Welcome to the Misadventures of Widowhood blog!

In January of 2012 my soul mate of 42 years passed away after nearly 12 years of living with severe disabilities due to a stroke. I survived the first year after Don’s death doing what most widows do---trying to make sense of my world turned upside down. The pain and heartache of loss, my dark humor, my sweetest memories and, yes, even my pity parties are well documented in this blog.

Now that I’m a "seasoned widow" the focus of my writing has changed. I’m still a widow looking through that lens but I’m also a woman searching for contentment, friends and a voice in my restless world. Some people say I have a quirky sense of humor that shows up from time to time in this blog. Others say I make some keen observations about life and growing older. I say I just write about whatever passes through my days---the good, bad and the ugly. Comments welcome and encouraged. Let's get a dialogue going! Jean

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

100 Things About Me

As part of flashback Wednesday during the month of November, I'm going to reprint a blog that I wrote about 6-7 years ago in hopes that it will inspire some of my friends in cyberspace to make and post their own '100 Things About Me' list. Anything printed in the color red, was just added for this addition of my list. So here it goes....

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  1. My hair is naturally curly.
  2. In my entire life, I’ve only lived a couple of months without a dog in the house. And when I was away at college.
  3. ‘Hate’ is not a strong enough word for the way I feel about the color orange.
  4. I practically live in sweats and jogging clothes. Not so much now that I have a social life.
  5. I’ve never gone jogging.
  6. My favorite male movie stars are: Brad Pitt, Toby McGuire, Robert Redford and Tom Cruise.
  7. If I could have three wishes come true, one would be to have my dad back again.
  8. I detest watching sports on TV or at sports events.
  9. I love movies about sports and sports figures---Babe Ruth, Tin Cup, etc.
  10. I still have many of my childhood toys.
  11. If there was a support group for pack rats, I could be their keynote speaker. Not so much anymore since I moved twice since this was originally written.
  12. My favorite hot house flowers are gardenias and roses.
  13. I’ve never had a baby.
  14. I like dark semi-sweet chocolate much better than milk chocolate.
  15. Currently, my favorite flowers grown outside are sweet peas and sunflowers.
  16. I totally don’t understand why people get face lifts.
  17. I’m left handed.
  18. I’ve only changed a tire on a car three times in my life.
  19. I’m fascinated with bungee cords. I used to say, “Bungee cords are my life” to my (late) husband all the time, but I have no idea what that means.
  20. I over-eat when I’m stressed.
  21. I used to have a lot of contact with published authors.
  22. One of the authors named a fictional character in my honor; another mentioned me in a dedication.
  23. I’m dyslexia.
  24. I detest the smell, sight, taste and texture of liver.
  25. I’ve had pen pals in my life since I was a teenager.
  26. I’ve lived alone for more years of my life than I lived with other people.
  27. It’s a rare day that I enjoy driving.
  28. My favorite flavor of ice cream is mint chocolate.
  29. For 18 years, I did commercial snow plowing in the winters.
  30. My favorite public personality is Oprah although I'm not sure I have a favorite anymore and if I did I'd probably name John Daily or Steven Colbert.
  31. Phil Donahue used to be my favorite personality before Oprah.
  32. I don’t have a favorite, FAVORITE song---just lots of them I love a lot.
  33. I rarely wear jewelry, not even my wedding rings.
  34. Silver is my favorite of the precious metals.
  35. I collect Cracker Jack plastic toys.
  36. I like to knit and sew, but I don’t do it much anymore.Since Don died, I've taken up knitting again.
  37. I have more collections/hobbies than I could name on my fingers. Not true anymore, I've downsized but I still have a lot.
  38. I follow the rules of life.
  39. If I could have three wishes granted, one of them would be to a famous artist.
  40. My eyes are brown.
  41. I love the oil paintings of John Singer Sargent.
  42. I made all my own clothes in my teens and well into my twenties.
  43. Traveling overseas has never, ever held any appeal to me.
  44. If they could bring Paris over here, I’d be the first one in line to see it.
  45. My computer desk is really messy and unorganized.
  46. I ‘m a very well adjusted person. Crazy people probably say that too.
  47. I’d rather write a letter than make a phone call.
  48. For over a decade I edited and published a 24 page bimonthly readers' forum where I also wrote book reviews of romance novels.
  49. I love Friends, Frasier and Seinfeld reruns but now I mostly watch CNN and the FoodNetwork.
  50. I finished college exactly 25 years after I started. My degree is in fine arts.
  51. My favorite fruits are peaches, strawberries, and bananas.
  52. I do many things well but few, if any, things really great.
  53. I detest fake fingernails on other women. (I just don't get that!)
  54. On my desk is a Ziggy cartoon that says, “Your past failures will always overtake you if you STOP chasing after your future success!” Wow, I wish I still had that cartoon! I wonder what happened to it.
  55. I’m a sweetaholic. Somethings never change.
  56. I still have contact with my best friend through grade school and high school---she lives far away now.
  57. Sleeping on jersey knit sheets is my preference over other fabric choices in sheets.
  58. I’m pro-choice.
  59. I like the color gray for neutrals in a house and for exteriors. If I redecorate, I'm going for beach, seashells and sky colors. Light and airy.
  60. When I was a kid, I wouldn’t eat orange vegetables and often had to sit at the dinner table for hours until either me or my mom would break.
  61. I was over forty before I would eat squash willingly and now I love it.
  62. I can’t spell very well without my electronic dictionary.
  63. I could happily live in bathrobes all day long if ‘custom’ would let me.
  64. My older brother is my only sibling.
  65. I was a bridal consultant in the floral industry for twenty years.
  66. For ten of those years I had my own business.
  67. For several summers I worked part time filling pot holes in parking lots.
  68. I don’t like tattoos on women. Add men to that list. I'm really sick of seeing tattoos. Too much bad and boring art.
  69. My husband and I used to have booths in three antique malls. We both always had more than one job/business going at one time.
  70. I like milk.
  71. If I could have three wishes come true, one would be to have new knees without going through the pain of surgery. I can cross this off the list. I got new knees and the pain was well worth the results. So to replace this wish I'd like my husband back even for one day with him being able to talk again, to say all the things that went unsaid for the last 12 years of his life.
  72. I was a ‘take-classes’ junkie for most of my life.
  73. A portrait of one of my ancestor’s is hanging in a national art museum and although thirteen generations separates her from my mom, they looked like sisters. 
  74. My husband knows all my secrets and dreams. Knew all my secrets and dreams. Now, no one does and that's one of the saddest parts of widowhood for me. To have someone know everything about you---the good, bad and the ugly---and they still like/love you is a gift. If you have it, treasure it!
  75. I love anything that smells like peaches---hand creams, shampoos, soaps, etc.
  76. I’m a democrat and a liberal.
  77. I’ve only had one beer in my entire life. But this past year I've learned to love hard cider from micro brewers when going to a nice restaurant.
  78. I could eat or drink anything if it had crème de’ mint in it or over it.
  79. My belly button is an ‘inny.’
  80. I’ve made wedding flowers for literally thousands of weddings, but I didn’t have any at my own.
  81. I’ve own one of my house plants for 46 years. I still have it and it was over 50 years old when it had its first flowers. They smell so bad I have to cut them off and it blooms twice a year now.
  82. Vanilla bean frappuccionos and caramel macchiatos are my favorite drinks at Starbucks.
  83. I’ve only moved twice in my life and both times were within the last seven years. I bought the house I grew up in and my parents moved out.
  84. Growing up, red was my favorite color to wear.
  85. Now, purple is my favorite color to wear.
  86. I have a lot of allergies and have had chronic hives many times in my life.
  87. I would hate going back to a world without microwave ovens.
  88. I admire and appreciate good cooks, but I have no interest in being one. I have more interest now but I still don't do much 'real' cooking. I'm not gifted in that department.
  89. I once slept overnight on a cemetery plot.
  90. My tastes in music cover a wide range from Big Band era stuff to World Beat. I listen to a lot of country western now.
  91. On one side of my family my ancestors go back to the Mayflower.
  92. On the other side of my family, my ancestors were part of the great Ellis Island immigration era.
  93. I’m half English descent and half Italian descent. Duh, I think cheated on this one, given numbers 91 and 92.
  94. I’m glad I flew when I was young because I’d be scared to do it today.
  95. I’ve never bleached or dyed my hair or had a permanent. I did low-lights for a year after my husband died, but I went back to the gray. Who knows, maybe next year I'll get fake fingernails or a tattoo. :)
  96. Before my husband’s stroke I was in a library once or twice a week, now I’m lucky to get there once every six months.
  97. I carry two credit cards in my wallet but I rarely used them. Down to carrying one now.
  98. I hate reptiles.
  99. The best gift I ever got was at thirteen when my dad told my mom I didn’t have to eat orange vegetables or liver anymore.
  100. It took me two days to come up with this list…making one is harder than it looks!


  1. I could try, but I might only get to twenty. Good list--I enjoyed getting to know you better. I have not or ever will eat squash!! I love liver!!

  2. Judy, it doesn't even get hard until you get around fifty. And I could name more than 20 things about you starting with you have a great smile, you're not afraid to tackle house maintenance projects, you love your cats, you're a widow, a mother, grandmother and so much more.

  3. I can't believe you accomplished this. I'm not sure I could. I made notes as I read and wanted to comment on a dozen or more of your revelations, but that could go on forever. That's interesting about your mother's resemblance to her distant relative. Genetics can be a crazy thing. My granddaughter is the spitting image of her mother, but looks so much like me at a certain age you wouldn't be able to tell the difference. Yet her mother and I look completely different. Strange.

    And #74 resonates with me. I have it and I treasure it.

  4. Bella, anyone can do a list like this. The hardest part is deciding how much you want to reveal about yourself. It's a neat exercise to try.

    Interesting about your granddaughter!

  5. Getting to know you, getting to learn all about you! I did a list of 25 things on Facebook a few years ago. Maybe I will revisit that! Thanks for sharing this.

  6. AK: I love that song! Brings back some good memories. I hope you do a list. When they were going around the blog community years ago, it was a great way to see common threads in each others' lives.

  7. So many of your entries were a hoot! Like sleeping one night in a cemetery, and collecting Cracker jacks toys. You are so interesting. Could you write another 100?

    I'm going to take you up on this challenge and publish my 100 in my blog. It could takes a few days...Hmmm, a list of 100 is a great idea for a dating profile...

  8. I look forward to seeing your list. What a hoot that it could become a dating profile. That never would have occurred to me. :)

  9. I have bad news for you. Bananas are berries not fruit. Oddly, strawberries aren't berries.

    1. Here all these years I've been mistaken!

  10. I last updated this list today, 7/6/2014