Thursday, April 17, 2014

Minimalist

Trying to become minimalists. Our first experience with living a life minimally was about four years ago when we took a trip to Europe. We were planning to see many places in
two in a half weeks so we decided to travel with just a back pack each. Rick Steve's travel books provided all the information we needed to achieve this and it worked wonderfully!

This opened our eyes to how much we do not need to live happy, fulfilled lives, Several of our kids also choose to live with less rather than more and we have learned a lot from them.

These are a few changes we have made over the years and have not regretted any of them.
_ We have never traveled anywhere with anything other than a backpack, including several trips out of the country.
- I constantly go through closets, attics, draws, etc and either sell or give away/ donate anything we no longer need or use. This one can be hard especially if one of you likes to hang on to things "just in case", A rule I try to follow is if i haven't used it in a year or more it usually goes.
- There are online garage sales on Face book and I sell everything on these sites, they are great!
- When our boys were in high school they had to start narrowing down their choices in sports because they simply did not have the time to play them all. We had to take our own advice and narrow down our activities and the time and responsibility that came with them. We gave up a boat we loved as it was just too big for the two of us as well as our camper. However we have kept the "toys" we can maintain and fit better into our lives at this time.
- Protecting our time. It is so easy to get caught up with all the media that surrounds us. Especially when you spend a great deal of time not feeling well. We turned off cable, don't
watch TV and I personally have to take Face Book breaks from time to time. This of course allows us to choose the movies we want to watch, read or simply do something else.
- If we can't pay for it...we don't buy it. Living within your means allows for a great sense of freedom from debt.
These are just a few examples and we have a long way to go. By de- cluttering, downsizing, and focusing on what you really need in all aspects of your life opens the door for more time and money to enjoy the areas of your life that are truly a priority.

A very helpful website to check out is  http://www.becomingminimalist.com/

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Life with Liam


Little Liam

Two and a half years ago my life completely changed on the day our first grand baby was born....Liam James. For the longest time I literally could not take my eyes off of him. He was mesmerising.

My son's son...amazing! He looks just like his dad and sometimes I look at him, watch his movements or see that sneaky little grin on his face and it's as though I am looking back at Kevin again.
Kevin on left/Liam on right

I have been so fortunate to be a regular part of his life. We have Nonna day at least once a week. Now he is 2 and half. I've watched him learn to crawl, walk, talk and so much more!

It's those little special moments we share just between us that I will always cherish.
Some of our favorites are swimming, bubbles, walks, bike rides, playing guitar and singing his ABC's with his Papa, making cookies and snuggling after bath watching Super why!


Then there are the "firsts".The first time he said Nonna, my grandmother name. I was in the hospital, he and my son Kevin came to visit. I always saved the cookies for Liam from my meal. We sat in the bed eating cookies and watching the Cowboys..that's when he said Nonna! Last week as he was leaving, he gave me a hug and kiss and said I love you! Those were the two best firsts that melted my heart.


I love being a grandparent and feel this is not only a blessing and honor but a responsibility given to us to be a loving, nurturing part of his life. It is almost unexplainable the love you have for your grandchildren. In 4 months we get to do it again with our next grandson. More on him when we reach the letter O.
I thank God for my little buddy Liam!


Monday, April 14, 2014

Komen

This past Saturday I along with 2 very close friends and fellow survivors attended the Komen survivor celebration of Hope.
This was my 4th year to attend. As happy as I was to have two of my closest friends with me, my heart breaks that they also were attending because of a breast cancer diagnosis.
Each year we look forward to a little pampering, delicious brunch and being surrounded by so many who also walk this path.
There are women who have been diagnosed as recently as just a few weeks ago, to the longest living survivor of 39 years! This brings so much hope to all of us, no matter how long your fight has been.
They ask us to fill out cards at the table acknowledging the newest and longest surviving person. This year it happened to be me and one of my friends.



There is a fashion show and choir made up solely of survivors. The Komen foundation shows where the money raised goes to in the surrounding counties.
For me I am inspired by all these strong women and the people in their lives known as co-survivors.
I have hope for myself and my friends that are there with me when they ask all survivors of 40, 30, 20 years and so on to stand up.
I also hope that when I stood up when they called out for 15 years that this brings hope to others as it did for me when I was in my earlier years of this fight.
This event has inspired me to find some way to volunteer to help others, whether in a big or small way.

Friday, April 11, 2014

J-juicing



As a part of doing my best to live as healthy a life as possible, my husband and I have always made nutrition a priority.

We have a juicer, but like most people didn't use it much for two reasons. Too many parts and pieces and having to waste so much of the food we were juicing.

About a week ago there was a report about the juice we were drinking saying they were adding harmful chemicals that were not on the nutrition label. Whether or not this story is true, I have no idea. However this led to the decision to buy the Nutribullet!

We have been using it for about two weeks now and love it! It is so quick and easy to use and clean. We like to have smaller ,easy to prepare meals for dinner and this does the trick.

We both feel better and I have even lost a couple of pounds. Looks like juicing will be part of our "healthy living" decisions.


Wednesday, April 9, 2014

I-Intimacy

The gift of intimacy with close friends and family is so important. Especially when you go through the hard times and trials that life brings our way.

Today I was reminded of that several times. Yesterday I called my oncology nurse because I have noticed small cuts that have been appearing and bleeding much more than a tiny scab should bleed.
She had me come in today to check me out and check my labs. Fortunately my labs were fine and they did not think the small cuts were any kind of skin cancer.

What I did notice was how caring my nurses were as they knew I was nervous. I got hugs and love you's on my way out.

My dear friend came with me. She is also going through chemo for breast cancer. We were great friends before but this brings our friendship to a deeper level.  We stopped at a favorite place for a cupcake and coffee. As we talked we encouraged each other about staying strong, keeping a positive attitude, exercising and staying on track with healthy eating.Yes, as we were eating a cupcake! We made the decision to search out all the local places that serve healthy organic foods so we continue to make good choices when we celebrate, as we did today.

I appreciated the care my nurses gave me today, the time and encouragement from my friend and the texts from the few people that knew I was having the labs checked today to see if all was ok. Having close people in my life that I can have intimate conversations with, laugh with, cry with and rejoice with has been imperative.
For this I am very blessed!

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

H- Hallelujah

http://liftbump.com/2014/04/10279-homeless-man-walked-onto-music-video-one-expected-join-without-missing-beat/

Hallelujah in the highest praise. This video is an amazing testimony of no matter what our situation is we can be happy, joyous and always give praise to the Lord!

I love the joy the homeless man exhibits and how he touched those around him. A great lesson for us all.

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