Monday, July 31, 2006

Weigh in Day

Well, today I must face the music of a Summer Cookout and who knows how many glasses of wine. Face it I will since that's the new me. I'm hoping for no gain...that will please me. A gain will stab but I will have to fess up that it was earned. That pulled pork thing that my man made was too good not to eat but boy howdy did it ever swell up the foot and fingers....I'll be blaming the gain on water weight. I was good all week otherwise and will be the week coming and so .. slow but steady wins the race. My grandmother told me that years and years ago and I didn't like it then, still don't but it is so true. Maybe that's part of what God wants. Submit to Him and His laws. His laws include gravity, water retention and sodium intake as well as slow but steady wins the race. I always knew that submit would be loving your enemy and turn the other cheek. Now I see that it is ever so much wider than that. I prayed to the Lord to expand my horizons and here it is. Submit Gemma for you will surely regret not doing so. Funny how everything old becomes new again. Another of those law things....submit. Calories in, calories out, you are what you eat, ya da ya da ya da. Ignore at your peril.

I'll let you know how I fared on the scale....Later.

Sunday, July 30, 2006

Summer Cookout

Yesterday, my husband and one of his friends held a cookout. They each love to cook. I mean LOVE to cook. They each also love to cook in HUGE quantities. I mean, after all, if something comes out so wonderfully well why not have enough for 50 or so to have seconds or thirds or . . .

Well, yesterday was a pulled pork barbecue, North Carolina style. If you're like me, you love to eat this stuff. You don't need the history of it, the recipe wars that exist around it, the styles and nuances of it. Put it on a platter and hand it over. Yum. These two guys, hubby and friend, when they begin a project such as we had yesterday, become solid, know everything experts and can debate for days the advantages of a vinegar sauce over a whatever. On and on and on. The end result was that the long smoked pork butt(s) were unbelievably good, fed 25 and we have enough left over to do it again Sam.

It really was a good time. Each guy got to invite 4 other couples and they decided to ask people who don't normally socialize together so everyone got to know new folks. It really worked well. Fortunately all of those people also loved to eat. Everyone brought a side dish or appetizer or desert and what a feast we had. Best part? The guys took care of it all. We two wives just stood back and did our very best to keep out. Of course we did the run and fetch thing when asked but basically they both did it. They invited and co-ordinated and shopped and best of all, cooked. Why didn't we do this years ago?

Neither of my friends whose mothers are ill were able to come and that was the one cloud over the day. The back pain for one is merely a pulled muscle, thank God. My other friend's mother is still holding her own but they say it's only a matter of days. All of my friend's siblings are pulling together and thanking God for the years they have all shared with their mother and the time they now have to care for her and each other. God is so good.

Thursday, July 27, 2006

My Friends' Pain

This has been a strange week so far. My two dear friends have elderly mothers. Their mothers are both in their mid 90's and live on their own. Each is as sharp as, actually sharper than, a 20 something. They are both women who have enormous variety in their interests and who care for themselves very well. Each this week has suffered a medical moment. One had a back pain which, upon investigation, was caused by a mass on some internal organ. That mass is malignant and way down the road. Pneumonia has set in in just a short time and although that is on the wane she is being sent home with hospice and the family has been told it's not for long. My other friend's mother also has back pain but she is still home and nursing herself. That friend is so worried that the pain is caused by something more than a pulled muscle that she can't sleep and is wild that her mother refuses to seek medical attention.

Which dear friend is suffering more? The one who knows for sure or the one imagining? I pray for both and see why both situations cause pain and both pains are real and different and the same. Lord help me help them help us all. My husband, who I know in my heart has a deep childlike faith but won't admit it, said the strong faith of the mother with the malignancy will mean that she is handling the situation better than any of her children. I thank God for giving me a glimpse of my husband's core.

Bless us all and carry us through the day ahead.

Tuesday, July 25, 2006

Help with Salvation

I just read a post by an orthodox christian and I realized what an infant in Christ I am....... I am a Protestant, tried and true and a believer in Sola Scriptura. I know that praying without ceasing is what I should be doing and I try. I know the Holy Spirit will take over when my words and pleadings fade. I pray to the Father. I have great respect and awe for the Mother of God, Mary but I honestly have never prayed to her except during a Catholic Mass and I attend those for funerals, weddings and christenings. Remember, I am from Boston and I am not Catholic. Never say that I don't know what it is to be a minority.

I just read about salvation through praying and I am so confused. I guess the poster meant that we pray that the subject be brought to Christ and be saved but somehow it read as if merely by praying to Mary the subject would be saved. Why would you not just pray to the Father through the Son and there you are..... Help me with this. I thought Jesus was my High Priest and Intervenor..... what's this about?????

A Real Downer

Yes! Victory! Well for a week at last. Jenny was very very good to me. Down 5 pounds. Actually down 5.2 pounds and that's the most weight I have ever lost in a brief time. Now for the real weight loss which begins this week. I often said that if I would only stop my glass or two of wine each evening that would cause a major ripple in the fat world. That and less food have really worked. I have to say that I feel better. I have a foot that swells up when I walk past a salt shaker and that foot? She has remained her normal puffy size. My rings fit in the morning. This fluid retention thing seems to calm down when the diet returns to normal. This time I must retain the lessons of healthy eating.

So. It's on with the show. The lettuce growers love it when I buckle down.

I truly must give credit where it belongs and just as when I quit smoking I would thank God every morning for another day to come which would be smoke free, so I will do that now. Thank you God for guiding me through this coming day and keeping me on a diet that will provide me with good health and a smaller body size.

Have a wonder filled day.

Thursday, July 20, 2006

Dieting Dilemma

Well, I have made it through two days. That includes a night at the ball game. Thank heavens it was the hottest night on record and the mere thought of food roasted me even further. The water, expensive as it was, was cold for about ten minutes. Between the body heat and the heat heat, well, it heated up. My husband was talking about going to Sharper Image or Brookstone and buying a personal air conditioner. He said that you hang it around your neck and it blows cold air at you. Could this be true or is he putting one over on me? I haven't looked that up yet because I really didn't think about it 'till now but that night I would have sent him to the store for one if he could have gotten back into the park. I must check it out and see if he was stringing me along.

Anyhow. .

Here I am after lunch, at work and still on the straight and Jenny narrow. I feel ten pounds thinner already. I had a doctor's appointment today which got cancelled by the doctor for a change. I would have gone, stepped on the scale and faced the music.....honest! By a stroke of luck, the doc can't make it and it has been rescheduled for a month from now. I will then get on the scale, weigh what I did a year ago (having lost maybe 10 pounds) I will be so proud of myself and I will get a lecture about losing the weight I said I would lose a year ago. I will then have to confess to the weight gain and loss or shut up and promise that next year things will be different. Oh what a dilemma. Even more of dilemma is spelling wierd that word looks.

I have a month to sort out all of the above and pray that I do lose ten pounds so that I don't have to explain what I have done with my piggy self.....I love food. I love wine. I love company. I love gatherings with all of the previous and don't tell me it isn't about the food, it's about the conversation. Everyone I know talks about food, cooking it, buying it, eating out, eating in, when they aren't doing those things they are watching the food channel. . .

Life is Good!

Tuesday, July 18, 2006

Jenny Welcomes Me Back

Well, I gave up. Yes. I did. I called Jenny Craig and crawled back with my tail between my legs. If I had one, that is. I went back dammit and leaped on that scale. 13 of the 18 pounds I lost 4 years ago are back. I thought it would be worse than that so I am only semi miserable. As Scarlett O'Hara so aptly put it, "As God is my witness, I'll never weigh more than this again." I'm actually relieved that I did it and it's over and now I just need to get through this week. I have decided that I can always lose 20 pounds (although I didn't 4 years ago did I) so my first goal is 10 pounds. Then I will see what the next ten look like. I really don't expect to be a slim and vibrant teen ager - I never was that to begin with. Ten pounds right about now would really make a difference to me and my clothes and getting through the heat of what's left of the summer and there is a lot of heat left to this season. The only problem with the Jenny thing is the social life thing and the summer. I WILL DO IT (at least for the first week) One week at a time as they say. I'll let you know next Monday how much less of me there is.

Monday, July 17, 2006

Growing Sideways

On my morning walk I did what I usually do which is to thank God for letting me live here even if it is just part time at the moment. I marvel at all of the birds singing. A cardinal was perched on a roof singing his little heart out and it made me think of my dad. A butterfly flitted by and I thought of my mother. Gigantic and blue blue blue hydrangeas abound. They are bigger and bluer than ever this year. We think it's the heavy rain all spring, we being myself and I. I spotted a spindly pine tree growing almost sideways and realized it was trying to reach the sun. That made me think of people who know what they need to thrive. They have to reach their sun and often, to do so, they have to grow sideways and reach out of the crowd shadowing them. They are often looked at as anomalies. They have their own music and dance to it. Or is it march to it. Whatever. I thought that would be a great book title. Whatever it takes to reach the sun. or the light. or . . . . my walk finished too soon. I'll ponder this tomorrow. Have a wonderful Monday even if it's hazy hot and humid as it is here. . it's summer after all.

Friday, July 14, 2006

Greedy Grabbers

Back to local events here in Massachusetts. The Big Dig is a national project. Taxpayers all over this country had the honor of paying for the largest urban traffic project known to the United States. Lots of people got rich. A "Big Dig Estate" is a catch phrase around these here parts. Don't rock the boat if you know of a problem. Kerry, our fearless senator, used the Keep the Money Flowing phrase. Now, a woman was killed in one of the tunnel when a ceiling panel, 3 tons of concrete worth, let loose and collapsed the passenger side of the car she was riding in. Her husband driving was able to crawl from the wreckage and who knows how he is able to get through the next hour of his life not to mention the next day.

Here we have the door opened on a project that cost 15 billion dollars. The chairman of the project and the turnpike system which also controls the airport security that failed is refusing to resign as requested by just about everyone in the state. The last chairman to leave left after 9/11. She left a very wealthy woman. This guy won't be leaving until all the pressure he can bring to bear has been brought to buy him a healthy overstuffed paycheck. The shredders will not be running until he has those assurances from everyone whose hands were in the bag of goodies that the Big Dig brought to the king pins here in Massachusetts. I feel like we are in the middle of a Sicilian town centuries ago. The mob is searching for some victims to feed the unwashed masses so they will all settle down and return to paying the tribute.

Egad what a nasty greedy snarled up mess. And that's just the elected representative group. Their associates are legion, and vote; thus the return of the worst of the worst to office.

Thursday, July 13, 2006

My Great Aunt Alice

This morning is again, hot humid hazy and more than likely by the time I finish this.....rainy. I am reminding myself of one of my great aunts, that's great as in my father's aunt not great as in what a swell gal although she was very kind. This particular great aunt kept little diaries and in them she would jot down the weather and her events of the day. I read through one of those little gems and it was a lot like this:

Rainy today. Hot. Opened a window. Too humid to walk downtown. Swept the kitchen floor. Sarah stopped in with a letter from Olga. We had tea and ate the sugar cookies I baked yesterday.

She would have kept a blog like this probably. If she knew that her audience were large enough, two or three, she would have told everyone about the family tree, she loved that sort of thing. A connection to the Tufts family was her huge claim to fame. A cousin of mine spent forever trying to sort that out since some obscure by law in the early beginnings of Tufts University provided for tuition to all descendants of the founder. I'm not sure he ever managed to connect the dots.

Well, Aunt Alice, I hope you can see your impact on me. It's lasting.

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

More Is Never Enough -- MINE

And now that that YAY is out of my system, on with the show. Whatever the show may be..... I was so disturbed to read about the taking of land in Piscataway NJ. Eminent domain be damned. This Socialistic bent that our country is swaying toward is so crappy. The only people who make out with the socialistic re-distribution stuff are the people with power. Haven't we seen that people who become "public servants" make out so much better than the rest of us who actually have to rely on performance of the company or individual effort for bonuses or whatever else is rewarded to make for a better life. Raises don't come automatically, bonuses don't come at all unless the world is working in the right direction for the entire company. Public servants seem to breeze through the world with nary a care. Life is merely a matter of raising property taxes and maybe overriding the laws that keep the taxes in place so that we all can survive.

Now it seems those "public servants" can decide that your home or land is not something that you should keep. They know that the world will be a better place (for them) if you are ousted from the spot you saved for and sweated to pay for and thought was yours. It's not. I would love Socialism too if I were one of those Commissars in charge who could line his or her pockets with whatever used to be someone else's and now is mine. Remember the definition of mine......More Is Never Enough.

YAY Gemma

First of all I am so proud of myself for posting in a continous manner. YAY gemma! good for me.

Fine and Dandy thanks and you?

Oddly enough, I am feeling fine. I say oddly since it IS odd to feel fine. I am usually anxious, stressed, bored, defeated, depressed, sad, etc etc and so forth. Fine is new. Fine in that I am none of those things I just streamed on about. I must admit that I have that way off in the distance cloud of guilt that could overwhelm me at any moment. You know the one. It's out there, there's no reason for it but the lift of an eyebrow, someone stopping talking as you walk into the room, a comment about something missing.........whatever, any of those can start it up.

I was telling a friend that when a call comes in from a certain party I can feel my stomach churn and all the acids in my body work their way up to my throat. I become paralyzed with unknown angst and panic. Unknown because I know there's no reason to have those feelings but it's uncontrollable. It's like when I was a kid and was told that someone in authority wanted to talk to me. It was always, in my head, because I did something wrong. I would run through everything I had ever said, done, thought and would , in my head, vow to never do, say or think such bad things ever, ever again. Nine times out of ten that person in authority would want to talk to me for completely simple things. Would I like to join reading club? Could the Brownie meeting be at my house? Would I ask my mother to bake brownies for the Valentine's party? That sort of thing. The walking of the plank never occurred. The stay after school for the rest of your life because you told Margie Scott that Ruthie Lindsay didn't like her....that never happened. Why do I still have that dread and fear of someone in a position of authority calling to speak with me?

Back to fine. I have none of those feelings now. I am fine. I want to stay that way for an hour or two. I like it. Gotta go now while the feeling is still with me.

Monday, July 10, 2006

Hazy, Hot, Humid

Today is a hot, humid and hazy day. Yes, those lazy hazy days of summer. This is one of those. I finished all the laundry yesterday so that chore is behind me. I have to thaw out chicken, buy milk, go to the Christmas Tree Shop for small cocktail size napkins that they sell for $1.99 as opposed to $5.50 elsewhere. What a day, what a day. Last week I was supposed to be on vacation but wound up in the office on Thursday and on a conference call on Friday. Today, I should be working here on an employee manual but since I worked on two of my vacation days, I might cruise on one of my work days this week.

Now that the guilt of not working at home while at home has been somewhat set aside and the rationale for not working being laid on the table, I will get on with my non-work at home day. I will get on with it slowly due to the lazy hazy day that it is.

I just read a blog, A Crafty Madness. I have read this blog for a long time through all of its iterations. Andrea wrote today about reading a book, Witness by Whittaker Chambers and I am currently reading that as well. I have been reading and re-reading it actually. I can only read it for brief periods because he writes so beautifully that I get sucked into the world he lived in and when I stop reading it's like coming up for air after deep sea diving. I have to be put into the compression chamber and re-insert myself into this world. The events he describes are so similar to events that are occurring as I type and the personalities he interacted with are here as well. Everyone drives today's vehicles and dresses differently but the character traits....They are the same. When will people stop doing the same foolish things over and over when history shows those things to be unsuccessful?

I'm glad she wrote about Chambers...I have to go back to that book and read on.

Hazy, Hot and Humid is a perfect atmosphere for that.

Saturday, July 08, 2006

Awake and Tired

Up since 5:30AM and getting ready to walk at 8:15. Couldn't sleep earlier, obviously. My head doesn't quit at times. I was in a state for myself over the what if's and yeah but's. That live in the moment thing doesn't work for me at 5AM. I am everywhere but here. Now, it's 7:39 my time and I am so exhausted that I could crawl back into bed and sleep for several hours. The problem with that being, the dog. He is so big and sprawled that I have no place to crawl back to.

Wednesday, July 05, 2006

The Mexican Left the Building

In which I point out similarities between Mexico and US. Just read about the election in Mexico and the results which were that the conservative won. I also read about what a clean and upright election it was, how the group in charge of such clean elections did a wonderful job and present to the world a model of democracy in action. This followed by the outraged sobbing of the left in that country claiming fraud and boo hooing that the candidate on the left will NEVER concede until he is pronounced the winner at which point the other guy had better clear out. When did I miss the part that AlGore/JohnKerry were campaign managers for the loser. Wait and see how many here in this part of the world are tsk tsking that Mexico would be dealing with the election in this way. I mean. The votes have been counted. The election was clean. One man wins. One man loses. I guess though, those communist wannabees south of the border are going to run the press as they do here and turn the country into turmoil and a quagmire. How can they not since it appears to have worked here to a certain degree.


Monday, July 03, 2006

Sit on My side of the gym

I am so sick of the whole world being run like my family is or did or does. I always called it the bleacher principle. That's where it doesn't matter whether you're right or wrong, what matters is how many people are on your side. In my family we have often had disputes of all sorts. I have a ton of first cousins, aunts, uncles, neices and nephews. Over the years we have all had some words and disagreements and the winner of whatever the dispute was or is was never the one who was right but the one with the most people on his or her side. Now that is just stupid, wrong and ridiculous. There is, whether we want there to be or not, a right and a wrong. Right doesn't become wrong because no one is sitting on that side. But we really prefer for Mandy to be ok because whenever we had a party she always brought the greatest crab dip so whatever the issue is she has to be right because Doreen just can't cook so how can she be the better person....................................fu