Newest Blog Entries


Are You Involved with a Narcissist? Learn about this type & how you can escape the web they weave

September 11, 2020 Barbara Ballinger & Margaret Crane

In surfing through the possibilities of potential dates on a favorite site years ago, Barbara, divorced, spied a tall, age-appropriate possibility whose witty profile caught her interest. She emailed, he responded and within a day or so they chatted live on the phone. More conversations followed as well as a string of clever emails. She was having fun, he seemed to enjoy himself, and they agreed to meet. All went well at the first rendezvous. But when he called to plan a second get-together, the first red flag surfaced. In a phone call, he told her he was dating other...


Have You Ever Been Duped by Another Person? Well, Join the Club. Here’s How to Spot a Phony.

September 04, 2020 Barbara Ballinger & Margaret Crane

We all shade the truth…at times. Exaggerate. Admit it, be honest, come clean. We make ourselves taller, richer, thinner, smarter, more of a fan of certain people and trends to curry favor with them and more exuberant about our accomplishments with others. These embellishments are basically harmless. We do so perhaps to fit in or impress.  Is it insecurity? Afraid we won’t measure up? We may do it in different degrees, depending on the people we’re with, circumstances at hand or our mood. The key is that hopefully we don’t inflate our talents and skills to the point that it...


Hanging on to Stuff? Now’s the time to Pitch It without Regret

August 28, 2020 Barbara Ballinger & Margaret Crane

When we were stuck inside right after the pandemic hit and before it was deemed safe to head outdoors, many of us started to heed Marie Kondo’s advice to tidy up. But so many of us wearied of the task to declutter well and when we look around, we still probably see too much stuff, mostly excess stuff, still there in every room. Peer into closets and drawers, and the stuff overflows. Go up to an attic or down to a basement if you have them, and boxes usually are crammed with belongings and often doubles, triples and more of...


EEW: Dark Thoughts? Substitute Gross Encounters in the Big Apple & Elsewhere for a Dose of Reality

August 21, 2020 Barbara Ballinger & Margaret Crane

Disclaimer: This was written before the pandemic. Some mornings we wake up at 3 a.m. and are disturbed by dark thoughts. For starters: What’s going to happen to this world we are leaving behind for our children and grandchildren? To counteract these low points, we have decided when things are low to go lower. Sorry to Michelle Obama for changing up your good advice, but sometimes low moments call for even lower thoughts.  To shift from a depressing subject, focus on one that is so distasteful that it drives what’s bothering you from your mind, sometimes with humor. We call...


Cold Comfort Soups to Help us Chill While Covid is as Hot as Summer

August 14, 2020 Barbara Ballinger & Margaret Crane

As temperatures soar along with cases of covid in U.S. hot spots, we craved something cold, something that would help us chill, so to speak. Our thoughts went straight to icy cold soups.  Cold comfort soups epitomize the yearnings of summer. They’re light, soothing, cool and easy to make. Preparing them keeps the heat out of the kitchen. In addition, they are a colorful savory or sweet bowlful of everything good that summer produce has to offer. We are both reluctant to go to the grocery store, so we asked ourselves, where is the safest, best place during this pandemic...