Monday, January 31, 2011

I Hate Mondays!

There is really nothing good to be said about a Monday.  Unless of course, it is a day off.  That is a horse of a different color.  But in general, Monday's stink.  I hate 'em!  Today is no exception.  I didn't want to get up, then the traffic in to work was terrible, work is -well WORK, need I say more?!  If I were ruler of all things, I would make Mondays a stay home day.  Different than a week-end day, where you can do what you want on Saturday and Sunday.  Monday you just stay home.  The whole focus of Monday would be to gear up and re-focus yourself and your family for the week ahead.  Doesn't that sound like a good idea? 
No running around?         No errands?             No jumping in and out of the car?            No spending money?       
                None of that.
Just you and your family. At home.  No neighbors.  No stores.  No homework.  No work.  Just family time.
Quite, together, BE time.  The kids won't be bugging you to go outside or to go to Tommy's house or to the movies or anything, 'cuz your can't.  It's the law of the land.  Of the supreme ruler of all things.  Just quiet family time.  See.  Isn't this sounding better and better?   You're liking it, aren't you?  Go ahead, admit it?

Yeah, me too.

In the meantime, Mondays suck.

So, how was you're weekend?

I was productive if nothing else.  I finished up Bella's room.  Curtains are hung, shelf is up, furniture is all moved in, and there are even a few things on the walls.  For all intents and purposes, her room is done.  Some finishing touches need to go in, but we have to wait for those to arrive.
After I finished in there, I moved into her old room and started priming the walls for paint.  Worked on that for most of the remainder of Saturday.  Cleared out some of the junk that remained in the room that no one wanted to claim, and then Jim and I headed out for a bite to eat and then on to Home Depot.  I know, it was a hot Saturday night!  Picked up the paint that I was going to need and some other misc. items. 
So after church on Sunday I headed upstairs to change my clothes and then straight into the next room to start painting.  I didn't stop until I had run out of paint.  Which happened to be 1/2 a wall shy of finishing the room!  I got two coats on everything but that final 1/2 a wall.  By that time it was 4:30, I was beat and in no mood to run down to the store for more paint, so I cleaned up and called it a day. 
Jim has promised to pick up the paint for me today and I'll finish after work this evening.  So close!
Then, we can begin moving the furniture in and I can start organizing my craft room!  It has been nearly six months since my stuff has been in one place and since I've been able to work on anything.  I won't know where to begin.    I'm sure that I'll be able to figure something out though!

But I won't be working on it over the weekend as I found out on Thursday that a Memorial Service has been planned for Richard on Saturday.  So, I will be flying down to Florida to the rest of my extended family on Thursday as we gather together to celebrate and to honor Richard's life.
So, say a prayer if you will.  I know that it is going to be a difficult time, but one that we will get through together and with God's love.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

A New Normal

I'm going to try to get back to a more regular schedule of posting.  Things have been rather difficult as of late.  My family has been so shocked and saddened by the news of my cousins' death and the violence surrounding it.  We are all just reeling from the horror of it all.  Most especially, his mother, father and of course, his wife.  It is such a tragedy.  No one expects something like this to touch  your world and when it does, you don't know what to do, where to turn, or how to act.  It has been almost a week since the police showed up at my aunts home to tell her of the news and yet, his body still has not been released.  There has been no service, no arrest in the case, no official word on what really happened, no closure.  Perhaps there never will be.  That has got to be very difficult to live with.  How do you reconcile yourself with that?
What they do know is that sometimes Richard didn't make the best choices.  He fought with his demons, he wrestled with them, he overcame them.  Only to slip and fall to fight his way back to the top again.  He was a fighter, make no mistake.  Richard didn't come by things easily.  He struggled.  He worked hard, he fought and he won.  He knew the feeling of despair that comes from failure and he wore a smile that radiated through his eyes from a triumph that no one but he could fully understand.  He had a heart as big as his chest and would give you the shirt off his back if you needed it.  He grew up, loved and was loved in return.  We grieve the loss of him.
The circumstances surrounding his death should in no way define the kind of person he was.  He was a good man.  A loving man.  A kind man.  A gentle man.  A man who will be missed.

Okay, the tears are done.  I'll tell you about our anniversary.  Jim and I went to the Bavarian Inn as promised.  It was great.  Cold, but great.  It was just nice to get away and be alone.  The room was nice, king sized bed, fire place, jacuzzi tub, river view.  Jim had thought to have a cheese and fruit tray sent to the room so it was waiting for us when we got in, very nice.  We brought a bottle of wine so we had the wine and cheese in front of the fire place and it was quiet.  Very nice.  When we went to dinner it was freezing!  But it was so crowded, the place really does quite a good business.  The food was really good, but the desert was delicious!  I has a raspberry lindser torte and Jim has apple strudle-mmm good!  Best part was the chef took melted chocolate and wrote Happy Anniversary on our plates with it and then put a candle in it and brought it to the table.  So pretty!  I took a picture, but it didn't come out. 
Here are some pictures of the views:
The view from our balcony.

A side view of the chalet.

The front view of our chalet.

After we got home on Sunday I rested for a while and then got back to work.  I finished painting Bella's room!  Finally!  Last night after work Jim, Michelle and I moved Bella's furniture into her new r oom.  There are still more things to do but we are getting there!  Her old room is trashed, lots of toys and junk that has to be moved, pictures on the wall yet, but the big stuff is done. I'll post pictures when it's done, done.  Hopefully by the weekend I will be able to start priming that room.

This morning we woke up to snow.  All the major school systems in the area have closed for the day.  We are told to expect about 8 inches, which is significant in these parts.  I will be at work for most of the day.  Bleh!

Friday, January 21, 2011

Sad Day

It is with a heavy heart that I tell you all that my cousin's body was found yesterday.  He had been murdered, shot in the head.  It is unfathonable for me to think how one human being can point a gun at anothers' head and pull the trigger.  Ending one life and causing so much pain and  heartache to others. 
Richard was just 40 years old and had a lifetime of promise ahead of him.  His heart was full of love, life and laughter.  He was such a good, sweet and loving soul whose spirit here on earth will certainlly be missed.  My heart goes out to his parents, my aunt and uncle, his brother and his wife, Andrea.  He was loved by many and will be missed by many.

"The Lord is close to the brokenhearted. He recues those whose spirits are crushed." Psalm 34:18 (nlt)

Thursday, January 20, 2011

20 Days Into 2011...

It hardly seems possible.  Where has the time gone?  I can't keep up, just as I begin to feel as though I can get it all together, the rug gets yanked out from beneath me once again.  And then I start scrambling once again to get back up, put the pieces in place and start all over again.  And so it goes.

Such is the way my year has begun.  I've begun to expect nothing less.  Not that I feel like I deserve anything more, mind you.  I am but a humble servant.  (Perhaps I need to work on the humble part a little bit more.)  But in my rush and bustle to pick up the pieces, my capacity to 'serve' seems to have been misplaced.  I don't feel like the balls that I work so hard at keeping in the air are the ones that He wants me to keep airborn.  Though I am not certain.  I listen for His voice.  I search for a sign from Him.  And I pray for direction, and I will continue to pray.  I know that what I do is important in and of itself.  It is important to be  here for my family, to give them faith and hope, to work hard and function as I do in the capacity that I do.  I try to be a good person and to carry Him with me where I go, to reach out to others, to make my world larger.  Sometimes though, the challenges overwhelm me. 

  It is then, that I know I have to rise above it and try harder.  Be better, stronger, more faithful.  But can I?  Can I be that person?   

Today it is especially difficult.  Today, my body betrays me.  I am sick.  Again.  I struggle with pain and fatigue.  It has been weeks.  Strep throat followed by a terrible cold.  Three weeks of that and then just when the sniffling and sneezing had finally gone away and I seemed to be free of symptoms I went to bed and during the night on Tuesday I coughed.  Just once.  But that one cough was telling.  It was in my chest.  And it hurt.  Burned.  By the time morning broke, my voice was about gone, and I was feeling quite terrible.  I went to work and as the day progressed, so did my symptoms.  More coughing, fever, fatigue, headache and general malaise.  I called to schedule an appointment with the doctor but could not get in until this morning.  So at 7:45 I went in and met with her.  Before she examined me she asked me to explain what was going on so I did.  I told he my symptoms and said it felt like it was in my bronchial tubles.  She examined me and said that I was extremely congested and that sure enough I had bronchitis that was working its way into pnemonia.   I feel lousy!  But, back to work.  Hoping to leave early, taking a break now to blog.  Ha!
Dropped off my prescriptions with Jim so he can get them filled for me.

Monday is our 30th wedding anniversary.  Thirty years!  Jim made reservations to take me to a nice inn on the river not too far from here.  Just the two of us.  Dinner first.  Fireplace and hot tub in the room, and I am not going to be sick!  Pray that the medicine works!  I could really use a break. 
This is the place.
We were there once before, 15 years ago.  But it snowed, and snowed and snowed and we had to leave early.  Turned into a blizzard really.  Luck never was our thing.  Hopefully this time will be better!

Also, keep my family in your prayers if you will.  Though I hesitate to say this I feel like I must put it out there.  My cousin is missing.  It has been over a week now.  He is an adult, married and a paramedic.  He was talking to his wife on the cell phone from his car and then the phone went dead, nothing since.  The police found his car, it was burned.  No sign of him.  Nothing.  Pray.  My aunt is a wreck as you can well imagine.  Her son.  His wife is sure that he will be fine.  Everyone just want him home.  Pray.  Please. 

LORD, on the basis of Your Word, I ask that you spread Your protection over me this day. Keep me from all harm, and watch over my life. Watch over my coming and my going both now and forevermore. Be a wall of fire around me, Lord. Let Your favor surround me like a shield. Give Your angels charge over me to guard me in all of my ways. Thank You, Lord, that Your angels are encamped all around me–to rescue and deliver me from all evil, harm, destruction, disease, and defeat! (Psalm 5:11; Psalm 121:7-8; Zechariah 2:5; Psalm 5:12; Psalm 91:11; Psalm 34:7)


Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Here I go again...

It's Tuesday already!  Where does the time go?  I am struggling to keep my head above water.  Feel like I am drowning, barely keeping it together.  Sometimes life gets that way.  No time for the fun stuff, so busy working and catching up, then back to work again.  Sleep, work and start all over again.  Getting me run down.  Then in my spare time, I've decided to start painting my house.  I know.  Get it all out now-I'm nuts!  Trust me, I've heard it all before-but I really need to get it done.  The state of my house is getting me down.
Can't stand being in that no-man's land.  Nothing is quite finished, so everything is a mess.  Or so it seems to me.  And I'm the one who matters, right?  I thought so.
So Saturday I started painting what was the den and before that was Timmy's old bedroom and will soon become Isabella's new bedroom.  It was Americana Blue.  A very nice, soothing shade of blue, but not for Bella.  I started in the closet, because it was a hot mess!  Trust me.  I was just painting the whole thing white and I was doing above the closet doors when I happened to look down and saw the inside of one closet door and was met with a sweet surprise.  There written in green crayon was a long lost message from my son, scrawled across the back of the closet door it said 'I love my Mom and Dad'.  Took my breath away.  That will not be painted over-ever!  Gave me an extra boost of energy too.  I finished the closet and moved on to the room.  Decided to do the room the way her current room is painted so started bringing the white of the ceiling down on the walls about 12 inches all the way around the room.  Mind you, I am trying to cover blue.  Sunday morning and three coats of paint later, got it covered.  Then I started priming the rest of the walls and I got the whole room primed with two coats with the exception of one wall.  As I was about to move onto the final coat on the final wall, I ran out of primer.  Decided that would be a good place to stop for the night.  I don't know when I'll get back to it, because I'm not much good during the week and we have company coming this weekend, but it will get done.  When it does, I'll take pictures and share them!
All that work though must have made me very restless.  I went to bed Saturday night and Jim said that he woke me several times to try and stop me from talking in my sleep.  I kept waking him up.  Michelle and Shawn had been out on a date and came back to the house and were watching tv in the family room, when I came downstairs to the kitchen.  I started talking about people in the street being in my way and having to move the dog to get him out of the way.  Michelle said I turned to her and yelled 'In my arms!' turned and went back to bed.  She said that Shawn laughed so hard he couldn't catch his breath.  Then it continued after I went back to bed.  I just kept talking and yelling.  Jim said at one point I was laughing and when he asked who I was talking to I said "God, I'm talking to God!'  In the morning Bella complained that I woke her up with my 'sleep talking' as she calls it.  Oh well, what's a girl to do.  At least I can amuse my family!

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

It's Always the Blog that Suffers

                                              ***WARNING: PICTURE HEAVY!!!!***

I know that I said that I'd post again on Thursday and it is now Tuesday, but some things have to go by the wayside and it is unfortunately, the blog that suffers.  I have had a lot on my plate and on top of it all, I got sick and spent 2 1/2 hours at the doctor's office on Thursday.  Diagnosis: Strep Throat. On top of that I got a terrible cold so instead of feeling better, I started to feel worse and then the medicine that I was put on made me sick to my stomach.  So, I've been a mess!  Just starting to feel somewhat human again now. 

Anyway, Christmas was wonderful.  Bella got everything that she wanted and lots of stuff that she didn't even know she wanted. The highlight of her day was probably when she opened her American Girl Doll.  She coveted that doll but hadn't dard to ask for it, so it was a total surprise.  She was SO excited!  She told us that we spoiled her and that she was so, so, so lucky.  Made this Grandma's heart feel good.
Bella discovers 'Lainey'.
It was just so nice to have the kids home and have all of us together too.  That was the  most precious gift. 
We all got nice gifts and just really enjoyed the day.
After dinner Tim went home to celebrate Christmas with his girlfriend and Michelle put Bella to bed and then went to celebrate with Shawn and Jim and I collapsed.  We are really getting old.  Ha!

On Sunday we traveled up to Pa. to visit with Jim's brother, sister and nephew.  We exchanged gifts with them, visited and had dinner and then headed back home again.  It was a busy day, but I am so glad that we have that opportunity to get up there and see them each year.  It's nice to see everyone and it means an awful lot to Jim, so I am happy that we can do it. 
When we got home there was a messag on our maching from my Dad saying that he and Marlena had left N.J. on Sunday instead of Monday to try and beat the snow and they were now in town.  (We were expecting them on Monday.)  I called them and they were safe in their  hotel room, lucky to have beaten the snow that hit the east coast.  So, they came over in the morning.  Bella was so excited!  Her Christmas just never ended! 
Here's my Dad showing off his hat, complete with hair!

To add to the fun, Uncle Timmy came back home to see the Grandparents!  Bella was in heaven!

Tuesday morning we had breakfast and then they left, on their way to Florida and sunnier skies!  Then later in the afternoon, my Mom and Dad arrived from Vermont.  They had gotten snowed in for a day or so, having gotten more than 24 inches of the white stuff.  So they finally were able to make it in and we had a nice visit with them.  Bella and Nana had fun playing with all of Bella's new toys.

Everyone had a chance to meet  Shawn, so that was nice too.  Then it was on to birthdays!
First up was Michelle.  Friday the 31st, we all had the day off so we took it easy getting up, didn't rush to get dressed or anything.  It was nice.  Finally, Michelle opened her presents and loved everything-especially her cowgirl boots!  Later in the evening Shawn and Aiden joined us and we all went out for dinner at a Japanese hibachi restaurant.  Mmmmm!  Good food.  Then on home for ice cream cake and happy birthday.
Bella and Michelle
Bella and Aiden

Shawn and Michelle
Michelle & Shawn were going to keep the kids at our house until Bella went to bed and then go back to Shawn's house and put Aiden to bed, but the kids had such a good time playing together and were so well behaved that they just stayed at the house.  Shawn and Aiden wound up leaving at 12:45 and left with the promise that if the kids got a good night sleep, Shawn could bring Aiden back to play again the next day!  It was too cute!  When Saturday arrived and Bella woke up her first question of the day was ' When is Aiden coming over?'.  We heard that until Aiden actually arrived.  At dinner that evening they announced that they were buddies who played well together and had fun together.  Aiden said 'That's because we love each other!'  Kids, gotta love them!

We also celebrated Jim's birthday on Saturday.  I gotta tell you, he probably has the worst birthday of all.  By the time his birthday arrives everyone is so tired of partying and eating out and all that it is kinda like- oh yeah, happy birthday!  Even Jim.  For his birthday dinner this year he wanted chili, so we had chili.  He was tired of heavy meals and eating out and thought chili would be good to have while the football games were on and to have as leftovers the next day as well.  So, chili it was!  Lucky me. 
Jim opened his gifts and was quite happy with his presents as well, especially his heated bird bath.  (The birds like it too!) 

So, that is it for the celebrations.  Now we are back to school and work and trying to get back to a normal routine.  Not easy to do.  I'd like nothing more than a nice long nap about now!  
Until the next time-