Short Shorts

Short Shorts

Short Shorts

I’m Almost There!

An update on my progress toward my new career in Real Estate:  Getting a license is challenging.  I have passed the required three online exams and will take the State exam on July 7, and passing that, I am told, is not a walk in the park– only half of those taking the exam pass it the first time around. I am determined not just to pass it ( a score of 70% is required), I intend to ace it.  Keep a good thought for me.

Love My New GPS

I have no sense of direction and can’t read a map. (I know that does not bode well for my new real estate career.) When I leave the house I have to pause and make a conscious decision about whether to turn right or left out of the driveway and that “conscious decision” may take more than a few seconds. Yes, it’s that bad, and it has nothing to do with age. I’ve always been “directionally challenged”. In my next life I want three things: a cook, housekeeper and driver. Mostly, a driver with a GPS. Since I have not yet advanced to my next life, I have to do my own cooking and cleaning (such as it is) and find my own way around. I’ve had a GPS for a while but it wasn’t great so I decided to get a new widescreen Garmin Nuvi and what a wonderful gadget it is!

Here’s what I like about the new Garmin: it’s better than driving with a girlfriend who constantly chatters about nothing. The Garmin Lady only speaks when she has something important to say and it’s always loud and clear. Not only does she tell you which lane to get into to turn right on Centre City Parkway, she tells you that the Shell gas station is on the corner where you will be turning. If you decide to take a different route she immediately gets you back on track without the usual annoying “recalculating” message.

Most convenient is that The Garmin Lady will sit anyplace. In California, because you are not allowed to do much of anything (except pay exorbitant taxes), you are not allowed to affix the GPS to the windshield. Which is probably a good thing in this case because the gadget is so big. I can’t put it on the dashboard because the dashboard slopes and the GPS won’t stay put. I have found that The Garmin Lady is happy to sit on the seat next to me. Like I said, it’s better than having a distracting chatty person next to you and you never have to stop so she can go to a restroom.

No Love For Adobe Acrobat DC

I wish I could be as enthusiastic about the Adobe Acrobat software upgrade I recently purchased. I have Acrobat XI Pro on my computer, love it and use it a lot. The one shortcoming is that you can’t edit scanned documents. When Adobe came out with an upgrade called Acrobat DC, a big deal was made that the new upgrade allowed editing of scanned documents. I immediately purchased and downloaded the upgrade. What a disappointment. Clearly, not all the bugs are out of it. It’s a mess.

According to the Adobe website it’s possible to disable the upgrade and get a refund and you are given instructions on how to start the process. That’s the good news. The bad news is that it took the better part of a morning to wait for a “chat” session to open that would hopefully provide a way to get a refund. Long story short, I’ve had to challenge the charge on my credit card in order to get the refund. Thank you AMEX.

Kudos for Amazon

I love Amazon. Especially the Prime feature. Not only will they deliver the next day, they will deliver on Sunday. Even better — you can return anything and the process is beyond simple. If you don’t want to take your return package to the UPS store, for a small charge UPS will provide a return label and pick up your package at your home. (In California, that’s cheaper than paying for gas). Best of all, Amazon quickly credits your credit card account. Isn’t America great?

Beards and Beheadings

A recent edition of the online International Business Times reported that a blog in Iraq claimed ISIS had “arrested a group of young men for shaving off their beards and locked them in jail for three months. … If they repeat this offense, ISIL will rule to behead them.”

As you may be aware, I loathe, detest, hate and abhor male facial hair. If American men with facial hair had enough guts they would shave it off just to irritate the hell out of the terrorists. Since our impotent government isn’t doing anything to stop, let alone annoy the savages, this is something American men could do without government permission (well, at least for now). Girlfriends, let’s unite and clean up this mess. While they are sleeping, if necessary.

Holly Vellekoop’s Encouraging New Book

Holly Vellekoop’s new book, Encouragers: Those Who Help Others Succeed is now on Amazon in
soft cover and Kindle. I believe you and your family will enjoy reading about those who assist others to succeed and those whom they helped. Holly interviewed many people as to who their encourager was in their journey to success. Some well known people included in the book are:
Lt. Col. Allen West
Stuart Borton, owner Yellow Dog Cafe
Marshall Frank, author and former Miami Detective
Winston Scott, former Astronaut, now VP at FIT
Christian Tamburr, percussionist, 2014 FIT Artist in Residence
John Martino, actor (The Godfather)
Dr. Valerie Allen, author, psychologist
Dr. PMH Atwater, author, noted Near Death Experience researcher

Before You Are Put Out to Pasture . . .

My friend Dr. Helen Harkness, owner of Career Design Associates in Garland, Texas was quoted in the Dallas Morning News in a very motivating article, “Boomers have options after no-choice retirement” It’s a must read for boomers and new retirees who haven’t thought about what they are going to do with what may be another 30 years in “retirement.” Dr. Harkness believes it’s critical to “Plan for what’s next before you’re put to pasture”. Amen to that!

Dr. Harkness is guest editor of the Summer, 2015 issue of Career Planning & Adult Development Journal, Volume 31, Number 2. You can read it here: In particular, please read the article “Old people are people too, so let’s act accordingly” by Aubrey De Grey. It’s a “mind opener” that will improve or fortify your perspective on the value and potential of “old” people.




  1. Great information, Barbara. I love this format and you have so much to share. Good luck on the State exam!

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