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