Archive | March, 2020

Toni’s Extrovert Diaries~Day #7 T.E.D. Talks and Painting Bluebonnets Video

31 Mar

“I’d rather teach you to fish than just give you a fish. Who am I kidding? I detest fish, but I love to paint, so I’ll teach you how to paint.”

~Toni Armenta Andrukaitis


Today, I was inspired by my many artist friends who have been posting their beautiful artwork or sewing projects during these quarantined days. Personally, I’ve been a lazy slug for the past few weeks. This morning, I said it out loud, “I will paint today!”

This video was also inspired by my friend Sherri Murphy. She set up an art studio at her house and is teaching herself paint. If we weren’t sheltering, I’d be over there showing her a few of my tips and tricks. So, here is my how-to paint bluebonnets just for you, Sherri Murphy.

Okay! Now I’m feeling productive and not like such a slug. Not bad for a days work.

Toni’s Extrovert Diaries ~T.E.D. Talks and Walks and Sunday Sermon

29 Mar

“The difference between an extrovert’s and an introvert’s story is about five hundred words per minute. Ask me how I know?”

~Toni Armenta Andrukaitis


An early morning walk around the neighborhood this morning was a perfect start to my day. I always start my by counting my blessings and not my troubles. A beautiful sky, singing birds, and the lush green growth of Spring add to the count.

My traditional Sunday begins with greeting before 9 o’clock Mass, but today greeting Mother Nature preceded my live streaming view of Mass at St. Gabriel with Father Robert and Father Don. I enjoy following along, reciting the prayers and singing along with the hymns. Plus, I was sitting on the couch with my feet up, no kneeling. (Bad knees.)

Today’s Gospel was the story of Jesus raising Lazarus from the dead. Martha and Mary were sad that Jesus did not come when their brother was ill, but believed that he would rise on the resurrection of the last day. But, Jesus proved with His Father’s power, that Lazarus could rise even after four days in the tomb.

My take on it…. anything is possible with faith.

“Did I not tell you that if you believe

you will see the glory of God?”

So they took away the stone.

And Jesus raised his eyes and said,

“Father, I thank you for hearing me.

I know that you always hear me;

but because of the crowd here I have said this,

that they may believe that you sent me.”

And when he had said this,

He cried out in a loud voice,

“Lazarus, come out!”

The dead man came out,

tied hand and foot with burial bands,

and his face was wrapped in a cloth.

So Jesus said to them,

“Untie him and let him go.”

But, this Extrovert missed the stopping at McDonald’s with friends after church, then picking up a few groceries at the store, and maybe a stop to visit a friend or two.

I’ve been trying to make some calls to old friends and family that I haven’t talked to in a while. Here’s a good tip. Make a list of people you miss, but always forget to call. Then, call one or two every day. That’s a VERY long list for extroverts who have a lot of friends. Life is short, my friends. Tell people you love them.

I’m still watching a lot of Hallmark, BUT I’ve been recording some movies to watch when I overdose on schmaltzy Hallmark movies. Today, I’m binge watching STAR WARS movies. It’s like Hallmark but with light sabers.

A few more afternoon and evening walks, a few more chirping birds, and another slow “sheltering in place” Sunday.

Happy Sunday, my friends.

Toni’s Extrovert Diaries~ T.E.D. Talk Day 5

29 Mar

“Sheltering in place isn’t all that bad if you have a nice safe place to shelter in.”

~Toni Armenta Andrukaitis


When I mention a nice safe place to shelter in, I’m not talking about a house or apartment or luxury resort. The best place to shelter in is in your head. Too many people are watching the news 24/7, and quoting death statistics, and basically have turned their heads into a non-stop Armageddon Doomsday Dramedy. That’s no way to live. The stress alone will kill you quicker than any virus. Stay home! Stay safe! Turn of the damn news! Watch Hallmark movies!

This weekend, this introvert had trouble sitting still. I went for a lot of walks. Yesterday, I watched a live streaming of Pope Francis delivering a special Urbi et Orbi Blessing and plenary indulgence for the world. The normally teeming Plaza was totally empty, which made the solemnity even more moving. (We need all the help we can get.)

While I’m out walking, I see quite a few people outside with their kids and pets. I stay a safe distance on my walks, but I noticed that some folks will cross the street if someone is on the same sidewalk. That’s tough. I usually like to stop and talk to people on my journeys.

I did have a nice conversation with Miss Kathy’s cats. They were happy to see me and purred and chatted and let me pet them through the fence.

The YMCA is closed, but Maria does some live streaming videos on Zoom in her backyard. I logged into the Zumba class, and it wasn’t even the easy Zumba Gold class. It was the advanced version. Pretty strenuous. Yikes! It’s been a while, and I was pretty worn out after watching for 55 minutes. It probably would have been even harder if I got off the couch and followed along. Just kidding. I followed along and was pretty sweaty by the time I was done. Gracias Maria.

I like to follow my own advice, so I watched a lot of Hallmark movies today. For some reason most of them were Christmas movies, but that’s ok. Each one is such a surprise thriller. Boy meets girl, they fall in love and live happily ever after. Talk about escaping reality. Ain’t nothing real about those movies. But, it beats the news.

After a long hard day of Hallmark movies, talking to cute cats, checking emails and Facebook a hundred times, it was nice to take a late evening walk. The crescent moon sparkled with the planet Venus twinkling just beneath the glow. It was calm and peaceful. Now, for a glass of wine and more mindless TV. (No news is good news.)

Happy Saturday, my friends.

Toni’s Extrovert Diaries Day 4~ My Private Quarantined Cocktail Hour and Art Gallery Tour

28 Mar

“Art is the only serious thing in the world. And the artist is the only person who is never serious.”

~Oscar Wilde


Day 4 of Toni’s Extrovert Diaries. I only left the house about ten times today, and that was to walk the dog. Poor thing is exhausted. I’m going crazy and we’ve only just begun.

On the bright side, it is Black Russian Friday, so one of my famous cocktails will be on hand as I give you a brief guided tour of just a few of my original paintings that I have scattered about the house. (It only took me five years to hang them up.) There are many, many more paintings, unframed and squirreled away somewhere in the recesses of my “crap room” upstairs.

Cheers-here’s the tour… hope you watch it and say…”Miss Toni is …… AMAZING!!!!

Toni’s Extrovert Diaries~T.E.D. Talks/Sings Day#3

27 Mar

“When you walk through the storm, hold your head high And don’t be afraid of the dark! At the end of the storm is a golden sky And the sweet song of the lark. Walk on through the wind Walk on through the rain Though your dreams be tossed & blown Walk on, walk on, with hope in your heart And you‘ll never walk alone!”

~Rogers and Hammerstein


Today is Thursday. It’s after 7:30, and I should be at Delaney’s Irish Pub with my friends, laughing, eating, drinking, and singing karaoke. But, NOOOOO… I’m on Day #3 of “Sheltering in place.” No karaoke for me… or maybe not?

These are tough times, and it feels like we are walking through a storm, but we have to keep our heads held high. Therefore, nothing is going to stop me from laughing and singing, and maybe a little drinkin’, even if I’m by myself.

This afternoon, the TOTS (Table Of Talent Sisters) had a FaceTime group chat. Four of us girlfriends were laughing and chatting and being silly for almost 3 hours. At one point, I had to go plug into my charger-low battery. Yikes!

So tonight, I decided to have my own karaoke night. It’s funny, I noticed the other day when I was cleaning bathrooms while singing a few show tunes, (I do that) that the acoustics in the bathroom are really pretty good. What a great idea.

Toni’s Toilet Karaoke~ Day #3 Never stop singing, my friends…

Toni’s Extrovert Diaries~T.E.D. Talk Day 2

26 Mar

“There’s nothing more disconcerting than an extrovert having to stay home and clean. You actually sit around the house and notice dirt and mess.”

~ Toni Armenta Andrukaitis


Well, today is Day 2 of SHELTERING IN PLACE. The sad part is, this place is a mess. I wish I’d been confined in a cleaner house because I never really noticed how messy mine was. I was never home to notice. I actually discovered an extra bedroom upstairs that I completely forgot about. You laugh, but it’s true.

So, yesterday when I was busy counting how many sheets of toilet paper was actually on the Angel Soft double roll, I had many comments and questions asking how many sheets I counted.

I’m VERY pleased to inform you that the first roll I counted actually had 264 sheets. FOUR extra bonus sheets. I think I’m going to write to Georgia-Pacific Consumer Products to thank them for their extreme generosity.

For today’s excitement, I visited with

my old friend Henrietta Hoover. I didn’t have to travel very far because she lives in my closet. (Remember-stay home, stay safe.) You can watch me taking Henrietta back home after a long day.

It’s not easy being a “Stay at Home Extrovert.”

Stay safe, go vacuum, count your toilet paper sheets, and have a great day… but wash your hands first.

Tuesday:) Toni’s Extrovert Diaries~T.E.D. TALKS Day 1

24 Mar

“Extroverts communicate well with others, Introverts communicate well with themselves”

― pablo **********

My friends and I have been doing a lot of texting, calling, and video chats on Facebook with all this mayhem going on. Yesterday, Sherry sent this funny video of a friend of hers who was talking up close and personal to the camera about his adventures with self-quarantining and sheltering from home. During these stressful times, it’s good to laugh a little, even at our own expense.

I thought to myself, “Self… I do and say a lot of stupid stuff, even without trying. I should make some of my own videos.” I always wanted to do stand-up comedy, because I live in a pretty silly world inside my head.

When making a video, you have to come up with a catchy title. I’m a big fan of the TED TALKS, and have listened and learned from these informative and instructional free videos. So, I decided to make my own instructional and informative videos with a little levity to combat my confinement. Being an extrovert, this staying at home, indoors, no human contact, is life-threatening.

I stay up way too late at night because I really don’t have to set my alarm for anything in the morning. Here’s how my morning went today…

Montage Monday:) A Week in a Peek

24 Mar

” If you think this week was boring, wait till next week.”

~ Toni Armenta Andrukaitis


Today, I didn’t get out of my jammies till 4 in the afternoon. The sad part is, I really didn’t need to change because I didn’t go anywhere and no one came over. The mail is still out there in the mailbox. I was going to eat some lunch around 5 pm, but I got distracted calling family and friends. Then, I listened to a webinar on writing at 7 pm, talked to my son, and called two of my Tias that I haven’t talked to in years.

While we are going through all this mess, I think it’s a good time to call friends and family that you haven’t talked to in a while, and just say, “I love you.”

Well, it’s after 10 pm, I still haven’t eaten all day except for a few handfuls of mixed nuts, (sounds like my autobiography- mixed nuts) and drank about ten cups of tea. I’m not sure if I’ll eat something or just have a glass of wine, watch tv, and forget food. The latter sounds better.

Here’s my week in a peek… next week will be even more exciting…NOT!

Another week…another peek.

Have a good week, my friends. Stay safe and go wash your hands!

Sunday Sermon and Some Other Stuff

23 Mar

“Kindness is the language which the deaf can hear and the blind can see.”

~ Mark Twain


Today is the Fourth Sunday in Lent, it is the Second Sunday of watching Mass on my iPad, and the First Sunday of celebrating Mass with St. Gabriel under the covers in my pajamas. Very strange.

Today’s Gospel was the story of Jesus healing a man blind from birth. In those days, the blind and deaf were thought to have sinned or their parents had sinned, thus the punishment. Jesus disputed that idea and healed the blind man. The Pharisees and the Jews did not believe this miracle, and questioned the former blind man twice. The man was convinced that Jesus was the Son of Man sent by God.

Jesus answered, “Neither he nor his parents sinned; it is so that the works of God might be made visible through him.

We have to do the works of the one who sent me while it is day. Night is coming when no one can work.

While I am in the world, I am the light of the world.”

When he had said this, he spat on the ground and made clay with the saliva, and smeared the clay on his eyes,

and said to him, “Go wash in the Pool of Siloam” (which means Sent). So he went and washed, and came back able to see.

The Pharisees still questioned this miracle.

Then Jesus said, “I came into this world for judgment, so that those who do not see might see, and those who do see might become blind.”

Some of the Pharisees who were with him heard this and said to him, “Surely we are not also blind, are we?”

Jesus said to them, “If you were blind, you would have no sin; but now you are saying, ‘We see,’ so your sin remains.

My take on it… Sometimes those supposedly wise or intelligent people who question everything unless it is proven to them, those are the ones who miss out on what is truly important. Blind faith is an appropriate concept. We don’t need concrete proof to believe in God. We just need faith.

I am thankful that we can continue celebrating the Mass together, thanks to Father Don and all the St. Gabriel staff.

During these stressful times of confinement and confusion, it’s good to focus on our blessings and not dwell on our hardships. “Instead of stressing, count your blessing.”

I spent a lot of time on the phone in a group FaceTime with my girlfriends, laughing and sharing stories. I checked in with friends and family, and my son and his little family sent lots of photos of the babies to keep grandma entertained.

Then, there was a lot of time on Facebook sharing uplifting stories, pictures, and funny jokes. Even if we can’t hold each other close in person, we can hold each other close in our hearts.

Be safe, healthy, and happy my friends, and most of all, be kind. If you are lucky enough to be confined with your family, hold them close and appreciate your blessings. “Kindness is the language which the deaf can hear and the blind can see.”

Happy Sunday. ❤️🙏

Saturday:) Just Sittin’ Around

22 Mar

People teach their dogs to sit; it’s a trick. I’ve been sitting my whole life, and a dog has never looked at me as though he thought I was tricky.

Mitch Hedberg


This sitting around and not socializing isn’t suited for extroverts. There are only so many glasses of wine in those big wine-in-a-box containers. Ask me how I know.

Let’s see what I got accomplished today…

I played with the dog. I fed the dog, I walked the dog many times. The dog said, “Please, not another walk, I’m exhausted!” Not really. She likes her walks.

Then, there are hundreds of Hallmark movies to catch up on. But, all in one day? Pass the popcorn.

Oh, let’s not forget that book that a very good friend loaned you. Did someone say, “Wine-in-a-box?

Ah! It’s 9:09pm as I’m writing this, and I’m smiling. There’s an angel in heaven that knows that magic time on the clock. I would call her every day at 9:09. Miss you Mom.

I’m sure your day looked pretty much like mine. Stay safe, my friends.