Monday, December 29, 2008

Small Steps

I started physical therapy again today. My orthopedic surgeon wants me to try that for a month and then check in with him to determine if I'm going to need surgery. I'm still taking my meds (I'm up to half a dose, from 1/3, seem to be tolerating it well) and today I started on ashwagandha, an herbal supplement to help my adrenal glands, anxiety and mood. I was a bit scared to take it, as I had tried it a few months ago and had a MASSIVE anxiety attack later on, but since my anxiety seems to be better I figured I'd try it again.
No problems to report!!

Now the next hurdle I have to get over is the habit I got into of falling asleep at 1 or 2 in the morning, sleeping til 11:30 and doing the whole thing again the next day. 
I was rx'd sleeping pills but I haven't picked them up at the pharmacy yet, not sure if I want to go down that road. 
I tried setting my alarm for 10am or so some days, but I just turned it off and tried to go back to sleep. 
If I'm going to go back to work, even part time, I have to be able to get up in the morning and function like a normal human being. 
So that is the next step I have to take..keep up with my meds and start getting up earlier.

I'll keep you posted with my progress...

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

I'm A Cliche

Or rather, I will be tomorrow...on christmas day! 

I'm going to be one of those people eating at a chinese restaurant!

I don't "do" christmas, there are no lights on my house, no tree, no presents. I will be spending the earlier part of the day with a friend at his stable (he gave all his help the day off so I will keep him company) and then go out to eat with the husband. Later on that night I will be watching ESPN as usual...and turning my thoughts to the New Year.

Hopefully 2009 will be better for us (and you too). 

However you choose to spend the holiday: I hope it is everything you want it to be.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Random Thoughts

I went to my doctor today for a follow up visit. He said I was looking better than when he saw me last time, and told me I would need a few more months (!) on my meds to really be back to my old happy self. 
He also told me that it was normal for me to be impatient to get better, since I am having a good day here & there, when the bad days come I get very sad & think I will never be ok. He told me it's normal to think like that and to have positive thoughts. I am working on those.

I've been feeling a bit....not jealous, but a little envious lately. I know that is not a good thing to feel, but sometimes I can't help it. I notice my friend's blogs and they are better than mine. My horses are not racing well, and other horses are. Lots of people have money and I don't. Hell, people have great lives and aren't depressed! That's one thing I DO have..depression. And those envious thoughts. I will have to work on banishing them too.

My last random thought is that everyone in NJ is going to be thrown into a tizzy tomorrow, due to the snow that is supposed to be coming. I'm not going to worry, if there is snow then I will try to enjoy it. One thing that I am enjoying is the Xmas lights on display throughout my town, it gives a festive air about it. I must be getting better because last week the lights didn't do a THING for me. 

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Way Too Many Commercials

Ahh, the holiday season is upon us in full swing. Stores everywhere are exhorting consumers to BUY, BUY, BUY so their loved ones can feel truly loved this year. 
There are a million car commercials on tv, each one more intrusive and annoying than the next.
Jewelry stores are telling us that this holiday would not be complete unless the Mr drops beaucoup bucks on a sparkly little thing for the Mrs.

Shop till you drop!!

I am unfazed by all this blatant commercialism. I am a pagan, I don't celebrate Christmas, nor do I go around buying a million gifts. I celebrate the Winter Solstice, which gives thanks to "another year around the sun" and the beginning of a new year. I don't send out cards either. 
I would be putting up a tree, or lights on my house, if I had a few extra dollars to spend on the conifer or the extra electricity, but right now I don't. So Solstice will have to be celebrated in my heart this year. 

My hopes for 2009 are simple: a return to good health, continued close friendships and hopefully a little more money. 

As the season bustles all around you, take the time to stop and think: what really means the most to you?

Happy holidays to all.

Monday, December 8, 2008

A Kindness

My post today is a simple and quick one. I want to share how grateful I am to a friend of mine. He cared enough about me and my issues, that he took time out of his busy day to look up and email to me some links that would help me with financial assistance. 
I didn't ask for help, he just read my posts and thought of what I was going through. His kindness is extremely touching. I fully intend to "pay it forward" to another person who may be having a bad day.
Even though I am sad most of the time, this simple act of kindness cheered me up. Words can't express how I feel, knowing I have friends that care about me.
You are very special, J.
Thank you!!!

I am in the process of filling out the myriad of forms..I'll let you know the result as soon as I can.

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Update on Surgery

After finally speaking to the doctor's office yesterday about my surgery (waiting for the dr to finish his chart, good thing I wasn't dying in pain or the like) it is being put on hold. My pain is mostly gone due to one of the pills I'm taking and the surgeon wants me to go to more physical therapy for a month and then go back to him for a follow up. 
I'm happy that I'm not needing the surgery right now, I wasn't sure how I was going to handle it anxiety wise. However, I still can't work because I'm still anxious! I'm taking both my meds again, today was a kinda crappy day, got up with the jitters, etc etc. 
My disability benefits ran out today also, so now I have money worries along with my health issues. If I can just have good days I will go back to work, part time to start I can try to pay my bills and keep myself occupied. 
It's just very disheartening when I try to have a good day and my anxiety prevents me from doing so. 
When will this all end?

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

It's Baaaack!

Monday was a good day for me too, not too much vibrating and jittery-ness. Today, however, is a different story. I woke up at 10 with that old familiar fluttering in my chest. I laid in bed til 11, hoping it would miraculously go away. (Why do I DO that? I lie in bed trying to go back to sleep, thinking that it will be different when I wake up and I: a)never get back to sleep and b)get out of bed feeling the same. You would think I would try a new tactic by now).
I had to take my morning dose of my pill..I wanted to try to get through the day without it, but I had a doctor appointment today & didn't want the anxiety to get out of control. I was vaguely uneasy all throughout the day, and now it's 6:20 and I think I might be calming down. I'm going to dinner with a friend of mine in a little bit, and I'm happy to report that my appetite has come back. 
I lost about 10 pounds a few months ago when all this started in again..I'm a person that avoids food if I'm stressed or sad. Most of you eat when you get nervous or angry..not me. I'm just the opposite. Lately though, I have been enjoying my food again, hopefully I gained back those pounds.
The lesson I'm going to take from this is that: I had a few good days, I'm starting to eat maybe the meds are starting to work. I just need more time.
Hopefully tomorrow will be another good day.

Sunday, November 30, 2008

In Praise of SportsCenter

As most of you know by now, I'm not working due to health issues. Therefore most of my evenings are spent in front of the TV, on the couch. 
I've watched ESPN for a few years now, as Around The Horn and PTI are 2 of my favorite shows. But since my sleep/wake cycle is majorly screwed up, I've begun watching SportsCenter at all hours of the night. Usually my nighttime viewing consists of whatever college football game is on, then I tune in to SportsCenter. It's on all night! You can't beat it!
I would be so much more miserable if it weren't for football and ESPN. 

Today I decided to stop taking one of my meds to see how I felt. This one pill leaves me feeling flat and unemotional. I really have no way of knowing if I'm getting better or not. Today I woke up and figured if I was too anxious later on, I would take that pill. I'm happy to report that I didn't need it, and it's now almost 5:30 pm.
I'm still undecided if I should take my evening dose or not...but as I lie on the couch tonight and watch Sunday Night Football I will be awake and optimistic. And there's always my old friend, SportsCenter, to get me through the late hours.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

To Cut or Not To Cut

My orthopedic surgeon said I was a candidate for surgery...I'm in the process of waiting for an appointment for pre-surgery tests. However, I've been taking a medication that also helps pain. Hence, I no longer have back pain! That is a good thing, but I'm not sure if I should be going for that surgery now. If I stop taking these meds will the pain come back? I'm not ready to quit the meds just may be at least 6-8 months until I don't need them any more. Then what will happen??
I really don't want to be recovering from surgery during the coldest part of the year either. Part of the recovery is walking frequently, not bending or twisting, or sitting. So how am I supposed to put my socks on, and all the layers of clothing so I stay warm outside? Have my mom come over and dress me? 
The only thing I want for Xmas is for my anxiety to go away, and for me to be able to work again, even if it's only part time. My back no longer seems to be an issue.

Auugggghhh!!! I'm SO confused!

Wednesday, November 5, 2008


Well, Barack got elected. He won on the platform of CHANGE. 
I, for one, deeply desire change. I want the economy to get better. I want my back to stop hurting. I want to be happy again. I want to go back to work.
My life truly needs change, and for the better!
I know Barack Obama cannot give me these things I desire...but I will not stop hoping for them to take place.
I go to see an orthopedic surgeon this Monday, hopefully that will show me a light at the end of that tunnel.
I'm one week into my anti depressants, I'm on 1/3 dose since the side effects are killing me. I know they take a few weeks to work but it would be nice to catch a glimpse of the old me, the happy me, the content Magnolia. 
Change cannot come soon enough.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Severe Weather

Did you ever notice that weather makes headlines just by existing? No matter what is going on in the world; war, kidnappings, economic downturns, sports...all of it can be wiped out by a massive thunderstorm, high winds, or... snow in October.
I realize that an October snowstorm is unusual in itself, but it's interesting to wonder what kind of headlines the TV and print news would be blaring if there was no snow yesterday. People everywhere were making comments and sighing, as if this was the portent of the worst winter ever.
It's a weather ANOMALY! Get over it!! We are here in New Jersey, where there are 4 distinct seasons. All the weather gets their share: heat, cold, rain, wind, snow, and nice weather too.  
There is still other news out there, like the upcoming election (perhaps we have election fatigue and the weather provided a respite). There is other news like the World Series (oops, game 5 was suspended due to rain. That in itself was a headline, it's never happened before. Which makes me wonder why football can be played in the rain but baseball can't. Aren't they both dangerous in less than optimum conditions? But I digress).
Certainly there can be other news found besides severe weather. But we are a nation of weather watchers, students of the elements if you will. We stay glued to the TV whenever there is something happening in the atmosphere, myself included. That's not really a bad thing. Without weather what would small talk consist of? 
In any case, the snow is over with, for now. Things will get back to normal and the real news will come to the forefront again. It's all just a big cycle.....

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Writer's Block and Pain

Ok, I know my web site has turned into a cobweb site..I haven't been posting in a while. I've been having some personal issues and I'm suffering from writer's block as well.
I have severe chronic back pain, and the last few weeks have been terrible for me. Remember my last post? I exacerbated my herniated discs and I've been in la la land ever since. I did go for my epidural Monday, and there are a few hours in the day where I don't have pain..but then unfortunately those hours get filled up with depression and anxiety. 
Yesterday was a very bad day for me. I tried to keep myself busy but there was that pervasive humming and sense of unease inside me, that life was worthless, why bother doing anything, all I wanted to do was sleep, etc. 
I asked my husband to come with me to the mall at 7 pm last night just to get me out of the house and stimulate my mind! I have absolutely no money to buy stuff, I just wanted a change of scenery.
When we got to the mall everyone was laughing, and happy, all the teenagers were there for friday night date night..and there I was. I felt isolated, alone, nervous, and unhappy. 
I felt a bit of panic coming over me, but I told myself that I was "safe", I wasn't going crazy, I was in control, all that good stuff.
After about 20 minutes of walking around (and realizing how out of touch with the world I am, considering all the new fashions, games, electronics etc) I decided I had had enough. We came home and I snuggled into my favorite spot on the sofa and watched TV.
Today is a better day for me. I'm going to see my mom, always an uplifting experience. I'm also going to make sure I take all my new meds that my holistic MD gave me (vitamins B & D, GABA, adrenal support capsules, fish oil capsules) and try to keep a positive attitude. I can't go back to work but I'm going to see if a friend of mine can use a pair of hands for a couple hours a day. I won't get paid but at least I will have a purpose in life, and I won't be faced with the same old boring thing every day.

I truly hope this 2nd epidural works, because the next step is surgery. I would gladly take the surgery if I knew it would be the end of my back issues and PAIN once and for all.

I'm a little disappointed in this post, as I take my writing very seriously and want to make every post witty and readable. This just had to be said, however, and you can't sugarcoat pain and depression.
Hopefully my writer's block will lift and I will be my wonderful self again soon.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

A Tale Of Woe, otherwise known as Hoisted On My Own Petard

I went back down to Atlantic City earlier this week, on Monday night, to attend a veterinary conference that I go to every year. I stayed at a different hotel, one right across the street from the Convention Hall. 
I was planning to stay there until Thursday evening, and had 3 days of lectures all planned out. 
Since I was staying for 3 days, I made sure I packed everything in my house that wasn't nailed down or in the washing machine. In ONE BAG. 
As I pulled up to the hotel I realized that $17.00 for valet parking was beyond my budget, so I followed the signs for "self park"....past the hotel, underneath the convention center, about a 1/4 mile away. After I had taken my ticket and found a spot, I came to the understanding that I would have to bring my own luggage with me to check in. This is where all the problems started. I have a bad back (bad is an understatement. I have herniated discs, gone thru epidurals and want to get surgery.) and really shouldn't be carrying a bag that weighs as much as me through a parking lot. I shouldn't even be lifting it out of my car. 
I was not using my brain at the time, however, so I carried it. (My bag, not my brain.) When I arrived at the front desk, out of breath and cursing my overpacking ability, I told them I would need a bellboy to take it upstairs for me. 
Things were fine so far. I checked in, unpacked, walked to McDonald's for a nutritious dinner, and went to sleep.
The next morning when I woke up, I showered and went to the first lecture. Somewhere between leaving my room and sitting down in the chair, my back went out. I experienced such major pain in my back, up & down my leg, and in my foot that I saw stars. There was no way I could sit through a lecture. 
Did I mention before that I packed everything except the kitchen sink? Well, I did. Except along with the sink that I left home, my PAIN PILLS were home too. I had to have my poor husband drive down to A.C. with the bottle. 
Unfortunately the damage was done..nothing would help me. I woke up Wednesday morning and checked out. This time I was smart. I had them wheel me downstairs in the hotel wheelchair and asked the bell captain to please get my car for me. I was unable to walk even a few steps, that's how much pain I was in. 
They were all very nice at the hotel, that's for sure. The bell captain even brought me a juice to drink as I waited for my car.
The most painful part of all this, besides my newly re-inflamed that I packed all these clothes to wear and I never got to wear them! I effectively ruined my own vacation, wasted my own money, and caused my pain to flare up again. 
This makes me want to never pack a bag for a trip again. 
Now I'm popping Percocets like M&M's, waiting until Monday and my next epidural. 
I hope I can deal with the pain until then.

Monday, October 13, 2008


I don't know if it's a result of me getting older or what, but I've been feeling quite nostalgic lately. I find myself reminiscing about when I was younger and remembering what a wonderful time I had. The funny part is, I don't have the greatest long term memory, so I often hear stories from people who knew me back in the day, and the stories they tell me are like brand new. I can't believe I'm unable to remember all that!
The feeling I have is sort of tempered with a little pain, because those days are gone and never ever coming back. How are we supposed to bring back days before cell phones, CD's and multi tasking? 
Remember when we rode our bikes and didn't wear helmets? Or you called your friend and if no one was home, the phone just rang? Remember shopping on Broadway (or Main Street) for khaki pants and wallabees? (those are shoes, usually brown, with gummy soles- for the uninitiated)
I used to go to the corner store, buy candy, maybe a Fresca, and go "call on" my friends. Ring the bell, ask if they want to come out, hang out until dark, go home. There were no playdates scheduled and monitored by mom (I totally hate playdates! Send your kid outside, he will hang out with kids who live on the block with him, end of story).I remember walking to bus for me. AND I walked alone!! There was no mass hysteria about kids having a moment alone for killers or child molesters to snatch them up.
Remember gym class? We would actually RUN and PLAY outside! All year round there were different sports to learn and be involved in. Funny, but I really can't recall too many FAT kids in my class..that was because everyone had to exercise daily. 
I started watching that new show "Life On Mars" the other day, where the cop goes back to 1973...the best part is seeing all the retro stuff pop up. I can't say I'm following the plot too closely, as I'm distracted looking for the atmosphere. 
The 70's and 80's were a wonderful, crazy, unique time. If anyone has special memories please feel free to note them in your comments..I would love it!

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

A Mountain of Laundry

I returned today from a 2 day trip to Atlantic City. We got the rooms comped, so there was no reason not to get away for a few days. Besides, I always like to pretend that I'm filthy rich when I go's not hard..everyone is always so nice and you get pampered in all sorts of ways. I did treat myself to a massage at the Red Door Spa, but other than that; and the buffet, always a gastronomic orgy, there was not a lot of pampering on this trip. When I returned home and started to unpack, there was such a mountain of dirty clothes that I wondered how many people actually went on this trip. There were only 3 small bags packed but it seemed like the dirty clothes went on forever. I spent the whole day doing laundry and putting all the other stuff away. 

You know it's always great to go on a trip but when you get back home and have to spend an entire day unpacking, washing and putting stuff away (the hairspray! the magazines! combs, brushes, socks that were never worn!) it makes you want another vacation to escape the dreary chores that await you. 
But of course, that would set off another round of dirty laundry and unpacking.

The best part? I get to do it again next week. I have a convention to go to in...that's right, you guessed it...ATLANTIC CITY.

I will be going for 4 days, so there will be plenty o' mess to clean up when I get home. Sigh.

Nothing like a vacation to relax you.

Saturday, October 4, 2008

The Invisible Yard Sale

What if you gave a yard sale and nobody came? 

Does that mean your sale didn't exist?

Every October my town holds a giant yard sale. It's written up in the town newsletter and signs are put all over to alert both the denizens and passers-thru that yes, there will be junk, and a LOT of it. Ambitious sellers and buyers start early (8am) and the sale usually goes on til about 3 pm or so, depending on the weather.

Today it was partly sunny, about 59 degrees. So.

I had clothes to sell. A few weeks ago I cleaned out my closets in a fit of boredom, and had the brilliant idea to haul it out during this yard sale and try to make a few bucks. I was going to put it all in the poor box, but I figured I could always do that after the sale was over.

At 9 am I hung all the pants and sweaters and jackets and suits and shirts and skirts up for easy customer viewing. Actually it was great hangers fit nicely on the gutters above my garage.  Easy to see from the street but not too high in case you wanted to inspect the item more closely.
I do not live on the main road, but plenty of people were out and about, driving down my street in search of a parking spot, and there were plenty of walking and biking potential customers.

I put a sign out:      $3.00 suits pants shirts sweaters                              

I'd stop and check out clothes for $3, wouldn't you? I had 29 items total, all clean and hanging up there with so much promise. I had singles and change in my pocket, ready for those consumers with $5 and $10 bills. I had a mug of steaming hot tea to warm my little hands as I stood on my porch awaiting the masses. 
I had a long afternoon in front of me.
 When 12 noon came and went with not even a single person stopping to look at my wares, I went inside and broke out the newspaper. I could always see if anyone came up the driveway, and then go out to help them.
When the clock struck 1 I turned on the tv to watch the football game, with the sound on low.  I could always hear customers through the front door, and then go out to help them.
There was plenty of traffic up and down the block, and numerous cars turning around right in front of my house, but no one stopped to shop. 
I did see a woman turn her head as the car drove by slowly, so I know she got a glimpse of my garments. (That sounds kinda perverted, huh?) That was the theme: drive by slowly, look at the clothes, make a U-turn, then drive back up the block. 
I really didn't think my clothes were all that boring. Apparently they held no promise for anyone, as I could see people milling about on Main Street, but no one came down past my house to mill.  
At 2 pm I went outside, took down all the hanging textile chads and tossed them into the trunk of my car. I'm sure the recipients of the poor box contents will appreciate them.
Thus released from my yard sale duties, and a lesson learned (location, location, location), I settled in for a Saturday afternoon of college football games. 

I will support yard sales by buying, not selling, in the future. 


Tuesday, September 30, 2008


The dictionary defines minutiae as "precise details, small or trifling matters". 

I was reading the newspaper last week and came upon an article about blogs -- "Mommy" blogs, actually. The author gave us a list of blogs and told us which were good and which ones weren't so hot. The paper was separating the wheat from the chaff for us,  so to speak.
The author's main beef with these blogs was that the poor ones contained too much minutiae. It seems that no one cares if Johnny took his first step today or that Mommy was waiting for the cable man to come. Cleaning up juice spills or loads of dirty laundry is not interesting enough for us blog devotees. 
However, the article went on to name one of the better blogs, and cited a post from it (her son had found a dead squirrel in the yard and wanted to show it to his mom), all the while exclaiming that stories like these separate THIS blog from the rest. Another blog author was interviewed, and he proclaimed that "if she's posting something, it's worth reading...she never tells you what is on sale at Target or silly things like that..."

Apparently minutiae is only acceptable if you couch it in scintillating prose. 

My point here is this: Our whole lives are filled with tiny details, some boring, some not. It's how you describe them that matters. Some bloggers are able to transcend the daily grind and turn it into a wonderful story. That is called excellent writing and it's what every decent writer longs for. That is also where writer's block stems from; when you want to tell a story and it just won't come out right. 
I strive to do my best writing all the time but some stories flow better than others. (This one is looking pretty pathetic in my eyes right now, actually).

What I wanted to to is stick up for all those bloggers who blog about mundane things. After all, do we blog for ourselves, just to get it out, or do we blog for the masses? 
Sure, I'd love to have lots of people hanging on my every post. But the truth is, there's just so many blogs and so little time. Everyone is busy with their own minutiae that they have no time to search and read a new blog. There ARE just so many hours in the day, you know~

So today I'm thinking about my audience and wishing it was bigger. I'm also going to strive more to make the commonplace seem more exciting. 
I'm sure that would benefit all of us....

Thursday, September 25, 2008

I love my Sirius radio!!

America is a great country. No other country gives its inhabitants so many choices. Think about it--there is an ENTIRE AISLE at ShopRite devoted to breakfast cereal. And soda. Think of how many pizza parlours and fast food restaurants are within your reach. (I privately think that this only adds to the many reasons why America's youth can't concentrate: too many choices.) 
One thing that gives me many choices is my Sirius radio in my car. I used to madly stab the buttons on my old car radio, obsessively avoiding commercials and songs by hated artists. It's a wonder I didn't break a finger, driving and poking like I was insane. 
Now all that is behind me. I have over 100 channels, no commercials and the unwritten guarantee that I will find something, anything to listen to as I stab the tiny little remote control that comes with the radio. There is still stabbing, yes, but now I'm on a different kind of a quest: The Quest For The Perfect Song.  There are so many channels that I cannot choose which one I want to hear at any given moment. Should I listen to blues? jazz? comedy? 70's? 80's? reggae? ambient? (you know what ambient's that plinking atonal stuff you hear when you go to the spa. Never been to a spa? Well, go then, and listen to the music!)
Today my Spanning Of The Musical Globe served me up this gift: "Good Morning Starshine" by Oliver. I remember hearing this on AM radio, oh, about 1969. It's from the musical "Hair". Upon hearing it again today, I realized that it had some seriously lame lyrics. Sabba sibby sabba? Nooby abba nabba? 

Early morning singin' song!!!!

For all 12 of us who know how the song goes, the previous lines will have you nodding your head and humming. For the rest of you, go check out iTunes.

You have to love all those channels. Every day I hear a song that I haven't heard in a while, and some really awesome new stuff too. How did we ever get along listening to terrestrial radio? One of the best parts about Sirius is that you get the name of the song & and artist, so if you want to download it later, you know exactly what you are searching for. The only beef I have is that I think every song should have the year on it as well. The only stations that give us the year are the "number" stations, 60's, 70's, etc. 
And what a blessing to be avoiding commercials entirely! I don't know about you, but I never, ever, purchased something because I heard about it on the radio. Gone are all the lousy jingles, endless interchangeable car commercials and plugs for restaurants.
 I am free to make my own choices about where to shop and what to drive...and you better believe there are PLENTY.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Healthy Living

I went to a holistic MD yesterday. I've been having some health issues and basically, I'm scared to just dump a whole bunch of prescription drugs into my system and hope that solves the problem. I found this doctor by mistake, I was Googling one thing and up she popped. Serendipitous, I'd say~
So she met with me for an hour and she took copious notes, which made me feel better. I came away with 2 natural supplements, a prescription for numerous blood tests and, more importantly, HOPE that I will get better soon. The most ominous thing she said to me was "we will discuss diet changes on our next appointment." 
Diet change??? I thought I ate pretty well, but for some reason she had an issue with my oldest and most relaxing snack: a donut eaten daily at 10 am. I've been eating 10 am donuts (usually Dunkin Donuts, sometimes WaWa, but always chocolate glazed. NOT chocolate covered! There is a difference, you know) for most of my life. I remember being in grammar school and taking a trip to Teterboro Airport every Sunday with my Dad. I would take my flying lesson (subject for a whole other blog entry) and afterwards we would go down the street to Dunkin Donuts and have soup and a donut. I loved those Sunday mornings with my Dad. But I digress.

Back to the diet change. I figured I would be proactive and start a food diary, so when I go back to her I can be armed with the knowledge that I eat well. Let me tell you, when you are documenting every bit of food consumed, you think twice about a quick snack!! I haven't even THOUGHT about Oreos today (not counting right now...mmm...they would be sooo nice with some I digressing again? Nuts).
I suppose eating healthier is a small price to pay for getting my health back. I just hope I'm not going to turn into one of those people that have to analyze each & every bit of food that passes their lips. 
Let's check out my chocolate glazed friend!

This is the information I got from the DD web site:
Chocolate Glazed Cake Donut
Nutrition Facts
 Serving Size1 donut
 Calories from Fat170
 % Daily Value, Calories: 2,000
 Total Fat19g 29%
    Saturated Fat9g 45%
    Trans Fat0g  
 Cholesterol0mg 0%
 Sodium360mg 15%
 Total Carbohydrates39g 13%
    Dietary Fiber2g 9%
 Vitamin A0%
 Vitamin C0%

Hey! There's IRON in there. Cool. Good thing I've been eating those, women need extra iron.

Somehow I don't think that is going to be a good argument to keep this in my daily allotment of food. Sigh.

More on this when I return from my doctor's appointment.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Disappointing mentor..

The following is an OLD post that I wrote in 2006, on a blog that I'm no longer posting to. (and yes Mom, I know you shouldn't end a sentence with a preposition but I move on~)

This person is obviously no longer my mentor, and I'm happy to report that I have a new worthy of admiration, one who doesn't mind to teach me and answer my questions. I'm much happier with life now, and feel grateful that circumstances have brought us together. 

So today's thing to think about is: have you ever looked up to someone and were terribly disappointed? Did you question your own judgement? Do you even HAVE a mentor or a hero?

Comments are always welcomed--

Here you go:

I must be pretty naive..but I always thought that a role model was someone to look up to and admire. You know, maybe a teacher in high school, or a mentor at your job. I had mentors in my younger days, but for a long while I just went about my life hero-less, as it were. Then along came someone who was smart, organized and worthy ( or so I thought) of admiration, even emulation!

Recently I had come to discover that this person that I viewed as a "hero" turned out to be a serious disappointment. Actions transpired that made me realize that this person is not only ordinary, but truly unworthy of praise and adoration. This comes not without a feelings were crushed and my world was rocked! I never realized how much a rude awakening could hurt! I question my own judgement in putting this person on a pedestal and wonder why people have to turn out to be jerks. These actions were morally wrong, possibly heinous, reprehensible, and certainly damaging. When I approached this person about what had just taken place I was told that it was none of my business (I was THERE as a witness so I think it was) and that I should make sure my own house was clean before I started judging others. This person is supposed to be "better" than me, I am an ordinary person leading a pedestrian life.  I don't deliberately set out to accomplish what this person did. This was premeditated. This person waited around for others to leave before settling down to the task. I tried to talk them out of it to no avail.

I was so upset, both at #1: this person being such a scum and opening my eyes to the questionable moral makeup and #2: the actions perpetrated by this person during the incident. I cried myself to sleep!

I tried speaking to this person about this, and as I mentioned before, I was told to keep out of it. I was not judging, I just thought I would give my opinion on it. I am grateful I was there, because I kept saying "enough is enough" with tears in my eyes and finally diverted this person away from continuing the hateful activities. If I were not there it would have continued on until this person was satisfied with his actions. From the looks of it, it would have been a long while.

Don't get me wrong here, no one was raped or given drugs, there wasn't a MURDER committed..but certainly if I gave details you would be horrified and question this person's whole gestalt. The actions were morally reprehensible and I am thoroughly disgusted.

And the worst part about it, is that I was the only witness to it all. If it ever came to light I would be the whistle blower, and there would be repercussions to me and my environment. That disgusts me as well.

I can only hope karma steps in and takes care of this person..given the personality and attitude this person has, perhaps it's already happening....but I'm just so heart sick right now....

Friday, September 19, 2008

My blog title and happiness

The title of my blog is Latin for  "I think (cogito), therefore (ergo), I am (sum). I always enjoyed Latin in school and it is, after all, the grandfather of many languages. The statement "I think..." was made popular by the French philosopher Rene Descartes, in the year 1644. It basically means that if you are wondering if you do indeed exist, the fact that you are THINKING about it means you do. A more in depth lesson about this and philosophy in general can be found at, of course,
So today's theme is: thinking. I'm still feeling a bit nostalgic (see yesterday's post). I seem to get that way every September, when the leaves start to change and the weather turns a bit chilly.  My birthday is in September also and that is the line of demarcation between summer and autumn for me. Summer is my favorite season, and it's always a bit depressing when both the leaves and the temperature start to drop. For me, the beginning of the year is now, not January 1st. Now is the time to shake off the frivolity of the summer and get back to the grind, whether it's work or school. 
What am I thinking about today? I'm thinking about the inevitability of season's end. I'm thinking about time marching on, inexorably. I'm thinking about my own mortality and just plain "endings" in general. Youth is wasted on the young (so they say) and I wish I had some time back. I know you are supposed to live life in the moment and appreciate things as you do them..but who REALLY does that? Who thinks during a trip to the beach, "This is going to be a great memory!" Who thinks during a birthday party, "I'm having a time to remember!"

NOBODY, that's who.

Maybe I will start thinking about good things more. Perhaps I will stop and take time to smell the roses as I wander through the garden of life. 

Or not.
 I will say, one "rose-smelling" thing that I do now, is write down every night some little thing I'm thankful for. I have a pocket sized monthly planner, with tiny squares for each day. At night, before bedtime, I fill in the box for that day with something good that I'm happy about. One day it was a good meal for dinner. Another day simply reads "friends". I have expressed happiness about my family, pets, job, house, meals and my health. 
Looking back at previous months is a great memory keeper..I can see how simple things were momentous in my life and deserving of a the time my beloved Greyhound was very ill and close to death. That day read "GiGi ate a few bites of food".
That was back in May, and I'm happy to report that GiGi is doing well. Each day that she is here is a gift to me, one that I appreciate by giving her lots of love and hugs and petting daily.

Perhaps we all need to realize that there are lots of gifts given to us...presents that should be acknowledged by love, and hugs. 
Today I am thinking about all the good things in my life, an early Thanksgiving, if you will. I'm going to realize that when I feel nostalgic--that's a good thing, because it means I have fun and happy memories of my life. 

What are you feeling nostalgic about today??

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Relatives and fondly remembering the past

I went to visit my Mom yesterday, a task that involves driving 45 minutes north to the town of my birth. I used to love going back there but now am saddened by its slow slide into decrepitude and proliferation of dollar stores and non-English speaking residents. I love my mom dearly and I am troubled to think of her alone in that city. She doesn't want to move out (I've offered for her to move in with me many times) and she gets along fine by herself. 
So, the visit.
We always have fun together, talking and shopping and reminiscing about times gone by (though I always come away with a faint sense of unease at how I remember places in the town, things that I did there and the unsettling thought that life can never be happy & carefree as it was when I was young, oh, about 7th grade all the way to senior year in high school. But I digress.). This visit was a little different in that my Mom asked me to stop by my Aunt's house to pick up something. A 10 minute visit turned into 3 hours! My cousin was there by chance and when we saw each other we hugged and I got all warm & fuzzy inside. This girl (woman, actually, another shock to me, because other people age--I don't!) who is 9 months older than me, consisted of such a huge part of my childhood memories that it's hard to think of being young without her popping up into my mental narrative. 
We were inseparable for years..I was always going over to her house and we would play board games, go to the playground across the street from her house, play manhunt, pretend for hours that we were actors and re-enact scenes from movies (Poseidon Adventure??? Who pretends THAT movie?!?! Jeez.). We would watch The Little Rascals, with me sighing loudly in the background ( I hated the Rascals. Now Abbott & Costello, well...THAT was real TV) or play records (Styx for her, Bee Gees for me) on her battered record player. We would go to the corner store (Viola's) and buy candy like Sixlets or Tootsie Rolls. We would pester her older brothers & sister and then there would be yelling. Dinner was always fun, with 6 or more people around the table. I was an only child, and was always fascinated that 4 kids and 2 adults could co exist in such a way. With only 1 bathroom!!Numerous people from the apartment complex where they lived were always ringing the bell or yelling in through the window. 
Compared to my quiet house with only Mom & Dad there, my Aunt's house was like a magical trip that I got to go on every week. 
I was so happy to see her and to talk with my Aunt, the time just flew by. Today I am filled with a sense of melancholy, because remembering happy times when I was younger invariably makes me sad. If I could be young, oh, let's say around 5th or 6th grade...and go all the way through high school again...that would be a great gift to me. I do not have the greatest memory for my childhood, and to hear my cousin tell stories about how she remembers that snack I used to eat (it was a precursor to fruit roll ups, and I didn't remember me eating it until she told me) or the time we had a "feast" at midnight (this I remember all too well) just fills me with bittersweet feeling inside. in turn, I got HER thinking about stuff (Pillsbury Food Sticks, and that flashlight thingy she had with different colored discs that you used to shine on the wall)that she didn't remember until I told her! I wish I had appreciated the fun times more...but I guess if I can think about them, and smile..perhaps I did.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Lowering The Drinking Age

I was just reading the Newark Star-Ledger this morning, and there is a bunch of blogs discussing the issue of lowering the drinking age. Of course there are a bunch of 18-year olds saying that if they can vote and be "sent off to be killed in Iraq" then they should be allowed to booze up without reprimand. I say this in response...when you join the armed forces and "sent off" you are trained thoroughly, and taught how to handle many situations. A soldier, no matter how old he is, handles basic responsibilities by trained instinct.  When underage kids decide to drink, all semblance of intelligence vanishes and they become drunk and cannot handle basic responsibilities, like driving safely, or having rational thought. That is the difference between serving our country and kicking back with a few beers. You cannot train someone how to handle their liquor, you can only wait until they turn 21 and hope that those few extra added years will help them behave in a mature responsible way after the liquor kicks in. And in case anyone is wondering, I had to wait until I was 21 to drink.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

My First Post!

How mundane that title is..a momentous occasion for me--to be dipping a toe in the waters of the blog, yet extremely borrrrring to those searching for interesting things to read. 
I apologize for that.
But you have to start here it is.

More to follow~