In Memoriam

Today is the thirty-third anniversary of the accident that took my beloved daughter, Katie from our lives. Many years ago I wrote about the accident, and the things I could recall. You can read that post HERE.

Kate

The 13th of June is a somber day for me. and I think it always will be. At this point in life, I get quite angry that Katie did not live to grow up. Never knew her first love, went to a Prom, had children, or could be whatever it was that she wanted to be in this life. It was all taken from her, and from those of us, that love her.

Below you will find a montage of pictures of my darling little girl. While putting this together, I was struck by the fact that one of the hardest things as a parent is when you realize that a certain picture of your child, is the very last picture you have.

 

Would you know my name
If I saw you in heaven?
Would it be the same
If I saw you in heaven?
I must be strong and carry on
‘Cause I know I don’t belong here in heaven
Would you hold my hand
If I saw you in heaven?
Would you help me stand
If I saw you in heaven?
I’ll find my way through night and day
‘Cause I know I just can’t stay here in heaven
Time can bring you down, time can bend your knees
Time can break your heart, have you begging please, begging, please
Beyond the door, there’s peace I’m sure
And I know there’ll be no more tears in heaven
Would you know my name
If I saw you in heaven?
Would it be the same
If I saw you in heaven?
I must be strong and carry on
‘Cause I know I don’t belong here in heaven

Best Of All

Monday found me driving south for a medical appointment. It is a long way to go, but I like the doctor I am dealing with.

After the appointment, I headed to my favourite place. My daughter’s house, where I was greeted with big hugs and kisses from Mandy, Savi and Quinn. So much love! What a wonderful thing!

32375907_10156371048696499_3359399427520331776_n

One of the best things about being with them on Monday was that I got to play with them on the swings and monkey bars, and we also played hide and go seek! I just spent the better part of an hour simply laughing and playing with the kids, and it was the most wonderful thing in the world.

Being surrounded by their love made me feel so blessed. I am so lucky to have them!

Best of all, despite the long drive for me, I will see them again on Wednesday and Friday! Wednesday Savannah graduates from Kindergarten, and Friday I am babysitting the kids as there is no daycare that day, and Mandy has an important work day. Long ride, but oh, so very worth it!

What a great way to start my week!

The Triple Crown!

The weekend passed with the coronation of a new Triple Crown Winner! Justify joins an elite number of horses, (13) to have won The Kentucky Derby, The Preakness, and now the Belmont Stakes! Of these 13 horses, I have watched 5 of them win.

Justify is a beautiful horse. He is smart, likes to lead, and during a race, he seems to float over the track, in an effortless gallop to the finish line!

horse

The Jockey riding him, Mike Smith, struck me as a man who truly loves this horse, knew what he could do, and over the years of training with him, had developed an ease, a oneness, with this horse. After the race, at one point, he leaned down, hugging this horse, and kissed his neck. I think I cried more at that moment than I did when they crossed the finish line.

Bob Baffert is an amazing trainer of horses. This man seems to know just what to do to get the most out of the horses that he trains. His comment about Justify was that he knew this horse was special the moment he saw him. And indeed, Justify did not disappoint!

horse 1

Now Justify will have a good life. well, at least a good life for a retired Racing Champion, who will have many sweet Fillies coming to visit in order that his bloodline will be carried on. And so it should be.

Justify truly is magnificent!

The Trooping of The Colour

On Saturday we caught a glimpse of The Trooping of the Colour in London, celebrating the Queens 92nd Birthday. As soon as I saw Duchess Meghan I knew the British Press would have a field day. What would be a lovely dress here in the States for a special occasion was immediately criticized by the UK Press. Why? Well, seems Meghan was baring her shoulders, at an event honouring the Queen during the day. A tremendous Fashion Faux Pas!

gettyimages-970332220-1528553857

All the other Royal women (true blood royals or those who married into the family and have been around a while) were dressed in lovely dresses and coats. All with appropriate necklines and absolutely all of them covered their shoulders!

gettyimages-970276024-1528540847

Oops! Well, I hope the British people will chalk it up to a learning curve and don’t continue to find fault. I also hope that someone will sit that girl down and explain the Rules and Regulations for being a British Royal and dressing like one.

All that being said, she looked amazingly beautiful, as always, and she and Harry looked very happy. One thing that would take all the pressure off of poor Meghan is if they announce she is with a child. Making Harry a Daddy will go a long way towards the country accepting her wholeheartedly.

Now doesn’t that sound terrible? It’s just that I read a lot about American Meghan and I wish they would stop all that nonsense and just be kind to her. Unfortunately, many people are only too anxious to find fault.

They did the same with Kate until she popped out a few kids, and now they actually refer to her as The Duchess of Cambridge and not Kate Middleton. Don’t worry Meghan, your time will come too!

Farewell Tony

Tony Bourdain

I was devastated to learn about Anthony Bourdain’s suicide. Really devastated. I read so many people who said they weren’t surprised, he was a wild man, etc. The thing is, he was an extremely talented man, with more demons inside him than any of us could ever have guessed. And to commit suicide shows just how tormented he was.

I watched Tony for years in his much-loved show, “No Reservations“. The reruns were shown at lunchtime, and I would allow myself an hour to watch the two back to back episodes per day. You never knew where Tony was going to be, or what take he would put on the place.

My favorite of his guests were Erik Ripert and Zamir Gotta. His two dear friends, who loved him like a brother. I hope he knew that.

We, the audience, loved our Bad Boy. We laughed at his antics and smiled at his ease navigating other countries. Tony made every dish he ate, interesting to us.

Did he know? Did he understand how much he was loved by so many of us? Or did the demons inside of him rob him of the knowledge of how much we cared?

I am sorry for his daughter. For his close friends, and for those of us that loved his indomitable spirit of adventure!

Rest in peace Tony, you, my friend, will be sorely missed!

 

The Friday Five

The Friday Five

I am finding that this year is slipping by far faster than I anticipated. Is that because I’m getting older, or is the time really flying by? I was looking at pictures of darling Quinn and he has been growing so quickly and changing so much, just in the few months since his birthday! See…

2018-03-04_08-26-08 34367955_10216399043430354_2715870012110798848_n

The left is his second birthday in March and the right is at the end of May, at Savannah’s birthday. He went from toddler to a little boy!

In any case, here are the five things I am thinking about this Friday.

  1. The French Open Tennis has been a real surprise. Well, except for Raphael Nadal, who will more than likely win it all. I think the most exciting thing this year is all the young newcomers. I will miss the older generation when they retire, but there are so many you, energetic and healthy young players.
  2. I’ve been trying new recipes this week and have a new salad recipe. It includes the usual things like lettuce and cukes and tomatoes, but I added a few strawberries and mandarin oranges! All I can say is…YUM!
  3. It’s the start of Motorcycle Week here in the Lakes Region of New Hampshire. Motorcyclists from all over descend upon our area and take over. The drone of bikes permeates my house from morning till night! And forget about going to the grocery store or Post Office. The roads are clogged and there are no parking places! Ugh!
  4. It has been overcast and humid the last few days. Not exactly beautiful, but at least it is not raining, and the temperatures have been in the 70’s.
  5. What are my plans for the weekend? Laundry and housework! I need to catch up. It seems like the perfect time.

Have a great weekend!

The Thursday Thirteen

936204

As you may recall, last week I returned to Weight Watchers to try to get a handle on my weight. I decided to follow the plan to the letter, to write down everything I ate and just see what happened. Here is how my week went.

  1. The first thing I did was to sit down and read everything I was given at class, twice! There is so much information and I wasn’t sure I understood it all.
  2. After reading everything, I decided that I needed to journal my eating (write everything down so I could keep track of the points accurately!). Since I have purchased both the online and in-person meeting program, I’ve been keeping track of everything online.
  3. Then I set about fixing wonderful Zero point salads, and also Zero point meals. I was thinking about how to plan things that I was eating. For instance, I attended Savannah’s party and I knew there would be steak and cupcakes! And I also knew I would want both! So, I ate only Zero point meals until dinner that night. Then I had my steak and my cupcake too!
  4. I was in the grocery store and I saw the first bags of California New Potatoes. A particular favorite of mine. Hmmmm. Well, I checked and a 5-ounce potato was 5 points. Okay, I can do that. So with my wonderful Haddock fillet, I had the New Potato and Corn on the Cob, which is also Zero points!
  5. It struck me after a few days that I was never feeling hungry. I was eating balanced meals, and snacks too, and never felt like I was deprived. I am eating all the things I enjoy and it was working.
  6. I also got a little worried. Could eating this well really produce a weight loss? What if I did everything right and come Wednesday morning, didn’t lose an ounce! Or worse yet, gained weight! Perish the thought!
  7. As I got ready on Wednesday morning for class, I didn’t even dare to sip a cup of coffee before weighed in! I just knew that one sip of coffee would put on at least a pound of fluid in my body!
  8. I got to class, went to Tami who has been weighing me in since 2008 when I have attended class and has always been rooting for me. I told her that my scale showed a good weight loss, but if I didn’t show the same weight loss at class, that old scale was being thrown out!
  9. I stepped on the scale and………Tami said my scale wasn’t going to the dump just yet! I was down 5.2 pounds!!!
  10. I cannot tell you how happy I was and How relieved too. But my leader, Pam and my cousin Rikki were both right. They told me that if I worked the program it would work for me! And it had!
  11. So, when class began Pam asked if anyone had anything to share, good or bad or helpful? I raised my hand and was all but jumping out of my seat, much like Hermione Granger in the Harry Potter movies!
  12. She called on me, and I started out by recounting my week. I spoke of Zero Point foods and meals, of not feeling hungry. I also spoke of some of the things I ate, like Baby-back ribs, pork chops, the best grilled steak ever, and the California New Potatoes! And how I had lost 5.2 pounds this week! And how good I felt! Many of the people there asked questions, and other people talked about their struggles and their triumphs with the program.
  13. It was a great way to re-start my quest for a healthy weight through the Weight Watchers program. I know I will not lose 5 pounds every week, but I do believe that this is an eating plan I can live with lifelong.

149450591_8d7a17c7cd_o

 

Wednesday Hodgepodge

1. Describe your 30’s in one sentence. If you’re not yet 30 tell us one thing you hope to accomplish once you hit that particular decade.

It was a decade of learning, living and trying to find balance, as I traveled the world and saw places I’d only dreamed about.

Epilogue

Me standing on top of the Wall in Berlin, Germany, shortly after it “came down” and Germany was reunified.

2. Is it harder for you to exercise or eat healthy?

Both. It always has been, but last week I returned to Weight Watchers and I actually love their new plan. I’m eating well, feeling satisfied, and starting to move better as well.

3. June 7th is National VCR Day. Huh? Anyway this reminded me of something I saw on Facebook listing household items we no longer have and the VCR was on it. I couldn’t put my hands on that list, but found another list here of 21 items we all had ten years ago, but which are now obsolete-

Still have my VCR, Joyce. I am so retro! LOL!

bookshelves (WHAT!!???)
Yes
drip coffee makers,
Yes. And used every single day.
alarm clocks,
Yes
file cabinets,
Yes.
desktop computers,
Yes
printers,
Yes
printed phone books,
Yes
answering machines,
Yes
fax machines,
Yes
paper shredders,
No
a Rolodex,
Yes
CD racks,
Yes
CD burners,
Yes
china cabinets,
Yes
home phones,
Yes.
entertainment consoles,
Sort of.
DVD players,
Yes
calculators,
Yes
takeout menus,
Yes
incandescent light bulbs,
Yes
and cable TV

Yes

Your thoughts? How many on the list do you still have? Still, use?

I still have almost all of them, (see list above) and I still use them all.

4. What’s something you see disappearing in the next ten years?

Oh, I am not sure. I do know that my husband’s much love, 15+-year-old flip-phone will become obsolete as Verizon will no longer support the signal, as of January 1, 2019. He is not thrilled, even though I have gotten my old Galaxy S5 cleaned up and programmed just for him. He hates change of any kind though.

5. How did you celebrate your birthday this past year? Is that typical?

It was a very nice, quiet family dinner. That’s usually how we do it. Nothing big, but my daughter made a great meal and cake!

FB_IMG_1511041199776

Quinn feeding Oma (me) my cake!

Later this year, (November) is my 60th Birthday and I hope there will be some sort of special celebration!

6. Insert your own random thought here.

I saw the sun briefly on Tuesday morning before the clouds returned and also some rain. I’m hoping it clears up before later on this afternoon. I must drive over the mountain here, for my test, and would really enjoy the drive more if it was sunny.

149450591_8d7a17c7cd_o

Clipper Lane

I was thinking about my childhood the other day, and I was recalling my childhood home on Clipper Lane. This was the house my parents brought me home to when I was born. It is where I spent the first ten years of my life. Even now, when I think of places that I felt really grounded and safe, Clipper Lane is at the top of the list.

August 2 023

Whenever I go back to Falmouth, I always go by and say hello to my old homestead. It is still there and the new family that lives there loves my old home too, and take very good care of it.

August 2 006

This house is a five-minute walk from the beach, and a five-minute walk in the opposite direction takes you into town. The perfect place.

I guess that was why, when my parents decided to sell it and move to the other side of town, I was really devastated. I remember feeling like my entire world had been turned upside down. Which, looking back wasn’t true because we were moving 2.7 miles away from my much-loved home on Clipper Lane. But to me, it was the end of the world!

I had to start in a new school, meet new kids, and carve out a whole new life as a fifth grader. I was terrified, but eventually, I settled in, only to be moved two years later to another home that was 4.4 miles in the opposite direction.

I’m not sure how military kids do it because it was really tough for me, and I never even left Falmouth. But somehow, that first move away from Clipper Lane never really left me.

Sometimes I dream about moving back to Falmouth, but I know it wouldn’t be the same. So I will just keep going back for short visits. Enjoying every moment that I can while I am there.

signature

 

 

Here I am on Sunday night, my first week back at Weight Watchers, and I have not strayed at all. I’m reading and planning and so far I find that there is plenty to eat to fill myself up. The key here has been the planning.

weighing20upside20down

I’m trying to eat as many fish, chicken and vegetable meals, as I can. It seems to be working as I have not been overcome with hunger. I am also drinking a lot of water and iced tea.

I wasn’t sure I could handle my withdrawal from sugar, but so far I have done very well. I also plan meals and snacks with as many Zero point foods as I can. Trust me, there are plenty of those.

My weigh in is Wednesday and I am anxious to see how I have done. I really hope that I have lost enough weight to spur me on. I admit to being easily discouraged.

We shall see.

scale-cartoon1