Accentuate Home Styling and Consulting

How Edgy Are You In Your Personal Life?

Turquoise bluesSmall & stylish apartmentTurquoise RoomJust how edgy are you in your personal life? This question could probably speak House

about the many aspects in our life and style that make us who we are.

Love It! Colors…I cannot get enough, but within reason. I am edgy.

I love to try new looks for decorating.

 

 

 

typewriter

I am the writer of this blog post. I am edgy and will add this to my home and lifestyle page. I hope you become inspired. COLORS……

I love colors so much. I cannot get enough of the use of them. Of course, I won’t overdue it in a room, but that may be something different for someone whose had a non-use of colors in their home space or style.  And, you know what, white makes all colors “pop, jump out, and make you smile” because it creates a great deference of its use inside of you; a happy feeling. The space looks fantastic with the blend of colors.

What is your favorite color(s)? As much as I am enthralled with color(s), I also like black/white together. We are all inspired by colors in the positive and/or negative. It may be that some people  like to wear colors inspired through clothing, pictures & paintings, color wheels, some by the way walls, furniture and floors are put together. What is your way to appreciate colors? How do colors make you feel? Happy, sad or indifferent?

Allow yourself to be inspired. Don’t be afraid. I’ve talked with people who say they are scared of the use of color. In many cases they cannot foresee the use of the color(s) in their minds-eye. Don’t be afraid. Think of all the things that you were a little unsure of and now you can do it without a blink of an eye. Colors can be changed if you don’t like them (maybe, not the same day), but just the fact it can be changed. I would sample any color you’re not sure of before you paint an entire space. If it’s a wall, just place a sizeable paint brush swooch on the wall and live with it for a week or so. See it in all types of light; could be sunlight, cloudiness, nighttime and artificial lighting. Test it in the room where you intend to paint. Pick a small, unnoticed area on the wall, or on the furniture you’re painting, etc. You know what I’ve always done? I have always painted a swooch on the wall that will give me a good contrast. A little tiny splash will not do much to tell you how the paint color(s) will work. You’re going to paint anyway, so do the sampling so you can make a good decision.

All I will say is….HAPPY PAINTING!

 

 

 

 

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YOUR LIFE-ALTERING MOMENTS (JOURNEY) IN LIFE.. (Part 1)

PRAYFUL HANDS

My life altering moments happen many times as I move along the road of life. It happens daily through prayer ,  conversations with others, reading books, papers and/or magazines; It happens, and there is nothing I can do to change it. Nor, do I want to change it.  It is based on the interactions I have every moment of every day. It’s God-driven (my opinion), and I’m happy about it. I leave it up to HIM, fore he knows the plans of my life. So, that being said, I ask you to take your journey into some of your life-altering moments. Think about those moments, times and experiences that changed you and shaped you into the person you are. The one thing I know is we can never lie to ourselves about who we are. Your brain demands you recall (even when you try to forget).

This is an early morning blog, and I woke up thinking about life-altering moments, and it’s not a surprise. God seems to do that to me a lot.  I had to write and it’s another part of who I am. None of us are one dimensional. We have so many great things about ourselves to share and help other people to grow. This is supposed to be how the world works, as I know and read about it (my opinion). Writing, I have always loved, but not as much as I do now.

 I love when the mind takes us to safe places of thoughts that make us realize we are more of a person than we even believe. We are blessed beyond measure and often times miss the mark or that moment just passes by like the wind. You feel it; cannot catch it or stop it in its path. Life is just like that, isn’t it? How many times have you had a thought to do or say something and poof, it’s gone. Whatever takes it place can become your life-altering moment. Did you realize that? Every moment is important in your life. Every experience, positive or negative is important in your life. Don’t miss out on your poof-moments.

This is what writers do.  They think and think, and even when the thinking is turned off for a relaxing time, the mind is still working. Thoughts and pictures of things are always there. It’s a wonderful way to create and seeing ideas formulate as the task begins. This is exactly what happens when I am decorating a space. I see it before I do it. So, the ideas are formulated, and I take it from there. I write a lot (notes to remember stuff, ideas and life).  Life and lifestyle is what I write about,  and decorating is life as you live within it surroundings. All of us have opinions about most everything. These thoughts can be monumental for us or can stifle us. Writing things down about who you are helps you to take full notice of the gifts and challenges that God has set upon you. We grow and grow as long as we live. We never stop growing in learning about how we can make a difference in this world. We all can, you know. attitude changes everythingThis is exactly why we are here. What is your gift? Find out and use it. Every living person in this world has a gift of some sort. Seek it out. You have an obligation to share it with others. As a decorator, I helped people see beyond a chair in this corner, or a wall painted white or a particular color, or wood floor vs a rug. As a writer, I hope to awaken your imagination to something that you are excited about. People often times base their life and lifestyle on someone else’s. There used to be a television program called….This Is Your Life…., and the host would surprise someone with people they hadn’t connected with in a very long time. It was always happiness that ensued. This is what your life can and should be. We all face things that make us happy and/or sad. It’s a fact of life. Humans are just like that. It’s a gift, because we can see how far we have come from some of our experiences which happened yesterday or 30 or 40 years ago. This is life altering, when you can move onward; it doesn’t mean to forget, but it means to not get bogged down with those things you cannot control. The truth be told, that is EVERYTHING IN LIFE.

We, the people do not control ANYTHING at all. We do not breathe on our own. It’s life being given to us every single day, and not through a mortal person. Some people, sad but true have a machine that keeps their lungs moving. But still, that’s a gift that someone invented that machine for this very purpose. This is all Godly moments that I refer to in this blog. And, because the words have come so easily and the time of awakening was just right, I had to write it NOW.

Here’s a life altering change for some who are saying aloud or thinking….”I have no life altering moments. Nothing in my past or my future (that I can see) would Remake Kitchen Chairsindicate that”.  Well, I am here to say and reassure you that you have had one today as you read this blog. You will think about who you are, what God has given you (didn’t He wake you up this morning)? That alone is the big. There are other gifts you have for now. Today, you may be the best at a particular thing, but tomorrow it could change. Someone else would possibly take up that mantle. Well, I know I have a keen eye for color and quite daring when it comes to making changes in the home. I love the adventure of trying a new idea (could be placement of furniture, color on a wall, flooring, etc.). I want something different, not the same look I have grown out of.  Thus, I decided to make a change to the chairs in my home(see attached picture). Everything in your life/style can be changed to represent your attitude of who you are, what you like and how you relate to the change. This happens through all phases of life, except with my family. I love them forever, never get tired of them, and pray to have them in my life for a long time to come.

As the time comes, I will continue Life Altering Journey – Part 2. I hope you enjoy this read and have some aha moments of personal discovery. Please feel free to communicate with me. I would really like to know what you learned from this post. Send to: deccorqueen@gmail.com

 

Accentuate Home Styling and Consulting

BE TRUE TO YOURSELF (don’t be fooled by life’s encounters & boundries)

Christmas 2009 006Purse and shoe accessory rackentertainment ctr

 

Be True to Yourself (don’t be fooled by life’s encounters and boundries)  (1) You have a place in this world and an obligation to tell others about your gift. You say you don’t know how to find it. Think about what you are really good at now, what you enjoy doing the most, or the thousands of things that are open to you and for you. Everyone has a gift which to share with the rest of the world (if they choose). Don’t say that you’re not good at anything in particular. That is totally wrong. YOU HAVE A GIFT. No one on this earth is void of a specialty. It’s just that it isn’t always readily discovered. Sometimes, people have more than one gift. In fact, I believe that is the norm (in my humble opinion).  Maybe, you like to work with numbers, or build a house or decorate a room (I love it), etc. I know people who love to paint walls, build stuff (like me), and paint/draw (my husband). These are gifts. Share your new knowledge with friends and family.  Now this gift is not for you to sit on, but to do something very positive when using it, and share with others. At times others see your gift before you do. What is your passion? What do you enjoy doing a lot? Maybe somewhere in there is your gift/passion. Give it some real thought, what can you do with the information you find? This is probably your gift, or at least close to it. You may have to continue your search to get it right. It could be more than one gift, so watch out. Don’t get overwhelmed and full of anxiousness about finding what you’re really good at, and how you’ll work with it for yourself. Ask your friends and relatives what they think you do really well. Some may think you are great at something in particular.

Perhaps, you sing great, or are a wonderful teacher of music, or dance. You may be a great speech-maker or a greeter making others feel welcome. You may say you don’t know what your gifts are. I feel comfortable you’ll probably find out you have several, not just one. You may do one better at one than the other, but nonetheless, they are your gifts. (2) As a decorator-writer, I  love to see people think outside of their comfort box when it comes to decorating. They should write down what their ideas are, so they can elaborate on how they will use the ideas in their present space. Of course, you know if you do the same thing the same way all the time, you’ll get the same results. (3) I sometimes consult with homeowners to help them discover a look that speaks of their personas and lifestyle may be easily implemented. (4) exploring ideas that say something about the residents residing within the space. (5) I didn’t always know that this was what I loved to do. It came by asking myself questions and looking for answers. It requires me to come outside of my “safe” box to see exactly who I am. However, some people never come out of their box, therefore, they end up searching repeatedly for what is important about them. The answer is ..Just because you are a creative person doesn’t mean you shouldn’t be Aware and True to Yourself (do not give up or give in)! Keep growing, keep growing. It will take a short amount of time or a possibly a lifetime.

I love to help others discover their decorating styles. I recently made a shoe accessory stand, as well as an entertainment center (see pictures above). I am enjoying my additional gifts recenty discovered. Believe me or not, EVERY SINGLE PERSON has gifts that needs to be encouraged. Some sing, dance and are great writers,  are profound public speakers, some have great imaginations and make great writers, some are great mathematicians, some are genuine people-persons. Every single person has been born and given a gift; a gift that is a positive in helping others. Then, be encouraging in helping someone else find theirs.

Our next blog will be March 2015. Thank you so much for ‘liking” our blog page/website at http://accentuatehomestyling.com . If you haven’t done that, please take time to visit our website, We would love for you to leave us a nice note that you were there and what your interest is for the blogs we write.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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How Shalt the Rental House Be Treated? (The Rules Of Being A Great Tenant)

Accentuate Home Styling and Consulting - OB Euro Living for Easy DaysHOW SHALT THE RENTAL HOUSE BE TREATED?  (The Rules of Being A Great Tenant). There are no hard or fast rules about how ‘the rental house’ shall be treated except the need for the renter(s)  to keep it in good condition, and take care of it as if it were their own. Maybe, that is the wrong approach, but I have faith in people. I believe that people care and are grateful when they receive a clean and attractive space to live in. I would not readily believe that anyone would abuse the opportunity on purpose. But, maybe I’m wrong!

This topic is referred to because of the experience I had awhile back, hence the title of this blog, HOW SHALT THE RENTAL HOUSE BE TREATED? (The Rules of Being A Great Tenant) This blog has come about due to a conversation I had with someone thinking about purchasing property, fixing it and renting it out.  Putting forth an effort into making a place so welcoming, homey and comfortable would be very attractive to someone seeking such a home space. They would jump to the keep it in pristine condition. I cannot say this is what occurred in my experience, but just suffice to say, it wasn’t pretty. I must add, this didn’t happen recently, so I’m over it. However, I wanted to write this blog, so I thought I’d share some early information in order to bring you up to this period of time. I must add that I believe that homeowners who are renting space shall provide the renter with quality space to live as well.

I guess it was because in my personal experience, I was truthful and the renter was not. Although, I checked references, etc. I realized it’s easy to give names of people who will sing the praises of another person. This is exactly what occurred in my instance.  Anyway, long story, short. One of the main rooms in the home was completely destroyed with animal urine down to the concrete of the floor (meaning destroying a beautiful, plush rug) and which left an odor that was unbearable. Well, no selling the house at that particular time. I was left wondering were we too nice, trust the people too much, or were we just a little naïve?

During this time our life plans changed, and we had to move due to work changes.  We had the experience of renting a home and settling in. Once accomplished, we would then start looking for another home. Bitter sweet experience at the time; many great memories. We didn’t think of anything else except to keep it in good condition. The owner was wonderful, and I thought if ever we are in this position (oh, we were, weren’t we)?  I know how I wanted my home treated. And so, it happened. The transcription of this message is starting from the end to the beginning.

So, how did we come to this disaster? It’s not very recently, but I think about it often when others talk about their rental property. All I know is that my husband and I, owners at one time of a rental home had been disappointed to the maximum. As you see, I still think about it from time to time. I recently talk to someone who has had fabulous experience with their renters. I love to hear this. I keep thinking what did we do wrong. We checked as many reference as we could. It just begs to think about it when someone tells me about their ‘great renters’. I am so happy for them, and pray their experience will stay just that way. To me, it doesn’t matter whether it happened today, yesterday or years ago. I believe that most owners rent their space with good intentions to the renter and have thoughts of what they would like if they were the ones renting. Now, I know this isn’t written in stone, so there are exceptions.

I believe that people are of good heart, and they mean no harm. Somehow, I have run across people who get in an uproar when you state the rules of the house (not telling them how to live). I am talking about the rules the landlord shares with the tenant. If it unreasonable, I believe the person leasing the property should voice and ask questions so that all parties will be on the same page. Am I wrong in stating this? The owners shall voice what they would like the tenants to observe, and what would break the rules. It’s a matter of agreement and all parties should be on the same page at the same time throughout the lease time. It’s amazing how some people do not even respect the space they will live in. It does always come back to…. how would anyone want to be treated by others, and how would anyone wish their possessions used by another to be cared for? I guess if someone doesn’t care much about what they own, who they are or how they live, then I should not expect them to take care of what is offered to them on a temporary basis.

How Shalt the Rental House Be Treated? I do hope the way the renter would want to be treated living in the space. The owners have a obligation of providing a space that is really liveable and pleasant to be in to the renter. In other words ……. ‘do unto others as we would have others do unto us’. This is perfect and affects every one of us as we share and live in this world together. Happy Living!

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The Day After…….And a Time Before

bedroom#2-1

The beginning of the two biggest Holidays. Hopefully, you’ve had a great Thanksgiving, enjoyed your dinner and did not overeat (you say you did, and if you did, you may be feeling a little lazy or just plain tired today (like me). Stop! Get up, stretch and get going. After all, this is the beginning of your height of energy. It’s the Christmas Season and the time to give and receive.

Day after Thanksgiving Day….it’s been quiet, and a great time to reflect. It’s also a somber moment realizing how quickly the year has gone by. it seems I was, just not very long ago, trying to decide what was going to happen for the summer months. That, of course, has come and gone. I guess my mind has to focus on these couple of months right now.

 

100_0456I am excited for the New Year, as I work on a project already in the making (at least in my mind). I will fill you in when I really formulate my thoughts. One of the things I will share is that I want to take Accentuate Home Styling & Consulting in a slightly different direction, and I am excited. We’re a forward-thinking company, engaged with bringing new ideas to our readers and customers.

We pray you’ve had a fulfilling Thanksgiving. We wish you the most wonderful and blessedl Christmas and New Year 2015. Look for our blog in a couple of months.

 

Rita

 

 

 

 

 

 

Accentuate Home Styling and Consulting

Are You Still Living With Pop-Corn Ceilings and Enjoying Them Less?

blue Kitchen CeilingIf you read the title, looked up at the ceilings in your home and found yourself with not so happy thoughts, I sympathize with you. Yes, my home is an older home and still have these awful popcorn ceiling(s). In fact, everyday I look up in disgust. The issue of removing the popcorn is two-fold. So, if you are shaking your head in agreement with me, I feel your deep, annoying feelings experienced every time you look up. 1. This is an extensive, expensive  project and proposition.  2.  These ceilings are dirt catchers and hard to dust. 3. If the ceiling was popcorned prior to 1970, it may contain asbestos. This process would mean you would have to remove the popcorn with a lot of safety factors in place. If it contains asbestos, that can be challenging, expensive and dangerous if not removed carefully and a certain way. I would definitely have an expert check out your popcorn ceiling, if you’re not sure when it was put in.

LET THE FUN BEGIN …….

 

You lose popcorn all over the floor, in the air as you take your feather duster to the chore. Oh, how I relate to you if you have popcorn ceilings. And, not only that, you have to wear safety glasses and definitely don’t breathe (joking) or try to talk while doing this chore. I feel like I’m suiting up for some special project, other than dusting my ceilings.

first impressionI really cannot stand popcorn ceilings for so many reasons. How do you feel about popcorn ceilings, whether you have them now or had them in the past? If you dealt with them, there are many reasons why you want to get rid of them or at least disguise them in some way. So, I knew it would be a messy job to get rid of the popcorn on the ceiling from an older home, not to mention the expense. They are in every room of my home.

I decided to paint the ceiling. So, when the decision was made to paint the kitchen, I was determined to not ruin the paint job by leaving the ceiling with this horrid popcorn effect. I knew I wasn’t going to scrape it away (that would take an eternity), but decided to put some color on it. It worked wonders! This was a great way to put a decorating touch to the ceiling, or hiding anything you felt you didn’t readily want to be noticed. I haven’t looked up to see who actually invented this horrid idea for popcorn ceilings, but I am confident is was to hide defects, etc. on the ceiling. Popcorn ceilings will quell the loud noises by absorbing some of the sound. Aha, there is something good about it.

What have I done? Well, look at the picture of the ceiling included in this post, and you will see I’ve painted it. Yes, that is probably the easiest way to disguise the ceiling, rather than have it taken off (can be quite expensive), and replaced with a ceiling with a decorative pattern or a smooth painted ceiling that looks so good. What do you think? This is exactly what I will do, eventually with all the ceilings in my home. I especially am thinking about whoever was the first to enjoy this space probably enjoyed the ceilings, but for me and my family, we can truly say “Absolutely Not”.  What’s your thoughts about popcorn ceiling? Am I the only one not enjoying this decorative touch? I want to know who joins me in this opinion. If you like popcorn ceilings, would put it in your home or are already enjoying the beady look on your ceilings, please let me know….why! I’m very interested in how these ceilings are appealing. I think I must have missed something about this design.

We are looking forward to hearing from you. Your opinion is important.

Accentuate Home Styling and Consulting

Hello and How Are You? I’ve Got a (short) Story To Tell

miss you images

 

 

 

 

Hi to All,

This is an open letter to you today. Some of you know me and know about Accentuate Home Styling & Consulting. Why am I taking the time to say “hello” again? Well, I began to realize that each blog I write, I am hopefully meeting new people. As the Internet goes, we are all pretty much strangers to some degree. So, I will start out with a “hi”, and “thank you” for taking the time to check out our blog.

Now, I must confess we aren’t new. We haven’t just decided to stop by and chat. No, we’ve been here for quite awhile and have become acquainted with some of you on a person-person basis, and others through our blog and DIY service.

Thank you for caring, sharing and reading our blogs as often as possible. Please share them with others. Thank you so much!

 

Rita

Accentuate Home Styling & ConsultingAccentuate Home Styling and Consulting

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Fall Home Improvement Tips and Scams to Watch Out For

Reprinted by: Accentuate Home Styling & Consulting

It’s officially fall, which means now is the time to prepare your home for the colder months ahead.

By Boston BBB (Star Patcher)Updated October 8, 2014 at 12:32 pm
Fall Home Improvement Tips and Scams to Watch Out For

It’s officially fall, which means now is the time to prepare your home for the colder months ahead. This time of year, many popular home improvement services range from heating to roofing contractors, but it’s important to do your research on a business to avoid falling victim to a scam.

BBB warns homeowners to be aware of common fall home improvement scams that may be circulating in your neighborhood.

Heating Contractors:

Before doing business with a heating contractor, find out what model system you own and its maintenance history. Make sure to check that the contractor’s licensing and insurance meets your state’s requirements. Don’t forget to ask family members and friends for recommendations and check out reliable heating contractors at bbb.org. Be cautious of any heating contractors that solicit work door-to-door or claim they’re offering a special deal for working nearby, this is always a red flag.

Roofing Contractors:

A roofing project requires a skilled and qualified contractor, so it’s important to thoroughly research roofing contractors. Be sure to get at least three estimates for the job and don’t feel pressured to hire the contractor with the lowest offer; the lowest offer will not always be the best. When getting an estimate, make sure the roofer does a thorough inspection rather than a quick estimate from the ground. Be sure to ask for proof of insurance, any required licenses and necessary permits. Be wary of any roofing contractors that solicit work door-to-door or offer low prices because they have left over materials from a previous job, this is a red flag.

Oil Contractors:

Oil is a necessity for many homeowners, making it important to find a reliable oil supplier that can both service your equipment and provide quality oil. Ask friends, family, and neighbors you trust to recommend affordable oil suppliers they may use. Contact multiple oil businesses to find the best offer and service plan for your needs. Be sure to research financing programs through oil suppliers, as there are multiple ways to pay for your service and oil. Understand the details of each program before signing any contracts. Finally, be cautious of any supplier that goes door-to-door offering very low prices for oil as pricing is determined by crude oil prices.

Chimney Contractors:

If you often cozy up by your fireplace or wood stove, it’s important to have your chimney cleaned and inspected annually to ensure safety. A reputable chimney sweep will be able to clean and detect any dangerous problems within the chimney. Be sure to request multiple estimates from different chimney sweeps to compare the cost of the job that is needed. Check the credentials and find out if the contractor is certified through the Chimney Safety Institute of America (CSIA) and can provide proof. Ignore chimney sweeping businesses that solicit by phone or door-to-door and claim they were just “in the neighborhood.” These scammers promise an extremely low price for a chimney cleaning, but once they start working they will “discover” an urgent repair. Scammers will take your money and leave the job unfinished or worse than it was before.

 

As with any home improvement service, it’s important to do your research before hiring a contractor. Many scammers claim to be legitimate contractors, but aren’t the roofing or heating contractor they claim to be. Although the scammers are out there, there are still many reputable home improvement contractors that will get the job done on time and within budget. To find a reliable contractor you can trust, check out the BBB Accredited Business Directory today.

accentuate home styling and consulting

Do You Think You Are Who You Are and Know Everything About Yourself?

 

 

 

This is an idea of how your space could look. You can do this for yourself!

 

 

Small & stylish apartment

Think small or big changes. I’m sure there’s so much you’d like to do, especially since we are in the Fall season and according to protocol, colors must change. That even goes for the colors of our clothing as well as home. For some, they even change their hair color, nail colors, etc. :)  It’s a good thing and fun to experience changes. This way, you and I get to learn more and more about ourselves. Do you think because you are you that you know everything about you? Not so! There’s so much you and I are constantly learning everyday ourselves. I just learn that I want to build pieces of furniture (can you believe that). Well, something new, and I am so excited to try my hand at it. Remember when you were small how great you felt when you tried something new or different and was complimented. Even if you weren’t applauded for what you created, but at least for trying was the biggest thing….ever.

Thanks for allowing me to express and share some of life’s great moments of discovery with you. This is also what I still get excited about. When I can help client’s discover a plan of action for their space they didn’t think they liked. But, when shown to them, they have this world win of discovery. I love it!

I know you have dreams about how your space will/could look. Wait, please allow me to share something quickly. Accentuate Home Styling & Consulting offers consultations for interior decorating, and we will assist you online. We assist our would-be clients in helping them cement a plan of action for their DIY proposed project.

I wanna meet you. :)

 

 

Accentuate Home Styling and Consulting

Yes, She’s on Food Stamps and No, You Shouldn’t Judge Her For It

moeny is time

BY  | POSTED 3 MONTHS AGO (This is a repost)

 

 

“Must be nice to have the government pay for your food,” a man muttered under his breath to a woman bagging the eggs, milk, and bread she’d just gotten at Aldi. The woman to whom his comments were directed, walked out to her car, her cheeks flaming, her stomach churning, its meager contents threatening to make a reappearance. The not-so-nice voice that resides in her head sneered at her, saying, “You can’t even buy food for your kids. You’re such a loser.” She wrenched open the broken door of the beat-up, old van and the voice continued, “You can’t even afford a car that isn’t falling apart!”

She set the bag of groceries on the floor, got in, put her head down on the steering wheel and lost it. Hot tears streaked a path down her cheeks like lava steadily flowing from a volcano. That’s the thing about keeping your emotions in check, tamping them down, pretending they don’t exist – at some point, much like that volcano, they burst forth at the slightest provocation.

Fat tears continued to fall, leaving slight black mascara stains on her pants as she did that gasping/hiccuping/snotting thing, her face contorted with every ounce of pain she felt. She swiped at her drippy nose with the back of her hand, pulled it together, put on a happy face, and drove home to her kids.

I remember reading a friend’s Facebook status a while ago wherein he complained that a woman had paid for her groceries with food stamps then proceeded to walk out of Walmart and get into a Cadillac. He had no problem judging this woman to be a scam artist based on his “vast knowledge” of her. Clearly, if she drove away in a Cadillac, the only logical conclusion is that she’s scamming the system. Or maybe, just maybe she –

  1. Was borrowing her sister’s car because she doesn’t actually own a vehicle.
  2. Owns that Cadillac and lives in it too because her house was foreclosed on.
  3. Saved up and bought the Cadillac a couple years ago before her husband died leaving her with no source of income.
  4. Has a child dying of cancer and medical bills most of us can’t even fathom and needs the food stamps to feed her other children right now.
  5. Bought the car long before her husband walked out on her and has since thought about selling her car to pay for food, but then she wouldn’t have transportation to and from her job that barely pays the rent.
  6. Can hardly make ends meet herself yet has taken in her drug-addicted sister’s kids to help raise them in a more stable environment.
  7. Any number of other scenarios that aren’t nefarious.

This isn’t about food stamps specifically. It’s about judging others. Why are people so darn quick to judge? WHY? Why do people think they have enough information that they can determine the whole picture? Who appointed random strangers the judge, jury, and executioner of all mankind?

Maybe the man in Aldi would’ve kept his words to himself if he knew that the woman’s 18-year marriage had ended and she was struggling, working two jobs, to take care of her kids by herself. Maybe if he knew that she received less than an third of the child support she was originally granted. Maybe if he knew she had over $10,000 in medical bills. Maybe if he knew she’d spent the morning at the courthouse trying to buy some time before her house is foreclosed on so that she could get a loan modification. Maybe if he knew this was her third attempt at going through the modification process because the first time it was denied because the bank wrote down her phone number incorrectly and apparently no one there knows how to use mail or email. After going through the whole tedious process a second time, it was denied because there was one typo on the employment verification letter and instead of simply asking her to correct and resubmit it, they denied her request altogether. Maybe if he knew she was missing work to go to court and was sick to her stomach because when she doesn’t get paid for a couple hours, it makes a big difference. Maybe if he knew she was told it would take 5 minutes this morning, yet she fed the meter 2 hours’ worth of quarters “just in case.” Still, when she returned to her car, she found a parking ticket attached to the windshield because the meter had expired 5 minutes earlier. Maybe if he knew that when she got back to work, a coworker asked her, “What did you get your daughter for her birthday?” and she had to choke back tears, bite her lip until she tasted the metallic tang of blood, and cheerfully lie, “Oh I haven’t really had time to shop yet.” Maybe if he knew that her checking account had a negative balance because it’s a week later than she usually gets paid and still no check from her one job, yet her automatic payments have gone through.

Then again, maybe it wouldn’t have made the slightest difference to him. Maybe he was having a bad day himself. Maybe his own problems were weighing so heavily on his mind that he couldn’t see beyond them. Maybe he was sinking in his own spiral of despair, questioning the existence of a God who doesn’t seem to care. Maybe he was thinking, Why bother? What’s the point? Or maybe he was just a close-minded jerk. Who knows? But that’s my point. Who actually knows what’s going on with the people around us? To think we have a clue based on a teeny, tiny glimpse into someone’s life is ludicrous. We don’t. So stop judging. Take a minute and realize that the person you’re judging as rude, incompetent, stupid, annoying, ignorant might just be having a really crappy day. Know that you can’t possibly know enough about this stranger to make an informed decision about their motivations and even if you could, it’s still not your place to judge him. Period.

That is all. Carry on.