Category Archives: Rants


“Doesn’t Anybody Stay In One Place Any More?”…..

“So Far Away” -`Carole King



With Thanksgiving just last week and Christmas fast approaching, I started thinking about all of the holiday celebrations of years gone by and people that are no longer here to celebrate. Some of these people have passed away but many have moved to a different part of the country. It made me think about this…Why “don’t” people stay in one place any more?

When I was growing up my whole family lived in the same city. No one ever moved and they stayed in the same house forever. My parents lived in the house they built before I was born and never once moved. I don’t remember any of my aunts and uncles or grandparents moving either. There was one uncle who did and I was very upset when they moved since they lived right down the street from us and moved to another end of the city altogether. It wasn’t that far away really, but it was like they were living across the country to me since I was five at the time they moved and sad I couldn’t see them everyday.

We got together for birthdays, Thanksgiving, Christmas and many other times though out the year and we all celebrated together as a family. Aunts, uncles, great aunts great uncles,  and cousins, everyone would be there. And we went to my grandparents every Sunday night for dinner, most of the family would be there as well. I don’t think I appreciated this as a young girl but looking back on it now, it was wonderful to have those times together. I did look forward to seeing my cousins especially at Christmas. We would all hang out in the kitchen and look out the window for Santa and his sleigh to fly by. The older kids would tell stories of how he flew right over Grandma’s house and how they saw him once, so of course we younger kids were glued to the window looking for this to happen again.

I remember these times and how much fun we all had together. But not just the fun times, it was also the way the family pulled together if there was someone in need or if someone was ill too. Someone would come over to help out, make dinner or just sit and chat. Everyone was there for you as a kid, too. We didn’t have babysitters, my Aunt or older cousin would watch us if my parents went out of town. That didn’t really happen very often because if they went on vacation or out of town, we went with them. The family unit was a strong one and you knew someone was always around and would speak up or help out if you needed them. Because they were nearby and we saw them on a least a weekly basis you felt like you always had someone there to help if you needed it, but God help us if we misbehaved, they were also there to let you know when you did wrong.

Yes, it was a wonderful back in those days. We saw these people all the time. And then something happened. Everything changed, people didn’t get together as much. Each family had their own family and were busy with their lives and jobs. Some of the family moved out of the area. We went from seeing people all the time to maybe once a year and then most of the time it was at a funeral.

When did this all change? When did people start moving away from the close knit family unit? Did it change when more people started going to college and they stayed in or near the city where they went to college? Did jobs dry up and they needed to go to more urban cities with higher paying jobs? I know of many people who moved away due to health issues and needing to be in warmer dryer climates.

I know people my age who say they don’t see their children or grandchildren but maybe once a year if they are lucky. I am blessed that 2 of my children and 2 of my grandchildren live nearby. And the other child and her 3 boys live out of the area, but we all really make an effort to see each other several times a year and talk on the phone and FaceTime weekly. It makes it seem like they are not “so far away.”

Why doesn’t anybody stay in one place any more?

“Long ago I reached for you and there you stood. Holding you again could only do me good. Oh how I wish I could. But you’re so far away.”



What Are You Wearing??

Why don’t people dress up anymore?



This is my family, my Dad, Mom, my sister Rhonda and me all dressed up visiting my Aunt and Uncle at Christmas. It wasn’t Christmas Eve or Christmas Day but we were still dressed up because that is what we did “back in my day.” People don’t dress for anything anymore, not even church or weddings. It makes me kind of sad to see the way some people dress to go to the mall. I know people who won’t agree with this but I think if people would dress up more there would be less problems in this world. I’m no stupid, I know this is an over simplification. It wouldn’t make the world safer or stop wars or anything, but If kids had to dress like we did in school back in the 1960’s maybe it would make them more respectful. Maybe everyone would respect each other more if they respected themselves and how they looked.

The other day I saw something at the mall that got me to thinking about how we dress and what we wear. An older woman in her late 70’s had on a pair of the ripped, torn jeans, My first thought was, wow, she is too old to be wearing them. Then I stopped and thought about it a little and said to myself…”you go girl.” I have a pair myself, granted mine aren’t as ripped and torn as hers were. She had a cute sweater on and her hair was quite stylish. I had to admit she did look nice. At least she didn’t have on pajama pants like some of the people who were also shopping that day.

We should all wear things that make us feel good and if wearing those jeans made that little 70 something feel good than more power to her. It makes me feel good to dress up and go to meet friends for lunch or dinner. I don’t get the opportunity to dress up as much now since I don’t go to work every day. But when I do get dressed up it makes me feel great. Putting together a fun outfit, with just the right jewelry….Silpada of course ( maybe a scarf and then top it off by having someone remark on how much they liked it sure makes my day a whole lot better.

All of this made me think why do we only dress up to go somewhere or to do something. And why don’t some people dress up to even do that? I have a lot of clothes…a lot! And the fact is, if I only wear my nice things to go out to lunch, dinner, shopping with friends or the occasional event I go to, most of my clothes will never get worn. So I am doing something out of my norm and changing things up a bit as I have spoke about in a previous post. And I have mentioned this quote before too because it is one of my favorites, but thought it said what I wanted to accomplish here…”Get Up, Dress Up, Show Up and Never Give Up,” – Regina Brett

Most of the time if I don’t have anywhere to go I just have on a tee shirt, fleece jacket and leggings or sweats. Oh and my slippers…That is fine but really there is something to be said for dressing up a bit, a nice sweater, jeans, putting on some light makeup(maybe a little mascara and lipstick),jewelry and shoes, comfy shoes but shoes. You would be amazed, it really can change your whole attitude.

I have been doing this for a few days now. Wearing things that I have had in my closet but that seldom get worn. I am not wearing my best clothing or dressing up like I am going to an event. But I feel better. I sure look better. And if I don’t wear all of these things than who will? Maybe this will be the start of something.. I would love to see people care about the way they dress again and maybe they can also stop wearing yoga pants everywhere. If you do could you please turn around and look at a view of yourself from the back before you go out the door.

What has happened to us? Why don’t we care how we look anymore? I think about my Grandmother and how she wore a dress everyday her entire life until the day she died. We don’t need to go that far but having a little respect for ourselves and the people who have to look at us certainly has to be of some value. It can’t hurt.

Do you dress up? Do you dress up only if you are going somewhere and even then do you really dress up or just get dressed?

My outfit today….






And yes I am yelling….

a little louder please...

a little louder please…

This isn’t something I like talking about, but I feel the need to speak for all of us who have any kind of hearing problem. I am almost totally deaf in one ear and about 80% in the other. I wear a hearing aid but most likely will be needing to have one in both ears in the very near future.

The reason for my talking about it today is I want to raise awareness and hopefully by doing so, maybe make people have a little compassion for the hearing impaired. I struggle on a daily basis to understand people in any number of situations. I can’t always hear servers in restaurants or clerks in the stores. People have a tendency to talk fast and or mumble which makes hearing them even harder. If I am going to be in a situation where I know it is going to be hard to hear the person and it is important for me to do so(like at my recent eye exam), I will stop them before they even start talking and tell them I wear a hearing aid and would they speak slowly and clearly.

I have to constantly ask people to repeat what they said, sometimes 3 times(that is my limit). Very often, what happens is I still am not getting it and just nod or answer to what I’ve thought they said. Then they stand there staring at me with a blank look in their eyes because I’m clearly not answering the question correctly. Sometimes I just walk away.

Not being able to hear is hard. It isn’t something someone can tell about you when they see you. Even when you are with family and friends that do know, they tend to forget and talk in a normal tone of voice so I can’t always join in the conversation. Even when I do, people think it’s funny when I mistake what they’ve said, when “Do you want some brie”, becomes “Do you have to pee”. I agree that is funny and I laugh along with them. But sometimes its not funny. Sometimes it just hurts. It is hurtful to make fun of someone with a hearing impairment, just like making fun of any other impairment.

I don’t like having this affliction. I don’t like sitting on the sidelines and not joining in the fun at family gatherings and dinners with friends. And I am happy for everyone with perfect hearing. I envy you. Enjoy it, you don’t know what a wonderful thing it is until you don’t have it. All I’m asking is the next time you are talking to someone and they ask you to repeat something for the third time, just do it and don’t complain about it or make fun of them. We hate it as much as you do!

So please people, speak up and speak clearly!


Who Am I??

Its happened, I have truly turned into my parents…

Stop it now...

Stop it now…


I don’t know when or how this happened, but it happened. I find myself saying and doing things they did all the time now. Daily, hourly, every few minutes… I just can’t stop it. I want to but I can’t. I have turned into my parents!!

How this is affecting my life and the lives of those who love me (at least they did, maybe not so much anymore) has not been determined yet. But it is affecting them and me. I promise myself to try harder to stop being my parents. But can I?

My my youngest daughter and grandkids are visiting from Vermont this week and I find myself acting like my Dad constantly. Saying things like “turn out that light, stop running in and out the front door, calm down, shut the refrigerator door, do you have to be so loud, you’ll poke your eye out”…and on and on. The words just come out of my mouth and the moment I say them I hear him and want to stop but I can’t.

I wasn’t always like this, I was a fairly normal person for the most part and allowed the kids to be kids, but I have sadly turned into Dad and I can’t go back. Mom wasn’t as bad as Dad. My Father was the one who had no patience at all with kids. That is until I had kids, he was pretty good with them and actually talked to them, I don’t remember ever having a conversation with him unless he was telling me NOT to do something or to lower my voice. I couldn’t do anything right. I tried to be different with my kids, I left them be kids. I wasn’t like this when they were little..or at least I don’t think I was.

Dad did however have his limits, even with my kids. I remember both of my daughters telling me of one particular night they slept over at my parents house, they had been to the mall and each of them got a balloon. They were being kids and playing with the balloons and had named them “Buster”(they got them at the Buster Brown Shoe Store). Of course they were giggling and running around the house with them until Dad just couldn’t take it any longer,  he got up from the sofa went over and ripped the much loved Buster from their tiny little hands and threw them out. I always thought this was such a horrible story. That is until recently. I could so see myself doing this…and maybe even have done something similar.

So I ask, is this normal? Or is something wrong with me? Or could it be due to the fact I have been through so much lately that I have absolutely no patience for anything that is out of my ordinary daily routine? I have had so much chaos, craziness and loss in my life that now I seek peace, calm and a semblance of order. I am not making excuses, I am just saying this is the way it is.

And by the way, this isn’t just happening with my grandkids, I am even doing it with my oldest kid who has moved in with me. I find myself on a daily basis telling her to turn off the light or shut the refrigerator door. She just looks at me and I know what she is thinking. I also yelled at my youngest daughter the other night for jumping around in bed. I thought she was going to have a heart attack. Of course I feel bad after I do these things, but for some reason I just can’t stop myself.

Again I pose this question to you, is this normal? Do you find yourself having less patience as you turn older? Do you find yourself saying and doing more things like your parents? Please tell me I am not alone or crazy!

Are we destined to turn into our parents?




“Oh No, Not You Too”…..

Can we get a button on Facebook to “not” see certain things….


The button I am talking about and what I would so like to have is one to not see my “friends” posts on political issues. I have made many new friends over the years I have been on Facebook and I really love the interaction. I am all for people having their own opinion and being able to express it. The problem I have is when a person I really have come to admire and think we are “like minded” posts something hateful or very biased and one sided about a political figure or topic. It just makes me say to myself (and sometimes out loud), “oh no, not you too.”

In “real life” I don’t know how most of my friends feel about politics or even what party they belong to. We don’t discuss politics. My Dad always said if you want to keep a friend you don’t discuss politics or religion. So I don’t have these discussions with friends or family members with the exception of my 3 kids. We all know where we stand and respect each others opinions. I do know the brands of clothing, purses and shoes my friends like but not their favorite politician.

Just this week a person I had respected and have had conversations on various topics posted something that made me say…”oh no, not you too.” It is very  disheartening to see the hurtful and sometimes hateful comment coming from someone you have respected for so long. It changes the way you look at them and changes the way you feel. At least it does for me. It is one thing to post a comment and quite another to be so overly hateful or even abusive.

I never post anything about politics and never engage in conversation about it. It brings out the worst in people and I don’t want to see that or be that person. My question is, do these people act like this in the “real world” or do they only do it when they are behind the safety of their computer screen? I have a few people I am friends with that are or have been politicians and I know where they stand and I respect that. I don’t try to change them or say hurtful things to them. They have their belief and I have mine. We agree to disagree, without saying a word.

This is what I think it all boils down to…people all want us to think the way they do. What happened to everyone having an opinion and talking about it rationally and with out judgement or hate? I don’t see the need to trash someone, be it a political figure or anyone else for that matter. Why can’t we just have a conversation? Does the internet give you some kind of super power to say things you would never say if you were at dinner with friends?

We still have the right to free speech in our great country. I am grateful we have it and think we should speak our mind… It just doesn’t have to be hurtful, hateful or abusive. Believe me it takes all the will power I have sometimes not to say something, but just as in “real life” I don’t. Lesson learned, Dad! And those that know me, know this is hard for me as I have an opinion on everything. To all the people that feel the need to speak out… go ahead have your say, but if it is one of hate or abuse, I really don’t want to see it.

Please give me that “I don’t want to see this” button……





I’m Offended…


Are you offended by this cat? Maybe you like dogs and cat pictures offend you. Maybe you don’t like the cat sticking its tongue out. Whatever the reason, if you are, my advice is this..”get over it.”

Why is everyone so overly offended these days about literally everything? And also why do we rush to change whatever is offending them so they won’t be offended by it ever again. Until the next thing comes up that offends them.Yes, I know I used the word “offend”.. a LOT(and you will continue to see it even more). But there certainly are a lot of things offending people for some reason.

Who are all these people that get so upset over just about anything? When did we create a nation of people that are so self important that their opinion is the only “right” one? And then the offending thing is removed from existence so the people who were not offended can never have it again.. And many times it is one person who it bothers causing millions of others to be left wondering what happened. Where is the freedom in this? Why does one person get to have their way at the expense of others?

But it happens, and more and more all the time. If someone is upset over something, by all means let’s get rid of it all together. I guess I was raised in a different time, a time when if we were upset with something we were told to just deal with it. And we did and we moved on. It didn’t become a national issue and we didn’t have to get rid of said item. It wasn’t forever banished from the face of the earth.

For those wondering, I am not speaking to the recent “items” that are in the news this week. This trend didn’t just start today, it goes back many years. I think my first time dealing with it was while working at a major department store when I was told not to say “Merry Christmas” to the customers because “we may offend someone”. I was literally blown away by this. Who was I going to offend by telling them to have a “merry” whatever?

I myself am offended by a lot of things. I’m offended by having to be so politically correct and being absolutely afraid to say certain things without someone getting upset. I’m offended that we have to put warnings about how “hot” the coffee is on a coffee cup. I’m upset that kids can’t play cowboys anymore. I’m concerned that kids playing at a park down the street may cause their parents to be put in jail. I am upset by things and people but I am not calling for all things to be my way. I have to learn to live with the way things are today. Some people just can’t do that. These people are offended by items, books, religion, different people, logos and even food. One person doesn’t like the box the cereal comes in and we can’t get that cereal anymore.

And on and on it goes..why can’t we just “let it go?” More importantly why can’t we just forgive those who made the mistake in the first place. And really, if we want to be offended by something, let’s make it something important. Let’s be offended by hunger, poverty and homelessness. And better yet, let’s do something about it. Things that offend us go away very quickly these days so maybe if we are offended by the right things, something will get accomplished to rid us of these horrible things. A little love, compassion and forgiveness can go a long way towards a possible solution to the problems we face today. It is certainly better than the alternative and most definitely better than being offended by everything we see.

Hey, hope I didn’t offend you….


Excuse Me….

Are manners obsolete?



When was the last time someone held the door for you? I don’t care if you are a woman or a man, if you are walking out and someone is behind you, it is common courtesy to hold the door for that person. I am actually shocked now when someone does it and it has become the rare occasion and is no longer the norm. Has anyone said thank you to you, with the exception of the cashier at the grocery store and they get paid to do it and even then sometimes don’t. What about, “excuse me” if they bumped into you by mistake? When was the last time a stranger smiled at you, if they happened to look up from their phone or the sidewalk as they walk along in their many journeys.

I am very upset about all of this and feel people in general have gotten increasingly rude over the last few years. Granted, working retail has not helped with my view of the situation. And I feel we have created this “monster” customer due to the stores giving in to all their demands. If they don’t like something or feel they have been treated unfairly they call and complain and the stores give them free merchandise or money back. People know this and take advantage of it. If you look at someone the wrong way they report it to management. The consumer is all about getting something for nothing. I’m all for getting the best deal and looking out for myself as anyone that knows me knows this, but there is a line. And I think we have crossed it.

It is always the same scenario every time I go shopping lately…I am happily looking at racks of tops or shelves full of beautiful shoes and out of the blue someone wants to see the exact top or shoe I am looking at. Ok, thats fine, I will just go to another aisle and look at handbags. No one is in this aisle. I start looking and immediately 4 other people come up and stand around me wanting to look at the exact same bag I am looking at. I must have great taste. Well I do, but that’s another story.. This happens every single time I go shopping, doesn’t mater where, what city or what store.

I am used to this by now and used to the fact that no one says excuse me or sorry if I have to move out of “their” way. But my recent “bad” shopping experience tops all the others I have ever had and that’s saying a lot. I was in a store last weekend and happily looking at some soaps and items on a shelf, when all of a sudden I was surrounded by 3 women of various ages. I think maybe a mother and 2 daughters. I continued to look, I thought maybe if I ignored them they would go away. But that didn’t happen..This did..One of the women reached over top of my head and actually bumped me on the head to pick up something from the shelf. I couldn’t believe this even happened, not to mention no one said I’m sorry or excuse me or anything at all. I picked up my item and slammed my cart into theirs and said loudly, “I’m sorry, I’m evidently in “your” way. I’ll go!” I couldn’t help myself, it just came out. I was “mad as hell and not going to take it anymore”. To my amazement, they all looked shocked and one of them said sweetly and with an honest, sincere look on her face, “Oh, you’re not in our way.” Really..

I mentioned this to my friends later that evening and asked them, ‘is it just me or are people getting ruder?”(not sure if this is a word, but it should be) Every single one of them agreed..and loudly agreed, even the ones I didn’t expect to since they are always so nice and not like me who lets this kind of thing bother me. One of the girls even shared a story that had recently happened to her while shopping.. She had been carrying a top around because she didn’t get a cart and a woman came up to her and said, “are you going to get that?” Of course she was, even if she didn’t want it, she was now…

So often I have had these encounters and when called out, people seemingly are oblivious about the fact they are doing these things. They truly look shocked and some do say, “oh, sorry”. It is as if everyone is in their own little world and that world is all that matters. You have to shock them back into reality and only then do they see what they are doing. I can’t be the only person to notice this and I hope it’s not because I’m getting old and remember a time when people were nice to each other. I also remember when a person smiled back at you if you smiled at them and most of the time, even said hello.

So what is wrong with people? What happened to create this environment? And how do we go about changing this? What stories do you have to share?

And don’t even get me started about angry, crazy drivers, that is for another day.





Very Interesting….

Or not…. our trip to the Gettysburg Battlefield.


My daughter and my 3 grandsons were visiting this week from VT. We decided to take the boys(12,10 and 7, keep these numbers in mind as it may explain some things) to the Gettysburg Battlefield. The oldest was studying the Civil War, and especially Gettysburg. So we decided to take them there, since believe it or not they had never done this while living in MD. You know how sometimes you really don’t get to the places closest to you. We both thought this would be extremely interesting for them. However, that couldn’t have been further from the truth.

On the way there, I was sharing stories of my trips to the Battlefield and all of the knowledge I had picked up over the years. I really love going there and remember the first time I went in the fifth grade. I try to go at least once a year. It never gets old for me. I shared how many lives were lost over the three days the battle lasted and all of the souls I feel still exist there till this day and the fact that I can feel them. They thought that was gross.The oldest grandson shared some stories he had recently learned as well so I’m thinking wow, this will be a great experience for all of us. Imagine my surprise when the boys didn’t share my enthusiasm.

The first clue came as we pulled up to the Peace Light. This is one of my all time favorites and so we decided to start the tour there. I was so excited for them to see it and experience the same feeling I get every time I go there. The excitement building in the pit of my stomach as we pulled in the parking space. I envisioned them all running up to it and asking me how it stays lit like that in this wind. The real scenario was a little different. The two oldest didn’t even want to get out of the car. “Why do we have to get out, we can see it from here”, really..that’s what we got. I made them get out and go up to look at it’s majesty. They reluctantly ran up, looked at it for a full second and ran back to the car. The 7 year old, my daughter and I explored. First fail.

We took the entire tour and at every single monument I had the hopes that maybe they would start to see the “light” or get excited and want to get out and truly “see” one. Even the towers…what boy doesn’t love climbing up to the top of a tower and lean over and scare his Grandmother to death…evidently these boys. Again the 7 year old was out of the car and up the tower before I could open the door. I kept thinking in the back of my mind, wait till we get to Devils Den, they will love this. The view, the chance of falling off the rocks, the thrill of it all. So we finally pull up and once again they don’t want to get out. We made them go and as we start up the path to the top they say, “ok, its freezing, we’re going back to the car”. In all honesty, it was darn cold and very windy and cloudy which didn’t help. But these are the same boys that wear shorts all winter long to school everyday no matter what the temps. My daughter turned to me and laughed and said, “I have the car keys, they won’t be able to get in”. I smiled. We returned to the car to see two shivering boys standing there with a not so fun expression on their little frozen faces.

We made them get out one last time, at the Pennsylvania Memorial. I love this one too, another of my favorites. We told them it was the last one so they could make an effort. We all went up to the top and literally almost blew off. I was freezing but wouldn’t give them the satisfaction of knowing how cold I was.  We saw Lincoln’s statue and read the Gettysburg Address and went back to the car and headed home.

Later that night, I talked to the two older boys separately knowing I was going to write this and just wanted to get their real feelings on the trip. I said, we take them places all the time and we get the same reaction, it is a waste of our time and their time, so why should we bother. I asked both boys why they was so disinterested and wouldn’t get out of the car. To a word, they both told me they did really enjoy it. Each one said this as well…”Grammy, I was just cold.” I know one thing for sure the 7 year old really did. Not sure I’m buying the excuse from the other two, but they sure sounded sincere.

I fear we are raising a generation of kids that have no interest in our past and how as a nation we got to the place where we are today. They would rather stay home and play video games than visit a historic site. This makes me sad. What do you think?





“Why Can’t We All Just Get Along?”

Give Peace a Chance

“Give Peace a Chance”

Let me be the first to say I love social media! I really do! Catching up with friends and family members, and seeing all the pictures of the fun things they are doing. This is great and I think what it is truly all about and one of the main reasons I myself do it. What I don’t like is all the negative stuff that comes with it. There are certain posts I don’t even look at due to the fact I know what the comments will be like. I scroll by those things just like I tell others to do. But what if it happens on your own page, your own posts?

A friend, who by the way is the sweetest person anyone could ever hope to meet, recently had to take down a post on Facebook. She had innocently put something up she thought would be thought provoking and wanted to see what others would think. It got nasty very quickly causing her to take the post down altogether.

What is that? Why do people do this? Is it the fact no one can see them or they have no voice in the real world so they use it more online? I don’t know the answer to this. I guess I am from a different era, one where we respected others opinions whether we agreed with them or not. Why can’t we just have an opinion and not attack others for their’s. I am constantly saddened by this and it always makes me wonder why this has to happen.

I do have a theory about why it happens… I think the news outlets are the biggest contributors of this and it escalates from there. They stir the pot. Back in the day, the news anchors would tell a story, most often with no emotion and no opinion. It amazed me how they could do this. But now we know how they feel and where they stand the moment they put it out there. Also once the story is told, we see it over and over and over again. There is even name given for each story. We see all of those related to it and how they impacted the story. The victim is forgotten, it is all about the one who committed the crime. It glorifies the perpetrator and the negativity.

Don’t even get me started on the political posts and comments… I never read or comment on this and really, I don’t want know how people feel about politics and candidates. Especially the people close to me. I think it is better that way. My Dad always believed you don’t talk about politics or religion.And I think that holds true here. I don’t want to know who they want for president or how they feel about the one we have. We as a nation have never been so biased and divided. What is with all the name calling and lack of respect, not just for the man, but the office? Where did all of this hatred come from? And I am not just talking about the current one. It started way before this.

My point to this is, all this negativity is not good for us, not just as a nation but us as human beings. Negativity impacts our health, it affects your mood which affects your brain and total overall well being. Everyone is so quick to react to any situation that comes up and usually not in a good way. Take a minute to breathe before you react.

So, my personal quest these days is to try and find the good in every situation. I would love to see more good stories on the news and on social media. I try to do this everyday and challenge others to do it as well. Let’s stop all the negativity and truly “give peace a chance”. I challenge everyone to try this, just one small change can have a huge impact.

Kumbaya, my friends, Kumbaya! (for those of you under 50, you may have to look this up..LOL)