Come and run with me!  Come and run with me!
In the sunlight, in the moonlight, come and run with me!"

"For I am a unicorn!  I'm a horse with a single horn! And now it is Christmas morn!  Come and run with me!"

Related products available through Amazon;

Once Upon a Unicorn: An illustrated children's book
100 Singalong Songs For Kids
Children's Songs, A Collection of Childhood Favorites


Rambling over Coffee: Are you too stupid to camp? Maybe.

Firefighters slam 'idiot' first-time campers for fire in 'controversial' Facebook post

SOURCE:  Firefighters slam 'idiot' first-time campers for fire in 'controversial' Facebook post

A group of young first-time campers were called out on Facebook by firefighters in Victoria, Australia, last week after lighting a fire in the middle of a forest without taking the proper precautions first.

“WHAT DO IDIOTS DO WHEN THEY GO CAMPING IN THE BUSH FOR THE FIRST TIME?” the post on the Woodend CFA Facebook page read. “Well, of course, you drive [into] the middle of a tinder dry forest and light a campfire that has [the] potential to start a seriously dangerous bush fire.”

“They had not cleared an area around the fire or dug a pit. They just lit the fire on the ground surrounded by dry fuels. They also just put many large logs several [meters] long onto the fire and let it spread along the logs,” the firemen wrote, also noting the young men only had about six small water bottles to put the fire out with.

In a follow-up post on Facebook Monday, firemen apologized for their anger, but shared an update about the campers.

“This morning we received a call from a bush walker who was disgusted at what he discovered at the abandoned camp site. The Woodend CFA was so concerned at the description of severe littering that we drove out to inspect for ourselves,” the follow-up post read.

“The attached photos do not do justice to the scope and spread of the waste left behind. Not only an abandoned tent and chair, but inside the tent was stacked [with] even more rubbish. There are bags of rubbish spread far and wide and left dropped at the camp site.”

However, the Woodend CFA account said they managed to get a car registration when they went out the first time and have handed over the information to the police to follow-up with the “disrespectful” first-time campers.


Coffee Pots, Landline Phones, Disk Drives.... all going the way of the dinosaurs but I like them!

Over the past 2 months I've had to make many purchases on a 'secondary' account debit card that we don't typically use as it's not our household account.  It's mostly used on vacation, large house repairs, etc.  And although I'm thankful for fraud departments at banks, I'm frustrated as heck with this particular bank because they are idiots.  So when my purchases are denied and my card is frozen, they do not let me know for 24 hours.  I've tried calling THEM at their fraud line immediately when I see a purchase isn't going through... and they always tell me I've called too soon; that I've called even before they know about it.  (This is 45 minutes AFTER it's been denied).  I've logged into my account online to see if I can approve it that way, nothing.

And to make it worse, when I've tried to verify who I am with their Asian, non-English speaking customer service department, I've spent 45 minutes on the phone with them giving them every bit of information about me - so much so that they could take out loans in my name, buy a house and cars in my name... they knew EVERYTHING about me except maybe my favorite FOOD and still couldn't verify it was me because even though my current cell phone number is ON MY ACCOUNT, they were secretly calling my OLD cell phone number to verify it was me.

Yeah... so she tells me she going to send a text to the phone number on my account.  I tell her there are 3 numbers on the account.  And the one I'm speaking to her on is a landline - because we don't get very good cell reception where I live.  

She agrees in the "I don't speak English and what you said is not on my script so I really don't know what you are saying but I'll agree with you and keep repeating 'yes, I am pleased and happy to help you with that' over and over again but have no idea what you are saying" way. 

I verify the cell phone number she is sending the text to.
I get no text.
She and I go back and forth for 10 minutes (a 45 minute call at this point and all I'm trying to do is approve a $100 purchase online, which I've given her every single bit of information about me, my husband, the store I'm trying to use it on, the exact amount the purchase is... she has our names, address, birthdates, social security numbers... everything!  But she is now telling me they can still only verify through this TEXT she is sending with a code.)

After 10 minutes of me sitting here with my cell phone in my hand, that she has sent 2 texts to; I ask her if she's sent it to the number we are talking on instead?  Because NOTHING is coming through on my cell.  She stumbles and bumbles and I finally get her to realize what I've been telling her for 10 minutes; this is a landline.

HONEST TO GOD, I DON'T THINK SHE KNEW WHAT A LANDLINE WAS.  She is young (20's) and from an Asian country where cellphones are the norm... the twit did not realize what I was saying with landline even though I explained it to her.  A light bulb FINALLY went off in her head (or someone there explained it to her) because she finally, in broken English, said, "OH!  A land line. Yes. And you cannot get text messages on that line."

Well, anyway... that wasn't even the issue.  The issues is that she was lying to me anyway.  She never sent a text.  She had called an OLD cellphone number on our account (not the one I verified with her, that was in my hand, and that we had been waiting for 10+ minutes for her text to come through on).  In frustration, I told her I would go get my OLD cellphone from the bedroom, that we rarely use and I would have her resend to that number.

Bingo.  There was no text.  But there was a voicemail... from her.

This whole time she had been lying to me and had called that phone number - once she heard her own voicemail (I turned it up loud and made her listen to it while I told her she LIED TO ME AND WASTED MY TIME by telling me to wait for a text on my other number).  All she would have had to do was ask me to verify THAT 3rd phone number on the account or asked me if there was another cell phone I could check (after she figured out a land line means you can't get texts on it) WE COULD HAVE SAVED ALMOST AN HOUR OF B.S.

All that for a $100 purchase online.

Anyway.  So I've gone through issues with this bank and trying to use my card for purchases and being denied, about 6 times now in 2+ months.

And although I didn't mean to tell that whole story, the point is... she didn't know what a LAND LINE WAS and didn't think anyone had them anymore.

Uh, yes, when you live in an area that does not get reliable cell phone reception, it's safest to have a backup.  It's called a land line.

And this week my old laptop, which I love, has started to show me that it's wanting to be used less and that I should probably get a younger model.  The thing is, I travel with this laptop, I take it everywhere with me; including the cross country road trips and camping and when visiting extended family members.  When it's evening and I'm in the middle of nowhere I love to grab my FRIENDS dvd's and watch old episodes or a favorite movie DVD.


And while I've started looking at new laptops online, I've come to find that my beloved disk drives are going the way of the dinosaurs.  Becoming extinct.

Obsolete.  Nooooooo!  (And to make it worse; I really LOVE Toshiba Satellite laptops and Toshiba stopped making those as well...  I just can't win.)

I do not want to drag around an external disk drive when I am traveling.  As a matter of fact, when I visit a particular family member, I just make sure I have a FRIENDS episode disk in the drive already and leave it there.  I know I don't have to drag around a case or anything extra and when they go to bed at 8:pm and everything is shut down for the night (yep... 8:pm) that I have the option of holing up in my little guest bed with my laptop and watching beloved Friends episodes before grabbing my ereader and reading until I get tired enough to sleep.

But internal disk drives along with the media storage drive are disappearing....  apparently no one but me wants both a land line AND a disk drive.

But wait!  It's get worse!

So apparently, channeling the inner 60 year old women living somewhere deep inside me...  I also have started to look for a regular, old coffee pot this week and guess what?  No one buys those anymore either!  Ha ha.

   I have an old, cheap coffee maker that I like to drag out if I have a number of people over at one time and need more coffee than my little single-cup brewer can make in 10 minutes; or I dread that many people using up my uber expensive k-cups OR they are people who actually LIKE the taste of 'pot coffee' which is what I call the old style coffee brewers that use a paper filter and brew into a 12 cup 'pot' carafe.  Yes, that would be my parents and my father in law who even go so far as to use Folger's pre-ground.  OMG.  It tastes like cigarette ashes... but where was I?

Oh.  So I had one, but someone borrowed it and then they broke the glass carafe.  And it's a brand that doesn't even exist anymore that I know of.  I got it on sale at Best Buy for a few bucks as an 'add-on" purchase when I was buying something else.  So I can't find the odd shaped carafe anymore to replace it.

And we have some really awesome ground coffee that was gifted to us that is very good, but it's a pain to use the little reuseable k-cups when you want 3 cups of coffee in about 15 minutes so I want to have the old, traditional CHEAP coffee brewer like my 90 year old father in law would have....  and darnit!  Those are getting hard to find too!  Ha ha.

Everyone has the single-cup brewers nowadays.  And I get that, I do too!  But that 12 cup coffee maker is going to come in handy as an option when my house is filled with 25 people sleeping here for a big gathering we have coming up in a few weeks.

While I was searching for a cheap coffee maker online yesterday it occurred to me, in the past 2 weeks I've discovered that my LANDLINE, my INTERNAL DISK DRIVE LAPTOP and my COFFEE POT are all items that are disappearing from the face of the earth... but are things that I'm grasping on to with my little fists and refusing to give up.  Because apparently I'm secretly a 65 year old women inside! Ha!

You might also be interested in some products related to this 'rambling over coffee' post - available through Amazon:

Landline Phones
Mr. Coffee 12 cup Coffee Maker
Laptops with internal DVD/Disk drives


Ah yes... that vintage white, Mickey Mouse t-shirt (The night I met my husband)

I love when something out of the blue gives me a memory flashback... a good one anyway!  And this afternoon, I just had one.  Since I was needing to update It's Just The Coffee Talking anyway, it was good timing!

I was online glancing through some news stories when I saw this ad on the side of my page.  I immediately recognized the t-shirt first.  I had that t-shirt!  And I recognized the actress as well, although I had to think for about 20 or 30 seconds which movie she was from.

Here is the ad that caught my attention due to the Mickey Mouse t-shirt....

Granted, just seeing one of my old 1980's t-shirts was cool, because I hadn't thought about that t-shirt in years but I can't say that seeing it is what made me smile.  No, it would be the memory that came with it.

That white, Mickey Mouse t-shirt is what I was wearing the night I met my would-be-husband!

I was a teenager, barely 15 - and although I had been wearing a different outfit earlier in the day, I had decided to spray paint some balloons black, not realizing the spray paint would pop the balloons.  I ended up with black paint speckled all over me.

On to outfit number two.  The second outfit, I really don't remember.  For good reason.  Because it was overshadowed by the next part of my day, which was crashing a 4-wheeler.

After a trip to the hospital emergency room, some gravel dug out of my arms, back home with no broken bones, I had changed into a Mickey Mouse t-shirt and a pair of too small turquoise satin shorts.  It was the 80's so too-small satin shorts were the 'in' thing back then.  Think WHAM "Wake Me up Before you Go Go" music video clothes... yeah, we really did dress like that.

And later that evening, in my white Mickey Mouse t-shirt and turquoise shorts, a bunch of friends stopped by my house to say hey and hang out.  And one of those guys, was the newly licensed 16 year old that drove them... and he was destined to be my husband.

So yeah, that white Mickey Mouse t-shirt that Kirsten Baker was wearing when she played Terry in Friday the 13th is the same exact t-shirt I happened to be wearing when my future husband stopped by my home with a group of friends and I officially met him and talked with him for the first time.

I love unexpected and random good memories popping up during the day!  Hadn't thought of this t-shirt in years...  literally years and years!


You might also be interested in these Mickey House t-shirts I found available through Amazon when posting this random memory over afternoon coffee:

Disney Mickey Mouse Classic Pose T-Shirt
Disney Men's Mickey Mouse Classic Kick T-Shirt Medium White
Disney Womens Mickey Mouse Varsity Football Tee (White, X-Large)