Ten Years….

It was ten years ago today.

Remember it? Wish I could say I did:it was pretty much a whirl to me. I remember tripping coming up the aisle( AS IF I could ever forget that!),sitting in those big red velvet chairs at Mass, Jim walking on my train and hearing seed pearls go crunch, coming out of a “coma” on the Atlantic City Expressway and a few other choice tidbits….

Happy tenth anniversary to the Shingleman ….can’t remember life without you!



Sutures for a BFF

One of my BFFs, Juls, is taking a page from book.

She is having shoulder surgery Friday.
** working the beads**

Being in the big city with a lot of university hospitals, and being an old pro with doctors, well, let’s just say I don’t care for pain, especially when it wakes me from a sound sleep.

I know surgery is scary, but know you’ll hold a good thought for Juls on Friday.it’s always good to get your health back.


Rough for a Monday

I don’t know if it was the fact that I know next Monday is a holiday or what,but I just seemed to go in slo-mo today. As if my mind  didn’t want to join my body for that party called work..lol.

Knowing my history with caffeine, I struggled through one cup of coffee and the rest of the day I was wishing for toothpicks to keep my eyes open. Why is it that the anticipation of a holiday seems to make the prior week go really slow? At least it seems that way to me.

Here’s hoping your August wraps up neatly!



Spending Sunday watching the weather channel and seeing the preparations for Tropical Storm Isaac, which is hitting Florida as I type this.

I remember the preparations for Hurricane Katrina. It is mind-boggling, watching the change in the weather and the extreme swings possible. You can only feel for the people in New Orleans, as I see on the weather station are in an alert status. Can those folks be going through issues thinking back to Katrina? I know if I had gone through it and survived, I’d probably be a basket case.

Sending my prayers up so everyone comes through this dance with Isaac as unscathed as possible.

Loving this August day..

…a little overcast, a little light rain, a ton of walking and most importantly..breezy!

I always have enjoyed the anticipation of hurricanes, and turned into a weather maniac watching the Weather Channel and following sites on-line. I have always been intrigued by what happens as the storm works its way up the coast, the early “knocks on the door” of barometric pressure changes and storm fronts.

After all, it’s hurricane season: it’s August!

Quiet Friday

It was nice to have some quality time with the girls today while getting ready for the weekend. There were plenty of chores to do and it was so easy to have interspersed dog life with household chores. Zush even got a bath this morning to ease itchy skin, so she got an oatmeal shampoo .

We shared a wonderful dinner tonite with our friend Vida and her Mom at the Lobster House. We had broiled shrimp stuffed with crabmeat and it was fabulous. A pitcher of adult beverages accompanied it and the meal and the company and the meal gave a whole new dimension to summertime and the living is easy!

Have a great weekend!


Friday five

Am I ever grateful for my BFF ‘s….they are true pillars of support…and it’s great because they KNOW who they are.

God gifted me with a great Dad for thirty eight years. I have missed him terribly for the past fourteen years and will love him forever.

I am grateful my nephew Greg has the chance to start another year at Temple university. He makes our family so proud.

I am absolutely grateful for a good night’s sleep: I only wish they came more often.

Finally, especially after seeing what my Mom went through, I am grateful for my memories: I hold them all close to appreciate the comfort they bring.

Have a good Friday!


Another friend gone…

My Zusher lost another pal.

Her girlfriend Paint, who was with her from day one when one of my BFF’s Kath fostered her for SPCA.  Paint and Zush lived with Kath’s number one dog, Jupiter.

I always said Zush learned from the best, and she did. Paint and Zush were well schooled, and the two girls were tightest of buddies, and they both loved Jupiter.

Well, Paint, I found out today, has joined Jupiter at the Rainbow bridge, which makes me cherish every moment with Zush more, as if that is possible. They were a helluva trio, and I like to think Kasia is learning from the best, my gal Zush.

There is a void where the two buddies were, and I know someday she’ll see them again, but there is still work to do here, like keeping Mommy’s secrets, loving Daddy and tolerating Kasia.

Love her to pieces, and I know she joins me in saying rest in peace Painty puppy. We’ll miss you!


I was going to post last night, but I feebly wrist/wrestled with sleep.

Sleep won.

I had three good cups of coffee on Monday at work and a diet coke. When did this excess caffeine decide to bother me? Eleven at night Monday night.

Symptom? Itching…

I think I slept for fifteen minutes on the hour between eleven at night and four in the morning.

Watch out, world…I am rested today! Lol ;D


Kasiagirl…the saga continues

Well, I figured out how to reward Miss Kasia for coming out and being around people.

When we had “the big event” weekend, if you’ll remember, she was keeping pretty much to herself and even hiding. What would bring her out of her shell, if you’ll forgive the turtle reference, was a walk.

A big one….

A 4.2 mile walk roundtrip. Just Kasiagirl.

Quality time with Mom. Whoo-hoo!

Zush was sadly excused because I knew the distance was going to be rough for her, so she stayed behind, pouting until we returned. I am sure that having Kasia come back and run to her, as if to say,”nyah-nyah!…I got to go with Mom and you didn’t.” was not taken too well, although Zush’s pout disappeared when we came back. For the record, Zush got some prime Mommy time and was most appreciative.

Love my gals and am blessed to have them!

It was twenty years ago today…

…or so the beginning to Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club band goes….but for me it was 28.

Twenty eight years ago, this T Rex of an employee was green around the gills, walking into the  first day in a big government agency scared half to death. By the grace of God, here I am 28 years, 3 cancers, plus Shingleman, minus parents later, and I am still here.

Go Figure.

The benefits I received from this job saved my life, for I surely would never have been on a protocol for my first cancer. The friends I have made and KEPT along the way are choice-with them I am truly blessed. So today I am tuly thankful to those who guided me to the finding of this job, guided me during my early years, and on the bad days, guided me away from darkness.Those of you have been with me along the way know the road has been bumpy, but it has been great sharing the bumps along with you.


New obsession

While winding down the “Big Event” weekend, I wanted something a little different to do, basically to give my soul some comfort.

When you knit with a 100% pure wool yarn, you are able to felt.Basically felting is taking what you make, and then you wash it and the wool takes on a feeling of felt. It also helps keep Mom with me, as she taught me how to crochet and basic knitting stitches.

As this is my first 4 day week,after two 3 day weeks, I figure I’ll have something to keep me thinking. I will post the end result when done.

Have a good week!



The ” Big Event”, as Shingleman liked to call it, is over.

When you have nine people in a house where everything you do is geared for two,well,let’s just say it’s a job. It was a nice job, but one nonetheless .

I like to entertain, but I am more of a family/dogs gal. I am blessed with compassionate friends, two of which came out to the big event. Their presence made it even more special.

Now, saluting the past and spending the present catching up with sleep!


Ode to salt water taffy

One of my BFF’s, Kathy, was back in work Monday, after spending time at the Jersey shore. She brought salt water taffy back, from Douglass candies, on the Wildwood boardwalk .

Ah, Wildwood and childhood summer!

I remember we would go there, Mom and I , and my Mom would buy the biggest plaited white mint. It was the size of four ponytail braids put together.Mom said my grand mom, or Babci, would love it. I remember the salt water taffy. They would have the molasses taffy and form it into a paddle pop and then dip it into dark chocolate.

When I was at my desk, I unwrapped a lime piece, as it was a favorite flavor for me and Dad, and a molasses piece also. Ah, amazing what the taste does to memory recall.

Those were the days!


Trauma weekend for Kasia

The trauma is all in her head.

My Kasia was ok until my sister-in-law and her husband came over tonite.

Did I mention Kas hates change?
She is a product of a rescue, and her foster mom treated her well, but whatever her first owners did to her, well, my girl gets very reclusive. It’s a shame, as Jim’s family loves her,yet she is a bit stand-offish…to her credit, she is getting a little bit better.

We just want her to be a social butterfly. Doesn’t every parent? Lol


Kicking on back….

…which is easy on year old titanium knees….lol

I have taken a few days off in anticipation of the Shingleman and what he calls “the big event.” Part vacation in that I get to actually get to sleep until 8am for a few days, part entertaining the Shingleman’s family, which is nice, and the rest, well, we’ll just roll with the punches…

The weather is irrelevant, because family will be all together, and having my brother left on my side, it’s a little bittersweet that there are not that many folks left on my side. Being with Shingleman’s family makes me appreciate them even more, as no one knows what tomorrow brings.

Looking forward to a nice couple of days..**here’s hoping**

Betty Crackpot

Hanging in a little later tonight, watching Iron Chef America in order to have baked goods cool.

Betty Crackpot is at it again.

We are having a Shingleman family gathering, to honor his late Dad’s memory. My sister-in-law is helping me with putting a meal or two together for the gang. The problem with baking is keeping Jim away from the baked goods. This time I made an almond pound cake and chocolate chip cookies. Something about a boy/man in a kitchen for longer than normal-all you hear is a quiet munch…. 🙂

“I only ate the broken ones.”….famous last words!


Cell Block View

It was a beautiful day today.
It was the kind of day that you needed to be out in….of course, after work..lol.

My building is a beautiful old building, housing various contemporary offices during its’ current lifespan . When I first was hired, 28 years ago, the building I worked in had beautiful big windows like this: of course, being a government building, the windows were always filthy.

The current building is privately owned: I keep the blinds up to savor the natural light!


After the rain

After two days of storms off and on, today has been a beautiful day.

We went out for Mass this morning and for the first time in a while,the Church’s air-conditioning literally froze me out…what a pleasant surprise that was for me, because it seems that I have been sweating since April.

We are wrapping up the week-end anticipating next week-end with Jim’s Mom and family.

Good times ahead!


Soggy Saturday

What is it about the rain?

Farmers and their families pray for it, when it rains too much, people get depressed, and people in Seattle have a ton of it.

We have had rain last night and today. The earth gets so scorched, so how can you not be happy to see it?We still go out and the girls and I go for our walks, but we are definitely doing a lot of inside stuff so far. Jim and our friend Mike are out, so I made some chocolate chip cookies for them when they come in. I even went out and got my hair down today…so for people who say there is nothing to do in the rain, well,..

…there’s always something!

Friday Five

Today, we are actually seeing some rain. I am so thankful for that…riding in the car today, saw a lot of fields that are shot due to the heat.

We have our friend Mike with us this weekend. It is great to have him here. We love each other but always nice when someone else provides entertainment. 🙂

The month is August, and it’s almost fall…YAY!

The amount of sweat I am putting out doesn’t seem life threatening, lol, and I seem to be handling it ok!Just don’t sit next to me on the train..I tend to be a little wet.

Good friends, a home, the girls are well…

All is good, thank God!


Bittersweet Pleasure

When I come and go the office, my train is called the Norristown line.

For four years, I’d hobble with my bad knees, sometimes to the bus when caregiving for Mom, but ALWAYS in a hurry leaving the office. There was a husband to talk to, and also care for, fur children to take for a walk, and of course, chores to do. When it would be my night at Mom’s, I’d have to hurry to relieve the caregiver .

When I got off the train, it hit me. I was in the next chapter. Mom has been gone for 2 1/2 seasons. I can take my time walking home to my family. I don’t mean to make it sound that I don’t want to hurry home to Jim and the girls: I do. It is the highlight of my day.

I just realized the mad dash of caregiving being done equals a leisurely walk home.

Truly, a bittersweet moment…..


PS-I used a shot of Shingleman for this post….he’s my rock and reason I come home!

Missing folks

I was talking to a friend today, and the usual melancholia set in.

It’s August. When my parents would take us vacation, it has the memories of a good era. It’s also when my Dad took his vacation to heaven, on August 24,1998. It’s been 14 years. I do admit that thinking of him going on vacation was comforting. We traditionally went on vacation the last week of August, so thinking of Pop going on vacation was a help,

It doesn’t make me miss him any less.I know he’s with me, though, every day.


How hot is it?

I am home with the girls today, trying not to let my allergies get the best of me.

The girls and I are under the fans and we have the air on. It hasn’t stopped me from non-stop sweating. This is rough, as I am an October girl; that is, I live for 60 degree weather.We go out for walks, but they are quick, as it seems to take awhile for us to rebound from the heat.

Come on, autumn!


Olympic Volleyball(women’s)

So the Phillies game is over, and we are kicking back in the air-conditioning, watching…..Women’s Beach Volleyball.

I figure it is something that would keep Jim’s interest….haha! For instance , “why are they wearing bikini bottoms?” while the Czechoslovakian gals are wearing tights…Hmmm … Don’t know Jim. I laugh as I type this, because Jim has gotten into this, commenting on their moves and occasional ” wow”…also, ” her crack is showing.”….Lol…”what’s the temperature there?”

At least when I watched men’s diving and swimming, I kept my thoughts in my head. It’s not that I mind it~ I actually think it’s cute. Nice to know Shingleman still has an athletic eye!


Quiet is good

Sometimes, quiet is good. Today, Sunday, is one of those days.

It’s a beautiful day, here at Undisclosed. Zush and Kasia have been out with me and the heat, married with the humidity, is stifling. We take our chances and go out a little at a time. Jim and I are getting ready for lunch, and maybe a trip out ourselves: too warm to subject Zush to the heat.

Here’s hoping you are relaxing, staying cool!


Difference a week makes

This time last week, I had knots in my gut and couldn’t relax. It was as if I had grit my teeth all weekend.

Well, this week behind me has me here at Undisclosed, and I couldn’t more relaxed.

I went for my walk with my friend and we went down to the ferry and back. Jim and I went to 4 PM Mass so now? A beer, a little dinner, walking my girls ….life is good!


Friday five

My godson/nephew Greg has been my right hand this summer. From meeting me once in a while at the train, changing my flag out front, to taking care of mom’s lawn…I tell him constantly how thankful I am, and I hope he knows it!

The lousy heat has raised its’ head again. I am grateful to be employed and cashing a check that allows me an occasional iced coffee splurge.

I also am glad and thankful for my faith: my parents were with me in a dream-I know they are together and happy!

It’s August, and it is our anniversary month: I am blessed to have my Jim, even when he is freezing and I am sweating to death! 🙂

In closing , thank you, reader! I am glad you’re here.



Despite prior years of dermatologist visits, I had no choice but to work on my tan. I, thanks to SEPTA, waited for a bus to go make a doctor’s appointment. While I waited a good 45 minutes, the sun was playing peek-a-boo and I felt that all was missing was baby oil!**joking**

Went to the doctor, and got some of my medicine adjusted. Jim and I go to the same physician, so part of the issue is how to get rid of our hacking that we are doing.

Rest is on the agenda. We are going to step away and relax and revel in the Undisclosed.

Sometimes, you just need it!


Turning a corner

After a really crappy turn at work for the past month or so, I walked home from the train tonite with a feeling I haven’t had in a long time-peace!

What a difference compassionate friends have made: I may not have a ton of friends but the ones I have are fabulous. I am truly blessed. They are there for you no matter what, and I know they know I am there for them.

Life is good, especially when you make it over a mountain.



As we slip in season to late summer, another transition occurs-the Olympics.

It is a comfort to me, to watch the aquatic and gymnastic events. I was never an athlete, but how I remember the junior high and high school years…sitting on the sofa with one or both my parents, watching in amazement their athletic accomplishments. I watch them now, with gift of years, and recognize no names. Gone are the Mark Spitz, Cathy Rigby, Dave Wattle, and Bruce Jenner of my youth. I will learn the new names, and appreciate what a young body can be trained to do.

It makes me appreciate my seat here even more!!

Go. USA!