Saturday, January 31, 2009

A Moment for Me & Julie



Today, my Sister, Julie, and I attended The Indiana Heart Hospital's 2nd annual "A Moment for Me" event. What a wonderful way to share the morning. It is always a treat to spend time with Julie. I love my big sister, and do not see her near enough. To spend time together and learn about being healthier was a great chance to catch up. We also got some pampering as well.

The program consisted of cardiac screenings, cooking demonstrations, meal time planning, cardiovascular risk factors class, skin care, Zumba classes, Pilates classes, facials, and chair massages. You basicly signed up to take 3-4 of these choices as well as visit vendors and have an incredible heart healthy lunch. We had Mellanie True Hills, Author of "A Woman's Guide to Saving Her Own Life", as Keynote speaker, as well as the Director for the "Healthy Hearts Center" here in Indiana, Cindy Adams,RN PhD. We also had the pleasure of meeting and listening to Coutni Hall, Miss Indiana USA, and Bailee Zimmerman, Miss Indiana Teen USA.

This was my second trip to this event. Last year I went solo, and was tickled to share this with Julie this year. They generously gave us much bang for the buck ($20 per person). We were given a bright canvas goodie bag filled with stuff, including Ms. Hills book. Hopefully Juls and I will make this a yearly event. If you are local and have the opportunity, join us next year. It is really a great day.

One More Post About the Snow!

I know, I know, I have already posted about the snow. More than once this week. But, you have to understand, we, Hoosiers, and many other Snow Country People, love our snow. We complain about the driving in it, and the problems that can come with it, however, if you ever grew up in snowy weather, you get it.

There is truly something magical about it. It glistens, it sparkles and it is just so darn pretty! The sun shines on it and it stays brighter through the day. In the morning, and especially at night. It can be so therapeutic to just watch it. Also watching the children play in it. Instead of cleaning the house, (as I should be doing), I have been mesmerized watching two boys around 12 years old working feverish on a snow ramp for their bikes. While other boys their age across the nation are playing Wii, they choose to fight the cold and use creativity and build this incredible adventure.

I also want to show you the difference between "Dog/Kid yards" and "No Dogs/Kids yards". One of these yards is my neighbors and the other is mine! Taken from the same window facing different angles. Need I say more? At least I can look at the pretty yard!

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Another Snow Day

No school again today because of the weather. It did stop snowing, however the roads are still iffy. When the school buses have a potential hazardous time, school closes. So much for the Homecoming festivities.

However, Annie is happily enjoying the snow with her friends. Last night they played at the park for hours. It reminded me of my days of glory. I wish we took pictures. I have these images in my head that make me smile, I wish I had them printed as well.

Back in my day, we hung out at a local golf course. For hours, we would hang out, sled, and, it was the seventies, so yeah, we also would have a drink or two to keep us warm. There would be dozens of teens all there from our school & a couple of rival schools. For the most part we all got along and had a blast.

Times were different then. The weather was too. Here in Indy we ALWAYS had snow in the winter. We had Blizzards. Tons of snow and school cancelled for a week.

The Blizzard of 77/78 was the best. The town shut down for a good week. I was a sophomore in high school. I will hold such memories of our neighborhood pulling together, digging out of our homes, and sharing and helping each other.

This photo is of my husband and his roommate taken around 78/79. Sergio is the cutie in the towel and army boots. That is Danny in his underwear. This priceless photo was found by Danny's wife. She had it blown up and framed for the guys. I love this photo. Isn't it great?


Annie back out again today. I want her to enjoy this weather and snow. I want her to make memories and I hope she takes pictures to cherish.

Just not in her undies!

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Let It Snow, Let It Snow, Let It Snow!


Finally, we got a good snow! It started yesterday afternoon and continued until just about an hour ago. They are saying we got 11 inches. But, with snow drifts, give or take a few inches here and there.

My husband has been plowing since 5:00 pm yesterday, stopping once at 2:00am for a quick sandwich, then stopping this morning at 7:30am to grab a shower and about 30 minutes of shut eye. He is back out now.

Happy Camper! Gets to "play" with that new snow plow. (gets to pay it off).

Annie, got snowed in at Aunt Delia's. She went over after school, then as the weather progressed, we felt best she stay there for the night. They dug her car out this morning and off she went for home. My heart in my throat. She has never driven in this much snow. Once about a year ago, she slid off the road, luckily was not hurt nor damaged the Tahoe. I was so happy to see her pull into the driveway. Her words when she came in, "That was so fun!" She is definitely her fathers daughter!

I let the dogs out this morning. Remember 11 inches of snow. Dakota is about 7 inches tall. He loved jumping through Riley & Bandit's footsteps. They played while I shoveled the patio and a path to the yard. They all had fun. Dakota was a bit confused though and pooped in the dining room. Stinker!

Well, I am off. We have errands to do and appointments to keep. I may even play in the snow (-:

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Pick Yourself Up

One of the songs that play on my play list (if you have sound and don't mute it)is called "Pick Yourself Up". I believe Ella Fitzgerald originally sang it. I am a fan of Diana Krall and love her version.

It is very fitting for me today. This song has ran through my head much lately and I pray that I remember it.

Listen to the words. Maybe they will help you in a time of need as well.

"Pick Yourself Up"
(Very Best of Diana Krall by Diana Krall)

Nothings impossible I have found
For when my chin is on the ground
I pick myself up, dust myself off, start all over again.

Don't lose your confidence if you slip
Be grateful for a pleasant trip
And pick yourself up, dust yourself off, and start all over again

Work like a soul inspired till the battle of the day is won
You may be sick and tired but you'll be a man my son
Don't you remember the famous man who had to fall to rise again?
They picked themselves up, dust themselves off and started all over again.


Have a blessed day.

Monday, January 26, 2009

School Spirit

Annie's high school is celebrating Winter Homecoming this week. With that they have several spirit days through the week. There is "Hip Hop Tuesday", "All around the World Wednesday", "Decades Thursday", and "School Spirit Friday". Today was "Senior Citizen Monday". My Annie has no fear. Here she is, as "Carol", the Senior citizen.
She not only had a wig to enhance her looks, she used pillows for her wide rear end and tummy. She thickened and darkened her eyebrows and she had made a little "Life Alert" that hung around her neck. At one point she "fell" down a busy hallway very over-dramatically. Moaning the way down, then letting everyone know she was okay, she had her "Life Alert" on. She cracked up her friends and teachers all day. Many students didn't know what the heck was going on as many kids could care less about spirit days let alone school spirit. Annie was often the only student in a class that was participating in these events. She doesn't care. She is having a blast. Some of her friends are too fearful of embarrassment to take a chance and have fun with it. Annie loves to have fun.
I will try to post you with the rest of the week. Decades day she is wearing MY Floral jeans (didn't every girl have a pair in 1981?

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Speaking of Dogs...


While taking those photos of Dakota for the last post, I ran across these that were taken when our friend Brian stopped by with their beautiful new puppy, Arizona. Isn't she magnificent? Seriously! Look at her! She is only 5 months old (and yes, huge!). She is (pardon me if I get this wrong) A "Native American Eskimo Dog".

Brian is very proud of her and easy to see why. She is very good, well trainned already and is just about the coolest looking breed I have ever seen.

Just wanted to share these pics because she is so beautiful.

UGH!! The Tasmanian Devil Strikes!


Looks can be deceiving! This cute little Pomeranian may look like a sweetheart, but he is really a Tasmanian Devil!

He is our little guy we rescued from a Puppy mill and discipline with him is not as easy as with a "normal" dog. He has deep scars and it has taken us a year, just to get him to look at us. He is a very nervous little guy. Skittish is putting it mildly. You can not punish puppy mill dogs, it will destroy months of hard work restoring trust with them.

This is what I just caught him doing! He has NEVER eaten the furniture! Yet this is the second time in that last two days he has chewed a hole in the couch! He has been so good for the year we have had him (except for his "accidents, and love for under garments that he can reach in laundry baskets). The other dogs have never done anything like this. I really don't want to start crating him again. He loves being with Riley and Bandit free to roam. He sleeps with us. Happy 24/7 and this behavior is new and upsetting. He has the best chew toys and bones. I don't know what has gotten into him.

Stinker... but I still love him dearly.

January 25th Quote

I am quite the Nervous Nancy lately.

I do believe this quote and I do believe that with God I can get through anything.

This is a tough week for me. Don't ask why, you don't want to know. Anyway, I am anxious and I am looking for clarity. I will keep on with my head up and embrace each day with joy (okay, I will try).

Anyway, any extra prayers for me would be appreciated. My prayers for you all as well.

Friday, January 23, 2009

Compassion Fatigue


I have heard of this before, but I thought that it was a condition that people in the health care, particularly people that work with hospice, and Firemen, police and social workers get.

Apparently not. Moms, wives, husbands, compassionate people in general are at risk.

People that try to fix others. Make things better or easier. Think about others comfort and tend to others needs before their own can after time wear themselves down. If you are consistently taking care of others, then suddenly have some needs, your loved ones don't always have the ability to help you as they have always relied on you to be the fixer.

From, "Mom, wheres this?", "Mom, I need that asap". "Honey, I need you to take care of this & that". To employees and friends asking you to help out with extra duties because you are nice and just naturally step in and say how can I help?

There becomes a break down within yourself where you can not help yourself because there is nothing left of yourself to give even to yourself. You wear down and become exhausted.

There comes a point where you have to learn to say, "No. I can't right now." There also becomes a point where you need to learn to ask for help yourself.

My lovely counselor has brought this to my attention. Some concern that perhaps I am showing signs of Compassion Fatigue. Which is funny to me because I always feel so good when I help someone. But, I am looking into it and finding some interesting stuff about it online.

Two sites that have been helpful are:
www.compassion-fatigue.com and www.compassionfatigue.org

If you are like me, you might find them helpful.

The Blame Game

Do you ever wonder why some people seem to always blame others when things do not go according to plan?

I hear people say, "Man, I got Scr*wed!", "I'm getting a raw deal!", "They are f*cking me like a alley cat". (sorry, I hear that alot from a friend).

I also hear, "You should have.." "If only You had listened..", "You, you, you..."

Lordy!

I know I can't make everyone see things my way. Obviously, my way isn't always the right way. What works for me may not for others. I just can't help but think that it is what it is. That stuff happens and it's up to you to deal with it.

For me, no matter how tough it gets, I have to believe that God won't put more in front of me than I can handle. That there is a reason for what I must endure. I don't like it, but it is healthier for me to assume that I will learn from this and become stronger for it.

Blame someone else? I sure could. In fact, if I wanted, I am sure I could point my finger at someone or thing for everything that has happened. But I won't. It would not be fair nor would it fix anything. Just make that person feel an unnecessary guilt.

I don't have the answers. I just go with the flow and pray for a better day. I also count my Blessing, and am thankful things are not worst. Someone may always have things better, but someone else has things worst off. Being in the middle isn't so bad.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Update on LEEP Surgery

Okay, boring to some, but this is the best way to update about the LEEP surgery I had instead of making a bunch of calls.

The Good News is they feel they "got it all". The abnormal cells were at a high grade so it is very fortunate that they were able to go in and take the tissue out.

I am to now wait till March to have another pap then a recheck in May to see if my cervix has been able to grow normal healthy tissue back or if it's back a third time. Then, if they are back we will have to rethink some alternative treatment options (no brainer to me.. BYE BYE cervix! Thanks for all you have done for me but time to move on!)

I hate this wait. Am I growing healthy cells or cancerous cells? Will I continue to be a nervous Nelly wondering and anticipating each visit to the Doctor?

My cervix is recovering. Unfortunately my mensuration cycle came a day after the surgery that has caused additional discomfort and I am iron deficient again. I have Iron supplements but notice the expiration date is 1/03. Are they useless or just not as strong? They still smell strong.

The Bad News is a am being a baby. I hate this! I think I could handle knowing that we are on to the next step and having a hysterectomy. Than to continue this uncertainty. Okay, Maybe not. Who wants to have a major surgery and be out of commission. So forget that.

I just want to be healthy!

Censorship within the Blog

This Blog has been very therapeutic for me. I find that writing my feelings and thoughts, validate how I am feeling and help me to understand that I am not crazy, just struggling with my life.

I try to be be very careful in what I allow myself to write. I don't dear write all that is playing inside my head. Frankly, I would scare the crap out of people that love me. There has been a couple of times when close friends called to talk to me about reconsidering some of what I "let out". I have edited a couple of things. Their opinions mean more to me than any.

I also do not share the fact that I have this blog with some people. No one from my employment know, nor would they have an interest in blogs. I also keep a tight lid with the family. My parents love me in our strange dysfunctional way, however, my Mother could easily be hurt and not read things for what they are. She jumps to conclusion and I would never want to hurt her. She would also worry way to much about things that she must not.

My oldest daughter, Emily reads this. She even posted an blog, that I was very honored. She gets me. And I think at 20, she is mature enough to see this side of me. It helps her to understand me.

My Annie has read a bit. Basically, at 18, in her Senior year she is just to busy with her own life. I always give her a heads up if the posting regards her, and she reviews them.

Sergio has read a little as well. He doesn't really have an interest in reading them. He doesn't understand my love of this and thinks it is a little weird. Letting strangers read about me freaks him out and he thinks some nut will stalk me or something. He thinks it is odd, but he tries to understand why I feel better when I write. He is supportive, but would rather see me pour my frustrations, depressions and energy into something like baking so he could "appreciate the outcome better".

My sister, and a few close friends read it. I have reconnected with a couple of friends that have found me. And I have a wonderful small circle of Blogger friends that have made me feel very good about myself and I so appreciate their interest.

This is my way of feeding a need of feeling more appreciated and heard. Everyone I am close to is so busy with their own crisis and life in general. I also have a therapist that keeps me from going over the edge and helping me to get back the me I miss.

Sometimes I may write about things that are heavy, but if I can help just one person that is going through this see they are not alone I know that would help. Also I appreciate advice from people that may have struggled like me.

I will continue to be careful with what I write. I will keep the too private stuff out. But I will continue to write from my heart, and hope that this will continue to bring me joy.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Welcome Mr. President


Today is the day!
In honor of our new President my quotes for the week are his.

Change will not come if we wait for some other person or some other time. We are the ones we've been waiting for. We are the change that we seek.

It took alot of blood, sweat and tears to get where we are today, but we have just begun. Today we begin in earnest the work of making sure that the world we leave our children is just a little better than the one we inhibit today.

Barack Obama

Sunday, January 18, 2009

SURPRISE FOR ME!


I forgot to get the mail yesterday and ran out at 11:00pm to get it. Surprise for Me! A package! And from one of my favorite Blog Buddy Pam! (ScottysPlace).

She sent me "A Slob in the Kitchen", by Karen Duffy!

I thought she was just kidding when she offered a give-away on her blog. Lucky me! She wasn't. (:

Ironically, I was just thinking of how much I needed a good inspiration to start cooking. Yesterday, I decided to bake cookies. I thought I had all I needed, but ended up improvising. I made Oatmeal raisin cookies. How hard can that be? well, trust me, harder than I thought.
First, I used Almond Extract instead of Vanilla. My Vanilla looked icky. Smelled weird too. So I am thinking, Almond may be tasty. Gave it a good little taste. The problem I ran into though, was when I discovered I was out of baking soda. I tried to remember what baking soda actually did. What was it my Home Economic teacher said? hmmm.. oh well, it only asked for a tiny amount so maybe it will be fine.
whoops. The baking soda is necessary.

I am thinking that is what keeps them from becoming ROCK HARD after they cool. They were tasty out of the oven, however the longer they sat the worst they became. (We ate them anyway, even Riley the dog had trouble with this rock hard cookie!)
This book A Slob in the Kitchen looks like the perfect cookbook for me. It has cool little monkey guides letting me know how had the recipe is. Also, I love the way Ms Duffy writes, she speaks my language: I like to laugh while cooking and not because I am messing up, but because something funny is said.

I can not wait to start this! There is this wonderful section in the back to get me ready. Everything from what staples I need to have in my pantry, glossary, equivalents, and produce notes.

Thank you Pam! I am sooooo excited. Maybe I can find something to send you. hmmmm. Let me think.

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Antiquing With Lynn

Last Sunday I had a very enjoyable afternoon with my Golden Oldie Lynn. We ventured out to Southport Antique Mall Inc.
FABULOUS FINDS!

Lynn & I spent a couple of hours making our way through a maze of booths full of wonderful treasures.

We found ourselves going back in time rediscovering things of our past as well as truly old items that captivated our curiosity as well as made us say, are you serious?

It was just the best afternoon I have had in a long time. I am thrilled to find that Lynn enjoyed this as much as I and can not wait to journey out again. We both loved this Mall and are anxious to go to another soon.

I love this kind of shopping. I actually did not buy a thing. Lynn found a great ashtray for her collection, "and in mint condition, mind you!" so she did walk away with a purchase. What is so cool about antiquing is that it is just as much fun to look as it is to buy.

Traveling down memory lane with a childhood friend is the best way to go. Especially remembering things together. It was truly magical.

We ended our outing with a great bite to eat in a old fashion diner, down in Fountain Square. Cool old neighborhood near downtown. Our next target for antique shopping will be here. We just didn't get to the shop before it closed.

I can't wait! Are you ready, Lynn?

forever friends


I was searching for photos of recitals to go with the earlier blog (obviously never found them). Instead I found a box stuffed with letters from my Besties and others written in the late '70's and early 80's.

Some were from school, written during boring classes. Some while I spent summers in Texas. Finally, the college ones. I have been laughing for an hour. We wrote about the stupidest stuff. I love it! I love that I kept them.

The majority of them are written from Sheri. She loved to write and did so often. Deb & I always got more from her than we gave to her. It was and is her passion.

We wrote silly little messages and drawings at the end and on the envelopes. We also wrote the corniest stuff about our one true love (for that week anyway). We wrote of our hopes and dreams. We wrote to encourage and to protect each other.

I am so Blessed! We still have those strong bonds, but now they are sealed in a stronger force that only comes from 30 plus years of friendship. Today I talked to both Sher & Deb. We try to talk, text or email at least daily. We pray for each other. We will always be there for each other. I know they are there ready to sing the Ant Song or be there for me regardless to if I needed to share a laugh or a tear.

My friend is someone who takes me for who I am.
~Henry David Thoureu

shuffle, ball, change...


When I was a little girl, I took dance lessons. My parents were rather poor, but Mom always scrapped money together to be sure Julie & I were educated in the arts as well as entertained.

I never realized what a sacrifice Mom must have made to make sure we danced. My biggest memories come from a place called Brookside Park.

Brookside Park was established in 1898 with 108 acres of green space as well as a grand recreational community center, complete with gymnasiums and small ball room and stage. Although it looks mighty grand I must tell you that by the 1960's, this was not such a desirable area. The fact that it has survived all these years, and in a rough neighborhood is amazing. It still stands today and continues to serve the community. It has always been a place that made recreation affordable to all. Even today, you can get free lessons there for several activities. The above picture is of the back view of the recreation center.


When my father was a boy, he played ball here and played on these grounds.

Years later, my Mother would take Julie & I here and allowed us to chose our dance classes. The classes cost $.25 per class. We then would have a recital to show off our new "skills" to our parents. We took lots of Tap (my favorite), Baton, Hula (Julie's favorite), Gymnastics, and I think we even tried Ballet.

I remember loving Tap. I was never really any good at it but I loved the sounds I could make with my shoes,, and trying to master, "Shuffle, ball, change".

Life is much like that simple but thought out step. Shuffle, ball, change.

Today was one of those harder days for me. No particular reason. Just more of a struggle. I could not help but think about Brookside Park and trying to master that step. I remember my instructor patiently, yet frustratedly trying to help me grasp it so the class could move forward with the dance we were practicing. It was so important for me to get it.

I feel that I must shuffle- gather what I have, ball - prepare to move forward, then, and only then, can I change, and move to the next foot to make my step.

Does that make any sense?

Friday, January 16, 2009

Yum Yum!

My favorite magazine came today! . REAL SIMPLE. I love it! This month's issue had an article on Grapefruits. I am a big fan of grapefruits so I was excited. I share the passion for this tart fruit with my Bestie Sheri. Only she seems to enjoy them as much as me. We both love them with salt. But will eat them with sugar, plain, whatever.

This issue gave a few recipes. I decided to try the broiled grapefruit with honey this morning. Not bad! It had a flavor that reminded me of something, but I couldn't put my finger on it. Anyway, here is a shot of my attempt.

A footnote about grapefruits: They are packed with antioxidants and vitamin C. It is also said to be a fat burner. Good to eat prior to meals to burn the fat of your meal. Remember the Grapefruit diets from years ago?

I hope you give them a try! Pink grapefruits are my favorites.

Enjoy!

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Brrrrrr!

It is cold outside today!

Really cold! Annie left for school half an hour ago (two hour delay) and I hated sending her out in -6 degrees. I started her car for her 20 minutes prior. I don't even know what the temperature was when Sergio left.

I work this evening and I dread getting into my car after work. I wish I could get someone to start it up and warm it for me! I drive an older Chevy pick up that has over 250,000 miles on it. It is a great vehicle. When Emily left for BSU in the fall, we sent her in my Tahoe rather than this. I was afraid it might decide to final conk out with her driving it. Today I wonder if it will be able to handle this cold weather.

I let the dogs out this morning. While Bandit & Riley took care of business, Dakota started his usual run about the yard. He quickly realized something was different. He lifted a front paw, then a back paw, then fell over. He just looked at Riley, as if he thought she'd rescue him. I called him back in. I am sure he will try to find a spot on the carpet when I am not watching.. Stinker. I'll try sending him back out in a moment.

I hope you all stay safe and warm in your homes as well. If you live in a warmer climate, remember us colder bloggers. It's not the snow that gets us down, it is the cold temperatures! They say it is going to be -10 here in Indy tonight! yikes!

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Just Another Day...

I am taking it easy today. Yesterday I was wiped out. I am not sure if it was the LEEP surgery or the emotional toll. I imagine both. So today, after reading and catching up here in Blog~World, I am going to turn some music on & attempt to clean the house.

It is finally snowing. Sergio is frustrated as he had to go out of town this morning on business. I know he is thinking about the snow plow and commitments here. He will rush home this afternoon and start pushing. I just pray he will be safe coming home and not rush into an accident!

For the past few months I have been seeing a counselor for my depression. She makes me face things and look at them differently. This past week, the assignment she gave me was to daily list 5 things I did that was positive or made someone pleased. It could be as simple as opening a door for a stranger. She is trying to help me to see the good I do instead of only seeing the negative I do. I could quickly give 5 things that are negative but the positive is not so easy. I know I am nice and make others feel good, but to actually think about it and list has been surprisingly difficult. I did not think this would be so difficult. I also have been "forced" to see where some of the negative energy comes from, and that frightens me.

I know this is a part of my getting better, but I really didn't think it would be so hard. I guess I just thought I needed someone non-bias to chat with, I never thought that I would actually have to deal with myself.

I hate depression. I hate how it grasp you and sucks the life out of you. I want to be me again. I really miss being goofy and happy all the time. I love my family so much and this is unfair to them. I am proud of myself seeking help. I wanted to show my girls that the important thing is to not let it control you and to show them that one can get there life back and live "Happily ever After".

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Embarrassing Moments

By now, we have all seen or at least heard about this poor Vail Skier and his mishap. I don't know if I feel more sorry for him or his adolescent son sitting next to him. Can you imagine? "Hey Billy! Saw your DAD on the news! HAHA!"
And then this poor guy, left hanging there for the world to see for what seemed like eternity. It was cold too.

I have had some pretty embarrassing moments, but nothing like this.

The closest I can remember is in 1st grade.
A young bully stole my pencil. I tried to retrieve it, but got "caught" by the teacher talking to him. She wouldn't let me tell her what I was doing. Instead she snatched me up, and started shaking me like a rag doll (this was the 60's it was allowed). Anyway, I had dressed myself that morning and mistakenly put on my big sister's underwear instead of mine. Within seconds she had shook the panties down to my ankles with the classroom roaring in laughter.

I thought I would die.

See, not even close.

Feeling Fine...

Well I had my little procedure this morning. The Doctor decided to go ahead with a more aggressive "Leep Colposcopy", to get a larger "shaving". (Love the terminology.) They had some complication with the electrosurgical equipment. It kept failing on him. Make me nervous but things happen. Eventually, all went fairly well. I am tender but not in pain. I am told that I will hear something from him when they get results and that it could take up to two weeks.

I started shaking during it. You know the nervous little shake you get? Or I get. I tried to stop, but I was so nervous. I have a wonderful kind Doctor that reassured me. He delivered both the girls. I have the utmost respect and trust in him. I asked him worst case scenario, would I just need to have my cervix removed if these cancer cells keep showing up. He told me lets just concentrate on getting this done and hopefully that is all we will need to do.

I have too much other stuff on my mind lately, so I will just file this to the back of my mind (okay, I will try). Nothing I can do but wait and hear from him. So, until then I will try to concentrate on other looming things in my life.

Monday, January 12, 2009

My Little Bandit Boy


My little Bandit has been having some tremors lately. He is about two years old and he didn't start these till about a month back. They are slight seizure type jerking of his head. Just his head. He seems to be in no pain, just seems to confuse or scare him. We have noticed it three times. Each episode is brief, no more than 30 minutes total. He will tremor for a few seconds, be fine for a few minutes then start another "tremor". He lays or sits still during them, them licks his chops afterwards.

Today, he did it again and I goggled (don't you love google) head shaking tremors, etc. I got so much information! The good news is it looks like it is a condition that is common and can be treated. The bad news, looks like he is going to require meds. At least it looks like a simple fix. Some of the "problems" were severe and required MRIs and surgeries. We will be visiting Dr H. soon.


Bandit's favorite spot in the house is in the corner of this "L" Shape couch. (Trust me friends, you don't want to sit here! The dog hair is hard to get off and he always moves the blanket off). Anyway, especially since we had our little burglar attempt, he sits guard here. This is Dakota with him in 1700 hour watch! Bandit is pooped after a mile walk with sergio & I.

Life Quotes


This was written by Robert Browning.

I have this in our room. Actually, it is in the master bathroom above the sink mirror where Sergio & I can see it every morning when we wake up, and every evening before going to bed.

Don't you love what this says? I think about it often. I look forward to growing old together with Sergio.

God has Blessed me.

Twenty-two years and growing strong.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Being Afraid

Are you ever afraid? I mean really afraid. The feeling of anxiety and constant thinking of what lurks beyond.

I am a Big Frady Cat. Always have been. Never the adventurous one wanting to go first or lead the way. I think too much about the what ifs. I am the type that lays in bed thinking of the worst scenario instead of the best. I anticipate things are going to be bad.

With my current situation of anxiety and fighting depression, the slightest problem I foresee with the worst thing that can happen. I am a freaking bag of nerves.

On Tuesday, I go in for another cone biopsy on my cervix. The first one I had in May, came back fine. They managed to "snip" all of the precancerous growth and decided I have high grade dysplasa. I then started going in every three months for a new pap smear. The first recheck came back fine. But this last last month came back abnormal again. So, back to getting a biopsy.

I know it'll be fine. But this time I have such an uneasy feeling. I am feeling afraid. I am being a big frady cat.

Keep me in your thoughts, I will let you know how it goes.

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

If you use your daughter's computer, don't forget to log out :)

I'm laying in my bed with my kitty watching family guy, and stalking my friends on facebook till it bores me, && then I decide to look at my mothers blog to see if it is any more entertaining. Yes this isn't Jan, my mom, it's her lovely daughter. I don't think she will be mad that I am posting this, but she didn't sign out of her blog account, so I thought I leave a post.

I've been home from college for break for almost three weeks now && I feel so useless at our new home. I normally go to Florida for a week during break, but not this year. I was worried I lose my mind being home fore three weeks. I don't like sitting around all day with nothing to do. I'm ready to start school again so I will be more productive with my time. But now that my break is ending, I am kinda sad to have to go back to being a grown up; going to school. && having to face that Comcast bill thats awaiting me when I get back. I have really enjoyed spending time with my family though. My little sister is a busy bee, always with friends, the boyfriend, or working, so I have been spending time with my mom && dad a lot. It has been surprising nice. We have gone out to eat a few times && I find myself sharing many stories. I even told them about a gossip site for colleges, it's were college kids can write anything they want about anyone, or anything. I've made a few post. Some I feel cool about like hottest girls on campus, yet my friend && I made a post about myself as a joke. It said emily=b*tch, it was our way of saying this is stupid no one reads this lame site, apparently we were wrong. It turned out to have like 40 post about what others thought about me. Some were rude and gross, and some were others saying how great of a person I am. Later that night after dinner, I ended up sharing it with my mom. We laughed at all the comments people left about me, the good && the bad.

It's nice that even though my mom is a wonderful mother, who is guiding me through my years, and still giving me advice, I am really glad that we have started to become really good friends. As I have gotten older it's nice to know that I have her to go to and talk about anything and she is so understanding. The "come home if there is drinking" has turned into "if you drink, drink a glass of water between drinks". I am so very lucky to have an amazing mother to look up to. She has been kinda down lately with all the stress and the world falling apart, but she still seems to cheer me up. I don't think I could ask for a better mother. I'll never forget all the kick ass birthday parties she threw me. She would go ALL out. From making my friends && I all crowns, buying themed birthday sets, it was so much fun. I really thought I was a princess. My parents spoiled me, && they still do to an extent. I don't know what I would do with out her. I could go on and on, && I can see I am starting to babble... mother like daughter. :) i love you momma! <3

The Forbidden "Creek"


When I was young, there was a creek that ran along the side of our addition.

I first remember going there went I was in 5th or 6th grade. I went with my sister and the older kids. We were so not allowed, which of course made me want go even more. "It's bad news", my Dad would say.

The older kids hung out there. They smoked, sometimes drank and had a rope swing across the little creek. Myself and some of the younger siblings would sneak there when our siblings were not there so we could swing. We also would go spy on them.

One afternoon we snuck down to the rope swing. We joined several neighborhood kids there. Julie, my sister, was swinging across and the rope snapped. She fell and cut her side on something in the creek bed. It bleed and looked nasty but she made me promise not to tell our folks so we would not get in trouble. Luckily, it healed without any problems. I also had a new fear (swinging across rope swings.. I saw one break, that was enough!).

One of my childhood friends Pammy's, older brother & his friends had built a fort. Quite elaborate. About two feet dug out, then built from sticks and small logs. A small A-framed log cabin. We thought it was really cool. Those boys slept out in it many nights. They also befriended a homeless man and allowed him to sleep there. He'd buy beer for them in exchange for food and shelter. Pammy and I were scared of him. We thought he was crazy. My Mom would have freaked out knowing we knew this homeless man that lived at our creek for nearly a year. (One day he just disappeared, much like when he arrived).

My favorite memories of the creek was when it would freeze and many of us would walk about a mile down the frozen creek to the golf course and spend hours sledding. It was so beautiful. I can still see it when I close my eyes.

This picture is not of our creek. Ours was much smaller. Ours holds many memories just the same.

Reclaiming Myself


I miss the old Jan. I use to be happy. I use to be the one that cheered up others, showed others the brighter side of things. I was goofy and I had fun.




Now I worry too much. Have this nagging depression weighing me down. I feel bad, sad, not how it use to be.

It makes me so mad, because I know that I am so fortunate! I truly have this wonderful family and amazing friends that love me so much. I want to be enjoying life again.


Yesterday, I came to the realization that life is quickly passing me by. I don't want to miss another minute of joy. I want to change gears and appreciate the good more. Make the best. And grasp the opportunities I have and make more wonderful memories to come.

I have tried to adjust my attitude. I noticed my mood affects those around me more than I realize. Annie was a joy last night. She laughed, shared pictures and facebook stuff, we even window shopped for prom dresses online. I almost forgot how much joy she brings me. She is so amazing and I am so in awe of all she has become. Before I know it she will be off to college. I don't want to miss another minute.

One more note: these pictures are all from my 35-40 period. Maybe that awful blond hair did more than I thought with the blonds have more fun. I didn't realize it before reviewing this post. My happiest times I went for the "highlighted & blonder" look. Hmmm. Makes me think.

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

A Lovely Italian Catholic Farewell

Several years ago, I showed my Grandma Kitty a grand "Life Center" that recently was build in Indy. Life Center. Fancy word for Funeral Home. I was in awe with it because it had a huge Chandelier that was lit every evening. You could see it for quite a ways. I thought it was beautiful. As did Grandma Kitty, however, she said something that really stuck with me. She thought it was so wasteful to have a funeral at such an "expensive place". She said that she would never want to have hers like that.

When Grandma died, we had a simple service in a full church. Then we gathered in the Reception Party House at her apartment complex. It was a pitch in. With barbecue, salads, and all the fixings. Just the way she'd want it. We laughed more than we cried. We celebrated a wonderful life, her way.

Today I attended a Catholic funeral for a lovely 89 year old Italian woman. It was perfect too. This was the mother of our Best Man from our wedding. She also had two other sons and a husband she left behind. Betty, was a grand woman. She came to America as a young girl from Italy. She met an Italian man, and the rest is history. She was a strong Catholic and came to the church not just once a week, but several times.

Sergio loved going over to their house as a boy. He, the Mexican, and his Italian, Cuban, & Cicero friends ran the neighborhood. They grew up together in a tight Catholic neighborhood. In the late 60's, and early 70's these kids ran the neighborhood. They had a blast. It didn't matter "where" they came from, they were St Bernadette boys.

Today these "boys" gathered again to say goodbye to one of their Mothers. It was touching.

Betty had a full Mass. A beautiful salute, and the most delightful Ava Maria sang in Italian. I was moved.

To have ones wishes given, regardless to what they are is a beautiful thing. I have been to so many funerals. These were two of my favorites. I look at them as a celebration of ones life. We are showing respect and condolences to the family. Both of these women would be proud of how their funerals were handled. To their wishes. Beautiful, touching and well, happy. I left both of these feeling happy to have known them.

Saturday, January 3, 2009

Cats, Kitties & Grandma Kitty


I have always loved cats. I am not sure where this loved began, but I have a feeling it started with my Grandma Kitty. How cool to have a name like that. It fit her too. She was actually a Kathryn. Kit then Kitty became her name through the years. Grandma Kitty to me. She was a wonderful woman. She will always be a part of me. This picture was taken of us in a photo booth in 1978. It's a favorite and is blown up and framed in my home. Grandma Kitty also had a copy. Can you feel the love just by looking at this picture? My bond with her was incredible. At one time I thought I would name a daughter after her. Kathryn. Call her Kat. Unfortunately, as much as Sergio loved Grandma Kitty, he wasn't so crazy for this name. I am so blessed to have had her in my life.


As a child, I was told I was allergic to cats. I didn't know that I wasn't until one day when I got my hands on one. My first cat, Inky, came into my life when I was 12. From that day till today, I have always had at least one cat at a time, sometimes several. I have been blessed with many felines though the years..



I also seem to acquire several cat pieces over the years. People know I love cats, people gift cat stuff to me.
Kitty Knickknacks.
I have had a ton of cat stuff! I so appreciate it, but also, over the past 40-some years, I received plenty. Most get appreciated, then past on. Some have stayed with me. I have a few favorite pieces that I will keep forever. These are some of those golden oldies that I love.
I am done collecting kitty knickknacks.

However, I will always have a cat or two, but the pet kind.

Make It Stop!

I have started the New Year full of happy thoughts, ambitions, and strength. However, my brain has decided to not participate today.

I am anxious, jumpy and extremely tearful. I don't understand how one day I am feeling so good, then crash the next.

I had trouble sleeping, then came the nightmares. I woke up wanting to just pull the sheets over my head and stay there all day. I know that doesn't help. I understand that I can't let it pull me in.

I have both girls around today. The last thing I want is for them to worry about Mom. Sergio has been wonderful and I truly do not know what I would do without him.

I am going to crank up my Pandora Internet Radio. Find some cool stuff like Coles Whalen, Chris Botti, Norah Jones,Cat Stevens and Diana Krall. Heck maybe I will even get some Areosmith and Lynryd Skynrd to cheer me up. Better yet I will pull a little of all my favorites together and get into a cleaning binge.

Then if I can get it all done before dark fall, I owe Riley a walk.

Wish me luck. It is another Xanax kind of day!

The Magical Earrings



I do not know what is it about these earrings that make me so fond of them. I bought them about 5 years ago on a Girls Weekend trip with my Besties. I got them at "Harold's". They were my stepping it up a notch earrings. I am usually a simple post style gal. I had not been comfortable with dangles. But these were pretty, not too much pizazz and I wanted to get something to mark this wonderful time out with my girlfriends.

I fell in love with them. I thought of my girlfriends every time I wore them. I loved wearing them with a black sweater turtle neck with my hair up. They make me feel stylish.

Now for the problem with these earrings. I have lost them... often.

I lost them for a year once. Then excitedly found them in luggage one day.

Then I lost them again this year. Twice.

First, I sadly gave up. Thinking that I must have lost them in the move. One day, my Friend mentioned her daughter found these pretty but too grown up earrings in some items we gave them. They were in a small evening bag's side pocket. I graciously accepted them back.

Finally, at a Thanksgiving time breakfast with friends one morning, Lynn mentioned I was only wearing one earring. Dang it! I thought for sure I lost the other somewhere between home and the restaurant. I searched for weeks, then again, gave up. But, I refused to throw the single earring away. It was full of memories. It sat in my car lonesome for the mate. Then I ran across the mate in the carpet! When I think about how many times the vacuum ran across the hall where it laid! Was it there the whole time? Or did a cat or dog find it then spit it out there when it brought them no pleasure? ah, but wait, there is more. The one in my car vanished. What the heck? When Emily came home from school for Christmas, I reached in her cup holder to pull some change out and viola! My earring! She didn't even know I was looking for it! I must have been driving Emily's car the morning I meet my friends.

So they are together again.

I will continue to wear them, but hopefully stop losing them. They hold even more value to me now that I have gone through so much to keep them!

Friday, January 2, 2009

Disturbing My Peace

On Christmas evening, my husband shared something with me that he did not want to tell me. He loves me dearly and tries to protect me from unnecessary worry. This was something I needed to know and he decided he must let me in on it.

A couple of days prior to Christmas, someone tried to break into our home. Not earth shattering news, but enough to shake us up. To my knowledge, this is the first time this has happened to us, in our 22 years together.

I felt something was up. The dogs are especially jumpy and barked excessively since the 23rd. The slightest movement outside now rouse them. Particularly when someone bundled up in jacket, hat & gloves walked by. Bandit sits vigil on the couch propped up watching at the window 24/7 now.

Sergio showed me the marks on our front door. It looks as though someone pried the door open with a crowbar or something. Now the door pops open if not shut tight.

We suspect, that someone did this quietly during the day while we were out. Once the door opened it must have alerted the dogs and they scared off the intruder. Remember Riley is 105 pound Blue Tick Coon Hound and Bandit is a 60 pound Shepard mix with a snarl lip. (Quick scary when he wants!). Then Mr Dakota may only be a 10 pounder Pomeranian, but quite the ankle biter if he wants. Please that sharp piercing bark could make anyone run! Nothing was taken. And fortunately, my Dogs did not get hurt.

I truly believe they are the best security anyone could have. It is said that most Intruders will flee when a dog is in the house. It is too much of a hassle to deal with them.

I feel a piece of my sense of safety has been stolen. I don't blame the neighborhood. This can happen anywhere. A dear friend of ours lost all their electronics, Christmas presents and video games the week before Christmas. Our old neighborhood had several break ins through the years we lived there. We were just never hit. Again, we have always had dogs.

It is just another reminder that we must be careful. Also, good to have dogs.

Thursday, January 1, 2009

Quotes

I love quotes. I love reading them, analyzing them and trying to live by them. I love books filled with them. I love jewelry with them, and I love them on stuff. I have a Wall Quote, I have them on address books, frames, and even in my car.

They make me think. I wonder how people come up with things to say that touch me and others so profoundly. I wish I touched people that way.

I love how reading a quote will make me think of someone.

I am going to start sharing them in my blog. Once a week. I hope you will enjoy them as much as I do.

Favorite Christmas Gift


This is one of my favorite Christmas gifts.
Emily made it for me.
It says, "MOM" on the front side and on the back says; "With God, all things are possible"
It was excuse enough to go buy a bottle of wine and I have been nursing the bottle, using this glass all week.
Isn't it cute? She makes them for friends too. She is my artist little girl (um, or I guess, mature adult daughter.)

Annie is going to set me up to download songs to my ipod shuffle which i have had for six months but still don't know what to do with it.

I love gifts like this that takes the persons time and thought into them. I would way rather have these than any store bought items. (Although they did a lovely job helping their Dad fill my stocking with great store bought goodies!)

I currently am enjoying listening to Pandora Internet radio, drinking some White Zinfandel and cleaning the house. (Although I keep getting distracted).