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Saturday, December 31, 2011

Sweet Ending to a Blessed Year

This is it... The end of 2011. As I sit here recalling the events of this year, my heart is overwhelmed with gratitude. Time actually does mend, and although scars may remain, perhaps they will begin to fade with the passing of time. At the beginning of this year, I was hopeful that the fog would continue to lift leaving pieces I could recognize as the old me... It did, and I have and I'm thankful for every little sliver of myself that has been restored. We just got home from an evening of laughing with friends, really nothing rings the old year out like hysterical belly laughing that gives you a headache. The ending to 2011 has been sweet. All of our kids are back in the same state, everyone is healthy and enjoying life. Those are blessings you should never take for granted. I am enriched by those around, and blessed beyond what I deserve. May the beginning of 2012 be as comforting as the end to 2011.

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Sleep Eating Through Christmas

I lay in bed Christmas Eve night, not listening for sleigh bells, but listening to my stomach roll and rumble from eating approximately 4 cups of raw sugar cookie dough. Another perfect example for why I should not bake.... Nothing ever makes it to the oven, at least not in one piece. How is it even possible for a cookie that is so bland tasting when cooked, to be so absolutely to die for delicious in it's raw form? This is a question that has haunted me for years. As if 4 cups of raw sugar cookie dough isn't bad enough, I have to top mine with butter cream frosting. To my credit I only ate about 2 cups of the frosting, but that was because my stomach was already starting to swell from the cookie dough.  All evening long I followed my family from room to room with my tray of sugar cookies...  I implored them to eat the cookie because I knew if they didn't, I would. All three of the kids sat there, with their Dad's skinny genes pumping through their veins and snubbed my cookies except for a few bite (Hey! Don't judge my cookies, they were good). Sure enough, Christmas Eve night I was so jacked up on sugar I couldn't sleep. I popped an Ambien and the next morning the cookies were still there.... But the frosting had  been licked clean from each and every one of them... I was guilty of sleep eating AGAIN! I made myself get out of the house yesterday for a 7 mile walk. I figure I could have walked all the way to Arkansas and back and still not walked off those freakin cookies. Maybe, if I'm lucky, I'll get a bad case of fat eating worms from the flour. The problem with this theory is.... I have never been lucky. Oh ugh!

Kind of Like Old Times....

Christmas has really been a difficult time for me the last few years. With my older two kids grown and gone (in some cases gone as in out of the country gone) it was difficult for me to maintain the traditional holiday
feel around the house. Everything seemed out of sync. Don't get me wrong, I am tickled pink that my children are thriving in their adult years. I'm happy to see them fulfilling their dreams and going on adventures I would have never even dreamed.
I'm not one who usually struggles with change, but I am not ashamed to admit that I have struggled with the nearly empty nest syndrome. Last Christmas I pretty much
stayed in a fetal position.
I was starring

the one year anniversary of my fall in the face and had enough residual side effects that I was in complete panic mode about facing New Year's as a different person (I'm still not real crazy about the
new me). The year before that we just packed up the the boys and literally ran away from home. We ran to the mountains of Colorado along with our best friends and their families and enjoyed probably the best Christmas ever just pretending the rest of the world didn't exist. This year my daughter was back in the plains of Oklahoma, my son had finally decided that maybe God didn't call him to a life of singleness, so his beautiful girlfriend joined us and for the first Christmas in a long time we were all together. The last few holidays we served at the homeless shelter but this year we had a family dinner with my brother and his wife and my parents. It was nice to have everyone together under the same roof for a change.... Kind of like old times.

Friday, December 23, 2011

Unexpected Christmas Treats are Just Food for Thought

Yesterday I lost the diamond out of my wedding ring. Everyone in our department thought I was having severe back problems because I was walking around all hunched over trying to find my stunningly large stone (lol). One of the guys whipped out his pocket sized flashlight (probably from his pocket protector)to aid in the search Despite me roaming the office on my hands and knees we found nothing except piles
of glitter from my blingy Christmas ornaments and possibly from some of my inappropriately gaudy fashion wear. I knew I should have worn my contacts! This morning I continued my search in my office. I dug through the files I worked on yesterday, scavenged underneath my desk and trolled the nether regions of my one hundred year old desk chair. I peeled back the cushions of my chair to find an
array of crumbs, screws, paperclips, staples and even a well preserved Cheeto. Not far into the journey the thought occured to me that this chair which had held God only knows how many people over the decades, with it's flattened cushions and squeaky wheels, also held the butt juice of each and every one of those people... And that my friend is the juicy food for thought on this the Friday before Christmas day. Merry Christmas to all and to all a good night.

Monday, December 19, 2011

30 Years into Forever

Today I'm 30 years into Forever with my husband. A lifetime to love him is not nearly long enough. He took my dreams and turned them into reality.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

The Feng Shui of Memories

I wouldn't say I'm comfortable with the stage of life I'm in right now. It's kind of like being in a perpetual state of limbo, no little kids at home, no grandchildren to spoil, just kind of blah. Life seemed more natural when I was juggling home, husband, a job and three kids. Now, I feel like a boat with no sail, a ship with no shore, a kite with no crossbars to keep me from collapsing. I have a friend who became a first time grandparent last week. It's exciting to watch the next phase of the journey begin. When the kids were little, we had traditions. The Easter Bunny came at Easter, in the fall we had a pumpkin carving party, and of course Christmas time was full of wonder that can only be seen through the eyes of a child. My oldest son told me a couple of weeks ago that we no longer had any "Feng Shui" in our holidays. I couldn't agree more! This Stella had lost her groove, misplace the Yin that went to her Yang and couldn't find the Jo in her Mo if her life depended on it. So, this year I'm trying to get that "Feng Shui" flowing again. First on the list was what I hope will be a new tradition...Girls Spa Day. My son's girlfriend will be spending Christmas with us. I'm super excited about getting to spend time with her, not only does she seem really sweet, but she makes my son light up like a Christmas tree which just sets this Momma's heart on fire. I wanted her to be more comfortable Christmas by getting to know her a little beforehand. What better way to get to know someone than to get naked with them??? LOL, just kidding (kind of). I booked a girls day at a spa for myself, my daughter and my son's girlfriend. It was wonderful. The spa was tranquil with dim lights, wonderful soothing smells, and soft gentle music. We all had one hour facials, and one hour massages... We were happy limp noodles when we were done. I believe "Spa Day" has put the Feng back in our Shui as we head towards the Christmas holiday. Great traditions create great memories and great memories bring Feng Shui to all things.

Monday, December 5, 2011

Glass is Full

One thing I can say for sure about my weekend.... It wasn't boring. Friday night was our Christmas party for work. We had a great time eating wonderful food, listening to amazing jazz, receiving service awards,
winning prizes and watching Reflections the local High School performing choir sing and dance. I was up bright and early Saturday morning preparing for the wedding shower for another one of our boys. My husband (who is a wonderful sport) helped me get the room ready at the church and kept me calm and collected although I'm not really sure how he does it. It was well after two when we got home from the shower and all I wanted was a quick nap before heading to the Bedlam party. The OSU/OU game is a big deal. As my
husband says, OSU is the Rodney Dangerfield of football.... We just can't get any respect. We may not have gotten any respect Saturday but one thing for sure is we kicked some OU Sooner butt in a big way. Yes, I understand that OU has won Bedlam more times than OSU but we're living in the present people, and in the here and now, we are good! It was late when we got home from the football game so we slept in Sunday morning... That is we slept in until Sunday afternoon. It felt so good not to need to get up and have to be anywhere at any certain time. Later in the afternoon, I pulled out my walking shoes, harnessed up the horse
and headed out for our 2.5 hour walk. After the walk I threw in a little grocery shopping, dinner making and then bath taking to wrap up a weekend that was absolutely more full than empty... It's a very good feeling.