Lucky Sisters

When I was born many years ago, my mother became quite ill. Her thyroid quit on her and depression set in. Imagine having a brand new baby and being in the throes of depression?

My grandmother came to care for her daughter and the family, but a son-in-law, two other children, and a new baby presented her with a lot to do.

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I was a sweet baby, but let’s face it, I was a 9 pound-plus baby who liked to eat, even back then.

Thus, my five and a half-year-old sister became my mother. She changed diapers, fed me my bottle, and cooed at me and lulled me to sleep.

It took my mother a long time to recover, and by the time she was stable on thyroid medication, I had bonded with my sister.

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When I would fall and have a boo-boo I wanted Mel. If I woke in the night with a bad dream, I wanted Mel. I think, looking back, it must have been hard for my mother to see that her baby, didn’t come running to her.

But you see, I was very lucky. Melodie was the best thing that ever happened to me.

My Mom suffered from deep depression most of the remainder of her life. The dark moods often came when I would need a mother the most, and for me, Melodie was always there.

I joke with her kids that I was her first child, but in reality, I really was. She would give me baths, read to me, and calm my fears and pains. She even snuck into the hospital to see me, when at age four I had my appendix out.

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I have not seen her since Christmas. Although we talk on the phone every day. In fact, if life gets crazy and I don’t call, she worries!  And if I don’t hear from her, I also get concerned.

Sometimes if you are lucky, and your birth mother cannot be there for you, due to illness or perhaps they were young and unable to care for you, another woman will step in and fill that role.

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For me, it was my sister, Melodie. Young as she was, she stepped up to the plate. She loves with her whole heart and she loves deeply. How fortunate I have been to have her in my life.

I love you, Melodie!

Maribeth Dackel

A Really Great Day

Tuesday the 11th was a very full day indeed! And it was all good. After months of mostly bad news in the world, today, in my little corner of the world The good news kept on coming!

I got up and weighed in.

August 11thI finally have lost 50 pounds! I have shared with you my battle with my weight and to get to this milestone made my entire day! And that was at 5:45 AM!

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Feeling happier than a girl should on a hot and sticky Tuesday, I was sitting in my chair anticipating going to the grocery store and Post Office when the phone rang.

It was my Veterinarian. He wanted to tell me that Arnie’s blood tests had come back showing a rise in his titers four times that of a healthy dog. This test showed that Arnie did have Leptospirosis with no doubts about the diagnosis!

20200706_154022Arnie is better now, thank goodness, I caught it quickly and he got the care that he needed!

The Vet had spoken with the Pharmaceutical Company and they have agreed to pay all of Arnie’s bills for treatment! I faxed the bill to them and hopefully, they will send me a check quickly!

Then I set about changing sheets and doing work around the house. I knew the third part of my day would be upon me soon and I was looking forward to it.

Then this guy came to call. It was so hot here that he simply sat on my patio table for a long time. I grabbed my Olympus Camera and started snapping. Here is the very best shot of the bunch. Isn’t he handsome?

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Why Jimmeney Crickett!

(Actually a Grasshopper)

My own picture!

I decreed that I would have a Scotch after I lost the first 25 pounds. Then after I lost 50 pounds I would have another Scotch. So today was the day I got to enjoy 1 fine Glenlivet Scotch. Oh, it tasted so very good!

My scotchSo Tuesday was a very good day! I am so grateful for all of it. Some days you just feel better about life than others. Today was that day!

Maribeth Dackel

Happy Birthday, Melodie!

Today is my sister’s birthday. I wish I could be down in Connecticut with her to celebrate her big day. Alas, this is one more Covid-19 moment.

I do want to tell you all what a wonderful sister Melodie is. She is five and a half years older than me, and I was her “first baby”. She cared for me like a little mother and was always more like a mother to me, than a sister.

Mel is one of the kindest women that I know. She always has a smile and a warm greeting for those around her. She loves her family with her whole heart and rejoices in their successes and comforts them in their sorrows.

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Ron and Melodie

She has been married to her husband, Ron for 49 years. They met at the age of 13 at summer camp and wrote to each other for many years before their wedding in November of 1971.

So today, on her sixty-seventh Birthday I want to wish my beloved sister, Melodie a very Happy Birthday!

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Finding Joy

During Covid-19, many people are having trouble finding the joy in life. Right now, life is still hard.

Many people are still not working, and many are working from home which can be its own source of stress. Long hours, children running around in a state of summer boredom, and those darn meals and dishes that don’t seem to ever get done by themselves.

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I’m dealing with a husband, who has been in lockdown since mid-March. He has gotten short-tempered and sees very little joy in his life. He yells a lot. He yells at the TV and at me. Last night I had just about had it.

Early on, during the Covid-19 Lockdown, I admit to being scared, literally a wreck! I would wake in the morning with aching jaws after clenching my teeth all night long. Thankfully, I have a bite guard, or all my teeth would be cracked by now!

Anyway, I decided that I needed to find joy in each day of my life. Be it big or small.

Certainly, the success I have had on the WW Plan with losing weight has helped me, and I worked hard creating good meals for us and trying very hard to live in the land of light.

Once I began to see my grandchildren every few weeks, that also has helped.

My daughter’s family has isolated very strictly like I have. Hygiene is the most important thing for me and for them. So expanding our bubble to include each other has been such a joy!

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Tending to, and finding a return to health for Arnie and Anneliese, although stressful at the start, makes me feel so very happy.

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Things in the world are crazy and wild, but I try to stay grounded and remember the love, the joy, and the hope for a better future for us all.

I know it isn’t like this for everyone, and I wish I could help them find their own Joy, but this is something they must do for themselves.

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Have you been able to find your joy during Covid-19?

Being Thankful

On Tuesday I had to bring my car to the shop to get it inspected for the year. She’s fairly new and since we have hardly driven her since her last oil change and new tires, she passed the exam with flying colors.

I’d had an idea in the morning to go and surprise my friend Carol. I have now lost 39.2 pounds and she has not seen me during this time. I thought, if I go over to her house and call her to come out onto her porch, she can see me!

So I dressed in nice clothes and off I went. After the tests at the Dealership, I drove over to her house! Oh, I was so excited! And it was even better than I thought!

I got out and threw my hands in the air and danced around Carol’s driveway! We both laughed and smiled, and it’s one of the best things I have felt since this whole Corona Virus started back on March 13th for me.

Nov 17 004A picture of Carol and me a few years ago. I love this picture!

The most poignant part was at the end. I kept telling her how much I love her and she kept saying I love you more! Yes, seeing someone who is this special in my life just made my entire day!

It was hot and sticky, but I did not care. I got to see my friend for the first time in several months! And for that I am thankful!

Maribeth Dackel

Koru

koru1My life changed a few months ago. I was in the grocery store and I saw an Apple called “Koru”. Now I love apples anyway, so I decided to get a couple and try them.

I am over the moon in love with this apple. I probably eat two a day and they taste that good each time and for every bite! Yum!

Since Jack (AKA Apple Jack) knew nothing about this apple I decided to find out what I could about it. What type of apple was it related to? It certainly didn’t taste like anything I’d ever eaten.

So here we go. A little bit about my favorite Apple.

Bringing KORU Apple to you is a story beginning with pure chance. From a little seedling, we have established an international commercial production over two decades. We hope you enjoy the journey…

Geoff Plunkett discovered Koru as a chance seedling in 1998 near Nelson, New Zealand. Plunkett and his family believed the seedling grew from an apple his wife’s mother threw into the garden. They began to be commercially available in 2013. Today, about 85% of the Koru apples in the US are imported from New Zealand. However, they also grow in the Northwest and Northeast of the United States. The number of Koru apples available to market has steadily grown over the past few years, as more people have discovered them. Some growers think it has the potential to have a larger presence on grocery shelves, much like the modern variety Honeycrisp.”

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This week our local grocery store had a sale on Koru apples. I bought 10 pounds! (Remember, apples are heavy!)

So, give them a try. Their juicy, sweetness will win you over. At WW many of my Classmates have been convinced and were also going shopping to take advantage of the sale.

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Disney Kids

Mandy and Matt took the kids to Disney for February Vacation. I love it! So many parents never take the time or opportunity to play with their kids. Mandy and Matt really like their kids, as well as love them. They enjoy spending family time together, just having fun. It’s just wonderful to see.

Screenshot_20200225-133924_SnapchatMatt & Savi

49585743221_d290a8a509_kMandy and Quinn.

Mandy has been sending me pictures and videos and I wait each day for her texts and pictures to arrive. It makes me so happy to see them having such a good time.

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Quinn and Savi. How did they grow up so fast? It was just yesterday that they were little babies!

84222888_10221912543824418_4856120226514731008_nAren’t they the sweetest?

87284821_10221912542464384_1601918085810356224_nI am just loving Savannah’s purple sandals. They look so comfortable! And just love those scary faces!

They’ll be back soon and I can hardly wait to hear all about their adventures!

Mandy and Matt are such good parents and I am really proud of them. Not because they go to Disney with the kids, but that they both have the ability to play with their kids, and their kids both know how loved they are.

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Dust

As the weekend neared, our temperatures began to moderate some. we actually had some melting in the drive and on our back patio. Jack decided to clean up the yard a bit and make the doggy run area a bit wider.

My work was washing the master bedroom and family room. Since I’ve been laid up for a while the dust was deep. So out came the Clorox Wipes and everything got wiped down. Tomorrow will be vacuuming day. Both the family room and the bedroom, and probably the kitchen too.

I expect that we will watch another marathon viewing of Homeland. We’ve really enjoyed watching the older episodes as we wait for the new ones.

PC080001The birds have been busy at the feeders, and I really enjoy watching them. I find such peace with that.

I hope you all have a great weekend!

I Can Do This!

As you all know, I returned to WW Class on January 1st, 2020. My New Years Resolution was to stick to the plan and lose the weight I need to so that I can get my health back.

In the three weeks, I have stuck to the plan 100%. No cheating, no overeating, and I have done very well. In fact, I am so encouraged that it is actually making it easier to stay on plan, and I feel I have fallen into a good routine.

Here is what I have done since January 1st!

83889511_10158021913061499_8485959463897923584_oI’m feeling good and I started to anticipate things in my mind. For instance, if I can lose 15 pounds a month…

But, I quickly reined in my thoughts and said to myself, “Not so fast, Maribeth. I need to simply take it one day at a time”.

I’m also thinking about things differently. I’m making these changes in my eating because it is healthier for me.

54ba4335d35eefea401e34b6db36510eReally I feel pretty good about the whole thing. No, I feel very good! This is working out nicely. I will keep you all posted!

My Plants Lived!

Thursday night was pretty cold up here. When I woke at 6 AM it was 38 degrees (F). I looked outside and there was a heavy dew on the ground. I decided that it was time for me to bring in my Christmas Cactus Plants.

Last Spring, after I was sure that the frosts were over, I put all three of them outside. They all looked pretty bad and if they died, they died.

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We had a lot of rain in the Spring and I was worried they wouldn’t do well because of all the moisture. Then I read all about Christmas Cactus’s and learned that they are not Cactus! They are succulents! They are also, three different varieties of Christmas Cactus!

So I left them alone. Out in the warm rain with both sunshine and rain and they came back! So I repotted all three of them, putting them in nice mossy soil with good drainage, and they continued to thrive.

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This is my oldest Christmas Cactus. It’s looking so much better now.

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This is my second Christmas Cactus and I thought I could pull this one back and I did.

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And lastly, this one I thought for sure was a goner! I predicted that I would be throwing it in the compost pile! But if you look at all the lighter color leaves, you will note all the new growth!

So the Christmas Cactus plants were all moved inside today and now all I need to do is remember to water them daily and mist them once a week.

I think I can handle that! Have a great weekend everyone!