Friday, December 18, 2009

Notorious Noel?

Seems like all you hear on the news lately is celebrity dishonorable mentions. (thanks Tiger!)
Why do we like to keep abreast of other people's dirt?

Makes us all seem perfect? Hmmmm.

Anyways, while I was watching Entertainment Tonight, wrapping mounds of presents on my bed, it was Tiger this, and Tiger that. Blah, Blah, blah...and I realized there is one blessing out of this tigerwoodscrap. The early Christmas gift it gave to the Gosselin family!
Chubby ex-hubby Jon, whining to everyone is no longer in his 15 minutes of fame, his soon to be ex-wife and 8 tiny kids can all sigh with relief that their personal trials and tribulations are not being splashed all over the T.V. and tabloids this week. Thanks Tiger! Merry Christmas Gosselins - Talk about silver linings!

Monday, December 7, 2009

And Now, Another H1N1 Unwanted Update...

Have you just about "had it" with H1N1 and the media? I know I have. While getting ready for my day, I was watching the morning news. The newscaster gave the update that while H1N1 cases are reportedly leveling out, we still need to keep taking precautions!

So, continue washing your hands guys.

Oh, and continue covering your mouths when you cough or sneeze so your germy mucous doesn't fly all over the room. Cause, seriously, most often we just don't.

Just sayin.

Friday, December 4, 2009

Sorry Guys I cannot make Those Kinds of Promises

I can't believe that it's been MONTHS since I last posted.

Not that YOU missed me. (all four of you) It's just that alot has been going on, a lot that led me far away from my desktop.

Today's a new day - I'm 30 lbs. thinner! Ya Hoo! I'm into size 10 jeans, and look darn skinny in em. I've weaned off all that awful medication that my old neurologist had me taking and I've been religious about doing physical therapy, which may or may not always help.

My mom had an exacerbation of CHF and her COPD, which caused her to sleep 24-7, not eating and lethargic. Her respirations were shallow and lungs were full of fluid. I was pretty worried about her, spent a lot of time taking care of her, another reason I couldn't blog. She's a little better now. At least she's trying somewhat. She's kinda crabby too, that's always a good sign.

I'm going to spend the day-no afternoon- with my husband Christmas shopping. Of course, the weather has turned biting cold today and we are going to an outdoor mall.
my luck.

On a side note, just because I've not been posting doesn't mean that I've not been reading. So you out there...keep on typing! I'll try to keep up, but seriously guys, no promises.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Where You Been?

Where have you been, you may have asked.
I have no rotten excuse for my blog going lame, unattended like a dressing room at your local department store when you need help “zipping up”.
I’ve just been busy living life. Just like you, and you and you there…the ones who keep their blogs current, the ones who have readers….because of it!

So, to summarize what’s up with me, here goes.
I’ve been taking care of my Mom, who passed out one evening brushing her teeth. While she was going down she had a presence of mind to try to hold on so that she wouldn’t make a big bang when she fell so she slid….down the side of the open bathroom door. My mother takes a blood thinner so any bumps often turn into black masses of pooled blood under the skin, and this time, it was golf ball size. She landed on her rump, and scooted across several rooms until she got to the basement landing, where she has steps to swing her legs over and pull herself up with the handrails we’ve installed there. Then she promptly went to bed.

Now here’s the thing. She’s a few weeks short of 80 years old. She has an untreated aneurysm in her brain (she refused to have it surgically repaired, out of fear, about three years ago) See, Mom hates hospitals, fears hospitals, and fears losing her independence along with her largest fear and that is of being forced to die alone in a nasty nursing home. She has isolated herself from the world in the past ten years anyway, keeping everyone at bay, so now, in her time of need there is no one who cares except her family. That’s where I come in. She didn’t tell me, because she knows I would make her have this goose egg of a lump checked out in the ER, I’d be concerned about the real reason she dropped in the first place. Mom, um, why’d you pass out?
So, I spent quite a bit of time with her, watching her every move while convincing her that she needs medical attention.
I had small successes.

That same week, I was fighting my own battle with my own health. If you are a regular reader, you know of my chronic headaches, and my trigeminal neuralgia diagnosis, one that has been a source of contention as far as cause and treatment, oh and the quality of life issue when over zealous neurologists want to prescribe every ugly drug known to mankind.
So, I’d sought a second opinion, one that left me stunned by asking me for a leap of faith, one that began weaning me off of three of the drugs that have for the most part controlled the nasty awful pain that has ruled the last three years of my life.

That’s where I’ve been. Happy news though! Mom’s doing fine. Fears aside, she thanked me in the end for caring for her and for easing her fears by forcing her to get her goose egg checked out. Alls well for now. For now.
My new neurologist, one who has practiced at Cleveland Clinic (I guess they are top dog for Neurology in the country) and who turns out, has me almost off my drugs, only receiving physical therapy on my cervical area, pinpointing my pain from that area and the pressure of crimping the nerve that runs along the very base of your skull. Cool.
A new baby entered the picture. My step daughter (I hate to use the step word, she is in fact, my daughter through my husband) had her second child, a granddaughter again for my husband and myself. Welcome Lillian Grace – otherwise known as Lily. A tiny beautiful bundle at 6 lbs, 12 ozs. Compact at 17 inches long. Here I am the day she was born by cesarean section, Grandma ran to the hospital after work to smooch those baby cheeks.

Grandma and Lily

I’d like to say I’ll work harder at keeping up my blog – that is until life grabs me by the back of my baggy ass jeans and lands me far far away from my PC. (I’ve lost a few more glorious pounds! I’m down about 25 total now, hurrah!!!!)
Happy Hump Day everyone!

Friday, September 18, 2009

Good News! and some Really Random crap.

Good news folks! I'm not dead!
It's beens so long since I posted (august 26th? what is that about?)

But sad to say....Patrick Swayze, RIP. Mary Travers from Peter, Paul and Mary....Gone but not Forgotten. and you know they say that deaths come in 3's, well, now I'm on a watch. Who will it be next?
Husband inserted here, says doesn't Ted Kennedy count? I think the time gap puts him with some other threesome, but well, I'm not the expert on this phenom and I could of course be wrong. Anyone with thoughts here?

More good news. I am happy to report that I have now lost 22 lbs! Yes, all the whining I did last year, about my inability to lose even 5 lbs. to get into a dress for a wedding makes me crazy at myself. I didn't want to admit I was helpless to lose weight on my own. Helpless is key here. Anytime I've thought that I really didn't want to "admit" something, I've consistently been "helpless" to do something. When I choose to look at all possibilities and admit my vulnerabilities, I'm much, much more successful at attaining my goal. This has applied in all aspects of my life. Must be a life lesson. Hmph.
Losing the weight drops me down a few WONDERFUL sizes, clothes feel better, I feel better and life is great. I'm more prone to exercise, because I feel better. I'm giving random 20 minutes here and there to use my eliptical machine and Hey, exercise is exercise! Seems to work.
*I made so much fun of Weight Watchers, but folks, it works, it's easy, and if you stick with it, it easily becomes a way of life and the pounds fall off. Enough said. If you are reading this, and toying with a few extra pounds, investigate it. You will be surprised at how easy it is, and how attainable your goals will be. And, it does give you grins at how cliche it is, makes you feel like you are part of a wicked inside joke.

Hey, any of you looking at your crappy co-workers now and wondering if you too will be subject to work place violence? After reading the account of the poor lab researcher who was strangled by her lab techy guy co-worker at makes me raise a brow at some of my Not So Friendly sorts at the work place.
I'm just saying. Can't be too cautious. Seriously, put that syringe down I say.

Another thing that makes me shudder. Kenye West. (ohhh, did I spell it wrong? I'm fearful of this clown with a microphone, who may interrupt this blog because of it)
What the hell? I've never seen someone so full of himself and so utterly crazy all at the same time. Shame on any of you who promotes this jackass.
Speaking of jackasses, anyone hear of any news on Jon of the former "and Kate Plus Eight" news? I don't care too much what else is said, but he's an ass.
Next season on Survivor: Jon Gosselin and Kenye West. Yeah, now that'd be entertainment.

This is my birthday weekend. I'd like to thank the networks - all for airing your season premieres in this next week! Like a present to Jackee nearly Every. Night. Thank You! (add a smiley here)

Well, that's all folks, all the time I'm allowed in my busy schedule, which is really one of the main reasons why I've not posted. That and the media deluge of H1N1 news that has our patient's and the medical profession trying to calm them in a controlled frenzy. Here's what I say to all of you. Wash Your Hands. Don't go out if you think you are sick. Drink plenty of water and take care of yourself.
oh, and get a flu shot. M'kay?

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Customer Service Award-and the Award Goes To...

There is one thing that perturbs me, drives me bonkers in fact and that is poor customer service. I've always been in service related jobs and providing quality customer service has always been my goal. It is not always the goal of others in service related industries, mostly when I am the customer.
This story is one of good ones.

Awhile ago I bugged my loved ones to purchase a gift for me that would satisfy one of my dreams. That of owning an above average digital camera, so that I could preserve the family memories that mean so much to me. They generously bought me my beloved Nikon D40 SLR camera. I snap more photos than normal, so much to the annoyance of that family. (a collective sigh, as you may KNOW what I mean)

I started uploading the photos on to my hard drive, shocked at the amount of space it consumes. So I made another purchase, an external hard drive to store the photos on. I carefully moved archived photos onto the drive, every smile, every fond family gathering, vacation, wedding and newborn to toddler stage has been carefully cataloged and stored there.
Last week I uploaded some recent photos for work to my drive, and noticed that the drive was no longer recognized by my computer. I fiddled with everything I could fiddle with. I unhooked the drive and rebooted. I opened the tower of my computer and disconnected thing-a-ma-bobs and thing-a-ma-jigs and memory cards and you name it. Using my powerful can of air I blew out every conceivable opening of dust and suspected trouble makers. Still no connection. I connected the drive into another unrelated power outlet, noticing then that the light did not come on the power adapter. "Simple fix", I thought.
I returned to the site of the original purchase. Target. They told me that they no longer sold the hard drives, and that they didn't carry such power adapters either. ( funny, I only had bought this about 8 months ago) I was to call the manufacturer, Western Digital. I searched the net, found Western Digital's web site also noticing that they no longer carried my make and model, the power adapters didn't make the shopping list either. I phoned WD, and after a long while on hold spoke with a customer service rep who in a monotone flat voice told me that the adapter was out of stock, I should check back in a few weeks to see if they carried it then. Maybe yes, maybe no. She really couldn't direct me either way.
Panicked slightly, I thought maybe the Geek Squad at Best Buy could help me. Off to Best Buy, where a slightly geeky guy shook his head and said, sorry you are out of luck. I asked if there was a way to retrieve my picture files off the drive, and without even looking at me he said, No, sorry you're out of luck.
Dead end.
Sunday, while I was off to meet my daughter at the local cinema, I arrived early so I thought I'd go into the nearby strip mall and ask around at Radio Shack. The guy at Radio Shack listened to my story intently, and when I drew in my last breath, said, No problem, just buy this hard drive casing, pop your old drive out of the casing and snap it into the new one and you should be good to go.
I excitedly brought in my broken hard drive the next day and they opened up the casing, snapped the new one into place in no time flat.
I re-hooked the drive and still couldn't find it on my directory. I returned to the Radio Shack guy, thinking I was a sucker, but no, he just had to tighten up the screws inside as the drive had some extra space and had become loose with the movements it took for me to wedge it in between my printer and the walls of my computer case.
Sure enough, this time it works! There are all my precious files and folders carefully named. The guys were awesome! Polite and wonderful...they didn't even blink an eye!

Here's a shout out to Radio Shack. I couldn't believe the great customer service they provided, not only by making the right move...but by not just looking over my head and telling me that I was screwed. Thanks Target, thanks Western Digital, thanks Best Buy with your fancy Geek Squad, all who really didn't care if retrieved my photos or not. They didn't offer options, they said, sorry you are screwed. But Radio Shack cared enough to offer a solution, an affordable solution, and they did all the work. They didn't just sell me the equipment and send me off to install it on my own. They popped open the box and installed it all for no extra cost.

Just thought I'd take a minute to congratulate them, to let others know. Hey go take a look at your local Radio Shack, they have all sorts of gadgets and the customer service was right on!

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

I'm OFF work, of COURSE it's Raining!

For those of you who read my blog regularly, you know the angst that I have over taking a day off of work, only to have whatever my plans are-dashed to the low, because of rain. It's been like that for over a year, and frankly I don't know what I did to piss of Mother Nature but she's one angry woman!
I took off yesterday to take my mom to the neurologist. Rain. Overcast cloudy skies. Humid.
Today, I awoke to find that same scenario, how lovely.
I think you still can sunbathe in the overcast clouds. I'll let you know later.

So, I went to pick Mom up, as always quite a few hours early, in case she needs assistance. Found in her robe, she was sitting at the kitchen table reading the newspaper and lamenting over an obituary that she was reading. Yet another peer, her cousin had died. My mother years ago gave into a self imposed exile away from most of her friends and relatives. She was then very mobile, and still set in her ways. She found company in her sister, eleven years her senior who lived a few blocks away from her. They shopped together and crabbed at each other and as they grew older still, they watched t.v., each in their perspective living rooms, as they talked on the telephone, each television tuned into exactly the same program. My aunt was really my mom's only peer. She had us, her children and grandchildren, but no one else her own age group to socialize with. My aunt died several years ago, my mother misses her every day, and often speaks of her as though she has not passed. "I wonder what Mary Ellen would think of this, or that".
I don't remember ever meeting this cousin of hers that passed away. She went on and on about this cousin's family, her mother and father, sisters and brothers, she proclaimed I looked most like her. (???? don't know where that is coming from - I'm really a clone of my mom, with a tidge of my father in the mix) Anyway, they were never really close, in fact I think the last time my mom saw this woman was at least 34 years ago. Still, my mom recanted days gone by when her father was alive and all the relatives would get together on a Sunday afternoon to visit his mother, her grandmother who was ill. The grand kids would sit on the stoop outside of the home, and the adults went in to visit. This is the most she could conjure up about her relationship with this cousin. (My mother's father died in a car accident when Mom was 10 - she's 79 now)

My mother about 7 or 8 years old.

Seems her memory is fine. She talked alot yesterday about all the women in her family. How they really weren't nice women. (No? Really? These were her words, I swear!) They were unforgiving and mean to each other. Not my direct grandmother mind you, but ALL of her other sisters, my mother's aunts. Some had such tattered relationships with their daughters, that the pairs didn't speak even up til the mother died. My mom claims that there were alot of "secrets", such as the alcoholism of a husband, whom one aunt kicked out of the house and she went on to raise 5 kids on her own. Tsk, Tsk. But the rest of the family excluded her, because you just didn't "do that" in those days. That same woman walked 4 or 5 blocks every week to the cemetary to visit his grave after he died. Of course, all this was from my mother's perspective, and her perspective was that of a child or young teenager - judging from the way my mother behaves now, and come to think of it, pretty much all her life - is a much self centered existance. She hardly really knows the REAL story because she isn't paying that much attention to detail, so busy she is thinking about her own self. (this too straight from my mother's mouth). Seems that all my female relatives had issues with thier relationships. My mother came from a long line of them.
All in all, it was a good visit. All I did was listen. Listen and think that these are the last years of my mother's life. Lonely and self absorbed, her world is very small. Too small if you ask me, but I think that is pretty much all she can handle now.

We went to the neuro visit, and the doc examined her, asked her many questions. She gave my mother what is known as a Mini Mental Status Exam (MMSE) which is a variety of questions about the here and now (date, day of the week, year, etc.) and then some simple subtraction problems, (take 7 from 100, then 7 from 93 and so on) and my mom did remarkably ok! She paused a little on the math. She asked my mother to repeat three simple, table, chair and then later to use them in a sentence. Mom stumbled a little on those, she tried to use them in a sentence-before the doctor asked for them to be used in a sentence. I knew she was up to something, because she remembered this test from last year's exam and had some anxiety about it. Well, the doctor was very pleased, told us that mom is doing so well, she is right back where she was before she had her stroke four years ago! There was minimal rejoicing. She reduced my mother's medication, a medication that prevented seizures because she felt it could be causing some of the dizziness that my mother claims to have.
I took her home, making sure that she remembered to reduce her meds and sat a while longer with mom. That's when she showed me a little notebook she'd been studying. She'd written the answers to the math questions on it. 93, 86, 79,72,65. She had a written sentence using apple, table and chair in it. My mom was CHEATING on her mini mental status exam!

My mother - Teen Idol

I think she's a pretty coniving cookie! Jeeze!
All in all it certainly floated her boat getting all the answers right and showing off that she's in control. Good for her I guess. Still when I left her, she was all absorbed in what she was going to fix for dinner, and wondering if Antique Roadshow as going to be a re-run tonight, she seemed sad and lonely to me. Maybe it's just me.

Friday, August 14, 2009

I Know it’s Friday – But Can’t We Just Get on with It and Start the Weekend? Edition #1

Sorry for the long title. It’s almost noon on Friday and like so many others, I just want to go home and start my weekend. (and get paid for it, I suppose, come on, YOU do too!)

So, here I sit instead, glued to my desk. I’ve typed minutes to department meetings held a week ago. {yawn}
I’ve done a small chart review on medical charts our new doctor (yeah! We replaced that crazy Grampa Doctor from a few posts back-FINALLY) {double yawn}
I’m not really looking forward to my "6 point lunch". No real pizzazz or flavor, it will just keep me from gnawing a limb off until dinner. (oh, yes, for you crazy WW cult members, I’ve lost 15.4 lbs. Hoo HA, without exercise I might add, because I screwed up my fragile little spine – but well I promise to start an exercise program as soon as fall hits) Still lunch will be a bore.

The day is moving like a turtle. (when a turtle does not equal a turd poking out one’s anus…sorry to gross you out, that just popped into my head, the fact that I’ve heard that expression of a turtle before…this turtle is just a plain slow moving creature)
Enough, I'm off point as usual.
Now I sit with a pile of papers and articles I’ve collected trying to create a Power Point presentation on a subject to use at an in-service I must give to the staff. A subject and in-service that most of the staff here have already been trained on time and time again and still don’t care enough to absorb. Lucky for you all it’s not CPR! Ha! That one they “get”…
This is a boring subject, full of acronyms, legislature, forms (yes, we all hate forms) and such.
There, I’ve said the dreaded word. Can;t folks just pay attention?

I’ve not got a lot planned for the weekend, just swimming in 90 degree weather and catching some sun. I’m off on Monday (it’ll rain, it always does! See my previous posts to prove it!) but I have to take my mom to the doctor…that in and of itself is worth a blog post or two. I usually take something and lie down for awhile afterwards. But no, this time I’m going to take something before hand, then be prepared. So, with that in mind…can anyone post bail for me on Monday?

I’d like to see the movie “Time Traveler’s Wife”, which comes out this weekend. I read the book and it’s MARvelous! Any takers?
See, I'm living large for the weekend, and it's not even started yet.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

I'm BAAACK, hope you've missed me!

Seems I've been MIA from my blogging for so long. Sad to say, I took a week's vacation from work, only to have hurt my back. So, most of the vacation the week before last was spent in physical therapy and lying with ice on my sore spots. Then when I returned to work, I had therapy three nights that week along with trying to get some junk together so that my daughters and I could host a garage sale. (no blogging time available) Garage sale over, whew, when I returned to work on Monday, yesterday, I was only there a few hours and started feeling chilled to the bone. Complete with nausea and body aches, I started running a fever. I went home barely able to keep my eyes open. I crashed on the couch, hot/cold all afternoon, sleeping and tossing/turning to keep up with the body aches. The temp outside was a muggy 80 some degrees and sometime in the afternoon, the electricity went off. I kept hearing a beeping sound, from far off in the distance, when through the fog of my fever induced sleep, I realized it was the battery of our smoke detector shouting out to me that there was no power.

The afternoon turned into muggy hot evening, and the power didn't come back until about 9:30 at night. I wouldn't have known, so deeply I was sleeping, but my wonderful husband came to check on me, forcing me to take some acetaminophen for the fever and turn on the T.V.

I didn't go to work today, for fear that I wouldn't recover if I didn't truly get some rest.

Seems I'm always sick or broken some how. It gets pretty discouraging. Seems I spend more time recuperating than I do living life. No matter how hard I try, no matter how healthy I try to behave! I hate being off work!
There's always so much to catch up on when you return.
But, on the brighter side, I've been able to blog hop and read some of my favorite blogs! Susan had a heartwarming post about mother/daughter relationships. Seems that I'm not the only mom who has shed tears at the tough times parent/child relationships have. That makes me hopeful!
Also, the eye candy my daughter Sarah provided made me chuckle. As always, Susannah at Petunia Face cracked me up, although I was sad to see that I was left off her blog roll. (I bet that was an over sight, no scratch that I hope that was an over sight.)

Blogging is a fun past time, but sometimes it's hard to keep up the reading and posting and all. I truly enjoy the peek into everyone's life and love when they peek into mine!
Here's to everyone having a great Tuesday! Sick or well!

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Memorabilia or junk?

When I was a little girl, I used to ask my mother what was I like when I was a baby? She sometimes told me a funny story or two, she sometimes said she couldn't remember.
It was the "couldn't remember" part that bugged me. That and the fact that I had only a handful of pictures of myself to chronicle the first 7 years or so of my life. No cute newborn pictures, in fact the first picture they took of me was when I was around 7 or 8 months old.
My older brother, well, that's a different story. They had pictures of their first born (natch). His baby book was filled out for a few years...mine had my basic first days of life information. Date of birth, weight, family tree...that's about it.

I have always been accused of being a "pack rat". I saved letters from my pen pal, kept flowers from an old boyfriend pressed in a book. I saved ticket stubs and match books and all sorts of memorabilia but I eventually let go of those memories and tossed all of that stuff.
To this day, I struggle with organized clutter. Oh, my home is neatly decorated, the clutter controlled into a artful montage. But still I have a hard time letting go of gifts, clothes and pretty things. So when my daughter suggested a garage sale and I told her I didn't have much to contribute she rolled her eyes. "I can go into your kitchen right now and fill a box with things you could sell or give away". I began to purge.

My oldest daughter and my youngest daughter (my son is the middle child) came over on Monday night with the attempt to tackle the trunk where all the memento's of their childhood (and mine) has been carefully tucked away. I saved my diaries from 5th, 6th and 7th grade. They conjured up many laughs from them, and quickly they tossed it into the garbage. They tossed all the Front Page newspapers that I kept for them, telling of the new Princess across the ocean and then years later of her death. They laughed until they had tears in their eyes over the stories that they wrote in first and second grade, of the lists that they mailed off to Santa and of the funny pictures that their brother drew, complete with date and age marked in the corner by me, the thoughtful watchmom of their youth. I saved everything, but apparently I wasn't alone, as there was also some momentos that their grandmother (on their father's side) had saved of his youth and babyhood, stuff he forgot to take when our marriage split up. Probably stuff he forgot about, stuff that didn't matter anymore. Never fear, I'll save it here! and then I did. All to preserve their memories. I thought that they would thank me someday. I thought that they would relish this junk and be thankful for the reminders. So that one day, when I forgot, the junk could tell the stories that I could not.
They tossed it all away. The locks of hair, the misspelled stories and poems, the home made Mother's Day cards and the Front Page news of John Lennon's death.
I was beside myself. I fought back silly tears. I felt as though I had been working on a very large gift that took me twenty years to complete only to find out that the recipient thought it ugly junk. I choke up just typing about it.
I let the trunk and it's content go out to the garbage pick-up.
Assuaging my hurt feelings, my husband reminded me gently, "who did you save those memories for my dear? You or the kids?" I thought about it. I think it was a little of both. I think I wanted a reminder in case I forgot. In case I forgot their sweet words, in case I forgot that twenty plus years goes by so fast. But you don't forget. I still see their Kool-Aid smile faces and their sticky hands when I look at their 30 plus faces. I still hear their sweet little voices inside their 29 year old deep ones. The memories have not been hidden away. I can conjure them up if I try. My husband tells me to let that junk "go". Let it go and live in the now.

How many of you hold on to those kinds of things? How many of you keep junk around as keepsakes? How many of you think I should have scooped up stuff and held onto it awhile longer? Maybe when they are older still they might wish they would have it back?

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Scary Places to Visit on a Friday Night

Did you ever think how normal places you may visit can be considered the scariest depending on your frame of mind?
Take last night. Friday night, ending a miserable work week, the prelude to my week of vacation. A vacation just from work, where people were bugging me. (seriously buggin me)

I had an order for Physical Therapy clutched in my hot little numb hand. Left work and the whiny incompetents behind anticipating relief from the back pain and the start of my vacation.

Let's just say that the demeanor of the tiny little soft spoken physical therapist was a sham. She led me through a chamber of horrors on her narrow little exam table. Pushing soft tissue in an ever so slow pressure that resulted in little spasms that made my shoulder jump every six seconds ALL ON IT'S OWN! Cool, way cool, but then it felt as though she were ripping my spine from inside it's muscular hideaway. Push, twist, prod and release. Until the knots that were once my twisted ligaments and muscle were now fighting back with the twitches and jumps. The numbness went away temporarily. She performed deep heat ultrasound and some more advanced pressure in key locations on my neck, trapezoidal area and lower spine.
Hey! Does this spell R.E.L.I.E.F???
Well, it did. For awhile. Then she taped my spine. Yeah, TAPED it. From my neck to midback, two strips running either side of my spine. This is to remind my posture to stay straight, to remind me to sit up and toss my shoulders back to relieve that pull from the adhesive. Weird feeling. I felt as if I were a young Joan Kusak in 15 Candles (remember her character - the girl at the dance/drinking fountain, the one with the scoliosis brace??? Loved that movie - saw it 400 times in the 80's and 90's)
So, with my nerdy posture, I scheduled 100 or so more appointments (yes, even on my vacation) because my back is truly a knotted mess and has been for a few years. Years I put off dealing with it, because of the more pressing pain the TN gave to me. (Are you getting the fact that I'm wearing a trans dermal pain patch - um, I should be feeling NO pain, and yet that back pain has broke through....must be kinda bad pain, I guess)

I decided after I left to go to the grocery store on my way home. That way I wouldn't have to disturb any pool time or day trip I would make on my vacation with annoying trips to the store.
I don't know why my car turned into Super Walmart, but it did. Convenience I suppose.
Let me just say that Super Walmart on a Friday night after 6 o'clock is truly a mecca for the unknown.
I saw a young mother with a too tight tank top showing her rubber tire of belly fat over the top of her too tight Daisy Dukes who had blue hair. Well, it was died blue over the already black hair that her gene pool gave to her (I assume). I saw a midget. I saw a Marine. I saw a Hindu Princess, complete with scarves and veils and little dangled coins lining the edges of her floor legnth wrap. I saw a few Farmer In The Dell type men, with their overalls and t-shirts. I spied a few over 55 yrs. old men with gray streaked, long, long pony tails, waiting in line reading US Weekly. While I pondered over the grapes (green or red? you choose..) my cart was pushed aside by a young Asian family who at my count had seven children (Jon & Kate wanna-be's) all of whom wanted to jump into my cart. With my strange posture, I fit right in. Ahhh, Super Walmart, the only store where I can dress like Halloween 24-7 and not feel out of place.
Truly scary.
The rest of my evening I spent fighting the urge to slump. This in going to be really interesting!

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Scootch Over You Inconsiderate Boob! I need to rest.

I hurt my lower back. Probably staining the deck in anticipation for the 4th of July party that we were having.
It rained. We used the garage instead.

Don’t you hate it when you hurt your back (lower back) and EVERYTHING you do hurts?
Hurts to sit, to stand, to lay down and when you reach for something, OH, OUCH!
When I have a hurt, then I get cranky.
I’m moaning today because of inconsiderate people. Mostly work people. My tolerance (related to my achey back) is low for inconsiderate people today.
1. Install a roll of towel paper YOURSELF people! Instead they come to find me, their germy, wet hands dripping on my desk. “Jackee, there is no paper towel in the staff lounge”.

2. Whoever used the last of the copy paper – fill the darn machine will you chumps?
Why fry the coffee pot when there is a minuscule amount of old coffee in it? Either turn off the pot or make a new pot!

3. Where are all the forks? We are fortunate enough to have a well stocked kitchen for our staff lounge. I used petty cash to buy a place setting for 8 and some odd extra stainless steel forks for the kitchen. THEY ARE ALL GONE! Not in the dishwasher, not in the cabinet drawer. Just gone. Please don’t eat the forks folks.

4. Last summer I loaned a co-worker (one that is now my boss) a few odd books in the Janet Evanovich series of books about Stephanie Plumb…I loaned her # 6 and #7 out of FIFTEEN. She told me today that she threw them away. Is there a lesson here or what?

I could go on being cranky and listing all the other things (injustices really!) that have been on my last nerve today, but I’ll reserve my thoughts for better, more positive ones.
Sorry it’s been so long since I’ve blogged. I miss you guys and hope you’ve missed me! I’d lie and say that I’m really too busy anymore to blog, but that’s not the case, I’m just lazy these days of summer. Seriously, if I do sit down, I conk out! Wake me from the dead type conked out. I hope your 4th was eventful and safe. I hope that everyone is watching their diets (I’m down 8.4 lbs. !!!! Watch out Valerie Bertonelli!!)
Hope you all aren’t near as cranky as I am today.

Saturday, June 27, 2009

Finger Lickin Fun

My daughter, Sarah and I recently experienced our first book signing at Border's on Michigan Avenue in the heart of Chicago. We raced through gnarled rush hour traffice to purchase the new book (fifteen in the series) written by Janet Evanovich. We raced...only to reach a line that, about 500 fans deep, wrapped around several floors of Borders. (Borders is my "happy place"..all the books, packaged so brightly, the titles jumping out at me - all the trinkets, the displays the signs marked 30% off!!!, I love it!)

We waited in that line, some 3 and 1/2 hours.
Where We saw some interesting sites...

We made lots of new friends...all of us bonding with our first book signing experience

"Hi, guys!!! Rememer to write us an email or check out our URL's!" {we exchanged urls} They were lots of laughs.

This lady kept herself busy. She balanced the book on her head. Perhaps she's one of those paranormal types, able to absorb the text through the bookbinding and her cranium straight into her memory banks. Nah, she was just bored.

This is Sarah, happily waiting in line. Doesn't she look happy? This is a good thing. Sarah's been going through some tough times. I was glad to partipate in some fun with Sarah that kept her occupied.
Love you baby!

Sarah and the prized book.

Finally I spied a clue.

Janet's can of Diet Coke.....we must be getting near!!!!

TA! DA!!

Waiting in line didn't compare obviously to the fatigue that Ms. Evanovich felt after signing 600+ books. The gracious lady had a new foot fracture, from a signing the night before and was obviously tired beyond words by the time it became our turn for the shot. She turned and smiled for the camera, and we were thrilled.

Thanks Sarah, for including me on your adventure!

Monday, June 15, 2009

Temperature is Toasty

This is not my swimming pool.

It's not even close.

{my pool is somewhat cleaner - even after being tucked away all winter}

But soon my pool water will be bubbly warm with our new pool heater! Thanks to my wonderful husband and handyman who installed our new gas heater under the deck to keep us toasty on those warm days with a mild breeze. The ones that have a small bead of sweat gathering on our faces and lull us all into thinking a dip in the pool would be refreshing, but alas, even though the temperature outside SAYS 80 degrees, the pool water is a leg numbing, ball shriveling 53 degrees. Lips turn blue, fingertips gnarl in the cold and all bones become achy.

The pool heater was a good choice considering it's Northwest Indiana and we could still be in for snow.

Yeah, I know it's June, but we still say "It could snow", just so that we don't "spit into the wind" and nah, nah, nah, some god of snowfall to ascend upon us with swirls of the white glorious frozen flakes that are better reserved for Thanksgiving and Christmas.

Back to the pool. Aren't you jealous? I KNOW!

It makes all the work worthwhile to have some pool time. Fun in the sun, swimming, sunbathing and cooking out with the family!

Good times.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Dr. Grampa

We are down a provider at our practice which means that we contact a service and Rent a Doc. This traveling physician’s are usually doctors looking for permanent placement, or are retired or they are in-between fellowships looking to score a little cash between gigs. We’ve had a few while we are interviewing most of the Midwest for available primary care Family Practice provider.
They’ve all been “fun”.
Some have been very short, cranky men, with bad personalities, and bad hair styles and really bad bed side manner.
Some come straight from the prison health care system, that guy was a real joy! Called all our patient’s “drug seekers”, was rude to parents and told stories instead of reviewing patient’s symptoms. He lasted about three weeks.
The new one the agency sent to us is a seasoned practitioner (he is older than your Grandpa!) he has a nice bedside manner, is a great diagnostician and is pleasant. His handwriting is legible and he’s got experience in geriatrics, pediatrics and surgery.
The downside? He’s got old people’s disease. He loves to hear himself talk.

He takes forever to complete an appointment, mostly because he’s telling a story – and not one from this century. Propped up on the edge of the exam table, he’s trying to engage an 18 year old into talking about high school, when the poor kid has been in the exam room about 45 minutes for his refill of allergy medicine and is planning his bolt out of the door.

I usually eat lunch around 1:00, slightly after most of the staff has already finished with their lunch. I take my lunch, peppered with a variety of Weight Watcher approved items, and the newspaper and relax over the next 30 to 40 minutes secluded in the confines of the break room.
Not today my friend! Cornered by our resident Grandpa Doctor, I spent the entire lunch period looking engrossed in whatever the hell he was talking about. Most of it didn’t really make sense to me. He slipped subconsciously from one subject to the next without taking a pause, without wrapping up one thought or the next opinion. He spoke of his wife in the first person, lovingly as if I knew her well; as if she and I were old friends, just having had lunch together yesterday. I’m not sure where his wife is, I’m not even sure that she is still alive.
I didn’t ask.

What causes me to post about this topic? It's that I see myself getting there. I see my mom as already a resident at the Chatter On about Nothing at All clubhouse. Talking to this older gentleman is much like following a conversation with my mother. You just nod and smile, pause and look interested. This too will be me someday. Heck, I’m doing it now with my blog!

(When you wake up, click on that X in the right hand corner, shut the lights off and go to bed)

I’ll try to post something slightly more interesting tomorrow, until then I apologize for droning on.

Sunday, June 7, 2009

"If I only had no pain" Sung to the tune of "If I only had a brain" from the Wizard of Oz.

It began in 2005 with what I thought was a severe sinus infection.
I had a semi stuffy nose, intense pain in my sinus cavities (all of them!) and my teeth and the roof of my mouth were very painful and my EAR, oh, god, my inner ear was throbbing and on fire with pain, keeping me awake at night.

Working at a clinic has it's perks. One of them is "hallway medicine". It begins with "hey doc, I have a sore throat, (ear ache, head ache, sinus fill in the affliction) and ends with the doctors humbled opinion and a prescription. For free. As an administrator, I would have to discourage that practice, because you really do not receive the best health care advice, or a complete examination or the undivided attention of the doctor...but it happens all day long and everyone is guilty of it. So, in 2005 with all my symptoms and all my pain, I could barely lift my head, my eyes were starting to puff up, and before I took off 1/2 day, I thought I'd better get an antibiotic for the "sinus infection " gone awry. The doctor looked at my chart, and then up at me, "I'm not convinced that this is a sinus infection. You have come to me once a month for the past 6 or 7 months, I think it's time you go see an ENT" The appointment was a week away. The ENT took one look at my, grossly exaggerated features swollen and gray with pain and claimed that I did not have a sinus infection, he suspected something much more sinister. He suspected Trigeminal Neuralgia, something I had not heard of. EVER. He said the absence of certain diagnostic positive exams were the key to diagnosing this syndrome. (For example: I had no fluid in the ears or in the nasal cavity. No fever. No drainage down my throat, no cough, no sign of bacterial or viral infection) A CT of the brain confirmed it. Yeah, there was nothing in there - go ahead, I'll pause for the jokes.

There were a series of appointments with my neurologists and family doctors, who tried a variety of mind numbing painkillers and seizure medications (that's how they control the inflammation of the nerve ending - with seizure medications) and appointments with fancy doctors at University of Chicago. (unimpressive and expensive) I had serious complications from a mixture of drugs that actually paralyzed my right side one afternoon, and I've had drug failures. I've tried homeopathic massage, I've tried diet restrictions. I'd try voodoo and black magic if I thought I could trust the caregiver! Mostly I sat in a recliner with a bag of frozen corn on my neck and head waiting for the pain to subside or the Darvocet to kick in. Oh, I could take stronger meds, like Dilaudid, which I did for awhile, but then I'm all groggy and dopey. I can't really function like that, go to work, carry on a conversation, blog...
The residual "gift" that TN has left me is mind blowing migraines. Cluster headaches that last for weeks or months. Every day I open my eyes to head aches that get worse as the day grows long.

This past Friday, I'd been suffering with a migraine for 4 weeks, and the doctor I work with who manages my pain, convinced me to give the pain patch another try. I had a rather unsuccessful turn of events (called near overdose) during the first year I had this syndrome and I never wanted to visit that again. But she ordered a lower dosage and thought I'd have better pain control 24-7, with it.
Let me tell you!!!! After two days on it, I am a new person! I feel well again! I'm a little wobbly and wiggy at times (usually before I eat - seems that it metabolizes better with food in your belly than without) but other than that I'm pain free! Side affects are: snoring and talking in my sleep - I'm sleeping like I'm dead to the world!
I love you tiny little patch. This here's an ode to the patch! Here's to a weekend painfree! I'm actually able to do things instead of lay in that chair!

More on the affects of chronic pain on you and those around you at another time, another blog post...

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Crap, crap and then some more crap

Sometimes did you ever notice how much effort you spend on this internet and do nothing?
I know you do!

I keep thinking it's Thursday today, getting all excited thinking tomorrow is Friday, why, I slap my little palms together getting all warm and fuzzy another week under my belt, the weekend upon me and
It's Wednesday.
Boring old Wednesday.

On another note:
I've got no real good reason not to exercise now. All the T.V. shows are in re-runs, I've got some real sexy (well, they are sexy on someone, possibly) black yoga pants and new running shoes, and about an hour to kill each night before the Man returns back to this castle. But do I? Well, that'd be a no. Or a sometimes.
I lack encouragement, when encouragement equals a shirtless, Hugh Jackman-type personal trainer.

And then on yet another note: Take a look over there at the right hand margin. See that Twitter deal? Does it make me look younger? Does it make my butt look bigger? Do you think I'll be able to keep up with it when I can't even keep up with my blog? Do you want to pay me to do so? I think not Jose!!!! hee hee. Yet another time sucker to keep me from exercising.
Carpal Tunnel here I come!

To those of you who dare to care about my WW success story as told on E! entertainment....I've lost and kept off 5 lbs.
and I leer at food like the vamps from Twilight. My eyes glow and all, seriously.

Monday, June 1, 2009

Awesome award, thank you very much

My daughter apparently thinks I’m awesome! Good, that’s what moms live for.
(or at least I do) So here's one award for me...and one for YOU!
So she challenged me to this meme, and although it appears to be easy, it was hard to do! Name seven things that are awesome about you.
Apparently I’m awesome at some things, but blogging isn’t one of them, as I have hard a hard time keeping up with my blog lately. (mostly due to personal things going on)

It’s hard to think of yourself as awesome.
Here are some things that are awesome aspects of me.

I make awesome soup and noodles.
I am an AWESOME bargain shopper. (love it, truly do)
I am awesome at arts and crafts.
I am awesome at sewing.
I am awesome at Canasta! There, that’s different!
I am an awesome Grandma!
I am an awesome letter writer. (correspondence is important)
Now, I'm nominating YOU....
and a few others, hope you all can participate!

Sunday, May 17, 2009

"Special Persons" Day at School - Invitation Only

So, we were invited by our 6 year old Granddaughter -the Little Miss- to attend "Special Persons" day at her grade school. I believe this is the day formerly known as Grandparents Day. Apparently, there are some who do not have grandparents who can attend, thus the day was renamed, Special Person day, you invite a special person in your life. Lots of gray hair attended, apparently all very special people.
She showed us all her papers hanging up on the walls of her classroom, we ate Dunkin Donut holes and Hawaiian Punch with the other attendees in the school gym. We got to see (pictured here) her sunflower seeds growing on the windowsill. Very special.

Here she is hugging her Papa, who was very happy to have been invited.
Then we were allowed to take her home with us. I had planned a wonderful afternoon, and typically as it does when I take a day off of work, it was pouring rain. Noah, smiling smugly from the Ark, was very happy. It poured through lunch, poured through our visit to two (count em 2)pet stores where we visited with all the puppies, guppies and spiders. It soaked our pant legs as we puddle hopped between parked cars, weaving our way to Barnes & Noble, where we spent a good hour or so reading (she's READING-in kindergarten, I can't believe how fast they grow up!!) books like Amelia Bedilia and The Hungry Caterpillar, along with the Berenstain Bears have a sleep over. Getting tired yet little one? Grandma was exhausted!
We went home, baked a cake and prepared dinner for Papa, which was spaghetti and corn on the cob. (?) She picked it out.
Long day. But the next day, I had also planned an outing to the local grade school that was having a Fun Fair. It's theme was outer space. They had the school decorated in alien stuff - whatever their interpretation of alien stuff was. Cute. She started out by getting her hair doused with glitter and pipe cleaners in a new "do" that was out of this world. We played bingo in the library, where winning meant you get to pick out all kinds of trinkets and candy. We proceeded to the gymnasium where there were carnival type games set up. Everyone was a winner, getting to choose a piece of candy just for playing, along with a poker chip with a 1, 2, or 5, or 10 on it, depending on how well you did on the game itself. Those poker chips were then redeemed in a classroom full of wonderful prizes. (Where wonderful equals dollar store stuff)
She was having a great time, winning prizes, trying her hardest, and then selecting suckers, because that is her favorite. They had a few blow up jumping things too, and as we stood in line to do an obstacle course in a inflatable jumpee, she spotted a costumed parent in a large bulldog outfit. (Bulldogs are the schools mascot) She totally freaked out, crying and sobbing, "I want to leave now Grandma".
I forgot how scared she was at Chuckie Cheese. I forgot she cried her way through Disney World.
Game over.
That's OK, we had fun anyway.

Later as we were making our way through the parking lot behind the school, we saw the "bulldog", head laying on the ground beside her, catching a smoke break out by the dumpster with her bulldog assistants. She waved sheepishly.

Monday, May 11, 2009

Car Kharma

I have always had a love/hate relationship with my car.

Today I hate it. (but shhhhhh, don't tell anyone, it hears you and reacts, I swear!)

Last week when the hubs was out fishing on a lake somewhere, bonding with other fish and fishermen, one of my turn signal lights went out. No prob.

Now I'm a resourceful woman. I can change a lightbulb, even a car lightbulb. I went to the auto parts store near work, gave the older cranky guy my make & model and he sold me two yellow bulbs. When I got home I popped the hood, right away pressing both of the palms of my hands to the sides of my cheeks, my mouth forming a large "O". Where the heck is the socket? I pleaded with my neighbor (who is known to be "car handy") to assist me in this tiny bulb change. He and I poked around under the hood, and were successful in changing the yellow bulb. But alas, I guess as far as the changing of the yellow bulb goes, one must also purchase and change the white ones too. Now, neither bulb worked. I had both my back turn signals, but neither of my front ones.
Safety was on my mind, but not in my car.
Immediately I cursed all the times when I had thought about buying a new car. Nothing major is wrong with my car, but it is paid for...and eleven years old...starting to loose it's sassiness...hey, it never had sassiness, that was just me, but the car had already had it's feelings hurt. It was striking out, baaaad car kharma. No matter how much I whisper "I'm sorry", the car refuses to give, even just a little. At eleven, the car is still emotionally immature and unforgiving.

So, yesterday, Mother's Day, my husband buys more bulbs and a flasher gizmo, assuredly to remedy the situation. He tinkered (he's really good at tinkering) and he pulled all kinds of stuff out and put the stuff back, and lo and behold. No turn signals. Neither front nor back, and although I have break lights, I regretfully inform you, I've been driving around today using the much revered Hand Signals.

My arm hurts.

I turned alot.

Each time I turned, I held my breath, risking the chance that the 17 year old new driver in the hot rod in front of me had glanced at the pages in the driver's manual that showed the hand turn signals. Please be a cautious reader.

In spite of my glamorous arm moves, I made it home with my dignity intact. Silently I mutter..."hurry home baby, and stop at Auto Zone first." I'm so glad my hubs is back. His handy self and his 15 bags of frozen fish come in handy around here.

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Nothing to Fear But Fear Itself

I didn’t buy my dog for protection, though he looks fierce and barks a large scary bark. I adopted my dog because he was a stray and needed a good home; he listened right away to my commands, didn’t pee on the furniture and didn’t eat the carpet. He loved me, my husband and my granddaughter from the minute I let him stay inside the house. You all agree that we tend to love things that love us – unconditionally – back. We admire their taste.

Casper as you can see from post below and from archived posts is totally black, a Chow/Shepard mix. He weighs in at about 70 lbs. and his bark is definitely worse than his bite. He is LOUD and very territorial. When dogs cross in front of our walk, he barks so loudly at them and very aggressively at them instilling fear in all of our neighbors and their children. I do not let him bark in the house otherwise he’d bark out the open windows and scare the crap out of everyone.
So, last evening, Casper and I were lounging sprawled all over the living room, me in my recliner, Casper at my slipper clad feet, when out of the darkness that is also known as the kitchen-without-the-lights-turned-on, a loud clatter and BANG! (even my adrenaline shot up a little) when Casper’s 70 lb. self jumped onto my lap for comfort.
Yes. 70. lbs.
You heard right.
Now, you know my husband has “gone fishing”, and this manor is being headed by the queen of the household while he’s gone, but that was just a little silly. I guess we kept Casper for his ability to make fertilizer in the backyard, or for being good at party tricks like Sit, Shake and Dance, but not for his ability to protect a fearful mistress. It was just the wooden door jam in the slider door falling.

Lucky for him I’m not so fearful. I’m enjoying my husband’s-away-the-wife-will-play time, by watching t.v., taking the dog for a walk, and although sticking to my points, (down 5 lbs. now) I’m kinda eating junk instead of dinner. I’ve not done all the things that I put on my list, like clean out drawers and closets, scrapbook, exercise and read a few books. Um no.
Tonight is Grey’s Anatomy.
Nuff said.

Saturday, May 2, 2009

Wo-man's Best Friend

What might be considered woman's best friend? In the dreamy romantic period of my life, I might have pointed to said husband and claimed him my best friend. Newly wed, caught up in doing just about everything together...ew, rose your glucose level just a tad bit now didn't I?
"I didn't mean it ARE my best friend". Crap, I've gotten myself into a pickle now - I'll have to work harder at being a good wife to make amends. To keep the hubby happy.

This week, I don't have to work at all . This week, I don't have to cook, to clean,to share the remote, share the bed even! I can fold the covers back like a little envelope and slide myself in at night, all tucked and neat. Not to be disturbed by the Tug-O-Blanket war that ensues each night (not caused by me at all, despite what HE says).
WHY is that you might ask? Did said husband finally catch on to the ruse that is Jackee, discovering her blunders unamusing and he did flee to parts unknown? Well, sorta.

t's his annual fishing trip, one shared with twelve other fishermen of the He-man Women hater's club that is also known as his Church Guys That Fish. I am left to my own devices.
{Pause for reaction}
HOOORRRRAAHHHH! I've spent the hours so far, blogging, eating weight watcher's bagels and started reading a new book. I've pet the dog, drank a pot of coffee and so far, so far, have not even got out of my nightgown. I promised Casper, the wonder dog, a jog down the street, after I get dressed of course. This will be all my time. To do what I WANT WITH NO INTERRUPTIONS!

So, to some, Wo-man's best friend, might be a topic chosen for entirely different albeit understandable reasons (like a charge card to enable shopping sprees, a new kitchen gadget, new "gadget", Ipod, or favorite purse even) mine is featured here.

The soulful eyes of man's best friend. In man's absence, becomes wo-man's best friend. I feel safe and protected, comforted and less lonely. He's a great listener and I trust his fashion judgement. He loves to exercise with me, to nap with me, and even sits aside my chair as I scrapbook. I think he'd like to give it a try, but without thumbs, he has a hard time with fine, detailed work.

We are off to start our week, An adventure without fish guts!

Thursday, April 30, 2009

You Capture {JOY}

Well, here it is - joy.
A part of the fun and "joyful" You Capture Challenge, JOY

One that I enjoyed doing, so ingrained into me that joy, with all it's complexity, means something different to every single one of us. Click on the link above to go to the site that originated this challenge and see the other photographers and their intrepretations of the theme JOY.

This is Savannah Rayne and her grandma - me (isn't that darling, that teeny tiny newborn baby smile? Could be gas, could be just an expression or movement, I prefer it to be a true grin, saved for her grandma)

Grandma was full of joy too...

JUST LOOK AT THESE SWEET FEETIES!!! Yep, kissing and smooching allowed.
I'm feeling the joy.
Now, go on over and give the other photogs a gander, go on you know you want to.
If you can tear yourself away from this darling pink bundle.

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

BAAAAD Blogger - Yes, that's me

I've been a baaaaad blogger.
I've not blogged so much in the past few weeks, like so many others I've been looking for inspirations, for unusual things to blog about, ANYTHING but blogging about the real me.

I've lost 2 lbs.
My husband is going away for the week on a annual men only, OHYES,IGET TOSLEEPDIAGONNALLYONTHEBEDANDEATPOPCORNANDGOODNPLENTYFORDINNER fishing trip!
I'll be lonely.
Perhaps I'll blog more.
I'll probably exercise more too!
I won a cool book from the link below.
I've been reading blogs, just not writing my own.
See, I've got nothing really interesting to say.
My daughter is walking in the Avon Walk for Breast Cancer. Won't you please leave her a donation? She walks for my dear friend Rochelle, who lost a long struggle with breast Cancer at a very young age. I should walk on her team too, and would, but who can raise the outrageous amount of donations JUST TO WALK! I beg of you, support this cause.
I'm making a delicious spaghetti sauce tonight for dinner, along with whole wheat angel hair pasta, I'm getting so healthy I could just puke. But this dieting-eating-healthy deal, needs balance, like, that's why they call it a balanced I'm eating some Good-n-Plenty right now.
My sauce has fake meat in it. Who knew that fake meat could be so tasty! It's Morningstar breakfast crumbles. Seasoned like breakfast sausage, it really is tofu tidbits that can be mixed with ground turkey or ground beef or added alone to spaghetti sauce to make a nutritious and yummy sauce. Not bad, not very fattening either. Filling too.
Farmers everywhere should love me, I've been hawking the glory of this fake meat for a few months now. I predict the soy market will go off the charts this growing season, so much chatter I've generated regarding this meat substitute. Go right now and try some. Sprinkle it on top of a pizza as "sausage", it's super that way.
Well, it's ready, and I'm ready to set the table, so keep reading folks. I promise to come up with crafty posts soon.

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Virgin Winner

I am a virgin winner. I enter every "win this" give-away on countless blogs that I follow, that I stumble upon, that I just lurk on and have yet to win anything.

The glorious give-away free reads blog has free give-aways and I have won a cool book. Can't wait. Will read it first thing it arrives. SWEAR!
Then I'll pass it on to my daughter, who'll read it on the car-ride home (she's like a speed reader, very very focused that one) and then she'll pass it on.
and so on,
and so on,
Happy Saturday everyone! Hope you get a chance to read and to enjoy the nice weather (if you have it in your parts!)

Thursday, April 23, 2009

You Capture-Letters

This week's You Capture Challenge was "Letters".
I said "hmmmm". And then armed with my fav camera, I set out to capture this task.
I did think (to myself, and not very loudly) WHY? Why letters Beth? But then, it's her challenge, and who am I to question this assignment. So, I did this. In honor of Earth Day, yesterday, and for my own need to re-cycle, re-use, and re-invent.
then this
T, is for Turtles. Everyone loves turtles. Even when they are just yard art.

Then, without purpose, I thought of "lmnop", you know, from the famous ABC's song....(often mispronounced by the under three set-merged into one "ellimentopee)

This sign, which I've had forever...has been hung in my home, kitchen and yes, bathroom for years. I love it. Seems I can't often escape the Lard that is there. Nuff said.

And, a shout out to the creator of You Capture herself, let's give a round of applause to Beth at I should be Folding Laundry....(the crowd roars!)
AGAIN, I say

next week, the topic is "Joy". Could be that I take photo's of my new granddaughter, born this day, April 23, 2009 - Savannah Rayne! Happy Birthday!

My family means everything to me.

Friday, April 17, 2009

Friday Fun

Hey all you book lovers, I found a book review sight, one that has a give away book too!
For all of us chick readers, she has some really good book reviews.

This will conclude the fun on my Fun Friday post.

P.S. I am wearing a pair of pants that are a size down from what I wore last week. Hurrah for those stupid WW points! It's not melting off, but it's coming off slowly. EVERYbody stand! Let's start a WAVE...

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Crossed Over

I've crossed over.

No gasping please, I'm not typing to you from the Great Beyond- ghost blogging, now what a concept, it's just that I realize that I've crossed over from one stage of life to another. Just another rift in the generational divide, and yep, I'm there.

Evidence: While shopping at Target, I approached a 20-something guy while looking through the rack of cd's. He has huge plugs of plastic in his ear lobes, not like earrings, just like plugs. I think: "hey bud, what did you want to go and do that for?", but I say nothing, mesmerized by his giant earlobes. Someday he can use it for an ear of corn holder.

Evidence: Easter Sunday Mass. My church is homey and informal. It's pretty liberal and progressive as far as Catholic churches go. I mean we clap during the Alleluia for crying out loud! My revelation? I wasn't dressed in poofy skirt and Easter bonnet by no means, but I wasn't wearing jeans and a hoodie! The family (mom, dad, three school aged children) in front of me had on hoodies and jeans. Jeans! There was a few baptisms. One a young mother, in a white blouse and JEANS on EASTER SUNDAY. I'm so like the church lady - passing judgement on thier clothing. Shame on me. I've crossed over.
I'm a stodgy middle aged mom/grandma with my own set-in-her-ways-not-shoving-them-down-your-throat-but-expressing-"concern" type way. OMG!

Evidence: I use finger quotes alot.

Evidence: I actually like green beans now.

WHAT happened to me?
Some stuff doesn't matter to me at all anymore. I hardly ever get my nose out of joint when I see dust on my t.v., forget and don't care to water my plants, watch all my t.v. shows including the 10 o'clock pm. news on channel 2, and I put on a sweater when I get chilled instead of a hoodie.
(the hood bothers the back of my hair)

I've crossed over. That's whats happened. (hey, remember Crossing Over, the television show starring John Edward, who was a tv psychic type guy who talked to the audience's dead relatives? Whatever happened to that bloke? I'm not English, am I allowed to use the word bloke?)
Anyways, I'm rambling on. This is a rambling post to say, I got nothing, mostly boring junk, but I didn't want you all to miss me so I hurried up an typed a post.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

You Capture Challenge-SPRING

This weeks photo challenge was titled Spring which would have been an easy subject had the weather cooperated with my need to capture the hope, the promise and essence of what spring represents to me. The spring depicted and that I have lusted after in Northwest Indiana since the last heavy snowfall and the last school closing, you too may know THAT SPRING. The one held out at an arm's length. I dub thee, NotSpringYet.

The day I brought home the bare stems of the daffodils that were sold through work to benefit the American Cancer Society’s Daffodil Days spring sale, I stuck the bunches in my purse dodging a rainstorm. The next morning after I had plopped them into a vase immersed in cool water, they all burst open, surprising me in the morning with their sunny bonneted faces. I had bought my mother a bunch too, and called her to see if she was met with the same sunny disposition with her bouquet. She was.

But the weather, OH the weather! While my happy little bunch basked in the early afternoon sun, yesterday’s rainstorm turned to plump and heavy snowflakes. I didn’t dare look outside. I avoided it. So instead of heading out to capture some outdoor springtime in my lens, I snapped the bouquet of promise in my living room as the afternoon sun peeked through those snowflakes and the slats of my wooden blinds.
I can't decide which one I liked the best. Which is your favorite?

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Wishful Irish Dancer

Every since I saw the stage show Riverdance a few weeks ago, I’ve been playing the CD we bought at the show. The music is lifting, gets my energy moving and my feet want to dance.
I can’t dance.
I don’t know how to tap, but I took years of ballet as a youth.
Wish as I might, my legs don’t want to flail around like those Irish dancers.
I’m not Irish.
I detest corned beef and cabbage.
But I kind of like sauerkraut, which is sour cabbage.
Potatoes? Take em or leave em.
Except chips. And dip.
My favorite color is green though.
But that doesn’t help with the dancing thing.
I don’t believe in leprechauns.
Have you seen one?
The dude on the box of Lucky Charms doesn’t count.
I do like Lucky Charms, especially the little marshmallows.
I bet they don’t eat LC in a real Irish Pub.
I’ve never been to a pub. That I know of.
I’ve been to bars that try to act like a pub.
Without the Irish music and the fish-n-chips.
St. Patrick was Irish.
He drove the snakes out of Ireland.
I’m not that afraid of snakes.
I say that now, because I’m not face to face with one.
If I were, I’d probably drive them out of my way.
That doesn’t make me a saint.
Pretty far from sainthood I am.
I wonder if Pat danced all straight and tall, stomping.
Stomping on the snakes.
This is a strange post. Not that my readers will be driven away.
Like the snakes.
My readers are just a few, no matter what I write or don’t write.
I’m back to dancing again.
I bet that would be good exercise. If I could find an over 50 Non Irish dancing class to join.
I promise if you stick around, I won’t ramble like this.

Monday, March 30, 2009

Right to Bare Arms

Just what the hell is happening in the press lately regarding Michelle Obama’s choice of dress? Seems that there are some who find it necessary to consider her figure flattering style of sleeveless sheath that seems to be her favorite garment, weird garb for the winter season. Just WHAT is the big deal? Her arms are toned, she does not have wing like flaps of flab assaulting the Canadian Prime Minister when she waves an arm in the general direction of the oval office. She’s tasteful and fashionable. So just what is it that is so offensive?

We are. We like to elect officials and icons that we would fight for during the campaign, then when they are fully hoisted up for all to examine, we pick ‘em apart in the press in lieu of a slow news day or better yet, in lieu of more coverage of natural disasters and world hunger. It’s true! The old wives comment that states, “If you don’t have anything nice to say, why, sit over here by me dear.” (insert southern drawl, a la Steel Magnolia’s)

We (collectively speaking, I’m not saying that I personally do this-oh, all right, I’m just as guilty as all of you! Point, point, point.) do this same thing with our movie stars. Seems we make them popular, watch their shows/movies, buy the magazines, and then proceed to cut them apart to make our insecurities seem smaller I guess.

I blame the press. I think we need to read blogs more – because we all KNOW that blogs are more or less supportive and forgiving. BAH! That’s surely not IT!

Michelle, if you’re listening, I think your dresses are awesome, but I’ll have to wear a sweater. My arms have yet to see 20 reps of upper arm strength training and frankly, I get a little chilly

Friday, March 27, 2009

Pesky Perky People

Thank God it’s Friday! Tadatadeetadadeedum. I’m giddy and delirious with joy.
Nah, not really, but I am unusually perky lately. Despite things like WORLD HUNGER, NATION WIDE RECESSION, the last episode of ER. So sad.
I am still somewhat perky. Don’t you hate it?

So, are all you non cult members curious to see what all the math and meal planning got me after my first week of Weight Watchers? I lost 1.2 lbs.
When I scowled and crinkled up my face, I was reminded not to be dissapointed with that loss and that 1.2 lobs could be compared to 4 sticks of butter! (BUTTER? WHERE? I shouted, and was quickly shushed.)

I’ll pretend the four sticks of butter are missing from my ass and abdominal area, but seriously, it’s from my boobs NATCH.

So, two days into week two and I’m a little over fed I must say. I’m eating more breakfast and lunch food, with a balanced dinner and evening snack and sometimes I have to cruise the kitchen to find a few extra points to make my total for the day. I’m NOT EVEN EATING THE POINTS THAT THEY SET UP FOR ME!

Seriously, I think I can do this. Course, I’m staying away from alcohol and candy. My two vices. The best perk to eating a good breakfast and lunch? Clearly, I’m not sleeping in my recliner after dinner! I actually got through the 10:00 newscast, Letterman and then caught Craig. I’m not very tired. So, this will make it easier to get a move on and exercise. Promise. Maybe next week.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

I’m NOT your mother, OR am I?

What are the chances that it was YOU who left a used toner drum unit near the community printer, shoved in the original box complete with recyclable sticker loafing around the inside for several months now? Huh? Fess up you slackers! All of you.

Do you wonder who’s going to post that damn package? Does someone clean up after you NON professionals at home, cause I know it’s not me!

Or is it?

I swear, if I were walking through the waiting room and found a pair of socks, I’d be sure to pick them up. I’m always making coffee after the jerk before of me left the coffee pot on, but no coffee inside. I’m always finishing up where most of you have left OFF!
YOU – WHO are you damn it! Tell me.

Do you see sucker written on my forehead. (most assuredly they do)
In fact, I think it is a lemon sucker to boot.
Happy Hump Day, two more days until the weekend you lazy asses, but I'm sure you know that. And there's much rejoicing.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Auto Epitaph- You Ought Not To

So, you know that we humans are fascinating and strange creatures right? BAH! Of course you do, look at you, sitting there reading about strange creatures just as I. {insert strange creature type here} sit typing. It’s a circle of strange, maybe not so fascinating.
A little bit fascinating though and I continue, of course, but anyways, as I am an observer of all that is odd, an observer that aspires to higher heights than any normal “people watcher” classification, I came across an interesting slice of strange the other day whilst driving said ’98 Oldsmobile home from the office. (I say said, because I have considered it before en post, *Yawn* that I should soon shop for a newer vehicle, but am too cheap or frugal to do so; oh - not to mention lazy, did I elude to lazy? Yeah, that would be me)

I came off the exit ramp of my local interstate exit to merge onto a three lane highway, all lanes are pretty crowded, but no fears, merging is my strong suit, only to come to a dead stop behind a line of traffic. Nothing is more patient than a line of traffic at, oh say, five p.m. on any given work day, but whatev.
I’m wedged in between cars to the left and right of me and both in front and back of me. Now would not be a good time to pick my nose OR tweeze my chin hairs. So, I sit self -consciously glancing around. The car in front of me had the shiny back end of an old fashioned-made-new hearse. It was a type of SUV but low to the ground, beats me the make or manufacturer. But what was stenciled on the back window? A large Superman “S” in the symbol. I had to nudge closer to the bumper to read the writing. It read, Johnny Smith, Slipped into this world: 3/11/78 and Sleeps Peacefully 12/28/01. It was an auto-epitaph! I’ve seen it all! Try and trade that in. It’s not that I’m a hater of 21st century funeral practices and other such things, but wouldn’t our horse and buggy ancestors be shaking their shoulders and calling us strange?
Just sayin.

Monday, March 23, 2009

Flailing Limbs? Seems I'm "IN"!

What a great weekend! I saved up all my points for pizza this weekend, let me just say- it was worth it.

The husband heard that this was the last showing of Riverdance in Chicago this weekend and surprised me with tickets. (he's good that way, all full of ticket-tron-trinkets to lure me to "date him"...honey I love ya!) It was Riverdance without the Lord of the Dance Michael Flatley – but I thought he had tiny little spinning feet and you all know what they say about men with tiny little feet. What Ev.

The show was totally entertaining, and now I am consumed with dancing a good leaping jig! (in mind only, because my tapping toes did not cooperate t'all) It looked as though the dancers were flying around the stage, legs darting at odd angles with those cool ½ tap and ½ pointe shoes…it was cool. If you ever have a chance to see it – Go, do so.

Click clack, clickety click click. Tap, tap, tappidytappidytappidytapiddy tap tap. It was more rhythmic than I can type on a Monday morning. I wonder how many calories those dancers burn. Quite a-lot I imagine from their skinny little limbs a-flailing. Great end to the weekend, that dancing and the pizza. Seriously doubting loosing weight on this diet, I'm eating more than I have ever before, AND I got to have pizza points. We'll see, maybe I'm doing something wrong.

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Spring - Sours as the Day Grew Long

Wasn't it Garth Brooks that sang "Our lives are better left to chance", in the song The Dance? I thought so. He's right you know, not as if we have any say so in the matter for the most part. We can do all that we are supposed to do and MORE and some things don't turn out the way that we hope.

Yesterday, the first day of Spring started out hopeful, full of sunshine, birds singing, oh jeeze I had the day off work for goodness sakes, the day was already starting out great!

I've been counting my crazy points (for my new club, WW-Anon) and I'm coming in under the mark, able to eat a ton of food. I experimented with some filling breakfast ideas - seems that egg beaters a-la Aldi brand, are rather delicious with a sprinkle of cheese and a slice of tomato and mushroom. (not plural, just one, I rather hate those moldy dirty things) Very filling.
Happy and full, I took my shower and began scrubbing my bathroom, bedroom, doing laundry-you know normal Maid-in-Indiana duties. My mother, who is 79 years old, and practically homebound, called and asked that I come over. By the time I arrived, even though it was after noon, she had a small list of To-Do's for me. Washing her bedroom curtains, windows and her bathroom curtains and shower curtains, took me a few hours. Trying to scrub the Old Lady smell out of the dewy bathroom tile and tub (come on, you know the smell, I can't explain it for you) Took some elbow grease but I figured it was good for some activity points so I scrubbed harder.
What you might say does all that detailed work have anything to do with the happy arrival of spring? Nothing, it really doesn't, but yesterday my eldest Daughter was supposed to receive the results of a pregnancy test that would confirm or deny the answer to the burning question, Did the artificial insemination she had undergone the few weeks before work? My daughter and her husband have been trying unsuccessfully for a few years to conceive a child. This year she decided to go to a fertility specialist, and after a battery of exspensive testing for her and her husband, it was decided that nothing is wrong with them, they should try IUAI. Much like a chemistry experiment, plotting your cycle, watching your egg grow via ultrasound, taking hormones that wreck havoc with your moods and then injecting a serum that allows you to drop your eggs at what they think is a precise moment. The insertion of the hubby's sperm through the cervical opening (that really isn't "open" and hurts like hell) all that , and then do the same thing over the next day....then wait.
So,on this first day of Spring, my Daughter was to receive her results. I have to say she was prepared for the worst, she had a good spirit, was told that it may take several tries...all that.
She received news at work that morning that her new position as educator for respiratory therapists in clinical instruction was eliminated and she must return to a staff position. To her, that means the stress of working 10-2 hour shifts and midnights, afternoons, mingled with days. Her mostly weekday job would now include weekends and holidays. She's very upset.
Then the news that her insemination did not work. No pregnancy.
Is this all my news? You betcha. Having fell in love with that tiny face about 31 years ago, I still see all her disappointments and sadness as something that squeezes my heart and allows me to scream "It's Not Fair".
They are prepared to be optimistic about her job change and optimistic about another round of insemination. Yeah! Our lives are better left to chance? I think so, because we have so little to do with it anyways.

Happy Spring everybody!