Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Merry Christmas

May the spirit of Christmas bring you peace,
The gladness of Christmas give you hope,
The warmth of Christmas grant you love.

~Author Unknown

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Good Times

I came home from finishing up some Christmas shopping to music blaring. As I entered our family room, I could see two free spirits getting their groove on. Nessa and Diandra were dancing up a storm while baking cookies. As soon as I was in their sight, they grabbed me and we all started dancing. It continued after I got home. Big sigh ~ I am so smiling!

I am enjoying this time with my family so much that when I wash my face at night, I have noticed that my smile lines around my eyes are soooo deep. I know that I am getting older and that is to be expected, but I just smile looking at myself in the mirror even more knowing how they got there.

Rob is spending most of his time with his dad helping him at work. When they first got here, Charlie was working and all Rob kept asking was, "When is dad coming home?" He couldn't wait to see his dad.

I am really happy! Although the time feels like it is just flying by. I am relishing every minute!

Monday, December 22, 2008

The Nutcracker

my collection of Nutcrackers

My collection of Nutcrackers started years ago, when my aunt Sandy gave me my first two for Christmas. I have always loved the story of the Nutcracker. When my children were young, I decided to take them to the Nutcracker ballet. We went all dressed up and it was a day I will never forget. Rob and Diandra got to mingle with the sugarplum fairies, while cookies and punch were being served.

This was their first ballet and they didn't quite know what to expect. Rob loved the fight scene and I will never forget how big his eyes were while watching it. Diandra asked how come there wasn't any talking. I explained to her they were talking, though not out loud but instead through the expression of dance and the movements they were making. Diandra has said, "starting out so young in dance (3 years old) this was when it "clicked" for her. I got it! Dancing changed for me."

The San Fransisco ballet was showing a performance of the Nutcracker on television the other evening. Diandra made some hot chocolate and we sat and watched. I will have to get the video. It is a keeper.

The display of Nutcrackers is a favorite in our home and brings back a warm memory. When Rob and Nessa first walked in the house, after many hugs, they gravitated to the them. Nessa expressed how she always went every year. It is truly a family favorite!

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Planes ~ Trains? and Automobiles

Santa at Monterey Fisherman's Wharf

“Life is what happens to you while
you're busy making other plans”

John Lennon

It is good to make plans, but it is also good not to count on them because life always has it's own plans. That is when being able "to go with the flow" really kicks in. You need to be flexible; be able to bend. I feel like I have been doing the human pretzel this past year.

Rob and Nessa's plane was supposed to arrive at 9:50 P.M. last night. With all of the storms, they were told it could take up to two days to get to their destination. We were very disappointed to say the least. We had to look at the bright side and know that getting here safely was priority. On the plane from Omaha, Rob said that when they boarded the plane they had to wait for people to volunteer to get off because there was too much weight. About seven people volunteered and the stewardess's had to pick the remaining three. Rob expressed it was the worst feeling.

They were stuck at Salt Lake City Airport all night. The hotels had to stop their shuttles to the airport because of the snow. Rob made a makeshift tent with their jackets and the chairs (That's my boy; taking care of his girl and making the best of it). He said they woke up this morning to people sitting in all of the chairs around them. Can you imagine?

At one time, we were trying to figure out how to get them here sooner. We talked about driving to Utah or seeing if the train was in route to and from there to here.
After having to switch airports, the plane is on schedule today and they should arrive here later (We didn't need the train..). We have lost half a day of our visit but arriving safely is what really matters.
It is better than two days!
Rob and Nessa are exhausted and can not wait to get here.
I can not wait either...

Friday, December 19, 2008

Christmas Past

My mom (the oldest), uncle Jim and aunt Jackie

One of my most favorite things that I like to do, is to look through our family albums. I can remember sitting at my great grandma and both of my grandmother's homes, looking through them for hours. I learned very early that there was a story behind each picture by asking the "why, who, where and when." My grandma's would love telling me what was going on and I would always learn more about our family in that way. I loved not only learning about my family, but also admired the objects that filled the picture.

Happy Holidays! Enjoy visiting, feasting, and laughing with loved ones. Most of all, savor every minute of Christmas at your home or where ever you are.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

* Home Comforts *

A sparkling frosted wreath hangs in front of a mirror.

A snowman on our kitchen island to greet us.

A simple touch of Christmas past here and there where you would least expect it.

I love adding an ornament to the nobs of the hutch or curio doors.

Did you know? The first snow globes, reminiscent of paperweights, are said to have come from France in the early 1800s.

Easy Homemade Hot Chocolate

6 cups milk
2 cups half-and-half
1 (24-oz.) bottle chocolate syrup
2 tsp.vanilla extract
Miniature marshmallows (optional)

Stir together first 4 ingredients in a Dutch oven over medium-low heat; cook, stirring occasionally, 10 minutes or until thoroughly heated. Serve with miniature marshmallows, if desired.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

As I Sat

As I sat watching the waves crash against the rocks, I could only thing about how great God is.

My husband asked, "What are you thinking about?"
I said, "Nothing."
He said, "How do you think nothing?"
I was silent and only smiled.
He then grabbed my hand and said, "You look the most relaxed I have seen you in a long time ~ Peaceful."
I said, "I am. I'm not thinking about an MRI, C-scans, tests, cancer, school or eating disorders. I am looking at that (pointing to the ocean) knowing that there is a God."

Praise to God

Let us always offer to God our sacrifice of praise.
Hebrews 13:15

You are a great God.

Your character is holy.
Your truth is absolute.
Your strength is unending.
Your discipline is fair....
Your provisions are abundant for our needs.
Your light is adequate for our path.
Your grace is sufficient for our sins....

Your are never early, never late....
You sent your Son in the fullness of time and
will return at the consummation of time.

Your plan is perfect.
Bewildering. Puzzling. Troubling.
But perfect.

Grace For The Moment

Friday, December 12, 2008

Can I ...


I took my love, I took it down
Climbed a mountain and I turned around
I saw my reflection in the snow covered hills
'Till the landslide brought me down

Oh, mirror in the sky
What is love
Can the child within my heart rise above
Can I sail through the changing ocean tides
Can I handle the seasons of my life

I don't know....

Well, I've been afraid of changing
'Cause I've built my life around you
But time makes you get bolder
Even children get older
And I'm getting older too

Oh, take my love, take it down
Climb a mountain and turn around
If you see my reflection in the snow covered hills
Well the landslide will bring it down

If you see my reflection in the snow covered hills
Well the landslide will bring it down.

written by Stevie Nicks-

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Annual Day Trip

San Francisco Bay Bridge

Square Garden

face on Forever 21 building

The famous San Francisco cable car

beautiful architect with old iron fire escape

my sister Jess took this photo ~ I just love it!

Always looking up

Christmas tree at Pier 39

This last Saturday, I went to San Francisco. It has started out to be a tradition of sorts that every year my Nina charters a bus. It is such a treat to not worry about parking or paying attention to driving while visiting and catching up with everyone. This is my second year that I have gotten to attend. It lands on the first weekend of December which is also one of the biggest shopping days. We start by christening the trip with a glass of mimosa. We also had a raffle on the bus to see who could win their bus fare back. It was foggy in the valley but beautiful and clear in the city of San Francisco. The city was decorated with all of the Christmas trimmings and bows. The bus let us off at Square garden where we all went our separate ways. Then we shopped ~ shopped ~ shopped! We were supposed to get back on the bus at 4:00 P.M. to go to Pier 39 to do some more shopping and go out to dinner, but my sister Jessica and daughter Diandra weren't ready, so we met with everyone later. We finished up our shopping and went to Starbucks to refuel with some caffeine.

We had to take the city bus (which looked like an old bus back in time) to the Pier and that was really neat in itself and was a first for me. We went through Chinatown and it felt as if you were really in China. I couldn't take in everything fast enough. I just wanted to slow it down. It was wonderful! I loved watching... people. There was an old lady who looked like she had stepped out of the 50's. She had a sheer scarf tied around her head and then there was... well I could just go on and on. I had my camera in hand and whispered to my sister what I saw with the people. Beautiful moments. It was just a moment I didn't want to forget. I could see these moments captured in photos, done in black and white in some photo book. I started to fidget with my camera and my sister whispered to me, "You take one picture, I am running as fast as I can away from you." She made me laugh out loud so hard, that we both started laughing uncontrollably. At times her laugh was more of a nervous laugh; she knows me too well.

We had a yummy dinner at the Pier and really enjoyed each other's company. I am already looking forward to next year! This day starts as early as 5:30 A.M. in the morning and we don't step back into our home until 10:30 P.M. ... but, it is soooo worth it!


Sunday, December 7, 2008

Too sweet not to share

The Wisdom in Hot Chocolate

A group of graduates, well established in their careers, were talking
at a reunion and decided to go visit their old university professor, now
retired. During their visit, the conversation turned to complaints about
stress in their work and lives.

Offering his guests hot chocolate, the professor went into the
kitchen and returned with a large pot of hot chocolate and an assortment
of cups - porcelain, glass, crystal, some plain looking, some expensive,
some exquisite - telling them to help themselves to the hot chocolate.

When they all had a cup of hot chocolate in hand, the professor said:

‘Notice that all the nice looking, expensive cups were taken, leaving
behind the plain and cheap ones. While it is normal for you to want only
the best for yourselves, that is the source of your problems and stress.
The cup that you ‘re drinking from adds nothing to the quality of the hot
chocolate. In most cases it is just more expensive and in some cases
even hides what we drink. What all of you really wanted was hot
chocolate, not the cup; but you consciously went for the best cups.
And then you began eyeing each other’s cups.

Now consider this: Life is the hot chocolate; your job, money and
position in society are the cups. They are just tools to hold and
contain life. The cup you have does not define, nor change the quality
of life you have. Sometimes, by concentrating only on the cup, we fail
to enjoy the hot chocolate God has provided us. God makes the hot
chocolate, man chooses the cups.

The happiest people don’t have the best of everything. They just make
the best of everything that they have.

Live simply. Love generously. Care deeply. Speak kindly.

And enjoy
your hot chocolate!!

* My Nessa sent this to me ~ Author unknown

Monday, December 1, 2008

It's starting...

to feel a lot like Christmas!

I can feel the magic in the air.


Can't you?

My heart is filled with hope.
Thank you for all of your comments on my previous post.

I have a brand new niece that was born today!
18 days and counting until my kids come home!

Wishing you all ~ love and happiness!

Saturday, November 29, 2008

I Believe


I have to smile every time I look at this photo. There has been a softness about Charlie since his cancer. Just like this for instance, he would have never rolled up his pants wearing his boots, let alone walk around like that in his pre-cancer days. I see him doing little things like this all of the time now.

In the last two c-scans since Charlie has stopped his chemo, the scans showed that there were two spots on his spine. They suspected that it was
bony metastasis (which I thought was just a fancy way of saying that he had arthritis), but also noted that it had not grown in the second of the two scans. The first scan, it went over my head. I was more focused on his cancer and what was going on with that. The second scan, I read, re-read and didn't like what had been noted about "it" (the spots) had not grown.
I decided to google some of the words that I didn't understand. One being
bony metastasis. My heart sank upon my readings. In his last routine appointment, we mentioned to our Doctor that Charlie was still experiencing a great deal of pain. Charlie has had a bone scan and it did show something and now they want to do an MRI. The MRI was scheduled the 14Th of November. Although we were called in the late morning of that day, letting us know that the machine had broke. Our next appointment has been scheduled a little over a week from now.

It is good that we are getting this done and we will know once and for all what these spots are. If it has spread to his bones then we will deal with it. If it is arthritis... that is to be treated accordingly.

I have been trying my best not to give this any energy and to look at the positive outcome either way. When the MRI was canceled, Charlie and I both felt as if it had drained us. We were both holding on to this date (of his first MRI) and knew very shortly we would know once and for all. As best as we have been trying to deal with this, it just showed us that on some level it is affecting us.

I believe in the power of prayer.

Send a prayer for Charlie.

What Is Bone Metastasis?

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Ulterior Motive

pumpkin patch

Tomorrow is Thanksgiving and although I should be baking pies, I am procrastinating. I have a bit of trouble with the pie crust. I refuse to buy the "already made" simply because both of my grandmother's and my mom never did (okay, one of my grandma's did, though I am not saying who, but I saw how my daddy protested against this and it has stuck with me ever since). I never know how my pie's will turn out, but nonetheless they are made with love. Last year, I can sorta remember crying and maybe a curse word or two were involved. They did get made though.

I find myself looking forward to this holiday of Thanksgiving and have plenty of reasons for feeling this way.

1. It was always my dad's favorite holiday and probably the only holiday I didn't hear him grumble about. It was truly about getting together and spending time with one another. My family would have some serious (but not heated) debates about different topics that were going on in the world at that time. We would also play games and laugh into the night. There was always a good balance and growing up, I was always aware of it.

2. I always reflect on the year at this time and count my blessings. I am truly thankful to God for my husband. I am thankful for His grace and Mercy above all else. There was a time when I didn't think I would have my husband for one more week let alone through the holidays. I am also thankful that my daughter is so much like her dad. I have watched her fight her way to get better with her eating disorder. She wants very badly to be healthy in her mind, body and soul. If she keeps this up, I have no doubt she will get there.

3. I am looking forward to getting together with my family. On the other hand, I also can not wait for this Thanksgiving to be over with. I have to tell myself not to rush this holiday to get to the next. I don't want to miss the reason for this season. I am so thankful.

So this is where I feel a secret ulterior motive is settling in. Everyone knows that it is count down from Thanksgiving to Christmas. You see, our son and beautiful daughter in-law will be coming home for Christmas this year. It has been way too long since I have seen him... a year in a half to be exact. Charlie can not wait either. We have all longed for this moment and we are all getting antsy with anticipation. I find myself getting a little emotional with many feelings stirring inside me.

Note~ click on my very first photo collage (oh my goodness, this was so much fun). There are bee's on the flowers!

Monday, November 24, 2008

Call the police!

A picture was taken!

I recently took my daughter for a walk down a road where I used to babysit for one of my high school teachers. Ms. J is what we called her and she was my art teacher. She was the coolest! Her house was a street over from a park and the park like setting continued blocks out from it's diameter. I have wanted to take a walk on this street like I used to and decided to put the girls (our chi's) in the car and drag my daughter with me. I grabbed my camera just in case I saw some potential photos to be taken. As we walked you could hear the wind's breeze through the trees. It was wonderful! I took some pictures of this and that as Sophie was pulling me along. Some of my photo's are blurry because of that. As we made our way to the street along the park, a black Tahoe stopped and rolled it's window down. The woman inside asked me if I was a photographer. I didn't think anything about it, because quite frankly I am asked that quite often; I always have my camera with me and take pictures of things ~ don't you? I explained to her that no, I wasn't a photographer. I just took pictures for my blog. She asked me what blog? I told her it was just a personal blog. She asked me the name of it. I recall now that I am thinking about it, I didn't tell her. She asked me my name and I did tell her that. I explained to her that I used to babysit for one of my teachers. Anyways, to make a long story short, she started to ask me question after question. At first I thought she was just being nice and striking up a conversation. As she continued, she told me that she seen me take a picture of her house and was wondering what I was doing. That is when she showed that she had a little attitude. My daughter then spoke up rather loudly, "Look, my mom just likes to take pictures. She doesn't mean anything by it." It was then I realized the woman had literally jumped into her car looking for me and really just wanted some answers. It kinda shook me up and stuck with me for two days. It made me wonder what if someone had taken some pictures of my house, and what would have ran through my head. How would have I reacted? I had zoomed in on what attracted my eye, but to a person watching me, it looked as if I was taking pictures of their house... and I guess I was. I really didn't mean anything by it, but now I find myself hesitating and a little reluctant to take a picture. wahh*

Friday, November 21, 2008

Free Falling

necklace ~ a gift from Darlene

confetti of leaves

The weather has been so warm here that the kids are coming to school in shorts and tank tops. Because it is the month of November, my heart tells me to put on sweaters and boots, but my brain tells me to toss the sweater as soon as I put it on.

The temperature is supposed to drop and we are supposed to get some rain this next coming week.

How is the weather your way?

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Closed ~ Open

Anybody who knows me, would say that I am a bit reserved or shy. I have come across to people at first as being snobbish but when they get to know me, they come to realize I am anything but that. I wonder sometimes why I am the way that I am. I have been like this my whole life. I sometimes think they may not like me or have no interest in what I have to say about a particular subject. I wish that I could be more out going and not be so timid. But, then I wouldn't be who I am I guess.

Blogging has been good for me in that sense. It has made me reach inside myself and just put it out there; whatever I am feeling. It has also helped me to work through some of life's challenges. Though to be completely honest, it has also tripped me up. I can read some blogs where it seems the person has no problem expressing themselves and then I think, 'What is wrong with me?' I am learning to accept that, I am who I am.

It is all that I have to give.

And that is okay.

I am okay.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Uh Oh... I have been tagged by

Wanda Mom!

field of poppies

This picture was taken from my folder labeled bridge. It was a day, that I just had to get some fresh air. My life felt very heavy at the time. I remember that I had been cooped up in either a house or a hospital and decided to take a drive in the country. I ended up at Knights Ferry Bridge where incidentally, I would jump off into the river below with all of my friends in high school.

Pictures can hold a thousand words... or feelings.

"The rules…"

Find the 6th folder in your pictures directory and post the 6th photo in it.

So here are the instructions:

* Go to your sixth picture folder then pick your sixth picture.
* Pray that you remember the details.
* Post it on your blog.
* Tag 5 others, leave a comment to let them know they’ve been tagged.

I tag
Deb, Darlene, Mary, Jack, name open for whoever wants to do this.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Trial Run

painted barn door at the pumpkin patch

We had "Thanksgiving Dinner" at our school this last Friday. My day started with preparing this feast... not even forty five minutes into it, I realized that I needed help when I noticed the time and had not even started my breakfast for the kids. It just so happened that this day there was much more prepartion needed than a normal day. I panicked! I called Armanda, my trusty sidekick that comes in an hour and a half later than me, and asked her if she could come NOW! She was great and dropped whatever she was doing and was there to help me in a jiffy. I couldn't have done it with out her. I had to go back after my shift and help serve lunch; because there was so much food. Armanda and I were kind of surprised with ourselves when we were asked by the staff, "who made this great meal," by replying (just looking at each other dumbfounded, like who made this?) "Well, I guess we did." Later when we were washing the dishes, Armanda had mentioned to me that we made a turkey dinner for close to one thousand people. We were kinda shocked at that thought. Not that, that number changes. It is just that when we go in at the start of each day, we look at the menu and just prepare. We just do it with out really thinking about what we are really doing in numbers (If that makes any sense). She was pretty impressed with this thought and the seriousness of what we are doing. She then added that we could work for a restaurant. Hell's Kitchen ~ I don't think so.

Before you knew it, we were putting away the left over food, wiping tables and cleaning the kitchen. We all had to laugh at how it was... we prepared, served, they ate, we cleaned, it was over.

I felt wiped out when I got home. We had all joked about this just being a trial run with having to prepare and have our actual Thanksgiving festivities still ahead of us. I am grateful my mom will be having Thanksgiving at her home this year.
Thank you mom! I will be helping.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Traveling Light

Charlie's cousins Harley

I have always had a fascination with motorcycles. I don't want to be the driver, but would love to be the one on the back seat. I want the leather chaps, jacket and long hair blowing with the speed of the wind behind me... okay, I'm getting real ~ it would have to be in a braid because it would be a tangled mess. But, I want the whole nine yards and I can hear the music now!

Last year Charlie was looking at used Harley Davidson's before we knew that he had cancer. This last summer would have been the summer that Charlie and I had plans to just take off for the weekend and travel light. We had to give up that dream because life had other plans for us. When we head off with our trailer behind us on one of our camping excursions, it never fails that we will hear the roar of these beautiful bikes pass by us. Charlie and I will just look at each other and silently say in our mind to each other, 'Maybe next year baby.' My heart sinks every time with green envy, thinking that could be us. But, then I know that deep in my heart that it wasn't our time to experience that dream. It does gives us something to talk about for the future though. We have a little joke about the dogs and what would we do with them; we take them everywhere with us. I tell Charlie that we could get one of those side carts and put the girls (the chi's) in there. He would chime in, "Don't forget about Jack (our Rottweiler)." We will have to get them helmets; the one's with little spikes or horns. Can't you just picture us now? Varooom!

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Can't get this outta my head!

taken at the Pumpkin patch

From time to time, there are some songs that I hear on commercials that just stick; I can't seem to get it out of my head. Target always has some great jingles that are played during their commercials. Whenever this commercial comes on, I will start singing it out loud and find myself singing it through out the day in my daily routine. With the outcome of the Presidential Race (which I am quite pleased!), this little song resonates with me.

Brand New Day

Oh oh oh oh oh
This is a brand new day
And it's getting better every single day
This is a brand new day
And I'm feeling better when you say
La la la la la love
La la la la la love

by Tim Myers featuring Lindsey Ray

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Flaming Shades of Fall

Colors burst in wild explosions
Fiery, flaming shades of fall
All in accord with my pounding heart
Behold the autumn-weaver
In bronze and yellow dying
Colors unfold into dreams
In hordes of a thousand and one
The bleeding
Unwearing their masks to the last notes of summer
Their flutes and horns in nightly swarming
Colors burst within
Spare me those unending fires
Bestowed upon the flaming shades of fall

- Dark Tranquility, With the Flaming Shades of Fall

Friday, October 31, 2008

~ Yikes!

Cruella de Vil or ummm... Diandra

My daughter loves to dress up for Halloween. I believe that when she has her own children some day, she will be one of those mommy's that dress up with their children. This makes me smile.

When she was getting ready for a Halloween get together, I was laying on my bed, talking to my mom on the telephone. I already had two of our three chi's next to me, when the third (who had been with Diandra) suddenly ran in to lay right next to me and just stared at the door. I thought that was odd, but just went on talking to my mom. Then I heard the echoing footsteps of high heels walking down the hall. My daughter or should I say Cruella (in character) came in my room. All three of the girls started growling and barking; I guess in fear for their dear lives. If Cruella had seen the new movie Beverly Hills Chihuahua and had it her devilish little mind about a new chi coat, the girls were not having any part of it!

Have a Happy & Safe Halloween Everyone!

Friday, October 24, 2008

Pumpkins and Ghosts

I recently went to my hometown to do some shopping and also to where the first 13 years of my childhood was spent. The second part was really quite by accident. My girlfriend had called to tell me the skirt that I loved at the boutique where she works was marked down. I had also gotten a post card of the neighboring stores around that little boutique to tell me they were also having a wonderful sale. Whimsys had Vera Bradley, Lollia and also Crabtree and Evelyn Naturals all 20% off and of course there was also my skirt! My girlfriend had suggested that If I came early enough that I could stop by her house (out in the country) first to see the spare bedroom she just painted and also wanted to get my approval. We rushed around the house, so that she could show me this and that before she had to go to work. Her son has grown cotton and I also wanted to get some photos of that before I headed into to town. She then insisted that I go to this pumpkin patch where this lady is like Martha Stewart. Laurie promised me I wouldn't be disappointed. She jotted down instructions in how to get there. There was also a barn that I wanted to get a picture of, but was very bummed because I couldn't find it. When I arrived at the pumpkin patch, there were a lot of photographers taking pictures. I enjoyed watching them as they were trying to capture the perfect picture. As I stood there watching I had to wonder what they saw in their frame. After they would leave to go to another area, I would go over to where they had stood and just look. That is the beauty of taking pictures. What one sees through the eyes of others. I find that so fascinating. My girlfriend was right, I wasn't disappointed. It was in fact beautiful. After the experience of the pumpkin patch, I went to find the cotton field and got some photos of that too. I then made my way to where this magnificent sale was. Although I had missed the exit because the next exit was pass the town and I had to make a big J loop. I ended up lost out in the country trying to get back to the highway and then things started to seem very familiar to me. I knew exactly where I was. I came into the back way to the town of Merced where I grew up as a child. I turned down my old road and as I drove very slowly by the house where we used to live, I couldn't believe how small it looked. There was the kitchen window, my mom and dads bedroom window, and the two bathroom windows. I stopped the car and just looked. I could see my aunt Kim, my little sister and I skating down the sidewalk. My mom pulling weeds with her bandanna on. My dad with the garage door open with all of his tools working on the old red dodge pick-up in the drive way. Looking down the side of the house, I could see into the backyard. So many memories... I started to cry. It reminded me of the story, The Christmas Carol and going back in time with the ghost of the past. Only they were very good memories of a very happy time in my life. Then it only made me sad to think that when we moved from this house to the town where we moved to, my life had changed with my parents divorcing. Well, then you know which ghost comes next, the ghost of the present and everything in between those two ghosts. I thanked God that the ghost of yet to come hadn't come to visit me.

I have experienced this once before; it happened when I posted on my blog when my birthday came this year. At the time we had just found out not too long ago that my husband had cancer. I looked at the picture's I had posted, and I felt very sad because I knew how things had turned out for that little girl and what she was going through to the present day. It was then that I looked at myself like a third party (me~myself~and I). I felt as if I was this little girls best friend or mother. I was kinder, a lot more gentle and loved her a bit more. In the aquatics class at the end, we are to hug our self; it is a stretch, and I found myself doing longer stretches than anyone else with the help of the class instructor bringing that to my attention as well, in saying to someone (me), "Looks like someone needs some extra hugs!" In fact that is what I was doing... giving myself a hug.

When I made it to the little boutique, my girlfriend Laurie said, "Girl, where have you been? Did you get lost?" I said, "Yes, actually I did." I told her about missing the exit and where it took me. With Laurie being my girlfriend since childhood , she knew it brought a lot back driving down that road. She asked me if I was okay, and I assured her that I was. Writing this, I had to smile. I had also called and told a
very close girlfriend (the one friend that has come into my life the last ten years of it), about my day. She also knew what "driving down that road" had meant for me and also asked if I was alright. I feel very blessed with my girlfriends. They know where I have been, know who I am and they love me for it.

Monday, October 20, 2008

October is...

Brest Cancer Awareness Month

It just so happens that this next week, I will be getting my annual mammogram. I feel really good about getting it done and want to encourage you ladies not to put this off. The school I work at, we have lost a few teachers to breast cancer and also have some fighting this. In memory of these teachers and to show support in this cause, the whole school has been wearing pink all week... even the boys. It is really very touching.

Early detection is your best protection!

* I don't know why, but I feel like doing a cheerleader kick and yelling, "GO GIRLS!"


Friday, October 17, 2008


Neglect ~ Habitual lack of care; To disregard or pay little attention to something; To fail to care for, or attend to something; To fail to do or carry out something due to oversight or carelessness

When a person goes through a rough time and feels so consumed by what is happening in their life, they can forget to take care of themselves. These things just don't matter anymore or seem unimportant.

This last Mother's Day, my kids gave me a gift certificate to get a pedicure, massage, and body scrub with lunch to also be served. They encouraged me not to wait and get it A.S.A P! At the time, Charlie was going through his chemo treatments and I just didn't feel it was the best time to get that done. I also felt guilty in the thought of pampering myself, knowing how my husband was feeling. I just couldn't do it. I kept waiting for the perfect time, well you know how that is... it never comes. The months kept going by one after another. So, I decided to just call and make the appointment. It was wonderful! I have to admit, I was a little nervous only because I have never done this before and didn't know what to expect. I think that the next time, I will be more relaxed about it and be able to enjoy it much more. Ha! Did I say "the next time?!" Yes, I think I could get very used to that kind of self-indulgence. Even though, I still have a very hard time thinking about spending money on myself like that. I thought about how a little less stressed and very relaxed I had felt afterward. Was that something I could do on a more regular basis? Well, I guess I could work some over-time to pay for it... giggle. That would be defeating the purpose. I have to learn how to do some of that kind of pampering at home.

What do you do to de-stress and/or pamper yourself?

Thank you Rob, Nessa and Diandra!