I know I am behind on writing and posting stories and photos to my website. I’m doing okay, some days are still physically challenging, not like some of my friends who have much more physical challenges than I do. Mostly, mine are pain in my abdomen from all of my operations and some in my left leg and foot from the lumbar spine degeneration. Once I am up and moving I get a lot better and the pain seems to decrease.
There are so many things I am grateful for that they override any other things happening with my body. Like a special woman in my life many years ago told me: stand up, take two steps, and say thank you God I can walk, talk, and breathe at the same time. She was not able to do that with her medical condition for about seven years. There were times it was challenging for me to do that after some operations. I try not to take it for granted that I can do these things.
Many years ago I read somethings that impacted my thinking a lot: Is today the worse day of your life? Then quit looking like it is. Another was: Live each day as if it’s your last, one of these days you are going to be right. A billboard I saw in Albuquerque said: Dream as if you will live forever, Live as if you will die tomorrow.
Being home because of this pandemic I have been doing lots of baking and cooking and trying new recipes. Giving away lots of home made treats has put smiles on the faces of my neighbors, people at places I shop, get my vehicles worked on, and many other places. Yesterday, I made my favorite treat… chocolate, chocolate chip cheesecake cupcakes. You can go to the Handle The Heat dot com website and find the recipe. I take a bit of a shortcut which works just fine. I add mini chocolate chips to the cheesecake filling, and pour about 3/4 batter into the cupcake pan and then add a spoonful of the cheesecake filling and then bake. I don’t add the extra chocolate on top after it’s baked. I make them as mini cupcakes and freeze most of them then eat frozen when I want a snack. I also use silicone cupcake liners which makes the cupcakes come out easy.
In September, I got to use the certificate I won in an auction to raise scholarships for students to go to college. It was for two seats on the Goodyear Zeppelin, it used to be the Goodyear Blimp, but the new Zeppelin is much better. There are so many differences that made it a much more enjoyable ride. In 2013, I got to go up in the Goodyear Blimp twice which was really fun and especially since I got to share it with some friends. My mom was still alive then so she and my sister joined us.
I have lots of photos and will write more about it hopefully soon. In the beginning of October I think it was, I went camping for two and a half days to Johathan Dickenson State Park and it was nice to get away and be with nature and in the fresh air. I was able to hook my hammock between two trees and read a book laying in the hammock which is one of my relaxing things I like to do while camping whenever I can find trees to use, which is not often at most campgrounds. Weather permitting, I am hoping and planning to go to Arnold’s Wildlife Rehabilitation Center in Okeechobee, Florida, about 100 miles north of me for a few days. I love going there and seeing the animals and helping to feed them. Also, the camels like to let me pet them through the fence. There are several stories and lots of pictures of my previous visits there.
That’s about it for now. Hope to write more and write the story about the Goodyear Zeppelin ride and camping soon. You can search this site for my 2013 Goodyear Blimp experiences.
I am Darrell Bratton and I just heard you speak. I thanked you for helping me when I lived in Saudi Arabia. I follow digital nomads on YouTube. Do you have a YouTube channel? I will continue to follow your travels on the website.