Friday, November 30, 2007

Conscious, Unconscious, Subconscious and Self-conscious

This might be one of those posts you run back to at 2am and delete.
I could have sworn that when Gracie and I walk, it is at least a half an hour. Time seems to stand still as she drags me down the street, the remembrance of Puppy Training remaining in my mind only. My knees certainly think that it's longer, and my lower back screams at me. It's only about 20 minutes. I have to step that up.
I haven't been to Curves for week and am feeling every missed session.
Right before the Fainting and Falling episodes, I was feeling pretty darned good. I even called Connie and said..."Hey, I am feeling pretty darned good!" The pain that I had for years when I breathe was pretty much gone...the ribs felt better, the neck looser, the knees were better, the headache gone.
Thanksgiving was really pleasant and I had the energy to do everything. Not even a nap. Friday after that, I decided to start some, as I lovingly call it, "Crap-Hunting." Did you know there is a lot of stuff in your house that you don't need? I was blissfully cleaning and went through drawers and shelves and tossed stuff. Couple of bags full and some charity items. I planned on resuming on Saturday. Friday night was a fun night out with the guys for my suggestion, no less. Usually, after 7pm is a push for me. Party girl.
Then Saturday happened, and my neck and head haven't been the same. When I hit the first time I smacked my head against the dog's kennel, smooshed the head against it, and then the floor. Luckily, there was a rug there. The next 3 times were lucky, too....concrete hit from just a couple of feet, and wastebaskets hit. I came to in a plastic trash can thinking, "Gee, this is a really small room."
No one in the ER nor my personal dr. are worried about these episodes, nor my poor widdle head. I just don't think I've been the same since, though.
Maybe it's the "blankness" of passing out that freaks me. I've never in my life fainted before. Ever. Was this like death? Why is there such a loss of everything? At least when you sleep you have....thoughts.
Maybe it's because my husband just stood there each time with no concern that I kept passing out. That kinda hurts.
Maybe it's because I'm in pain now, all over again. I thought I had some victory over that; it was short and passing.
I was talking to someone and they said something about asking for angels for someone...and they were actually seen. I thought, as she said that, gee...where were MY angels?
What a selfish thought. I could hear in my head, "We were right there with you."
I only managed to paint a couple of days this week; I did some computer work at home, though, and the usual errand running and grocery stuff....but mostly I felt lazy and useless. I often wonder if I am just lazy and useless and my dis-ease is a mere manifestion of my lazy-and-uselessness. If I get well, I might have to DO something. Does anyone else with chronic dis-ease think like this?
So, I decide to wipe the slate clean for this last week and be more forgiving to myself. Tomorrow I will start over. I will live in the present and not worry about what happened, or what might happen.

You do it, too, okay?

Drum rolllllll...........

My dear friend, Pat, with whom I've worked in ministry, has her own blog! She's just starting out, but make no mistake...she's no stranger to the computer...she's a webmaster and very techy, besides being a godly woman who ROCKS!

Please give her a welcome!
Pat's Place of Grace

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

moar funny pictures

Needed laffs today! (There are even FEET for Missy! ;-) He looks kinda like Pikachu!)
Click the pic; then scroll down a bit for the animated version!

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Happy Thanksgiving!

Update 11/26:
I got the same thing as older son...pretty sure he didn't give it to me because I took great biohazard precautions so that no one who came over (they had the choice NOT to come) would get it. I got it from being handed an adorable, germ-ridden grandbaby, bwess his widdle heart--and then told that they had just been sick--found out they went on to infect their entire family gathering--several generations no less.
No one that came over to our place has come down with anything, however, I did at 3 a.m. on Saturday morning; passed out 4 times; one from full standing position, luckily my face broke the fall. ER visit, fluids administered, yada yada. I love the holidays.
I believe we had a penguin, rather than a turkey, because the little twerpie thing wouldn't thaw...after 3.5 days in the fridge. He was only 13 pounds. Had to thaw him the cold water method early this morning.
Oldest son woke me at 3 in the a.m. is the only way to say it. He sat out the feast, but we have reserves for him. DIL came over with grandson and told me they had all been ill. Great.
Got to talk to Robert for a long time to catch up. That was great. He is very happy with his job, not being away from family, but time is going fast for him because he is so busy.
Gracie and I both limping this afternoon and evening, so we buckled up and bundled up and went for a walk to try to walk it off. It's wintery here!
It's not even 8pm, and I'm exhausted, had 7 here today. Not a lot. Just about right.
Hope yours was great (I know, I know, you don't ALL celebrate T-Day. Blessings!

If I don't get here tomorrow, I didn't want to miss saying Happy Thanksgiving to all of you. I am SO thankful for BlogWorld! What would my life be like without each and every one of you?? You all bring so much to the world, and you make me think, laugh, cry, and hope.

I am blessed indeed. I thank my God for all of you. Have a blessed, safe, and wonderful Thanksgiving.

(I mentioned over at Barbara's that I'm not fond of holidays in general...but I heard this song in passing and it cheered me up considerably. No, Cat Stevens did not write it.):

Morning Has Broken
Lyrics by Eleanor Farjeon

Morning has broken, like the first morning
Blackbird has spoken, like the first bird
Praise for the singing, praise for the morning
Praise for the springing fresh from the world

Sweet the rain's new fall, sunlit from heaven
Like the first dewfall, on the first grass
Praise for the sweetness of the wet garden
Sprung in completeness where his feet pass

Mine is the sunlight, mine is the morning
Born of the one light, Eden saw play
Praise with elation, praise every morning
God's recreation of the new day

Monday, November 19, 2007

Out of the mouths of babes....

I subbed for an English teacher Thursday and Friday last week. Don't you think it's funny that we're the only country in the world that makes us take classes in our own language? And, we are requiring that Hispanics coming into our country take Spanish? And, that our command of our own language is so poor?? And, no, this post will not be grammatically perfect.

But, I digress.

These were middle-schoolers in my charge. By Friday, I had fallen in love with all of them, even the ones named by the teacher that were supposed to cause me many problems. They were so funny. Some scenarios:

One lad looks at me funny. He says, "You look like Jamie Leigh Curtis." I reply, "Well, I suppose I've been told that." Under my breath I mutter, "Yeah, maybe if she gained 100 pounds." Another lad shouts, "JAMIE LEIGH CURTIS GAINED 100 POUNDS?!?"

It's reading and book review time. One young fellow is looking at the book shelf. For a really, REALLY, long time. I finally go over and ask him, "What are you looking for? May I help?" He says, "I can't find the book I was reading to do my review." "What was the book?" I asked. "Call of the Wild," he responds. "Well, go sit down and try to do as much as you can, and I'll hunt around for it." He sits and I KNOW that book is there. I hated it back in the old days and I hate it now, and every Language Arts class has more than a fair supply of the heart-breaking novel. And, there it is. Sitting right there. I take it over to him. "That's not it," he says. "Yes, it is. It's Call of the Wild by Jack London." I reply. "No, it's not. That book has 345 pages. Mine had 295," he says authoritatively, "so this can't be the book." ?!? Oy.

The teacher, ever so kind, left a boat-load of work for the kids to do in the last 2 days before Thanksgiving break, and you know they were just itching to do it all. She left a worksheet for the Gifted and Talented class. It was about complex and compound sentences. She left instructions for them to do some extra sentence analyzing besides just identifying which sentences are complex and which are compound. The kids look at the worksheet, and by the looks on their faces I contemplate calling 911 for mass resuscitation. "We DON'T know what this means!" The wails begin. And, as they were proper little G&T's, I knew they could see their entire future collapse before their very eyes. They would be destitute forever, living in a cardboard box, eating cold and stale McDonald's french fries from the McDumpster. Whoa was them. Panic ensued. I rang the little apple bell on the teacher's desk to quiet them down. They looked at me, silent and shocked. "Your teacher doesn't ring this little bell to get your attention?" I ask.
"No, she just screams."

SOOOO I explain, 3 or 4 times, the difference between a compound and a complex sentence. They work on the worksheets, muttering and whining, and beg to take them home overnight to study more. They bring them back the next day and the next assignment is horrific. Write 10 COMPLEX sentences about Will or Jim in Something Wicked This Way Comes. The blood drains from their faces. We go over it ONE MORE TIME. They start writing. They've got it! They are EVEN splitting the independent clause and putting the dependent clause in the middle! One kid, at a table of three students, raises his hand. I go over and he wants me to read his sentence. It's a correlative sentence. I start to tell him that it's a great sentence but "actually it is a correla..." and before I can finish, they all have their fingers in their ears saying "la la la la la la." LOL. Never mind. I show him how to change it up to keep it complex.

I had the best time with those kids.

Thursday, November 15, 2007

10 years

Sometimes it seems like a decade is a short time...sometimes very long. It's hard to believe that my mom died on this day 10 years ago. It seems longer because time without one of your best friends is a long, long time.
She was a very cool mom. She loved my boys and apologized to me that she wasn't going to see them grow up. I told her that she would see them again one day. She got a kick out of my youngest because he was so much like me when I was little.....not so compliant. They have both grown so much, and I'm proud of them.
Mom was June Cleaver with an attitude. A friend of hers wrote that she was certain that my mom was "up there" organizing all of heaven's closets. Mom would iron sheets...can you believe that? We surely appreciated it, though. I'm not my mom...just ask my kids. I think they appreciate me for my unique gifts as a mom! ;-)
My mom was very creative, but devoted herself completely to house and family. She was the center of the family, the bond that kept everyone together. I don't fill that bill, either! She would paint the rooms in the house a different color, often. Our neighbor was pretty sure the walls of the house were thicker and the rooms smaller than when it was built because of all the coats of paint. But, she would paint the coolest colors...nothing harsh, but....interesting. She gave me a bunch of paints, brushes, and told me to paint something on my first mural! and it was the selling point for the next people that bought the house when we moved.
If she saw you were interested in something, she would make it her quest to gift you with supplies, books, whatever, to help you succeed. Her whole life was wrapped up in taking care of everyone else. I always wanted her to take care of her. My favorite time with her was when she went back to school at Mount Mercy College in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. A whole new side of her, I was pleased to see. One time I went over there after classes and found her in the lounge, hanging with her school chums, talking and laughing. She really found herself there, but when my dad transferred to Dallas, that all sort of ended. He travelled a lot, my brother and I were in college in Iowa until I decided to move down. She was alone a lot down here at first and it was hard for her. She tried to go back at UTDallas, but it just wasn't the same.
If you've made it this far, I guess my point is: it's great to take care of everyone, to serve others, to be the backbone of a family. . .just please don't take it to extremes. Take care of yourself, follow your dreams, take time for yourself. I wish my mom would have been able to do that more.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

running towards....something....

Today was my last dose of low-dose prednisone. I will try to go to my Chinese doctor to undo some of the problems that pred causes. Maybe if I'm stabilized, she can keep me that way. I do feel better; a lot less pain except my knees started acting up. One went "out" Monday morning, then the other followed. I went to work painting with an Ace stabilizer brace on one and an Ace bandage on the other and did great. Praise God I can walk and work. Some folks can't.

I have lost most of the pred weight that I's been up and down. Pred makes everything look yummy, plus it redistributes weight on your body in weird places and causes water retention. I'm battling depression over this recent flare and the up and down weight as well. A visiting relative's comment about my weight hurt me deeply--I'm trying to forgive, but it's hard.

I have to skip the knee machines at Curves, but I'm going anyway, I'll just double up on the other stuff. I read Codepoke's posts about tennis...I'm so jealous! I miss tennis and running so much. Well, maybe not...Gracie shot out of the house a while back after this little dog who was tormenting her from outside...I took out after her, running up and down the street trying to catch her. It wasn't until after I corralled her that I realized....HEY! I ran! :-) then...
Hey! I hurt! :-/

I know the "secret" to life, though, really is to keep moving--even if it's only parts of you!

Monday, November 12, 2007

Autumn! I love it!

Click here: RAINBOWS OF FALL... Lovely! Enjoy!

It is so gorgeous here in Texas right now. The autumn light is amazing, the temp is great, and the leaves are changing and falling.
Wish I could send it to all of you!

Saturday, November 10, 2007


If I get one more email about how I must not see The Golden Compass, I believe I will scream.

Now I must see it.

Subject: Important! Please do not see this movie

If you haven't been informed yet:

This is one you will probably want to pass on to parents and grandparents--verify on snopes.

The marketing for this movie has already started. It looks a lot like "Narnia" but is so far from it. BEWARE!There will be a new Children's movie out in December called THE GOLDEN COMPASS. It is written by Phillip Pullman, a proud atheist who belongs to secular humanist societies. He hates C. S. Lewis's Chronicle's of Narnia and has written a trilogy to show the other side. The movie has been dumbed down to fool kids and their parents in the hope that they will buy his trilogy of books--where in the end the children kill God and everyone can do as they please. Nicole Kidman stars in the movie so it will probably be advertised a lot. This is just a friendly warning that you sure won't hear on the regular TV.Pullman , a prominent British atheist, has acknowledged, "it is my goal to go after Christianity, I want God to be dead in my works. I want to undermine Christianity"ALSO, for additional info, follow the links: http://en.wikipedia.o...

here's another email on this:Hello Friends! There is an anti-Christian movie (written by an atheist, Philip Pullman of England) called The Golden Compass coming out on December 7 (just in time for Christmas). It stars Nicole Kidman, so it will be getting a lot of publicity. Philip despises C.S Lewis and Narnia, and his goal is to "kill GOD in the minds of children". An article written about him labels him "the most dangerous author in Britain!" He has written 3 books that all promote atheism, and the movie depicts his first book (which is the more watered-down of the 3). His goal is that you see the movie and then that your kids want his trilogy for Christmas.and then it REALLY gets offensive in the second 2 books!! But just to give you a tid-bit of what's in Philip's books.a ex-nun calling Christianity a convincing mistake, 2 characters representing Adam & Eve KILL God (called YAHWEH) in the end, and there's a story about castration & female circumcision! I am blown away by this! It will be targeted toward children and advertised as a fun-holiday flick. Don't fall for it! Here is the snopes article about it to back up what I've been saying. PLEASE, PLEASE tell everyone you know and love NOT TO SEE THIS MOVIE!! Imagine how our children's little minds would absorb these awful lies! Let's get the word out and fight back!!! Boycott The Golden Compass!! It is my hope that you choose wisely what your family sees and teach your children to do the same. Anyone who takes offense to the misrepresentation of God should NOT see this movie.

Monday, November 05, 2007

These Dreams....

I remember, at the very least, bits and pieces of my dreams every night. I love my dreams; I rarely have a bad dream. Generally, they are happy, interesting, or spiritual in nature. The ones that I remember the most are usually of a spiritual nature....the others, I usually remember glimpses of them throughout the day, and they make me smile--but I rarely remember everything about them.

Last night's was fascinating and it has stuck with me the whole day. I was wandering through a house with a few people here and there, and there was a little toddler girl, about 18 months to a year old. She would only come out from wherever she was hiding for me. I'm a boy mom, through and through, but this little one really grabbed my attention. She ran to me and I picked her up and held her. I asked a woman why she was so riveted on me, and the woman answered, "Because she is yours." Kind of matter of fact, yes? I looked at the little girl. She had black hair and dark eyes. Her hair was cut in a pixie cut, which is kind of a bob with bangs. I had such a powerful feeling of love for her, it was overwhelming. I wanted to protect her, to make sure she was safe and taken care of. For one reason or another, we kept getting separated; I would search for her, and she would run to me again, into my arms--only to me.

I've had an email conversation with a friend of my husband's and mine. He is unfamiliar with the concept of Grace; he is Catholic, and as much as this may irritate Catholics, it is a common thread with the ones that I've known. Guilt is the driving force in their faith--they never measure up to God's standards, so they beat themselves up for their failings. One afternoon my husband and I were at his house; his wife is Protestant and has been trying to get through to him on Grace, to no avail. They had some other friends there, most of whom we didn't know. For some reason, we got on this subject and I started doing something that I can't do normally in human to human interactions...preach. The words flowed out of me, quoting scripture, the whole thing. I can't even remember what I said, but it was all about God's love. For some reason it hit him, and we had a few email volleys trading and discussing scripture, until this morning when he sent me an email thanking me and telling me that it finally sunk in that God truly loved him, warts and all! I gave all praise to God, because it certainly wasn't from me. Praise the Lord!

It was interesting that I got that email this morning after my dream. Of course, that little girl was me. I think it was a spiritual dream; the message was that God looks on all of us, no matter how old we are, as children. How can He not, when we are His? I think I was supposed to see myself through His eyes--vulnerable, fearful, and with the need to have one person that can handle everything; protect and be with no matter what happens. He wanted me to see Him as He is; the parent who always seeks out the child, wanting to handle everything, to protect and be with them no matter what happens. I think we're supposed to see ourselves as He sees us, imperfect, fragile, and completely lovable.

He loves us all incredibly, you know? It's because we're His.

Friday, November 02, 2007

Subbing pays off.....

JustSayHi - Science Quiz
Yay! I can do more than draw a picture! ;-)

Thursday, November 01, 2007

Quick question....

What do you think about a large almost-mega church where the founding pastor, or the pastor's spouse, work in the accounting department with the ability to cut checks and handle money?

Memories of Halloween then and now.....

I love Halloween--more of the way it was. We had about 30 Trick or Treaters last night. They were so cute...the later it got, the older they got. I never give them a hard time when they're over 13, though. At least they had costumes. I don't really pay much attention to all of the costumes, too busy handing out candy. One kid, though, probably around 14 or 15 stood out. He made his costume--a robot--out of cardboard and tin foil. What a hoot! He had a cut out for his eyes, all boxed in around himself with black clothing. There was a small flashlight in his eye area. He pulled open a "drawer" to put candy inside. He and I made eye contact and I said, "That is the BEST costume I have seen all night!" He hesitated and said, "I spent way too much time on it." I said, "It was worth it. I'm an artist, and you are awesome!" He paused and said, "Thank you!" Then, he ran to catch up to his friends, yelling, "HEY...I'm AWESOME!!" LOL

Now, in our city, the merchants on Main Street have a "Trunk or Treat" on Halloween; all the kids in the city go there and get candy instead of going around the neighborhood. I prefer the neighborhood approach. We were a more cohesive neighborhood when our kids would go around the block. The fear of poisoned candy and razorblades has proven largely unfounded, but we always checked the kids' candy.

My memories of Halloween are wonderful, and I asked my oldest if he had good memories. He's a little hacked at the "killing" of Halloween by fundies and churches, too. He said he has great memories of when they were little. Mine are of scrambling to make the weirdest costumes: Captain Picard, a pterodactyl (THAT was fun), T-Rex, because my kids couldn't be just ghosts or Frankenstein's monster....oh, Grant was one year. I took Kyle through Walmart costumes one year, he was about 5. I said, "What do you want to be?" He said, "Nothing black-colored." We were surrounded by black costumes. I nagged Grant one year, he was about 5. He wouldn't decide what to be...time was nearing! "Please, just be a vampire, little G!" I was easy, and I had face paint and a black cape. I pleaded up til the day before, terrified that he would come up with the most difficult idea at the last minute. "PLEASE! VAMPIRE!" I asked for the last time. "Oh, all right!!!" He relented. "I'll suck people's blood and live in a box!" LOL

Robert loved taking Grant around because the cute factor yielded more candy...until he went as an IRS agent. He put on a black suit, and carried a briefcase for the goods. They would ring the doorbell, Grant would say, "Trick or Treat" in his cute little kid voice, and Robert would say, "IRS, ma'am" The people would say, "Here you go, sweetie." to Grant....and to Robert, "Nothing for you, took everything already!" LOL

When I was growing up, my mom would decorate the house all up; we lived in Iowa, so it was a real autumn. She made an incredible ham and lima bean soup (sounds weird...SO savory!) and it was just FUN. My dad would carve a big pumpkin and stick it on our yard light (free standing street lamp-looking) and wire it up with a two way radio. He was the Great Pumpkin. Kids would come to talk to the GP, and dad would respond....but only to kids. Many was the ticked-off kid that would drag a parent over to hear the GP talk, but my dad wouldn't talk in the presence of adults. He was trying to keep the "magic" going. I thought it was kinda mean, but we all giggled anyway.

When I got into "religion" I discovered that all of this was evil! OMgosh...I never knew. I thought it was. . .fun!