Saturday, May 31, 2014

Friends, Old and New

Kaye, Karen and I have been friends all our lives, there have been times that we lost touch, or life took us down different paths, but our love for each other stayed strong.  Karen's daughter, Bethany got  married this evening......a sweet beautiful ceremony.  Rick and I, and Kaye and Jamie sat at a table with four of Karen's friends......the old and the new......and you know, it seemed as though all eight of us had known each other for years.

I love the new friends, old friends is reassuring on so many levels.  You care about your friends so much, you want to be a part of their lives through thick and thin, old and new.  It's important that the circle of friends you are a part of, connects, respects and admires each a strange sort of way, all those friendships reflect on you, and how they interact means a great deal.

It was for me, an almost perfect night.....friends, good food, beautiful surroundings.  A thunder storm rolled in as we were leaving, the clouds though dark and threatening were beautiful.  As lightening streaked across the sky, we walked to the car, lights twinkled in the tent, the band played and laughter drifted across the parking lot......did I say almost perfect, it was perfect.  Friends.....old and new.....families joined is good.

Friday, May 30, 2014

New Hair

It seems that change takes place in every area of your life daily.......the past couple of years I have gone through hair stylists like a revolving got sick, one decided to become a mortician,
one has been interesting.  Now maybe finding and sticking with a hair stylist is no big deal for some of you, but I am vain when it comes to my hair.  My  new stylist, Amanda is a sweetie and very talented......keeping my fingers crossed that she stays with me for awhile.
So, I got a new do today, here's a picture of Amanda and me.
It's Friday, last couple of days in May........all kinds of things taking place this weekend, weddings, vacations, gatherings of all all have fun, safe travels.

Thursday, May 29, 2014

Thursday Ramblings

Taz is not amused......we have baby chicks and she wants a chance to use them as moving targets for her training as a Ninja Yorkie.  She is fascinated by their chirps, and desperately wants to be up close and personal with them.......The next few days will be precarious for the chicks, keep your fingers crossed, we are keeping a watchful eye on Taz.

Classes were full today.......Jordan had spent the morning with us, so I was a little tired going in.....but I love it when the word is spread and the students race to get a yoga mat.  Having counselors who write in yoga as part of the treatment plan doesn't hurt.  As I watched the new faces experience yoga for the first time, it was thrilling......they walk in the door, apprehensive, defensive and sometimes cocky.....they leave smiling.  Understanding that yoga can be a tool to help you in recovery is big.

I think I hear my bed calling me, energy has been dropping for the past several days plus a low grade fever has been sucked the life out of me.....wishing you all a good night, sweet dreams.

Wednesday, May 28, 2014


Our world lost such an incredible spirit today, here is my favorite Maya Angelou quote.......

"A bird doesn't sing because it has an answer, it sings because it has a song."  - Maya Angelou

May we all sing our song, and the answers will come.

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

A Day in the Life of a Teacher

My first class today was rather somber.....for the first time in almost nine years, I had a discipline issue in yesterday's class.  Those guys knew they messed up, and they walked in today full of apologies.
I took it as an opportunity to talk about how we see ourselves, our thoughts and how our thoughts become our actions.  I encouraged them to see them selves worthy of a good life, worthy of success.

I asked each of them to stop the chatter in their heads, to no longer see themselves as others saw them.
I told them we all have those "voices" that tell us we are dumb, worthless, stupid, etc.  That each time that voice spoke to ignore it, to replace whatever it was saying with something positive.  I laughed and told them that I wanted a tattoo that said "what do they know" and " who the hell were they" .

Spending time at an addiction center can strip you to the core, guilt is a big commodity there, so is anger.......but guilt and self-doubt and anger cannot help you do have to take responsibility for your choices, your actions.....but to wallow in guilt, is really quite self-centered, and anger a crutch.  Once you understand the choices you made placed you on your path, that's when it clicks that you can make other choices, better can choose a better path.

I never know when I teach what falls on deaf ears or what seeds are planted that will grow and blossom.......I teach and speak from my heart, I trust my instincts and I never pass judgement on my students.....they and the rest of the world do that enough.  For me, all I can do is love, and be as honest and as truthful as I know how.......the rest is up to the student.

Monday, May 26, 2014


" A hero is someone who has given his or her life to something
bigger than oneself."  -  Joseph Campbell

On this Memorial Day, I am grateful for all of our heroes.
Thank you for your service and sacrifice.

Sunday, May 25, 2014


I won't kid you, music can be extremely gratifying and can also be heartbreaking and frustrating.  I think of my music career like a strange and weird love affair, full of giddy high times and soul searching , dark times.......but, I cannot ever imagine my life without my music.

I am not alone with these thoughts.....our music think tank met today and hearing the other guys talk, I realized that common thread we all have of music weaves its spell on our lives daily.  We all continue to write and perform regardless of how our careers are going, whether we get paid or is such a powerful force, we cannot stop, even if we wanted too.

I know that  for many of you, this is a long holiday weekend.  As long as I have military students, I will always teach them on Memorial Day.  It is the best way I know to honor the memories of all of those who have given their lives for their country and to let those know who have served and are still serving that I appreciate their willingness to sacrifice the most valuable gift of all, their life.
Happy Memorial Day, enjoy the time off, enjoy the fun and food.......but don't forget what this day is all about.

PS.  If you get the opportunity to hear live music tomorrow, be sure and tell the musicians thanks and if they have a cd, buy one!

Saturday, May 24, 2014

Quality Time

I know you all get tired of hearing me say this......but here I go is short.
Savor every moment, good and bad, happy and will all be gone in the blink of an eye.
Today, our nephew Haven came up and we did a fish fry......southern style, with slaw, fries and hush puppies.  It was a wonderful assortment of friends and family.......I looked around them, saw their faces, heard their voices and said a prayer of gratitude.

As I took a mental snapshot of each person who came today......I asked for each life to be blessed, I thought about how much each and every one of them meant to me and how much better my life was because of them.  It was one of those days, that you never want to of those days, that everyone who came will remember.

I know that Rick and my family worry sometimes that I push and over extend myself.......but a quality life is important, way more than quantity.   I am exhausted tonight, but that is not important.....the important stuff.......time with those you love, laughter and hugs, good food......I had a very good day....a quality important day.

Friday, May 23, 2014

RIP Steve

This is my friend Steve Weisberg  and me clowning around at Blue Mountain Beach a few years back, at our friends Kaye and Ron's house.

He was a big funny loveable teddy bear of a guy, a terrific musician ( he was John Denver's guitar player) and a friend like no other.

Cancer took Steve's life last night......he fought a hard battle for 18 months....tonight, I hope he and John are playing heavenly music.

Steve's music touched many hearts, his story changed lives.  RIP my friend. I will miss you.

Thursday, May 22, 2014

Holiday Weekend

You know it has been a difficult day at work when the maintenance guy yells at you.......seems I parked in a no-parking zone......but in my defense, there were no signs.

The good news, we are suppose to have meteor showers/maybe even storms tomorrow night......hopefully, they will start tonight...... make sure to check out the stars the next couple of evenings.

A long holiday weekend, no traveling for us......but folks coming by.  Any of you on the road, safe travels and remember what this holiday is all about......memorials of those who have died for this country.

Don't forget, be sure to check out the stars.

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

A Jordan Day

A day of full of Jordan.......his list of things to do included, plant watermelons, make cookies, play with the blocks, walk to the barn, blow bubbles.......we did his list and much more.  All fun stuff, which is what a Jordan day should be.

My body says I had way too much bed says it is time to crawl between the sheets.
Goodnight, Sweet dreams.

Tuesday, May 20, 2014


Taz, the Yorkie, has a shoe fetish.....but only with my shoes.....and thank goodness not with my "good" shoes, but with my garden shoes, sneakers and yoga shoes.  She will bring one out in the open and sleep on it, its mate......she hides.  I have found my shoes, in the laundry room, hidden on the guest bed and on our bed.

At first, I thought she was angry with me and that's why my yoga shoes kept disappearing......she didn't want me to go to work......but now I realize, she just likes the stinky shoes.....the ones that truly have my scent on them.  She doesn't chew's as though she cuddles them.....and lord help us, if we try to take the one she has chosen away from her. She turns into "bad Taz".....a snarling, growling six pound monster.

She has only been with us for a few short months, but her personality is one of the most distinct I have ever seen. We have had dozens of dogs through the years, but none have had a shoe fetish....... or a treat fetish......she hides her treats also.  There is  never a dull moment since the Taz has moved in.

Monday, May 19, 2014


Life happens, the good and the bad......and we never know from one day to the next what is coming our way.  That is why it is important, so very important to cherish each day, to celebrate the good stuff........because things change in the blink of an eye.  I believe if you don't celebrate the good, it stops coming to you......I believe you have to appreciate the milestones.......and if you just sail through life with no thought of all the good that has come your are thumbing your nose at the universe.

You might think that you have plenty of time, the rest of your life.......but I can promise you this......even if you are in your twenties, your forties will stare you at you very soon......every decade goes faster and faster and soon there are fewer and the time your fifties and sixties appear, what you thought was the rest of your life to do all those things you has turned into someday.....and someday is just a word for never.

So do it now, take the trips, celebrate, live life......before it is all just someday.

Sunday, May 18, 2014

Sunday Dinner

My nephew James is a publisher of a newspaper in Ms, he and his wife Andrea and their kids, Stone, Breeze, Daisy and Joy do not get to visit "home" often.  They came home this weekend, so today I cooked Sunday dinner for them, his brother Haven and his wife, Alecia and their son Anthony, my brother Ricky ( their dad) Samantha and Jordan, and my sister Pat and her daughter Jayna and Pat's granddaughter KayLynn.  We had a full house, lots of laughter and plenty of food. The rain came down in buckets, stopping for about a half hour so the kids could go outside, run, and blow bubbles and then come back in for popcicles.

I loved every minute of it.......though tonight, I am bone weary.  That's ok, the kids are growing so fast, in a blink of an eye they will all be grown.......and hopefully, they will have great memories of all the meals, and fun times they had at our house.

Even the dogs are tired tonight......chasing kids and being petted is hard work.
Tomorrow Jordan and our great niece Payton graduate from kindergarten......see what I mean, time August, they will be in first grade and before we know it.....they will be graduating from high, I think it's time for bed.

Saturday, May 17, 2014

Saturday Night Hell

We live about  as far out in the country as you can get, twelve miles to the nearest grocery store......most nights the only thing you can hear is an occasional car, the owl that lives near the barn,
a dog barking.  A few years ago on a Saturday night we begin to hear the most dreadful noise......roaring engines, whine of motors and it went on for hours.  It seems that someone opened
a race track of sorts across the river from us.......a dirt track I believe is what some call it......I don't really know.  I just know that since that dreadful horrible night, when the weather is warm and we should all be sitting on porches listening to the crickets and owls......we hear nothing but the constant roar of car engines for 3 or 4 hours.  It is like being in hell, at your home.

Because we live in a poor rural area, and the zoning is iffy ( meaning dollars sliding through hands)
our paradise becomes hell during the warm months on Saturday nights.  I know there are millions of race fans.......I wish the track was next door to each of you so you could enjoy the roar and incessant whine.  At one point a couple of years ago, some spectators were killed there, and for awhile we had our peaceful Saturday nights back.  This year I suppose someone either came up with insurance money or maybe they just decided to run again until someone else dies.

So it goes tonight, round and round and round.......louder and louder and louder......I wish I knew where the drivers and owners lived.......I'd get my friends who do sound for stadium concerts to go set up on the streets in front of their houses at 4:00am in the morning and play Madame Butterfly at the same decibel level that they play AC/DC for 80,000 fans for four hours.  Right now, all we can do is pray for a monsoon every Saturday night, rain dances welcome!

Friday, May 16, 2014

May Day

I spent the first half of the day with Jordan and his class mates at May was a morning filled with jump jumps, snow cones, whirly rides, hot dogs and laughing kids.  I am exhausted.  What a day!

Thursday, May 15, 2014

Farm Fresh

We always plant our gardens later than most......we understand Alabama weather in the spring......between tornadoes, hail storms, winds and monsoonal rains, and extreme shifts in temperatures.......farming here is a crap shoot.  We waited until about a week and a half ago to plant, we made it through blackberry winter and hoped that the last of the chilly air was gone.
Tonight we will probably break our low temperature record for this date, high today was in the sixties, it should be mid-eighties......farming is not for wussies.  My respect for those farmers who make their living farming is immense.......we only farm to supplement our pantry and our families and friends pantries......I still bite my nails.

This summer if you get the opportunity to visit a farm, to buy fresh produce from the hands who tilled the soil for it.......please do so.  Eating and buying local food from its source is better for you, the environment and the people who grow it. You can taste the difference in a tomato that is grown a few miles away, versus the ones that are shipped from a thousand miles away.  Go pick yourself some fresh strawberries or blueberries, eat one warm from the sun and feel your taste buds smile.

Eating locally and seasonally just makes sense.......fresh berries, veggies and melons in the spring and summer are just what your body needs.......while greens and root veggies bring your body comfort in the fall and winter.  You should also try to grow something yourself, you can grow a tomato in a flower pot, potatoes in a barrel, lettuce on your window sill. There are many patio varieties of fruits and vegetables......just waiting for the weekend farmer to plant.  Who knows, you may love it so move to the country!

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

John Roses

The tiny pink roses on my kitchen window sill bring a smile to my face each spring when they bloom.
My grandmother called them "seven sisters".  I call them John Roses.

When Rick and I first married, one of our dearest friends was John.  He was big and loud, smart and funny and had the most loving heart of anyone I had ever known.  He and his wife Linda lived on a small farm a few miles from us.  One day I mentioned the seven sisters roses that grew in my grandmother's garden and how I would love to have them in our yard.  John smiled and told me they were growing wild on their farm and he would bring me a bush.

In 1993, during a spring blizzard here in Alabama
( we had 18 inches of snow, in March) John died.
Our world of friends has never been the same.
The little rose bush John gave me, seemed to know how much we missed him.  It too, became bigger than life.  It now has a diameter of around 50 feet and it's tiny pink roses look like a pink cloud at the corner of our property. I filled the house with John Roses today and remembered  with love and many smiles our friend, John.

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Weather Troubles

Silly me, I believed the weather guys was almost 90 degrees with sunshine when I made it into work this afternoon.  Parking near the building, under the shade of the trees was not meant to be, so I park in the field in the full sun and decide to roll Ingrid's ( my Volvo) windows down because she hates the heat.  She's from Sweden, she likes things cool and brisk.  I rolled the windows down because the local weathermen said rain tonight and tomorrow.  In the middle of my classes this afternoon, the monsoons hit......I forgot about Ingrid's windows, until.......after work, I sat down in a very wet seat.

I have on yoga pants, thin as paper, a medium grey color.......I still have to drive to the other building and clock out.  Often when I clock out, there is no one in the lobby where HR is......not so today....a full lobby of patients waiting to check in.........and ..........because my yoga pants are thin and grey.....and my car seat was rear end is dripping. Yep, my big old yoga butt is wet as I go traipsing through the lobby and now everyone knows what type of underwear I wear.  I definitely look as though I might have had an unfortunate bathroom accident.  I do the fastest clock out ever, and speed walk through the lobby.....uttering curses at the weathermen and myself for listening to them.

Today is Tuesday, considering how many of you feel about Monday.......this was my Monday.
Tomorrow is Wednesday, hump day......I am off and Ingrid's windows will not be rolled down.....she is just going to have to learn to deal with the heat.
Goodnight, Sweet dreams  

Monday, May 12, 2014

Mondays's an interesting day, the beginning of the week....often thought to be stressful, the return to work or school after the weekend.......I like Mondays.  Mondays are the opportunity to begin again......sort of like a new year......a new week, a new day.

If you had a bad week before, Mondays give you the opportunity to have a better one this week.  If you had a great weekend, you can tell everyone about it on Monday......if your weekend was lousy, then thank goodness, it's Monday.

Whatever your Monday has been.....good or's to the rest of the week.
May the full moon shine its silvery light on you and yours, may your skies be blue, the flowers sweet....may everything go as it should, and it will.

Sunday, May 11, 2014

Art in the Gym

Yesterday's Art in the Park became Art in the Gym because of the chance of rain.  My friend Diana shot this picture of me, doing what I love most, on her phone.

I hope you all had a wonderful Mother's Day.
May this week of the full moon bring good news, abundance and joy to you all.

Saturday, May 10, 2014

Saturday's Thoughts and Musings

We played at Art In the Park in Jasper gig.  Always amazing to see how creative people are, one of my favorite booths......Artsy Fartsy.  The two young women are daughters of a friend that I went to high school with many years ago.  They take found materials, and create beautiful pieces of art......some of it is fun and whimsical, some is faith based.  I love that they recycle others junk and garbage and create folk art.

Since tomorrow is Mother's Day I found myself thinking about my mom.  This is my ninth Mother's Day without her......and I do miss her so much.  She was so much fun to buy gifts for, she had great
taste in clothing and I loved surprising her with new clothes.  I actually have the very first Mother's Day gift I ever bought her.  It is a plaster wall hanging, looks like a scroll, and has the words "God is able to make all grace abound toward you."  I got my dad to take me to a family owned variety store when I was four or five, and I purchased it for the big price of $1.  She hung it proudly, and after she died, it was the one thing that belonged to her that I wanted most.

Wishing you all a wonderful Mother's Day weekend.......I hope you moms get to spend time with your kids.....and for those of you who are like me, with no kids........I believe at some point, we all have exhibited mother like qualities to some one........Happy Mother's Day.

Friday, May 9, 2014

Fun Is Good Medicine

Today was a very good day.  It was time for us to read to Jordan's kindergarten class, so we picked up the book, Pete the Cat, Rocking in My School Shoes.  We got to Jordan's classroom about nine this morning and there were all five kindergarten classes waiting for us.  We took the guitar, let the kids interact with us, and we all had a wonderful time.

At lunch, we met my sister Pat and her daughters Becky and Jayna in Birmingham.  I am often asked if I have kids, I say no, but I have great nieces and nephews who tell people that Rick and I are their second parents.  For as long as I can remember, Becky and Jayna have always bought me mother's day gifts, today was no exception.  I can't imagine birthing children and loving them anymore than I do these girls.

I know I should have stayed home and rested today......but reading to five kindergarten classes and having lunch with my sister and nieces was way more important.....and much more fun.  You know, fun is good medicine.

Thursday, May 8, 2014


My typical day after treatment.......most of the day has been spent on the sofa.  My energy is starting to return, the chills have backed off, and so far, no nausea ( happy day).

Taz has been my consent companion, she appeared at our door when I need her most( and it turns out, she needed us too)  For those of you who don't Taz, she is a Yorkie that showed up at our door back in Feb when it was 5 degrees.  It took us a while to communicate with her owners, but when they found out how sick I had been that month, and how she had never left my side they told us to keep her.  It turns out, Taz was very sick too, but she is much better now.  Today she has been my shadow, never letting me out of her sight, sleeping on the sofa with me.

It is amazing what good medicine pets can be, Calliou the wacky collie keeps an ever watchful eye on me when all is not well.  He and Taz have made every step I've made today.  I love my dogs.....and I think they love me.

Hoping for more energy tomorrow, it usually takes about four days to get back to "normal"......
for the first time in my life, I want to be normal.  :)

Wednesday, May 7, 2014


Treatment # seems as though #28 was just yesterday.  Things were not so busy in the room filled with big green chairs today, but it was a strange day.......a patient coded, another one was admitted to the just seemed to be a day gone awry.

These treatment days are long.....and exhausting.  How can lying in a recliner be so tiring?  But I did get to see my chair buddy Louis, who has become one of my best friends.  A young man was in the chair beside me today, as Louis and Rick and I laughed and talked, the young man looked on with awe.
When Louis left, I told the young man a little about Louis......the young man was impressed.  Today Louis touched someone without even realizing it.  We all do that you know......touch people without realizing that we did.  The way we act, talk, interact with others......people take notice.

I felt so bad for the nurses today.....usually Wednesdays are slow, today was a stressful day for them.
I know they were happy when the clock struck 4:00.  When I left them today, I reminded them to go home and rest, to care for themselves.  They do important work, a lot of people, including myself depend on them.

29 treatments, open ended, never ending........that is a long,long time. This week has been an emotional roller coaster for is easy to get depressed, when you allow yourself to think of the future.
I cry sometimes, and want things to be normal again......I want the past.....I have to practice what I going back, learn from the in the now, that is all we have.....normal changes, what was once normal is no longer......hard lessons.

My bed is calling me, I have on my favorite old worn Eeyore pajamas....tonight I needed comfort.
Goodnight Sweet dreams.

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Twenty Years From Now

"Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines.  Catch the trade winds in your sails.  Explore.
Dream. Discover. "  - Mark Twain

My favorite Twain quote, I think this one is a truth we should all live by.
It's been a long, but good day.  We met our friends Kaye and Jamie at the Birmingham Art Museum, had a wonderful lunch and spent the afternoon surrounded by beauty and creativity.
Kaye and I enjoying lunch, yes, I know we look alike......we are best friends and distant cousins.

Monday, May 5, 2014

Forty Years

forty years ago, in Brewton, Alabama, on this day Rick and I married......Hostess Twinkies and Boone's Farm wine was our reception goodies, our honeymoon was Laguna Beach Florida.
Forty years, good and bad......they said it would never last.
What do "they" know?

Sunday, May 4, 2014

Personal Battles

Some days the struggles that go on within each of us cannot be explained to the rest of the world.....
everything looks normal on the outside, but there is turmoil within.  There are some battles that are meant to be fought alone with one's self.

I think we all have those times, what we do and how we deal with them changes our lives, changes our path.  Once they are over, we move on, maybe never even telling anyone about our struggles.

Public battles shape us, and shape how we are looked upon by others, but the private ones that go on in our heads may be the ones that contribute the most to who we are.......they might also be the ones we replay over and over, wondering if we made the right choice, second guessing our decisions.

I believe that living our lives one day, one breath at a time keeps us sane, helps us to maintain some sense of normal when the inner battles are being fought.  There are no medals for those battles, no congratulations of a job well done......just the inner peace of knowing, you made it through one more time.

Saturday, May 3, 2014

Place of Peace

We cleaned the screened side porch today, washed all the is almost porch season.
If you have never experienced the joy of sitting on a screened porch, come on down and spend some time.  The ceiling fan turns slow, just a gentle breeze.  The old glider was a my grandmother's, a perfect spot for an afternoon nap.  The table has seen paint, glue, glitter, play dough and every imaginable arts and crafts project known to our nieces and nephews.  The old yellow chair is the perfect place to sit and read.  I painted the floor cloth several years ago, but it has aged well.
That porch is one of my most favorite spots on earth.  I think every house should have one.  It is my place to sit in stillness, listen to the birds and the water that flows in the is a place of peace.

Friday, May 2, 2014

Bad Fudge

Because my kid brother and I came along later in life, our childhoods were different than those of our older siblings.  We were living in Chicago in 1964, my mom worked a later shift than my dad so often he cooked dinner. ( with my help of course)  One afternoon my brother Ricky suggested we surprise Momma with home made fudge, my dad agreed that she would love it.
We found the recipe and proceeded to whip up what the three of us agreed would be the best fudge ever.

Something went horribly this day, I'm not sure what happened......but as Ricky and I took turns stirring the concoction, inhaling the sweet aroma we noticed it didn't look like the fudge that mother made.  It was dark, shinny and thick like molasses, actually getting thicker with each stir.
Daddy decided it had cooked long enough, been stirred long enough and just needed some freezer time.  We put pan with spoon in the freezer.   About 30 minutes before Momma was due home, we took a look at our masterpiece, we couldn't wait to pour it on the platter and cut those big thick chunks.

It was a solid blob of something that resemble a big chocolate lolly pop......the spoon was stuck in the middle.....nothing would come out of the was like a giant Tootsie Pop without the stick or the chewy center.  The three of us looked at each, all my dad could say was......throw it out, throw the pan, everything in the garbage, don't tell your this day, we never told our mom.

Thursday, May 1, 2014

May 1

May 1......May day, don't forget to feed the faeries tonight

May 1.....blackberry winter ( the blackberries are blooming)  cool spring days

May 1.....April storms are gone

May 1......the most brilliant blue skies and beautiful flowers

May 1......Mother's Day this month

May 1.....the month Rick and I had our first date in 1968, the month we married 40 years ago

May 1.....treatment #29 this month

May 1.....time to plant our garden, get the porch, deck and patio ready for summer

May 1......the fifth month of 2014, the year is almost half gone

May 1......usually the last moderate temps we have until September, soon we become the hot country

May 1.......soon the blueberries will be ripe, I can't wait