This may weigh against conventional consensus but… wait for it… wait for it: I liked my mother-n-law.   It could have been tricky as I married her only son, but then again, HE made sure SHE understood their new reality:   “Why don’t you visit anymore?” (Not true btw) “Mom, I travel. When […]

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  • - Good on you Cheryl! Love your interpretations of dialogs, LOL and toasting a Manhattan with you ladies:) xx AbbyReplyCancel

    • Cheryl Nicholl - Thanks Abby. I’m tipping one back to you as well. Cheers!ReplyCancel

  • Carollynn - Very creative idea for the Christmas tree ornaments for the soon to be newly weds. Would love to see their tree adorned with your gifts. Like you, I adore my MIL – she is a friend as well as family. At 83 she’s see a lot, and is one of the most adventuresome people I know.ReplyCancel

    • Cheryl Nicholl - They actually sent me a photo. I’ll have to put the pic up. So cute!ReplyCancel

Wherever I travel, my eye automatically lights on the architecture of the place and my heart to watching the people who move within those spaces.      In the city of Puerto Vallarta, Mexico, there is a church that seems to almost glow with the reverence of the faithful that cross it’s marbled floors.   […]

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  • Chloe Jeffreys - I love Puerto Vallarta! But not as much as the conclusions you’ve drawn about the Virgin Mary and tacos. Tacos are good. If you are still there had over to The Happy Lobster and order the special coffee.ReplyCancel

    • Cheryl - Alais, I have returned to NOLA. Not a bad place to land, but next year I’ll swing by The Happy Lobster for a swig!ReplyCancel

  • Karen D. Austin - My husband works at a Catholic school, so it’s good for me to learn more about Catholic saints. Thank you.ReplyCancel

    • Cheryl - I find the stories of Saints fascinating. We have a priest here in New Orleans that is being vetted for sainthood as we speak. I should write about him….. thanks for reminding me!ReplyCancel

  • Toni McCloe - I love the pictures. The Empress was beautiful’ Love her skin. I wonder how they defined crazy then.ReplyCancel

    • Cheryl - Probably just unhappy- maybe a temper, possibly a drink? Whatever it was I’m pretty sure is was wrong. EEeGads. And Thanks for stopping by!ReplyCancel

  • William Kendall - It is a beautiful church.ReplyCancel

    • Cheryl - Yes William- it is. I think all churches are beautiful.ReplyCancel

  • Helene Cohen Bludman - The church is so pretty! So interesting to learn a bit about its history, too.ReplyCancel

    • Cheryl - It really is beautiful. And the faithful there are so reverent. A very humbling experience.ReplyCancel

  • Ruth Curran - I love your take aways and how you weave a tale! Tacos…. Too funny!ReplyCancel

    • Cheryl - Thanks Ruth! And I make a mean taco too! HahaaaReplyCancel

  • Doreen McGettigan - I was driving home tonight through the city of Philadelphia and saw a billboard about the Lady and got home and saw this post.
    Now I feel like I need to know more.
    What a beautiful church, great pictures and yes we Catholics are a crazy bunch and people are flawed.
    Great post!ReplyCancel

    • Cheryl - I’d say once is a coincidence, twice is a ‘sign’. She’s calling you!ReplyCancel

  • Kim Tackett - I love how you wove the story and the images for us. Thank you!ReplyCancel

    • Cheryl - It’s such a beautiful place. Finding a good shot was easy- unlike the people crawling on their knees. That looked hard. Which, I guess, was the point.ReplyCancel

  • Janie Emaus - I loved learning about this. And your photos are amazing.ReplyCancel

    • Cheryl - Such a pretty place. ANyone could take a good photo- and I proved it. Thanks Jamie!ReplyCancel

  • Tam Warner Minton - The iconography is epic, and the belief in the conqueror’s religion is ironic. It does produce beautiful art.ReplyCancel

  • Wendy Walker Cushing - Even though I am not a fan of visiting Mexico I do love to travel and love visitng cathedrals! Your travel story makes me even want to go to Mexico now. Beautiful photos too! Fun!ReplyCancel

  • Diane Tolley - Yay! I’ve been there! Husby and I love churches.
    And I love tacos, too! It’s a good day.ReplyCancel

  • Carol Cassara - I have it on very good authority that the Blessed Mother, herself, makes a mean taco. Just sayin’ReplyCancel

  • Stacia Friedman - Thanks for providing the history behind the history.ReplyCancel

  • Mary La Fornara Gutierrez - I would love to one day see this Cathedral in person, I enjoyed hearing about the history. The pictures are stunning.ReplyCancel

  • Carolann Iadarola - What a stunning church. I’d love to go there someday. Never been to Mexico. The photos were beautiful!ReplyCancel

  • Estelle Sobel Erasmus - How gorgeous. Loved seeing the pictures of the church and Carlota, herself.ReplyCancel

  • Nancy Hill - I live on Lady Lupe’s (we are besties) turf. Tucson was part of Mexico for a long time, and longer still connected to the trade and farming culture from which Juan came. Pink roses will decorate my table on December 9th. Wonderful cultural history. I attended a beautiful double wedding in Ciudad Obregon in a Catholic Church graced by the Virgin of Guadalupe… Goddesses are so cool.ReplyCancel

  • Kimberly Montgomery - The churches of any country are always so interesting and Mexico is no exception. Your photos are gorgeous and I loved reading the back story — royal families never dissapoint!
    Kimberly XOReplyCancel

  • Lois Alter Mark - Ooh, we actually visited this church when we were in Puerto Vallarta. Of course, it’s much more interesting hearing about it from your always fascinating point of view!ReplyCancel

    • Cheryl Nicholl - I just have to try to understand the back story to every place I visit. That’s where the juicy stuff happens!ReplyCancel

        I have, in light of recent global events, discovered a tool for emotional survival: Denial, otherwise affectionally known as Hallmark network programming.     I kid you not.     It began, like all massive fairytales, innocently enough:   Turn on the TV, see 128 children have been murdered in their […]

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  • Janie Emaus - I’m addicted, too! There are only a few plots and you know from the first scene who is going to fall in love, who is going to leave who for the guy pretending to be her boyfriend, who is going to become a princess or is one and didn’t know it. So predictable. But exactly what I need right now. I even excited for a new one which I haven’t seen!ReplyCancel

    • Cheryl - I’m with ya sister. ’tis the season of bullshit.ReplyCancel

  • bonnie aldinger - ha, I don’t have a TV but I bet if I did I would be eating these up too, and considering it my guiltiest secret!


    • Cheryl - You seem like a very nice person ( you are HERE after all) but I need to confess something: we have 9 televisions, so you know where my head is at! HA!ReplyCancel

  • Carolann - You are so right! They are all so predictable. I always get annoyed when I’m watching a show where I know exactly what’s going to happen. Maybe, that’s why we like them so much. We can’t predict our own drama so there must be satisfaction in doing so for others.ReplyCancel

    • Cheryl - That’s it! I know the ending and can always count on it. Very comforting.ReplyCancel

  • Carollynn - We all need a little feel good fantasy in our lives, and a made for Hallmark TV movie is the perfect form of escapism for the world we live in today. Isn’t that what entertainment ultimately is meant to be – a form of escape from our everyday lives? Yes, we need to suspend our disbelief and live in the “it could happen…” world for a just a short time.ReplyCancel

    • Cheryl - I’m so bipolar I’m either watching Hallmark or The Walking Dead. How’s that for a mind spasm?ReplyCancel

  • Lynda@fitnessmomwinecountry - Cheryl, the husband and I got sucked into the Lifetime Movie Network this past week. What? Why? Same concept only with bat shit crazy people. Stalkers, lovers, murder, sex, suspense. Right?
    We checked out of the “world” also LOL, until today, back at it. OR I just put on my Pandora channel Christmas music and leave that on the t.v. all day. Babysitting the merry way 🙂ReplyCancel

    • Cheryl - I forgot to mention the constant Xmas music I play this time of year- in the house, in the courtyard, in the car. And don’t get me started on the Lifetime Network and all of it’s awesome predictable domestic intrigue wrapped in sex with greed at the center among beautiful people movies. Ben and wil binge watch those after the first of the year!ReplyCancel

  • Sheryl - TV watching can certainly be a great escape from the dire news. Unless, of course, you’re watching something like Homeland, which is a case of life imitating art…ReplyCancel

    • Cheryl - I lean towards Downton Abby and drool that I wasn’t born a century earlier. Maybe next life?ReplyCancel

  • Stacia Friedman - I have my own TV addictions. For perverse reasons, I love watching Dateline and 48 Hours, reality TV shows that document how seemingly “nice” spouses murder one another. Perhaps I’ve aged out of the Princess dramas or get vicarious pleasure out of knowing that, as a single woman of a certain age, I am unlikely to be the subject of a Prime Time mystery!ReplyCancel

  • Chloe Jeffreys - You always make me laugh. I love your scathing commentary on all that’s fucked up with the world. And so much is.

    I’ve gotten myself addicted to Quantico. Quantico is full of the most beautiful, buff FBI agents in the history of ever. And I think all of them might be terrorists. Doesn’t the FBI vet these people?? Anyway, if this is any indication of the caliber of people the FBI is recruiting these days we’re all screwed. But still. They are awfully pretty to watch.ReplyCancel

  • Lee Gaitan - True confession–I’m mad about the two months of Christmas movies on both Hallmark channels because I accidentally (by way of post-menopausal insomnia) got addictied to watching reruns of…wait for it…don’t laugh and/or gag…Hart to Hart. After a few weeks of nocturnal viewings, I even started watching it on my iPad during the daytime hours! We all need to escape sometimes and pretend life is easy, fair, glamorous and happy. Now, if I could just become one of those self-made millionaires like Jonathan Hart!ReplyCancel

  • Carol Cassara - I’m with you sister. I taped at least 8 of these the past week and watched one with a girlfriend yesterday and one the day before. Also see the movie Brooklyn. Sweet sweet sweet escape!ReplyCancel

  • Helene Cohen Bludman - You are so funny and so spot on. I hate to admit that my secret indulgence is The Bachelor/ Bachelorette. Whether I’m a romantic or a voyeur or both, I’m not sure, but I’m addicted.ReplyCancel

  • Mari Collier - I find those shows (and books like that) annoying. I know, I know, people really do watch them and they are really popular at Christmas time. Are people regretting they didn’t do that?ReplyCancel

  • Estelle Sobel Erasmus - You are hilarious, and need to be cast pronto in Housewives of New Orleans (I love anything Bravo).ReplyCancel

  • Kimberly Montgomery - And THAT is exactly why I don’t have TV. I’d end up grown into my couch with the remote clutched in my boney fingers, piles of used tissues creating a fire hazard . . .
    Kimberly XOReplyCancel

  • Sue Pekarek - You’re hysterical and this is so, so true Cheryl. How did you know I’ve recently been watching Hallmark again as a survival tool.ReplyCancel

  • Diane Tolley - + Carol Said it: Sweet Escape! We need a little bit of it in today’s world . . .ReplyCancel

  • Tammy Bleck - I belive in fairy tales….sometimes. But I believe in you all the time. Nicely done. And thank you for the giggles!ReplyCancel

    Hello everyone. I hope you had a wonderful Thanksgiving and Merry Christmas! Ready to blow your brains out? Me too!   So, aside from the absolute certainty that stepping out into the cold wind of consumerism within a contained four walls and a food court is a death wish that will only be […]

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  • - Outrageously funny! The best ever take on Black Friday:) xx AbbyReplyCancel

    • Cheryl - Why thank you Ms. Abby. You’re a sweetheart!ReplyCancel

  • Karen D. Austin - All my best to you and other shoppers for surviving the madness of the holiday shopping season. Gah!ReplyCancel

  • Brenda Ray Coffee - Love your comment about the perfume… I’m highly allergic. Shopping’s never been my thing, so I’m lucky I’ve gotten good at online shopping.ReplyCancel

  • Carol Cassara - I have never done a Black Friday– all of my shopping is done year round, usually special things I find when we travel or on sale, so I’m done well before Thanksgiving. Don’t hate me!ReplyCancel

  • Kimberly Montgomery - I hate shopping. Just hate it. I have no idea why anyone would set foot in a store on Black Friday. It sounds like they’re going to gas you with that name. Make no sense to me.
    Kimberly XOReplyCancel

  • Laura Ehlers - lol!! I am not a Black Friday shopper but have been known to go out just to run interference…ReplyCancel

  • Mary La Fornara Gutierrez - I refuse to go out on Black Friday. I cant figure out why any one would. At home with a fire going and a Kahula in my hand is my black friday!ReplyCancel

  • Lois Alter Mark - These are great tips but there is no way I would even consider going shopping today! Good luck to you and can’t wait to see your bargains 🙂ReplyCancel

  • Mari Collier - I do not shop on Black Friday. I did look at a couple of things on Amazon, but they had not (gasp) lowered the price on what I was considering. So, I guess you might say I watched my budget and did not burn my money.ReplyCancel

  • Leanne Le Cras - I love Australia! No Thanksgiving, minimal Halloween and no Black Friday shopping (our happens on Boxing Day) Nothing would entice me into the shops during the savagery that I’ve seen displayed on these big sales days!!!ReplyCancel

  • Michelle Poston Combs - Hahahah…this is awesome.ReplyCancel

In the spirit of the inevitable avalanche of innocuous reasons complete strangers will be filling your in-box with THANKFUL this season, I thought I’d pile-on. I’m a giver.   Shall we?   Family: Except, let’s be honest. Some of them are… Friends: Especially if you’ve thrown off the toxic ones. You already experimented with drugs […]

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  • Tam Warner Minton - Breast lift tape? That is a new one for me! I guess I’ll have to google it!ReplyCancel

    • Cheryl - Oh yes. It’s genius. It can be purchased at most fine foundation stores. The brand I use is distributed by Hollywood Fashion Secrets.ReplyCancel

  • - I’m in for the liquor, Cheryl! This list tops all the spam I receive big time! You’re genius- it’s official. xx AbbyReplyCancel

  • Roxanne Jones - All fabulous reasons to be thankful, Cheryl! I might add spandex to #7 (I’m especially grateful for it after eating Thanksgiving dinner).ReplyCancel

    • Cheryl - And what do you think spanx is made of??? If I don;t put it on BEFORE Thanksgiving then I’ll never get into it. HAhahaha.ReplyCancel

  • Diane Tolley - Family, check
    Friends, check.
    Health, check.
    A roof, check.
    Memories, iffy (still in the fog).
    Future adventures, Yikes (one broken wrist later).
    Wisdom, ssheck.
    Flexibility, snap. Oops.
    And humour, the one thing I need to appreciate the rest . . . 🙂ReplyCancel

  • Carol Cassara - Family…ummm… Frieds, mostly. Health, so far. A roof, yes. Memories…fewer as the years pass…future adventures…how do you define adventure? Wisdom oh yeah…flexibility is what I do in the gym…humor? Hahhhhhhaaaaa!ReplyCancel

  • Stacia Friedman - Humor comes from pain and, God knows, there’s plenty of that in the aging process. The last time I “bounced” out of bed, I had to tak a handful of Advil and get an emergency appointment with an orthopedist.ReplyCancel

  • Lois Alter Mark - Yes times ten. And I’m thankful to read your posts which always add a bright spot to my day!ReplyCancel

  • Lisa Carpenter - Grace! I’ve received far more grace than one could reasonably expect this year. So very thankful!ReplyCancel

  • Rose Kimosh - To my Sister Witch
    I am thankful for you and the many pauses and laughs you give me.
    I do try to read your blog in public just to scare everyone around me with my gasps and gaffaws…
    and to let them know I am fortunate to have a friend that can make me that noisy and happy.
    ~ RosieReplyCancel

  • Kimberly Montgomery - And WHAT would we do without our sense of humor? I guess we’d be cranky nuns.
    Kimberly XOReplyCancel

  • Carolann Iadarola - Yes, I like all of your reasons. There is always something to be thankful for. I just watched a short doc on Cuba…I said God Bless America 10x’s to myself while watching it. And, thanks for this post. It’s always nice to be reminded just how important it is!ReplyCancel

  • Mari Collier - Oh, you left out, and I still have most of my teeth. LOL Go ahead, climb that mountain and think of me when you do. Not going there anymore.ReplyCancel

  • Sheryl Kraft - So perfect! Love your sense of humor and fun.ReplyCancel

  • Rosalind Warren - Where on earth do you get these illustrations? They’re fabulous and so is this post. I’m totally with you, except for the part about climbing that mountain. I am so not into adventure. Just waking up each morning is thrilling enough for me.ReplyCancel

  • Molly Stevens - I’m thankful for sweat pants since even a trace of elasticity triggers bad memories of the time when I used to wear girdles, and pantyhose. Even spandex can be binding! Happy Thanksgiving.ReplyCancel

    • Cheryl - Do you remember garter belts? I do. Thank goodness for pantyhose/tights. And Gobble Gobble to you too!ReplyCancel

  • Julie Sullivan Frueh - Absolute perfection.ReplyCancel

  • Leanne Le Cras - love a short and sweet gratitude list – and my blank would be “humour or I’d have beaten my mother to death with a baseball bat by now” – as they say on Duck Dynasty…..”happy happy happy!”ReplyCancel

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