Saturday, January 30, 2010

Pack Up

I finally got my Christmas present from Sergio & the girls!
I was told about it and nervously anticipated it's arrival home.
A few years ago, they bought me this Nancy Noel print tittled "Pack Up". It is one of my favorites of her work. Although I owned the print, I had not gotten it framed. I had mixed feelings about what kind of framing and where I would proudly display it.
I have admired Ms Noel's work for years. I am blessed to own a few of her prints (an original is but a dream). I favor her animal prints but love her Amish, Angels, and African works as well. (Hmm~ I never noticed they all start with A).
When the girls were quite small we met her and she signed my daughters shirt (Emily just happen to be wearing a T-shirt with a piece she did for our Zoo). I found her charming. I dreamed that one day, like Jane Seymor, I would have her paint my daughters (until I realized the cost). My girls later took me to a lovely Gallery that Nancy opened in nearby Zionsville. It is a fabulous church that she converted into a Gallery. It is THE place to see her work and grab a bite and tea in the cafe.

I had wanted something very different than what Sergio chose, so I was very nervous about how it would turn out. I can't believe how perfect it looks! He did very good! I would not have chosen this type of frame & thought I knew exactly what I wanted, but, my dear husband took a gamble and, well, he did GOOD! I absolutely LOVE it!
"Pack Up" is of my Riley Girl's breed. Nancy Noel has captured my Riley's expressions in four of the dogs. It is a limited edition, so I know, few are out there. Also, with our recent scare of losing Riley, having this print means even more to me.

I was very surprised that Sergio & the girls did this for me. Pack Up has been rolled up in it's protective tube for about 4 years waiting on me to get it framed!

I can't stop starring at it! Isn't it beautiful?


Reason 29 why I am Blessed

This came in today's mail. I am so proud of Annie!

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Frickin' Spam Comments!

I am so frustrated with all the spam comments I am getting on my Blog! These darn spammers have figured out a way to bombard our lovely little blogs with this garbage! I get medical, financial and just plan weird junk!
I tried to filter it out but now I think I am reduced to monitor all incoming comments. Is everyone else having this problem too? Anyway to ban them?
It's such a bummer to see a comment then find it is some stupid spam!

grrrrr!

Sunday, January 24, 2010

New Reads!

I got some new Books to read! Always exciting to get new books! Actually none of them are physically new, but used books seem to have even more of a lure to me as they have been enjoyed by others and recommended to me.
1st we have "Boundaries" by Dr Henry Cloud and Dr John Townsend. This is a Christian point of view on setting healthy boundaries and helping one learn how to say NO and when to say YES. Definitely a must read for me. A friend at work asked me if I would like to have it as she felt this may help me as sometimes... I may be too nice (believe it or not) and I allow others to take an advantage of me. Kindof have my whole life so this will be a much needed read for me.
2nd we have "The Time Traveler's Wife" by Audrey Niffenegger. As you may recall this was recently made into a movie. A nice little romantic story that my daughter, Emily, enjoyed very much and is sharing it with me. I have just begun this book and look forward to escaping into it.

3rd we have an all time favorite of mine that I have been wanting to own for several years. "Bartlett's Familiar Quotations" by John Bartlett. I found the 17th Edition at "Half Price Books" for a mere $14.00. HUGE SAVINGS!!! I feel in love with this book of Quotes years ago, finding it on my Bestie Sheri's bookshelves. I have borrowed hers, and always told myself to buy a copy, taking this long to actually do it. I find this to be the best resources of passages, phrases and proverbs. Quick & easy to find what I am looking for. the first volume was published in 1855 and only 258 pages. Today (or the 17 version which was published in 2002) it has grown to 1431 pages. I want to get an early edition as well as a newer edition. I love this book! I highly recommend this to all!

Well, I best be off. I should be watching the Colts vs the Jets game with my Hubby. I really want the Colts to win of course, but I am not that interested in Football. Maybe I will bring a book in there!

Friday, January 22, 2010

Here Kitty Kitty Kitty!

A couple of nights ago, my husband called me into the bathroom on the far side of the house.
Shh, listen! Do you hear cats?
uhmmm, OMGosh! Yes I do! They must be outside, fighting!
Sure enough, a couple of big cats seemed to be doing that territorial cry. I just shooed them away, and carried on.
We have heard them a couple of times, but I thought nothing more of it. I figured Figuro, the big orange cat that lives next door, must be trying to maintain his territory. Although, Sergio & I sometimes swear it sounds like it is right under us.
Today, I thought about it and told Sergio we should check the vents & crawl space doors to see if any cats got in. When I got home from work I found a poster taped up on our light post with the face of a cute little missing house cat. I called. They ran over. After calling Cali Cat (the female decawed house cat that got out) unsuccessfully. We (the neighbor missing the cat & his son) did manage to chase a HUGE gray cat out from under the house.
BUT that was just one cat from one crawl space. You see, my house has two crawl spaces, the second from an addition to the house. Over on the other side of the house, I have another cat under the house in the crawl. GREAT BIG, MAYBE A MAINE COON? I don't know big darn cat that has no intention of moving. Did I mention he/she is really big? I can't convince my neighbor to take this one, to replace their missing cat. They kindof thanked me, and we will continue to look. I will continue to monitor activity for Cali Cat.
So, now I am worried about this HUGE cat that has managed to get in my crawl space.
I go in. I gotta rescue it!
So in I go!
Luckily, we have the kind of crawl spaces that are dry, has a nice vapor sheet covering pea gravel, and, ahhhh, electricity with light switches!
I'm good with that. Pleased I find NO bugs, rodents, etc (well, jeez, what do I expect? This big cat has been eating something!). The cat stares at me without blinking. The cat doesn't move a muscle, yet I hear growling......
I'm in on my hands and knees trying to sweet talk this uhm, tiger? Suddenly I realize the growling & hissing is coming from my left! Opposite of Cujo Cat. FIGURO! The other neighbor's big yellow cat, and he is PISSED. I get around him realizing he is territorial over this other cat or scared shitless and trying to act tough. I get my back to the wall and try to get the cats to run out the opened crawl access door. I shoo Figuro with my big ole flashlight and he bats at it angrily instead of running FROM me, he darts toward the other corner and Cujo Cat Tiger chases him up into the rafters/ floor beams whatever they are! Now these cats are deeper under my house!
Meanwhile, above me, I can hear my dogs FREAKING out! They hear the cats, me, OUR cats, whom have decided to "talk" back at the cats under the floors, and an occasional, "Knock it off!" from Sergio, who is on a business call instead of trying to keep me from losing a limb to a Ferrel cat (actually he doesn't know I am under the house at this point, although he did here the neighbor under there!
Now, that I know Figuro is involved, I run to those neighbors to get them to help me. The teen daughter joins me under the house, and eventually her father also comes over (but not under the house~ cat allergies!)
For now, we have given it a rest. I left the door open for them to run out (not a great idea as it is cold and our bedroom (the area this situation is) has gotten chilly as well. So, I put the door back on, but it's leaning so they or at least the BIG CAT can retreat out. Figuro will come when he knows its safe and he wants back in at his house.
Lets just hope I don't wake to even more cats under there in the morning!


Monday, January 18, 2010

It's A Barbie World!

Here is Pat, Barbie & Me!
This morning my friend Pat & I went to The Indianapolis Children's Museum. We anxiously awaited for this day, just like all the little & big girls, getting a chance to see the Barbie Exhibit.
Pat is a collector. She raised boys, therefore, unlike myself, didn't get to play with Barbie's for an extra ten years while my daughters went through the Barbie era. The only Barbie's I have left are pretty ratty, or should I say, "well loved".
We were thrilled to see some of the same we had growing up.



Ahh! Remember these?
Here are the last ones I remember owning. (I think that was during my Sis & I's period of leaving Barbie & Ken in the camper & spying on them to see if they were "doing anything", or maybe that was my girlfriends... Julie was smarter than me!)

They also had beautiful sketches from the designer, as well as some incredible full size dresses displayed.
(Here is a Betsey Johnson Dress!)


All in all it was a lovely exhibit. We were slightly disappointed, as we were hoping to see a Barbie represented for every year. They had many hands on fun for the little girls. Such a delight to watch little girls on the "Barbie Runway", the "Designing Dresses" and the "Barbie Office" play stations.

The Gift Shop was amazing with many collectibles. I talked Pat into a beautiful Black Label porcelain like collectible. I should have taken a photo of Pat and her new Barbie! She was very excited!

Barbie did alot of different things for different little girls. Yeah, yeah, several felt they are "bad body image" and all that crap. Whatever! Some little girls liked to pretend through the dolls. Play dress up, take care of them and explore the possibilities. Personally, I loved Barbie. Mine even had a GI Joe come hang out for a few years (he was so ruggedly handsome!)

My Therapist has a Barbie sitting in her office. She uses her in Conferences when she is a speaker. Her Barbie has a little Vise attached to her head. Screwed on tightly. It is a model of how many of us feel! It makes me laugh.

All in all, I love Barbie. I am glad she was my friend. I am glad she was my daughters friends. Who couldn't use a friend like Barbie?

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Ahh.. Spring is Lurking!

So pretty!
I got these at Walmart (yes, Walmart 2 bunches @ $5ea). They were a perfect Spring Pick Me Upper, as well as a nice centerpiece for my Wine & Candle party I had last weekend.
I love spring flowers. They are so delicate and sweet. I can't wait to start planting at this home. First I want to see what is already here. I know we have Iris' (my all time favorite). I am hoping many more colorful selections! It will be a lovely surprise as spring arrives and all start to bloom!

The Greener Pastures

You know how the saying goes:
"The Grass is always greener on the other side of the fence."
I hope you also realize that it isn't "always" true.
Your neighbor may seem to have it all but you don't know what pains she goes through. Your friend with the perfect marriage? No marriage is perfect, there has to be some lows to appreciate the highs. The co-worker with the fabulous figure? Who knows what is really going on there.

You may always want to be better, stronger, richer, smarter, or safer. But, is it really so bad where you are? What can you do to improve your own? Let others motivate you, but never be envious.

Another saying I admire is:
"Be careful of what you wish for, it just might come true."

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Homeless Faces

On my way into work or home, I pass three Homeless Shelters. I also pass several faceless souls, sleeping on the sidewalks, under bridges, and makeshift shelters. They cover their faces as they sleep. Where do they come from?
I worry about our many homeless citizens. With the growing economy problems, we are seeing a rapid increase of homeless people. Downtown Indy we have always seen the homeless men, but recently the number of women have increased in our area.
It is cold here in Indianapolis during this time of year. I can't even imagine facing this cold without a warm home. We have four season here. With that, we get rainy Springs, hot & humid Summers, colorful but crisp Autumns, sometimes with cold rains, and our Winters are very cold, windy and snowy.
The line is long in the morning, people waiting to get into Horizon Homeless Shelter. Hoping for a warm meal, a place to sit down and get warm, an encouraging word or perhaps some hope. At this homeless shelter I rarely see children. It's hard to tell the men from the women, as the stand in the cold covering up. As I get closer to this shelter, I see several people walking over, to stand in the line. Some are carrying coffee from the Hardee's restaurant across the street. I get stopped at the light here every day. I see these bodies, but they never look up at me.
During the day, downtown is a different story. I see at least three, sometimes several more, on the same corners. There is the colorful musician playing his horn, by the very elite Conrad Hotel. It's a busy corner leading to the Mall, Bank and more. He seems to fare well there. Across from him is a friendly fellow always asking for change. He shares this corner with a quiet elderly man that has a stuffed animal Puppy on a leash. He sits there with his sign & jar for change. Closer to my office is a woman that doesn't seem to be able to make up her mind what her story is. She alternates signs from "Homeless Mother", to "Homeless and Deaf". She is the only one that irritates me as she is very much not deaf, and I have yet to see her children. By my Bank is the man shaking his change box telling everyone Bless you & have a good day. Roaming around, there is a very scary mean guy that seems to be high or just very chemically imbalanced, all the time. He will follow, intimidate & spit at you. NEVER make eye contact with this fellow! There is the large man that seems to be sleeping off a rough night every morning, this one actually makes me tear up and pray for him daily. The old man with yellow eyes and the longest dirtiest dreadlocks I have ever seen, just walking through the city. Then the poor guy that smells of urine, near our Steak & Shake.
I pray for them all.
I don't give them money. I can't. Although I am very much in a better situation than they, I don't have any spare currently. Also, unfortunately, it's much like the stray animal that you start to feed, they then expect it, next thing you know you have a new family member. Sergio has put up with a lot of stray animals that I have brought home, I am sure he'd put his foot down if I tried to bring home a stray person.
I also am that person that constantly give to the person standing at the intersections or store fronts. It is easier to give to them. It is not as daily nor do they really see me.
I know in my heart that it does not matter how they got there. Some have truly ran a very rough life. Some may have started as a run-away. Some (several) have mental disabilities and without proper health care can not help themselves. Oh, and I am not forgetting the other. The ones that are refereed to as the BUM, the DRUNK, or the DRUGGY. They are there too. But, regardless, they are in a worst situation than I.
Who am I to pass judgement?
I am no better, just more fortunate.

Saturday, January 9, 2010

Reason 38 that I am So Blessed

Look how adorable Dakota looks in his new bed!
I love this little guy. I am so grateful he came into our lives.

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Time To Take A Xanax!

These are the kind of post that help me most but I hesitate most about writing...

The day is going, well, interesting is a nice way to put it.

We awoke to a snow storm here in Indiana. No problem, we are use to changing weather. We have "weathered" them before. Nothing like the good ole days when SNOW meant SNOW.

One of my daughters, needs to be back @ school by tomorrow morning for an exam. We wanted her to go yesterday before the storm hit, but, she wanted to wait till today. Now, there are severe road conditions and she no longer drives an SUV but a small compact car. We are making her wait, much to her protest. I promise Baby, we will make sure you get there before tomorrow's exam!

The Hubby, cancelled his business trip to Louisville because of the weather. Headed out to plow some streets and parking lots instead. (Small side business). His 4 wheel drive won't work...Can't plow without it. He is awaiting help @ a repair shop. Not in a peachy mood.

I am working on a project that I can't seem to complete in a timely manner at work. Stressed out and tying to get my speed up to par. Timing is so important when you are "contracted" I really want to become permanent. I need to become a necessity instead of extra.

My friend's Dad just had MAJOR surgery. He is recovering, but, we all fear these times as our parents age and run into these situations. I want to go sit with her. Hug her and be by her side. We have many miles between us that make this impossible for me right now. I am with her and her family in prayer though.

My own parents are having issues as well. We will leave that at that for now. Again, I am deep in prayer.

Tuition, mortgage, utilities, as well as a mountain of other expenses have hit as promised this time of year. Gosh, what happens to our paychecks?

I have to get the tax stuff together... Where is everything???

Another friend has been going through the toughest of all times, yet I can't help her with what she needs most. The frustration of not being able to make it go away, or make things right is torturous. I want her happy and smiling again! Prayers, Prayers.

Health issues are pissing me off. Plus I start my weight watchers group. I am sure I will be a peach too.

My home is a mess. I keep cleaning and it just magically gets a mess by time I get home. How does that happen? I need a day off just to make it sparkle again. While I am at it I need to throw all the Christmas stuff in the attic for another 11 months.

I am having my first get together, since moving into the new house. A little Wine & Candle Party on Sunday. I am stressing over wanting everything so nice for this gathering. Plus many of the gals I wanted to see, can not make it. Crap...I have no chairs. Is this storm going to interfere?

I still have to drive home in this mess and it just hasn't stopped snowing yet! I miss my SUV. Will my Monte Carlo impress me or chicken out?

These are the days I fear most. I get overwhelmed. Overpowered. My depression creeps in. My anxiety goes sky high. I am feeling Kookoo!
I am praying. I am playing some great music from Pandora (Internet music). I am trying to remember to breathe.

But, some days, I have to listen to my body. My mind. It is telling me I could use a little extra help that my Doctor has told me I must use when this happens. After all, he is a strong Christian man that would never steer me wrong. He prays with me. He is a man of God over his being a man of medicine. He knows how I feel about medication. But, I will trust him and listen today. For I know not what else is to come. Today, I need a little help from panicking.
Hello Xanax.
Take me Away!
Chill Me Out!

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

joy...


"Joy is what happens to us when we allow ourselves to recognize how good things really are."
Marianne Williamson


Tuesday, January 5, 2010

You Had Me At Ruff

Look at my adorable puppies!
They are snoozing in the window seat in my room. (Yes~ that is Mischa in the top picture, with her back to us, she is bird watching, ignoring the dogs).
My little, and not so little dogs make me happy. They are huge pain in the butts, stinky and costly. But bring me so much joy and love!
I have had my eye on this Dog Cushion for a while. I had hoped to find bigger ones. But, you get what you get, and don't throw a fit!
It's 24"x4". Removable quilted cover. I got it at TJ Maxx for just $13! The tag has this website for you folks without TJ Maxx if you are interested www.imjmarketinginc.com and is made by Palmilla Home Furnishings. It is so freakin' cute! Perfect for little Dakota. Both Riley & Bandit have dog beds. BUT... Bandit seems to be trying to claim this "pillow". He growled at Dakota kindof telling him to "back away! I saw it first!" Dakota did. And is now ignoring it (anything to please Bandit). Riley hasn't really noticed it. Bandit has tried to sit on it.... and started to carry it off. Hmm... I may have to work on this a bit. Maybe I can make one for Bandit that says, "Barking With Woofs", I saw that once too!

Friday, January 1, 2010

01.01.10

2010
It's here!
The new year.
What do we have to come?
What will this year bring to us?

I have spent a good part of the afternoon & evening reading Blogs and comments from this past week. I feel very connected to them/you and enjoyed catching up. Just about everyone has written about The New Year.

My turn.

I am full of thoughts.
Should I say this or that?
What would my readers & followers want to hear?

I had a fun evening out last night that gave me many smiles. Sergio & I laughed all the way home. Should I post about it?

My head is very clear about my expectations for this year. Should I write about that?

Reviewing the year? I found it very interesting to read a month to month brief account of what the year brought to a couple of my blogger friends.

And, then, of course there are the New Year Resolutions. Although, my true Blogger Followers may remember that I do new year resolutions on my birthday in June.

I am listening to my New Year Songs as I type. I love these songs. I promise not to leave them up too long, but they are really good songs for the start of the year.

I think, I will just leave you with this:

I am looking forward to this year.

I will promise myself to make the most of it and embrace each day.
I will start every day with optimism.
I will be positive and try to bring that attitude with me to all I encounter.
I will be grateful and accept what God has given me and give back.
I will love my life.

Have a Blessed year my friends. Full of happiness, good health, great memories, the best of friends, may it be prosperous and the best year so far.