Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Thoughts 30 - Equality

Warning: Rambling post ahead.  I'm not going to be too structured or edit too much...I'm letting my thoughts flow freely.

I've been described as opinionated a few (many) times in my life.  Yep.  Opinions.  I've got 'em.  I like to think of myself as willing to listen to others' opinions too.  I love sharing and exchanging thoughts and ideas.  I don't love disrespect.  When sharing opinions turns into name-calling, mud-slinging, and all-around disrepect, I switch off.

I've shared my opinion on this topic with others several times before, but I don't think I've shared it here.  In light of Friday's Supreme Court ruling recognizing gay marriage, now is a good time for me to share my thoughts.  I got a lot of them.

I believe in equality.  I believe the American (and Australian) government should support equality regardless of gender, age, race, ethnicity, religion, and sexual orientation.  I believe this should apply to the ability to legally get married in America (and Australia!).  As long as two consenting adults want to marry one another, I think they should be allowed to do so and their union recognized.

You do not have to agree with their choice to marry.  I bet there are a lot of people out there who have married and shouldn't have (coming from someone who is *cough* twice divorced *cough*).

I get very annoyed when such a topic turns into a liberal vs. conservative; Democrat vs. Republican debate.  For me, this has nothing, absolutely nothing, to do with who I voted for in previous elections.  You don't have to agree with everything that a party says and does.  You don't have to disagree with everything the party you voted against says and does.  Think for yourself.  That's one of the beauties of being an American.

Many arguments point out biblical passages that have been interpreted to be against homosexuality.  You know what, there are passages against many other activities as well, yet they are still legal.  I do not think the American government bodies should solely base decisions of law on what the Bible says.  If you support separation of Church and State, then you should agree (even if you are a Christian and believe in the Bible).  I know it's a slippery slope, but I am a believer that we are allowed our own choice, and we have our own personal relationships with God (or whatever deity you believe in or don't believe in).  And, the Bible has been interpreted and translated thousands of times over.  I can believe that Jesus died for my sins, and I can support marriage equality.  I don't believe they are mutually exclusive.

I have close personal relationships with people who happen to be homosexuals.  A close family member is gay and has experienced being taken to a doctor to "fix" her; she has battled emotional shame, guilt, and feeling like she doesn't belong for most of her life.  I have a gay friend who attempted suicide not long after he came out.  At my wedding, (the third one; the one that will last!), I got married at the Registry Office (think Justice of the Peace in the USA).  My legal witness, my closest friend in Sydney, is in a committed, exclusive relationship with another woman.  She stood by me to legally represent my love for my spouse and our union in marriage...yet, she is not offered this option in her own life.

These are just snapshots of people in my life...I'm betting most others have relationships and friendships with others who have similar experiences.  These significant people in my life deserve to have equal opportunities.

I shared these photos on other forms of social media.  They are two couples in my world that I personally know who married in places where they were legally allowed to do so.  Now, their marriages are recognized in the U.S., and I share in their joy that is so.

Australia, now it's your turn......

Sunday, June 28, 2015

Sunday's Seven Snapshots vol.27

That's right. I was the girl on a train reading The Girl on the Train. I crack myself up. 

I caught somebody playing with his birdie toy. 

Speaking of birdies, this one was hanging out at a fountain in North Sydney. 

I went for a walk and saw this wall of flowers on a neighbor's fence. I want a wall of flowers at my house. 

Music, sun, cool grass ... Times like these are good times indeed. 

My attempt at an artsy photo of a dandelion before sunset. 

Exploring with these guys was a great way to end my week. 

Hope you're having a wonderful weekend!

Friday, June 26, 2015

Friday Favorites Someecard Edition

I was cruising through my pinterest boards and realized how much these someecards can make me giggle.  I thought I'd share some all-time faves of mine with you.  Some of these have made the rounds, but I still enjoy them.  Hopefully, you'll have a giggle too.  Who doesn't want to have a giggle on a Friday?

Linking up with Amanda for Friday Favorites!


Wednesday, June 24, 2015

The ABCs of Me

I saw this on a friend of mine's facebook feed.  I thought it would be a fun way to share more about myself on the blog.  Feel free to grab and join the fun.

A- Age: 42 (blech!).
B- Biggest fear: spiders bites
C- Current Time: 10:59 a.m.
D- Drink you last had: orange V
E- Easiest Person To Talk to: my guy, Katy, Shawna, Cass
F- Favorite song: such a loaded question that is nearly impossible for me to answer; but my anthem is "It's My Life" by Bon Jovi

G- Grossest Memory: I will spare you the details; it involves loose bowels.
H- Hometown: born in Baytown, Texas; moved to San Antonio, finished junior high and high school in a Houston suburb, so I say Houston, Texas.
I- In love with : my guy

J- Jealous Of: those who have unlimited funds and time
K- Killed Someone: Is a spider considered a someone?
L- Longest Relationship: ten years; on & off
M- Middle Name: Elizabeth
N- Number of Siblings: one biological brother, one step-sister, two step-brothers, two sisters-in-law, one brother-in-law
O- One Wish: Winning the lottery! DUH!  (This was my friend's answer; no need to change it.)
P- Person who you last called: a customer
Q- Question you're always asked: "What part of North America are you from?"
R- Reason to live: my guy, his kids, my family, my fur babies, books, wine, hot baths, live music, hugs
S- Song you last sang: "Let Love In" by the Goo Goo Dolls
T- Time you woke up: Alarm starts at 5:00a.m., I got up at 5:38a.m.
U- Underwear Color: leopard print (rawr!)
V- Vacation Destination: My "vacation" is Texas when I travel now; I hope to squeeze in some weekend getaway here in Australia with my guy.
W- Worst Habit: not committing to good eating habits and exercise program
X- Xrays you've had : I've had broken bones in my arm, my ankle, and my hand...so I know all of those had x-rays; recently, I had a chest x-ray for my visa physical to make sure I'm not bringing TB into the country.
Y- Your favorite food: TexMex; chips & queso, tacos, nachos, fajitas
Z- Zodiac Sign: Gemini


Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Unique Engagement Rings

I've mentioned my day job here before (and given shameless plugs).  My guy's business is a family owned and operated jeweller...and you can find us here on this very pretty website that yours truly designed and manages:  www.polajewellers.com

I enjoy selling pretty, sparkly things.  I enjoy selling for (most often) happy occasions like engagements, birthdays, anniversaries, or times that some people just wants to spoil themselves.  As most jewellers experience, the engagement ring is an important piece of jewellery that many customers cherish (hopefully, for a lifetime).  

Recently, I shared this for our customers...and I thought I'd share it here.  Even if you aren't in the market for an engagement ring (I think many who actually read this blog space of mine aren't), still...you can just look at the pretty pictures.
The three rings pictured here, my guy made.  Ain't he a talent?
C'mon.  If a sapphire is good enough for a princess, it's good enough for anyone, right?!?!  I love the ladies who want a sapphire engagement ring.
Don't let that $100,000 figure scare you.  Sapphires, most often, are more cost effective than white diamonds.  You can get more bang for your buck.
Mark Zuckerberg could pretty much afford to buy his wife any type of ring she wanted.  I adore the fact that she chose a ruby & diamond ring instead of some "Kimye" monstrosity.

It is my understanding that you can see this magnificent Van Cleef & Arpels piece of art at the JFK Presidential Library in Boston.

When it comes to an engagement ring, the advice I always give is this: get what makes you and your partner happy.  Do not buy according to what is going to impress your friends or what your mother thinks you should have.  So, if that means getting a Tiffany & Co. solitaire because the marketing geniuses at T&C have presented that as the perfect ring, and that truly makes your heart flutter and you gasp for air when you see it...then, do it.  If you want a replica of Princess Diana/Duchess of Cambridge's ring because that will make you feel like a princess too.  Then, do it.  If you want a single gold band.  Do it.  I'm serious.  I know I can be sarcastic, but I'm serious about this.  Do not break your banks.  Do not fall to tradition (if you don't want to).  Do not give in to trends (if you want to be traditional).  Get a ring that when you look at it 5 years, 10 years, 20 years from now, your heart will still flutter, and you will still remember the commitment and symbolism of love that you share with your significant other. 

Do any of these make your eyes light up?  If you had to pick your ring all over again, would you choose the same?  Do you have a unique engagement ring?

Monday, June 22, 2015

Literary Ladies Book Challenge

Book "clubs" aren't really my thang...but book challenges...that's a whole different story.  I'm a little bit of a book challenge junkie.  Currently, I'm in four (including hosting Book Challenge by Erin) and this one I'm about to tell you about...that makes five!

When Kristen announced she was joining Kari & Krystal for the literary ladies book club AND there's a challenge, well, I couldn't pass it up.


Here's the categories and my list:

2. Non US Author - The Rosie Effect by Graeme Simsion - I've been on my library's wait list ever since this book was released.  My time is getting nearer.  I'm ready to read this Australian author's follow-up to The Rosie Project.

3. A book that was recommended by a blogger (or instagrammer / you-tuber / goodreads-er) - Shotgun Lovesongs by Nickolas Butler - When Steph was interviewed in Jana's Interview with a Bookworm series, she recommended this one.

4. A book that has been on your TBR list for a year or more - The Monster of Florence by Douglas Preston and Maria Spezi

5. A book with a kickass female character - Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen - I promised Kristen I'd read this, and I haven't yet.  Since she's a co-host, I figured now's a good time for it.

6. A book that is or will be a movie (or TV show) - This is Where I Leave You by Jonathan Tropper

7. A book written by a comedian or celebrity – or even a memoir if neither of those are your jam. - Dancing with Myself by Billy Idol

8. A book with a one word title. - Middlesex by Jeffrey Eugenides

9. A suspenseful book – a mystery, a thriller, a book about revenge! - The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins (because it is finally my turn in the library wait list to pick up this book!)

10. A book about Summer, with Summer in the title, or in any way related to Summer because this is a Summer challenge! - Summertime by Vanessa Lafaye  - (apparently, this has also been released as Under a Dark Summer Sky depending on what part of the world you live in.) - Speaking of what part of the world you live in, where I live, this is a winter challenge...hence, my choice for YA books.  See what I did there.  ;)

If you don't like all my book posts, carry on.  If you do, what do you think about book challenges?

Sunday, June 21, 2015

Sunday's Seven Snapshots vol.26

The week that was my "bird" day... My guy thinks he's so clever. 

This is how I spent the night of my actual birthday.  Kitty love. 

I was pretty happy with the birthday bauble and pretty impressed that it matches my scarf. 

First priority of unpacking and organizing...my books! (Of course)

I'm a woman who likes her make-up. I was trying to get a picture of the day I thought it looked good. The pictures didn't look good though. You couldn't really tell the skill and colors that I was trying to show-off. Photo fail. 

We ordered pepperoni; they sent chicken; I do not like chicken on pizza. That's what I get for being lazy and ordering pizza for dinner.  Pizza fail.

Sunday morning ... Think flea market ... There was indeed a lot of junk ... More trash than treasure ... But some good fruit & veggies straight from gardens.

Hope y'all have a fantastic end to your weekend. Give your dads a hug from me!