November 19, 2018

Decking the Halls

Fa-la-la-la....the decking of the halls has begun. I traditionally decorate for Christmas over Thanksgiving weekend, but for the first time in my life I'll be working through the holiday weekend. So, after much cleaning and getting rid of stuff and rearranging (that new love seat is being delivered Friday morning), the boxes of decorations were brought in.

At this point, the tree is up, but not decorated and some decorations are out, carefully placed in their spot of honor.  However, there is still much to do and it's not going to happen today since I have Bible study tonight. I might get one or two more things done, but that's it.

The rest of the weekend was good. I spent Saturday cleaning and reading (the new Stephanie Plum mystery arrived in Friday's mail). Tim came home early since it was our anniversary.

We had planned to go to Red Lobster and were there before 5:00 but the wait for seating was already an hour long! We decided to try Longhorn Steakhouse and only waited 20 minutes or so. We didn't mind as a good steak is a close second to shrimp.

Nothing good was showing at the theater so we just walked through the nearby Walmart, which is quite a bit larger than ours, looking to see if it had a couple of things I've been wanting to get but that our Walmart hasn't had. I scored on one item and had no luck on the second (but did find it online and it will be here next week).

Megan and Colton were in and out all weekend so there was lots of time with my little Boogie Man. He did give us all a scare Saturday evening by taking a tumble down his basement stairs. His cheek is bruised and his shoulder is scratched up, but otherwise he is fine. Megan and Cody will have to come up with something to keep him off the stairs since they are fixing the basement up as a large-scale entertainment area.

By the way, they are finding Hank (the chocolate lab pup) to be too much to handle. He is probably about 8 or 9 months old and cute as all get out, but he is VERY energetic and causing  a fair amount of damage in their home. That's causing a lot of stress and arguing. Since they are trying for baby number two, they are ready to admit Hank isn't something they can handle right now. So....would anyone like to adopt a chocolate lab?

November 17, 2018

Sunday Stealing: Back to Normal

Time to link up with the thieves at Sunday Stealing for a little meme fun.

Click the button to visit
Sunday Stealing.
This from our hostess Bev:

This one is easier, for us yanks who don't know Lamingtons from Snot blocks.  I stole this from a questionnaire on Swap Bot.  Thanks to Pandora for her questions last week.

1.What is your favorite animal?  My jealous little diva dog, Daisy. Her little nose is out of whack when she has to share me with our grandson.

2.Your dream vacation?  Two weeks at the beach. No kids. No grandkids. Maybe my husband. No plan but to do whatever whim leads me. Freedom to read and write as much as I want. Fresh seafood dinners. Walks on the beach. Shell collecting. Deep sea fishing. Riding a bike. Glorious sunrises and sunsets. No arguing or debating with anyone else about what to do or not do.

3.Last person's house you were in?  We stopped by our daughter's house earlier on our way home from dinner (Saturday evening).

4.Worst injury you've ever had?  I've never really had a serious injury. I've had a broken toe and I sprained my ankle. That's pretty much it.

5.Last play you saw?'s been so long I don't remember. The hubby hates theater so I don't get to go very often.

6.Ever go to camp?  Not as a kid, but I've been a counselor as an adult. I loved it! My kids grew up going to church camp in the mountains on the PA/MD border and they loved it, too.

7.Were you an honor roll student in school?  Yep. I graduated with distinguished honors.

8.What do you want to know about the future?  Nothing. I'd rather let it play out and find out as it happens.

9.Are you wearing any perfume or cologne?  If it hasn't worn off by now I have Bath & Body Works' Champagne Apple body spray on. I don't do actual perfumes or colognes because they kill my sinuses.

10.Are you due sometime this year for a doctor's visit?  That's pretty much something you can count on as you get older.

11.Where is your best friend?  Probably at home in bed sleeping.

12.Do you have a tan?  It's November in Pennsylvania....I'm practically so white I glow in the dark.

13.What are you listening to right now?  Colton is curled up beside me and we are watching Muppet Babies.  

14.Do you collect anything?  Books.

15.Who is the biggest gossiper you know?  That's easily the women I work with.

16.Last time you got stopped by a cop or pulled over?  It's been years.

17.What does your last text message say?  Luv you, too.

18.Do you like hot sauce?  Not particularly.

19.Do you need to do laundry?  Is the Pope Catholic?

20.What is your heritage?  English...Irish...Scottish...little German. Basically, I'm a W.A.S.P.

November 16, 2018

Saturday 9: Sentimental Journey

I'm linking up with Sam and the gang at the Saturday 9 on this cold, snowy Friday evening...because I hope to be up and cleaning and putting away the fall decorations first thing tomorrow. Because I hope to start my Christmas decorating in the afternoon. I usually decorate Thanksgiving weekend, but I will be working this year for the first time ever. If I don't do it this weekend I don't know when I will get it done.

Saturday is also our wedding anniversary. We're marking 34 years this year! Tim is working, though, so I don't imagine we will go out to dinner until Sunday.

Saturday 9: Sentimental Journey (1945)

Unfamiliar with this week's tune? Hear it here.

1) Doris sings that she has her bag packed. Tell us about your luggage. Is your bag easy to spot on the luggage carousel?  I was going to say it's pretty nondescript, but I forgot we got a new suitcase last year and it is red so I guess it's fairly easy to spot. I also tend to put a distinctive tag on my bags or tie something to them that's unique.

2) The release of this song coincided with VE Day, and so it meant a great deal to troops returning home from Europe. What song has sentimental value for you? Why?  Actually, this one means a lot to me. My dad loved big band music and that included this song. We danced to it at my wedding.

3) As a young girl, Doris was passionate about dance. Concentrating in the studio and performing on stage helped distract her from heartache and embarrassment over her parents' divorce. When you want to escape from what's troubling you, what do you do?  Either what I'm doing now (blogging, Facebooking, Pinteresting, etc.) or I grab a book and get lost in it.

4) Her dancing days came to an end when, at age 15, she was in a car accident and damaged her leg. During her recovery, she discovered how much she enjoyed singing with the radio, and was delighted to find others enjoyed hearing her. Tell us about a time you unexpectedly found happiness or success.  Is it horrible that I can't think of anything "unexpected" right now? I've been up since 2:30 this morning (couldn't sleep) and now at 9:00 my brain isn't running on all cylinders.

5) She moved from singer to actress in the late 1940s and was a major movie star for 25 years. She was paired with the most popular leading men of her time -- everyone from Clark Gable to Frank Sinatra to Rock Hudson. If you could share a kiss with any actor or actress, who would you choose?  Oh my, I've always had a thing for:

Kyle Chandler's Cary Grant-like handsomeness,

and for Oded Fehr's dark, Israeli good looks,

particularly during his years as the Magi in the Mummy movies. Everybody was fawning over Brendan Frazier in those and I only had eyes for....

and I can't forget my favorite silver fox, Sam Elliot.

Mercy, how's a girl supposed to choose???

(To be honest, as a married lass, I can only imagine.)

6) 1968 was a terrible year for Doris. First, she suddenly became a widow. Then she discovered that her late husband and his business partner had squandered her money and she had to file for bankruptcy. Oh, wait! There's more! She also found that, in his role as her manager, her late husband had, without her knowledge, committed her to a weekly TV series. Do you have a 1968? What year you can point to and say, "Wow, I'm glad that's over"?  2002 and 2010, and that's all I'm going to say about that.

7) After retiring from show business, she became an advocate for animal welfare. She has said we should be more sensitive to the loneliness, sadness and guilt people feel when they lose a pet. Think of a time you were grieving. What words or gestures helped you through? Conversely, what's something no one should ever say to someone who is hurting?  Usually, any kind word, if it's from the heart is comforting. The only thing I can think of that sets my teeth on edge and that I've heard a lot of others complain about, too, is saying you know just how someone feels. No, you don't. Everyone experiences grief in their own way. While sharing experiences can be helpful eventually, I don't find it to be a good thing when someone goes on and on about their experience and makes it all about them.

8) Doris' only child was her son, record producer Terry Melcher. Terry had a successful, years-long collaboration with The Beach Boys. Do you have a favorite Beach Boys song?  Either Fun, Fun, Fun or Kokomo.

9) Random question: What's one thing you've never done, but have always wanted to try?  There are lots of things, but for simplicity's sake I'll say ride in a hot air balloon.

November 15, 2018

Thankful Thursday

I am off to work in a just a little bit, but I think I can squeak in my Thankful Thursday post. Linking up with the intrepid Rebecca Jo @ Knit By God's Hand.

This week I am thankful...

** for local, small town businesses that still treat you like a person, not just a consumer. I stopped by a local furniture store on a whim yesterday to look at recliners/chair-and-a-halfs/love seats to replace the cuddle chair. We've messed the cuddle chair up somehow and it doesn't recline quite right and it takes a lot of muscle to close it. Since Tim is not a fan of it anyway, I thought I'd start looking around at options.

Our local store, literally less than 5 minutes from home, was willing to make any deal I suggested within reason. I was only intending to look but ended up buying a love seat that has power recline, power close, and power headrests. It also has a small console in the middle to hold remotes, drinks, etc. Oh, and jacks to plug in cell phones and computers! They sold it to me for the price of one without the 4 motors to power everything and gave me free delivery...on Black Friday! I couldn't pass it up.

** that my daughter keeps coming over every day to love on my Daisy girl and let her out. It eases my guilt a little over leaving her at home every day.

** all of Mom and John's medical appointments have gone okay this week.

** the rain doesn't seem to be freezing like they said it would. I would not be happy if I had to drive to work on ice.

** for 34 years with the same guy! This Saturday is our anniversary. How blessed we are was driven home this past week when I learned one of my co-workers whose messy, ugly divorce just became final, was married on the exact same day and year we were.

** as always for each one of you!

Sorry to drop a few lines of thanks and run, but I really have to get going to work. Have a blessed and beautiful day!

November 14, 2018

Wednesday Medley

Brrrrrr! It's a chilly morning here in southwestern PA. The temperature is down around 20 degrees and our expected "high" is only 32. Winter is beginning to make itself known. Tomorrow morning we'll be dealing with freezing rain and probably ice accumulations and Friday morning should bring snow! So, brrrrrr, indeed! 

It's my day off and Wednesday so I'm linking up today with Terri @ Your Friend From Florida for the Wednesday Medley.

1.  With the holidays coming, what is your most essential appliance to help you prepare for the celebrations?  

None. Thanksgiving is always my mom's holiday. She does the cooking. I offered to cook some of the side dishes this year, but she turned me down.

2.  What is your favorite (clean) word?  

I can't think of one word that is my favorite, but I am partial to words associated with common courtesy and good manners....thank you, please, it's a pleasure to meet you, etc.

3.  Are you a good judge of character?  

I think so, because I am an observer of people. I rarely make snap evaluations.

4. What is the last thing you took a picture of? Can you share it with us?  

Hmmm.....thinking....I believe it was a picture of my grandson. Yes, I can share it.

5. Tomorrow, November 15, is Clean Out Your Refrigerator Day.  How do you intend to celebrate?  

I had no idea! However, now that you brought it up, I suppose our refrigerator could do with a little neatening up. At the moment, there aren't a lot of leftovers or anything else that needs cleaned out.

6. Tell us something random about your week!  

Tim saw the endocrinologist on Monday. He says the doctor didn't seem to think his parathyroid is the problem. I'm not sure he understood correctly because the doctor did order more blood work and some of it is related to the parathyroid. The rest seem to be looking at the pituitary gland. It depends on the results of those tests whether Tim even sees that doctor again. If it turns out the doctor doesn't feel he needs to see him then we are on hold until he can see the rheumatologist in March! It's so frustrating because Tim is in a lot of pain all the time.

November 13, 2018

10 On Tuesday: Christmas Movies

In honor of the fact that I am already watching schmaltzy Hallmark Christmas movies at the rate of at least one a day, I decided to share my top 10 Christmas movies. It's quite possible you won't agree with all of my choices because when it comes to Christmas movies, the cheesier and more over the top they are, the better I like them! (FYI: I did not include the animated Christmas shows. That's a whole other category.)

10. A Christmas Carol. All versions of this classic are good, but the one with George C. Scott is my favorite. He is the scroogiest of Scrooges!

9. Scrooged. Bill Murray is yet another over-the-top SNL veteran whose antics greatly amuse me.  Scrooged is a modern-day retelling of A Christmas Carol that, while really funny, is also maybe a bit darker because of some of the modern elements and the special effects.

8.  The Santa Clause.  Tim Allen’s second appearance on my list.  I like this one for a million goofy reasons like:  elves with attitude, Santa’s strut to Sharp Dressed Man and an endless parade of truly ugly sweaters.

7.  Jingle All The Way.  I love action heros when they get all silly and Arnold is the best.  Here he is, the former governor of California, and he doesn’t take himself too seriously.  In Jingle All the Way he’s in a mad-capped race against a mailman, played by Sinbad, to find the last Turboman action figure in town.  What parent hasn’t been there?

6.  Surviving Christmas.  This is Ben Affleck’s foray into the Christmas movie scene.  He is hilarious (and also touching) as a filthy rich guy who has no clue about human relationships or Christmas.  He hires himself a family to live out his idea of the perfect family Christmas.

5.  It’s A Wonderful Life.  Well, you knew this one would be on the list didn’t you?  Jimmy Stewart is so cornball, you gotta love him.  And this movie taught me that, "Every time a bell rings, an angel gets his wings." 

4.  How The Grinch Stole Christmas.  Oh, man I just love Whoville!  It doesn’t get any cheesier than this.  Do you not love the houses?  The clothes?  The hair?  And I have sooo got to get me one of those guns that shoots Christmas lights onto your house.

3.  White Christmas.  As I tell my kids… ain’t Christmas till Bing sings White Christmas.  I love the elaborate sets and musical numbers and Danny Kaye is a hoot.

2.  Christmas Vacation.  This is one movie the family doesn’t complain about watching.  We have worn out two copies and it is still a part of our holiday traditions.  Nothing says Christmas like Cousin Eddie pumping sewage into the storm drain.

And the number one movie on my must see list....

1.  A Christmas Story.  I’ve worn out a couple copies of this one, too, even though TBS shows it for 24 hours straight every Christmas.  This is the bestest, funniest Christmas movie ever made and it’s become tradition for the whole family (and anyone else here) to watch it together one time on Christmas Day.  I pretty much know it word for word.

There you have it.  Now when you’re feeling stressed by all you have to get done before the fat guy in the red suit pays a visit, you know what to do.  Get your hands on one of these movies, pop some corn, put your feet up, laugh your hiney off and forget about it for a while.


If you make it through all of those and still need some holiday movies to watch, other recommendations include:

Home Alone, elf, The Homecoming (the original Walton's movie that started it all), Deck the Halls, Christmas with the Kranks, The Christmas Shoes, Fred Claus, Christmas Comes to Willow Creek, The House Without a Christmas Tree, Four Christmases, Single Santa Seeks Mrs. Claus, and Ernest Saves Christmas.

November 12, 2018

Playing a Little Catch Up

Good Monday morning and happy (observed) Veterans' Day to you! For some of you that means a day off work. Enjoy!

I am not among the lucky who have the day off. In fact, everyone in my department has to work today as we have a big Veterans' Day program this afternoon. I don't know exactly what all is going on, but we sure made a lot of decorations and my boss sure stressed over it. I hope it goes well and lets our residents who are veterans know just how much their service is appreciated.

There isn't much to tell since I spent the whole weekend working. It was another weekend in which we were short-handed. What is with people? They know the requirements of a job when they interview and agree to it...then they call off all the time.

The state says we are "over-employed" as in we have more employees on payroll than we need to staff the place. Unfortunately, I see the same handful of faces over and over. They are offering nurses absolutely ridiculous pay/benefit packages trying to get good ones who will work, but it isn't working that way. My department is the only one that doesn't have constant call-offs. That's because my boss will fire anyone who doesn't want to work.

To catch you up on Tim's health "adventure"...  He sees the endocrinologist about his parathyroid today. I hope they get really on this right away because he is complaining of pain more and more and it seems to be spreading upward through his body. I'm praying it hasn't done any permanent damage.

As for for the rheumatologist and the whole Lupus issue, we can't get a "new patient" appointment until March 22! Apparently, rheumatologists are in high demand but few and far between. We're on a waiting list in case anything opens up sooner, but I'm not holding my breath. If they are that in demand, I doubt all the people in front of us will cancel.

And my thoughts concerning learning who my father is are a little calmer. I do thank all of you for your input, prayers, and advice and believe me, I've considered all of it. I still don't know if my son plans to reach out to the cousins tipped him off to. What I do know is that I am not personally going to do any reaching out. I have to consider my mom's feelings, my father's family's feelings, and my own heart. If my son contacts them and they express interest in meeting me...then I promise to at least be open to considering the possibility. I trust that if and when the time comes, the Lord will lead me to the right decision.

Now since I don't start work until noon today, I am off to get caught up on A Million Little Things.

To all veterans...

November 10, 2018

A Very Different Sunday Stealing

I'm linking up with the thieves at Sunday Stealing today. Our intrepid hostess, Bev, has this to say about today's unusual questions:

Now for something different.  I hope you'll find it fun.  Pandora has been doing Sunday Stealing for years, even though she's in Australia and can't relate to many of the questions, so I invited her to submit an Australia-related set of questions. She checked these with friends and says that Australians could easily answer them.

Many of these you won't be able to answer, but give it a try--and understand how Pandora feels!  (I printed all of them because I figure you'll skip many -- feel free to check Google and learn some new things!)

1. Where to you land on the subject of vegemite? My daughter brought a sample back from her trip to Australia. I was the only one in the entire family that was willing to give it a try. I can say I've done that. Good thing, because it won't happen again. Ugh!  What is the optimum butter/vegemite ratio? 100% butter and 0% vegemite!  Do you also eat Promite or Marmite or do you see these yeast spreads as something akin to treason? I get brand loyalty. Just ask me about ketchup (it's Heinz all the way in this house). That said, if they taste anything like vegemite...I'm sure they're equally gross to my American taste buds.

2. Who was your favourite Prime Minister of the last ten years? (There have been five – choose wisely)  I know NOTHING about Australian politics so no favorite to claim.

3.  Are you a Monarchist or a Republican? Why?  Having read what they are all about, I'd say I'd still be a Republican on the other side of the world.

4.  What do you think of our current head of state?  Since I don't know anything about Australia's politics it's hard to have an opinion. I read one article and from that it sounded like he has some sound ideas, but I'm sure that just like our American politics it's way more complicated than that.

5.  What are your feelings on compulsory voting?  Are we talking about forcing someone to vote? I'm not in favor of that at all. I think voting should be everyone's right and privilege, but to force people who aren't informed on current affairs or about the candidates is pure folly and also just plain wrong.

6.  What is your favourite footy food?  I tend to like dips, pizza, or nachos.

7.   Your Nana is having her 80th catered for by the CWA. What CWA standards are you looking forward to at the spread? The Victoria Sponge? Yoyos? Asparagus Rolls? Brandy Snaps?  I'm up for anything with brandy in it.

8.  What do you do on ANZAC Day?  Probably the same thing I do on our Memorial or relax if I'm lucky enough to get the day off and of course pause to remember and honor all the brave men and women who have served our country.

9.  Discuss the merits of budgie smugglers.  Not really a fan of the look for most.

10. What is outside your back door? Gumboots or thongs?  Neither is outside, but both are inside.

11. As a kid you were given 20 cents for pick and mix. What will be in your bag? Teeth? Spearmint leaves? Gobstoppers? Freckles?  Of those? Maybe the spearmint leaves, but I'd have gone for gummy orange/fruit slices, Sweet Tarts, and Jolly Ranchers.

12.  Redbacks or Huntsmen? Not a cricket fan.

13.   The Mullet. Discuss.  They should have stayed in the 80s. Unless we are talking about the fish? Then I have no opinion.

14.   Kath or Kim?  I haven't seen the show so no opinion.

15.   Cricket – which code do your follow? Why? Do you think that 20/20 games are sacrilege?  I have no idea.

16.   Football. Which code do you follow? Do you have an opinion about Collingwood or Essendon?  My opinion is that it's soccer not football. ;)

17.   Do you agree that the lyrics to Khe Sahn should be on the citizenship test? Do you know the words to Khe Sahn?  Nope, not a single word.

18. What is your favourite public holiday? If you're in Victoria, which do you prefer? The day off before the AFL Grand Final or Melbourne Cup Day?  They give you days off for sporting events???  Pack my bags!

19.   What do you do at Christmas? Ham sandwich on the beach? Seafood and salad next to the pool? Endure a full English roast with all the trimmings when the thermometer is pushing 35 degrees centigrade outside?  If I'm not having my American feast then seafood and salad by the pool sounds heavenly.

20.   Ford or Holden?  I'm a Ford girl on two continents.

21.   What is the best Australian invention ever? (And yes, the Hills Hoist can be mentioned)  Wow...did a search and there are so many to choose from. I think for simplicity's sake I'll just say Wi-fi.

22.   Describe the following:

    Fairy bread - sugar overload
    Lamingtons - they'd be good if not for the coconut
    Chiko rolls - sound totally yummy
    Snot blocks - might be okay but I'm not a big fan of custard

23.   What are the following traditional items found in all Australian homes?

    Dead horse - tomato sauce
    Hills Hoist - round clothes line
    A slab - 24 cans of beer
    A ute -  a utility vehicle

24.   Who is your all time Australian hero?  Crocodile Dundee?  Sorry, I don't know any Australian heroes off the top of my head.

25.   Translate the following: “Strewth! Nev was going flat out like a lizard drinking. But he had a nana nap and he's raring. Told him to get here pronto by not to miss the gate cos it’s impossible to chuck a u-ey for miles. Told him to bring a slab. We’ll have a barby. The kiddies can have snags. Joe the Pom will moan about everything. Jeez, he’s a bastard. Yeah…nah… no flies on him. “  Something about it being the truth that Nev was really dragging but had himself a nap and is raring to go now. Told him to hurry up and get here and not to miss the turn because he can't make a u-turn for miles. Told him to bring a 24 pack of beer and we'll cook on the grill. The kids can have sausages. Joe will complain about everything.

26.   What is your favourite Australian holiday spot?  I don't know. I think I'd like to visit the Great Barrier Reef and swim the big fish my daughter had her picture taken with.

27.   Do you eat the coat of arms?  I have no idea.

28.   You are stuck in a lift with the following: Karl Stefanovic, Peter Dutton and Alan Jones. Who do you kill last?  No idea who they are and it's getting too late to be looking everything up.

29.   What is the NBN?  A television network?

30.   “Where the bloody hell are you?” Discuss.  I'm at home in my living room.

31. Complete the following sayings.

    Am I ever going to see your face again? ..................................................
    You're terrible, ...........................!
    Coupla days, ...............................

Nah, I'm just too tired to search. I have to work tomorrow.

32. Potato scallops or potato cakes?  Potato cakes.

33. Provide three uses for cane toads.  Nope. I'll read everyone else's answers tomorrow evening and be enlightened.

34. If you give a politician a koala to cuddle, what is the likely outcome?  From what my daughter told me, he's going to end up stinking like eucalyptus.

35. Bagpipes are perfectly at home in rock songs. Discuss.  They can be. I've heard some pretty awesome pipes.

36. What is a Tim Tam Slam?  No idea.

37. If I ask for a FruChoc, where am I from? What are FruChocs?  Somewhere in Australia and I don't know what they are.

Good night!

November 9, 2018

What a Tangled Mess We Weave

This post may be a bit of a rambling mess. Something huge (in my life) happened yesterday and I am still trying to process it. I really don't know how I feel. After 54 years...I finally know the name of my biological father.

I wasn't always aware that my dad wasn't my father. I found out when I was 10 that he had adopted me when he married Mom. It's always been a taboo subject and Mom has refused to name my father or tell me anything about him. I thought she might tell me about him after Dad died, but she held tight to her secrets.

Enter my son's interest in all those DNA tests that are available. He and his wife have done more than one. The latest was the one. The one that promises to send you names of those genetically related to you. He recently was given two names, both shared a surname and Ancestry said they were his genetic first cousins...that only happens when you share a grandparent. We didn't think my father-in-law had ever cheated on my mother-in-law so that made it probable, if the tests were accurate, that the link came from my missing in action father.

Afraid that my son might blindside Mom, I broached the subject yesterday. I just asked if the surname my son was given meant anything to her. I was stunned when she said it did and that after 54 years she guessed she should tell me about my father. Whoa.

Dear old Dad was a vocational agriculture teacher at the time I was conceived and went on to become a county extension agent. He had 4 or 5 siblings and has always lived in Mom's hometown...not far from my grandparents' home where I spent much of my childhood. He's still alive and about 81 years old. Obviously, he had at least one other child. 

My son asked me if I wanted to meet these people. I don't know. I'm curious, of course, but I also doubt the cousins or even their parents know of my existence. I don't want to throw their lives into turmoil. As for my father....he definitely knew about me. He paid the hospital bill when I was born, but has never asked about me once in 54 years. I'd say he made it pretty clear he didn't want me. I'm not sure I want to ever meet him. I'm not sure I can handle meeting least not without saying some things I'd regret. And then there is that little devil on my shoulder saying he deserves to be exposed to his family as the jerk he was. There is also the fear that they do know (I'd imagine his siblings must) and they also rejected me.

My mind is reeling. I always knew I had relatives out there, but it was in a kind of nebulous, fairy tale kind of way. It just got real. I have aunts and uncles, siblings, nieces and/or nephews. One uncle passed away a couple of years ago so there is no chance I will ever know him.  

I've been searching the internet ever since hoping to find pictures. I just want to see him and know, do I look like him or any of the family? I can only find a picture of the one who died. Maybe there are some resemblances. Maybe. The rest of the siblings appear to be old enough that they don't have a presence on the web.

If anything comes of this, I'll let you know. Oh, and I guess there really shouldn't be any doubt about the accuracy of those DNA tests.

November 8, 2018

Thankful Thursday

Good morning, all! It's Thursday so I am linking up with the lovely Rebecca Jo @ Knit By God's Hand to reflect on all that I am thankful for today.

This week I am thankful...

** for frosty November mornings! It's true. I actually like these colder (not the bitter freezing temps of mid-winter) days when it gets dark earlier. I love that it brings everyone together inside in the evenings. I love seeing the welcoming light of home shining out through windows. I love the warm cozy glow of candles and the heavenly smells that go with them. I love a crackling fire to warm up in front of. I love fleecy throws and snuggly pups and rich, hearty, comfort foods. I love....well, you get the idea! 

** for this morning and the end of a very long night. Y'all know I am often plagued by leg/foot cramps. Last night (just as A Million Little Things was coming on...grrrr) I was launched out of the cuddle chair by the sudden onset of cramps in both shins. Not so uncommon, but this time I just couldn't seem to get them stretched out. I broke out into a cold sweat almost immediately. I felt nauseous and very much like I was going to pass out. I'll even admit to moaning and crying out a few times. I made it to the kitchen and clung to the sink for a long time (it was cool and I had my forehead resting on it) before I thought I could get to the bed. I barely did, I was so out of it. I laid there for a while before falling asleep, but I was back up many times through the night as the cramps threatened to return. The cramps are still just on the fringe of things this morning, but so far so good. For that I am very thankful.

** for all of the brave men and women who have served this country throughout it's history. We have been making plans at work for a big Veterans' Day celebration this coming Monday and it has been humbling and awe-inspiring to learn the stories of our resident veterans. Just yesterday I went searching to find out if there were veterans in the dementia unit and discovered one man was an Army medic in Korea and did something worthy of earning a Bronze Star! I would love to hear the story. I hope to catch his family one day and ask.

** for having my little Boogie Man snuggled up beside me this morning watching his favorite Disney Junior shows while his mama is at the eye doctor's.

** for the end the current election season (though I suspect things will begin ramping up for the 2020 presidential campaigns very soon) and all the nasty commercials and piles of mailings and Facebook arguments. Now if only both sides and the news media would stop rehashing it.

** for the play date Colton and Mommy have today. My girl doesn't have many (true) friends. She has always been one to burn bridges whenever she got a boyfriend or if she does hang on to a friend, it always seems to be one who treats her badly or is a less than great influence in her life. The only "friends" she has these days are the wives and girlfriends of  her husband's friends and she doesn't really like them and they don't really like her. 

The daughter of a former pastor of ours is starting a group of young moms and invited my daughter to an organizational meeting recently. She hit it off with one of the other moms and they both have boys the same age. That's who is coming over today. Better than the ones who do nothing but party and talk about her (and everyone else) behind her back. Praying they begin a solid friendship.

** for what looks to finally be the answer to what has been wrong with Tim for the last 6 or 7 years!  I'm feeling hopeful for the first time in ages that things just might eventually get better.

** a great night with my Bible study group. We never got to the lesson, but had a great discussion about the end times instead.

** as always, for each one of you! Have a blessed day and end to your week!

November 7, 2018

Wednesday Medley

Linking up with Terri @ Your Friend From Florida today.

What is your claim to fame?  Eh, I'm not sure I have any "fame."  I tend to be the family cookie baker, I write and journal, and I read/collect books. I'd guess those are what I'm most known for.

What is something you like to do the old-fashioned way?  Talk on the phone. I loathe texting.

What did you think you would grow out of but haven’t?  Biting my nails (but only under stress), watching cartoons...especially the holiday ones, laughing when the ketchup "farts." I could go on and on.

What is the dumbest thing you’ve done that actually turned out pretty well?  Quitting college to get married. We'll be marking 34 years this month!

If you had to change your name, what would you change it to?  I'm okay with the name I've got, but if I had to.....I think I'd go for something really out there like, maybe...Serendipity! LOL

What is something random you can tell us about this week?  Tim saw the doctor on Monday and while the news isn't great, it does look like maybe we are finally onto some answers for the extreme exhaustion and random aches and pains that have been keeping him (and me) from having much of a life the last 6 or 7 years. We will know for sure, I guess, after he sees a couple of specialists but blood work indicates that he almost definitely has hyperparathyroid disease and possibly Lupus. Both cause pretty much all of the symptoms he's been experiencing and that he may have both...well, he didn't stand a chance of living normally. Please keep it and him in prayer. He meets with one specialist next week. The second, we have to find another as the one he was referred to doesn't take our insurance.

November 6, 2018

Tuesday 10

1. It's election day. Thank goodness. I'm not sure I could be any more tired of or disgusted with all of the politcal ads.

2. Keep calm and remember no matter who wins today, the bottom line is that God is in control. Even if he didn't choose a candidate, he allowed them. His ways aren't always our ways, but he knows what he's doing.

3. We may finally have answers in the quest to find out what is wrong with my husband. He saw the doctor yesterday after the latest round of blood work showed his parathyroid is totally out of whack. His blood calcium levels are off the charts. The blood work also showed high for something that indicates Lupus. Either thing alone would account for all the symptoms he's been experiencing for quite a few years...put them together and it's a wonder he can function at all. Anyway, he has to call and make appointments with specialists today. The Lupus is still iffy, but he will probably end up having surgery to remove 3 of the 4 parathyroids according to our PCP.

4. It's raining. Again. For those of you experiencing drought conditions...I wish I could send some of this to you. At the rate we have been getting rain this year year, we're probably going to start seeing babies born with webbed feet!

5. Grandpuppy Hank survived his weekend at the kennel and the staff worked with him so his behavior is even a bit better than it was when he first went. Megan brought him over yesterday to see how he'd do with Daisy....unfortunately, that didn't go any better than before. Daisy is part of the problem there. Yes, Hank is hyper and excited about seeing her, but she is also a territorial old grump who is scared of him, as well.

6. The holiday movie season is gearing up and I already have 3 on my list...that I will probably have to wait for the DVD release to see...A Star is Born, The Nutcracker, and The Grinch. You never know, though, if Tim has to be off some for his health he may be more inclined to see a couple of them.

7. Hallmark has already kicked off its Christmas movie season. I watched my first one the other day and I just found out the one based on a book I read a couple of months ago debuted this past Saturday. I will see if I can watch it On Demand on Thursday.

8. I really like the woman who won the big Powerball jackpot. She really has her head on straight and I am impressed by how she talks about her "responsibility" to take care of people and do good with the money. One of the first things she did was establish a charitable foundation in the name of her late grandson. I wish her well and pray the money changes her life only in good ways.

9. One of the other full-time activities persons is applying for a job in another part of the company. If she gets it, it will mean hours of 8-4 Monday through Friday. If I had known about it before her, I think I would have applied. Oh well. If she does, I think I will apply for her job. It would mean not working in dementia any more, but it would also mean no more 12-8 least if they kept it structured the same for me...and if they will even let me do it since not everyone is trained to work in dementia and I have more training than everyone but the two full-time dementia activities persons (and some activities people don't get trained in dementia at all).

10. Well, I am off to start a busy, battling the lines to vote, and then Bible study.


November 3, 2018

Sunday Stealing: Waxing Nostalgic About Vapo Rub Fumes

Thanks go to Bev of Funny the World for "stealing" another week's worth of fun questions. If you enjoy this sort of thing and would like to join in, just click the button!

This is stolen from Freaky PopTart

1. What's the coldest temp you've experienced?  Right now I think it's my living room...I'm freezing!! Okay, I can't swear it's the coldest, but one morning last winter the temperature at work was -25 degrees. 

2. What's for dinner tonight?  We tried a new restaurant with friends tonight, Lupi & Leo's. Tim had seafood jambalaya, I had their signature burger with onion and bacon jam. We also had a garlic bread pizza for an appetizer and pumpkin spice bread pudding for dessert. We will be going back.

3. Would you consider moving to Australia?  Once upon a time I'd have had my bags packed before I had finished reading the question, but the older I get, the more I believe "there's no place like home."

4. What was your favorite subject in high school?  Any and all of my literature classes.

5. How many hours a day is your tv on?  I rarely have it on during the day, but Tim turns it on as soon as he gets home and it stays on until I turn it off when I go to bed. He also has it on for a while in the morning before he leaves for work, so...maybe 6 hours? Not that we're actually watching it all that time.

6. Have you ever received an award?  Yes, but not recently.

7. Whats your mousepad look like?  It was a freebie from the Paralyzed Veterans or someone like that. It has an American flag and the top part of the Constitution.

8. How many browser tabs do you have open right now?  Three.

9. If you are a parent, have you or did you ever put Vicks VapoRub on your children under the age of 2?  I don't think so. Vicks was sort of out of favor when I was raising my kids. 

10. As an adult, do you like the scent of Vicks VapoRub? I can't say that I like it, but I don't hate it. I had a lot of respiratory illnesses growing up so I was slathered in the stuff on a regular basis. I guess I'm used to it. Kind of like the taste of Robitussin.

11. If you had to pick one insect to infest your house for 1 day and after that day they would just suddenly vanish, which insect infestation would you pick?  Butterflies.

12. What color is your underwear that you are wearing right at this moment?  I'll never understand why so many of these quizzes want to know that. I'm a 54 year old gutchies aren't that exciting. However, if you must know, they are white with thin black stripes and little red hearts.