Friday, February 7, 2014

Stardust to Stardust

Yesterday we celebrated the life of a dear friend and family member.
And once again I realized how truth is always there in all its many guises.
The phrase "Dust to Dust" has far more meaning that just something to be said at the closing of life in this realm and time.
We now know that we are made of the same things that stars are made of. In other words, we are made of stardust.
Since, apparently, nothing completely vanishes, but only takes a different form it can be said we return to the stardust we came from.
So sometime, someplace, a bright and shinning new star will come from one who was a bright and shinning star while he was here with us.
It was a great blessing to know you, Jerry.

Sunday, February 2, 2014

It's Been A Long TIme

I haven't posted on this blog in a long time, but today I decided to do something with it again. When will I do another blog? Goodness only knows.
I began searching for ways to keep moving and here is a review of a book about Rocking Chair Exercise.
 In addition to the book I've reviewed I also found some stuff about rocking chair exercise on YouTube.
This led me to a handy book by Dr. Henry F. Ogle The Rocking Chair Exercise Book. I hope he puts it into Kindle form soon.
I found the Chapters 10 through 18 the most helpful, but I recommend at least skimming the book all the way through the first time. Do pay attention to his CYA's. It is very easy to overdo the first time because, after all, you are "just" rocking. It is all too easy to get involved in a book or, in my case, crocheting, or TV and forget how long you are rocking. Next day. Ouch.
I bought this book because, in view of recent articles on how dangerous just sitting can be, I am on the lookout for anything that will encourage movement throughout the day.
After a month of following suggestions in this book, I think it might be a very good thing if everyone, from toddlers to great-grandparents, has a rocking chair and uses it most of the time instead of a stationary chair.
I remember having a rocking chair when I was a very little girl and my grandmother would have me sit in it and listen to the radio with her (while she rocked and crocheted). Since I was moving I wasn't as inclined to get up and run around as if I had been sitting still.
 I also discovered a couple of years ago when I was in a great deal of pain that rocking, with or without a chair, relieves pain. A LOT.
And for the guys out there Dr. Ogle says rocking can help with your abs.
One qualifier; if you've recently had surgery or a long period of inactivity for some reason, talk to your doctor before you start rocking.
 In my case my doctor told me to wait for six weeks before beginning my rocking exercises. She felt this was especially important because I'd had major surgery in the lower abdominal area. Having several "wrecks" over the years from not listening to my doctors I paid attention. Glad I did.
Now I am on the "Rocking Chair Exercise" program and enjoying it which is more than I can say for most of the exercise I do (swimming excepted). So let's "everybody rock."

Thursday, January 12, 2012

My Beliefs

I've had a lot of time to think about my beliefs this past two years. Today I stumbled across the term "Christian Left". I went to Wikipedia to research it and decided that the following description fitted a lot of my personal beliefs.

Definition of Christian Left

As with any division inside the left- and right- wings of the political spectrum, such a label is an approximation, including within it groups and persons holding diverse viewpoints. The term left-wing might encompass a number of values which may or may not be held by different Christian movements and individuals.
As the unofficial title of a loose association of believers, it does provide a clear distinction from the more commonly known "Christian Right" or "Religious Right" and its key leaders and political views.
The most common religious viewpoint which might be described as 'left wing' is social justice, or care for the poor and the oppressed (see Minority groups). Supporters of this might encourage universal health care, welfare provision, subsidized education, foreign aid, and Affirmative Action for improving the conditions of the disadvantaged. Stemming from egalitarian values, adherents of the Christian left consider it part of their religious duty to take actions on behalf of the oppressed. As nearly all major religions contain some kind of requirement to help others, social justice has been cited by various religions as in line with their faith.
The Christian Left holds that social justice, renunciation of power, humility, forgiveness, and private observation of prayer (as opposed to publicly mandated prayer), are mandated by the Gospel (Matthew 6:5-6). The Bible contains accounts of Jesus repeatedly advocating for the poor and outcast over the wealthy, powerful, and religious. The Christian Left maintains that such a stance is relevant and important. Adhering to the standard of "turning the other cheek", which they believe supersedes the Old Testament law of "an eye for an eye", the Christian Left often hearkens towards pacifism in opposition to policies advancing militarism.
While non-religious socialists sometimes find support for socialism in the Gospels (for example Mikhail Gorbachev citing Jesus as "the first socialist"),[1] the Christian Left does not find that socialism alone as an adequate end or means. Christian faith is the core of their belief which in turn demands social justice.

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Perfect Picture Moment

I almost never have a camera handy when these moments occur.

For some reason Blarney, our Malamute/Border Collie, was being a real pest as I tried to eat my breakfast. He crowded close to my chair and panted as hard as he could. I have no idea what deliberate, heavy panting is about, but he seems to use it anytime he wants attention. Between the panting and drooling I was getting seriously ticked off with him.

I gave him the "go lay down" command, which is actually two commands meaning he is supposed to remove himself to another place and then lay down. He ignored the first command. I gave it again, louder. I didn't want to put down my cheese toast and make him obey, which is the correct way to deal with such a situation. So I got louder and he finally backed up a couple of steps and lay down. He put his nose on his paws and mournfully rolled his big brown eyes at me.

This is when Mamma Kitty, our smallest cat limped over (a whole 'nother story) and lay her head against his for a moment. Since his head is the size of her whole body this made for that picture perfect moment.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

My Hidey Hole

It has been over a year since I last posted anything to my blog. It says a lot about that year that my husband became quite excited when he saw me pick up a couple of How To Write books and take them back to my hidey hole.
The hidey hole developed during my first round of chemotherapy. I only slept an hour or so at a time and then I'd be awake for a couple of hours.
My recliner was hauled into the bedroom and tucked into a corner. My small drawing table joined it so I could have my computer, Kindle, IPad and books at hand. A special lamp was added so I could read during those middle of the night awake times. We had no idea just how long that corner was going to be used.
My first check up after my first round of chemo revealed that my Large B cell lymphoma wasn't defeated. Over the next year I've had to under go a second round of chemo, radiation and blood stem cell transplant.
I'm almost a hundred days out from my transplant. At first I was barely able to take care of my basic needs, but bit by bit I have been able to do more and my chemo brain seems to be getting better as well. I'm told it will take at least two years to recover from the transplant. I am at least beginning to see the possibility that I will be able to resume the things that are important in my life such as my writing, swimming and, someday, taking care of my horses again.
I think the hidey hole will stay though because it is a wonderful spot from which to watch birds and assorted wild life.

Saturday, April 24, 2010

The Most Amazing Year of My Life.

I didn’t know it at the time, but this time last year I began the most incredible journey of my entire life.

The start of this journey was a suggestion by our daughter that we go to Europe for a week after she finished her law school finals.

Discussion and research finally had us settling on Ireland, Dublin specifically.

What none of us knew at the time was that I was in the grip of Large B Cell non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma and had been for a year or more. I knew I was tired all the time and (I thought) my asthma was getting worse all the time.

This was also the time everyone was panicking about so-called “Swine Flu.” With this background I climbed on planes wheezing and coughing constantly. I kept my inhaler at the ready and carefully explained to seat mates I was asthmatic which seemed to relieve their fears.

Our first day in Ireland was wonderful, a mild spring day with alternating sunshine and showers. I loved Ireland and its people. They were amazingly friendly and helpful. Whenever we got lost or confused someone would stop and help us.

The whole trip was a mixture of amazingly wonderful sights, sounds and feelings. And this was in spite of my constant fatigue and problems breathing.

When I got home things got worse until eventually my doctor began ordering tests. The initial results scared me out of my wits. “Masses in the lungs” meant only one thing to me. Lung cancer, which meant I was looking at a life span of weeks or months.

Eventually when enough tests had been done the final diagnosis came in and the cancer was wide spread but treatable. It was even a type that can be cured in some cases. At that point my spirits bounced from deepest, blackest hole they’d ever been in to the highest point I’ve ever known.

People now seem to keep saying “You are so cheerful. Every time I need to hear a cheerful voice I know I can call you and you will cheer me right up no matter what is going on.” I like being this person.

During my various testing and treatments I’ve met some incredibly wonderful people. Doctors, nurses, medical assistants, lab techs are the warriors on the front lines in the battle against cancer. Then there are the patients themselves because here is where you discover who you really are. Are you one who gives up? Someone who expects others to do all the work? A fighter who is going to do everything you can to help defeat this foe? Here is where you find out.

My year has provided me with some goals; I want to help others find out what they can do to help beat cancer. I want to go back to Ireland when I feel good so I can enjoy the home of some of my ancestors even more. I want to share my adventures and discoveries with others. And, as I move forward, discover more goals to strive for.

Friday, April 23, 2010

Making Money

You'll notice a side bar advertising products you can get from Amazon. Amazon now offers the opportunity for people to make money off of them.

Since I spend a lot of money with Amazon I decided to take advantage of this new program. If you click on something in the sidebar and decide to buy it I get a commission off the sale. This is my BIG advertising effort for this business.