Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Positive Post Tuesday

I have decided to recognize the online people who were contributing factors to my letting God back into my life.

I was well on my journey in finding God when I started listening to Third Day at work. My boss listens to them intermixed with the rest of the music on his iPod. I first tuned in and heard the voice, and then started listening to the lyrics. Good music. Good message. I started feeling comfortable hearing His Word.

And then I started finding Christian blogs to read. Exposure therapy works. When I found Brody Harper, I found him to be 'your average run of the mill kinda guy' who had values and talked about things that meant something to the world. Although completely different from me and my background, he was someone I could relate too. He was another example of someone who I felt lived their life living God's Word. He wasn't preachy or pushy or in your (my) face.

I also read Anne Jackson, and Shaun Groves. Like my boss, these people I liked initially in spite of their being Christian, who ultimately I realized I like because they're Christian. And then I eventually found Pete Wilson. Pretty cool.

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Would You?

MercyMe have put out a plea to help James Christopher Allums find a bone marrow donor. He has a disease called Fanconi Anemia…which basically means his body doesn't produce enough bone marrow.I've wanted to register for many years, and have asked several times at the blood center, how I get listed on the bone marrow donor list. It's always seemed complicated. I called the Vegas office several times and never got any information mailed to me.

One would think (I would think) that they'd make it EASY for people to be tested and added to the donor list. The test is a simple cheek swab…no needles, just a cheek swab! So I've gone to this website and read more information and have emailed to have the kit sent to me. I really hope that I get the kit.

If you mention in the email that you're being tested in honor of James Christopher Allumns, the test should/could be free (for 2 days they say, instead of $65) but I'd pay the $65 even if it weren't free. Make it easy for me! For as important as this is to me, I can't for the life of me tell anyone why I've not done it yet.
To use MercyMe's text
"To order your free testing kit, go HERE

Remember…it’s free for 2 more days. After that, it’s $65. Don’t let the money stop you from being tested if you don’t get to it in the next 2 days, but don’t miss out on this opportunity to bless and maybe even SAVE a life!!!!

Remember to specify that you are testing in honor of James Christopher Allums."
Per the DKMS website, "You will need to confirm that you understand your commitment and are eligible. And, you will need to provide your mailing address and telephone number."

I've been donating platelets for many years now (8? 9? at least nine ... maybe 10?) If not for James Christopher do it for you.

Friday, December 26, 2008

Friday's Favorite

Here's a quote I'm sure you've heard before:
Some people come into our lives and quickly go.
Others stay awhile, make footprints on our
hearts and we are never, ever the same.
and to this list I want to add the following people who have all touched my life. Some have come and gone, others are here still with me. I'm deliberately leaving family I was born with/into off the list, although they're remarkable) :
  1. Mark
  2. Chuck
  3. Aunt Dottie (Alma Dorothy - who's name means nourishing soul and gift from God)
  4. Sheila (Until Sheila, I didn't remember what it was to have a girlfriend)
  5. Romy (who sent me a card with the coolest picture of her)
  6. Victoria (aka Toria)
  7. Risa Scranton (bestest friend for years, even after I left Albany)
  8. Lynne McCoy (I wonder if I could restore this friendship?)
  9. Rick (glad we've connected again)
  10. Danny (Goof)
  11. Stoney (many reasons)
  12. Joseph (innumerable reasons)
  13. Chicken Joe (happy to not have him a part of my life now, but he did shape me)_
  14. Neil Nordmann (he spelt his name ei - he was my first best guy friend)
  15. Casey Wimmer (after so many years since college, still a very dear friend)
  16. Nancy J. Darnell (God made us friends, love made us sisters)
  17. Diana Tanner aka Ditto
  18. Marcia Ianacone (could contact her again)
The glory of friendship is not the outstretched hand, nor the kindly smile, nor the joy of companionship; it is the spiritual inspiration that comes to one when he discovers that someone else believes in him and is willing to trust him with his friendship. ~ Ralph Waldo Emerson
and in writing this list, I got to Chuck and tears welled in my eyes. I am never the same. Each of these people, and so many countless others, who do count, shaped who I am.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Positive Post Tuesday

Thanks to Brody I'm on track for today's post.

My mom is visiting us for the holiday. She arrived after a full day drive on Sunday and a short drive yesterday morning. The weather is iffy for driving, we're getting SNOW!

My mom is wonderful. She knows what a messy person I am, organized in so many ways but a disorganized mess in so many others. We're getting a new kitchen at the end of January, so Mom's going to help me go through our cabinets and thin by HALF (that's my goal) all the stuff we have and don't need and/or use.

I posted a "Thank You" about my mom last month, so she gets double billing for Positive Post Tuesday.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Sunday Stuff

My week of randomness:
  • My sister arrived on Tuesday for a week visit. Of sorts. Her husband had a conference at Squaw Valley for the week. Then they were going over to Chico to visit the Sierra Nevada Brewery. But the roads had chain requirements so they're here a day early.
  • It SNOWED this weekend. Dusted. a little. More is better. Ski season is waiting.
  • Got news this week about "big changes" ahead for my job. Good news is I didn't totally flip out and cry myself crazy. This is always a good thing. God Bless St John's Wort.
  • Meant to donate platelets on Saturday, but had scheduled myself for whole blood not platelets (user error) so I rescheduled.
  • We went out to lunch on Saturday with Sheila and Hilly ... last minute invited Danny to join us and he and his wife Stephani actually showed. Very exciting fun times. Steph connected me to the next point...
  • Reconnected with an old climbing friend, Rick. Would make me quite happy to be able to post 'went climbing with Rick this weekend' type posts. Most happy indeed. We'll see.
  • Climbed in the gym with Danny on Sunday, my finger joints are not happy with me. Aging. Such is life.
  • Got the tree today - sister's husband and my nephew Hans (age 23) got it in the stand and put all the lights on - then my Alison actually helped Hans decorate it - and I helped. This is the first year in forever that it wasn't just me, which was rather nice.
  • Was emailing a friend about a scrpiture that I didn't know the reference I'd said: He knew me before [I even was] but then another friend informed me of the scripture, and I was surprised how close I was: Jeremiah 1:5 "...I knew you, before you were born ... " Huh - I was pretty darned close.
Yeah, so that about wraps up my week in review.

Saturday, December 13, 2008


It's Sarah's birthday today, go say
to her!

Pet Peeves on web pages

Things that drives me nuts:
  • Having to fill out an entire form again because I missed one required field. (or my password didn't match)
  • Clicking on "see larger image" and a new window opens up, with the same sized image I was previously viewing.
I'm sure there are more. But this is just a quickie.

Monday, December 8, 2008

Have You Given Back?

Makes a mother proud to hear:
"I like feeding people. Especially the homeless. It makes me feel good to hook them up with food." Josh

"I bought Buenos Noches Luna today. It was one of my favorites growing up so I gave it because some other little girl just has to have it." Alison

Life is Life

Oh this is just fun ...

Joseph told me if I ever catch him wearing pants like that, I'm to shoot him.

Sunday, December 7, 2008

Grief God & Believing

I woke up this morning feeling very sad. Today is nine years that Chuck has been gone.

Remembering 1 Samuel 7:12 (that I got at a church luncheon yesterday) has helped.

"Thus far has the LORD helped us."

Thank You God for this new day. On this day, nine years ago, my life started over. Thank You for carrying me through those dark times, and thank You for this new beginning in my life. Amen

Friday, December 5, 2008

Friday's Favorite

Friday isn't over yet, so I can still post.
My favorite thing I did online this week was take the Jung Typology Test and then get my friends to take the test too.

I am an ESFJ Extroverted Sensitive Feeling Judging
Sheila INFJ Introverted iNtuitive Feeling Judging
Three of my bestest guy friends are all ISTJ Introverted Sensitive Thinking Judging
Another guy friend is an INTJ Introverted Sensitive Feeling Judging
Another girlfriend is an ENFJ

I found it very interesting (in a most cool way) that Mark, Joseph and Danny all share the same personality type, and Stoney is only slightly different from them. I think that shows consistency in my personality trait in being attracted (not like THAT) to the same kind of men. I wonder what Chuck was?

Sheila and I are opposite in the first two traits, and the same in the second two. My other friend, Jen is opposite from me in only one trait. (and I tested as an Extrovert ... see how that falls in line with my recent post about Paying Attention?)

Now I'm curious to know what my other friends are? Come on, find out and post your reply. Rachel? Jackie? Sarah? Kelley? um ... if I've not mentioned your name, it's cause I don't know you read me.

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Paying Attention (again ... or is it still?)

I started this post and saved it as a draft back on Thanksgiving Day - if that's when Nov 27 was. I didn't publish it because I felt I was coming off whiny and negative, and that wasn't how I wanted to come across at all. So I saved it as a draft. But now, after a series of events, (three times a charm again) I am going to post it. I'm leaving all the original text as is and am going to put my new notes in a different color to differentiate them. Not that anyone cares about my thought process, but I need to keep them separate.

The original reason (reason #1 in my paying attention) I was going to post this was based on a reaction I had to my co-worker and friend Sarah's post. She was bummed and down on herself over a party she's trying to put together.
My friend Sarah is graduating from UNR on Saturday, December 6th, then she's got finals the next week. How crazy ridiculous is that, for the university to have graduation before finals? Totally ridiculous I say.

So here's the thing. Sarah is one of the kindest most gentle people I've met in life. I wrote about her for one of my Positive Post Tuesday posts. I didn't go on about all the nice things about her. Sarah doesn't realize how much like any of the rest of us she is. That's cause at age 24 (soon to be 25) she hasn't lived long enough to experience that other people are just as insecure and self conscious as her.

I know what it is to want to be the popular one.
I know what it is to want people to like me.
I know what it is to always feel 'second' best.

I can identify with Sarah, planning and organizing events has always been a very risky business for me. I've always considered myself shy, quiet and reserved. I don't expect people to actually want to come, so I don't plan anything.
Ok, so that's all I had originally said. Somehow I thought I'd said more. Maybe I deleted it.

And then, later on the weekend (this is #2 in the paying attention part of my story) I read a post on
"Where's My Damned Answer," the first post I'd ever read on the blog in fact, that really hit home. The post was titled "100 Day Challenge: Family stories". I had (and still have for that matter) no idea what the 100 Day Challenge is even about, but I read Carol's post. And I commented. Here's my comment:

I actually started to blog about this myself over the holiday, but since it sounded so negative, I decided against it.

I grew up under the shadow of my older sister. She was always “the out going one, and the pretty one,” which by default left me to be the shy one and the ‘not pretty’ one.

At age 44, I’ve finally realized I’m pretty darned outgoing myself, and I don’t think a single one of my friends would ever describe me as shy. I’ve always had a hard time believing my husband for thinking I’m beautiful. That one still stands. I’m just me, and that’s good enough.

I read this morning in the book I’m studying 1 Corinthians 15:10 - But by the grace of God I am what I am …

[I'd forgotten about 1 Corinthians I am what I am.... guess that makes reading the blog #3, since the scripture was #2. but who's counting, are you?]

So I posted my comment. Then later in the week (which would have been #3, but since I forgot about the scripture, it makes this #4 ...) I told Sarah about my aborted blog post - telling her face to face how we're all insecure beings at our core. And I told her all the things about her that I've always admired and respected in her. I told her not to worry about those people who she is trying so hard to develop friendship with. I said "The people you are going to be friends with in life, are going to be those people who like you for who you are just the way you are."

Ok, so on to #4, which by now is really #5. Apparently I won the "100 day Challenge" drawing for having posted my comment. I had totally overlooked Carol's reminder Remember to post on this or Monday’s post to be eligible for this drawing next week. And thus, I realized I guess I'd better post my post. And thus, here it is. Long winded and all. [sorry, I really am trying to be less wordy]

How does this all wrap up? And what am I paying attention too? I dunno. How's that for an answer? I just had the same subject come up time and time again. Five times in fact, in the past week. So this is my take away:

But by the grace of God I am what I am, and his grace to me was not without effect. No, I worked harder than all of them—yet not I, but the grace of God that was with me. Corinthians 15:10

I had to read it several times before the entire verse made sense to me. and his grace to me was not without effect means I noticed. It isn't in vain. I am aware of the truth that I am what I am, cause that's how I am made to be. I worked harder than all of them—yet not I, but the grace of God that was with me doesn't mean that I'm all that for being who I am, I am who I am because God is with me.

At least that's how it adds up to me.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Positive Post Tuesday

Today I'm writing about my mother-in-law. I've got two mothers-in-law actually. Lois is Chuck's mom, and over the past nearly nine years since he died, my love for her has done nothing but grow. I went over to her house Sunday night for a quick visit, and three and a half hours later I finally went home for bed.

This Sunday will be the ninth anniversary of Chuck's car accident. I've been doing pretty well with it. The Thursday before Thanksgiving was the anniversary of when he moved out of our home, and it didn't even dawn on me until after I'd gone to bed that night. I think it's weird how some years the anniversary doesn't upset me, other years it throws me for a loop. This year, I've been thrown for so many loops that this is just another one. I am extremely emotional all the time anyway, what's one more reason? At least this one's legit.

But anyway. Back to Lois. She was talking about a recent TIA (small stroke) she'd had, and how she's ready to go whenever the Good Lord takes her. She said she'd hate to have a major stroke and live impaired. Because I'm reading "The Purpose Driven Life," in a flash, a whole conversation went through my head. I used to work at an assisted living community, and many of my residents had had strokes, and were very impaired. But I realized there was a purpose for them surviving their strokes.

These people hadn't fulfilled their purpose in life. We all have many purposes, and one of theirs, in having survived a stroke, was that they allowed me to be caring and compassionate to them. God gave me that gift (and many other care givers) by allowing us to know and care for these incredible people.

I was never angry, or upset with God for taking Chuck. I thanked Him, for relieving Chuck of his pain and misery. That was the only purpose I knew or recognized. But now I have realized a greater purpose to losing Chuck. And in that brief flash of a moment (because the thoughts went through my head in far less time that it took to type them out or for you to read them) while talking with Lois, I realized one of the greater purposes of Chuck's death. His dieing allowed me to know his mom like I never did before. It allowed me to be there to comfort and love her like I never had before. And it brought me closer to God.

I'm still learning about God's purpose for my life, and how I can best live that life. But loving others, is the core. I've got that much down.

Sunday, November 30, 2008


What's goin on in Life ...

  • Yesterday we were cleaning freaks. I got our spare room all cleaned out and now we have room for guests! YAY!
  • Wrapped presents while "The Santa Claus
  • Went looking for floor tiles for our kitchen remodel - looking forward to actually getting a new floor. Maybe when we've got the kitchen gutted and ripped out with nothing there, I'll take pictures and post them.
  • Went to Sierra Gold for lunch with Mark and played some pool. Got my @$$ handed to me in an embarrassing way. My left thumb is taped from jamming it two weeks ago and I just didn't hold the cue right. At least I didn't bounce any balls off the table ...
  • Alison is making some awesome smelling soup that she'd better share...
  • Lyssa is working on a paper for school...
  • Mark is on the phone with first his brother, then his Grandmother, and now with Talya...
  • May go out and buy the floor tile now that we know how many we need ...
  • I need half and half for my coffee!
That's all the random stuff I think anyone is interested in. :-) Have a great week!

Friday, November 28, 2008

Friday's Favorite

WOW, holy cow. This is my favorite thing that happened today... I watched this video by these MercyMe :

Truly the best part of the day!!

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Positive Post Tuesday

I'm gonna cheat today and post a favorite Haiku that Mark wrote me.
Marching characters Stabbing across flat hard glass Echoes of your voice whispering through silent space bringing quiet joy to meIt's been over 7 years since he wrote this. I wish I'd dated them when he sent them.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Sanskrit Proverb

This has been posted all over the internet, and I always look it up for reference. The first four lines are my reality. And then it goes into the part about yesterdays, and tomorrows and TODAY well lived. I love this piece

Sanskrit Proverb
Look to this day
For it is life
The very life of life.
In its brief course lie all
The realities and verities of existence,
The bliss of growth,
The splendor of action,
The glory of power --

For yesterday is but a dream,
And tomorrow is only a vision,
But today, well-lived,
Makes every yesterday a dream of happiness
And every tomorrow a vision of hope.
Look well, therefore, to this day.

Read that again. Let it sink in. Really settle in. What strikes true and real to you?

... today, well-lived,
Makes every yesterday a dream of happiness
And every tomorrow a vision of hope.
Look well, therefore, to this day.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Friday's Favorite

The day has gotten away from me and I almost forgot to post! This quote is one that I just read in my daily email of inspirational quotes, so I can't claim it as an old favorite. But it is a NEW favorite!
To hold, you must first open your hand. Let go.
-Tao Te Ching
Let Go. Let God.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008


This is life, isn't it?

Other people's lives crashing down on yours. And they don't even notice.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Positive Post Tuesday

What's the best gift you've ever received? My mom gave me the gift of knowing my Dad loves me. My parents divorced when I was five, my older sister Dawn was seven. In the years that followed, we saw our dad every couple of years. Just recently I was telling a friend that if I put my mind too it, I could probably count, on two hands, how many times I saw my dad before I turned 18.

When they divorced, Mom moved us back to Wyoming, across the country from Dad, who stayed in Maryland (I think?). We didn't see dad but for every couple of years because he remarried, and lived abroad. I really mean abroad because that's where Thailand and Italy (and Iran, and Pakistan, and the Philippines, and China) are. The other side of the world. Dad would come back to the States for business and we'd go spend a week with him, wherever his business was.

But every Christmas, every birthday, we had gifts from Dad. Dad called us. Dad wrote us letters and told us he loved us. I don't remember ever doubting that Dad loved us. Our mom never spoke poorly of him, never bad mouthed him. She worked a full time job and one, two, sometimes three part time jobs to pay the bills. But she never complained that Dad didn't send enough child support, or that he was late.

As adults we learned that Mom called Dad the week before our birthdays to remind him to call us on the actual day. Love him to pieces, but he doesn't remember dates. The year I turned 19, when Mom hadn't called to remind him, he forgot my birthday. I got a card from him exactly one month late. He thinks I was born in May. ... but all that's okay because I know he loves me. It doesn't matter that he doesn't remember the date I was born. He loves me.

So, my Positive Post is about my Mom. Because she was the catalyst that always told me my Dad loved me. And he does. Forty Four years running, I've never had any doubt.

Thanks Mom!

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Life Is What Happens

A friend of mine is going through a rough time (actually, a couple of friends are). I was texting with one of them when they said something about life not turning out like they'd expected. To which I sent this quote. I was surprised that my paraphrasing it was so close:
"Life is what happens when we're making other plans"
I wasn't sure where the quote had come from, or who said it, but that's typical of me. I tend to see the Forest before the trees (John Lennon said it, but I swear it was lyrics in a song and can't remember/find the song). [edit: I found it ... Beautiful Boy (Darling Boy)
Before you cross the street,
Take my hand,
Life is just what happens to you,
While your busy making other plans,]
So, my friend, where you aren't the one I was texting with, yet you know who you are, this is for you.

Life is what happens when you're making other plans. Therefore, live for THIS DAY. Pastor Pete used this in his Five at Fifty five series ... RIGHT NOW is what you've got. Live for it, live IN it, and enjoy everything about it RIGHT NOW. LIFE is an incredible amazing gift, and it is GOOD.

Interesting ... I just had a small epiphany ... (small is good, big ones would probably cause my brain to explode) LIFE is the forest ... the days are the trees. If you focus on the details (trees), you miss the beauty of the life (the forest).

Then to further confuse myself: If the days are the trees, don't let the details of the day get in the way of enjoying it's beauty - enjoy the beauty of the tree

Tomorrow may never come. I learned that when Chuck died. Don't let the difficulties of what's going on in your life distract you from the JOY. And when you realize that I understood this before I understood God, it says a heck of a lot about this reality.

Live it.

Life Journey

I have decided to start a new book, one shared with me a year ago. A year ago I wasn't ready to start this journey but I am now. A Purpose Driven Life is a 40 day journey of discovering what God has in store for me. I saw the book at Borders on Friday, and I thought it was time to pick it up again.

Last year I got through the first few chapters, and didn't follow it as suggested in the introduction. But as I said, I wasn't ready for it yet. Then this morning, after church, I felt I should get going. So I picked it up to begin at the beginning, rather than pick up where I'd left off.

I got as far as the introduction when it was explaining the layout and format of the book, and how at the end of each chapter there are points to ponder, questions to consider, and discussion topics. (or something like that, I'm writing this from recall, without the book in front of me). In this intro, it suggested reading the book and working through it with a partner. I called my sister, Dawn, and asked her if she'd go through it with me, which meant she'd have to find the Borders and buy a copy for herself.

If I start today, 40 days from now is December 25. I thought of Sarah and Kelley too, if they'd want to join me, but I chickened out on asking them. (so if you (they) read this and want to join, let me know, cause now you know I chickened out in asking.)

Dawn bought a copy and we're going to start reading today, and have discussion on the weekends. :-) I am excited about this new journey. So here's to the journey (should find/create an image), maybe I'll post little snippets and ah ha's ... or maybe I'll keep it between God, Dawn and myself. We shall see....

Friday, November 14, 2008

Friday's Favorites: Quotes

Continuing my new Friday Theme ... Four of my favorite quotes. I find these ones very helpful reminders when I'm stressing out over stuff over which I have no control.
Everything works out in the end.
If it hasn't worked out, it's not the end. ~ Unknown

Life is not the way it's supposed to be.
It's the way it is. The way you cope with it
is what makes the difference. ~ Virginia Satir

It's nice to be important,
but it's more important to be nice. ~ Unknown

Your future depends on many things,
but mostly on you. ~ Frank Tyger
Do you have a favorite quote?

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Positive Post Tuesday

I am not singling out any one friend in particular on this post, but rather I am recognizing every single one of my friends in one fell swoop.

My friends are the most important people in my life. This week (ok, I am singling out a couple of them) Kelley, who is a former coworker, and Rachel, who is a current colleague, are standing out. But those words "former coworker" and "colleague" are impersonal and not very friendly.

I had coffee with Kelley on Sunday, and what had been planned as a quick catch up hour coffee, quickly disappeared into two and a half hours ... Loved catching up with her.

Rachel is at PubCon with us this week, and is my BUNKY .. yay I have a room mate!! I glove this girl, she's so authentic and REAL and easy to talk too.

I'm blessed to have these people in my life. And this is for them:
"The glory of friendship is not the outstretched hand, nor the kindly smile, nor the joy of companionship; it is the spiritual inspiration that comes to one when you discover that someone else believes in you and is willing to trust you with a friendship." - Ralph Waldo Emerson
I love that my friends have trusted me with their friendship, and I love that they believe in me.

Saturday, November 8, 2008

My Weekend

My weekends end up being kind of three day affairs because I typically come home from the office on Friday afternoon, so it ends up feeling like three days. It's funny Friday when I go to bed I keep thinking the next day is Sunday, but it's not.

Friday night Mark and I went to Smith's and bought some movies. We wanted to get "The Bucket List" but we didn't find it. So we ended up buying four other movies just cause they were there and I wanted to buy SOMETHING.
  • Two Week Notice - I picked this chick flick cause that's what I was in the mood for. The Bucket List isn't so much a chick flick, but certainly a tear jerker. I have a lot to say about this movie, I quite enjoyed it.
  • Star Trek Nemesis - Mark picked this one cause it was the last Star Trek movie
  • Walk the Line - Have heard so much about it that but have never seen it. Alyssa and Gary watched it last night
  • The Princess Bride - Mark has seen this and says I should
Then on Saturday, Alison and I had a girls day. We ate Zagol Ehiopian (mmmmmm good stuff!!!!) and went on a mission to find "The Bucket List." We found it at Tar-ghetto but I'd seen it $5.00 cheaper through Amazon, so I saved that cash and put it toward another four movies (Three of them were $5 each):
  • Girl Interrupted - Alison had seen this and highly recommended it. We rounded out our girl day watching it together - powerful, deep, insightful... I recommend it
  • The Terminal - This is one that I've thought sounded good but have never seen (like tens of hundreds others)
  • There Will Be Blood - Alison recommended this one and I thought Mark would like it
  • Must love Dogs - Sheila has recommended this one to me a couple of different times, and for five bucks, why not??
While watching the movie this afternoon I cracked open the handy dandy laptop and placed my order for "The Bucket List" which should arrive in time for next weekend. With our new library, and borrowed films from friends like Stoney and Joseph, just maybe Mark and I will catch up with movies??

And then there is Sunday ... and since it is Saturday night still, I can't tell what's going to happen except that at 10:00 I am meeting up with an old friend Kelley @ the starbucks (intentionally not capitalized thankyouverymuch) to catch up.

I'm anticipating watching movies in the afternoon. We have a lunch date, Alyssa is going to join us, and maybe Alison too. My heart is set on Bangkok Cuisine ... mmmm Pad Thai .. or or even better maybe, STEAK salad ...

Monday will be a short work day, show up at 8:30 to let Sarah in and give her the key. Pick up my boarding pass and then maybe lunch at India Kabob before my flight to Vegas. Jeeze, this entire post is about food.

Friday, November 7, 2008

Friday's Favorite

I had an epiphany today ... Every Friday I'm going to post one of my favorite quotes, poems or something that is a favorite something of mine.

I'm starting off with one of my favorite life philosophies:
Sanskrit Proverb
Look to this day;
For it is life,
The very life of life.
In its brief course lies all
The realities and verities of existence,
The bliss of growth,
The splendor of action,
The glory of power -
For yesterday is but a dream
And tomorrow is only a vision.
But today, well lived,
Makes every yesterday a dream of happiness
And every tomorrow a vision of hope.
Look well, therefore, to this day.
That's how I want to live my life, so that
every yesterday is a dream of happiness
and every tomorrow is a vision of HOPE.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Haiku 1

This is one of my very favorite that Mark wrote:
small flower bright
high meadow, beauty all round
brings me thoughts of you
I love you too Mark.

Quotes For Today

I got some really awesome quotes in my email today:
"You must live in the present, launch yourself on every wave, find your eternity in each moment." -- Henry David Thoreau

"Your profession is not what brings home your paycheck. Your profession is what you were put on earth to do with such passion and such intensity that it becomes spiritual in calling." -- Vincent Van Gogh

"There is no end. There is no beginning. There is only the infinite passion of life."
-- Federico Fellini

"Before you can inspire with emotion, you must be swamped with it yourself. Before you can move their tears, your own must flow. To convince them, you must yourself believe." -- Winston Churchill
I think I'm going to start posting my favorite quotes that I've collected over the years. And some haiku that Mark wrote for me many years ago.

These ones are great though, don't you agree?

Good Advice

Pete Wilson:

Today is a new day. It’s a new era. Regardless of who you voted for or why, it’s time to switch gears. It’s time to pray for Obama as he transitions to become the President of the United States.

And furthermore, you need to know this is not a surprise to God. Before the billions of dollars were spent on this campaign, God already knew the outcome. He wasn’t sitting around the television last night ringing his hands like you were.

He doesn’t need a Republican or a Democrat, an electoral vote, or a state. He’s not red or blue. He’s God.

He’s God and I’m not. You’re Not. Obama is not. McCain is not.

So if your candidate lost. I’m sorry. If you’re worried your issues aren’t going to be being addressed. I’m sorry. But God is still God and He’s still sitting on His throne.

Let’s move on.

Let's move on.
Wow. So true in so many ways.
Last night was a rough night, and I'm not talking about electoral results.
It was rough. I didn't cry. But I feel empty.

Might cry now though

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Blah Blah Blah Win Lose Or Draw

Today is indeed a historical day. Win or lose, it's a win for someone because as Brody Harper said in his "Positive Post Tuesday," we were gonna have the first Black president, or the first woman Vice Pres.

Congratulations America.

Positive Post Tuesday

My Positive Post is going up a bit late (probably after midnight Eastern Time) but I want to put it up all the same. Sarah is my co-worker at Pole Position Marketing . She's been with the company for nearly two years now. She's worked her tail off, working not only for Pole Position, but for up to 5 different part time positions that I'm aware of. And she goes to school at UNR. Full time. She deserves great respect for her efforts, and she's got it from me.


We've got a ton of changes ahead of us in the next few months, and I'm trusting that with Sarah and I sticking together, we're gonna be just fine. This Thursday we're planning on working 'remotely' from a coffee shop or the bookstore, or maybe the University or Community College ... as long as they give us wifi, we're gold!

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Beer Bread

Last year when we went to Laramie I came home with a case of Bitch Creek Beer (from the Grand Teton Brewing Company) and I shared several bottles with my friends. I thought the name was funny. The beer itself was quite unpleasant to my palate. bleck.

This year, I bought a variety of beer from Snake River Brewing Co. and was much more satisfied. My favorite was the OB-1 (site is in FLASH so I can't link you to the details) and the most retched of this lot was the "Zonker Stout."

My mom gave me a bottle of "Bitch Creek Beer Bread" over a year ago. I decided to make it today. I didn't have the specific beer called for so I used the nasty Zonkers.

And the bread came out pretty tasty. Far tastier than the nasty beer. But it still leaves a strange feeling on the back of the roof of my mouth. At least it doesn't foam in my mouth, like the beer did. Uck.

Sunday Sunday

Just typing that title had an old song go through my head:

Monday Monday, so good to me,
Monday Monday, it was all I hoped it would be
Oh Monday morning, Monday morning couldn't guarantee
That Monday evening you would still be here with me.

Monday Monday, can't trust that day,
Monday Monday, sometimes it just turns out that way
Oh Monday morning, you gave me no warning of what was to be
Oh Monday Monday, how could you leave and not take me.

Every other day, every other day,
Every other day of the week is fine, yeah
But whenever Monday comes, but whenever Monday comes
You can find me cryin' all of the time

Monday Monday, so good to me,
Monday Monday, it was all I hoped it would be
Oh Monday morning, Monday morning couldn't guarantee
That Monday evening you would still be here with me.

Every other day, every other day,
Every other day of the week is fine, yeah
But whenever Monday comes, but whenever Monday comes
You can find me cryin' all of the time

Monday Monday, ...

If that's not random enough for a Sunday:
  • Josh came over and made us Eggs Benedict for breakfast. At 1pm. Ok, so it was lunch, but it was breakfast cause I hadn't eaten yet.
  • We looked through photos of his dad's youth. Alison and I had looked yesterday
  • Alison is making tamale's ... Vegan tamales. She didn't believe the recipe that said "This is an all day project ..." and it truly is. She's wrapped more than a dozen and hasn't even made a dent in either the filling or the masa.
  • I need a nap.
The end.

Saturday, November 1, 2008

My Saturday ... and random thoughts

This morning I was talking with Joseph about the difference in today, as compared to last Saturday. Today is overcast, very gray and gloomy looking. Last Saturday was clear blue skies with warm temperatures. And yet I'm grateful for this day.

I just listened to a sermon given by one of my favorite bloggers, Pete Wilson, Pastor at Cross Point Church about the emotional baggage we all carry with us. I am looking forward to continuing the series. If you've been following my journey, you're in tune with my searching for a Christian community.

I've been attending Crosswinds church here locally, and listening to Pastor Pete (different Pastor Pete than from Cross Point) for a couple of months. I've enjoyed his sermons because they are very 'real' and he is very real and personable.

Now I've listened to the "other" Pastor Pete and I really enjoyed his sermon as well. Very different than Reno's Pastor Pete but the message is still very relevant.

Now I'm contemplating trying a different local church, to see how I like that one. When I was in Ohio in September I visited a church there, and can't say I cared a great deal for the sermon. Personal preference I suppose ... I can't get enough of either Pastor Pete - I can always continue to listen to the Cross Point Pastor Pete online.

But I need real people, in real flesh to worship with. Monday there is a "Women of Excellence" group that I'd like to meet with, and they're out here in my neighborhood.

I need people. Friends. There's something in the baggage I carry that makes it very important for me to have people. Because friendships are so important to me, I have a hard time letting them go. It's rough when I recognize that they aren't what I thought they were, or can't be what they once were. I've had one like that recently, and am struggling with it. So this series, by Pastor Pete of Cross Point, will be good for me.

Friday, October 31, 2008


My favorite blogger, Brody Harper, had asked us to"Be Honest" when he asked if we were going to vote.

I really meant to vote early. I really did. But for many reasons I can't even recall, it didn't happen. So, if I do vote, it will be on Tuesday with the rest of the procrastinators. I talked with my coworker Sarah today about the candidates and the issues we've got on the ballot (I really don't care a rats butt about the top office, the lesser of two evils is still evil and I can't get behind either of them) ...

Anyway, we were talking about how you know who's behind what issues. My friend Danny had Googled for information about them, and Sarah had used a state website. I was using VoteSmart.org but am no Googling for people in positions not on VoteSmart. Sarah's comment was that she flat out didn't vote for someone if they didn't have a website.

That is a brilliant plan I think. She made such a good point when she said "if they can't bother to let the public know what their positions are on issues, how then can they expect people to vote for them?" So I'm with Sarah. I've got my pre-ballot all highlighted and am ready to take it with me on Tuesday.

If I go.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Sunday, October 26, 2008

My Weekend In Bullets

Posts are always more fun with pictures, sbut I don't have any. Yet. They're on Joseph's camera. I borrowed this one from Stoney:

Here's the highlights of the weekend:

It started on Friday:
  • Left work at noon
  • Picked up Joseph - met Sheila in Carson City, leaving my car at a friend of Joseph's
  • Drove to Pleasant Valley Campground just North of Bishop, CA
  • Set up camp and helped Sheila make a MOST amazing meal
    • Shrimp sauted in garlic, with fresh tomato and avocado, all served over linguine )
  • Sat around the campfire until bedtime then crashed

Continued Saturday
  • Rise and shine at 7am ... Huevos Rancheros for breakfast (potatoes, eggs, salsa, cheese)
  • Off to Owens River Gorge to climb routes like this
  • Climbed a total of six awesome routes with Joseph as our belay slave
    • Pitstop wall
      • I led Low Octane 9***
        • I led it after her
    • Warning Signs wall
      • Sheila led Warning Laser Beam 8***
        • I led it after her
      • Sheila led Watch For Rocks 8***
        • I led it after her
      • I led Boating Prohibited 10a***
        • Sheila after me
  • AWESOME lunch of pita sandwiches
      • We TR'd Batting Cage 10c*
        • #5 for each
      • I led Wonka 10a**
      • Sheila TR'd Oompa Loompa 8**
  • Mile and a half walk up the road back to the parking lot and the car
  • TAILGATE party of beers and chips
  • Keough Hot Springs S. of Bishop for a nice soak and shower
  • Dinner at "Las Palmas" in Bishop
  • Got gas and pulled away from the pump with the hose still in the car
  • Back to camp for more campfire and BED
Wrapped up on Sunday:
  • Rise and shine early at 7:00
  • AWESOME breakfast burritos heated over the fire
  • Broke camp and headed for Mammoth Lakes on a scouting mission
  • Found a great climbing area pretty much IN Mammoth Lakes, we can go there with our husbands and climb half a day and hang with them the rest of the weekend.
  • Drove through the June Lake Loop and found another great area to camp and paddle canoes with our husbands
  • Back to Carson City for my car and back home (after dropping Joseph off)
TOTALLY AWESOME weekend!! Life is Good.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Dummy Check

  • Climbing pack
    • harness
      • prussic
      • belay device/ATC
      • belay/rap gloves
      • bail biners
      • PAS
    • helmet
    • shoes
    • chalk
    • quick-draws
    • Nalgenes
    • ROPE
  • Camping
    • Tent
    • sleeping bag
    • sleeping pad
    • Camp kitchen
    • Cooler (Sheila has food)
    • Water
    • Firewood
    • hatchet
    • newspaper
    • Chairs (2)
    That should cover it, aside from the normal clothing stuff. Yeah, so if you think of something I missed, it's too late cause I'm OUTTA HERE...

Wednesday, October 22, 2008


Fun Toy ... maybe I'll remember to do this regularly to see what I've blogged about. What's on my mind:

Create your own Wordle

This one is pretty cool, I copied my "favorite quotes" text and threw them in the Wordle and look what's the biggest:

What Do You Do?

What do you do when you want to write about something, but you know the (be they ever so few) people that read your blog, and that inhibits what you write?

Do you write it anyway? And having asked that, I now worry that someone who I'm not even thinking of is going to think I'm writing about them and that they're inhibiting what I write. But if I were to write what I have on my mind, the one person who thinks "oh, she's talking about me" would realize "Oh, she's not talking about me at all, it is about ______." And that other person, who really would be the subject of the post, has no idea.

Sometimes I write stuff that I know someone else is going to read, and I'm completely okay with that, with their knowing what's going on in my crazy little head. Sometimes writing is a great way to communicate something that is difficult to talk about. But then there's stuff that's difficult to talk about because you've beat that horse to death enough already. Having beat the horse to death though, doesn't really make the subject dead. The issue is still out there, unresolved.

Ugh. Sometimes my thoughts are very confusing.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Positive Post Tuesday


On Sunday Pastor Pete spoke of "Friendship brings value to Life" (sermon video) and I've been thinking about it a lot. In my post the other day I mentioned how after Church I'd gone and met my friend Joseph and we palled around together for the afternoon.

Joseph is a friend I met at a job we both had 5 years ago and as each year passes our friendship is strengthened. I value Joseph.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

On Top Of The World

Remember me saying I want my picture taken here at the top of Half Dome in Yosemite? And I said something about maybe not at the top of Half Dome specifically, but no doubt something.

Well I got my wish. Romy and I climbed "West Crack" on DAFF Dome and she took this picture of me at the top:
Here's one of us at the top of DAFF Dome with Fairview Dome directly behind us. Fairview is where DAFF gets its name to begin with: Directly Across From Fairview.

You'll have to excuse the helmet head.

Weekend Brief ...

Yay! What a great weekend this has been. Yesterday I got to go rock climbing outside on real rock with my good friend Hans and Sheila!

Sheila and I have only been out three times this entire year. We took a weekend road trip to Owens River Gorge back in May (with Danny, Dave and David), then took a day trip to Indian Springs and then another weekend trip to Clark Canyon at the end of June.

The Clark Canyon trip was with our friend Joseph (who doesn't climb anymore because his knee hates life) but he goes for the fun of our company. My Alison and her friend Geoff joined us on that trip and we had a great time. But we haven't been out since then if you can believe that. (if you know me and my climbing, you'd know what a tragedy this is for me).

I've been so busy this summer going here there and everywhere other than climbing and have been looking forward to another trip to the Gorge with Sheila (and Joseph this time, Danny and Dave can't make it). Then climbing with Romy got me very excited about climbing again and I couldn't stand waiting for that next trip. So when on Thursday at the gym Hans suggested we go climb I leapt at the chance, and Sheila came too. YAY!

Climbing yesterday was with Hans, a friend that I haven't climbed with in over a year. It was really nice to catch up with him. After climbing, Hans had Mark and I over for dinner.

And then there has been today ... (in bullets?)
  • Romy sent a link to pictures from our Tuolumne trip.
  • Attended the 11am service of church and really enjoyed the sermon. After the service I went back to the "newcomers welcome" and met the associate pastor who runs a "Women of Excellence" bible study group out in my neighborhood. I am quite excited to start building my own community in faith.
  • Then I went and met my friend Joseph. When he opened his door I announced "I need food, want to go with me?" So off we went for some delicious authentic mexican tacos at Beto's
  • Off to Sierra Trading Post to buy something light yet warm for climbing in ...
  • Off to REI to get a flashing red light for the back of my bike so I can ride to work without getting run off the road (at least they'll see me before they hit me right?)
  • And now home to do some final organizing for NEXT WEEKEND where Joseph, Sheila and I will be heading back to the Gorge. YAY.

Monday, October 13, 2008

Life Carries On

Title to the song is I Grieve but Life Carries On should be a sub-title.

It was only one hour ago
It was all so different then
There's nothing yet has really sunk in
Looks like it always did
This flesh and bone
Is just the way that you were tied in
But there's no one home
I grieve...
for you
You leave...
So hard to move on
Still loving what's gone
They say life carries on...
Carries on and on and on...
And on
The news that truly shocks
is the empty, empty page
While the final rattle rocks
Its empty, empty cage...
And I can't handle this
I grieve...
For you
You leave...
Let it out and move on
Missing what's gone
They say life carries on...
They say life carries on and on...
And on
Life carries on in the people I meet
In every one that's out on the street
In all the dogs and cats
In the flies and rats
the rot and the rust
In the ashes and the dust
Life carries on and on and on...
And on
Life carries on and on and on...
Life carries on and on and on...
And on
Life carries on and on and on...
Just the car that we ride in
The home we reside in
The face that we hide in
The way we are tied in
And life carries on and on and on...
And on
Life carries on and on and on...
Did I dream this belief
Or did I believe this dream
Now I can find relief
I grieve...

Commenting On Fear

Brody Harper posted What's Your Fear and asked "So what’s yours? What’s one of your worst fears?" and my comment reply ended up far too long for a comment so I cut/paste it here and made it a post.

I've was widowed at age 35, and if I let the fear run away with me, I can break down in sobs worrying that it will happen again. I don't want to live through that grief again. But I pretty much know I will have too. On that note I would rather go first, and yet to go first means leaving Mark, and I honestly don't know how he would cope.

I had my kids to get me through the first time. My mantra was if I don't take care of myself, who will take care of my kids? My Alison was 8.5 years, and Josh was almost 13. That first year was most definitely the hardest year of my life. But, by the Grace of God, we made it

Even though I was not Christian at the time, I was very much aware that I was carried through that year by the Grace of God. God carried me. I think of that poem "Footprints In The Sand," and I know God carried me because so many people who loved me prayed on my behalf.

And knowing that, I'd rather Mark go first. I have God to carry me, Mark would be alone :-( and I really don't know how he would cope. He would have people who love him praying for him, and God would carry him, but I fear he wouldn't recognize or acknowledge that. He'd reject it. And he'd die. And we wouldn't be together.

I don't worry so much about my kids - well, that's only a partial truth. But they're adults (almost, Alison is 17) now. Kids are supposed to lose their parents first. Wow, losing my kids is another fear ... Boy. Let's stop this before I get further carried away!

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Abundance Of Thanks

Today we are going to my Canadian girlfriends home for Thanksgiving. My initial question is still unanswered (because I'm an egotistical ignorant American?) about what do the Canadians give thanks?
But, I've decided that it really doesn't matter. I am taking this day, as all days should be, to give Thanks for all of the ABUNDANCE we have in our lives.
  • I have Mark for my husband, who as my Alison reminded me recently loves me like no one else

  • I have two beautiful children, Josh and Alison, both in their appearance and character

  • I have both of my parents alive today

  • I have Lois, my mother-in-law from my first marriage

  • I have my in-laws, Ian and Brucie, from this marriage too, for which I am truly grateful.

  • I have three beautiful daughters, Amber, Natalya and Alyssa, through Mark

  • Albeit cluttered, dusty and not terribly clean, I have a warm house to shelter me from the coming cold weather

  • I work for an incredible boss

  • I have enough money to pay all my bills, and stash some away for vacations

  • I have the cool car in the family

  • And the biggest, saved for last because it's greatest:
  • I have GOD
There is so much more I could add, but this is my foundation.

I am making some vegan delightful Thanksgiving foods for Alison, because Sheila will have an over abundance of food for the rest of us.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Climbing With Romy

Ah..... I can't even begin to tell all about my trip. It was truly amazing. My thanks to AlpineDave for having great pictures of West Crack on DAFF Dome in Toulomne Meadows - Yosemite National Park.

Romy took a bunch of pictures but I'll have to wait for her to get back to Boston to get them from her. Then I'll post them.

There's one of me standing next to her at this belay just below the slot that spat me out like sour milk ... no pictures of that one since Romy was far above on belay.

We have pictures of us at the top of the route too, and she took some of me on the free rappel down ... completely awesome. Can't wait to post the pictures!

Saturday, October 4, 2008


I want my picture taken here, at the top of Half Dome, Yosemite National Park:

These boys have grown a lot in the past 2 years since this picture was taken - but they've been to and climbed a route called Snake Dike on Half Dome two years before I have! I don't know that I'll actually climb Half Dome - but I know I'll climb something in Yosemite!

I'm heading out today with my girlfriend Romy for a 3 night trip to Yosemite for some rock climbing. Romy's coming in from Boston for a friends wedding the following weekend, and she's invited me to join her climbing. (and she just called me while I've been composing this post!) I am so excited I can't stand it! Think of me, and send warm thoughts cause it's gonna be cold!

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Paying Attention (still)

Holy Cow. My morning devotional talked about the bible being the "Living Word" because certain scriptures come to life and take root within in you. You can hear what nobody else hears ... This morning, like most mornings I prayed and asked God to open my eyes to his Word in my day. But Holy Cow - I got smacked upside the head with this today.

In reading my blogs I've come across two that really were jaw dropping. After reading the first, I marked it to save, so I could come back later and think more on it. And then I came across the second one and just had to write about it now. What I read meant something to me that would mean nothing to someone else.
The first was My Utmost for His Highest ... The place for humiliation.. In this post the bit that jumped out at me was about being up on the mountain top.
"We see His glory on the mountain, but we never live for His glory there."
I had thought about this on my drive to work (read the blog at work, sorry Stoney)how when I was hiking in the mountains, how close to God I felt, and how I want that on a daily basis. The post went on
Look back at your own experience and you will find that until you learned who Jesus really was, you were a skillful skeptic about His power. When you were on the mountaintop you could believe anything, but what about when you were faced with the facts of the valley?
You were a skilled skeptic about His power. Yes I was, and now I am in the valley of humiliation.

Then I went and read Been Thinking About ... Are they afraid of us? and was again smacked in the head.This particular post hits home regarding Revelations ... precisely where I am on my journey. Revelations is what pushed me away from God so many years ago.
Is it possible that they just hear frightening noise if they don’t also see credible indications of the love of God? Can we fault them for assuming the worst? Can we blame them for thinking that the noise is part of a scare-tactic to get their name, their money, or even their lives?
Ah, thank you God for opening my eyes, allowing me to see.

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

My Alison

Positive Post Tuesday
I have the coolest daughter in all of the world. My Alison is 17 years old and is finding her way in this world. Her beauty continues to grow and glow (although I do have to say I don't like that thing in her nose)
My Alison
She has struggled and I'd be a liar if I tried to tell anyone that the past 3 years have been easy. Alison has gone from despising me, to finally liking me again. And through all this, I've loved my Alison.

She has been my Alison her entire life. Most people refer to their children by their first name, but I've almost always referred to her as my Alison. It started when she was born. I would talk to my Aunt Dottie and Uncle George about her, and as they have an Alison of their own, I added the my in front of Alison to differentiate mine from theirs. But it stuck. She's always been my Alison. And from there, her older brother became my Josh.

Some people refer generically to their kids as 'the kids' and I've always referred to mine as my kids. I'm proud of my kids. Same thing. But it started with my Alison.

Sunday, September 28, 2008

The Alma D

This is what I did today:
The Alma D on Lake Tahoe
Mark paddled me around on Lake Tahoe in the Alma D, which is the courting canoe he had made just for me. And he named it in honor of my Aunt Dottie, who's name was Alma Dorothy.

According to Babynames.com
The meaning of the name Alma is Nourishing
The origin of the name Alma is Latin
Notes:Also Spanish for soul

Back in the dark ages when I hosted online chats, I used the name Alma, in honor of my Aunt who will always nourish my soul.

So anyway, there is my day. Oh, and here's the Alma D on our back lawn:
The Alma D on Lake Tahoe

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Donating Blood

I am at the United Blood Center in Reno today donating platelets. I like to come every two weeks (plaetlets replenish themselves in 24 hours) but I haven't been here since June. :-( I sit here from 90 minutes to 2 hours. That's what it takes to draw, spin the platelets out and return the rest of my blood. It takes the longest if my count was high enough to give a double unit. Today will only be a single.

My reason for sitting here so long is that my platelets are given to people who are undergoing chemotherapy. My platelets help them feel better. Someone else gave their time and platelets for my Aunt Dottie. My time means nothing when I know I've helped improve the quality of someone elses day, particularly when they may not have much quality in their life.

Today the draw machine was not liking me so they had quit early - only 45 min today.

Thursday, September 25, 2008


One of my favorite quotes: