Friday, August 23, 2013

Insomnia and Other Love Songs*

*Shamelessly borrowed from Harry Chapin’s album “Sniper and Other Love Songs.”

Yup, the familial insomnia curse has been rearing its ugly head on a regular basis. Why is it that the videotape in my mind starts as soon as I close my eyes?

Summer is going by slowly. A lot of people complain when it goes by quickly but I will be happy to feel the cooler temperatures of autumn. However, I will miss the longer daylight hours.

Apartment life has been good. It is much easier to keep up with the housework and so nice to not have to worry about repairs and house maintenance. Wish we had made the move long ago.

Today I learned that Isabella is partial to the male of our species. I took her to my chiropractic appointment and she was utterly charming to my doctor; smiling and responding positively to what he said to her. When we next went to the cupcake café, she was practically stone faced with one of the owners, a woman. She has known this friend of mine since she was six weeks old! What a piece of work.

There is a commercial that asks if you had the chance to go anywhere in the world but had to leave immediately would you go and where would you go? Himself said he would go to either Athens, the pyramids (I guess he wasn’t taking into consideration that there is major civil unrest there at this time) or Rome. Me? I thought I might like to visit some buddies in England…or Canada….or Malaysia….or…………………………..too many places. As I get anxiety about things like trips, concerts, plays, the having to leave immediately would work to my advantage.

I do believe my country is going to hell in a hand basket (a very old saying). I feel helpless to do anything about it. Any suggestions?

Sending blessings from the great Atlantic northeast, g

Monday, July 1, 2013

Simple Woman's Daybook

The Simple Woman's Daybook


Outside my window...another hot, humid day in the great Atlantic northeast. Everything is green.

I am thinking...about how tricky it is to grandparent/parent a child with autism.

I am thankful...for being rid of all my junk - moving was the perfect opportunity.

In the kitchen...the stove is cold but needs some cooking to be done.

I am wearing...olive green capris and a coral top.

I am creating...a vacation in my mind.

I am stay home the rest of the day.

I am wondering...if it will be possible to take a vacation. It has been several years since the last one.

I am Bible and the newest Glenn Beck book.

I am hoping...for relief.

I am looking forward parents' visit next week.

I am praise God through the storms as well as the good times.

Around the house...except for my son's room, all is pretty neat and clean.

I am I got to where I am today. Oh, those past decisions.

A favorite quote for today..."Let the words of my mouth and the meditations of my heart be acceptable in Your sight, O Lord, my God and my Redeemer."

One of my favorite things...sleeping a bad mood away.

A few plans for the rest of the week: a possible bbq for the fourth of July, sleeping in a couple of days

A peek into my day...not really but I like the picture!

Thursday, May 2, 2013

X Marks the Spot

This is my spot. I surf the web, write blog posts, read, watch tv and visit from my living room (lounge for my British friends) recliner. It is my favorite place to be.

When I am reading, I travel the world, solve crimes, get further education and share my daughter's childhood favorite books with my grandbaby.

When I am sick, I will curl up and lounge around whilst drinking tea and preparing for a nap.

It has stains and has lost some of its cushiness (I do hope to do a quick and easy reupholstering of it).

Yes, X does, indeed, mark MY spot. Do you have a special spot?

Wednesday, May 1, 2013


Wait! It can't be over! I still have four letters. I will NOT be bound by a calendar! I WILL finish the challenge. Hang in there with me, will you??

Monday, April 29, 2013


Pastor Saheed Abedini has been in an Iranian prison for the better part of a year. His crime? Being a Christian. Pastor Abedini is a naturalized citizen of the United States who returned to Iran to help with an orphanage. The authorities say he was trying to convert Muslims to Christianity. Was he doing this? I don't know. As a Christian, he is obliged to preach Christ. He has valiantly maintained his Christian faith in the face of persecution. Is he the only American citizen in this particularly harsh prison? I do not know. However, he is an American and the United States has done precious little to try to gain his freedom. Secretary Kerry has said something but I haven't seen any teeth. People from all parts of the globe have protested the inhumane treatment Pastor Abedini has received. From the beatings, he has internal bleeding. He has been denied medical care and pain medications because he will not renounce his Christianity. If you would like to have your voice heard in defense of Saheed Abedini, please contact the

Saturday, April 27, 2013

Until We Meet Again

Being a Christian, I believe that I will be in heaven for forever. Also there will be those I love who love the Lord Jesus Christ. It used to be that when someone would leave for the mission field or even to another state I would be very sad. Now, although not happy to see them leave, I anticipate spending eternity together! Just over twenty years ago the Billy Graham Crusade came to my area. I was blessed to be able to sing in the chorus. As I walked the concourse of the stadium, I saw a number of people I once knew from churches I had attended. Seeing them was a taste of of the wonderful reunions we will experience in heaven! No more farewells for me. I can now say, "Until we meet again."

Friday, April 26, 2013

Telling the Truth

My post yesterday was reflective of what I have been posting on facebook for the last week or so. Usually, I don't post on hot button items, but murdering children is where I draw the line.

One post I saw had me thinking long and hard before reposting. It had a picture of the back of a baby's head and neck with the neck slit opened where its spinal cord was snipped. Each time I see it I inwardly cringe and it is hard for me to not become depressed.

One of my liberal friends was very vocal in her anger with me for posting this. She has a young son who plays games on her account and doesn't want to chance his seeing something like this.

Am I to censor my "shares" because of this? I won't. There are so many offensive posts that I have to wade through each and every day and I don't say a word. If this offends you hide the posts and download games somewhere other than facebook for your son. Or, delete me as a friend. I won't be offended.

I had to quit being silent. I have to tell the truth.

Thursday, April 25, 2013


Warning: This post is not about sweetness and light. Read only if you have a strong stomach.

There is a trial going on in the USA of a person who has his medical degree. I am loathe to call him "doctor." This monster, Kermit Gosnell, has been systematically killing babies in the third trimester of their mothers' pregnancies. If they were born alive, he snipped their spinal cords or left them to die in shoe boxes or some other less than human fashion.

Whatever happened to the sanctity of human life? Has life become so cheap that this has been happening for years, known by such organizations as Planned Parenthood, and nothing has been done before now?

Speaking before the House of Representatives today, Marlin Stutzman (R-IN) said, "Have forty years of abortion-on-demand seared our national conscience and given us false refuge behind euphemisms like ‘choice'"

Liberal news outlets have barely covered this trial.

Ruth Bell Graham said, ""If God doesn't soon bring judgment upon America, He'll have to go back and apologize to Sodom and Gomorrah!"

Mrs. Graham is right. If this nation doesn't get on its collective knees and repent and ask for God's forgiveness we will surely go down in flames.

Tuesday, April 23, 2013


When Himself and I were approaching our silver anniversary, I knew I wanted a silver wedding band. I had no idea what I wanted it to look like except that I didn't want a traditional band. We went to different stores and he found something he liked but I didn't. I'm the type of person who will look until I find "it" even when I don't know what "it" is. On the internet, I visited many sites looking for my dream ring. Finally, on Christian Book Distributors web site I found it! It is the Hebrew word "Yeshua" which means Jesus. I love it!


Learning something new is a high for me. Asking questions helps me learn.

Big picture people, don't like a lot of questions. I learned this when I took the DISC profile (it's a type of personality profile). I am into details. I want to know very single step it takes to get somewhere.

My sister and I had a hard time getting along all our lives. Actually, she had a hard time getting along with me. Once I realized she is a big picture person and I am a detail person, I learned to not ask her a lot of questions. Now we get along very well.

Are you a big picture person or a detail person?

Monday, April 22, 2013


Although I can not come up with anything for the letter “P,” I will persevere in this challenge.

In trying to come up with a topic, I brainstorm words and this is my list for “P:”





party pooper












Phew! What a pain to try to come up with subjects some time. I spit out my gum, “Patooie!” into the garbage as I thought about my blogging preferences.

“Oh, what a party pooper I would be if I couldn’t complete this challenge,” thought I. What will people think? Would they phone me to give me pardon or would they insist I persevere?

Parenting has proven to be a task of particular difficulty, just like finding a “P” word for my blog entry. Persephone would ask her daddy Zeuss to send a percussion bomb to wake me up!

With all due respect to the office of the presidency, I must not have my reputation impeached by failing.

Persevere, yes, I will persevere.

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Oy Vey

One of my Jewish friends agrees that I am more Jewish than she is. I love Israel and Judaism! A favorite expression is "oy vey" which is often shortened to "oy." Oy vey is Yiddish (a combination of Hebrew and German) and short for "Oy vey iz mir," Oh, woe is me! It can also express excitement. What a perfectly wonderful expression! It expresses what I need to say when I have no other words. Thank you, Children of Israel, for providing this Gentile with such a colorful expression! What expression do you use all the time?

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Never Say Never

When I was a teenager, the last thing I wanted to be was a mother. At age twenty-three, my daughter was born and I realized a space had been filled that I didn't realize was empty. When I was in college, I used to make fun of a certain sorority because they were "those women" who were going for their MRS degree. Being a stay at home mom became something I wanted so badly and finally achieved after becoming disabled. It's worth it. There was no chance that I would ever get divorced. It took only two years and one child for my first husband to seek greener pastures. I never thought I would be able to tolerate what I have tolerated in my life. God's grace has made me strong and given me love where there was none. What have you said you would never do or be but found out you were wrong?


As I have already mentioned, we have been in the process of moving from one home to another. Did you know that belongings clone themselves as you pack them up? It's true! I could have sworn I had less stuff.

Not only have we been moving our belongings but we have been moving our bodies; a lot. Although I have been working out for two years, I still got tendinitis, also known as tennis elbow. Ow. We are exhausted but we have to keep on cleaning out the old place before the closing date.

What's amazing is that I don't feel anything but relief living an apartment after having lived in a house for nineteen years. It feels like a great weight has been lifted off my shoulders. I broke down briefly last week - only once - and then I was over it. No more worrying about where the money will come from for the roof, the foundation, the overgrown juniper bushes that hurt to touch.

Yes, I feel relief. ~heavy sigh~ Good bye, old house. You served us well.

Tuesday, April 16, 2013


I love to learn new things. Sometimes it isn't a subject I would have chosen like when I had to look up "gangrene." There are two forms, wet and dry; wet, hours to a day or two to live, dry, much longer to live.

If there was nothing to learn I would be so bored. Being a perpetual student sounds so good to me as long as I didn't have to take exams or write papers.

Being called a warehouse of useless information didn't ring true to me. I believe that, instead, I am well rounded in my knowledge. (Yes, someone did call me that.) Maybe you aren't interested in what interests me but that doesn't matter, right?

Did you know that bones have bendability? If they didn't, you would break them all the time. Learned that from a Kathy Reichs novel. She also taught me about mitochondrial DNA. Very interesting to me.

What have you learned lately?

Monday, April 15, 2013

Kalamazoo and Tigger, Too

Makes no sense. I know. My brain and body are fried from moving (did you know that boxes can clone themselves?). I was thinking about the funny names some places have. Kalamazoo (Michigan) was a Native American name that the settlers twisted to sound "normal" to them.

How about Tightwad, Missouri. Legend has it that someone was shortchanged there and talked badly about the place evoking this curse of a name.

Santa Claus, Indiana is one place you never have to worry about taking down the Christmas lights.

One of my favorites is Truth or Consequences, New Mexico. Seems that it was named after a 1950's radio show.

Cool, California...need I say more? Actually, it was named for a traveling preacher but I'll bet natives would say otherwise.

Any "cool" sounding towns by you?

Sunday, April 14, 2013


Things that bring me joy:

that my granddaughter loves me like I loved my grandmother - a lot

when I get a card in the mail from a friend just because

hearing children laugh

worshiping God

when I realize people like me as much as I like them (an inferiority complex is tough to get over)

knowing when I am in God's will

clearly hearing the Holy Spirit

Jesus' being risen from the dead

the Father's love

What brings you joy?

Saturday, April 13, 2013


When you saw the title of this entry, what did you think? One of my top ten favorite movies is The Princess Bride. It is a quirky, cleverly written movie. Inigo Montoya is a gifted swordsman bent on avenging his father's death. He practices saying, "Hello. My name is Inigo Montoya. You killed my father. Prepare to die." He is clever: "He's right on top of us. I wonder if he is using the same wind we are using." He is fun: Inigo Montoya: That Vizzini, he can *fuss*. Fezzik: Fuss, fuss... I think he like to scream at *us*. Inigo Montoya: Probably he means no *harm*. Fezzik: He's really very short on *charm*. Inigo Montoya: You have a great gift for rhyme. Fezzik: Yes, yes, some of the time. Vizzini: Enough of that. Inigo Montoya: Fezzik, are there rocks ahead? Fezzik: If there are, we all be dead. Vizzini: No more rhymes now, I mean it. Fezzik: Anybody want a peanut? Vizzini: DYEEAAHHHHHH. He is part of one of the funniest movies I have ever seen. Have you seen The Princess Bride?

Thursday, April 11, 2013

How Ya Doin'?

How ya doin? Hi. Howdy. Hello there. What's up? How are you? Hey. Aloha. All are forms of greeting in the United States of America.

People from outside of the area think that people from New Jersey and New York only say, "How ya doin'?" No, not everyone. That affectation doesn't apply to anyone but my son who seems to desperately want to sound regional!

Me? I tend to say, "Hey," or "Hiya." Occasionally, "Greetings." I know. I am weird.

How about where you live? What is the usual greeting?

Tuesday, April 9, 2013


When I was a kid, "groovy" was a neato word to use. Lately, I find myself regressing in my vocabulary and "groovy" or some derivative of it is front and center.

"How do you want your hair cut?" "I'm grooving the extra length," I said to my niece who is my hairstylist extraordinaire.

"Oh, that new dress is groovy, Isabella! I dig it!" What must she think?!

I can't think of a better word to express myself in this way. Can you?

Monday, April 8, 2013

Friendly Advice

When cooking/baking, clean as you go along. Mom told me this and it took me a long time to follow this advice out of pure persnicketyness. (Isn't it amazing how smart your parents get as you get older?)

When telling a child to do something, make sure you let them know what will happen if they do not obey you...and follow through. A wise counsellor taught me this.

James 1:5 If any of you lacks wisdom, he should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to him. (NIV) God said this one.

Date for at least two years before considering getting engaged (this one is for younger folk). Then stay engaged for at least a year before getting married. This one is from me. I had found that relationships usually end after two years if they are not meant to be.

If you are going to be involved in a blog challenge whilst in the middle of moving write as many blog entries before the beginning of the challenge. Also mine!

Any good advice you can share?


Years ago, I learned that Dr. James Dobson's father's tombstone read "He Prayed." I remember thinking that that was an amazing legacy.

I have hoped that mine might read "She Encouraged" or "Encourager." It is a goal of mine to be seen in this light. What greater gift can I give than this; to be able to lift another's spirits and help them see the light at the end of the tunnel that afflicts them.

What characteristic would you like to be remembered for?

Sunday, April 7, 2013

Dragging My Feet

Here it is Sunday and I am just writing Friday's challenge. Talk about dragging one's heals. It is hard to blog "on demand" but it gets me in gear.

It's not only writing that causes me to drag my heals. If someone bugs me to do something it probably won't get done in a timely manner. Call it passive/aggressive, stubbornness, childishness, whatever. I don't like to be pushed.

Also, confrontation is something I tend to put off. Blessedly, I have learned that it needs to get done quickly or my imagination will make things so much worse. So, I'm quicker about it than I used to be.

When I was in college, I would cram for exams. I tried to study daily but got most of my knowledge memorized in the last few days before an exam. Also, when it came to writing papers, I would organize it in my head for days and then type it out the night before it was due. I've read that this is not uncommon and is one of two ways of writing papers. The other is to do it all on paper one step at at time taking one's time.

Do you have anything you know you drag your heals on? Tell me about it.

Friday, April 5, 2013

Dropping Names

Psst...come here. A little closer. I've got something to tell you. I once met Cliff Robertson! Yup, Spiderman's Uncle Ben! He was a famous actor who left this world last year.

Oh, and my late father-in-law was a cameraman for The Honeymooners and Soupy Sales. When Soupy would talk to "Uncle Sal," he was talking to my father-in-law. He met many stars and public figures.

I have met Don Imus a couple of time - well, when I was a teenager. Also, I sang in a rock band when I was a teen. The band was called Back Rhodes. (Don't ask.)

However, the most famous, wonderful superstar I have ever met is, ready for this? Jesus Christ! Yup, forty years ago I made His personal acquaintance! Giving my life to Him broke the chains that had held me close to this world.

Yes, of all the people I have ever met, the Son has never let me down, always been available and has never witheld love from me. I always know where I stand with Him. You see, I am royalty because my Father is a King and His son is the Prince of Peace! Shhh.....oh,never mind, tell everyone! Shout it from the mountain tops! If you need peace, here is how to find it:

Let me know what you think! g

Wednesday, April 3, 2013


Finding out that dark chocolate is actually a health food rocked my world. Yes, I said DARK chocolate - the darker the better. Milk chocolate? Nah. White chocolate? Oh, pul-eez. It isn't even chocolate but basically milk, cocoa butter (has no cocoa) and sugar along with flavorings.

Amazingly, chocolate is an antioxidant which means it gets rid of free radicals which cause disease and aging. Heck, chocolate is even better for you than blueberries, green tea and pomegrates! All this goodness can lower your blood pressure, cholesterol, fight cancer, leap tall buildings in a single bound. You catch my meaning.

There is more but do you really need convincing beyond this?! Dark chocolate is satisfying in small amounts. It will take care of your seet tooth with little damage to your waistline.

I'll do what I have to to stave off aging and illness. Bring on the dark stuff.

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Bye, Bye Baby

As I mentioned in a previous post, after nineteen years in one house, we are moving. Today, with the help of a dear friend, I went through all the pictures I had stored in my bedroom closet.

When I say "bye, bye baby" I really mean it. My friend told me (didn't suggest but told me!) to separate the pictures and make a box for each of my two children (this included baby pictures). "You took the pictures for them to have memories so give them the pictures!" Have I mentioned that I have brilliant friends? It took more than two hours but it got done. My daughter said, "How can you get rid of pictures of your kids?" Translated that means, "I thought you would hold on to as much as possible so I don't have to." I have learned that one has to be merciless when moving. There is very little room for sentimentality. Hey, it's all going to burn some day, right? blessings, g

Monday, April 1, 2013

A to Z Challenge!

Another A to Z Challenge! Participating this year will either push me over the edge or keep me sane as we are preparing to move.

A is for autism. Of course it is! April is Autism Awareness Month in the USA and April 2nd is World Autism Awareness Day.

Frankly, I don’t know of anyone who isn’t aware of autism. I would like to change this to Autism Education Month. Do you know the difference between a tantrum and a “meltdown?” Here you go:

All people with autism are geniuses! From what I read, 10% of the general population has genius I.Q.’s. In the autism community, it is thought that 20% do. Not exactly everyone but a significant number.

People with autism don’t like to be touched. This is true for some but, for others, like my precious granddaughter, it is not. She loves to be held and to show and receive affection.

Don’t vaccinate your child! I don’t agree with this. Work with your pediatrician when it comes to a vaccination schedule. It doesn’t have to be done all at once. Some can be left out. You can have your child’s blood tested before boosters to see if they even need them.

Most importantly, learn the signs of autism:

No big smiles or other warm, joyful expressions by six months or thereafter

No back-and-forth sharing of sounds, smiles or other facial expressions by nine months

No babbling by 12 months

No back-and-forth gestures such as pointing, showing, reaching or waving by 12 months

No words by 16 months

No meaningful, two-word phrases (not including imitating or repeating) by 24 months

Any loss of speech, babbling or social skills at any age

Bless you and, hopefully, will see you tomorrow. gail

Friday, March 22, 2013

Breaking Up is Hard to Do

No, not Himself and me. We are moving and moving is not for the faint of heart. We have been in our house for over nineteen years but it has become too expensive for us to be home “owers.”

Today, a friend helped me go through some things that were stored in the boiler room/basement. Everything is being divided into keep/donate/toss. After forty-five minutes, we had three garbage bags full and enough dust to keep us sneezing.

Overwhelmed doesn’t even begin to explain how I am feeling. There is so much to do and so little time to do it (closing date is April 23rd). Even so, I am happy to be purging. The older I get the less clutter I want around me. Local friends, stop laughing! I know I tend to have a clutter problem but I am trying to reform!

A very important tip I want to impart to you is to not allow a spouse who is over sentimental to be a part of the purging. Himself doesn’t want to get rid of ANYTHING! We have black bags so he can’t see what is being thrown out.

If I could give one piece of advice it would be to never bring something new into your home without getting rid of something else. If you haven’t used it in a year get rid of it. If you don’t love it get rid of it. Oh, that was three pieces of advice. All three will help you to not have the overwhelming task I now face.

One of the biggest gifts my mother ever gave to my siblings and me was to get rid of everything in the ways mentioned above. She had seen a relative die and leave a mess of a home for the kids to take care of and she didn’t want her children to go through the same.

Another thing Mom and Dad did was to make advanced directives and living wills and to give us copies. They have told us what they want done after their deaths (cremation, no wake) and chose the child they thought would be able to handle the estate the best to be executor of their wills. When their times come, we won’t have any guess work.

Don’t make the mistakes I have made. Streamline your “stuff” and don’t let it take over your life!

Blessings all, g

Friday, March 1, 2013

I Don't Do Pink and Various Other Things About Us

I don’t do pink. Pastel pink that is. I dig hot pink. Especially with lime green. Yup. Lime green makes a lot of things look good!

Tuesday, January 15, 2013


Today, my boy hugged me. “…overwhelmed, “ he said, “So overwhelmed.” Actually, my boy needed his mom to hug him. And I did promising that there were more where they had come from.

Lately, I have been thinking a lot about how my son is a stranger to me; about his hidden life. He is 23 years old and there is so much I do not know about him. When did that happen? When did he become a stranger?

So, too, is my daughter. I probably know a little more about her but that is because she is 32 and a mother. We relate because we are both mothers. However, we are so different.

We think of having “babies.” We do not think about having defiant teenagers. We do not think of having 23 and 32 year old children. Are they any less our children as they grow older? At 56, I am still my mother’s child. The Girl and The Boy will always be my children.

There are probably a lot of things I don’t want to know about my children. I feel anxiety just contemplating their secrets. There are many things I hope my mom doesn’t know about the younger me. I wish it wasn’t so but it is.

Where am I going with this? I don’t know. Just feeling the need to try to work out what I am feeling. My children still need me. I need their help. Maybe there will be a symbiosis some day. ~heavy sigh~ Some day.