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Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Pillow Top Princess


As a woman I have the need to feel in control. I'm not a control freak but I like to think I have things "taken care of". Since New Year's Day I haven't felt in control at all. A terrible fall has left me with a fuzzy head, terrible headaches, a stiff neck and a little disconnected to the world around me. The fatigue has been overwhelming!! I am able to work all day but by 5:15 I am snuggling under the comforter with my kitty held tightly to my chest. My husband has been a saint!!! He brings me dinner in bed, has kept the kitchen clean and hoovered over me like a mother hen. Sometimes I pretend to get a little aggravated with him but it's not really him, it's my body I'm a little mad at. I might be able to handle being "down" for a couple of days but geez, this has rocked on for almost 4 weeks. One of the more disturbing aspects of having a concussion is the memory, or shall I say lack of it. I can be in mid-sentence and totally drift off into another dimension, only to drift back in a couple of seconds later. Today I was in Walmart headed for the item I needed to purchase when I completely forgot where I was going, I mean the object was practically in front of me. It makes me feel loopy or loopier than usual! I'm really hoping people haven't noticed the vacant look I get sometimes when I'm trying to remember what I'm doing and why I'm here. Oh well, time heals all wounds. I'm ready to get my groove back, find my mojo and get back in the swing of things. Until then I guess I'll just play pillow top princess and enjoy the perks of the predicament.

Friday, January 22, 2010

Once


Once lost, some things can
Never be found
Once opened, some things can
Never be closed
Once held, some things can
Never be released
Once thought, some things can
Never be forgotten
Once broken, some things can
Never be repaired
Once loved, some hearts will
Never regret
Once!

Thursday, January 21, 2010

A Memory That's Meant To Be Captured.


I've been scrapbooking as a hobby before scrapbooking was cool. When I was in highschool you couldn't really buy scrapbooking stuff so I just used what I could find... old greeting cards, stuff like that. Several years ago I decided to get caught up on my scraping so I began with my wedding and worked my way up to present day. It was a long, happy, sad, expensive process. Since then I've tried to keep up with my memories and work on capturing more. My boys are not posers, they hate posing for family pics and would just like for me to put-the-camera-away! I know they don't understand it, but those scrapbooks are precious memories just waiting be be reviewed.....
A couple of years ago we had 2 major floods within a couple of weeks. I had stored my scrapbooks in plastic totes and placed them in the basement because there were so many of them. The totes would have been perfect if they hadn't began to float and then fall over causing several of the lids to pop off ruining years and years of memories. That was a heartbreaking loss!!! Nevertheless there are more memories to be captured and I make sure to try to capture them all. New Year's Day is one of my favorite holidays. The reason it is so special is because we spend the entire day with our friends and their kids playing games, eating, laughing and telling stories. We start planning next year the evening of New Year's Day and look forward to it ALL YEAR LONG. This year I brought both of my cameras along with my tripod. I always try to get a few group shots before the end of the day (that's is without a doubt all of the guys favorite part of the day). Almost everyone was there when we arrived. A bunch of people were in the den watching T.V., the kids were in the cellar playing video games while the women were... you got it, around the kitchen table just talking. My friends house is really cute. They have done a lot of work on it including building a sitting room over the cellar. In the cellar her teenager has a "Man Cave" where the kids play video games. It's really neat because the cellar door is flush with the floor, it's almost like having a hidden door in the library. Since we had so much food there was a table in the sitting room with desserts and drinks... just to make things flow better. The cellar door was open and kids had been running up and down and occasionally an adult male would wonder down then come back up thinking to themselves..... that's a really neat "Man Cave", I mean it was written all over their face (truly they never grow up). Okay, bare with me cause this is where things get fuzzy and I'm going on here say. Apparently I decided to quench my thirst so I got up and mosied over to the drink table at which time I felt I needed to add something to the conversation going on at the kitchen table. Unfortunately I turned around to add my two cents and when I did I stepped into the gaping hole in the floor where the "Man Cave" happened to be. The fall must have been quite a tumble because I remember none of it. Next thing I vaguely remember is pain and people around me but mostly just pain. What I know from what I'm told is I was taken to the local hospital where they did test and stuff that annoy you (like cutting off your favorite jeans and your Victoria Secret under things... said with much bitterness) when you don't feel well and then they shipped me to the City. I'm not really sure where the camera comes into play here but I'm thinking that maybe it was in the City because I don't think anyone was interested in capturing anything up until that point. The best thing about having best friends is they are the Best!! They know you and they know what you like and don't like. The Girls went to my house to get clothes for me and most importantly they got my make-up tool box (yes it seriously takes that much work to make me presentable). When I got to the hospital in the City one of them, knowing I would insist on capturing the moment had I been conscious, brought a camera. First of all this is one New Year's Day that none of us will forget, even those of us who don't really remember it. Second of all, it is what I would have wanted. I don't remember them putting my lip gloss on me (that is a true friend that won't even take a picture of you without your lip gloss on) but I do remember one of the nurses or doctors telling my friend, who was holding the camera, that she couldn't believe she had her posing for a picture. I'm glad she did! She got some really good shots of everyone spending their New Year's Day in the waiting room and some really bad shots of me looking exactly like death warmed over (seriously warmed over). I have a tendency to make light of almost everything. There isn't hardly anything that should be taken too seriously. My husband however, does not feel the same. He hasn't appreciated me making light of my near death experience but like I tell him "I'm still here, I haven't gone anywhere". He vows however that this is not something he will ever look back on with any humor, "because I thought you were dead in my arms". They kept me over night and let me go home in the morning. I do remember getting a call from the Girls who had spent the night in the City, asking me what kind of Starbucks I wanted. You betcha! They knew exactly how to perk me up and get me going again. One of my Girls asked me the other day if I remember asking her in the ER if she had a penis. Nope, I certainly don't recall that. She said she told me that the reason I was alive was because "The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much, James 5:16) and she had been praying really hard. That was my response...."Do you have a penis I don't know about?". She said she did but not to tell her husband cause he hadn't found it yet! I don't care who you are that's funny and it's all is a memory meant to be captured. I'm pretty sure I've gotten all the crapy stuff behind me for this year and nothing but smooth sailing ahead. Happy New Year!!! Go out and make some memories.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Magical Moments And Night Skiing Adventures


For Christmas this year we decided to break from tradition and do something different. Our family along with 2 other families went skiing the week of Christmas. I've always wanted a white Christmas and figured that going someplace like Colorado was my best bet at getting one. This was my 4th time to go skiing and actually I didn't do too bad. I came back with all my body parts in place which is always a plus. As I've said before my friends accuse me of looking like a "crotchety old woman" when I ski. I have also been accused of being the only person that skies in such a way that it actually looks like I'm skiing uphill. Unfortunately I cannot deny either of these accusations but for some reason every time I go skiing I believe that I will have greatly improved over the last time. This year I was determined to ski at least two days. I just had this feeling that the skiing gene located somewhere deep inside of me was going to show itself and I would amaze not just myself but everyone else.... I was wrong! In all honesty the first day went really well. I wasn't nervous, I didn't fall a lot but by the end of the afternoon I was pretty exhausted and decided to head to the house. Several of us were planning on skiing that night but by 3:00 I had decided that didn't sound like as much fun as I thought it did. I arrived at the house and literally stumbled into the jacuzzi like a drunken sailor. I'm not sure what it is about skiing but it absolutely wears me out!! After my jacuzzi, some fabulous dinner and a good nap I didn't feel half bad. In fact I felt revived enough to take a stab at that night skiing. I imagined myself up there on the mountain skiing by moonlight and just admiring the stars. I didn't think much about it at the time but the gondola ride up the mountain took a lot longer than I expected. But I had been assured that the trail down was all green and I wouldn't have any difficulty making it to the bottom. The first 10-15 minutes were just as magical as I had imagined. The slopes weren't crowded, my kids were doing fine and I was enjoying myself.... That was until I hit a nice packed icy patch. My style of skiing is what they call snow plowing. The problem with snow plowing is it doesn't work if you have nothing to "plow" into. When I hit ice and am unable to plow my way through I have a tendency to, ummm, pick up speed and lose control. So although I may have been willing to break our Christmas tradition, I didn't see the need, nor have the skill to break my skiing traditions. Lucky for me when I fell ever so gracefully, I fell on my rump; once on my rump I did something I've never done before while skiing.... continue to pick up speed and wasn't able to stop. My Mom had lovingly told me right before I left for our trip to be careful because she had a premonition that something bad would happen. Not only did she have this premonition but she said Daddy also had it. Now that's scary, cause in my world Daddy's don't usually get premonitions. That's a gift primarily held for Mothers. So, I'm sliding down this moonlit mountain gaining speed as I head for two teenagers who had made the mistake of falling in my path. The words of my Mother were echoing through my mind much like the Arctic breeze was gently wisping through my hair. I braced for impact as I headed for the two kids (who in my opinion had no business night skiing), but nothing happened. By some miracle I missed the teenagers and continued to slide losing poles and various equipment on my way down. As I slid I kept telling myself that I would not let my Mom's premonition come true! I'm not sure exactly what stopped me but eventually (which seemed to take several minutes) I came to a grinding halt. A quick check of body parts found everything to be in working order. The big motivator in not falling down for me is the absolute enormous amount of energy that it takes me to get back on my feet. I still haven't gotten the knack of gathering myself together and returning to a standing position without it looking like a one person three ring circus. Finally, I was able to return to my crotchety old woman stance and resume skiing, but this time with much more caution. As I continued to ski the more caution I used. The fall kept replaying over and over in my mind along with my Mother's words. To make it worse my shins and other parts of my body were screaming with pain and I began to huff and puff like the big bad wolf in the story Three Little Pigs. A friend of mine just happen to ski up beside me as I took another tumble. As he attempted to help me up, my arm that held the only remaining pole I had left came around and socked him in the mouth with a bang. I was just happy to be in one piece once again and didn't seem to notice him standing there holding his mouth. As I adjusted my stuff and prepared to move on he said something like "Oh my gosh! That really hurt". I looked at him with what must have been a blank look and asked him what hurt because... duh, I was fine. He explained to me that I had slammed him in the mouth with my pole, to which I kind of shrugged and muttered "I'm sorry". It wasn't that I didn't care, it's just that I didn't really think I had hit him that hard until he looked at me with tears in his eyes and said "I think you chipped my tooth". Now I'll admit that I did feel bad about practically knocking his teeth out, but I was exhausted and sore and just wanted to finish the magical moonlit ski experience and get back to that dang jacuzzi. I was feeling some fussiness rise up inside me and I was ready to go to the house. He hung around with me until I was ready to continue then he skied with me to the next landing where our friends were waiting for us. In full huff puff mode I asked how much further to the bottom of the mountain. I mean my gosh we had been up there for what seemed like hours already and the end had to be near... Wrong. This is the point where everything went south. He looked at me stone cold (puffy lip and all) and said something to the effect of "Are you kidding? We aren't even nearly to the half way point". Immediately the whole "some fussiness" was replaced by sheer panic. Upon seeing my face the others finally turned around and headed to the bottom. I shot back at him "You have got to be kidding me", because he has a tendency to enjoy pushing certain peoples buttons just to see their very expressive reactions. "No Jac, I'm serious. We're not even to the half way point yet". It's at this point where the true core of me is revealed; I don't usually even pretend to be remotely athletic, competitive or even tough. If people want to think of me as a big sissy wuss then I am totally fine with that, because for the most part that pretty much hits the nail on the head, cause I would much rather shop for shoes than to sweat in any way shape or form. But when it comes to skiing I keep thinking I'll be able to conquer this thing. So I'm standing there on the magical moonlit mountain top thinking to myself... "You're going to die", "Everybody will be laughing at you" and "Frankly, my dear I don't give a darn". I tell him between huffs and puffs to go on without me I would just take my skies off and walk down. He doesn't know this but I saw a glimmer of laughter in his eyes until he realized that I was completely serious. He stood there weighing his options and finally realized that I wasn't faking the whole "I can't possibly ski another inch" drama. This is where he changes from the big brother that loves to torment his baby sister mask to that of a caring concerned friend who seriously wanted to help me mask. Trust me that change meant more to me than he will ever know. While I stood there in "Crotchety old woman" mode, hyperventilating loud enough to cause an avalanche he asked if I would be able to put my skies between his and let him snow plow us down together. The first thing I wanted to know is if he knew how to do that and if it would work. He knew it would work but had to admit he had never done it before, but hey we didn't have a lot of options so I agreed. He let me rest for a minute then he instructed me where to put my skies and asked if I was ready to which I huffed out a yea. To my amazement he began to ski off leaving me behind. I just kinda looked after him like.... "What the heck?". He turned around and kind of tilted his head and said.... (this cracks me up) "Umm Jac, you're going to have to hold on to my waist in order for this to work". Houston, we have a problem!!! Okay, granted we have been friends for a long time, 18 years to be exact. Our kids have grown up together and his wife is one of my very best friends. We have spent many holidays together, so we are what some would consider really good friends. But just to get this straight, he is male, I am female, and all of our kids were there. Even in all the "I can't ski another inch" drama I wasn't sure if this would be considered appropriate. My question back to him was "What will people think?" He's a pretty calm quiet guy, but I had the slight feeling that I was pushing him to his limit. After all he was capable of night skiing down a magical mountain and enjoying the views and had been looking forward to the whole experience all by himself, so my crisis along with the whole moral dilemma of me not wanting to touch him, didn't make a lot of sense at this point. He (again in my opinion) kind of gritted his teeth and growled "They will probably think I am trying to get you down the mountain"! So... once again I agreed to allow him (like it was some kind of honor) to snow plow me down the mountain except this time I understood that I would have to hang onto his waist. I secretly prayed no one would see or worse yet video the whole episode as he already had one of my stunts on video (I have plans to confiscate this at some point), I didn't want him to have a whole DVD collection of my Lucille Ball moments. Anyway, I grabbed and he took off with me hanging on for dear life. When we began to move I began to hyperventilate again. He heard the commotion and asked if I was okay that's when I had to tell him that actually I felt a little like throwing up. We would ski a while and then stop and rest a while then ski a while and rest a while. At one point while we were resting and I was choking back the vomit he told me to turn around and look at the view. There it was! Below the town had an amber glow to it and it looked absolutely magical. I love the mountains, I love the snow, but actually I just wanted DOWN! I hate that at that moment things weren't magical like they were suppose to be. Eventually we did make it down, in one piece I might add. If it hadn't been for him they would have found me the next morning frozen to death in the fetal position. My lack of ability and my physical weakness prevented me from enjoying the evening and completely distracted me from the beauty of the moment. When I got back to the house I was terribly upset by what I saw as a failure. I felt like not only had I ruined my big adventure by being a wimp, but I had also prevented someone else from getting to enjoy his adventure. My husband was quick to remind me that I had accomplished something that I had been wanting to do and even though it wasn't pretty, I did make it off the mountain and I would have memories of the evening. So even though the experience wasn't ideal, it was memorable and now looking back on it, it was pretty dang magical as well.

Life has a way of distracting me from the beauty that lies all around me. Often I find myself on a perfectly lovely day being distracted by bills that need to be paid, a house that needs to be cleaned or some other crisis that steps in and steals my joy. If I'm not careful I'll be so distracted by my difficulties that I literally can't see the blessings God has poured into my life every single day. I want to have magical moments every day and you know what... I do have magical moments in every day if only I'll get my head out of my crisis (that's not really the word I wanted to use in this sentence but it works just as well I guess) long enough to notice them. For a split second that night the beauty of my surroundings replaced the pain of all my muscles. That night the kindness of a friend changed how my evening was destined to turn out. How many times do I look straight through the beauty and blessing to only see the negative? More often than I care to admit. The shocking reality of how much I take things for granted has hit me right in the face this year. My reality check has resulted in me appreciating every magical moment that comes my way regardless of the pain involved... and that in itself is a blessing.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Once You Were Mine


The future we hold
Not in our hands
The passing of time fades
Like grains of fine sand
But though time has not
To us been a friend
Our hearts are united
From here till the end
Just know in your heart
The truth I have spoken
From fragments of pain
Of a heart that's been broken
And forever regardless of
Distance or time
I'll forever remember
That once you were mine



Mission Statement



The last half of my life story will not be written in tears of remorse or regret. Tears cannot change the past, they certainly don't heal the pain of the present and they won't make the future a better place to be. The last half of my life will be written with joy that flows from my heart and the hearts of others. Joy is no longer an option, it is a full fledged requirement. If you're traveling with me you better find your joy.