Back for More!

It’s been awhile since I’ve posted. There has been quite a bit happening that unfortunately has taken all of my focus. I’ve been feeling kinda off and very sleepy, having a lot pains in my legs and arms. I finally went to the Dr to have a physical and figure everything out. Yesterday I received my results.

I have a severe Vitamin D deficiency. 

This was not even something I ever thought about. It never came up on the WebMd searches I had been doing, but it completely makes sense. All of the symptoms are everything I’ve been dealing with. Interestingly enough I’ve also managed to have the lowest vitamin D reading that my Dr has ever seen. 

I’ll be on meds for a few months to see how things go and do some more testing. You would think it would be no big deal, but my Dr was very serious. I’ve been reading about it since I found out. It’s kinda crazy, but I understand the seriousness of course. 

My Dr also reminded me that I managed to put on 25lbs in 6 months. That itself is a lot for your body to handle. Stress & emotional eating are NOT your friends. 

Just as a side note.. I have never been a big meat eater, I have always preferred veggies, especially since going to a college for Hotel/Restaurant Mgt. It was definitely and eye opener!

 3 years ago I became vegetarian and would have dairy products (cheese, ice cream etc). This past November I fell off the wagon and began eating everything. I decided that my feeling like crap with no energy was related to my eating all of the items I didn’t eat before and decided to remove meat from my diet again. Then after watching “Forks Over Knives”, I decided to take ALL animal products from my diet and adjust to a plant based way of life.

I have to admit that removing all animal products has already made a huge difference and I feel alot better but still get the aches and pains and tiredness, not to mention for my weight. Now I just have to get these meds in my system and see how this works out. 

Never a dull moment, but very glad this is something that can be turned around!

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Coming Up For Air

I’ve gotten zero blogging done lately. Between work, family birthdays, family emergencies, work emergencies etc,  it’s been an interesting week!

I don’t watch the news but I’ve heard about the crazy weather in the south. My heart and prayers go out to everyone living in the path of the storms, as well as anyone who’s lost someone in these storms.

When we see or hear of all of the pain and destruction some folks are going through  it makes it very hard to complain about silly things.

I’m grateful to be alive and celebrate with my family. I’m grateful they are alive to celebrate with me. I’m proud that anyone in my family would call on me in the event of an emergency. I’m happy that I have work emergencies which means I still am able to work and have a job that allows me to pay my bills and keep my home.

There is ALWAYS more to be happy about than to complain about. Sometimes we just have to look a bit more.

Finding those happy things makes the bad ones go away quicker. It’s absolutely true.  Sounds like the perfect reason to be happy to me!

“Life is ironic. It takes sadness to know what happiness is, noise to appreciate silence & absence to value presence. – Unknown”

Wishing you all happiness!

 

 

Scratch & Sniff Nostalgia

Yesterday while using a electric soap dispenser, I was thrown right back into my childhood! I guess it’s unusual to have a soap dispenser throw you back, but it threw me none the less!

I sat in my office for awhile trying to figure out where this familiar smell was coming from. I couldn’t quite put my finger on what it was but I knew that it made me feel like a kid again. Then it hit me, the scent of the soap on my hands reminded me of the scratch & sniff stickers I loved back in 2nd grade. You’d think the soap would smell fragrant and pretty. Nope, not this soap. It smelled like the pickle scratch & sniff sticker from the 80’s! Too me it smelled great! I even went back and washed my hands again to smell it. You see my favorite scratch & sniff sticker was the pickle stickers! I used to collect all different kinds but the pickles were my favorite!

Of course I had to scan the internet to see where I could purchase them! I wanted to share them with my niece and nephew, who can’t seem to grasp why I thought they were so cool! Anyhoo, I can’t wait for them to be delivered, maybe the kids won’t like them,  who knows.

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5 Ways Our Pets Keep Us Healthy

Absolutely love your post! As a person who’s grown up with and always had dogs, I cannot imagine life without them!

Energy We Bring

Ok, even if you aren’t a GIANT animal lover like myself, you cannot deny that there is an indescribable bond between humans and their animals. I happen to be a “dog person,” but appreciate any and all forms of pet love! I have had several dogs over the course of my life, and although each bond has been unique, the love is always the same.

According to Karin Winegar (author of Saved: Rescued Animals and the Lives They Transform),“The human-animal bond bypasses the intellect and goes straight to the heart and emotions and nurtures us in ways that nothing else can.” Pretty powerful, huh?

Beyond bringing joy to our lives and our homes, pets can actually promote the health of their owners! There are a number of proven health benefits of pet ownership, including physical, emotional and mental improvements.

animal love

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The Protectors

 (Have a seat, this is a longer one 🙂 )

 

It was Michael who saved him.

Nine years ago his beautiful wife of 35 years passed along with his only son in a terrible car accident. It had been the worst time of his life, all he wanted was to be with his wife. Fortunately, it was Michael, who was then 1 year old, who gave him a reason to wake everyday. It was the love of this little boy that brought him back to life again. Over the past 10 years they had become the best of friends. There was nothing more Ben wanted in life but to protect Michael. He would do everything in his power to ensure this little boy was happy every day of his life, For that reason on this day his heart was breaking for this little boy. Ben sat quietly watching and listening to this little boy who is sitting on a kitchen stool, twisting his little hands knots, tears cascading down his pink cheeks. They could always talk about anything, yet today Michael seemed too embarrassed to even look him in the eye.

 

“They make fun of me” he cried “No one likes me, no one wants to be my friend”

Ben searched his mind for the right words, none came

“They push me and punch me, when I walk to school,  I don’t ever want to go back, I want to run away”

Ben rushed over to take his grandson in his arms, “It’s ok, I promise. You are such a special boy, there is so much I have to tell you”

Before he realized what he was saying, it was out.

 

Since Michael’s fathers passing, Ben had put a portion of himself aside, almost as if it had died with his son and his wife 9 years ago. Now he found himself struggling both excited & scared to share the stories of his family with this little boy. Stories of the gifts he had hidden away as if he were trying to forget who he really was. It almost worked. Michael had no idea what an extraordinary line of men he comes from. Should the stores be shared? Was it better to let the stories die with him?  He decided that it would be unfair to keep secrets from this precious boy who unknowingly gave Ben strength when he had none left. He wanted Michael to know how strong and powerful he really is.

 

Ben looked down at Michael, lifting his chin “Would you like to hear a story?”

Those words seemed to magically wipe away the tears “Okay, yes” the little boy answered.

Ben sat back on his chair, arms crossed looking off into the distance and began.

 

“When I was a little boy, I loved being in the woods. I would spend all day discovering new places, walking further and further investigating more and more.   My parents would warn me about going too far but at that age I believed that nothing could harm me. One day I found myself in the most beautiful part of the woods I had ever seen. Although it was bright and sunny outside, in this part of the woods it seemed like night. After awhile my stomach began to tell me that it was soon to be dinner time, which meant it was time to head home. I trekked over mossy rocks, up and down hills covered with old leaves and before I knew it, I was lost. I wandered in circles for hours before I sat against a huge oak tree and just cried. I thought for sure no one would ever find me. How would they? No one knew where I was going! Soon I heard the rustling of leaves underneath soft footsteps. I thought for sure a bear, a wolf or maybe the boogie man was coming for me. I tried to hide myself in the shadow of a huge oak tree as the footsteps got closer and the sound of the crunching leaves grew louder. Before I knew it, the biggest most beautiful buck I had ever seen walked around the tree and looked at me head on.  He seemed to stand at least 9 feet tall with a massive set of antlers.

I put my head down, closed my eyes and covered my head, I was sure this huge animal was going to kill me. Then I heard “Benjamin, pick your head up boy”. My head shot up from under my arms to see my father standing before me where the giant deer once stood.

I jumped up and ran into his arms and looked around frantically, sure that this animal would be charging us soon. I tried to tell my father about what I saw but he just hushed me and took my hand. We walked home through the woods in silence.

Later that night my father took me outside and told me how worried he was about me. I promised him that I would never run out like that again. I couldn’t wait to tell him about the giant deer I saw and how big his antlers were, how I thought he was going to trample me and how my father must have scared him away. He just looked at me and smiled “He didn’t run away, I didn’t scare him away”

“Then where did he go” I asked “Did you see him”

“Of course I saw him, I was him”

I laughed and looked at my father, waiting for him to finishing joking with me

“It is true son, you are of him too, as is your Grandfather and all of the other men in this family. You see it is a gift we were given many years ago. Many more years ago then you can count, it’s one you will continue to pass on to your sons should you have any”

“Dad, I’m not a deer, I’m just a boy” I giggled as if an invisible person was tickling me. My father had never been so funny before

“Would you like to see that giant deer again?”

All of my laughter stopped, and I just nodded my head, still half expecting my father to reveal his joke and half terrified this animal would show up again and kill me

He sat back in his rocking chair, rocking back and forth, back and forth

“Look there” he points to the break in the woods by our yard

I look over and from out of the woods I see the giant buck slowly walking through the woods towards us.

“Dad, there he is!! My eyes shot over to the rocking chair, now empty but still rocking “Dad? Dad!? Where are you?”

 

The massive animal arrived again, gliding from the side of our home.

“You see son, When you were lost in the woods, I was able to get to you quickly.  I could run faster, hear better, see father because we are able to travel as our brothers the deer. Your Grandfather taught me, and I will teach you. It is our gift”

 

Ben’s far off gaze lifted and his eyes focused once again on Michael who was sitting wide eyed and fully engaged in this story of the giant buck.

“Grandpa, was that story really about you? Was your Grandpa a big deer”

“Yes Michael, that was my father, he taught me about all of our gift”

“Do I have a special gift too?” he asked

“Of course you do, just like your father did and just like I do.” He said  “When you become 16 years old you will be able to learn how to use your gifts, I will teach you just like I taught your Father”

As if the air had been let out of his balloon, he asks “Why do I have wait until then? I want to do it now”

“Well Michael, there is lots more to learn before you’re able to do those things, there are stories you need to hear, experiences you need to have and before you know it, you’ll be 16. You trust me don’t you?”

“Yes, you’re my best friend and my Grandpa!” the little boy beamed

“Great, then we’ll have quite the adventure! Would you like to see that giant buck one day? Ben asked

“Ohhh yes!!  I hope I see him soon” Michael replied

“Look! Look there Michael” Ben pointed to the window. Michael’s eyes followed. Out in the front lawn the biggest deer he had ever seen stood, looking through the window right at Michael.

Michael turned back looking for his grandfather, only to find he was not there. Michael squealed with excitement and ran out to the front porch, just in time to catch the giant creature leaping off into the woods. Just as he did, Michael’s eyes landed on the figure walking out of the same clearing in the woods, it was his grandfather. Michael jumped off the porch and ran over to his grandfather and hugged him

“That was so cool! I can’t wait to learn to do that”

“In time my boy, for now just know that no matter what happens, I’m always here and if you need me”

 

From that day on Michael’s confidence grew and eventually the teasing began to taper off. It was as if his new found confidence was a repellent for the attacks. He even began to make friends.  Although the teasing had stopped every now and then when walking to school,  the rustling of leaves in the woods would draw his attention. At those times he would catch glimpses of a regal stag walking slowly through the trees. His grandfather keeping a watchful eye on him. Sometimes he wouldn’t notice he was there at all.

 

I hope you’ve enjoyed reading this!  Take a look at my About page to see what you can expect from my blog!

Feature Photo taken by Philip Male – https://flic.kr/p/dtKxva

From NYC to the Rain forest of Peru

Have you ever met someone and felt some type of chemistry or connection and did absolutely nothing about it? I did a few years ago.

 

All I wanted to do is get home. My feet feel like I’ve been walking on hot coals for hours on end. At times I question my decision to work in the city on the weekends, Seriously,  who does that when you already have a regular 9 to 5? The better question would be, who in their right mind would travel almost 3 hours one way to do this? Ah I remember, someone proud of their heritage and happy to share it with others. Right. Now if only that feeling could somehow grant me the powers to twitch my nose like Samantha Stevens, cross my arms and blink my eyes like Jeannie, or better yet, click the heels of these strappy sandals while chanting, there’s no place like home and POOF! I’m there!  Today it’s no use. It seems my fairy godmother has taken long and drawn out vacation. To make matters worse, my regular train is cancelled. Lots of trains are cancelled! This should be fun!  Damn construction!

On my walk to a new train station I can’t help but laugh a little to myself when tourists ask ME for directions. It makes me laugh more when I can actually give the directions. The Ferry? Sure, walk right down this street, make a right, go down 2 blocks and you’ll see the signs. World Trade Center? Sure, Broadway to Liberty Street. Chinatown? I’m sorry I’m not from here. Oh well, you can’t win them all!

Once I get to the station I only have to wait 5 minutes for the next train and there is almost no one waiting with me, a sprinkling of teenagers, a family of tourist complete with silly statue of liberty foam crowns, and one attractive gentleman dressed in jeans and a black shirt who looks to be a bit more distressed than I. After a few minutes of staring at the train schedule and his watch he walks over, looking embarrassed and smiling shyly and says:

“Hi, I’m so sorry to bother you, can you I ask you a question?”

It’s amazing how much energy one can find when they really want it! “Sure, of course!”. Suddenly forgetting about the fire that was taking place on the balls of my feet.

He pours on about how he is trying to get to the World Trade Center PATH station and how all of these closures are crazy and confusing. We look through his train schedule and plan a quick way for him to get to the PATH Station as the train rolls in. One duffle bag, a cell phone, sunglasses  and a watch are his only visible belongings. Simple

We introduce ourselves and come to find out my new friend Dave is not a tourist, he actually lives in the city and usually walks to his office. It wasn’t the fact that he lived and worked in the city that drew me in, it was why he was going to the PATH. As he spoke, his posture changed and he seemed both relaxed and super excited at the same time,  his eyes lit up as he explained that tonight  his plane would be leaving  for Lima Peru. Once he arrived in Lima, he would stay for a day and then travel to the rain forest to spend 4 weeks. He went to describe how beautiful it was and how great the people were. This was not new to him, he’s done this twice before. I could have listened to him talk about his trips for hours but this is a short subway ride.  Perhaps that Fairy Godmother of mine decided to pop in for a minute because that same construction that I assumed messed up my plans, is the same construction that had our train stopped for a few minutes.

He asked me where I was going,  I explained that I worked at the museum on the weekends and was on my way home. We talked about what I did at the museum and how crazy it’s been working my regular job and doing this, but I loved it, the only downside was the commute. He understood completely. Dave was full of questions about  the museum, my background, and the the area I was from.  He had heard of it and knew that it was quite the distance away.

It was so strange and something I’ve never experienced before as an adult. On any other day I’m sure we’d walk right past each other but, today thanks to construction we’re thrown into a crazy mess and can’t seem to squeeze enough out of this conversation.

After a few jolts and squeals the train slowly starts to roll, and a crackled announcement comes up and his stop is next.  Then, like two bulls in a china shop, two ladies with baskets on wheels full of shopping bags rolls between us, positioning themselves to get off the train first as soon as the doors open. We both look at each other with raised brows and smiles as if to say ‘Okaaayyy”

We speak over them for a minute and he thanks me for all of my help, I tell him to be safe and have a good trip. He promises to stop by the museum sometime just as the train pulls into the station and stops, the doors open and one of the ladies cannot get her basket off the train. Dave helps her and looks back to me and his phone, then back to me and says over the heads of the people getting on the train  “Thanks so much again, I really appreciate it.   I’ll definitely make my way to the museum when I’m back!”

All I could do was smile and wave.

If my Fairy Godmother were around,  I imagine she would have would have nudged these ladies out of the way, or maybe even more appropriately,  nudged me into doing something! After all, the setup was perfect I suppose!

About a month later I stopped working at the museum. Not because I didn’t love it, I did love it, but because it was all taking a toll on me. Needless to say, I never saw Dave again. I’m pretty sure he had an excellent time in Peru! I bet right now he is sitting in a high rise somewhere in the city behind his desk anxiously waiting for his next trip for his next trip!

 

 

Write a Novel? Easier said than done!

If you’ve read my posts, you’ll know that my goal is to write a novel. Well I started putting ideas down on paper a few days ago and this is not as easy as one would think.  I’ve had thoughts in my head for awhile of what I wanted to write about, my characters, where it would take place and suddenly I feel like it’s not working. No excitement. No progress. No bueno.

I think my problem is getting wrapped up in preparation.

I’ve read a few articles on what I should be doing to start writing my book and I’m finding that instead of me going about it easily, I’m getting wrapped up in preparation. I’m getting stuck in I should have a, b and c done first and it’s throwing my creative mojo all over the place.

Solution?

I’m going to do is what I’ve always done – Get excited and just start writing. Once I get going I can worry about all of the pieces coming together and how it will fit.

I’m going to start again tomorrow! Wish me luck!