Wednesday, December 31, 2014


HAPPY NEW YEAR!  Yep, spent half the day at the infusion room getting the drip, hanging out with Louis and the rest of the gang.  Believe it or not, there was much laughter and hope in those green chairs today......and many hugs and wishes for the new year.

I slept most of the afternoon, hoping that I can stay awake for the ringing in of the New Year. Treatment number 37 today.

Tonight, my New Year's wishes for everyone........stay in the moment, live for today......there are no promises of tomorrow, not even for the next breath......all we have is this breath, all we have is right now.  May we all know love, may we all know joy, and may we all know peace.

HAPPY NEW YEAR.........2015......make it your best ever.

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

A Difference

a quote for year's end.......

"You cannot get through a single day without having an impact on the world around you. What you do makes a difference.  You have to decide what kind of difference you want to make. " jane goodall

Monday, December 29, 2014

Best Year Yet

Classes were good today, most are ready to face the New Year with a new life and new attitude.......
If you are at an addiction center during Christmas by the New Year, you are ready to let go of the past, release the old, and move on.  I passed out the sheets with the 10 questions from the book, Your Best Year Yet, by Jinny S. Ditzler.  I always tell my students they can read the questions and answer them as they read, but the most effective and productive way........write the answers down and be honest.

So here are the 10 questions.........

1. What did I accomplish?  ( I love that you are given the opportunity to start on a positive note)
2.What were my biggest disappointments?
3. What did I learn?
4. How do I limit myself and how can I stop?
5.What are my personal values?
6.What roles do I play?
7. Which role is my major focus for next year?
8. What are my goals for each role?
9. What are my top ten goals for next year?
10.How can I make sure I achieve them?

The first time I read this book and answered these questions, it changed my life.......I still answer these questions yearly......they are my personal wake-up call to the life I want to live.
I hope you find them as helpful as I do.  The book is one of my most treasured.

Sunday, December 28, 2014

Thoughts of the New Year

December 28, 2014..............I have great expectations for 2015.  I have spent a great deal of time the past few days thinking of what I want this coming year, how I want to spend my energy.

Treatment is Wednesday, yep......New Year's Eve in the infusion room......I figure we will have some sort of wild party.  :)  The rain continues to fall seems appropriate to have rain the last few days of the year......a washing of the past if you will, a cleansing.

Is it just me or does everyone contemplate their place in the universe the last few days of each year?
I am not big on resolutions, but I do my vision board.......I like to let the universe know some things I would like, a few paths I want to take, some experiences to share......and then expect the best.
It has worked well for me the past few years, I see no reason to change now.

Looking forward to teaching my classes tomorrow, sharing my thoughts on intention.
May your Monday bring happy surprises, and and peace.

Saturday, December 27, 2014

Saturday Night

It seems that the monsoons have hit again this weekend........for the past few weekends we have had downpours, three to four inches of rain.....but it sounds so nice on the tin roof.
Our friend Fred came for dinner tonight, he is our friend, my work mate, and our sound guy ........our lives are better for knowing Fred, actually anyone who has ever met him has benefited in some way.
I knew the first time I ever met him at work, that we would be great friends and now, well Fred is really family.  A fun dinner, lots of lively favorite way to spend time.

It is hard to believe this year is almost over.  We have had a great year for our music, really good gigs, sold some cds, met other good singer/songwriters.  We have done some much needed projects around the house.  Taz came to live with us.  The downside has been how much time the bouts of meningitis robbed me of time and we haven't traveled much......there is always next year.

Next weekend I will do my annual vision board, more about that later.
Long day and the sound of the raindrops on the's like a lullaby.
Goodnight, Sweet dreams

Friday, December 26, 2014

A Good Day

a good day, there was sunshine, a walk with the dogs ( well a run with Taz) and I taught two classes.
it was a  good Christmas, not too rushed.
Santa brought me a sewing machine, can't wait to make something
tomorrow lunch with friends, dinner with another friend
Sunday, Christmas with Rick's family
safe travels to those of you on the road

goodnight, sweet dreams

Thursday, December 25, 2014


tonight I give you a most beautiful quote, author unknown, but rendered on a piece of art by calligraphy and graphic artist, Michael Podesta.....

" If, as Herod, we fill our lives with things, and again with things, if we consider ourselves so unimportant that we must fill every  moment of our lives with action, when will we have the time to make the long slow journey  across the desert as did the Magi? Or sit  and watch the stars as did the shepherds? Or brood over the coming of the child as did Mary?  For each one of us, there is a desert to travel.  A star to discover.  And a being within ourselves to bring to life."

I hope your Christmas has been filled with good food, friends and family.......but, I also hope you find time to travel your desert, discover your star, and find that being within and give it life.
Merry Christmas

Wednesday, December 24, 2014




Tuesday, December 23, 2014

December Thunder

Rain has come down in torrents one point we had pink lightening.  For years Rick laughed at my folk wisdom passed down from my grandmother Mamie and my mom.......through the years he has grown wiser.   It might  be our Irish heritage,  my brother Ricky and I have always been fascinated with the weather, but so was Mamie.   Mamie's favorite weather wisdom was thunder in December, snow on that same day in January........I can't remember a time when she was wrong on that one.......will keep you posted on the weather here January 23.  Another bit of wisdom ( non-weather) that she passed on to me concerning mishaps with broken dishes, figurines,etc.........and maybe she was just trying to make me feel better.......when I was a child, maybe 10 or 11, I was looking at one of the many figurines that she had and I dropped it, of course it broke.  I was upset, but she told me that the breaking of something she cared for, protected someone she loved from being hurt.  Through the years, I have told myself that one many times, when a glass or dish was broken.

Most of the gifts are wrapped, I have not made my biscotti, will do that tomorrow, along with Christmas cookies and more spiced cider.  A bout with meningitis again last night and getting up with some bronchial stuff today, kept me from teaching my classes, hopes are high for Friday.
For those of you north and east of us.......rain is on its way, stay safe, and warm.
Goodnight Sweet Dreams
Happy Christmas Eve Eve

Monday, December 22, 2014

Christmas Every Day

a Christmas quote for you tonight......

"Christmas is not a season but a state of mind.  To cherish peace and goodwill, to be plenteous in mercy, is to have the real Spirit of Christmas."

If we cherished peace and goodwill and were generous with our mercy, every day could be Christmas.  We sing the carols, tell the story, but do we cherish peace and goodwill, do we show mercy?

Goodnight, Sweet dreams........peace and goodwill.

Sunday, December 21, 2014

Peppermint Memories

It has been damp and cold the past few days, though it is warming and storms are predicted for Tuesday night.......Christmas memories have haunted me more this year than in the past few years.
Rick brought home a couple of bundles of Bob's peppermint sticks this evening......I thought of my grandmother Mamie and grandfather of my very first Christmas memories is being at their house in front of their fireplace with an orange and a peppermint stick.  They were poor as church mice, but every Christmas, they had oranges, peppermint sticks and chocolate cream drops.
Mamie always got every child, grandchild, spouse, etc. something at Christmas, usually it was a pair of socks.  After Rick and I married, his first gift from her was socks, the name tag said to: jilder's husband.  My family called me Jilta, Jilder, and Jildabug.......what names.

So I ate a couple of peppermint sticks and thought of Mama and Papa, not much money, but a house full of love.  Always a roaring fire, and plenty of hugs......I miss them so much tonight.

Saturday, December 20, 2014

Christmas Memories

I am so excited, there is a rumbling among the weather guys here that we might get snow flurries on Christmas Eve.......I can't help myself......I love snow at Christmas, even if it's only flurries.
It has been an interesting holiday so far, because of the bouts with meningitis, we have attended only a couple of holiday festivities.......I have learned the hard way, that stress and fatigue up the chances of one of those little bouts.

Jordan spent much of today with us, he was so excited he got three new fish this died yesterday, and this evening another one died.  He is so sad......he was so proud of his fish. I hope the last one hangs on.

I only have about 6 more cards to paint, and then I can start wrapping presents.  I really miss my mom at Christmas.  After my dad died, I always took her shopping, did her Christmas cards and wrapped her gifts......yes, it was double the work for me, but I would gladly do it all over again.
I think about the last Christmas with my mom and my dad......there are parts of it frozen in my brain, as if some part of me knew that a couple of weeks later, my dad would be gone.  That last Christmas, I needed a Christmas tree, and for some reason, Rick was working or out of town and my dad dug up a beautiful cedar tree and brought it to me. That was 23 years ago and that tree is a monster now.
I won't have it much longer, when I planted it, I placed it too near the power pole and I figure the power guys will cut it down this spring......but it is a is one of those that when you walk by, the smell of cedar fills your nostrils.

I hope you all are making beautiful Christmas memories, remember to breathe......and Peace to all.

Friday, December 19, 2014

Jordan and Ella

Jordan and his friend Ella spent the day........we made Christmas cookies, cupcakes, painted ornaments for their energy left a few hours ago.
Goodnight, Sweet dreams

Thursday, December 18, 2014

A Little Bout

A little bout of meningitis today, Rick had to pick me up at work, could not teach my classes........I am a little bummed tonight and very wiped out from the fever.  It will be better tomorrow.
Cold and damp the past couple of days, this feels like Christmas.

My friends Linda and Teri from work, both gave me angel ornaments today....they are so beautiful. I am a lucky woman. Teri made me an ice pack for the back of my head and neck from a condiment bag in the kitchen......that is a true friend.  Then she sat with me until Rick came to retrieve me......and then laughed when I stood up and we realized the bag had leaked and my hair was dripping wet. I was a mess!

The weekend before Christmas......time has moved so fast the past few weeks.......and I am getting more and more behind.  But the good news, we have a new hot water heater, no more cold showers.
My warm and cozy bed calls to me.
Goodnight Sweet dreams

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Peaceful Nigth

Winter sunsets here in Alabama are the most beautiful.  It has been a hectic day......but I stepped out on the deck this evening to see swirls of brilliant light shimmering through the trees in our back yard.   This is my most favorite time of day, between daylight and dark.  The tall pines and bare oaks and hickories stood proudly against the ribbons of color......pinks, lavenders, golds, peach and blue.  Life is good.

Wishing you all a peaceful night.

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Tuesday Night Musings

I have been painting Christmas cards for the past few's interesting, things that I once could do for hours on end.......well, now I paint awhile, rest awhile.  Tomorrow the first batch should be mailed.  Treatment was December 3, so far, slight bouts of meningitis....... so much milder than the past three years......there is hope.

Three years ago this week, life for me ( and Rick) changed, the call from the doctor, all the tests and then IVIG treatments started.  It has been a bumpy ride and many times I felt as though I were in  the throes of a hurricane.  Lots of tears, an occasional pity party, many questions and until a few weeks ago not many answers.......but I have pushed to maintain my semblance of  normal. I have told myself hundreds of times that it could be worse, and it could have been.  The big green chair changed my world forever.

Tonight is the first night of Hanukkah, I hope for those of you who light that first candle tonight that the light shines bright, that blessings come to you and yours........and for us all......Peace.

Monday, December 15, 2014

a thought provoking quote for tonight......

"We think that the point is to pass the test or overcome the problem, but the truth is that things don't really get solved. They come together and they fall apart, the they come together again and fall apart again.  The healing comes from letting there be room for all of this to happen: room for grief, for relief, for misery and for joy."   Pema Chodron

Sunday, December 14, 2014

The Christmas Spirit

I think the Christmas Spirit finds us when we least expect unique and wonderful ways.
This afternoon a few of our friends from our musical think tank came over......I sat and watched them, heard their laughter......and thought about the changes that had taken place in their lives this past year.  One has made it through cancer, one has gotten married, one has made major decisions about their career, others who were not there had big changes in their lives too.  This has been a year of changes for many of us.  But, knowing how everyone's year has been, and then hearing their voices, full of hope and joy.......the Christmas Spirit found my heart.

It has been a year of changes for me too........I have lost friends and family members, struggled with illness and its treatment.  But love and hope kept me going, honestly, I think the Christmas Spirit is always's just called different things at different times of the year.......but it is always about hope, always about love.

This year is winding down fast, just a few more days to Christmas and then New Years.  If The Christmas Spirit hasn't found you, it will soon.......just open your heart, your eyes and your ears.
Goodnight Sweet dreams.

Saturday, December 13, 2014

Old Habits

Caregiver.....I have been one since I was a small child.  How can that be you ask?  Before I ever started to school my mom would tell me it was my job to take care of my little brother Ricky......I took my job seriously.  As I grew older tween and early teen years ( before I could drive) if anyone in the family got sick and needed a caregiver, my mom volunteered me.  I now know, that was not necessarily a good thing, but for many many years I felt it was my personal responsibility to take care of my family and friends, and if for some reason I failed at that, well I shouldered the blame, fault, guilt, etc.

I still struggle with that need to care, to make sure all is well, and if do whatever I can to fix it......old habits are hard to break.  My mother did not turn me into a caregiver to punish me......I think she thought it was a great way to teach me kindness and caring.......little did she know how obsessive I would become about it, how I would worry and fret, how  as a grown woman I would feel responsible for my loved ones.

Even today I have struggled with the fixation of taking care, of trying to make it all better......I know logically how foolish and harmful it is for me.......yet, old habits are hard to break.  There are positive things that have come from this twisted personality made me a good teacher, a good friend, a good wife......I just have to remember I can't fix everything......old habits are hard to break.
I think it is good some times to bare one's soul, to let other see the weak link in your've seen mine tonight.......and remember, old habits are hard to break.

Friday, December 12, 2014

Fun Times

I did Christmas shopping this morning. Jordan helped me trim the tree this evening.
Can we say tired but happy?
Tomorrow we do his Charlie Brown tree and I paint times.
Goodnight Sweet dreams

Thursday, December 11, 2014


"It is a happy talent to know how to play."  - Ralph Waldo Emerson

We all have that talent as children, for most of us, adulthood robs us or erases it from our memory.  This holiday season, find your long lost!  Play with the kids, with a pet.......remember the joy and happiness of play.   Promise yourself, at least once a day for the next few weeks.......I will play......I will laugh out loud. 

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Common Sense for Chronic Illness

I read an article in Healthy Holistic Living today about dealing with chronic illness.  I loved the ten common sense points so I am sharing them with you tonight.  Healthy Holistic Living is an on line magazine, check it out sometime.

1. Tend to your spirit
2. Speak your mind
3.Take things one hour at a time
4. Laugh
5. Avoid Stress
6. Remember the important people in your life
7. Proper Nutrition
8. Exercise
9. Take an active roll in your health care
10. Educate yourself

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

I Am Grateful

Classes today were exceptional.......sometimes the groups just amaze me.  The search for peace and joy in their personal lives have led many of them straight to the bottom.......with addictions, one tends to look for that joy and peace through alcohol, sex and or/drugs.  I love seeing their faces after their first yoga class or when they meditate and find that place of peace.

The moon is magnificent tonight, the telescope needs a little work, so Jordan will come over tomorrow night for his private viewing of the night sky.  Part of his Christmas present is a book called Stars that I ordered from National Geographic, he is going to love it.

So that is how my day has been, yoga and meditation and looking at the night sky as I drove home.
The cherry on top.......Taz was ready to cuddle tonight, and Calliou greeted me before I could get out of the car.  I also saw some beautiful Christmas decorations on the way home.
It has been a good day.......I am grateful.
Goodnight, Sweet dreams

Monday, December 8, 2014

Moon Blessings

I finally saw the moon tonight, and it is a beauty.  If Jordan were not asleep right now, we would be gazing at the moon and stars with the telescope.  Tonight I am so proud of him, my heart could just burst.......Santa came to his school today.  When it came Jordan's time to tell Santa what he wanted for Christmas, it was only a couple of things.......Santa asked him if he was sure that was all he wanted........Jordan told him yes, that he knew Santa had to give a lot of other kids toys because their parents couldn't afford to buy them much.  I wish we could all have the kind hearts that this six year old has.

As this cold winter's moon shines down on all of us tonight, I pray blessings of peace and joy for us all.  May its silvery light fill our paths with the light of love.
Goodnight, Sweet dreams

Sunday, December 7, 2014

Holiday Stress

That moon is just not cooperating........keeps hiding behind the clouds, even tonight.......maybe tomorrow night Jordan and I can get the telescope out.  This has been the elusive moon.

My siblings and I had our annual Christmas lunch today.  No gifts, no kids.......just siblings and spouses, food and laughter.  My sister Pat hosts it at her house and it is always a good time.

I hope that holiday stress has not reared its ugly face toward any of you.  When I think of all the times in the past that stress robbed me of holiday cheer, I am so embarrassed and sad.  Each time I invite nieces and nephews to our house, I always remind them if the visit causes any stress, to leave off my invite.......never ever never, do I want anyone to stress over visiting our home during the holidays.
I think of all the years and holidays of rushing from place to place, and honestly never getting to savor the moments........those are the things that I wish I could change.

So tonight, if I can help you or offer you any advice about transformation of holiday stress, it is this..... follow your heart, don't let anyone bully or push you into the craziness.......pace yourself......make memories, don't create blurs.........quality time, not perfection, not trying to please really is about peace and joy......not commercial perfection.  Take some moments, turn off the lights, look at the tree, listen to the music or the silence......make some personal holiday traditions  and don't feel guilty because you over indulged......don't forget the mistletoe.

Saturday, December 6, 2014

Busy Saturday

We spent the day at an IDF seminar ( Immune Deficiency Foundation).  Contacting this foundation has made a big difference in my life and disease and treatment.  If you or a family member has ( like me) suffered  100's of infections ( the majority of mine, lung) please contact IDF and consider getting tested for Primary Immune Deficiency.  It is a rare disease, only about 250,000 in the US, but there really is help through IDF.

There is a full moon tonight, and just like last month's.......cloudy skies.  I love full moons and so does Jordan, our six year old great nephew.  He and I talked about the full moon last night and how much we loved seeing it.  Our plans were tonight, we'd get the telescope out and look at the cold winter moon........maybe tomorrow night.

Three inches of rain fell last night bringing much cooler temperatures, thank goodness.  It had been in the 70's the past few days.  For me, it's just not Christmas if I can't wear my sweaters and boots.....of course, I am always cold, so I wear them anyway.......but I love the feel of cold air against my face.
Hoping that we can get our tree this week.  We get  a living tree ( our farm is covered in all those that we have planted the past 30 years).  I think I have my design worked out for our Christmas cards that I paint every year.

So that is how my Saturday has been.......wishing you all a Sunday filled with peace.
Goodnight Sweet dreams

Friday, December 5, 2014


a quote for tonight from one of my favorite yoga teachers

"Remember to give your attention to what is worthy of it."
- judith lasater

Thursday, December 4, 2014

Paying The Price

Feeling good, feeling the flow of energy as it moves through your body is something we take for granted......when it is no longer there, we are devastated and we want to be as we  were before.
Understanding that our bodies changed, that our lives change, that our energy changes is not a lesson any of us wants......but it happens.

We can fight it, get angry, have a pity party and live our lives full of remorse in the glory of yesterday. ......or we can work with what we have.  I had a great day this morning, my energy level was incredible, by 3:00pm meningitis had found its way into my head again.  I do the meds, hit the couch, ice pack on head, drink water and gator aide and wait to feel better.  In a couple hours the symptoms subside and I can function.  

Saying all of that to say this.......if you are to have happiness, joy and have to learn to go with the flow of life.  I have learned ( kicking and screaming, crying, etc.) sometimes you just put your big girl panties on, suck it up, deal with it, appreciate the good and learn from the bad.
Yep, I learned from the bad this afternoon......I overdid it when I felt so good this morning, treatment was yesterday, I should have rested......I paid the price.

Goodnight, Sweet dreams

Wednesday, December 3, 2014


Treatment #36........three years, measured out  month by month......the big green chairs were full today, but the holiday spirit refused to let any sad faces enter that room.  All those people, and no one turned the tv on......a miracle!  My drip, thick and bubbly as always, was a constant source of attention today, those tiny bubbles set the beeper off about every 30-45 minutes......why sometimes, but not every time, who knows?

My friend Louis was there in all his glory, he calls me the queen of the infusion room......but I promise, it is his court and his audience.  His kindness and smile touch every one who comes in that room.......he speaks to each person, always giving hope and encouragement.   I have learned so much from him. I see in him the true meaning of kindness, a real humanity.

All three of our nurses were so busy, but I noticed one, whose eyes were not as  sparkling as usual.....I worried that she might be sick, but as we talked, I learned her father-in-law had passed in the early morning hours........but yet, there she was, caring for all of us. Those nurses, they are amazing in their  dedication and caring.

The ebb and flow of the patients, the chatter, the constant buzz of the pumps......every person hooked to some sort of drip, such a surreal scene has become a normal day for me. It has become as much a part of my life, as going to the grocery store......or teaching a class....or performing on stage. It has changed me, in many ways......and I hope for the better.  How can you sit in those big green chairs and not become a better person?

It has been a long tiring body is ready for my pillow, my bed.
Goodnight, Sweet dreams

Tuesday, December 2, 2014


Back at class today, I have missed teaching these past few days.  It is hard not to be angry when illness keeps you from doing what you love.  The meningitis hit last Tuesday, the fever finally broke last I felt like Jilda again.  Treatment tomorrow......the circle begins all over.

Driving home tonight I kept looking up at the sky, the half moon at times was encircled by wispy clouds and at times hidden by them.  Nights like tonight confirm my belief in see a sky so beautiful, makes me believe that anything can happen.

Wishing you all a Wednesday full of hope, may you laugh out loud.

Monday, December 1, 2014

December 1

December 1.......the last month of 2014

December 1.......Happy Birthday to our moms, may they RIP

December 1.....Christmas decorations in the neighborhood

December to paint

December 1.....treatment #36

December 1.....9 years at my current job

December 1......Jordan and I hunt a Charlie Brown tree, he decorates it with anything he chooses

December 1.....Christmas cookies to bake, nieces and nephews cover them with sugar

December 1.....I bought a new red sweater

December 1.....a fresh living tree, decorate now, plant after New Years

December 1.....holidays are joyful and sad, I miss my parents and big brother

December 1.....wouldn't it be wonderful if just one Christmas, you saw everyone you love

December Christmas wish......Peace on Earth, Good Will To All Men.

Sunday, November 30, 2014

Christmas Roses

December and March are huge birthday months for our families.  This week both of our moms would have celebrated their birthdays.  Rick's sister's birthday is this month,  a couple of  nieces, a great niece, a nephew, a good friend's.......see what I mean, birthdays o'plenty.

Since our moms have died, I try to always place flowers on their graves in December, in remembrance of their birthdays as well as Christmas.  Yesterday we bought red silk roses, baby's breath and red plaid ribbon.......I arranged their flowers last night, and placed them on their graves today.  I suppose to some it would seem silly, that gesture of silk flowers......but it is the only thing I can do now for our moms.......a bouquet of Christmas roses.

I have dreamed about my mom and dad a couple of times this week.......the dreams were so real and vivid.......I heard their voices, saw their faces.  I thought that I was with them.  I think it is because I have been sick this week......Rick is a great nurse.....but I miss the nurturing of my mom and dad.

Tomorrow is the first day of December, this week is treatment #36.  Tonight I pray blessings of peace, joy and good health for you all.

Saturday, November 29, 2014

Recipe for Life

Appreciation for the good days, gratitude for the good days.........meditation for every day.......and tolerance for the difficult days.  Pity parties are allowed, but there is a time limit.  Imagination with a dose of realization helps.  The love of friends and family and pets is a daily need......wants must change from day to day.  Being outdoors is a necessity.....a piece of dark chocolate is a pleasure.
Cool water, fresh food, drama allowed.  Do what you love, at least once a day.
Don't be afraid to live......believe in yourself.  One breath at a time, one day at a with all your heart, even when it hurts.  Tears, just like laughter, heal......laugh out loud daily....cry when you need to. A hug, a smile........can change your world and someone else's.
This my friends is my personal recipe for life.....feel free to throw in a pinch of this and that.
Goodnight, Sweet dreams

Friday, November 28, 2014


a quote for you all this Friday night......

"In the middle of every difficulty lies opportunity."  - Albert Einstein

Thursday, November 27, 2014

I Am Grateful

Today was just what I needed.......friends, family, food and laughter.  It has been a tough week, actually I have not worked because of the meningitis, but am so much better today.
My heart overflows with gratitude tonight.  I hope you all felt as much love and joy as I did today.
Goodnight, Sweet dreams

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Thank You

"If you only say one prayer in a day, make it "Thank You".  - Rumi

I remind my classes almost every day, without gratitude, there is no joy.  I often hear complaints from those around me about their lives, but I can promise you matter how bad you think your story is, there is one which is worse.  It is so easy to see the bad and close our eyes to the good......and there is good all around us.

Tomorrow is very most favorite holiday.....I love this day, because there are no expectations of gifts......just food and fellowship.....( and laughter if you are at our house).   I hope that you live in the moment tomorrow, that you enjoy your meal, and the fellowship of your friends and family.  If you go shopping, play nice with the other shoppers and those who are working.....and remember, once upon a time......this was a holiday, not a shopping day.

Thank you all, for spending a few minutes of your time, reading my blog.  I appreciate it.


Tuesday, November 25, 2014


What I have called the "dreaded serum sickness" and what has now been defined by the new doc as aseptic meningitis hit about 3:30 this morning, it has been a bear.  So, now I have missed two days of work am hoping like heck I get to go tomorrow.  This is not how I had my Thanksgiving week planned......take a breath, a nap and work through it.  Last year the stuff hit me on Thanksgiving morning, maybe it has run it's course for this week.  Doesn't matter, life goes on, even when I am on the couch.  And I am much better tonight.  Plans are always subject to change.....that is life.

Tomorrow is hump day......let's hope it is a tiny hump and we all skip right through it.
goodnight, sweet dreams

Monday, November 24, 2014


It went well with the new doctor today......he confirmed the diagnosis, explained the aseptic meningitis I am having, was kind and compassionate, spent a good two and a half hours with me, and accepted me as a part of his study.  I hope and pray that as a part of this study I help someone else.
Yes, treatments will continue......#36 takes place next week.

My transformation today........I received answers and hope......this transformation for me was major.
I hope your Monday brought you answers and hope today, if it did......remember to be grateful....if not, find something to be grateful for anyway.
Goodnight, Sweet dreams

Sunday, November 23, 2014

Sunday Night

I would be the first to admit I live a strange life........last Sunday night, we were on stage in Muscle Shoals performing......tonight, I have painted the guest bedroom.
I have also spent the past hour filling out paper work for my doctor's visit tomorrow.  This is a new doc, a research doctor actually who is an immunologist, pulmonary and rheumatoid specialist.
I have waited months to see him, I am excited and a little apprehensive.

I do know this, just his suggestions in the past couple of months have made a major difference in my life.  For the first time since treatments began, I worked a whole month without having to take time off for sickness.

Thanksgiving week........I try to make every day one of gratitude, and Thanksgiving is one of my most favorite holidays.  I am so sorry that it is being turned into a shopping event.  I spent 25 years in the retail industry, my belief is this.......if every Thanksgiving day/Black Friday shopper had to work retail those days......I bet it would all come to an end fast.

I hope your Monday is traffic, no stress, no worry.......actually, I hope that for the whole week.

Saturday, November 22, 2014

What If

What If

What if our religion was each other?
If our practice was our life?
If prayer was our words?
What if the temple was the Earth?
If forests were our church?
If holy water- the rivers, lakes and oceans?
What if meditation was our relationships?
If the Teacher was life?
If wisdom was self-knowledge?
If love was the center of our being?

a poem by Ganga White

Friday, November 21, 2014

Collie Grunts

Spent the day buying food for our Thanksgiving lunch.  Saw some old friends and enjoyed an incredible blue sky and warm sunshine.  Will be in the 70's by Sunday and now the weather guys are saying we may have a few snow flurries on Thanksgiving, Alabama weather, gotta love it.

Calliou just came in to say hello, he has been outside and smells of woodsy smoke.  His fur is so soft, he is like a 90 pound teddy bear......he thinks he is the size of Taz, who weighs about 6 pounds.  He is forever wanting to sit in my lap.  He doesn't want me on the computer, he wants to play......he is now speaking in Collie grunts.

I think, Calliou is winning this battle tonight, time to pet him and get ready for bed.  Wishing you all a Saturday that is fun and worry free.  Calliou has grunted in agreement.
Goodnight, Sweet dreams

Thursday, November 20, 2014


Success for me depends on what I am doing at the time.......if it is music, success is singing the song and having someone come up afterwards and tell me how much that moment meant to them.  Maybe it transported them to a memory or place, or just resonated with them, that is one success for me. That's why I write songs and sing.

Teaching success varies was an extremely successful day.  I had students who are new this week, with PTSD.......when I start savasana or relaxation at the end of class I always watch my students, making sure they are comfortable.  For the past couple of days, I knew these guys were struggling, white knuckled struggling, every muscle in their body tense.  Today, I watched as the  knuckles unwhitened,  muscles softened, breath slowed........they were relaxed......SUCCESS!  As they left my room, there were smiles and many thanks.  This is why I teach.

When I was younger, I thought success would songs on the radio, being famous, etc.
It is interesting how time changes everything, how values change, what becomes important.
Sunday night, I was a very successful singer/, I was a very successful yoga teacher.

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Nutrition, Health and Lifestyle

Class is completed,  certificate earned ( with distinction) and ready for the next one.  I had forgotten how much I loved to learn and study.  Though I do get a little crazy with tests.  But I have been reading about health and nutrition for over 40 years and the thing that thrills me the most, my niece Samantha ( Jordan's mom) has acquired that interest also.

I have always known it in my gut, but as the years have gone by, the more I have studied and learned,  I found out that if we want the best health we can have.......we have to participate, we have to often take matters into our own hands, and figure out what is best for us.  We cannot rely on others to have our best interests at heart.  ( in life, health, career or anything else)  Blind trust in the medical profession does not get you the best care.

My transformation, fueled by a chronic illness, has been one of hard work, persistent digging, always questioning, and searching for answers.  We can not be satisfied with the status quo, not when it comes to our health, nutrition and lifestyle.  Don't be afraid to question, and never let someone rob you of your hope.  It ain't over until the last breath is drawn.  I still believe that we can create more than one blue zone in this country.

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Sacred Space

" Your sacred space is where you can find yourself again and again."  - Joseph Campbell

I often do a meditation at the end of my classes where I talk about finding your space, a place where you feel peaceful and safe.  It is yours alone, no one else can go there.  When the world is spinning out of control, you can find yourself in your sacred place, you can find peace, and direction and answers there as well.  It is a simple place to find, you close your eyes, focus on your breath and think of a place where you feel safe and peaceful.  It can be a real place or one you dream of,but it is yours alone and the authentic you is always there, waiting for you.

The holidays are upon us,  I am already seeing the stress on faces and hearing it in voices.  It is easy to lose yourself in the maddening crowd and the push to overspend, over eat, over drink, over work and over do everything else that we do to create a holiday experience that exists mostly in our imaginations.  Before you tumble down the slide of fake snow and forced gaiety, find five minutes.......( even if you find them in the bathroom) close your eyes, breathe slowly, and imagine being alone in the most peaceful place in the world.  Let your pulse slow, your breathing become even, and notice all the details of your sacred place.......the colors, the sounds, the smells, the textures of everything around is your place, your space and when your find yourself getting lost......go there.

Monday, November 17, 2014

Birrrrrh, It's Cold

A polar blast has hit today, record lows tonight and tomorrow. Weather guys are saying we will break a hundred year old is chilly willy.
I hope where ever you are tonight, you stay warm and cozy.
I am still a little tired from the gig and then teaching today.
Goodnight, Sweet dreams

Sunday, November 16, 2014

A Good Gig

An ol' cold rainy day.......any other time, it would have been the perfect day to stay home, sit in front of the fireplace and drink hot cider and play with the dogs.  But today was a road day, a gig had been booked for some time......a good gig, in a musician's  mecca......Muscle Shoals.  We had a great time, our host, Max was an awesome singer/songwriter, an audience eager to hear our songs was the icing on the cake.

I had worried after yesterday, that the serum sickness might try to rob me of this gig.........thankfully it did not.  We had a did good, as our friend John use to say, we had fun as our friend Stevie use to advise.......but now, time to get some rest and listen to the rain.

Goodnight, Sweet dreams

Saturday, November 15, 2014


Humor.....some days it is the only thing that gets you through with a chronic illness.  The serum sickness hit out of the blue this morning on the way to the grocery store.  As sick as I was, I couldn't help but many people do you know who carry a barf bag in their purse, yoga bag, car or husband's lap top case?

I am better tonight, but serum sickness is so sneaky, hits out of the blue, when you least expect it.
We have a wonderful gig tomorrow night.  We will be playing the Shoals Songwriter's in the Round, at Muscle Shoals.  This is our first gig in the Shoals area, the musical history of the Shoals is so's like playing Carnegie Hall!

Hope your Saturday has been a good one.....may your Sunday bring peace, no worries, and great joy.
Goodnight, Sweet dreams

Friday, November 14, 2014

Stories to Tell

We visited our friends Charlie and Yvonne today........they are older and Charlie's health is not great, but they are a joy to spend time with.  Charlie was a press secretary for a congressman for many years.  Yes, he does have some stories and none of them are boring.  Yvonne is charming and witty and they still host a live local tv show.  I sat and listened to them today and marveled at the life they have shared.  If Rick and I make it to our 80's I hope that we are still that vibrant and interesting.

On one of our visits awhile back, Yvonne gave me a gold bangle bracelet that Charlie had given her when they were in DC.  It is one of my most treasured possessions, I wear it often.  I think of her and Charlie and what their lives must have been like in their younger days .  As we were leaving today, Charlie said something so poignant......he was telling us how much they loved our visits......and then his voice changed.......he told us that one of the things about growing older, that people did not visit you as they did when you were younger.  There was such a wistfulness in his voice.

It is sad that our culture does not celebrate age and the wisdom and knowledge that comes with it.
Charlie and Yvonne are two of the most engaging people I have ever met.  I love spending time with them.  I learn something every time I am around them.  If you are reading this tonight and you avoid
spending time with those who are older, shame on you.  Their lives, their experience and passions are vital and important and you my friend, are missing out on so very much.  Everyone has a story, and those who have lived a long life.......have many stories to tell.

Thursday, November 13, 2014


Lucy said it best.......

" I'd rather regret the things I've done, than regret the things I haven't done."    - Lucille Ball

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Hump Day

Yesterday it was 78 degrees here with blue skies and it was in the 40's, cloudy, windy and cold......the s word is being discussed by the weather guys for Sunday and Monday.  Just flurries, but for Alabama in is a big deal. We skipped most of fall and dove head first into winter.

I am getting excited about Thanksgiving.......just like last year, I am cooking lunch for friends who have no place to go, for family members who want to come.  We had such a good time last year, even though the serum sickness hit and my niece Jayna had to come and help me cook.  Hopefully that part will not recur......keeping my fingers crossed.

We have a really good gig this weekend, The Shoals Songwriter's Showcase on Sunday night and yes, it is in Muscle Shoals.  We have been practicing like crazy.

I don't teach on Wednesdays.  It's my day to let my body rest, play catch up on house duties and just hang.  It is the perfect hump day.  Where did this week go?  I hope your hump day was as good as mine.  Enjoy your Thursday......remember to do something kind for yourself and someone else.
Goodnight, Sweet dreams

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

I Cry

I tear up often on Veteran's Day.......I cry for my dad, who could not speak about WWII at all, I cry for all those Veterans through the years who left families and friends to serve their country.
I cry for those who didn't make it home and for their families.
I cry for those who did come home, for the memories they can't erase, the guilt they carry,the nights they don't sleep and the pain that will be with them forever.
I cry because no matter how hard I try, and what I do, there are some that I can't  help.....that no one can help.......
I cry because the words Thank You seem so small and insignificant to someone who is willing to give their life for me and this country..........yet no other words come close.

So tonight, if you are a Veteran or are still serving.......Thank You

Monday, November 10, 2014

A Gratitude Quote

A quote for this Monday night

"Do not spoil what you have by desiring what you have not, remember that what you now have was once among the things you only hoped for."   - Epicurus

Sunday, November 9, 2014

Sunday Night Ramble

We watched  the Walter Mitty movie tonight with Ben Stiller.......I know, it has been around awhile, but I have never been a big Ben Stiller fan and well, you know how that goes.  For some reason it seemed like the movie to watch glad we did.  It was the best thing I have ever seen Ben Stiller do, a wonderful adaptation of the story......a really beautiful funny film.  Shawn Penn as a Life photographer was awesome.

I haven't taught a class since Tuesday, so glad to be going back to work tomorrow. My energy is back to normal today, a few moments of serum sickness, but so far nothing bad.  Keeping my fingers crossed.

Already the second week of November,  last week as I drove home from work I saw houses already decorated for Christmas........I'm thinking did we do away with Thanksgiving?  and radio stations playing Christmas music......this is beginning to feel like a Twilight movie, jumping from Halloween to Christmas.  I suppose there is just not that much money to be made on turkey and the fixin's.
I am sure there is a hefty profit in Halloween costumes and candy and decorations and then of course, Christmas brings a spending frenzy.  It seems the only emphasis on Thanksgiving anymore, is the Black Friday that follows it.  How sad is that.

Wow, I fell down the rabbit hole......but Christmas decorations the first of November tend to push my buttons.

Wishing you all a happy work week, enjoy your Monday.....may the traffic gods be with you.

Saturday, November 8, 2014

Blue Zone

Cabin fever hit this morning........I had not left the house since coming back from treatment on Wednesday.  We did an early morning trip to grocery store......then it was nap time.
The highlight of my day........we picked a few of the remaining apples off the big tree and I made an apple pie this evening.  Today, my life in the fast lane would have made a turtle laugh.

I am reading the book, The Blue Zones by National Geographic writer, Dan Buettner.  Pretty interesting stuff, about the areas of the world where people live the longest and are healthy.  Since my philosophy is quality of life, not quantity, this book has been most interesting.  There is a Blue Zone in California, Costa Rica,Sardinia, and of course the most famous one, Okinawa.  There are several common threads in these communities, the people are active, eat lots of fruits and vegetables,nuts, and beans, drink lots of water, have a strong sense of family and community, spend time outdoors, limited intake of meat, little or no processed food.

It is an easy interesting read.....if you are interested in your health it makes sense to adopt these habits that are found in the "blue zones."  There is nothing complicated about the lifestyle of these people, actually much of it comes down to common sense and moderation.  Living to be 100, still active, and in good health is appealing, and it can be done.  Wouldn't it be great if every state in our country had a blue zone?

Friday, November 7, 2014

A Gift of Love

Transformation comes in surprising ways......yesterday was difficult.... the day after treatment, physically and mentally out of sync.  I call those days lost.......and sometimes it  makes me angry at myself that  for the past three years I have experienced so many of them.

Around 4:30 yesterday afternoon the phone rang, I recognized the number as a local florist in Sumiton.  The sweet young woman calling, said  they had a delivery for me and asked if I would be home for awhile.......about an hour later, a knock on the door and there was the most beautiful vase of flowers. I could not imagine who had sent them and quickly took a  look at the card.

When I read the card, I cried.........some of my students at work had sent them. I could not believe they sent me flowers......I can't remember the last time a florist brought flowers to my door......
So the pity party ended, and I reminded myself of how much I had to be grateful for.......I will never forget their kindness and love.

Thursday, November 6, 2014

November Moon

A full moon tonight.....I often write about the beauty of a full moon, there is nothing like it.
But I also love the fact that knowing  the full moon shines on all of us, there is a connection, much bigger than the blogging world.  We are all illuminated by the light of the moon, adorned by its brilliance and humbled by its majesty.  I love to think about the power the moon has, its pull on earth and its tides.  I truly understand how tribes worshiped the moon, stars and sun........the power of light and darkness, of warmth and cold.

So where ever you are tonight, enjoy the beauty and magic of the moon.....may we never take its light for granted.
Goodnight, Sweet dreams

Wednesday, November 5, 2014


Treatment #35 today........the infusion room was not so busy today and for the first time in many months, there seemed to be no sadness nor tears.  All day you could hear chatter and laughter, even the nurses seemed to be less stressed.  As always, my friend Louis was there speaking to everyone in the room......he calls me the queen of the infusion room, but trust me, he holds court and it is his kingdom the moment he walks in.  I always sit in the same big green chair, he tells everyone it is my throne.

The nurses talked about how long they had been at the infusion center, one has been there since before her son was born ( and has known Louis the whole time).  Her son is a freshman at Auburn University now.  There are bonds and friendships formed by those drips and big green chairs, I know.....the nurses seem like family now.

A full moon tomorrow night, and there was a ring around it last night when I drove home from work.
I have said it before, but there is just something special about the night sky in the fall and winter and the sunsets are much more colorful.  This weekend we will do a gratitude ceremony, there is much to be grateful for at the Watson house.

I am weak and shaky tonight, the bed is calling my name......
Goodnight, Sweet dreams

Tuesday, November 4, 2014


What a difference twenty four hours can make.  Yesterday morning I had gotten up, went through my morning routine and as I was making myself a sandwich for lunch, the serum sickness hit.  Rick was in Birmingham, my brother Ricky (  who lives next door) was at work, I was home alone. I took my meds and thought I will be fine.....but it progressed, so I took more meds.  I called Rick just to let him know I was sick and ask that he call my workplace and let them know I couldn't make it.

Lying on the sofa, ice pack at the back of my head, waiting for the nausea meds to work......hope deserted me.  Rarely in my life, have I ever lost hope but I did yesterday. I lay on the sofa, Taz at my feet, Calliou on the floor beside me......and sobbed.

Finally the meds kicked in, and I slept for a few 7:00 last night I was able to teach my community class.  I so glad I made it......I had a packed house, students that had not been in a while, and an old friend showed up.  I felt their love and concern.

This morning, I told myself it was a new day and that no matter what, I had to go on. Just before lunch, my phone was the call that I had been waiting for......a doctor who specializes in my disease had kept me on his waiting list for a couple of months, his nurse called to tell me he could see me in February......I swallowed hard and expressed my gratitude for the appointment and reminded her that if any cancellations came up to please call me.  In about thirty minutes the phone rang was the nurse......someone had just called and cancelled their appointment for November 24, because it was Thanksgiving week.  She asked if I wanted it.......I choked up and told her that if he wanted me to come Thanksgiving day I would.

Twenty four hours after losing hope.......I found it again.  I have expressed my gratitude over and over today to anyone who would listen.  So that was my transformation......tonight if you have lost your hope, please don't give's waiting for you, just around the corner. Tomorrow is treatment day and for the first time in a couple of years, I don't dread it.......I have hope.

Monday, November 3, 2014

The Intuitive Mind

“The intuitive mind is a sacred gift and the rational mind is a faithful servant. We have created a society that honors the servant and has forgotten the gift.” ~ Albert Einstein

Sunday, November 2, 2014

Good Memories

The flannel sheets went on the bed today........I can't wait to snuggle in tonight.  This morning I could smell the smoke in the firepit from our fire last really is autumn.  This weekend has been like so many others......I pick and choose where my energy goes. Yesterday, we did a weenie roast and hayride for Jordan and our other great nieces and nephews.  Ten kids, 12 and under.......the backyard was an amazing place, full of activity and laughter.  They all arrived around 3:00pm, my energy left around 5:00pm, and I am still looking for it today.  But, it was quite a bit of fun.

I love the fact that kids want to come to our house.....and even better, they don't want to leave.  I learned this art from my parents, our house was the house that all my friends wanted to come to.
My friend, Debbie told me, she remembers coming to my parent's house when we were in high school during the Christmas mom and I were making candy.   Debbie told me, she had never felt so much love.  One of Jordan's class mates and her mom came yesterday......her mom asked if it was a birthday party or something special.  I laughed and told her, we did things like this reason, just food and fun.

I have come to realize that when I am gone, all that will be left of me are the memories that others carry in their hearts........when it is time for me to go, I want to leave good memories......the kind that my family and friends will hold in their hearts forever.
Goodnight, Sweet dreams

Saturday, November 1, 2014

November 1

November 1......treatment  #35 this coming week

November 1.......fall came in with a vengeance, today was cold, but beautiful

November 1..... Thanksgiving, I find it a much easier holiday than Christmas......I mean, what could be better, a big meal with family and friends

November 1......two months left in 2014

November in the firepit

November spiced cider

November 1....reminds me to be grateful every day, not just Thanksgiving

November 1.....I can't believe radio stations are playing Christmas carols

November 1.....finally going back to real time, thank goodness it will be daylight when I get out of bed tomorrow

November 1.....this week is the ninth anniversary of my mom's death, sometimes it seems like yesterday, sometimes an eternity

November 1......frost and freezing temps, bring on the snow please

November 1....sitting in front of fireplace, listening to music, drinking morning coffee

November 1.....the sunsets are breath-taking, the night sky poetic

Friday, October 31, 2014

You Never Know

I always say that whoever needs yoga shows up for class.  That's how it went today.......a full class for the first round, one student for the second.  But that one student needed the class as much as all of those in the first.

It's funny how yoga is a mirror to my life sometimes........that one student needed the class today......well, I got a card from a young friend today, actually I would claim this young woman for a daughter if I could.  Her card made me cry, it warmed my heart, touched my spirit and gave me hope.
Pretty much the way the class did that one student today.

I have said it before, but it warrants a second or more reminder......if you feel the need to contact a friend, send a note, a card, an e-mail or it.  Those little gestures mean more than you will ever know.  That little card that came in my mail today came at a low point, I needed to hear every word that my friend Laken wrote.  It changed my whole day.  Many times we all get busy,
we think of someone......but we never follow through.  Next time, take that five might change someone's might change their life, you never know.

Thursday, October 30, 2014

October 30

October 30........tomorrow, I hope all your goblins are cute, that you get lots of treats, no tricks, and that all the scary stuff just disappears!  Remember Halloween candy is just like Valentine's calories.


Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Use Wisely

Yesterday I saw my pulmonary doc, today Rick had a couple of doctor's visits.  As I sat in the waiting room waiting for him, I noticed a gentleman younger than Rick and me, restless and pacing.
I ask if everything was ok, he smiled and said I can't stand to wait, I have no patience.
I smiled back, told him I understood, that up until a few years ago I had no patience either........but  I said, all of that changed with one diagnosis, one doctor's visit, one round of IVIG which turned into three years of treatment and will continue for the rest of my life.

He looked at me and shook his head, but you look so healthy he said.  I smiled back, said thanks and said that's how it happens you know, in the blink of an eye life changes......and I learned to be patient.
He grinned rather sheepishly, it seems his wife was getting an eye exam for a possible surgery. Neither one had any issues with their health and this was unsettling .  About that time, she walked out to the waiting room, he looked at me as they were leaving, grinning and said I might be learning some patience.

Patience is difficult, but yoga prepared my journey to the land of patience and chronic illness.  Age probably helped me along the way also.  Sitting in a doctor's or hospital waiting room is agony, I agree, but sooner or later we all end up there.  We can agonize, fuss and pace or we can take some breaths, appreciate the time we have to sit and reflect, or meet someone new, read a book, knit,
listen to music on headphones, or sometimes I just journal.  Time is precious no matter where it is spent, don't waste it, don't wish it away.......use it wisely.

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

I'm Back

I had a bout with the dreaded serum sickness last night, so sorry about not posting.  I had sat down to write and within seconds, was very ill.  Some days my transformation is just dealing with the unexpected illness and side effects from IVIG.  Thankfully tonight has been much better....I am back.

It has been in the 80's for the past few days, fall did a quick visit here in Alabama and then quickly decided to visit some other place.  The weather guys swear she is coming back this weekend.......we shall see.

This is another week at work where there are goodbyes and hellos being said.  New students in class, full of fear and confusion, others are leaving full of fear and excitement.  Each of my work days is a roller coaster of emotions.  I see transformations in many different ways working at an addiction center.  Some are heart breaking, when divorce papers are served or someone loses their job while they are trying to get their life back on track. But, often I see smiles on faces that haven't smiled for a long time......I see the rosy glow of health and a sparkle appear in the eyes and a spring in steps that were slow and heavy when we first met.

Family and friends often ask why I continue to work when I am often so is simple, I believe that what I do, what I teach helps......not everyone, sometimes no one.....but there are those that get what I teach, and it is life changing for them. That is why I work, why I teach, on those days that are brutal for me.  But I also have learned to slow down and that life changes, the path changes and there will be a time when my path takes a turn.  I pray for the wisdom to know when to take the different path.

Tomorrow is hump day, Friday will be here before you know it.........I LOVE HALLOWEEN!

Sunday, October 26, 2014


My nutrition and lifestyle class today was a bear, over four hours of video, and then homework and test.......I had to keep an activity journal this week, here's how I stack up for the week:
110  minutes of aerobic activity ( 40 minutes shy of what is recommended)  90 minutes of resistance training, 90 minutes of flexibility and 210 minutes of neuromotor work.  Yep, that is my average week, so to up my aerobic activity, I will increase walk time and nordic track time.

In two weeks, I will get my certification in nutrition/healthy lifestyle from Vanderbilt.  Not sure what I will do with it, but I have learned a great deal, realized I already knew a great deal......I am ready for the next round!

One thing I can tell you, as we age, nutrition and movement are the big keys for good health. Our moms were  right, LOTS of fruits and veggies will make us strong and will water, fresh air, sunshine and that dreaded word.....exercise. ( moderate, 30 minutes a day, 5 days a week)

Here's to a brand new week, don't take your health for granted, do something good for yourself every day.

Saturday, October 25, 2014


" I would like for my life to be a statement of love and compassion- and where it isn't, that's where my work lies."  - Ram Dass

This quote spoke volumes to me today, honestly there are many times I avoid the places where my work lies.......but deep in my heart I know where they are.....I know, I'm lazy.  

Wishing you a Sunday of peace, filled with compassion and love.

Friday, October 24, 2014

Do What You Love

Life is at it's best when you do what you love...........we wrote a song titled, "Do What You Love" and it is how we try to live our lives.  Tonight, we did what we both love to do.......played music.
Local Color in Springville, Al is one our most favorite venues, Merle and Gary, the owners are true supporters of local musicians and artists, plus Gary is a great chef.

We had a great time with our friend Skip Cochran, playing our songs, telling our stories.  But it is late, the gear is unloaded ( I am also a great roadie) and we are tired. I hope your Friday night has been as much fun as ours.

Goodnight, Sweet dreams

Thursday, October 23, 2014


Skeptics.......every day I have them walk in my class, sure that when they leave they can say I told you so.  Many of them are in our trauma group or chronic pain group and they just can't imagine that yoga  could  help them in any way.

Monday, I had two that came.......they have spread the word.  Today, I had another one who came because his friends who came on Monday, raved about the class.  I just have to smile.  One of the new guys asked me Tuesday what type of yoga I taught.......I told him, "Jilda" yoga.  It is true, when I began teaching at an addiction center, I realized that I had to fine tune the classes for our population.

I searched out, yoga training classes that would be most beneficial to our patients, I studied breath work, meditation, somatic movement,  and now nutrition........I studied yoga for PTSD ( Yoga Warriors), my intent was to become the best teacher I could be for our program.

It has paid off, all the "skeptics" who came this week left smiling, vowing to come back for every class.  I remind them that when they go home, yoga classes will be different, but if they search and are honest about their intentions, they will find a teacher and class that they meets their needs.
My students told me today that they had told one of the doctors that I deserved a raise......I laughed,
they all know how much I love teaching......I told them I appreciated their thoughts, but I doubt if they helped to secure a raise for me.

This has been a most interesting week, full of good things......yet also full of stress.......we have a fun gig tomorrow night, looking forward to it.  I hope your Friday is full of good things and good news.

Wednesday, October 22, 2014


A very long exhausting day.......but, my brother got a good report and came home this sister is in a lot of pain and nausea, but her surgery went well.  Thank you all for your love, and prayers.  I swear, if I had ran a marathon, I would not be more fatigued........hospitals are like air travel, they suck the life right out of you.

My warm cozy bed is calling, my brain is in a funk.......time for me to rest.
Goodnight, Sweet dreams

Tuesday, October 21, 2014


Some days are truly diamonds in yoga was one of them.  For the past couple of weeks, I had struggled with my classes......much of it was out of my control, but my ego took it personally.  This week everything changed......and I am very grateful. It is the nature of where I teach that some days are so very difficult.  My students are going through such emotional upheaval and life changes that many days are nothing but drama filled roller coasters. Yesterday, the energy force changed, the heavens smiled and blessings came down.

Tomorrow, my oldest sister is having a hip replacement.  My younger brother is having an arterial gram ( heart cath) thankfully they will both be at the same hospital.  So as you say your prayers tonight, send one up for Nell and Ricky......they will be appreciated.

Sending grateful blessings of peace and great joy to all of you tonight, may good health find us all.

Monday, October 20, 2014


A quote to share with you this Monday night........

"Happiness cannot be traveled to, owned, earned, worn or consumed.  Happiness is the spiritual experience of living every minute with love, grace and gratitude. "  - Denis Waitley

Sunday, October 19, 2014


Sunday is my favorite day of the week.  It is the yin and yang, the beginning and the end.  It's the day to tie up loose ends, talk with friends and family, look back over the past week and look forward to the new week.  Sundays always make me feel optimistic, like I have a clean slate.  I suppose New Year's is that way for many, but with Sundays I get that feeling once a week.

We usually have a big late breakfast, take the dogs for a walk, read the papers, maybe have lunch with family.  We listen to music, do a few chores and look at the sky. Jordan and Sam come over and hang out in the back yard, sometimes friends come by.  We sat around this evening and played some songs, getting ready for our gig next week.

I think Sundays are extra special, because rarely do we have an agenda for Sundays.  My day planner is usually full, months in advance, but I try my best to leave Sundays open.  I suppose I think of Sundays as a personal day, my time if you will......and there is nothing better than a nap on Sunday afternoon.

Today has been a routine, normal Sunday........for me, a wonderful day.....I am rested, refreshed and at's been a good day.

Saturday, October 18, 2014

Making Memories

Jordan and Anthony, my great nephews came over and helped me make Spooky Cookies today.
My kitchen table is covered in sugar and all sorts of sugary scary stuff.

I think they might have had a just a little bit of fun....and maybe just a little bit of a sugar buzz.
I can't wait until Christmas.......when there is maybe eight little ones all around the table and a sugar blizzard covers my house.

Making memories......that's what it's all about.

Friday, October 17, 2014

Another First

Another first for Jordan today........he watched his first live parade.  Our local high school's homecoming was tonight,  the schools closed at 11:00am so all the kids could line up on the sides of the street and watch the parade.  It was true American hometown all the way........led by the majorettes, flag twirler, local police and the band.  There were floats with beauty queens, the cheerleaders, and football players.  There were fire trucks and motorcycles..........lots of noise, and candy being flung to the waving crowds.  He loved it and scooped up enough candy to last until Halloween.

Tomorrow we bake spooky cookies and decorate with all sorts of sugary toppings.  We are also planning a fall festival hayride for Jordan and his cousins and a couple of his friends from school.
It's not until November 1, but for Jordan and his mom it has become the event of the season.
Their plans keep expanding, as does the will be fun.

There was a tiny downside today......the serum sickness hit me on the way home.  Just as always, 9 days after treatment.   Lesson gotta take the good with the bad.
Goodnight, Sweet dreams

Thursday, October 16, 2014

As It Should

I have always said that in each class I teach, those who need to be there are there.......sometimes every mat is taken, some days only a couple.  Today for the first class, only a couple of guys came......but it was their day.  They were both interested in meditation......we talked for a few minutes about ways to meditate and then we did the deed.  We spent 10 minutes in meditation......they thought it was two or three minutes.

Afterwards, we did a little yoga practice and then savasana......when class was over, one of the young men hugged me.  He told me, that today it clicked.......the meditation, the yoga, the savasana.
It had been a difficult week for I needed to know that what I was doing made a difference to someone.  It was obvious that everyone got what they needed today.

It's interesting, how when something is needed, if we are will come to us.
The doubt, the struggle, the want of control.......when all of that stuff is happens the way it should.  I hope that tomorrow, you all let go of the stuff.......and your life happens as it should.

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Out of Sorts

Some days are just out of sorts days.......nothing you can put your finger on, or describe or even blame......just out of sort.  Today was  one of those.  Not a bad day,  just out of sorts.
A new haircut, a new hair stylist.....all is well.   A four hour class, a test and home work.....all is well.

Still that sensation of edge.......treatment was a week ago today......there is limbo for about ten days afterward.....waiting to see if the dreaded serum sickness hits.   So far.....all is well.

Ingrid ( my 1996 Volvo) might be on her last leg.......we are going to look for new transportation this weekend.  It is hard to think about driving a different vehicle, she has become part of the family.
She looks great, but her transmission is beginning to act a little slow and was rebuilt a few years ago......losing her.....will be tough.

Hoping that a good night's sleep will sort everything out.......

Goodnight, sweet dreams

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Big Day

We were lucky last night......just 4 inches of rain and wind.  Towns nearby had damage, are still without power, and one woman lost her life.  Living in a tornado alley has made us well aware the dangers of Mother Nature and her raging storms.  We take our advisories, and warnings very seriously.

What a difference a day makes.......yesterday 87 degrees, today mid-sixties.

Rick took our great nephew, Jordan to the library today.  He is only six, but reading around 5th grade level.  Jordan got his first library card today and lost a tooth.  A big day for a six year old.
Though it is difficult to see, he is holding his tooth.......he is expecting a visit tonight from the Tooth Fairy.  Of course, she always leaves a surprise at our house for him too.

I am off tomorrow,  will watch my class, take my test, and do my homework and get a haircut.......busy day, but hump days are always busy.

Goodnight, Sweet dreams

Monday, October 13, 2014

Early Post

This is an early post for is a stormy Monday, so far lots of trees and power lines down.....and the weather guy says the worst is yet to come.  Fingers crossed, he's wrong.

This is the price we pay for 87 degrees in October.  But, the good news, more autumn like weather will visit us tomorrow after the storms move through.

It was good to be back teaching today, my classes were great......just sorry I had to cancel my community class  because of the weather .  I truly do not want my students in harm's way.

So, if you live east/north of us here in Alabama....batten  down the hatches....rain and wind is coming your way.

Stay safe, warm and cozy.

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Sunday Night Storm

Our drought has finally ended, the monsoons started Friday night......tonight they continue.  It is more like spring storms than fall rain, but we will take what we are given and be grateful.
The lightening has been  awesome, cloud to cloud, cloud to ground and at times it just seems to float in the atmosphere.

The dogs are freaked by the storm, Caillou has sat in my lap for the past fifteen minutes.......Taz got my walking shoes and  is holding them tight  She figures leather will comfort her no matter what. :)

It has been a peaceful Sunday........Sam and Jordan came over for lunch.......our think tank of songwriters met this afternoon.   Family and friends make for a good day.

Blessings for a week of joy and peace, may good health find you all and never let go.
Goodnight, Sweet dreams

Saturday, October 11, 2014

Saturday Night Rest

Our great nephew Jordan has spent much of the day with us.......going grocery shopping with a six year old and his Uncle Rick made for an interesting morning.  This afternoon we played games out in the back yard.  I wish Jordan could share his energy, amazing stuff.

After treatment this week and a six year old for a good chunk of the past 24, I do remember what fatigue feels like.

Wishing you all a Sunday of peace, a Saturday night of rest.
Goodnight Sweet dreams

Friday, October 10, 2014

Hold Your Peace

"If you have not slept, or if you have slept, or if you have headache,or sciatica, or leprosy, or thunder-stroke, I beseech you, by all angels, to hold your peace, and not  pollute the  morning." - Ralph Waldo Emerson

I saw this quote and laughed.....there is a great article in O magazine this month about whining.  It is so easy to get into the complain and whine mode.....It starts innocently enough,  you just want someone to know that all is not right in your world.  Before you know it, every time you open your mouth a complaint or whine or several of each comes forth. 

Once you reach that level, you forget to look for the good, you forget to be grateful......the blinders are on and you are swimming in the sea of negativity  and whine.

I know how a complaint or whine can turn your morning upside down.......many times Rick and I have been sitting, having our morning coffee......before we know it, one of us has slid down the whiny path......and we both are in a bad mood.  Truly, you have to nip it in the bud.

Tomorrow morning, regardless of sunshine or rain, happy or sad.....just for a little while......hold your peace, don't pollute.
Your day will be better for it.
Goodnight, Sweet dreams

Thursday, October 9, 2014


My typical day after treatment .......LOTS of couch time, as it should be.
Taz and Calliou love couch time, it's their favorite time.

I am still a slug tonight, and my brain is rather  mushy.
My energy should return sorry.
Goodnight, Sweet dreams.

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Treatment # 34

It was a good/bad day today.......treatment #34......almost three years ago, my first time in that big green chair.  I remember it like it was yesterday.  The side effects ( or serum sickness) started almost
immediately, they are still going strong......though the change of brands, the slowing of the drip, and the addition of fluids this past month has made them milder, but more frequent .

I actually got sick in the chair today.... for the first time, my nurses saw what I had talked about for these past 34 months.  How quickly it hit amazed them.

My chair buddy Louis gave me a wonderful surprise today.  He had called over the weekend and told me that he wanted to take Rick and me to lunch after my treatment today.  The surprise, he had actually cooked lunch for was wonderful.   He is an awesome cook......we had cornbread, squash, string beans, potatoes, slaw, meatloaf and banana pudding.  Wow, it was a feast.

I say it often, the best thing about the green chair.......the friends I have made.  Louis has become  a member of our family, his friendship has been a gift.  One of our nurses is getting married this winter, I hope that Rick and Louis and I can make it to his wedding.  It will be wonderful to share his happiness on his big day.
 The photo was made at Louis's house today, after treatment.
His home is as warm and loving as he is......I am so grateful that the big green chair brought us together.

Tuesday, October 7, 2014


" Dreams are illustrations.......from the book your soul is writing about you."   - Marsha Norman

There are particular dreams that I have that are recurring.  They are beautiful dreams about  a river, a water fall and a seaside village.
I also have recurring musical dreams, where I sing in front of thousands.

My most favorite dream ever.......the night my friend John died, ( I did not know he was dead until the next day)  I dreamed that he knocked on our door, and he told me that he was going to take me for the ride of my life.  He was on beautiful white horse and when I climbed up behind him, we rode that horse through a star filled
night sky.....John was laughing the whole time.

When I was a child, I had horrible nightmares......but they have disappeared with age, thank goodness.  

I love it when I dream.....every morning I try to remember my dreams because I have always believed they are ties to my life, its good times and bad.....quite often dreams have given me answers that I search for.

Goodnight, Sweet dreams

Monday, October 6, 2014

We Change

"Things do not change; we change."  - Henry David Thoreau

Thoreau was wise as wise could be......he knew human nature.
He knew that as humans we want everyone and everything around us......we want change but we don't want to be the change.  Change starts with us.  Gandhi said to be the change we wished to see in the world.........we change and as we change, we see the world, other people, even ourselves differently.

Thoreau's change was moving to the pond, simplifying his life.
He understood that his life in town, his job was not changing....he had to change.  For most of us, there comes a time when we understand also......."things do not change;we change." 

Sunday, October 5, 2014

October 5

Homework is done, yoga blankets are washed, house is reasonably clean......ready for a new week to begin, even though it is a treatment week.    First full week of October, and the color is beginning  to show across the hills.  More rain to come later in the week, I like that.....rainy and cool, much like Ireland this time of year.

The golden rods are in full bloom, we have seen a couple of v's of geese......yet there are still humming birds dropping by the feeders.  Seasons tend to over lap here in Alabama, slowly spreading from one to the next. It can be breath taking to see Zinnias three tall in brilliant colors standing next to a patch of golden rod.

I will share with you all an interesting website that I have been using in the class I am taking.
PubMed is a great source of thousands of published medical papers that you can read.If you have questions about a disease or medication you should find the answer there.  I will warn you, these are medical papers and some can be complicated but I have found it extremely interesting.

Sending you all blessings for the coming week, The Hunter's Moon will be in full glory on the 8th, a great way to mark the middle of the week.  Peace to you all.

Saturday, October 4, 2014

Fall Arrives

Autumn arrived here in Alabama last night!  It was forty-two degrees when we got up this morning, only sixty-four for a high today.  The sky was as blue as any I have ever seen out west.
Can you tell that autumn is my favorite season?  Yes, I wore my new boots and jacket today.

It has been a hectic weekend, not nearly as much fun as last weekend ( when we were playing at the Johnson City Folk Festival) but one filled with community activities.  The local Chamber of Commerce held their annual 5K run this morning, and then The  Frog Festival was in a neighboring town.  We have spent a great deal of the day saying hello and eating festival food.......candy apples, BBQ, funnel cakes, you know the good stuff.  :)

I have to do my home work tomorrow, we have a gig coming up, so we have to rehearse, and family is dropping by from Mississippi.

I hope your weekend has been a good one.  May your Sunday give you rest, joy and peace.
Goodnight, Sweet dreams

Friday, October 3, 2014


" All war is a symptom of man's failure as a thinking animal."
- John Steinbeck

Maybe one day we will be successful thinking animals......

Thursday, October 2, 2014

Human Kindness

Human kindness......I have thought about it much this week.  One of my cousins passed away......and my first thought about him, was his kindness.   Donald, my cousin, and his siblings and their parents were some of the kindest people I have ever known.  Uncle George and  Aunt Ophelia  were the type of people who would give you the shirt off their backs if they thought you needed it.......their kids are the same.

I think kindness is a wonderful way to be remembered.  I would like to think that when my time comes, kindness might be the first word that is thought about me.  What an honor to be remembered for your kindness.

I told Donald's wife tonight, that he was one of the kindest people I had ever known......she smiled, and told me how much he had loved my family.  We all grew up in similar circumstances, not much money, but lots of love.....and kindness.

 If I could give  my nieces and nephews one piece of life advice tonight, I would tell them
to be kind.......even to those who don't seem to deserve much kindness.  Sometimes if you listen to the news babble,  it might seem there is no human kindness on the planet.  I know that is not true.  I believe we all have kindness within us.......maybe for some it is buried deep in their hearts, and long forgotten.  It might be as small as a mustard seed, but it's still there, waiting for someone to nurture  and help it grow.

Human is something to be proud of, to nurture and to teach to our children.

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

October 1

October parents anniversary today, I miss them

October 1......85 degrees today, by Saturday, highs in the 60's.

October 1......days are getting shorter, leaves are beginning to show some color

October 1.....I have new sweaters and is good

October 1....I love favorite treat, candy corn and salted peanuts mixed together

October 1....treatment #34 next week

October 1.....time to make one of my Mom's best dishes, ribs with sauerkraut and potatoes!

October 1....hoping for rain this weekend, I want to smell burning leaves ( we are under a burn ban)

October 1.....Taz needs a sweater, Calliou just wants cooler weather

October 1......  A Hunter's moon this month

October 1......something about autumn makes me hopeful

October 1.....a trip to the beach would be nice

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

The Essence of Who You Are

Last photo from Johnson City I promise.   This is how I transform on the weekends, this is my joy.
I have been performing since I was nine years old. This is who I am.

In my classes at work, I often ask my students if they remember what they enjoyed most as a child......what was their passion.....what did they want to be when they grew up.
And, if they could spend their days doing anything at all.....what would it be.  It is amazing how  many don't remember their dreams, they don't remember what gave them joy.

We grow up, get on a path that often has no real meaning to is just a way to make a living.  I understand that.....I like a roof over my head and three meals a day as much as anyone.  But you can still take your dreams, your passion, your joy and bring them into your life in small ways. You can still hold on to the essence of who you are.