Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Just which of us is the trainer?

We were having such beautiful weather for about a week. It really was exciting. Nice breeze, no black flies or mosquitoes yet, and temps were in the high 70's. The sound's of spring filled the air.  Birds singing to each other, wood peckers pecking away at a tree, and the buzzing from a giant bumble bee searching my doorway for a home perhaps? He was really big, guess it was winter weight that got the best of him.
Bumble bees don't frighten me like other bees, they just seem so docile. I guess if I was ever stung by one, I may change my mind, but for now, I will continue to enjoy watching as they bumble around in their flight to where only my imagination can take me.
  Spring is so beautiful in New England. Flowers are starting to bloom and the sky is so blue. My lilac trees are just getting their leaves. I love lilacs! They will always remind me of my mom, she loved them too. So many people had them in their yards when we were growing up, including us, that the scent filled the air. To me, that was the best part of spring. I prefer the lilac colored lilacs, but, I want a cluster of all the colors in my yard. They make such a gorgeous bouquet.  My niece Tiffany has them surrounding her house, I believe she is allergic to them, so, she invites us to go pick them all off the trees. Thank you Tiffany!
  But, this is New England and as the folks up here say, "Don't like the weather, give it a minute".
I suppose that more people than just me were excited over the spring weather. Maine being as wonderful as it is, got a little nippy last night. It got down to 22! Twenty -Two! It was down right cold!
  When I took the dogs outside this morning, I was a bit saddened after seeing what they were sniffing at. It was the big bumble bee lying dead on my porch. Of course, things like this excite my dog Lily. If it will fit in her mouth, she will try and eat it, but, when she snuffed out, the bee rolled of the porch.
 Lily has a really playful spirit. Watson is playful too. In fact, he doesn't care if you are tired of playing, he can amuse himself, he will take his ball and throw it up in the air and run after it.
Lily wants you more involved. She will act out if she wants your attention and you aren't giving it to her. She always has to grab something to show you as she waits for you to come into the house. It is usually a stuffed toy of hers but, she has brought a can of veggies, a sock and even something more embarrassing from the laundry basket. To her, the world is one great big dinner plate and she becomes very offended if Leah or I have to reach down her throat and take out the cotton ball she's stolen from the bathroom or the pen from my purse.
Since I am unemployed for the moment, my dogs and I are pretty much constant companions. Does this make them listen any better? Nope, not at all.  Sometimes, I wonder if they are deaf, but, open up a package of bread or the oven door and they come bounding, clearing anything in the path.
 They understand sit, stay, lay down pretty well. They know what off means, they just don't agree with it. They also know the word come, but, that one seems to elude them if they break free when they are outside.
 Just like your children, you want your pets to also behave when visitors come or when you are on the phone, unfortunately just like most younger children, that is the time when they try to get away with everything.
I saw somewhere on the internet that dogs can't love, that we are just putting human feelings in them. Anyone that has had a dog, cat, bird, rat, ferret, or whatever mammal for a pet, I am sure they will agree with me, of course they feel love. They also feel dedication, sadness and fear.
I for one am very grateful for the love they have for me. I love that Lily brings something precious to the door to greet me and that Watson jumps all around as if I just returned from the land of the lost even if I just went to put the trash outside, that when I have a rough day and am feeling lonely, they lick my face and cuddle up really close to me.
Watson is a "talker" he whines and makes soft barking noises to let you know what he wants you to do for him. Lily seems to be picking it up from him lately. They even smile, Watson's smile is a closed mouth but lifts his lips and shows his teeth and Lily is the open mouth smile.
 All in all, we are a good team. I think that perhaps they are really thoughtful too. After all, they do let me believe that I am the one doing the training...sometimes!

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Losing with Betsy ~ week 4

I have been so busy enjoying the gorgeous weather that I haven't blogged. So, this week Leah maintained, but, she is okay with that. She added more exercise. We track everything that we eat and are doing great with our choices. I am learning to adapt recipes to be healthier. I figure some will taste good and others we will wish we didn't waste the ingredients on.  We had just one of those tonight. They were chocolate mint chocolate chip cookies that were only 1 point for weight watchers. 1 point of ewwwww!
I surely didn't want to end the day with a failure, so, I tried something else. Chocolate mini muffins. They are really yummy! DELUMPTIOUS! They are also so very easy to make. Before saying eww gross, please try them. if you are craving chocolate, you will be happy that you did!
1- box of chocolate cake mix
1- 15  oz can of pure pumpkin
2- Tbsp mini chocolate chips.

Preheat oven to 325. Spray mini muffin tins with bakers joy or your favorite cooking spray for baking.
Mix the above ingredients together. drop by heaping Tbsp in the tins (makes about 30 - 36 muffins). bake until toothpick comes out clean. Mine was about 13 mins. (I have a gas oven that seems to run a little hot)
Let cool in pan a couple of minutes and then transfer to wire rack to cool. they are 3 points for 2 of them and they freeze great too.

Please try them and let me know what you think. My daughter and I were both really pleased by the taste.

  Leah made painted a tree on apiece of wood that every time we lose a pound, we glue a paper flower on to it. For each 5 pounds that we lose, we glue a button on it. The color of her flowers are teals and mine are yellows, so they complement each other nicely. I will take a picture of it and post it in the next couple of days.
Oh, this week I lost .8lbs! My 1 month total is 12 pounds! Yay! Okay, .8 pounds may not sound exciting, but, it is 2 sticks of butter. 2 sticks of butter gone from my body! I'll take it, gladly!!

I need to get some good sneakers so that I can exercise easier. I did a short jog with my dogs today, but, I kept getting pebbles in my shoes. I probably need something for walking in the woods too. I'm sure a pair of good sneaks would work for that also. I am very anxious to take the dogs and explore the woods around us. Anyone know a company that wants me to rate their sneakers?? ;-)

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Spring Is Here!!

 I've been very busy getting fresh air and getting the house and yard ready for the spring! The weather has been so beautiful. It won't be long until the bugs start waking up. I can see flowers are starting to come up in my yard! I can't wait to see what they are. I hope that some are daffodils and some daisies are mixed in. I love daisies, they are such a happy flower.
 This is the first spring here, so it is all a new adventure for me and the dogs. The dogs are having a grand time taking me on walks. They are finding new smells and can't seem to get enough of them. They continue to look up at me, so, I think they don't understand that I don't want to get down with my nose on the ground sniffing all over.
Because of the winter, we really haven't ventured to far out of the yard area, but, the house sits on two acres and there are paths to follow and many more acres to discover.
There must be a target range somewhere nearby. Every week end lately, we can hear the gun shots and it freaks my poor Lily out. She is over 80 pounds and decides she must be hidden on my lap. I feel so badly for her. I guess she won't be a dog to take to the fourth of July fireworks.
Spring always reminds me of my mom. God how I miss her! We used to plant flowers in my parents yard together until she couldn't get down on the ground anymore.  When that happened, she would sit on the stoop and watch and talk to me as I planted for her. Every year we always said the same thing to each other. "There is something so healing about digging in the dirt. All your problems and worries just seep right out of you, and calmness comes in" She loved the spring when she could finally open all the windows and "let the bad air out"
This is our fifth spring without her. It hasn't gotten any easier, I don't miss her, my dad or my husband any less. So many times, I want to call her and then realize, my phone company doesn't have any towers in Heaven. So, I just talk out loud to her as I am digging in the dirt and say you know Mom, there is something so healing about digging in the dirt...my voice cracks, the breeze carries my words away and as I wipe my tears, I pray that the breeze carries my words to my mom!

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Happy 67th Anniversary

Today is my parents 67th Anniversary. Happy Anniversary Mom And Dad.  He met her at a rollerskating rink. One of his buddy's had talked  him into going because supposedly there was a beautiful red head that he wanted my dad to meet. My dad had a fondness for red hair.
 My mom was already there and when she skated past my dad, he said he couldn't take his eyes off of her. He lost all  interest in meeting the red headed girl. I'm not sure what he did to get my mom's attention, but, he has always been a joker so what ever it was, I'm sure he made her laugh. If you got my mom laughing hard enough, she would always snort. ADORABLE...and HILARIOUS!
 My dad fell head over heals in love when he saw her, but, my mom was already engaged. So, they became great friends and would skate together. She was a bit of a tomboy back then and would do pretty daring things. My dad showed her how to jump off the back of a moving truck.  Of course, we could never do that! I'm sure that the truck wasn't moving very fast, but, still!
 The war broke out and my dad enlisted in the Marines. He wanted to let my mom know his feelings for her, but, when she told him that she loved him like a brother, he was crushed, and kept silent.
 He went off to war, and my mom with her sister Kathy moved to Washington, D.C. and worked in the Pentagon. (WOW, that always impressed me)
  She had written my dad a letter she had broken off the engagement with this "fella" and wanted my dad to come for a visit.
The base was having an inspection when the letter arrived, so,it was placed in his footlocker.  One thing lead to another and he had forgotten all about it.
They were going to be shipped out soon, so, he was packing and came across this letter telling my dad where my mom was and that she'd like him to visit.
  A bit of time had gone by since she had written the letter, so she thought that he wasn't interested. On the contrary! Obviously he went as soon as he had leave.
One evening when they were out to dinner, she looked at him and said "Are you going to marry me or what?" Still cracks me up to this day!
 Since it was lent, they had to get a special dispensation to get married. Since it was war time, they were allowed to do so, but, no wedding gown, no special music...On March 12th 1945, my dad in his Marine dress blues and my mom in a light blue skirt suit with an adorable matching hat, became one.
 It didn't matter to them that there wasn't anything fancy, they had each other. That was everything! Always full of love for each other, they still held hands and my dad would pat my mom on the "po-po" every time she'd walk by him, and each time she would giggle and touch him back.
 I can go on forever and ever about their kindness and loving ways. Every one that came across them saw it. It couldn't be helped.
 Before I was born, (I'm the sixth of seven), these two beautiful people took in babies. The babies were from unwed mothers, or mothers with some problems. Some of the babies were waiting for their mom's to get better while others were waiting for adoption. A couple of months with a baby wasn't uncommon. Obviously you get attached, so, when the first baby was taken back, my parents were devastated for days.
 Did they stop because the heartache of losing them was too much? No, these two unselfish people, decided to take two babies at a time. That way, when one had to leave them, there was a still a baby left and a new baby coming. Even after all those years passed, they could tell you the names. 
 Years went by and the final three of us came to be after my mom had suffered three miscarriages and a radical mastectomy. My dad told me she never complained, she just put her best face forward and took care of her family.  
  We were living in Rome, NY when the Vietnam War was starting and my dad got orders to go to Thailand ( I actually think it was called Siam back then).
My mom did all sorts of volunteer things to help pass the time. We used to collect unwanted Barbie dolls and check them all over, redress them, switch heads to better bodies and wrap them for the under privileged children.  (One of my favorite memories still)
 My mom would also take in peoples laundry for some extra money. I can still see her sprinkling the clothes with water and putting them in a bag (I swear in the fridge) and take them out when she ironed them.  She taught us kids how to iron  ( I still love to do it) We used to iron my dads handkerchiefs, oh how proud we were!
   I remember one day, my mom and I were in the kitchen ironing, a song came on the radio and my mom just collapsed in a chair and started crying.  It was Christmas, and Elvis was singing how Blue it was.  My mom just couldn't hold back the tears. There were a couple of songs that just made her cry, that still to this day break my heart. Blue Christmas and I'll be home for Christmas.  
 When Christmas finally came, we would all sit huddled together around my mom and the TV watching  Bob Hope. We always prayed for a quick sighting of my dad. Just knowing that my dad was in the audience thrilled us.
(In later years we would all watch Bob Hope praying to catch a glimpse of one of my brothers.  We never did, but, Bob Hope was a huge part of my childhood.)

  My mom hadn't heard from my dad in a little while and was getting anxious. My dad had been run over by a truck and was in the hospital. He had road burn all over his body and a crushed bone in his back. He was alive!  As soon as he healed enough they were sending him home!
 The day came and we went to get him. The gates were outside and back then, we were able to go right to the gate and greet the passengers.  We saw his plane land and we followed it to the waiting area. My mom was holding my little brother and the rest of us were all together.
 We watched as men in uniform kept getting greeted by their loved ones as they made their way to the gate. My mom was scared because all these men were coming off the plane and not my dad.
My dad, because he was injured, was the last to get off the plane. As he was coming down the steps of the plane, my mom screamed and ran out to him. Of course we all ran too. He had a limp, but, that was my dad, just as handsome as ever!
  Even though I was young, I never wanted to have my parents not be together on Christmas. They never have.
  My beautiful mother became an angel in May of 2007, my darling dad just couldn't survive without his love beside him and joined my mom the day after Thanksgiving. Six months. His broken heart just couldn't continue. And so, he was with her for Christmas.
 I love you Mom and Dad so very much. I think of you every single day and hope some day to make you proud!
 Happy Anniversary!

Saturday, March 10, 2012

Special Moments caught on Video

I am so grateful for technology! I remember being a little girl in Florida and being asked in school what we thought it would be like in the year 2000.  Wow, 2000. Seemed like a number so far away to a little girl.  I dreamed it would be like the Jetson's cartoon. Cars that fly, robots that talked, a TV connected to your phone so that you could see someone that you were talking with. Oh, not a smart phone, who ever heard of such a thing? A phone that you could take out of your house that was actually a computer? Oh please!
Computers were huge and took up entire rooms! No way would the public ever be able to 1. afford one. 2. have space for one. or 3. ever need such a thing! Talking robots? Oh yeah, you know it! I wanted my own Rosie.
Now, we have smart phones. they are not just smart, they are brilliant! My daughter actually has one that talks back to her. She can even ask it knock knock jokes. Pretty amazing I must say!
So many special moments are now able to be captured by these wonderful devices and uploaded onto our computers and even sent out into the cyber world to share with people you have never even met.
This is a story of one of those moments. I ask that you watch the video that I attached after you read this. It is a moment in a very dear friend's life that was caught and uploaded to YouTube. I do not own any copy rights to this and hope that it is okay that I borrowed it.
 I have been Blessed with so many very wonderful people in my life! This girl is so sweet and sincere, everyone loves her from the time that you first meet her. She has a way about her that just makes you feel so special. She is a gift to all who know her. This gift's name is Amanda.
Oh, I know, she is sitting reading this right now, shaking her head and thinking no way! But yes, Amanda you are very special and I am going to share your moment with the other person that reads this blog.
First let me tell you a little about the back ground.
   Before life got difficult for us, I had my dream job. I was the accounting manager in our local walmart and was lucky enough to have very special people work for me in there. We were our own little family. We worked in two offices that are "hidden" and we dead bolt ourselves in there. Our little family consisted of Andrea, Jenifer, Margaret Ann, Mike, Katie, Linda, Nancy, Susan me and Amanda.  We truly love one another! We all became great friends! We worked so many years together and went through so much, babies, weddings, graduations, proposals, secrets discovered. There were very sad times too, we followed Susan through her breast cancer treatment and recovery, to it only coming back and this time in her bones. We lost Susan in January of 2007. That was the start of our year of sadness.
 But, this is story is not a sad one, this one is of a special moment in someones life. So,if I may, I want to give you a little bit of a back ground.
 Since we had no windows to the outside world in our offices, we still wanted a homey feel to it. So, we had plants and pictures. Pictures of our families that we posted on a wall. Amanda posted one of her "future husband" Enrique Inglesias. She loved that man before he was famous. We would joke around and she would talk of her "future husband". She would someday meet this man. We all knew how much she loved this man.
  Have you ever been such a fan of someone for so many years that if you ever really met them, you would just be blown away? I have often thought long and hard on this one. Mine would have been Princess Diana. I admired her so much. And of course, Donny Osmond! I have loved him since ... well, that's another story.
  My daughter and I were driving home from shopping when I got a text message from Andrea saying guess which former Accounting Associate got to see her dream man? She told me what to look up on YouTube.
 I looked it up and couldn't believe it! Enrique took his concert to Boston and Amanda was in the front row. When I saw her, my hand went to my heart and tears flooded my eyes. Oh Amanda got to see her "future husband" and we get to see her expression. We got to live her dream with her.
We pulled into the driveway and couldn't even take the time to get out of the car. Leah had to watch this too.
 We both cried watching Amanda's dream come true. So sit back and please enjoy this moment, this is our friend Amanda and her reaction to seeing Enrique. Please give the video a second, you will see her!

This is to dreams coming true. My darling Amanda, I am so happy to have been able to see this moment in time. Leah, who never was a fan of Enrique's, is now. He is a wonderful man who was lucky enough to meet Amanda!

Fast Food Friday

Well, it's friday again and that means, time to get out the scale and hope for the best. Why is it that we worry about stepping on that thing at the end of a week? We followed the program and counted everything that we ate, but still, there is a dread that overcomes me... by eating all three meals and snacking, it is sure to not make me happy when I step on it. I am always afraid that all  of a sudden the scale will come to life and yell HELP, as it sees me approaching. 
I don't want to get too nervous and have my palms get sweaty, how much could that weigh? I also know that I won't see a loss like last week, after all, it wouldn't be healthy for me to lose that quickly and you know every one tells you it's water weight...to me, weight is weight. A pound of feathers weighs the same as a pound of dirt. 
 Ok, hands dry, out comes the scale and ... minus 2.2 pounds! Yay.     \o/     That brings my total to 9.6. YES! Almost 10  pounds.  
Leah, went out, had drinks, but chose wisely and she is down another 2.6 bringing her grand total to 10.6!!!  We are doing well and finding new things and healthier ways to eat them.
 Thanks to my friend Danielle (hi Danielle! Hope that you had a great birthday) I have discovered  spaghetti squash. Such an interesting vegetable...if you've never tried it, it is actually pretty good. It is different from other squashes, this one, when cooked, does resemble spaghetti. It has a mild flavor that takes on the taste of what you put on it. It's a bit crunchy, in a good way, not all icky and mushy when you bite it. And guess what? Since we are following weight watchers, and it is a vegetable, you can eat as much of it as you want, just make certain to count the points of what else you put on it. I had pasta sauce and meatballs on mine, but, I am definitely going to experiment with this new found addiction!
 I wonder if I can incorporate chocolate into it somehow??? 
   I went to get a food scale today and run some errands, my stomach realized it was 2:30 and I hadn't eaten any lunch! Hmmm, on the road, surrounded by, Subway, McDonalds, Wendy's, Pizza Hut, Papa Ginos, Panera, and so many more places that I could go and grab a quick bite that would satisfy my hunger.  I wanted a big juicy cheeseburger with the works and fries and of course a DIET coke...I thought I was being good and even checked the app on my phone to see how many points I would be using.  It's only day one of the third week and I don't want to use my bonus points up on the first day, so, I made a very wise decision and turned the car around and went to the local farm store. I wanted a tuna steak. I could just taste it! (plus I needed to pick up a couple of the squashes) 
  I looked at the tuna and it looked really great, wow, 2.99 a pound! I can afford that, then I saw the swordfish steaks (which I don't care for, by the way)  they were 14.99 a pound! Good Lord!  So I looked at the price of the tuna again and it was 12.99!! 12.99!!  Sweet Lord almighty! That must be the best, melt in your mouth tuna there ever was! 
 Being unemployed I'm thinking, "um, yeah, I think I will leave that for the people that have a Champagne budget."  I opted for a fruit cup and a couple of the squashes. (Squashes? Is that a word? Or is it like Deer? You can see A deer or a whole field of Deer! or is it like fungus/fungi?) Anyway,  I decided that I did a good thing. I didn't fall for the fast food temptation. I didn't spend all my grocery money on a tuna steak, and I bought a fruit cup for lunch. Yes, I was feeling good, so, I bought myself some daffodils! 
  I figure, I probably won't ever receive flowers again, (unless of course there are some single men out there who just happen to read my blog and find me somewhat interesting maybe a bit entertaining, and they have the urge to send me some flowers...jot me a comment and I will give you my address. I'm not picky...I love Daisy's and Lilacs or even dandelions. )
 So, feeling a little bit proud of myself, me, my squashes/squashi and daffodils went home.

Thursday, March 8, 2012


I am so thankful for my dreams. I dream in color and I remember at least one of them the next day.  I have to admit, my favorite dreams are of my husband. I truly believes that he actually comes to visit me in my dreams. ( any of you that do not believe that, please keep it to your self,  let me have my little bubble of hope.)
 There are some dreams that I still remember so clearly and they were years and years ago.  I had a dream when I was  six months pregnant (after Leah was born, that Jesus and Mary) came to me and told me that I was going to lose my baby, but, the baby would be with them and that I will be okay. Strange dream, but, when I woke up, I went to the bathroom and lost my baby. I must admit that my ex-husband was very kind to me that day. But, I actually was emotionally alright. I still had Leah and I was so thankful for her, plus, I took care of my sister Chrissy's three children Anji, Tiffany and Aaron while she worked second shift. I was surrounded by the love of little ones. All the chill'ens were 2 years apart including Leah so, they were all like brother and sisters. Leah wasn't an only child after all.
  I had a dream after my husband died, I remember it as if it just happened. I can even tell you the night I had it. It had only been five days after burying my husband and my dad lay in the hospital dying, my husband came to me in my dream.
 Oh I was so so happy to see him. We were sitting on a red and white checkered blanket and had a picnic set out on it with grapes and roast beef sandwiches. I couldn't stop kissing him and I kept telling him how happy I was to see him and he just smiled his beautiful crooked little smile with those gorgeous dimples.
Then I told him that I had the worst nightmare. I dreamed that he had died and  I was all alone and didn't know what to do.
His smile disappeared and he looked so sad. So, I said " Oh Gilly, please don't tell me. I wasn't dreaming was I?" His blue eyes filled with tears and I felt my heart breaking. He never spoke. He just shook his head.
 I was crying when my phone rang and woke me. It was my brother Peter calling to tell me that my dad had passed away. As sad as I was for me losing him, I was so happy that he was no longer heartbroken. I know he was with my mom, his love, his life and he was so happy again.
 It was the day after Thanksgiving. My dad had held on so we wouldn't have a holiday to be sad on, but,it ended up being my wonderful brother in law's birthday. Poor Jim, he is so loving and kind and now his day is also a memory of losing my dad.
  Now, when my husband comes to visit me in my dreams, we do things. We go horseback riding and racing in go carts. It is always something fun and adventurous, just as if he were still here with me.
 My folks come to see me sometimes too. They are so happy and young and whole again. I always wake up feeling like we had such a great visit!
 When I lost my mom, I thought I would never heal! I cried every night. I took care of her and now, didn't know what to do with her gone. As much as I hurt, I didn't realize the depth of my dads pain. Don't get me wrong, I knew quite well he was hurting and badly. I told my husband and cousins that I didn't see him making it until Christmas because his heart was so broken.
 I soon came to realize the depth of my dad's pain when my husband passed. How can a heart that is so shattered keep beating? Why does it have to. I knew how happy my dad was to  be with my mom again. It was hard for me to be sad for his passing. I miss him greatly, but, I know he is where he wants to be. My thing was now I was angry! Not angry with him, not angry with my mom or husband, I was angry with God! How could He, a loving God do this? How could He take everything from my daughter and me. How come He even took family from us. (Some of my husbands family don't love us, maybe they never did.) How come He wouldn't take ME? My dad did it. My dad was able to join my mother in six months, but not me...I couldn't understand and I was so ready to go.
 Then months later I remembered how hard it was for me when I lost my mom. How could I wish this upon my daughter? All she had left was me, and here I am wishing and praying to die. I had to stop. I had to stand back up and try to move forward.
 It has taken almost five years, but, I am doing just that. Oh, let me be the first to tell you, it NEVER gets better, it just gets different.
 People tend to say everything gets better with time, there's a reason for everything, God won't give you anything you can't handle...all things you should NEVER EVER EVER say to someone who is grieving.
Above all never say "you need to join the human race" at someone's dad's wake. Which was exactly what was said to me. A few weeks later, I got an e-mail from the same lady ( who also sent it to my husbands entire family) saying how selfish a person I was. This letter was cold and hurtful and mean.
 How I should go into a nursing home and see someone that has to live without a limb and I needed to be thankful.
 Holy Shit Lady! First of all I am one of the most selfless people ever! I did nothing but take care of my family. I took care of my parents and took unpaid days off to do so. My happiness was when I could make someone happy and this woman had the nerve to say such things. I would gladly give up a limb, I would give up all of my limbs to have my husband back. I already tried to have the doctors use my heart for him.  I still think that they should have. He was such a better person than I could ever be.
 So, be very careful of what you may say to a grieving person. Some day, it may just be you who is the one grieving and understanding the depths of someones pain. Be kind and patient, most people in that much pain and despair are also in shock. They are unaware of anything except the pain and emptiness that is consuming them.
 There is no time table for grieving. It can even last a life time.Try to have more compassion and remember that what the grievers need mostly from you is not any words of advise, its usually just a touch, a hug so that they know there is still hope.
 God Bless You all and please share a bit of love today. You never know how desperately someone needs a little kindness shown to them.

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Spring Fever

Even though the world around my little spot in the woods has more snow than it did all winter, the spring fever has hit me.
 I have a front room that faces the south and has more windows than wall. That beautiful sun, shines all day long in there and I could bask away in it all day, but, the urge to clean is upon me. I want every thing to be fresh and new. So, here come the projects.
 My daughter and I moved here in October of 2011. We needed to start new and heal. Even though it's been four years since our "year of sadness" of which we suffered huge losses and extreme heart ache, it is time to push forward. Oh, don't get me wrong, it's still a difficult challenge, but, we will make it, and this is the place that will help us along.
 We are completely surrounded by woods, can't see a single neighbor.  Even though I am outgoing and a social butterfly when comfortable, I love the serenity of no neighbors. Well, the neighbors that we do get to see are the wild turkeys, and the deer on occasion. Oh and of course the squirrels, you know, the killer ones that my dogs think they have to protect me from.
 So first things first, let's pack up things we don't need, and store them in the basement or barn if it needs to be hauled off to the dump.
  On to the painting. My daughter has a great eye for color so, I always have her come with me to get the paint. By the way, the best paint I have ever used so far is the Behr premium that has the primer right in it. (although I would happily accept it, I have not been given any paint to sample from them, I just really like it.)
  My daughter has a jewel tone that is so gorgeous. It's a teal color with cream accents. Her bathroom was a dark green, she really brightened it up with one wall that is a  jewel tone dark reddish/pink. The jewel tones are bright colors and very pretty. The other walls are the very light cream with the jewel tone as the accents. The towels and rug are black. She is also going to tile her floor in there when she finds just the perfect pairing.
  As for me, I had such a hard time deciding what I wanted for color in my room. I have the bigger of the two rooms, which have french doors that open to the study. I wanted something soft, feminine, and fun.
 I want it to have the feel of a ladies tea room. I have never been to a ladies tea room, but, I have a vision in my head. So, off we went to our home depot to get started.
 I went in there thinking I wanted a blue color for my walls, but, just couldn't seem to find the "right" color. Just when I thought my search was over, my daughter would hand me another card sample and I would have to start from scratch.
I picked up one of the idea books and viola, there it was! Exactly what I wanted, elegantly Edwardian, with a sprinkling of whimsy.
 My bedroom will be, Queen's Tart with cream accents. For my bathroom which is in my bedroom and has no door, the walls will be violet water and the accents will be minty frosting. All nice spring colors.
Because my bathroom doesn't have a door, I hang a curtain for privacy. I had a country green color, but, I am now on the hunt for one that doesn't look funny against both the bedroom and bathroom colors and not cream or white...hmmm I guess it depends on the cream one, I will see.
We found the border we want for the dining area and kitchen. We even found a color that we like for both rooms, still debating the color for the study, but, we have started.
 Now, if only the snow would melt!

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Schmoozing along

 We have more snow now than we have had all winter in Maine. As much as I hate to shovel, I have to admit, it is breathtakingly beautiful here in our new spot in the woods! It is so serene here, I know that we were meant to be here. I thank God every day for this beautiful place.
I have healed more here in the few months living here, than I did the past four years. I feel my husband so strongly here. This would have been his dream home. That man loved the woods!
When my husband was alive, we would take our dogs and walk in the woods of Maine and New Hampshire. There are so many beautiful trails.
He taught me so much, and I miss him so desperately. But, I know, when my time is done, he will be there to get me. I used to wish that it would be immediately. I didn't know how i could ever survive without him.
Oh, some days are very tough to do so, and other days, I know that there are adventures for me to have, so, that when we are rejoined, we can swap all kinds of stories.
  I was so angry at God for making the mistake of taking my husband, that when my dad was leaving us to rejoin my beautiful sweet mom, I told him that when he gets to Heaven, to please tell God that he was wrong and I have a lot to say when I get there.
  Now, the funny thing is, I was only angry with God; not Jesus. Oh, I thought that by being angry only at God, I was teaching Him a lesson for making a mistake. So, I would continue to talk to Jesus and pray, but, only to Jesus, because, He was my bro. He knew what I was feeling and He understood my rebelling.
   How could God take away everything from me in less than a year, how could He do that to my daughter? She was only 22 and had more pain in that one year of sadness than I had in my entire life!
  But, unlike me that crumbled, Leah, who has so much of her dad in her, threw her shoulders back and stood up straight and carried the weight so silently.
  Leah finally asked me to go seek some help, I wasn't moving forward and it had been over a year. She told me that not only had she lost both of her grandparents, and father, she also lost her mother.  She was right. I was lost, I truly didn't think that I would ever be able to find my way out of the darkness. Thank God for her love and strength. She is an amazing woman! I have been Blessed.
 I'm not sure when I stopped being angry at God. I am aware that anger is just one of the steps in grieving,  but, slowly it left, the anger that I had for God, but I actually realized it during the funeral for Whitney Houston.
  There is just something about a Black Southern Baptist Church. They love God and are not ashamed. They feel the Spirit and stand and clap and shout AMEN! You truly experience God's love for you in those churches. The music is so full of joy and life that you can't help but feel it.
  When we were growing up, my dad was in the service and one of the places we lived was Florida. Florida in the 60's. It's bad enough that we were Catholic and had friends that weren't just white...we were raised that all people are equal. You need to never pay attention to the outside, to skin color, to deformities, you need to see what's on the inside. Our neighbors loved my parents, but, would give their opinions to my folks about what they felt about our thinking. But, my dad would always come out the winner in a gentle way.
  I was lucky enough to be able to go with my friend to her church in Florida. I had to go to my church with my family but, on Wednesday nights my mom would let me go with my friend to her church. I loved everything about it. The big hats, the white gloves, the AMENS. No one cared that I was white, we were all there for the same reason, worship. I miss that church! I miss the feeling that you have from being touched by the love in that church.
  I have gone to a couple of Southern Baptist Churches up here, but, they just aren't even close to being the same. So, I will pray that we get a few up this way. I think everyone should experience the love from there.

We all have lessons and trials that we must go through, and we all want the people and pets we love to live forever.  What I realize is that even though I had turned my back on God, He continued to love me. He didn't turn his back on me.
  Normally, I am not one to force religion down your throat, but, I KNOW that I have been blessed all my life! I was raised by two fun loving parents, and have my four wonderful brothers and two fantastical sisters; not to mention their spouses and all the children.  I am so thankful for my family.

 Family is so very important.