Archive for the ‘life’ Category

The Old Ball Game

Some of you know that I am a fan of the Los Angeles Dodgers and that this year, for the second consecutive year, they made it to the World Series. And yes, for the second consecutive year, they lost. Some of you may think that isn’t smile worthy but it is indeed the topic of my Weekly Smile.

Why would I smile about such a great loss? It was A record setting game, the longest post-season game at seven hours and twenty minutes and eighteen innings! It was a well fought game by both teams. As soon as one team got ahead, the other would tie! The two teams went through a combined eighteen pitchers! To say that the players showed stamina would be an understatement! Ultimately, the Dodgers did win! Yay Dodgers! It was the only game they won, unfortunately!And so I smile when I think about it!

What made you smile this week? Tell us about it! Take A look at the above link and join in this week’s smile!


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Smile A Little Smile For Me

Some of you may remember the Weekly Smile, a feature I participated in and hosted by Trent. He stopped doing it for awhile but it is back this week! Yay!


I’ve been MIA for a long while. There is so much going on that it has my head spinning. I feel like I am going through the motions of being where I am needed, not necessarily where I want to be. But there are smiles in these days anyway.

Tina, my daughter, moved about a month ago. Five weeks, I think. And the boys started school the week before they moved so for that first week, I was driving them to school in the morning and picking them up in the afternoon. Spencer, in kindergarten, had a different schedule so there were four round trips each day. It’s not a long drive, about twenty-five miles each way. However, it is on a major freeway that takes everyone from around any place near Portland to and from the airport and beyond. There is also construction on this freeway. That meant that a normal drive of maybe thirty minutes could take well over an hour. I spent the better (or actually the worst) part of that week on the freeway! Not fun. But the smiles were mine and theirs as we discovered a new school and new people. I’m signed up for PTA and to help in the classrooms. The boys love going to school and now they ride the bus to and from. Lots of smiles.

I am now taking care of all of them while Tina works. She doesn’t have her child care set up yet so I am up in Vancouver all the time now. I think I have slept at home in my bed about five nights out of the last month. Maya is full of smiles. She has really gotten attached to me. This week she discovered the boys’ race track and set it up to play with. She also loves going in the backyard to discover things like plants and flowers and bugs!


Maya even discovered, painfully, that you should not put a car with the wheels moving on top of your head!


Maya loves her kitty cats and she is very good with them

This week my smiles are mostly all related to the grandchildren and to the fact that this new life and location they’ve embarked on is really good for all of them. The kinks will be smoothed soon and I think it will be another couple of weeks before I stop coming here every day and go back home to resume my new routine.

What made YOU smile this week? Tell us in a post and link to Trent’s blog above!

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Sometimes it seems like I do nothing but then other times it seems as if I have no time for anything. I can’t pinpoint anything specific I have done in the past month but I sure haven’t had time for blogging.

What have I been doing? Being a grandmom is what has taken most of the time and energy, I think. I have also been to a number of doctor appointments for follow ups, mostly. The being a grandmom is important and I don’t make apologies for that. And the medical appointments are also important, even the follow ups.

The boys haven’t moved yet. The big move is this weekend. Their school just started yesterday and today (Anderson started third grade yesterday and Spencer started kindergarten today). That’s two weeks later than scheduled because the teachers were on strike. Those two weeks were spent waiting for a daily update about whether school would be canceled the following day or not and also trying to get in as much park time as possible while the weather was good and there was no school. Interestingly enough, the weather changed yesterday, just as school began. Today it is in the upper 50’s and raining. I guess, as much as I would like it not to, autumn approaches rapidly!

Today is the anniversary of the terrorist attacks involving the World Trade Center and the Pentagon and that empty field in Pennsylvania. That’s what everyone is talking about today. It’s a sad time for a number of reasons. First, the obvious, the deaths and destruction of so many lives, of the “innocence” of so many of us who had not experienced terrorism so close to home, and, to a certain degree to the fiber of our country. While it brought about a certain sense of national unity, it was short-lived. I see the months after the attacks as the turning point when it became okay to question, persecute, and discriminate against so many people because of the shade of flesh they have or because of the language that speak or the religion they believe in. First it was all against anyone from the terrorists’ countries then it spread so that now it is against anyone that doesn’t share the same skin tone, language, nationality, or religion. That is the downfall we see happening today.

I don’t usually get political. Today I am thinking a lot about this and it is spilling out. Maybe I am just writing down my thoughts to process them and examine them and adjust them if necessary. We have to think about all of these things so we can each decide what, if anything, we will try to do about it. Will we change it, even on a small scale? Will we let it continue? Will be stand silent as it happens? Will we speak up.

Well, this isn’t going any place so I think I’ll stop and I will post it, if for no other reason than to have a record that I actually did something for the ten minutes that it took me to write this.

Until I am in a different frame of mind, hopefully not too long from now, ciao!

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I Created A Monster!

Sharing this ten year old post today, World Photography Day.

Wasted Days And Wasted Nights

I created a monster and I didn’t even mean to.

When I was younger, much younger, I loved to take pictures.I had several of those 60’s and 70’s instant cameras and took tons of film with them.When I graduated from college, my mom gave me an SLR camera.I loved taking photos with it but I didn’t know much about photography.I never took a class.I never read a book on photography.I just enjoyed it.As I started a family, I got newer cameras but I always came back to my SLR.However, my husband thought that I didn’t need all those cameras so when I got a fancy schmancy Olympus automatic camera, he gave my SLR to his brother who was also into photography.I always wanted to get another one.However, I knew I didn’t have the time to invest in photography as a hobby so I waited.I encouraged my kids to try photography.They…

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I’m seeing a lot of back to school pictures on Facebook today. Too soon. I remember, when my kids were growing up, being sad when they were getting ready to go back. I really enjoyed having them home all day. It was fun and gave us a chance to explore and do things we couldn’t do during the school year. Staying up late. Drive in movies that didn’t start until 9 pm. Road trips. I loved having them home all day long.

And I’m sad too because the time for my daughter and the kids to move is getting close. I’m not sure how I’ll handle it, at least at the beginning. It’s the end of one phase, and although that means it is the beginning of another one, I’m still sad.

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Just when I thought things were turning around for me, health wise, they seem to have taken a side road. I might still be okay with things but I did take a detour.

Those of you that follow me on Facebook probably know that last week I ended up in the Emergency Room due to chest pain, numbness on my left side, and a rapid heart beat. After examining me, they admitted me for more tests. I spent two days there. At first they thought it was a stroke but tests showed it was not. Then they focused on my heart. We know I did not have a heart attack but we don’t know what caused the symptoms. The next step would be an angiogram  but because that is more invasive, they are holding off on that until we figure out if my symptoms will go away, stay the same, or get worse.

For now, I feel better and I am optimistic that things will improve. I am baffled by the symptoms. The rapid heart beat seems to come and go. The chest pains have stopped and the numbness is almost completely gone. They prescribed a medication to help my heart manage stress and some nitroglycerin pills. The thought is that if I get chest pain and the nitro helps it, it is most likely angina and they can treat that. If the nitro doesn’t help, then I have to get to the hospital as soon as possible and we’ll go from there.

It’s scary. I won’t deny that. I am trying to focus on the fact that I am feeling better and I am hoping that the symptoms won’t recur and trying to get back to the place I was when I wrote the previous post here about the little forward steps I was taking with my medical condition. Crossing my fingers. Saying some prayers. Shaking my head and wondering what else will go wrong!

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Every journey begins with one step. Big steps; little steps; they’re all steps. They all count.

I didn’t write about the bit of positive news that show the first steps in a long journey to finally recover from the storm of health setbacks. At my last appointment with the endocrinologist three weeks ago, I got a glimmer of hope. As you may remember, the insulin I have been taking was causing me to gain ten to twelve pounds per month. I pleaded with the doctors to put me on different medicines. My primary care physician seemed to think I was eating too much. I wasn’t. I’m not. I had been advised by the dietitian to have three to four servings of carbs (one serving is fifteen grams) per meal at minimum. I have only been having one such serving per meal. There was still no change in the weight gain. I even told the doctor which medicine had worked previously and what I wanted her to try. No luck. Finally I got her to go through with a referral to the endocrinologist last January. That doctor listened to me and thought I was right about the medication I wanted to try.

After three months, instead of gaining ten to twelve pounds each month, I had only gained three and a half. Yay! Still a weight gain but so much less. And the biggest news at that check up was that my HA1C, which is a test that shows how high blood sugar has been in the previous three months went from 8.2 to 5.5. That is in the non-diabetic range! So that’s much better.

And the kicker is that because I’m doing so much better, the doctor has reduced the amount of insulin I am taking by half. That means that I should be losing more weight soon. I’m still only having very few carbs and under one thousand calories per day. When I went to the orthopedic doctor eleven days after the endocrinologist appointment, I had lost four pounds! Yay!

Although these are very little steps, I’m pretty sure they are leading me toward a good outcome. It is the encouragement I needed. I am hoping that I will lose enough pounds to make getting around less difficult so I can start getting back to the things I like to do, like taking the kids for hikes or even for a short walk up and down the block.

So let’s hear it for little steps!

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