You are envisioning me in rain hat and cape, standing in a light, misty, English rain, right?  Or maybe some of you see me in a long dress, wind whipping the skirt and my hair, like some mad woman.  Relax and dismiss those images!

On rainy days, I have a whole list of gardening chores that can be done inside my house or a store, or perhaps on my front porch.  (OK, I admit that I did sit on that porch during Hurricane Ike.  It was safer and cooler than my bedroom which has a 70 foot pine looming over it.  Impaled in my bed by one of it's limbs is not how I want to go!)  

Rainy days are perfect for planning projects, designing beds, making lists of needed items, ordering seed or live plants from my favorite suppliers, setting seed to soak in my little bottles and making the markers for planned plantings.

I'm supposed to get sun this afternoon for about four hours, during which I will finish the asparagus/strawberry bed.  If we (husband and self) very energetic, we will also get the tomato bed built.  I'm not counting on that however.

Rainy days are also good for poking through the garden shops.  Smaller crowds, and the plants all look so green and inviting!  Or I can sit on my porch and pot up seeds or container plantings.  

Last but not least, I make my TO DO list for tomorrow, at the top of which is Pulling Weeds.  So much easier to do that when the ground is wet.  Right now it mostly consists of pulling up Bermuda grass.  Right now, however, I am off for a nap in preparation 
What I would wish for all I love.  

I would wish that you feel loved.  I would hope that you feel loved enough to quit destroying yourself with alcohol and other drugs.  That you would feel loved enough that you do not feel the need to try to control anyone but yourself.  I wish you to feel loved enough to know that if you behave lovingly to someone else, you grow in love, even if they don't behave lovingly back. Why?  You grow because love lives inside of you, and the more of it you push out into the world, the more it grows.  .When you love yourself, and I do not mean feel prideful or superior to others, just love yourself  so that you do not accept any kind of abuse from others, do not talk badly to yourself about yourself, and do not feel any urge to self-destruct, you will feel loved every minute of every day.  People of faith would say you have made contact with the the Holy Spirit or have gotten right with God.  The Bible tells us that "the Kingdom of God is within."  To me,  this kind of peace is reaching the bit of God I believes lives within all of us, the place where unconditional love lives. I'm not sure what non-believers call it, maybe being "One with the Universe."  Whatever you call it, reaching that point feels wonderful.

I would also wish that you would know this:

It is the people who love you most who will tell you the things you least want to hear.  The people who don't mention you have a problem with alcohol, who don't try to get you off drugs, who don't tell you your attitude is unloving, selfish  -- those people do not love you.  They do not care if you keep losing jobs, lovers, spouses, friends,   money, whatever you are losing by doing the things you do.

Love does not mean never having to say you're sorry, except to those who already know for sure you love them (and that may be fewer people than you think).  You are human, each and every one of you.  You will hurt almost everyone you love at some point in your lives.  Even if they know for sure that you love them, you may not need to say you're sorry, but it can't hurt.  You can never know what thing you said, or what thing you did made them feel unloved, especially if they never tell you.

Saying "I love you" may say less than a hug after an argument.  

So...I am sorry for the things I have done and said that made any one of you feel unloved.  

I do not pretend to love everyone.  There are people who have made me feel so unloved, and I know these particular people will never say "I'm sorry" to me, because most of them will never acknowledge that they ever said or did anything.  I ask God to forgive me for being unable to love them, and to forgive them for being so afraid to admit to being human that they have actually hurt someone.  Then I let them go.  In a sense, they are dead to me.

The rest of you:  those who acknowledge they are human and may have hurt me by word or deed -- I love you.  I have no money, material gifts, cannot afford to send flowers, chocolates, or even cards.  I have only this to offer:  you and I are humans travelling through life together.  We may not always agree.  We may each get mad, say things that hurt.  I know I am really bad about saying "so--and-so is so stupid" when what I really mean is "I cannot understand where that attitude so-and-so has comes from."  I hope we do not wish each other to suffer, and will do what we can, genuinely, to alleviate or understand each other's suffering.

I am sorry.  I have failed more times than I am aware of to speak or type lovingly to you.  I'm REALLY human with all the failings I have.  But I love you.  I wish you joy, freedom from pain, suffering, fear, loneliness, bitterness.  
I am about to sign the blogger agreement with Small Planet Foods.  I don't have the slightest ethical compunction about doing so.  There are 4 boxes of Cascadian Farms cereals sitting in my kitchen inventory at the moment,.  I have yet to meet a Lärabar I don't like, although I confess I'm out right now. We buy them when they are 10/$10 at Kroger, or we have a coupon that combined with a sale price somewhere makes them almost free.  I simply cannot afford to do anything else.  I'd love to try their chips!  Specifically, I want to try the chocolate Food Should Taste Good  chips with guacamole!  I'm having trouble finding a store that stocks this flavor so far.  Target has a few flavors, so does Walmart.  Whole Foods carries the brand and currently you can get a $1 off 2 pkgs here.  Also a coupon for $1 3 Lärabars, $1 off any 2 Muir Glen products*. [no expiration dates given]  They are offering a  $0.75 off one bag here.  Whether they have the chocolate I don't know'.

I realize they may reject me.  Good nutrition is difficult on an extremely tight budget, though, so I hope they will offer me the opportunity to tell my readers how good their products are.
* Organic Pasta Sauce 2/$6 this week
I'm not quite sure when I first heard this term, but I think it was in the early mid-80s.   Even after reading The Urban Dictionary, I'm not quite sure what it is. I do know that my first instinct is to believe nobody who wasn't a self-aggrandizing narcissist would use it.

I do know that the first time I heard it was from a woman about 10 years younger than myself who was such a person.  Over the years I have noticed that almost everyone I have ever heard casting this verbal mortar at anyone is not a very nice person.  

Many of them are relentless optimists who think every cause for a "negative"emotion is "a pity party." What I have decided is that most of them are running like mad from knowing themselves or examining their life.  None of them have, to my knowledge, taken any responsibility for the downsides of anything they do, whether it is stepping on a long time friend on their way to the top nor crushing their child's self-esteem.  A few have been, in my opinion, genuine sociopaths, many asocial, and almost every one of them a callous, arrogant moving box of insincerity and emotional stuntedness.  Without exception they were willing to use, abuse, exploit and mistreat others and then accuse the people they hurt of having a pity party when their victims object.

I have seen people cast the term at people suffering from clinical depression, including myself.  Hey! guess what depression is scary, particularly to people who always believed they could do anything they set their mind to.  To me it often felt like being in one of these commercial size washers on power wash: no control over anything, getting your head bumped constantly, feeling like you are suffocating/drowning, and nobody on the other side can hear me calling out for help.  When someone finally does open the door, they curse you out for hogging the washer (tell you to get over your pity party).  Then they slam the door and walk off.

I have seen people cast the term at someone who just gone through a series of life's wallops in a short time and it lost and overwhelmed.  People who are suffering from PTSD, which you really don't have to go to war to get. The long term unemployed who are fighting depression, money woes, often health woes, and hearing themselves described as "lazy," and struggling with urge to rip off that person''s neck and shit down his neck.

What I have never seen is the use of the phrase produce any positive direction for the person it is applied to, and often a negative one.  Nor have I ever seen the person using growing in respect from the objective observers.

I hope none of them have ended up in "helping" professions such as psychology, healthcare, or parenthood. The phrase "pity party" doesn't help anyone, including the person who uses it. It just a rationalization in your own hear for being an asshole who doesn't really care but was willing to pretend to be a friend until your emotional attention span expired.  It's a sign you are running from something deep inside yourself that you are too chicken to even look at face-on