Dark Clouds

Whenever I seem to post something on Facebook, I often have a comment or two made by people who always have seem to have an “answer” for everything.

President of another party that isn’t theirs? “Not my president.” Things happening to friends of yours? “What did they do to cause it?” It gets to where I don’t necessarily want to stop people from posting on my Facebook wall, but it has given me reason to shy a little bit away from Facebook.

I got news today about someone in my life who is ill.That is all that I am going to say about it, because sometimes that is all that needs to be said. It does give me reason to wonder about the people who would comment, and what would happen to them if they, God forbid, became ill. I am sure the cause would be everyone’s fault but theirs.

It is hard to see friends combat illness. What even makes it more difficult is when there is physical distance between people. It would be nice to be able to help out, but unfortunately, help can only be offered from a distance as best as friends can. Sometimes prayers and good thoughts on one end are appreciated, and sometimes, people just need someone to listen to them and their problems.

Anyway you slice it, caregiving long distance is still caregiving. Granted, it’s not “hands on” caregiving, but the care is there, just the same. It is what friends do for each other.

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Happy Birthday Mom!

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I’d like to think that the temperature is divine in heaven, so this picture I picked for a blog for Mom would be pretty good, even though it’s December.December 18th would be Mom’s 94th birthday here on earth, but I am sure there is a good time going on in heaven, complete with her family, my Dad, my niece and her friends.

I miss my Mom every day.At this point of my life, I think back mostly to the last 5 years of her life when she had the subdural hematoma and lapsed into dementia.That Mom was so different from the Mom who took care of me as I grew up. I have good memories of childhood, but the last years of Mom were an experience I’ll never forget. I got to see a different side of her, to experience a different side of her, and in a way, it was like coming full circle.

I miss you every day,Mommy and will love you forever.

Dreary is as Dreary Does

The girls and I managed to get out for a couple of times walking before the rain came.
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We had been doing pretty well until the rain came. We managed to get out a few times and visit some friends, but then, we came in about 2:30pm and within a half hour, the heavens opened up. We are going to try to get out before it gets too dark, because I think the girls look forward to it as much as I do.
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So we may tip-toe through the raindrops, but we will go out for one last trip around our neighborhood tonight.After that, I think it’s safe to say we are all kind of sleepy, so we won’t be worth too much.At least us gals can snuggle together! What a treat!

With apologies to Simon and Garfunkel

“I was twenty-one when I wrote this song.
I’m 23 now but I won’t be for long.
Time hurries on,
And the leaves that are green turn to brown.”

I’ve quoted this song before in a prior blog.It has gone through my head today as my oldest nephew who lives in Minnesota is 39 today.

Thirty nine.

Where does the time go? I am retired, he is married and has two boys of his own.I used to go out and see him during the winter break from college.He was such a cute little guy and is a handsome man now.

It is so funny going into the retired chapter of your life. I thought I’d be retired, and I end up working.I thought growing up I’d be a Mom, and I have to fur children who I wouldn’t trade for the world.I never, ever thought that I’d be A cancer survivor let alone a THREE cancer survivor, thank God.

Time does hurry on.

I am thankful, on this thanksgiving eve, for every morning I get up with two feet on the floor. I am thankful for my family, but most importantly, I am thankful for my friends.

Happy Thanksgiving.
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Happy Birthday

I had the opportunity to call an old co-worker of mine and wish a happy birthday.

It’s funny, but we hadn’t spoken in six months, and although we are now coasts apart, it’s like we just spoke to each other yesterday. It was good to touch base and catch up, as we both have moved on a bit and it was good to hear the pace we are keeping ourselves at post-retirement.Our health has caused us both issues, but thanks to an excellent union health plan, we are managing to get through things ok.We left things where we did in January-we’ll keep in touch.

If you have someone who had a birthday, or is an old friend, or both, call them. It might be the boost in each of your days.

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Taste of Childhood Past

We met our friends in Wildwood yesterday afternoon and spent some hours with them catching up: we hadn’t seen them since this past November.

By the restaurant where we met was a candy store that has been on the Wildwood boardwalk from when my Dad was young.It’s called Douglass Candy.

In a shore resort town, people are awfully peculiar about their favorite spot to buy sweets when on vacation. For my family, we always went to Douglass for salt water taffy, creme mints, and molasses paddles.I have pretty much outgrown any desire for salt water taffy, and yesterday bought some creme mints. When my Mom would go in and buy candy to bring home when we were on vacation, Douglass used to make the white mint into a braid, and Mom would buy it for my Babci, her mother.They no longer make it, but the creme mints are good to have for an occasion quick fix for indigestion or sour stomach.

The thing I am chomping on right now is the molasses paddle. They put a 4 inch square of what basically is molasses salt water taffy on a taffy stick and then dip it in dark chocolate.We used to have to wait to take them home, and stick them in the refrigerator,where the melted chocolate, from transport in the car, would firm up and the flip side of this? You would have to bite down hard on the paddle, as the taffy was hard as get out.My molars weren’t really fond of this.

Fortunately,I live within striking range, and my paddle that I am enjoying now isn’t refrigerated, and the taste brings me back to the 1960’s and 70’s while in Wildwood on vacation. I can see my Babci waiting in the outdoor pavilion across from the store while we came out with our goodies and we happily went on our way.

Good times!

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Yard Sale

Went with my buddy today to a local charity’s “mega-family’ yard sale.

I have learned the glory and pain of yard sales over the years and also the angst of buyer’s regret or should-have.

There was a ceramic nut or candy dish that someone made.On top of it was my favorite from childhood; a squirrel. I went back three times looking at this dish. All I could think about was how much I wanted it, but it would be put up in the attic and I’d have to get Jim to get it for me and I really didn’t need more hassle in my life. I really wish I had gotten it though, as if you have been a frequent reader of these posts, you’d remember I had a love of squirrels from childhood.

I had wanted a summer handbag. Not a Vera Bradley, like I have, but a woven and burgundy colored one.This was something dating back to when I started working and splurged on a John Romain handbag and spent nice money on it. I wore that handbag every summer for many years and it killed me when it literally died. I found a Relic brand leather and woven handbag for $2. It’s a tight squeeze for my wallet but for summer, it’ll rock. I can’t believe that there was leather all over it! I also scored a 100% silk blouse for .50. I hand-washed it and it came up really well.I even got a new air of khakis for me for work for the princely sum of .50.

I regret that I bought ANYTHING for Jim, because he is**expletive deleted** when it comes time to buying or trying on clothes. I picked up a men’s 34 waist Banana Republic khaki short for him for .50. A brand new Izod polo shirt, tags and stickers still on it, retailing for $40 went for $5. Both wait for him here on the chair next to me.” I can’t try them on now:I’m working.”

**Watch me holding my breath waiting for him to try them on.”

Not bad, overall, and off in a little while to go swimming at a friend’s in ground pool.

Day three of three days off is going ok, so far…here’s hoping the rest of the day is uneventful!

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I just don’t get it.

I spent a few nano-seconds on why I can’t see people who I am friends with on FB anymore.

Seriously, people have real lives and don’t have the time to read every post written by everyone in addition to the lame-ass ads that advertisers and FB put in the way of a page or a post.

My former neighbors’ oldest just graduated 8th grade and thanks to the frequency of her dad’s posts, I get to see the two youngsters on a relatively frequent basis.Yet the other neighbors who moved away before we did, well, I have to find her making a comment before I even get a stab at seeing her page.

I am hoping that maybe I am just getting old enough to appreciate the fact that I really don’t NEED FB anymore: could that be the case?

Fishin’ Boat Lovin’

One of my best buds, Juls, has a very talented son, who records as Ty March.

Ty used to be part of the Capture the Crown band, and left them to go off on his own. He is blessed with a wonderful voice.He has tried his hand at writing more in a country and western slant, and one of my favorite songs that I was lucky enough to here him perform in person was Fishin’ Boat Lovin.Ty played it for me and Jim back in February and from the first time we heard it, we thought it had hit written all over it.

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He has been putting in his time and you can hear his heart and soul in his lyrics. He’s like something you can become addicted to and want to hear more and more of.Trust me, you will hear from him a lot in the future, and it will only be good!

To think I knew him when….***chuckling**

https://www.facebook.com/tymarchcountry?fref=ts

New kids on the block

While out walking the girls today, we came across two young girls who were 9 years old.

The one girl, Isabelle, the girls and I had met before during the winters’ snow.Her friend Lily was with her.They both loved Zush, who went over to them and sat on their feet and the other girl’s leg.Kasia,as usual, was skittish and kept her distance.They had recognized us as we walked over and we stopped on the way back to talk.They talked to me about so many different things that my head was spinning.

I, thanks to my nephews, knew Minecraft,and the other computer games the girls were telling me about.They talked about haunted dolls and burying dolls by the swamp,Nine year old girls? More like 30 year olds, I felt,after talking to them.I think I was still playing school and Barbies when I was nine.

It was a pleasant experience talking to the girls, if not an education.If anyone was the old soul in the conversation, it was the two of them.It made me miss my childhood for a fleeting moment.

Long Days’ Journey into Rain

It was a gorgeous day here today.

There was a slight breeze and I took the girls out for our 4 walks. We were enjoying the spring sunshine and breeze, but a funny thing happened during our third walk.

We were walking with my neighbor and her baby and while we were walking by the bay, a friend of mine was passing by.We met up with her in a few blocks, and she walked us back.She wanted the walk, she said, and we enjoyed her company.We all walked and talked and the walk back went by quickly.I felt bad though: my friend had a long walk back to her house.

I dropped the girls back at the house and I walked her back to her house.It felt good. Again, we were walking and talking, so it went by quickly.We said good-bye and I turned around and ugh! I had to walk back alone.Fortunately it was a pretty day, so it was nice.The weather is supposed to turn rainy tonight, so it made me want to savor the day.

I have to really thank Jackie Aschenfelter and the flip fitness class I took last year. Before I took this class, there is no way I could have done this walk. It was an awesome class and I miss my friends from it. Fortunately, I had the fit bit zip to follow it, and the magic number you see on the picture below shows a magic number I never reached before.

Thanks, Jackie!

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Buddies

I had a friend from the office who retired before I did.He’s 58 now, I think.We used to laugh about which of the two of us would retire first.He did,obviously, because he is older than me.

I bring him Holy Communion after Mass, as at 56, he had a stroke.He can talk, go to the bathroom, but he is having a lot of trouble walking.Now his hypertension is going through the roof and they are trying to knock it back down.

I usually don’t ask a request from you,reader,as I appreciate the fact that you have taken the time to read this post.If you would hold a good thought for my buddy Marc, I would really appreciate it.

Thanks.

Good night Sweet Prince.

A native son from my hometown of Roxborough went missing on the morning of Thanksgiving.

His name was Shane Montgomery and he was a 21-year-old college student.

He had seemed to disappear into mid-air and there had been a search in the area until January 3, 2015, when they found his body in the river in the area.No foul play: the death had been ruled an accident.

An accident.

I have three nephews who are now over 21 and I can not begin to fathom the pain and grief that Shane’s parents and family are going through.What is touching me even deeper is that I grew up two blocks from the mom’s family and know them from the neighborhood.When Jim and I got married and joined our parish, we became friendly with Shane’s Aunt Maryann and Uncle Fred.

An accident.

They found Shane the morning after I retired.I am now 100 miles away from my hometown and was unable to get there for the viewing and funeral.I was there is spirit, though.Tonight on Facebook, there was an even to light a candle for Shane. Yes, I did participate.To honor Shane’s memory, not to light his way to heaven because I truly believe he is there, and to send the candle flame to the Montgomery and Verbrugghe families.

Your son has become my nephew, and my heart is broken, as is yours.My candle is lit and my prayers are continuing for your family.

And Shane?

“Good night, Sweet Prince.”

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Biting me in the Butt

The finality of the move is getting to me in little ways.

I went out this morning for a walk to add to my steps and bought my BFF and maid of honor, Denise, a jalapeno bagel.It was probably the last time that I’d do that. When I was in college I had worked at Independence Hall for the National Park Service.The building I work in now, The Curtis Center, is across the street from it.When I was out getting Denise’s bagel I took a picture of Independence Hall. How many times in my life have I done that? Won’t be doing that too much any more.Actually I am glad I did that back in the day, because I can’t really tolerate crowds these days.

A few other things have gotten me: my first “retirement” card, my first person who was leaving work for vacation and coming back after I’d be gone…the change is starting.That’s what they say, right? Change is for the better?

All I know is that I have gotten to the point where the reality of it is biting me in the butt.

Another Saturday Night

..and we are off.

We are around the neighborhood tonight where our Property Owners Association is having a wine and cheese get together for us. They will supply the crackers…lol…

I made a nice tray of Asiago,Havarti,Colby,Feta,and some blue cheese.I am also bringing some spinach and artichoke dip and some hummus.We have some Scoops that we are bringing, along with some sesame crackers,too.**not having too much hope for the crackers they’ll have**

Jim worked hard with our friend to put up the metal handicapped ramp off the back deck, so now Zush and I have a way out back.I am sure that he is ready to kick back, and the fact that our friends are going to be there is very nice.We are quite comfortable with our neighbors, as we all are in the same boat, pretty much.

Hope you all enjoy your weekend. Stay well and safe.

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And the wayward wind…

It was a nor’easter today.

My friend Julie and I went through Cape May today and Cape May Point and we were dressed for the weather.It was still chilly though and the rain came and went and then showed up again. It was a classic rainy day at the shore and we were happy hanging out.

One of the things that we did was going to the Cove in Cape May: I love to try to take the shots of the sea crashing on the rocks.

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Yay for buddies!

Our friends Juls and Tim are here for the weekend and it is awesome!

We don’t get a chance to hang out with company and Juls is knitting, I am blown, our pups are playing and two of our pups are chilling. Tim and Jim and hanging out on the sofa and we are relaxing. So nice to actually kick back with buddies.

The weather is due to be a little wet tomorrow, but rain or shine, friends rock! We need to get together more often!

Laughing through Fitness

When September returned, so did my Flip Fitness class-boy did I miss it!

The wonderful thing about Flip Fitness is that you are exercising: you aren’t home, on a sofa, stuffing your face or out sitting on a bar stool. You are actually feeling blood move through your body as you exercise.Your lungs are exhaling when you start your seated crunch and inhaling on the way up…it’s a great class to get your feet wet when you want to take charge of your body again, especially if you haven’t been, of late.After you’ve been to a few classes, you start to feel the accomplishment reflected in your body.

Even more fun is that we laugh. Really.We do. We crack up between exercises and talk about our day, our spouses, our bosses and with the exertion of the exercise,the laughter is the cherry on top.

Flip fitness is through the area: leave me a comment and I’ll message you where I go and the times.

Trust me:you’ll thank me!You’ll have a good ache from the exercising, and a bigger ache from the laughter!

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Hanging Out

Down at Undisclosed, we had a chance today to kick back with a few of our neighbors this afternoon at the Property Owners Association building.

They held a deck party for us today and we had over 50 folks show up.Jim and I are active in the property owners association and know a lot of the folks from working the pancake breakfast.We went with a few of our neighbors and friends for a dinner of either chicken or shrimp lo mein, and fresh pineapple and watermelon for dessert.

It is hard for us to leave, because going back to the city is really wearing on both of us and we would be happy to be down here now.We wrapped up the party and came back home.The girls got their last walk of the night, and now, well, we are hoping we are able to sleep so we can wind up bright-eyed and bushy-tailed to head up to our work week.

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Circles

Joan Rivers passed away today.

So did my 96-year-old former neighbor who I used to bring Communion to on sick calls.

I reconnected with my 84-year-old former neighbor who has bounced back from lyme disease and Bells’ palsy.

My neighbors at Undisclosed are new grandparents of a little boy.

Isn’t life funny?
All the classic circle songs, from Joni Mitchell and Frank Sinatra, just to name a few, are true.

I enjoyed Joan River’s comedy and came to love my sweet 96-year-old neighbor and always loved my 84-year-old buddy.I have come to have love for my new neighbors and are happy at their new arrival.Arrivals and Departures…it reminds my of my favorite Albert Brooks movie,”Defending your life.”It takes you to the alleged fictional way station you go to when you die, and it is determined where you’ll spend your afterlife.

That’s not for me right now: I’m in no hurry to go anywhere, thanks!

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Social butterflies

One thing that we do down here at Undisclosed is socialize.

You see, there are folks like us who have no children, or their children have grown, are or have been caregivers, are retired or staring down out at it and wondering about pensions and medical expenses.

Jim had met a friend and since then,we have come to meet his parents. Max is Jim’s friend, and his parents are a sweet old Italian couple. We ended up having a visit for a couple of hours with them today. It was so nice and they were so sweet: it is so easy to feel comfortable with people like that. It made me miss my folks even more, especially with my Dad being gone sixteen years tomorrow.

I’ll never have my folks back, and I miss them every day. The visit with our friend Max’s parents, well, it made a lot of the sting out it.

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Sound of One Eye Clapping, Day Two

You never know what you have lost until you no longer have it.

Fortunately, I hope to have the vision back in my right eye eventually, but this eye being patched up while it is healing has been, pardon the expression, eye-opening. My friends who see me, well, people look at your good eye, but you can tell that the fact that I have one side of my face patched up, well, it’s uncomfortable for people to deal with.It is funny, because Jim and I were in church last week, and when we were at Mass, we saw an older guy who may or may not have lost an ear. Where his ear would be, it was covered with the same fleet colored tape as my eye is. Funny how that became part of my life a week later.

Going through the day has been a challenge. My depth perception is off, I walk as if I am drunk a little,Trying to cut food on a plate is weird.Things are definitely a little off in my world, right now.Trying to shower without getting the face wet is a trip too.

The grand unveiling of the eye is tomorrow night: we’ll see how it goes.

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Mentally Exhausted yet again

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I can get my feelings hurt,as all friends can do, when someone says, ” I thought you’d understand” “You of all people should understand.”

I really can only scratch my head and wonder when I have so many things thrown at me and I am at no where close to where things are occurring.

I try hard to be a good friend. Really. I do.

When there is some distance involved, well, it gets a little rough. I am not on the phone with everyone on a daily distance, so I have no idea as to what is going on. When you are a friend, it is a given that you are supportive. It is hard for me to be 100% in your corner when I have absolutely no idea what’s going on. I am the first person to admit that.It goes without saying, though, that I am in your corner, ok friend?

Penny Party Rain

It’s a rainy weekend here but it sure beats a rainy one back in the city.

My neighbor, Rita, is an officer in a senior citizen group here, and she told me and invited me to their” penny party” today that is being held in a local fire hall. Another friend of mine is going with me, so I am looking forward to an afternoon out with friends,

The rain is creating craters and lakes in the soon to be lawn that Jim has been trying to even out the past few weeks, so it’s off to Home Depot for add ons to the down spout gutters.

Stay dry!

A good tired.

I went to my Flip Fitness Class tonight and boy am I beat.

It’s a good thing: it gets me off the sofa and out of the house and with a bunch of friends and we are all in the same boat. What is really funny is that after we have been together for a while, we start laughing between each other and talking about stuff and it was nice to hang with folks like me.

I am glad that my friend Kathy got me into going to class.I am ready to go to bed once I finish this, because I am tired in a good way.

Menu Item

A friend of mine gave me an idea for the “pork” based New Year’s Eve party.

I made barbecue beans,which have ham and bacon in them, along with some vegetables to
balance it out. I’ll be babysitting it through the night and it’ll go with us to the party tomorrow.

No matter where you go or what you do, I hope your New Year’s Eve is a safe and happy one.
I thank you for following Thereisnosanityclause and hope you check in with me in 2014.

Happy New Year!

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This is my eight hundredth post.

I can’t believe I have been doing this long.

Today(12/19)is my nephew Gregory’s birthday-he is 24 years old today.
I lost two of my buddies to heaven.
Zush was younger and Kasia was a wee one when I started.
Mom was sick and still around and Bob and I were care-givers.
Jim and I lived in a different house.
I wasn’t this close to finishing out my first career.
Undisclosed location wasn’t even around.

It has been a while, and I need to thank you, my reader.I appreciate the fact you find this blog and open and read it.I am thankful for those of you who like the blog, leave comments, and even express your opinion on the blog.

Here’s to 800 more.

BTW, Happy birthday Gregory. We love you lots!

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Again?

I had a good friend in the office. We shared many things in common, including our Keurig coffee makers.
I would stop every day at her cubicle to check in, or if I was at the front desk, she’d stop by going and/or coming in from lunch.I considered her a bud.

I talked to her on Tuesday. She told me about her emphysema..she was a cigarette smoker who quit a while ago.

She was out sick on Wednesday.

I got a text on Friday that she passed away while talking to her daughter on the phone.

December used to be a joyful month for me. Losing two good friends in one month? I see why people feel the way they do about Christmas.

Rest in peace Lois….I will miss you!

Goodbye my friend.

I do sick calls for the Church.

I see three, maybe four people.One of them is my pal Sue.

After getting off the phone now, I have mixed emotions.Her secondary caregiver informed me they started her on hospice yesterday. She is getting morphine for pain every four hours.

**sigh**

Sue and I have talked about dying and pain and how she wants to see her Mom again, and the two of us believe she will.Being Catholic, it’s one strong belief we both share.She could talk about it to me, because we know we could always talk about anything.We even kind of laughed about it, because the last time we talked about it, we chuckled that she would have the last laugh and one day I’d come down to see her and she won’t be there.

So I’ll go see her today, and Jim and the girls will go with me.I know in my heart that she wants to go, but as I type this, I know the emotions I have will be rough. I don’t even know if she’ll be awake from the morphine.

She has been a major part of my married life. She was a friend I could talk husbands with, talk dogs with, joke about weather girls with.

I always joked that when she goes to heaven, to help me out while I am down here.I’ll miss her, but she will always be in my heart.

Good Football game

So we watched our hometown team at our neighbor’s house yesterday:in hindsight,
I said we probably should have went straight home and they would have won.
It was a nice time to kick back with friends and hurl **expletive deleted**
at the screen in unison.

The girls got a good healthy walk at halftime from Mom, so we walked and got
exercise.They admitted to me that they wanted us to leave because they refused to
eat their food until we got back.

Topped off the evening with Miss America viewing**spoiler alert** and although I
was rooting for Miss Oklahoma, Miss New York won.

Now back to the grind…. have a good day!

Rough

I make sick calls for my Church, bringing Communion to those who can’t make it to Mass.

Last night I stopped first and saw my buddy Sue. What a rough visit.

Her condition is going downhill.Her husband, although he probably knows it, doesn’t say it.
So when he is out of the room talking to my husband, Sue and I talk about a lot of things.
Basically we talk about dying.

Her quality of life is getting poorer by the day. She was speaking of how she can’t get in
the car and ride any more.She can’t walk Eby, her dog.As ahe speaks to me, the tears fall
from her eyes. Her degenerative brain disease obviously hasn’t gotten to her emotions
yet, although she told me yesterday her eyes are starting to fail.

I did manage to make her laugh though.

We talked about her leaving and eventually seeing her family again, as is the belief or
the faith we share.I told her that one day I would come to see her and she wouldn’t be
there.I looked at her straight in the eye and asked her who’d have the last laugh?

She said she would, of course….and we both started laughing.

Hold a good thought , or say a prayer for Sue if you would, please.
It’s rough,leaving one spot behind.

Thanks…appreciate it!

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A good buddy on a downhill slope

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In prior blog posts, I had written about my friend with a degenerative brain disease.

She had been diagnosed about 5 years ago, and has been going slowly downhill, which has been
so hard for us who love her to watch.We hang in there with her though, because she, even in her illness, is a good friend.

If you can’t find the prior post, she is a former neighbor who made friends with me from the day I moved in,eleven years ago. Her fur-child is Eby, a beautiful male golden retriever. We used to tease about Zush being Eby’s wife-we had many a good chuckle over that. Fortunately Zush is spayed so no worries for me.

I can remember her illness coming on as if it were yesterday. Jim,Zush and I were with her and Eby walking the trail of the Wissahickon. She was complaining about feeling off-balance sometimes, which I said maybe the doctor would tell her it was vertigo.

It wasn’t

I always would walk up twice or 3 times a week when I lived on the block, and we would chew the fat for a while. As her condition has deteriorated, I kept that up,until when we moved this last month. Now I only get to see her once a week.

Yesterday was her 62nd birthday.

If you are of some free time, please throw up a prayer or good thought for my buddy. No one should have to go through what she is.

Weighing heavy on the mind

It is rough when you have a lot of life’s issues on your shoulders.

You depend on prayer and your faith, but what is it that gives you freedom from fear? A pretty strong faith! I don’t care if you are religious or not-good friends I am always thankful for, and I still need prayers so things pick up .

Thanks!

Friday five

This Friday I am thankful for the accomplishment of making it through some major trauma Although its a observation , as I am only a player in the band, the whole thing went too damn fast.

I am happy that’s it Jim’s birthday this weekend . I love him very much and the fur girls love him too…..

I looking forward to a break from overtime and just some time to my self to mourn the passing of a guy I worked with.

The weather seems delightful and I am sure we’ll be doing our share of walking.

I have made my way through Most of my life ok. God has blessed me.

Enjoy life: it’s too short!

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Toxic

One of my BFFs, Denise, had just posted on Facebook and I thought it was spot on.

It had to deal with it being comfortable and not guilty at the point of losing
toxic people in your life, no matter who they are, friend, acquaintance, employer,
fellow employee, whomever…

No one has the right to have you feel small or belittled. You have to do what feels
right or good for you.

This is a theory I can strongly stand for, and am going to make a conscious attempt
to do.

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Working things out…

So my life has become my desk, of late, due to a ton of work that has come in.
Basically, I am averaging 3 hours a night overtime; by the time I get home it’s 8:30.
It’ll have a reward in the long run, but it’s been a struggle to get through the day
to get home to Jim and the girls.

I love the fact that you end up with some off time in your mind,like waiting for the train and/or bus,
and you get to think things out. I have been going over some things and things seem to be pretty good,
albeit busy right now. Almost makes you wish for a slow day.

I am blessed with great friends: they may not be many in number, but they are worth gold to me.
I am blessed with a wonderful husband, who is right there with me not before or behind me.
I am blessed with being the age I am and taking care of the fur girls.
God has me where he wants me right now.
God is good ALL the time.

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Wine

Crossing into a wild frontier today, while we are at our friend’s home for dinner.

He just opened a bottle of Estancia 2007.. I can’t believe how smooth this wine is! It’s a 61 percent Cabernet Sauvignon , 27 percent Merlot and 12 percent petit Verdot !

Awesome!

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Holy Saturday

My nephew Greg just left. He came to pick up ham I made for them. I remarked how old I am: sitting here alone with the fur girls, watching Pope Francis I have the Easter Vigil Mass at the Vatican.

Jim is out painting our front fence, as we get the house ready to sell. Melancholia is quite overwhelming. This house had me busy on this day for the first six years, as I would be preparing for Easter. Then Mom got sick.

It is good to have good memories; it doesn’t make them hurt any less, but they are good.

A blessed Easter to you and yours.

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Lousy is as lousy does..

It has not been a good week.

Found out a friend of mine who was 2 years older passed away suddenly last week. I saw her at the beginning of the month and she was in a helluva better shape than I am in.

The coughing got a little quiet but not much, as both Jim and I are fighting it and it makes for the wrong kind of melodies going on in our house.

A good friend of mine is scheduled for pancreatic cancer surgery on Monday and I know the odds…

and to top it all I am missing my Mom a lot..

It goes without saying it is Holy Week and the Easter Tridium, and my prayers are going overtime on so many levels.

The hard part is I remember the line from the movie “Rudy”…” Man asks for God to answer prayers, and God does, in God’s time.”

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Hootenanny

Mike our neighbor is over.

We are listening to You Tube, Jim is playing his guitar and we are singing songs of our youth.

**the two shots of whiskey I have taken are the best cough medicine to listen and sing along with.**

It’s good to kick back, and the fur children always enjoy Daddy playing music.

Life is good!

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Sunday warmth

Didn’t have the chance to post yesterday.

Slow cooked a pork butt and had folks over last night for a pulled pork dinner that was too good, IMHO, although if you were to survey the guests, i don’t think you’d have any nay-sayers.

The previous typed paragraph is the reason that I am laughing,because I have Sandwich King on the Food Network as I type this and he is making a pulled Cuban pork sandwich…looks good, but I beg to differ.Sometimes a basic look at pork, albeit also slow cooked, is just as good. The one thing I am intrigued by, which I have to admit, is the place the Sandwich King visited on his show was putting freezer pickles on their sandwich: gotta find that recipe, because they sure looked good.

Jim is out with his friend Jerry so the girls and I are sucking back the heat and relaxing…a little later we’ll be juicing and probably sucking back the leftover pork for supper.

Stay warm and enjoy your Sunday!

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Rockin’ & Rollin’

We are out west at March Mountain, celebrating the end of the old year and start of 2013.

What is interesting is that my friend, Juls, has her son and his band, Capture the Crown, also staying here. I think it’s neat, even though I am a little old for Tyler and his Aussie band mates, they are great guys. It truly is a change- hanging out with a screaming band!

It’s good to be together with friends, and to share special times…laughter is great!

I’m blessed!

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Friday Five

It’s been a while since I did my thankful Friday five, but at year’s end seemed appropriate, so….

I have never been so happy to see a year-end, and that my immediate family and friends got through relatively unscathed. I am hoping that 2013 picks us all up and finds us well.Thanks God we got almost all the way through it.

Did I mention Jim? aka Shingleman? How blessed am I to have him in my life. We have been getting through things together for over ten years, and I can think of no finer guy to have in my life. He is my love and my rock.

I’ve had a few significant people pass out of my life this year, who were suffering with illness for a while. I am sad that they are gone, but they are, I am sure, in their heavenly reward. My life had been enriched from knowing them.

They always say friends are family that you pick yourself.You KNOW who you are-I am thankful you are in my life. 🙂

Finally,I am thankful to you, my reader. Hope you have a happy and healthy 2013.

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Apprehension

I am dreading today and am glad to be working .

Yes, it is Christmas Eve, but being of Polish descent, it’s when we ” did” the holiday .

So this is life after Mom’s death.

No Christmas pin can make it right. No Mom= loss. My heart is in my gut thinking of past Christmases.Dad was gone and now so is she.

It’s going to be a long day.
Hold a good thought, ok?
I need it.

Thanks.
Merry Christmas!

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Eels and Snakes oh my!

Thought I’d have a break in the reference to my psychology 104 class that I end up using everyday-the class was ” Adults, Adolescence and Aging”.

Talked to two of my BFF’s last night and after hanging up with them both, I am quite sure that they, along with me, were shaking their head laughing.

I am tired of saccharine, smirking folks. They think no one can see through their veneer, but guess what ? Your emotion has raised its’ ugly head, so we all get to see you and your five faces. Your neck should be tired carrying a head so big.

It’s Friday.

Thanking God I get a break out of here until Tuesday.

Have a great weekend!

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!

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!

 

Facebook follies…

So nice that people have nothing else to do with their lives but troll people’s Facebook pages so they can stir things up. Maybe they should start paying attention to their own lives and things might, God forbid, be going a little better for them and they won’t be so nasty to the rest of the world.
Just saying’……..

Friday Five

We are back to grateful Fridays….

I am so grateful for my girls Zush and Kasia: I saw on Facebook this morning that one of my fellow dog moms lost her greyhound, who was Zushs’ age. She passed in her sleep. Makes me savor the time I have with both my girls.

The reason I am at work today is I am giving blood. Nineteen years ago I beat my first cancer: hopefully donating my blood might help someone else deal with whatever issue they have.

I am so grateful to have my life, as twisted as it might be at times, and my buddies. There are folks I know that have NO ONE.

Iced coffee can not get enough thanks in my book: this has been the stepping  stone for my mornings in this heat.

Again, I am truly grateful to you, reader.Thanks for being there.

Drama- the saga continues….

So I truly laugh at people who can’t stand when you move on in your life.

I had something from my office past re-visit me. I really didn’t care about the issue, but evidently, it had one last gasp of air in it. I feel as though I was supposed to be upset, and disappointed folk when I was a little cavalier in my attitude. Oh well, eh?

I believe things happen for a reason, especially stuff out of your control. When things are over, they’re over.

What part of over don’t folks get? Glad my friends get it!

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A break from Undisclosed ….

This weekend, our scene will be a little different…we’ll be out in south central Pennsylvania visiting one of BFF, Juls and her husband Tim. We’ll be celebrating Juls’ birthday,albeit a week later.

The house is in peace and quiet heaven, and the gals are happy because they play with Ginger and Lily on March mountain; in fact, dog play will be a highlight of the trip.

Change is good: spending time with friends? Even better!

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Back to our spot

Finally made it back to the undisclosed location ,and the weekend went by too fast: don’t they all?

Shingleman just serenaded me through the screen on the accoustic guitar, the friends I have here had me back on the weekend walk, for which I am thankful , and Zush and Kasia got their walks and joined me in the peace and quiet. We dodged some of the heat, and all that’s left to conquer is traffic!

It’s good to be back!

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Worn out

Well, tomorrow is day four of jury duty. It has been awfully intense, but definitely a life experience .

They say change is good, and it is. I have made new friends and it is incredible what people do in a group to relieve the strain of a capital trial.

Tomorrow is another day: here’s hoping it’s a good one!

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Thankful Friday

This Friday has me thankful for a ton of things…. Here’s just a few….

Sitting in jury duty finds me so grateful I never was on the other side of the room, i.e.,the defendant’s chair- it is a scary place to be.

Also sitting in the jury box, boy, am I am glad I have a college education: it is daunting to sit there and comprehend what’s going on. It is hard enough, having the education that allows me to understand what’s going on, but you have to follow it too….

I am grateful for this current patch of cooler weather, which allows me to sleep better and wake up ready to go to jury duty.

I am grateful for my buddies in the office . I do miss them and being at the criminal justice center makes me miss them more.

Finally, this Friday has me thankful for my health, as you have to sit for long periods in the jury box, not run out of the room and back: thank God I can do it!

Have a nice weekend!

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Special Guest Star

It was weird going to the office today.

I was in town.
I went to work.
Monday and Tuesday I was in town.
Went to jury duty… Mentally didn’t count.

Tomorrow I serve on a jury. I am sure within the hour it’ll feel like work. I just pray that it goes ok. It is, as I mentioned in prior posts, quite a daunting prospect.

After 28 years with taxpayers? Hopefully I can handle it.

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Legal Eagle

Tomorrow the whole ball of wax commences.

My godson Greg Miziorko will meet me in the morning and we will ride the train together into town, albeit he gets off at Temple, one stop before mine.

Change is good,and sitting on a jury is a daunting experience. I hope my hacking will be calm, and the experience is good. My iPhone is permitted in, and it is not allowed on in the court room.However, below is a new pair of sandals I bought to celebrate!

Ally McBeal, eat your heart out !!! Lol!

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And so we start

So here it is.
Monday.
The first Monday without both of my buddies that retired.

Knowing it is going to take all I have, plus a ton of prayer and the strongest faith this side of the planet, I am going in to put my first x on the calendar . I will be offering big time prayers up that I can get out in one peace, and no it’s not a typo, for I have One gigantic heart full of peace and I would love for it to come with me.

Now if only things work out ok and my stomach un-knots, things will be ok.

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Thanks

A friend of mine was talking to me briefly today about my blog.His comments had me thinking about you,my reader.

I thank all of you, friends and strangers alike, who take the time to read this. What started as therapy for me while caregiving for Mom, I write now for the therapy and the pleasure of it. From Shingleman, allergies, caregiving and other daily thoughts, I would hope you enjoy reading this as I enjoy writing it. I would hope you keep reading: I promise to keep working on it on sunny and stormy days ahead, and for now, sending out warmest wishes to you, from the Wissahickon valley.

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Another Friday Five

With this being a really, really rough week for me, I had to dig deep for this week’s five things I am thankful for.

1. In thinking back to Mom’s last four years, I am thankful I still have my mind, although I know there are friends of mine who would argue that fact…lol. Watching someone you love and care about slip into dementia is a horrible thing. I thank God for every day that I can sit at this computer and put thoughts together in my head and they make it out to the screen in front of me.

2.I am thankful for (almost) all the men in my life, past and present. Shingleman leads the way, but my brother Bob, nephews Matt and Greg,” Mr.Mel”, my honorary father-in-law,JP, who became a friend from the moment I met him professionally but look forward to holding our friendship as we get a little older, Jamie Moyer, who although he is in Colorado, I had the pleasure of talking to him once on a corner in Center City and he really, really put class in the definition of athlete, and the guys I have loved and lost, or they have loved  and lost me….either way, I am wiser and stronger person for having the experience of knowing them, …I could go on and on…you get my drift, right?

3. I am thankful that I have a clean, made bed upstairs waiting for me to go to sleep in. Some folks don’t.

4. I am thankful for you all who read this blog: it is so uplifting to know someone is actually reading this and so far, almost all of you seem to think this is pretty good sometimes and I am not totally losing my mind yet….just kidding.

5.Butter krak and butter creme, hell, even coconut creme Easter eggs…after all, doesn’t chocolate solve all the worlds problems?  😉

 

Have a wonderful weekend!

Marian

Day off for us both

We are wrapping up a wonderful stretch of time here @Undisclosed, and hate to leave.

Jim had the morning off from his deli job, so with the rest of the day? It was awesome!

Pups were always walking, and I managed two days walking 4.2 miles a day with my neighbor friends. We saw friends and tried to relax and just hoped Jim’s pain gets better.

Hate to leave- can’t wait to be here full time!

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Wellness has a price…

Walked with an Undisclosed Location buddy today from our meeting spot down to the channel,which Jim has ball parked as 4.6 miles round trip. I feel really good , and a hot shower later, well, I think a little back and body Excederin are in order. I feel really good, but a little achy, so I think this might  be the ticket.

Walking down here calms me and clears my mind. I have two good buddies who I walk with and with Jim getting better, well, the girls have been getting good walks from Mom, so it stands to reason that I’d be less sore than from the beginning.

It’s good to be in motion again.After four years of classical bad diagnoses of torn meniscus and $80K in titanium knees later, I am coming up to the one year mark of my surgery. Best thing I ever did, or should I say, had to do.

 

 

 

 

On the flip side from yesterday..

…When I am at home with Jim, as opposed to watching my Mom at night, I get to ride the train into the office. When the train pulls into the station, I am able to walk underground up to a block before my office , so it’s not too bad during the winter.

I was walking through the mall area this morning when I came in, and walked by a Dunkin’ Donuts, where a guy, who I had recognized, had turned first, looked at me and said good morning. I, naturally, wished him a good morning back. I really don’t know this guy outside of riding the train for the past almost ten years, but the mere fact that he recognized me and spoke to me not only made me feel good, but started me thinking.

There are people I know from an almost daily commute on the train. Take, for instance, my friend who is a physician’s assistant at Hahnemann hospital. Do I know her name? No, as we sit in the quiet car every morning and on the way back. We pantomime our good mornings and smile, and when we are frustrated at something about the transit authority, we’ve been know to pass notes back and forth. An acquaintance from, of all places, my brother’s street, who, I am embarrassed to say, for as many times as I talked to him on the train platform, well, have never asked his name. Then there is Jim, who I have been getting the train with since I first got married-he works for the transit authority and loves to tell me stories, while waiting on the platform, about inspecting train tunnels..**shudder**..but, entertaining none the less.

Outside of maybe two handfuls of true “friends” that I have met working at the same spot for 27 years, I’ll miss these guys too. Not enough NOT to leave, but there will always be a warm spot in my heart for you all.

Oh, for my buddies Juls and Duch, here is a sunset of shot of my hopefully future transportation- the Ferry. 😉

A little apprehension…

..because my day did not start off too well. The highlight of the morning is that my cell phone is exactly where it shouldn’t be, that is, at home.Trust me, my friend, you do NOT want to hear what the low-light was. Now I have a Kcup of vanilla biscotti Folgers and a scone and I am feeling a little better..lol.

I have been suffering the past three weeks with some gastrointestinal issues. A good friend of mine who subscribes to this blog is in the hospital with gall bladder issues. Argh! Not the curse of anticipating retirement!!! Is it the fact that I am patiently biding my time to retire so now I am going to enter the wild wonderful world of GI issues? God, I hope not. With my cancer history, I have a wonderful gastroenterologist who practices at the Fox Chase Medical Center, so I get to make the trip all the way out to God’s country( that’s how it feels for me, who has to travel by train) and hopefully, the physician and I will begin to unravel what’s going on. I understand my buddy, Duch, has come out from her surgery well, and although I have been around the block once or twice, I hope that this “whatever” I am perking doesn’t involve that route.

It’s the end of November.

Here’s hoping December holds no surprises.

Getting ready to retire and….

 

…This is what I got today in the office, complete with a 23″ inch screen. I had laughed when I opened up one of the items that gets used on a daily basis by this government agency and the type had to be in 36 Font. I told the IT guy that this truly must be the computer for the old on the way out heads, because you never saw the font that large anytime or anywhere else.

I have been thinking the fast few days about this being my last Thanksgiving on the job. The last of 27 Thanksgivings and 27 Black Fridays. Will I miss it? Fighting shoppers on Black Friday morning in order to try to swipe in on time? No. I will miss my friends, though, and on this Thanksgiving week, not only am I thankful for them and my friends outside of the office, but for all of my friends and family. As twisted and dysfunctional we may all be at times, you all have a special place in my heart, and for that I am truly blessed.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Mar