Thursday, December 25, 2008

From My House to Yours...

Merry Christmas!

I will be back in the New Year!

May all your holiday dreams come true

and may 2009 be filled with blessings!


Dawn and family!

Monday, November 24, 2008

The Gambler (Returns!)

I'm baaaack!!!

Omg, you have all been very busy! I cannot go back and read everything without a time-stopper, but I will try to catch the new ones!

Although this is a busy week, too!

First thing is first... Atlantic City was awesome! Truly an adult playland! Lots of fun had by all! Especially my mom, since she was winning! I was up, then down, then up, then down, and on the last night back up! Mom let me keep that last night's winnings.

I promised to spend it on myself, and I did. Books! Yay!

We also had lots of great food! 4 and 5 star restaurants... yum! Il Verdi, Cuba Libre, and The Palm. Also, lunch at the Irish pub, Ri Ra!

Kathy joined us Thursday and stayed overnight. It was so much fun to just play and eat and drink together! No kids! No Hubby's! Just us three girls!

The kids and all the pets were thrilled to see us when we got home! Only one traumatic event happened while I was gone. The kids went to Boy Scouts and all the boys were playing football. And, Pumpkin Muffin. She tackled Fuzzy and somehow hyperextended his elbow. Again. Same one he injured playing 'real' football 2 years ago. Hubby had to take him to the pediatric orthopedist. Fuzzy is fine, but needs to be in a sling for two weeks total. Never a dull moment!

My birthday was very nice! We had dinner at the Grand Lux Cafe. The kids gave me a Starbucks gift card, and Hubby had already given me the iphone. My parents had bought me some clothes, my mom took me away, and I got to keep some winnings. Kathy gave me and itunes gift card!

A great birthday booty! 43! I am clinging to saying 'early 40's' but I am pushing it! LOL

This week will be busy! Yesterday and today, I am mostly trying to rest. I rested in AC when I needed to do so, but I needed more once I got home. All in all, the rheumatoid arthritis behaved pretty well! Thank goodness for the vitamins, they are really helping. And, taking a pain killer helps when needed, too.

I have an appointment for bloodwork on Wednesday followed by an award ceremony at the school. Both kids made the honor roll, with Pumpkin on the 'distiguished'. All good! I am very proud of them!

Thanksgiving will be here, too! We go to Kathy's house and I am really looking forward to it! I will be making and bringing my maple glazed carrots!

Okay... gotta go!

be well...

Friday, November 14, 2008

Thankful Thursday

Ahh... Thankful Thursday... you do like to sneak up on me! Like now, very late on Thursday... actually Friday am! I am having trouble relaxing because I needed to drink an extra cup of coffee at about 4pm today, and now the caffeine has me up.

I drank it in order to have a little extra 'oomph' because tonight we had a high school 'open house' to attend with Fuzzy. It was good, but long. Whew.

Here are my thankfuls...

1. I am thankful for Hubby, and that the biggest complaint I have about him is that he is a big baby.

2. I am very thankful for coffee! Especially, GINGERBREAD! Yay! It is a seasonal k-cup that I can only get for my Keurig coffeemaker during November, December and January! My first cup of it yesterday was just heavenly! I made a big deal out of it and Hammer was laughing at my lunacy as I turned the first cup into a momentous occasion!

3. I am thankful that on Monday I will be heading to Atlantic City with mom! YAY!

4. I am thankful for my upgrade to the iphone so I can keep in touch with home easier while I am away! I will send them pictures and texts and emails.

5. I am thankful for my early birthday/Christmas clothes from my mom and dad since I needed some new winter things and I can wear them next week on my trip first! (ps... My birthday is coming up on 11/22, since a few of you asked)

6. I am thankful for my kids and my family and my wonderful busy life! And, although it has kept me away from the keyboard, I know you are here and will be here when I am able to get back and catch up properly!

7. I am thankful that I have good healthcare and access to medicines that are helping me to manage my chronic issues! Today, I would never have made it all day and through and 2 1/2 hour Open House without the aid of vicodin. I was really hurting, but after the vicodin I was able to focus on my son and all the info that I needed to absorb tonight.

I will be keeping you all in my thoughts and prayers! This may be my last post until somewhere around 11/24! I will try to pop in and leave a quickie if I can, but if now, know that I am okay!

Maybe I will even win some money in AC! Wish me luck!

be well...

Monday, November 10, 2008

The Long Run

It was quite a weekend around here!

Friday, my cousin Karol and bf/sister Kathy came to visit with children in tow. We had a really nice get together! Lots of coffee, donuts, and chit chat! Then, the teenaged boys stayed in with McD's, and the rest went to dinner. It was very nice. Especially for my mom, whose birthday was the next day.

Saturday, for the first time in close to 20 odd years, my mom, dad, and I went out to dinner for my mom's birthday! Just the three of us! We went to a posh local Italian restaurant and ate like royalty! Yum!

Hubby was away with the kids on a scout camping trip. Pumpkin was able to go because it was camp tenting. It was her first time, and she had fun! In spite of the rainy weather, they were able to have 2 great campfire cooked meals and S'mores!

I got an upgrade on my cell phone to an iphone as an early birthday present today from Hubby and the kids and I am having fun playing with it!

Sunday was our anniversary. It wasn't Shakespeare and roses, but it was okay. Dinner was out at Houlihan's with the kids and my parents. A combo celebrating Grandma's birthday, which they missed, and our anniversary.

Hubby was the one who screwed up and actually scheduled the camping trip on our anniversary. I was not happy. I figured that knowing that, he would come home and take me to lunch or at least coffee together alone, trying to squeeze in some romance.

Oh no. Instead, he came home overtired, cranky, slept on the couch for most of the day, when not watching football, complained about how his hands hurt, and has been snippy with me on and off since then.

As you can imagine, this sunk the sails on the 'Love Boat' pretty fast. Happy freakin' 17th! Today, he is still the same bundle of overtired sludge and complaining about his poor arthritic hands.

Yeah. Complaining to me. Who lives with that all the time, 24/7. He promptly fell asleep at 9:30pm on the couch because being in pain makes you tired. Really? No foolin'? Imagine that. And, it makes it hard for you to sleep too? Wow. AMAZING. If you didn't tell me I wouldn't know. Okay, enough sarcasm for tonight! lol

So, as you can see, I am not particularly happy with him right now.

I can't wait to go to Atlantic City next week with my mom. It is the biggest treat to get away and have the special time together that we get then. It is a HUGE break for me which is really nice.

I just let the dog out and stood on my back stairs admiring the crisp air and gorgeous clear skies and big bright moon. Just magical.

My hubby may be wallowing in his mire and trying to sink me into it, but I refuse to go there!

I am still wayyyy behind reading journals! Ack! This time of year is so crazy for me, I will do my best! Hopefully, tomorrow will be quiet.

be well...

Thursday, November 6, 2008


Since today is a day that I count my blessings, I want to share with you.

This is my favorite sonnet by William Shakespeare. I fell in love with it, if you will, in high school. Sophmore year we had to pick a sonnet to memorize, and this was mine. It was prophetic since I am blessed to have a love as described in it's verses.

Let me not to the marriage of true minds
Admit impediments, love is not love
Which alters when it alteration finds,
Or bends with the remover to remove.
O no, it is an ever-fixed mark
That looks on tempests and is never shaken;
It is the star to every wand'ring bark,
Whose worth's unknown, although his height be taken.
Love's not Time's fool, though rosy lips and cheeks
Within his bending sickle's compass come,
Love alters not with his brief hours and weeks,
But bears it out even to the edge of doom:
If this be error and upon me proved,
I never writ, nor no man ever loved.
I hope you enjoy it. The beautiful words make me smile still and they hold so much more richness of meaning now that I truly understand what it is to have a love that lasts and does not alter, nor bend.
Thank you, honey. Our anniversary is coming this Sunday... I guess that is why I am feeling so nostalgic. 17 years...
be well...

Thankful Thursday

Wow, Thankful Thursday time again. Time waits for no one.

1. I am thankful that my 13 yo son and 11 yo daughter are healthy enough to fight with each other so loud that they wake me up. Feh.

2. I am thankful that I have had the patience so far not to punish their butts. That has more to do with the fact that they each have a friend here. Mish and Tiara slept over last night.

3. I am thankful that I was able to help my friends Bob and Ilene, and that I had the opportunity to be inspired by Bonnie.

4. I am thankful for old jewelry. I had a bunch from old boyfriends that I never wore. I was able to sell it back for the gold weight and get enough to reset a ring. :-)

5. Coffee. I haven't had my second cup yet. Dang kids.

The kids are off today and tomorrow for the NJ teacher's convention. So, I let them each have a friend sleep over.

Tomorrow, my cousin Karol and her boys are coming, and Kathy and my nephew J, too! Yay! The house will be filled to the brim and we will all get to catch up with each other! I really enjoy that.

Thank you all for your kindness and support. You are the best. I am wayyyy behind on visiting your journals, but I will catch up I hope over the weekend.

be well...

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

What About Now? VOTE!

Did you VOTE? I did! So did Hubby! This election, no matter who your candidate, is going to be historic, so get in there and DO IT!

Today, was Bonnie's Memorial. It was very moving, and hit me hard. I didn't expect that. In fact, I felt like a blubbering idiot. Apparently, I identified with her struggle with chronic illness more than I realized. It was also the first memorial I had been to since the brain tumor... I don't know... but I was wrecked. I have such a headache from crying and trying not to cry! Ack.

Ilene and Bob are holding up as well as they can. DogBoy and his sis, Peanut, too. The eulogies by Bonnie's nephew and brother were wonderful. The family is really pulled together and supporting each other. It was beautiful to see.

Bonnie didn't see the glass as half empty, or even half full. She always saw the glass and full to overflowing. I will not forget that and will try my damndest to always do the same. Thanks for the inspiration, Bonnie.

Go vote!

be well...

Monday, November 3, 2008

Sad Songs

Bonnie crossed over to the Other Side last night, peacefully, and surrounded by family.

It was pins and needles, the waiting, since Friday. We gladly helped out by having DogBoy spend the weekend here. It was no longer good for the kids to be there at the hospice. We had a good weekend. DogBoy is a mature kid, and he talked freely about his Grandma and his feelings.

My family was happy to help.

Tomorrow will be the service.

Remember to get out and VOTE!

be well...

Friday, October 31, 2008

Happy Halloween!

I just love this tag that Sugar made for me because I have a black pussy cat named Pumpkin! LOL (not to be confused with my daughter nicknamed Pumpkin Muffin...)

Last night for the first time, our police department sponsored Mischief Night in our town pool parking lot. They provided music, drinks, hot dogs, candy, and supervision. You provided your kids loaded with shaving cream, silly string, toilet paper, and flour socks.

Supervised mayhem ensued! A blast was had by all!

Here is what Pumpkin and Fuzzy looked like when they arrived home:

Oh yes, they went directly to the shower after the picture taking! In fact, in order to bring them home, Hubby had them place their sweatshirts directly into garbage bag (heading to the wash), and covered the trucks seats with towels!

Now, here is the picture of Pumpkin and Fuzzy in their Halloween finery!

Pumpkin is a 60's Go-Go Girl (think Nancy Sinatra) and Fuzzy is a Dragon.

Bonus in the picture, our new SUV that we got when our lease was up. We bought this one, it is an Envoy Denali that seats 7. Basically the same as what we had, just more foo foo. All I need is 7 seats and I am happy!

Hammer is looking forward to answering the door to hand out the candy and nickels today. That is his favorite part of Halloween. I like that, too.

I hope you all have a great day and wonderful start to your weekend!

be well...

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Thankful Thursday

You know you agree with Maxine... don't try to deny it! LOL

I have to say that this week flew by! One would think that with a cold it would feel slow, but here it is, Thankful Thursday again, and it feels like I just did one! LOL

So... thankfuls... hmmm...

1. All of you. I was reading journals this am and had quite a few laughs, smiles, and even some great useful information! Thank you all!

2. Hubby. He drove the kids this morning to school, then dropped off the car and walked to the bus. Just so I can sleep and try to shake the remains of this cold. He has done that just about every day he can to make it easier on me since mornings are so hard even when I don't have a cold, and I truly appreciate it. The little things really mean a lot.

But, just so his head doesn't swell too much, I will remind him of the years I worked and had to drag out one then 2 kids every morning because he left for work by 6am then. LOL heh heh heh

3. Coffee. Finally, the seasonal flavor that is my favorite is back out again! Yay! Gingerbread! YUMMY! It tastes basically like cinnamon coffee. I love it. I will stock up as much as I can!

4. My life in general. Choose joy. Always better for you than being stressed, sad, or cranky.

"A leaf fluttered in through the window this morning, as if supported by the rays of the sun, a bird settled on the fire escape, JOY in the task of coffee, JOY accompanied me as I walked."
Anais Nin, 1914-1977, French-born American Novelist, Dancer.

Joy is there in the simplest of things.

5. Coffee. Oh did I say that already? Going to get more...

Find your joy today. Think on your blessings. Join in on Thankful Thursday.

be well...

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Dirty Deeds

Ellie over at THE CRAZY LIFE tagged me to dish the dirt on myself!

Oh my... I have done these before and I think you all know every sordid detail already, but I will play again!

1. I blow my nose really loud. And, I honk. Yes, it is embarrassing, but efficient. My kids laugh...

2. I hate the bathroom sinks to have anything in them. No toothpaste residue, bubbles... If I see hair, I will gag. Especially, if I am at someone elses house. Clutter - doesn't bother me... but that... ick. lol It is a constant battle with kids to try to keep ahead of them... but they are getting better at keeping the sink clean.

3. I love Hot Pockets Breakfast Ham n Cheese. I know, but I do! And, I give all the big egg pieces to Libby. Egg is good for a dog's coat, after all.

4. If I am eating ice cream, I will let the dog or the cats have some right off of my spoon. They are my babies! I don't mind!

5. I have an adult friend who ditched me after I got more sick and it hurt as much as it did when I was a kid. Maybe more, because I didn't think that it could happen anymore as an adult. :-(

6. I love Chapstick and have them stashed around the house, on my nightstand, by the computer, in the car, in my purse, you can never have too many Chaptsticks! lol

Done! Now, I am supposed to tag 6 people, but instead I will beg you all to do it!! Come on now!!! It will be fun!

I still have my cold, which is really annoying. I am trying to keep it from migrating into my lungs. Ack. Of course, Hammer is well. Pumpkin got her cold, and got better, all after I got it! ::: sigh :::

I had to skip my Enbrel shot, or it would have sent me into some kind of infection for sure. I do NOT want to skip again, so this thing had better leave before Sunday! I did take the methotrexate and I probably shouldn't have, but it was a calculated risk.

Enough of that. I hope everyone is having a great week... Gotta get more java!

Oh yeah! I added a meez and I changed my music. You have to turn it on if you want to listen. This way it is your choice!

be well...

Monday, October 27, 2008

That's What Friends Are For

I am very happy to say that I do not have the flu, but Flu Kitteh and I do seem to have the same red, runny, eyes! Head colds suck!

Today, I made some homemade chicken soup. It was delicious, and hopefully, it will send this cold on the run! My mom also fried up some old fashioned, buttery, grilled cheese sandwiches! Yum - comfort food!

All things in perspective, though...

My friend Ilene's mom is being moved to hospice and the family is gathering for goodbye's over the next few days. I mentioned on my first Thankful Thursday here at this blog the week before last, Bonnie has been quite an inspiration to me. She always will be, and now I pray for her last few days to be filled with peace, and the comfort of those she loves and who love her as she passes to the Other Side.

I am, of course, concerned for my friend, Ilene, it is her mom and this is so hard. Ilene has her sister, her aunt, and her friends. However, I am more concerned right now for Bob, her hubby.

Bob dropped off his son to hang here for dinner and give them some time alone up at the hospital as is needed at times like these. When Bob came to pick up DogBoy he did not look very good.

Bob has been dealing with as much of the more unpleasant stuff as he can to make it easier for Ilene and her sister. It is taking a toll. Bob just lost his dear dad three years ago last month, and I know this is like reliving it for him. Not to mention how much he loves and cares for Bonnie.

I keep offering him a coffee and a respite here whenever he wants in between the running around. It is as much as I can do for now. And, of course, help with the kids whenever they need me. sigh.

I am off to read some blogs.

be well...

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Da Doo Doo Doo De Da Da Da

Greetings and salutations, Blogger Bretheren.

My darling school attending kids, Pumpkin and Fuzzy, brought home an ebola-based cold that began with Hammer on Wednesday night, and myself on Thursday night. Of course, I always get it worse due to the immunosuppressive meds. Joy.

Yes. Yesterday, I felt like dog doo. Today, I feel like the dog doo smooshed onto a shoe bottom.

Yeah, it's like that.

Anyhow, I wanted to drop in. I haven't kept up with blogs as much as I would like, but as I start to feel better, I will catch up!

Thanks for all your wonderful comments on Thankful Thursday! I didn't begin the tradition though. It was Gretchen from .

Anyhoo... yesterday was a nice day, and hectic all at the same time. Hubby worked from the house, which was lovely. We took the kids out to breakfast before school, a treat for all!

When we came back home I napped until noon-ish, then Hubby, Hammer, my mom and myself had lunch, sandwiches from a favorite local deli. Hammer had chicken breast, but we all had the Fresh Mozzarella and Roasted Peppers with Balsamic Vinegar on a fresh baked baquette. Yum.

After school we had DogBoy for the evening, as his parents were having a much deserved treat of a dinner out. DogBoy, a) doesn't do Italian food as he is a very finicky eater and b) needed to go to the 6th grade Halloween Dance as a reporter for the school paper. Pumpkin was attending the dance, so it all made sense.

After the dance, which Pumpkin attended at a very cool hippie, her friend Tiara came home to sleepover.

I know, we are nuts. But, Hubby and I want the kids hanging here with their friends. We want to be the house, so we can be a part of it, keeping an eye out. The kids really do like to come here, too.

My parents treated the whole crew of us to dinner at a local favorite and it was Octoberfest! They had a German Oompah band and we all sang and clapped and had some fun! Yay! The kids even got into it. My kids are so cool! They don't get embarrassed and really embrace fun!

Hubby took care of them all this morning, got Tiara home at 9am as she had soccer today, and whisked Pumpkin off to a birthday party by 9:30am. The birthday party is a movie theater rental and they do a nice party.

Which brings us to now! Hammer and I are relaxing, while Hubby and Fuzzy go to pick up Pumpkin from her party.

Oops - they are back! Gotta go!

be well...

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Thankful Thursday

Just look at that cat's face! You can totally believe that he is saying that caption! lol

Anyhow, another week has zipped by and it is time to count my blessings!

1. Coffee. As the long time readers know... the higher this is on the list - the more I needed it this week! 'Nuff said.

2. Hammer. My wonderfully, sweet, caring, sixteen year old son. Yep, you don't hear that much about 16 year olds - that is why I am so very blessed. Thank you, dear, for all your help this week.

3. Understanding. My family is so understanding of my stupidity/brain farts. Yesterday, I forgot that my dad couldn't pick up the kids, so I was supposed to do it. They called, I was in the shower, and I was ready to rush out and get them but they insisted on walking since it was a beautiful day. Pumpkin, Fuzzy and Pumpkin's friend, Tiara, all walked home together. The kids laughed and gave me a hug. No biggie they said.

4. Hubby. Oh sure, he makes me nuts, never picks up his clothes, remembers anything or does anything the first time I ask him. BUT, he loves me unconditionally, makes me laugh, often spoils me, is my best friend, and still chases me around like when we were single and I was oh, some seventy pounds lighter. I have friends that complain they don't 'get' enough - I have to beat him off with a stick... lol It's all good. ;-)

5. Books. They relax me, educate me, and entertain me.

6. My email Loopies. Being able to write one sentence about my day and knowing they will 'get' all the underlying 'disease' stuff that goes with it is a gift of epic proportions in my daily life.

7. Music. Almost all the songs in my ipod thing on the journal trigger some 80's memories of fun! They can't bring back my youth, but they do help me capture a little of that carefree and healthy spirit that I once had within!

Today, being Thursday, is also bowling day! The kids should arrive home any minute!

be well...

Wednesday, October 22, 2008


Gotta love a little Ozzy to get you going!

If I came off 'bossy' in my last post - I certainly didn't mean to be! My kids sometimes read the blog, that is all.

Anyhow, how about I make it up to you with a meme!

I was bopping around blogger and saw this and thought... me, too!

10 Things I Love That No Longer Exist
  1. AOL Journals. Heh heh, yeah, I am a little early, but I know you don't mind. Basically, I miss all of AOL of the late 90's early 00's. Dang. Oh well - the only thing constant is change.
  2. Albums. There was just something so awesome about buying a new album, getting the lyrics, the pictures, and all the liner notes. Hanging out with a friend and listening to it through the first time... :::sigh::: Now - who bothers? Maybe you buy a cd, but more likely you download what tracks you want. Easy peasy - but it does lose something.
  3. KeyPunch Machines. I bet most of you don't even know what those were, but my mom used to work with them. Way back before desktop computers! What I miss are the used cards that we used to make really cool wreaths with for the holidays! That would have been so much fun to do with the kids!
  4. Bath & Body Works Creamy Coconut. WHY oh WHY did you discontinue this heavenly scent that did not make my highly allergic child sneeze???
  5. Buff Puffs. Do you remember them? I need those for Pumpkin as she seems prone to blackheads, but oh no - there are a thousand similar-ish things, but not exactly this product, which is what she needs. Ack.
  6. Lipton's Unsweetened Ice Tea. In the individual bottles. Or the Snapple one. I love Ice Tea with no sweetner; not sugar, not fake crap. Just tea. :::sigh::: I used to get these all the time... now, you never ever see them.
  7. Halsa Highlight Shampoo. OMG, this was the best shampoo and conditioner I ever used! It was awesome. Marigold for blondes. If they brought this back, I would be thrilled!
  8. Mimeograph Copies. Remember them from school? How they smelled? That weird feel of the paper? I would love to be able to show that to the kids once! lol
  9. Arthur Treacher's Restaurants. I loved them. I don't know if they exist somewhere in the US outside my area, but in my travels, I have not found them again.
  10. Farrell's Restaurant. This was a restaurant in a mall nearby. It was the neatest place. They made a fountain mixed Sasparilla from scratch that showed the separation of the soda and the syrup and you got to mix it yourself! The same with Root Beer! It was so cool and fun! And, when it was your birthday - they had firehouse bells and sirens they would bang and whoop and sing to you after - it was a spectacle to see, and so much fun! I wish it were still around, the kids would LOVE it. The food was awesome, too. :::sigh:::

Okay, now it is your turn to list the things you wish still existed! This world is full of obsoletes... so come on and share!

be well...

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

So What?

This is what!

I decided to an little 'housekeeping' entry, so to speak, especially since there are lots of new readers here! Yay!

I try to name each entry with a song title. I started that in 2006, just for fun!

I added music, and I put it right at the top of the side bar so you can click the pause/play button if you don't want to hear any!

Any graphics, tags, LOLCats, and memes/surveys can be freely copied or snagged for your own use!

Also, for the science curious, if you click on the periodic table, you can get more info on any element! Very cool!

A quick note about comments... I allow anyone to comment and don't use that funky letter thing because I find it annoying. However, if anyone spams me I will remove their comment. I will also remove comments that are just downright nasty and full of obscenities. Hopefully, it won't ever come to that though!

Hmmm... I think that is it!

Oh, did I mention, I did get my hair cut and I like it! Pretty much just like the picture in my sidebar. It had gotten a little long and shaggy, so I needed the shaping. It did help improve my mood, too!

Today, so far, has been rainy and grey, but the sun is now trying really hard to come out!

Here are some pictures of our Halloween decorations:

Frankenstein's marker says, 'Here lies Frakenstein, Or does he?'

The Grim Reaper's Coach blow up is lit up, and in the coach part their are skulls that blink on and off! We have the dog bone sign up all year long, 'Dog is Fine, Beware of the Kids!'
That is my hodge podge entry for today! Going to get another cup of coffee!
be well...

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Viva La Vida

This kitty was too cute!

I haven't done a meme in a while... so how about 2 for 1?

Name the seven places you go most frequently each week and list the distance from your door.


Duane Reade Drugstore - 3/10 of a mile
Bus Stop to pick up Hubby from NYC - 1/2 a mile
School to drop off/pick up kids - 6/10 of a mile
Bank - 8/10 of a mile
Dunkin Donuts - 1/2 a mile

Town Market - 8/10 of a mile
Bookstore - Barnes & Noble 3 miles/Borders 2 miles

Yep, I live LARGE! NOT! lol Even though I live in the most populated area per square mile in the U.S., our little small town is great, and maintains that small town atmosphere!

Come on and play along!

Here is Meme #2 - Some Quirky Questions!

1. If you could only eat one fruit for an entire year and that fruit would magically be in season and ripe that full year, which fruit would you choose and why?

Well, in light of my recent blood work results - I say banana.

But, no Paul, just eating bananas and sitting in the sun isn't enough right now (to answer your question in comments on the last entry).

2. What is something that makes you sad?

Hmmm... this hard for me because many things can make me sad. To pick one, I would say I get very sad to see how often when you turn on the news there is violence being perpetrated against children. It rips my heart out.

3. What would you do if you came home from an extended vacation and found that someone else was living in your house?

Wow, I guess call the police! lol

4. What US President, alive or otherwise, would you like to have dinner with?

Okay... um, 'otherwise'? I am thinking that 'alive' or 'dead' are the only two options, right? Anyone? Okay... moving on...

I would most like to have dinner with George Washington. So many questions to ask...

5. What is your opinion on multitasking while driving? (Reading a book or work documents, changing clothes, fixing hair, applying make up, shaving your face, et cetera)

I do not do that when driving. When the car is moving, all focus in on operating it safely and watching out for the others that you cannot control.

After seeing the results of a great many car accidents during my years at the plastic/reconstructive surgeons office - you take the results of force on the human body pretty damn seriously.

6. Do you ever multitask while driving? If so, how often would you say you are guilty of it?


7. Do you tend to be early, on time, fashionably late or LATE to work and work related events? Do you tend to be more or less punctual for non-work related events?

I do not work outside of the home now, but everyone who knows me will be chuckling. I am the epitome of 'the early person'. Always. lol Especially when I worked!

8. What is a quirk your significant other has that you would define as "cute"? If you have no SO, what is a quirk you find cute in a potential SO?

Hmmm... Hubby always says that there is a 200lb limit on 'cute' and he tops in at 6'3" and 300lbs... lol I think he is 'cute' when he checks and double checks the lids of Snapple bottles repeatedly! LOL

Okie dokie... I am done for now. I hope to see these pop up in a few of your blogs!

It is a GORGEOUS fall day here! I hope it is the same with you!

Tonight we are having Taylor Ham and Cheese (fried) on rolls for dinner! It is football day, and the Giants just beat the 49ers (Yay) and the Jets are on playing the Raiders. Tied 3-3 right now, but GO FAVRE!

be well...

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Dirty Deeds

Today the boys had an Eagle Scout project to work at today. The boy earning his Eagle, was very happy for the turn out. They were collecting old computers, cell phones, tv's, and other assorted electronics. From 8 until 2pm today they were set up at our town's DPW, and filled 2 big trucks worth.

I decided that since it was only 2 1/2 blocks from my house, to walk over for the last hour and half, and to bring Libby.

Libby had lots of fun! She got lots of hugs, kisses, and tummy rubs.

This resulted in a very dirty yellow lab!

So, we had to give Libby a bath. Libby does not like baths. Libby is allergic to doggie shampoo, so we used the same non-fragranced, hypo-allergenic, expensive Aveeno body wash we use on Fuzzy!

Libby is cleaner now, but wet, and not happy about it. We dried her as best as we could but now she needs to air dry. She keeps trying to get away from herself. It's funny.

Anyhow, Mish is here, our spare for the day, and we are finishing up our chores and getting ready to head to Borders.

Then, the plan is take out for the kids, and then Hubby and I are going to have a much needed dinner out alone.

I am really looking forward to it. It has been a tough week.

I found out from my rheumatologist that my bloodwork showed major vitamin D and potassium deficiencies. It wasn't a complete surprise as I have shown it being low normal before, but these numbers were really bad. Almost, heading to the hospital bad. The plaquenil and the Enbrel can cause this - lucky me - I got the lottery win on that.

So, now I have two more meds to take. One daily for the potassium and an uber pill of vitamin D once a week.

Ack. Yep... fun.

And, it isn't like I don't do vitamins either. I take Emergen C at least once a day, which is filled with lots of vitamins and minerals. Imagine if I didn't.

Ah well, no point in pissing and moaning, as there may be a silver lining.

There is a chance that once my counts get back up to normal that my fatigue will fade. Oh how I hope against hope that it will be so.

Anyhow, today is a gorgeous, sunny, bright, crisp fall day. The kind that you can't help but have a little pep in your step when you breathe in the air...

Enjoy your weekend...

be well...

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Living on a Prayer

Did you ever notice how sometimes just one little thing can turn your day into crap?


There is this poem, by William Earnest Henley. It was written in 1875 when he was bedridden and stricken with tuberculosis of the bone. I didn't even know that was possible. He lost a foot at age 12, and lived his entire life with disability, but graduated Oxford and lived a full life. This poem was written during one of his many hospital visits during his life, when he was 26. He died at age 54.

The name of the poem is in Latin and it means 'Unconquered'.

Many of you will be familiar with its final phrases... here then, I share it with you in its entirety.


Out of the night that covers me,
Black as the Pit from pole to pole,
I thank whatever gods may be
For my unconquerable soul.

In the fell clutch of circumstance
I have not winced nor cried aloud.
Under the bludgeonings of chance
My head is bloody, but unbowed.

Beyond this place of wrath and tears
Looms but the horror of the shade,
And yet the menace of the years
Finds, and shall find me, unafraid.

It matters not how strait the gate,
How charged with punishments the scroll,
I am master of my fate;
I am the captain of my soul.

These words move me, and give me stead on my tough days.

Like today.

Thanks, William. If only in my own suffering I could create something so beautiful for the world.

be well...

Thankful Thursday

The 'Thankful Thursday' tradition continues here at blogger and it seems fitting to start with...

1. Coffee! Yumm-o!

2. Sheldor the Conqueror. Those who watch 'Big Bang Theory' will get this and laugh; this show is smart, funny, and very relatable for our family since my dear Hammer is also a physics nut/genius.

3. Boy Scouts. Life enriching, is how I would describe it.

4. AOL Journals. Thank you for giving me years of service, and for closing and forcing me to come here, where I am actually enjoying it more!

5. My cousin, Karol. Who loves me even though she can never get me on the phone! LOL

6. My sister of my heart, Kathy. I am so sorry that you are having such a tough week. I wish I could turn back the clock for you and undo yesterday. {{ hugs }}

7. Bowling. Today is the recreation league, and Mish and DogBoy will join Fuzzy and Pumpkin and there will be much rejoicing. Yay.

8. Dr. Rauscher. My former employer, who just stitched Hammer's finger up 3 weeks ago. It has healed nicely, which was tricky because the slice went to the nail bed. And, in spite of Hammer nearly mucking up the healing as well. (sigh, gotta love him)

9. Bonnie. My friend Ilene's mom, for showing me the power of positive thinking over chronic illness, and how never giving up can get you far. Thank you.

10. Milky Way Dark Bars. Just because.

Okay... there it is. The first 'Thankful Thursday' entry here at my new blog!

I hope you all enjoy and come leave a comment. (Paul, Dan, that was for you - )

Just a quick note, if you want email alerts, check my side bar! No matter where your email addy is hosted, you can get them. Just a few clicks and it is done!

Also, a quick thank you and way to the 55 'followers' I have! Wow! :-)

be well...

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Day by Day

I just loved this lolcat!

Hubby just called on his way to the dentist. Just a teeth cleaning, but I swear - you have never seen a bigger baby. He wanted me to come sit there and watch. Really? You must be kidding me. I don't even do that with the kids anymore, and he knows that. You should have heard him whining about it. lol Men!

Tonight is Boy Scouts. Hammer is the troop librarian and this year we are being very organized. He made a list of all the Merit Badge books that he has collected that others have used and no longer needed. I typed a memo for him to hand to everyone tonight, giving our telephone #, his email addy, and with the list of all the books available for loan. Also, in the memo we reminded kids to turn in their used books for recycling in the troop for others.

I hope this is a success. No one has ever done this before in the troop, and Hammer is really into it. Even after he completes his Eagle, he wants to continue with it. :-)

Tonight, Fuzzy also has a handout for everyone. The troop is going to collect goodies/necessities for the troops in Iraq and Afghanistan! A friend in town is working with an active reservist to get all of the items distributed to those in need of some Christmas cheer! A worth cause for sure!

I am proud of both the boys! And, even Pumpkin will be there tonight helping hand out the memos! She envisions herself as the Troop Mascot. lol

Those who have been reading me for a while will remember that I have been going to Atlantic City with my mom on her twice yearly business trips for a little over a year now. I went to her May and November 2007 trips, and the May 2008. The November one is coming - November 14th! Yay!

This is the busier and more hectic of the two conventions. In May, all the convention is held in the hotel where we stay. This November one we have to shuttle back and forth between the hotel and the Convention Center. Two of my mom's friends are partially disabled and need to use scooters which are rented at both locations. I wil help with the shuffling.

As you can imagine it gets hectic. You have to check in the one you are using at the hotel and get a receipt. I usually stay with them and do that while mom runs to get a taxi ready and waiting. Then, we shuffle with cane and what-not to the taxi and repeat the process in the reverse at the Convention center. Of course the places you pick-up/drop-off the scooters is never right next to the door. Sheesh.

I am very happy to help! I love my mom's friends, they are all like additional mom's/grandma's to me. My mom is the spring chicken of the group at 63 (on November 8th). The next friend is 75 ish and 2 are in the 80's! Brilliant determined women all. Tax collectors, Chief Municipal finance officers. Some retired, some not.

Of course those are just the women we have adjoining rooms with and do our traveling with at the convention. There are many more that are my mom's clients or friends that we meet up with for meals during the week. It is really a nice time. Busy, but fun.

I am looking forward to it - as you can tell!

be well...

Monday, October 13, 2008

Free Falling... not

Someone online had asked about taking those 'chemo type' meds for my Rheumatoid Arthritis and if I had ever tried them. I don't remember who asked... maybe my Sangria friend, Linda? Maybe, but I do remember that I didn't answer.

I do, in fact, take one of those medicines. I have in the past taken several; some that worked, some that didn't.

The best one I ever took was Remicade, which was given in a montly IV infusion. It was the best. Unfortunately, at about 10 months into the treatment, my body began to have an allergic reaction. After two months of trying to work around that (by dosing me with steriods via IV and benedryl) the allergic reaction progressed to chest/breathing discomfort, hot flashes, and we had to stop as anaphylaxis (or my throat closing) was probably next.

I also tried Orencia - also a once monthly IV infusion, but it didn't work that well and I had horrible mouth sores the entire time I was on it. Imagine constant cold sores. Ack. It was NOT fun.

I am currently on Enbrel, which is a shot that you give yourself at home once a week. It is similar to Humira which you also give yourself at home.

In addition to that shot, I also take 2 other immunosuppressive drugs, methotrexate and plaquenil. For some reason, Rheumatoid Arthritis and its ilk, respond best to this 'cocktail' type approach. My lupus is supposedly in remission, which is good.

What prompted me to do this entry tonight? Well, it was two commercials I saw on tv for Rheumatoid Arthritis drugs. One was for Enbrel and one for Orencia.

The Enbrel one annoys me everytime I see it. Oh yeah - take Enbrel and ride bikes and hike and run and be just great!! Pffft.

The Orencia one was by far the better commercial, MUCH more accurate in its description of what it can and will do for you. It showed a woman in her 40's like me (except she was all skinny and cute, the bitch, but that's hollywood!) just happy to be able to do simple things. Open a big jar, cut up food, hold the steering wheel not so painfully, button her clothing easier, etc.

I shouted in my head - YES! That is it! The TRUTH! MOST of us on these drugs are just happy to get that. Just being able to do stuff with our family, take care of simple personal needs, and live. That's it.

Oh maybe there are a few who feel so wonderful that they can do all those super active things in the Enbrel commercial - and yippee for them - but that hasn't been mine or most people's experience with these diseases.

I have been emailing with a group for 4 years, and none of us, despite the multi-medication cocktails can do any of that. Not anymore. Some are more active than others, but all of us struggle.

All of us have had flares so badly (even with the meds) that we can barely get out of bed. Many of us take our morning meds and watch the clock as we wait for the relief to start to kick in.

And, yes, I also drink my beloved coffee to help jump start the ole' bones!

Most of us, including me, take really strong anti-inflammatory meds each day, too. And, pain killers. And, many of us prednisone.

I am lucky that I am not on the prednisone, but it is a double-edged sword. My life day to day would be better on it, but it's side effects will harm me more in the long term. Long term use usually brings diabetes and kidney problems and brittle bones.

Not that I am without side effects now. The Enbrel and the methotrexate tire me out. Only for a day, better than full chemo, but it is there. The methotrexate also sometimes upsets my stomach. The plaquenil has dried out my skin and made me ultra-sensitive to sunlight.

My dad often complains that I should just stop taking all the medications, because they don't work. But I know they do. I would barely leave bed at all without them. Even worse would be the internal damage to my joints which they aren't stopping completely, but they have slowed to a crawl.

Living with Rheumatoid arthritis is hard, but thanks to these drugs we are living with it now. It no longer is shortening life spans by ten years or putting you in a wheelchair by sixty. I'll take that.

It is an invisible disease though. And, sometimes it is hard. So, when you see a woman or man who looks too young to be in the handicapped space or using a motorized chair/cart at the store - think twice before you judge.

It may be me or one of my pals, having a bad day and just using the tools out there to make our lives easier.

Oh my... I have really rambled on haven't I? Thanks for reading if you didn't start snoring halfway down! LOL

be well...

Columbus Sailed the Ocean Blue...

... And never set foot actually on mainland North America, but hey - that's neither here or there - a day off for kids and Hubby is welcome!

Today we went out to our townie restaurant for breakfast together and that was nice. Hubby and Hammer put up the Halloween decorations too. I will show you pictures sometime this week.

I am looking forward to this week being less hectic than last. I can hope anyhow! Fuzzy at least is no longer struggling with his asthma. We have that back under control.

Dinner tonight smells delicious! Pasta with homemade sauce - called Orrichette di Parma. It is the pasta that looks like little 'ears' called orrichette, and then a fresh red sauce with fresh garlic and crumbled, browned, italian sausage added. YUMM-O to quote Rachael Ray! lol This is one of my favorite dishes that my dad makes for dinner.

Hubby and Pumpkin are now going outside to through the football around! A perfect fall activity! It is a little warmer today though... I like when the temp stays below 70 degrees!

Oh and tonight the Giants play on Monday Night Football and try to go 5-0!!! yay!

Hope everyone has had a great day off or beginning of your week!

be well...

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Philadelphia Freedom

Wow! I have more new followers! Yay and welcome!

Thank you for all the compliments on how spiffy my blog looks, however, I cannot take any credit! That all goes to Dan, who literally walked me thru each and every step of creating a blog, then he found me a coffee template, walked me thru putting the new template on, and then helped me to edit the blog! Yay Dan!

You should all visit Dan here:

So, Philly was fun! We arrived there about 10:30am and parked beneath the visitors center.

After walking through the visitors center, buying tickets for Independence Hall for an afternoon tour, and collecting the maps necessary for the day, our group of 19, yes 19 - set out! We had 9 adults and 10 kids.

First stop, the Liberty Bell! She is a beauty! She was affixed the top of the Pennsylvania State House, now Independence Hall, in the 1750's. Next, we visited Ben Franklin's ghost. You asked Ben questions and his 'ghost' answered. Very cool.

Next, the building that was our first bank, now a portrait museum. It held many portraits of the men who were brave enough to start this little 'experiment' of freedom!

Everyone was hungry then and we ate in the food court at the Bourse, a building that was originally one of the first foreign banks back in the 1800's.

Next, we headed to the Underground Museum. All about Ben Franklin! The outdoors has the foundations of his house, and a layout showing were his print shop would have been. There are some original buildings there also. In the museum we saw a film on Franklin and viewed many displays.

The boys earned a special merit badge on Ben Franklin.

Betsy Ross' house was next! Yay for Pumpkin Muffin - she was waiting to see that all day. A great glimpse into colonial life and the life of an extraordinary woman and patriot. Often, the sacrifices women make during way is forgotten...

We needed to race about 5 blocks to Independence Hall to make our tour! Yeah - I started hurting then. It wasn't pretty from then on, but I persevered! lol

Independence Hall, Congress Hall, etc, was fabulous. The kids loved it and the National Park Service really brings history alive! The speakers were great and very kind to us as Scouts at all the locations we visited!

One last destination to complete the day - Ben Franklin's grave at Christ Church. Another 4 -5 blocks... ouch, but we did it. And were a bit let down! You can only stand outside the gate of cemetary and look in - yep, there it is. Oh well.

We headed to the gift shop and did a power shop as they were getting ready to close at 5pm, then into the cars.

Thank heavens for GPS, we headed back into NJ and went to Cracker Barrel in Mount Laurel. We skipped the cheesesteaks as everyone decided they were tired and wanted waitress service. Plus, we don't get Cracker Barrel where we live, so it is a BIG treat!

We sat in groups but all together and had a great meal! Got a few candy goodies for the ride home and headed to the NJ Turnpike.

Arrived home about 9pm and we were tired, but what a wonderful day! We had perfect weather and saw everything we wanted to see and then some! Of course, there is always more... next time.

Today, I am sore, limping and tired, but no rest for the weary! I am headed to the bowling alley to watch the kids bowl with Hubby!

I will be back later to read all your blogs!

be well...