Lilypie - First Birthday

Lilypie - Fourth Birthday

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Yes, it's April...


Hello all - I know it's April and I haven't written, but I've been busy having fun taking full-time care of my youngest cousin who is now seven months old!  I wanted to attach a photo or two of our adventures together but can't find the darn cord that goes with the camera.  Oh well, another day perhaps...

Not much time to ramble tonight, it's just about my "new bedtime" - but I did want to mention that I am doing a pretty great job keeping up with drinking more water, eating almost all healthy foods daily, and getting more exercise than I anticipated.  It's not much in comparison with most people, but since I had been doing almost zero exercise the first two months of this year I now walk up and down flights of stairs daily, walk around the neighborhood pushing the stroller up and down the hilly streets where my cousin lives, in addition to walking several hundred times around the house and yard - my cousin LOVES to be carried around and so my arms are now used to the 15 (16?) pounds being shifted from one side to the other :)  She is so adorable, I only feel badly that I have yet to spend any significant time with the brand new (well, not brand new anymore!!) baby girl across the street!

Oh, the photo for today was one that another aunt of mine emailed from my cousin's 30th birthday (formal black and white) - which, as I have mentioned before, was my 28th birthday.  I got to see family along with a necklace from my parents and I got myself a few books/dvds which I read/watched very quickly.  Hope everyone is doing well and enjoying life - babies are so much fun!!

Friday, March 25, 2011

Rambling more than usual...


Well I was going to post a blog on Sunday March 20th with photos of Saturday March 19th because there were several significant events... Some memories that made me quite happy, and a couple that have brought me to tears.  Life goes on though... Events from a week ago, a month ago, over a decade ago - there is logic but no reason and reason but no logic.  Okay, trying to pull in my rambling and make a bit more sense...

March 19th is always a day filled with memories, and the most cheerful I shall share - this year was my cousins' 30th birthday (which he celebrated by throwing a black-tie outdoor gathering - one of the three events I attended that day); March 19th was also my 28th birthday - thank you to those of you who noticed and commented on my facebook page.  Although honestly I have forgotten about my birthday different years, had simply been too busy with life!  Luckily someone (usually family) always reminded me... This year I somehow managed to miss eating any cake/pie/ice cream/etc though!  Another of the three events that evening was my neighbor's 40th birthday, and she had a dinner/alcohol spread which I did not partake in for various reasons.  So dessert is on my agenda sometime in the near future.

I was disappointed to not see the once-every-18-years moon on my birthday!  Last Saturday nature was to have shown a beautiful rare opportunity in the form of an unusual moon -- but the clouds were too close and full of rain here to see it.  Oh well.  I am lucky that the rain (which I do love) did not hinder two outdoor events that evening - and I did get a glimpse of the moon the evening before so I guess that works...

Several television shows have been watched by me recently, partially because I am avoiding doing things/talking with people (even though I want to communicate more sometimes it brings me more frustration/pain because I allow my mind to consider unrealistic possibilities)... Anyway, Monday night there was a show that held song lyrics I found interesting, so I shall post them here:

"Time to dream that love will last
Time to drive my car too fast
Time to walk before I run
Time to be, oh time to be your 21"

Those four lines seemed to be the chorus, and I did find a youtube video of the song... The lyrics reminded me not only of different times in my life, but of different people in my life, and of various stages in life yet to be lived.  Yes, more rambling.  I realize that this blog really does not have a specific purpose, and so I might end up making it private sometime in the near future.  I just wanted somewhere to write anything and everything that came to mind.  I do love that I have connected with various people via this blog, but part of me thinks I was just looking for a new outlet to express myself without being judged.

There are currently too many other thoughts for me to express in any way, let alone by somewhat incoherent ramblings that possibly should follow other blogs in the fact that other blogs tend to have a specific purpose/direction to them.  I am here, there, and everywhere!  I do hope that everyone finds something to be happy about this week, and I hope personally that I am able to find enough energy and sleep in the coming weeks.  ::HUGS:: to everyone!

Am including the video I found, though I don't agree with the entire song I am still repeating the chorus so it may as well be included as part of my past few days!


Saturday, March 19, 2011

Saint Patrick's Day, Paolini, and more...


Shall start off with my frustration at my internet - I had several different blogs to write this past week but the internet kept going out!  Oh well.  Shall try and summarize the highlights of my week here...

Since Sunday I spent my free time re-reading "Eragon" "Eldest" and "Brisinger" - staying up quite late most nights but enjoying immersing myself in the fictional world created by Christopher Paolini.  He has one final book coming out (hopefully quite soon!) then the story will be completed - I finished the last one around 1am this morning : )

Finished two projects and took a couple of quizzes this week; have washed several sinks of dishes but aside from that (oh, and laundry), I have not really done well with working on chores; overall I have been eating healthy food still - although last night I was surprised with a stuffed crust pizza with black olives which was nice for the first Friday in Lent!

This week I finally got to spend some time with my neighbors new baby girl - she is sooo cute!  Wednesday I did not get to see my cousins as usual, but Thursday I picked up my seven-year-old cousin from school and spent some time with him (didn't get to see my six-month-old cousin, she was asleep in the car when my aunt arrived)...

St. Patrick's Day is always celebrated in my family, and this year my mom cooked dinner, the wonderful traditional corned beef, cabbage, and potatoes that I always enjoy! I did stick with mostly cabbage and meat, but I did have some of the tiny potatoes and cut them up into pieces to spread them out a bit.  In general I am doing pretty well keeping up high levels of fruits, veggies, and proteins.  Most of my carbs come from high fiber whole wheat bread (as sandwiches, toast, etc) included daily.

I also received a lovely bag in the mail with extra "goodies" created by Alyssa which was fun - I bought the bag which is very comfy and holds most of whatever I am carrying around during the day (book to read, water, small purse, etc) but the extra "goodies" were a nice surprise : )

Today is (technically "was" not "is" since they are in France) my godsons' first feast day!  This week I received a couple of videos of him and his twin sister and they are growing so fast!!  I can't wait to see them when they come to CA to visit this summer.  I also got an email from France today which was great but made me miss everyone more if that's possible!

This evening I have three things to attend to, and there is a guarantee that I will see babies at two of them so that will be fun!  Hope everyone had a good week, I need to get moving if I am to walk out the door in half an hour!  Glad the internet held out long enough for me to finally write a blog entry... Considered calling various friends this week, part of me is feeling a bit lonely, but I know everyone has their own lives which can get busy at times.  Perhaps this next week I shall try to get in touch with some of you...

Rain is in the forecast for the next couple of days, hope everyone gets a chance to enjoy nature and friends this week!!

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Ten Years...

There is a song that has the lyrics "don't blink" because "life goes faster than you think"

I am home and in pj's after my ten-year high school reunion.  I got to see a fairly large turnout (about 15 of my 93 former classmates) and overall had an enjoyable evening.  Tired, so more perhaps a better entry at a later date - how time flies!

I keep blinking, and am sure many of you do as well... Hope everyone is doing well!!



Note: "Don't Blink" is performed by Kenny Chesney and full lyrics are as follows:

I turned on the evening news

Saw a old man being interviewed
Turning a hundred and two today

Asked him what's the secret to life?
He looked up from his old pipe
Laughed and said, all I can say is

Don't blink, just like that you're six years old
And you take a nap
And you wake up and you're twenty-five
And your high school sweetheart becomes your wife

Don't blink, you just might miss
Your babies growing like mine did
Turning into moms and dads
Next thing you know your better half

Of fifty years is there in bed
And you're praying God takes you instead
Trust me friend a hundred years goes
Faster than you think, so don't blink

I was glued to my TV and it looked
Like he looked at me and said
"Best start putting first things first"

'Cause when your hourglass runs out of sand
You can't flip it over and start again
Take every breathe God gives you for what it's worth

Don't blink, just like that you're six years old
And you take a nap
And you wake up and you're twenty-five
And your high school sweetheart becomes your wife

Don't blink, you just might miss
Your babies growing like mine did
Turning into moms and dads
Next thing you know your better half

Of fifty years is there in bed
And you're praying God takes you instead
Trust me friend a hundred years goes
Faster than you think, so don't blink

So I've been trying to slow it down
I've been trying to take it in
In this here today gone tomorrow world we're living in

So don't blink, just like that you're six years old
And you take a nap
And you wake up and you're twenty-five
And your high school sweetheart becomes your wife

Don't blink, you just might miss
Your babies growing like mine did
Turning into moms and dads
Next thing you know your better half

Of fifty years is there in bed
And you're praying God takes you instead
Trust me friend a hundred years goes
Faster than you think, so don't blink

No, don't blink
Don't blink
Life goes faster than you think
So don't blink

Life goes faster than you think
Don't blink
Don't blink
Life goes faster than you think

Friday, March 11, 2011

A Little Bit Stronger



There is a country artist named Sara Evans who has this song called "A Little Bit Stronger" which I have found myself listening to on YouTube off and on.  It reminds me not only of 'failed' romantic relationships in my life, but of family, friends, work, life itself.  There are so many areas in life it can apply to - I particularly am drawn to the following four lines:

"I know my heart will never be the same.
But I'm telling myself I'll be okay,
Even on my weakest days,
I get a little bit stronger."

Currently things are going pretty well in my life, especially with my health which is nice, and I just felt like attempting to post a video since I have not done that yet with this blog.  I hope everyone has a wonderful weekend, and perhaps some part of this song touches someone - it does help me to know that wherever I am in life, I can always "get a little bit stronger" - if I am absolutely content (or if I am having the most crappy day of my life)!  Life changes, every minute of every hour of every day.

Full song lyrics for "A Little Bit Stronger" by Sara Evans:
Woke up late today,
And I still feel the sting of the pain,
But I brushed my teeth anyway.
I got dressed through the mess,
And put a smile on my face.
I got a little bit stronger.

Riding in the car to work,
And I'm trying to ignore the hurt.
So I turned on the radio,
Stupid song made me think of you.
I listened to it for a minute,
But then I changed it.
I'm getting a little bit stronger,
Just a little bit stronger.

And I'm done hoping we can work it out,
I'm done with how it feels
Spinning my wheels,
Letting you drag my heart around.
And I'm done thinking you could ever change,
I know my heart will never be the same.
But I'm telling myself I'll be okay,
Even on my weakest days,
I get a little bit stronger.

It doesn't happen overnight,
But you turn around and a months gone by,
And you realize you haven't cried.
I'm not giving you an hour, or a second, or another minute longer.
I'm busy getting stronger.

And I'm done hoping we can work it out,
I'm done with how it feels
Spinning my wheels,
Letting you drag my heart around.
And I'm done thinking you could ever change,
I know my heart will never be the same.
But I'm telling myself I'll be okay,
Even on my weakest days,
I get a little bit stronger.
I get a little bit stronger.

Getting along without you baby,
Better off without you baby,
How does it feel without me baby?
I'm getting stronger without you baby.

And I'm done hoping we can work it out,
I'm done with how it feels
Spinning my wheels,
Letting you drag my heart around.
And I'm done thinking you could ever change,
I know my heart will never be the same.
But I'm telling myself I'll be okay,
Even on my weakest days,
I get a little bit stronger.

I get a little bit stronger.
Just a little bit stronger.
Little bit, little bit, little bit stronger.
Get a little bit stronger.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Zephyr


I suppose I should have mentioned Zeph at an earlier point in the year but I simply forgot.  Sorry!  He is a cute terrier mix of some sort (adopted about five years ago) and in this photo decided he wanted to jump up on the flowerbed in the backyard and climb onto the little piece of cement that juts out under the neighbor's fence.  He is small (growing up my family had two larger lab mixes, so although Zeph is "grown up" I always think of him as a puppy) but fun to play and cuddle with.

Decided to post his photo and ramble a bit about him today because he was helpful in keeping things calm this past weekend.  My aunt and sister are both back to normal, and although I did catch a bit of my aunts' cold I am all better - except for my throat in the evenings.  I did get to finish up all of my homework that was due, and did a bit extra so all I have left before my ten-year-reunion this Saturday is to finish the chapter I am on and take a measly three-point-quiz so that is nice.

The past few days I also decided to go ahead and continue with the "Little Women" series, so I have now finished both "Little Men" and "Jo's Boy's" - not quite sure what I am going to read next, I have suggestions for new books but part of me wants to re-read the Christopher Paolini books (Eragon, Eldest, and Brisingr - the fourth and final book is not completed yet).  Each book is roughly 500-700 pages long if I recall correctly... am also thinking of picking though the Harry Potter series and re-reading my favorite books/chapters in certain books.

Let's see... Oh!  How could I forget to mention today is Ash Wednesday?  Since this year started with many health difficulties for myself, I feel as though I started Lent much earlier than usual.  This year I am working on making my body much healthier.  Part of me feels as though I am cheating just a bit, but I really have done a 180 with most of my food choices.  Aside from eating tons of fruits and veggies, I am sticking to lean meats (less than 7% fat), eggs, and a limited amount of whole wheat/whole grain carbohydrates (pretty much just a slice of bread for an open faced sandwich and oatmeal with dried fruits added for flavor).  Prior to the end of January I lived most of my life eating tons of white carbs, white sugar, lots of cheese (I miss macaroni and cheese, as well as cookies and chips)...

Eating out has not happened at all in the past two months, which makes me sad because I am very selfish and loved to get In 'n' Out or order in a pizza pretty much once a week.  Neglecting fruits and veggies might I add.  So  I have changed my diet and for Lent am going to try and really stick to it, as well as getting in walks with Zeph to the park down the road and perhaps joining an aerobic or yoga class of some sort nearby.  I also want to try and be more on top of housework - dusting, sweeping, dishes, and laundry... So three areas to focus on during Lent - healthy food, increasing exercise, and staying on top of housework.  Shall see what happens and try to remember to update at least twice a week!

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Brief update...


Okay, let me see if I can ramble briefly...

Thursday night I was actually able to fall asleep early, but then was woken up by a friendly phone call and unfortunately ended up spending a good two hours trying to fall back asleep - partially because I had not made it to the grocery store nor was I able to find my camera.

Friday I slept through my first alarm but I had set another and was able to make it to my aunts' where I ended up spending roughly eight hours - most with my six-month-old cousin!  She was so cute and did not cry much at all - very unusual for her but it made the day more fun for me!  (Still wish I had a camera though - oh well).  As the day progressed I noticed my aunt had a sore throat and developed a bit of a fever -- it turns out that it was a great day for me to help her out.  We picked up my seven-year-old cousin from school; the four of us went grocery shopping; I played with both my cousins while my aunt was able to rest and then take a nap...

Friday night I left feeling happy and tired - then got a phone call that my sister was in the E.R. because of bloody bowl movements and they were keeping her at least overnight.  Obviously I was then awake and worried about her.  Luckily she had her own temporary room and I could call (her cell phone battery of course was dying) - we talked off and on until after midnight, and in between calls I started reading Louisa May Alcotts' story "Little Women" to help my mind not wander.

Fell asleep roughly around one in the morning, then was up again at seven to call and see how my sisters' night went - okay overall but she couldn't talk long because another doctor showed up.  I napped for another two hours then spent most of Saturday finishing "Little Women" and playing the waiting game, seeing if she was to be released after her colonoscopy or if she would have to stay another night (in which case I was going to go and stay for at least several hours in the evening.

Luckily everything came back clear and she was released late Saturday afternoon.  I made it to the grocery store but did not get around to my homework.  Guess I need to get that done now!  Thankful that things are much better - except the dog is now barking so I am off to see if it is the mailman or someone walking by the front door :)

[Okay, not a brief rambling, but I guess that was not going to happen]

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Books and, of course, ramblings!



How are we already three days into March?  Sorry for lack of posts in February, it has taken me a while to get my health back on track.  Have been doing alright overall which is good and I have changed my eating habits which is great for my body.  Most of my life I never ate the recommended amounts of fruits and vegetables, and I am now pretty much on what I called a "rabbit" food plan.  Lots of salads, bowls of mixed fruits, handfuls of dried berries and sunflower seeds, and some type of lean meat/fish for lunch or dinner daily along with steamed veggies.  I have also been eating either hard-boiled or scrambled eggs and whole wheat/whole grain/high fiber oatmeal, bread, or pasta when I have indulged by adding carbs to my new food plan.  I have been craving french fries, stuffed crust pizza and juicy cheeseburgers, but overall I have now adjusted to my "new" foods.  My body is now much healthier and I am hoping the next few months will be doctor free -- I think I had four or five trips in the month of February alone!


Moving on to more pleasant subjects -- the down time gave me an opportunity to continue reading very thick books, four following the historical fiction path that I had started on earlier in the year ("The Queen's Fool" by Philippa Gregory; "The Boleyn Inheritance" also by Philippa Gregory; "The Lady Elizabeth" by Alison Weir; and "I, Elizabeth" by Rosalind Miles - honestly the last was a bit too dry but I wanted to finish it anyway).  As a breath of fresh air, I came across a bookshelf with multiple books I own written by Louisa May Alcott.  She is usually best known for her book "Little Women" (which is actually the first of three - the other two being "Little Men" and "Jo's Boys" - I have not yet re-read those particular three although they are also good for the soul).  Instead I have completed three of her lesser known books which are great when it comes to reminding me of years gone by and friendly society - "Eight Cousins" followed by "Rose in Bloom" and finally "An Old-Fashioned Girl" - all interesting books by Louisa May Alcott, probably one of my favorite authors.   I am now torn in three ways - wanting to re-read her "Little Women" trilogy, interested in re-reading Laura Ingalls Wilders' collection of seven books, or going towards fantasy fiction - dragons/wizards.

During February and these first few days in March I have already spent (and have plans to spend) time with various family and friends - new friends as well as old friends.  In particular I wanted to mention my youngest cousin because tomorrow she turns six months old!  I do need to find the darn camera though, I do not believe I have a single photo of us together - let alone my other family members these past two years!  Also next weekend (March 12th) I have my ten year high school reunion and the following Saturday (March 19th) a large family gathering - lots of opportunities for various photos!

Time for homework, housework, and a quick trip to the grocery store before dinner... There are still puddles on the ground and not a patch of blue sky can be seen but it is not raining so I think I might head to the store first - I hope everyone is enjoying this first week in March!  Thanks again to everyone who has shared their blogs (and/or facebook pages) with me, I love being a part of others lives - even if it is from far away/as a stranger!

Monday, February 14, 2011

Happy Valentine's Day!


Happy Valentine's Day to everyone!  I used to make felt woven hearts (the photo above is an example of one made with paper, not felt) and fill them with little notes/chocolates/whatnot and give them out to pretty much anyone.

Wanted to say thanks to all of my friends and family who support me; unfortunately I have not posted anything this month other than the ramblings of the E.R. because I have still been sick which is very frustrating.  Have been to my specialist and the regular doctor plus need to get in sometime this week to have more blood drawn and tested for who-knows-what.

For everyone whose blogs I am actively following thank you for providing distraction on the rare days I have signed into the computer - I have not even been able to play my [two] pointless facebook games to keep me distracted....

Enough of bothersome stuff - today is a day that I like because it reminds me of Christmas time - it is another opportunity to offer thanks for the people I know (or have yet to meet) in my life, and a time to look for the positive things in life!

I have my ten-year high school reunion coming up in March and have been finding old classmates on facebook which has been fun... I have been able to spend time especially with my youngest cousin (over five months old now!)... My best friend and her husband sent tons of photos of my godson and his twin sister showing their antics during this new year (very much appreciated since they live in France - but they will be back in CA this summer!!!)... I am not in the hospital and am able to live through other people's lives when mine is sliding downhill which helps me to dig in and climb back up to health : )

Also - how could I forget to mention this?? - my neighbors had their first child, a baby girl, at 3:33am on February 13th in a home birth and the family of three (five if you include their two dogs) are all happy and healthy, plus they want me to spend a few days a week with the new baby!  Did I mention enough how much I love children?

Alright, wrapping this up because I'm heading out to buy my books for the spring semester (another child development course - turns out I have two left before being able to complete my second degree - and an online women health course for fun) and then am planning to watch tv after a lovely home cooked dinner.

Hope everyone smiles about something today, and thanks again to all of you who help lift my spirits even when you don't know it!

Saturday, February 5, 2011

E.R. = frustration!!

Home for about two hours now, but today turned out to be insanely frustrating instead of the relaxing Saturday I was hoping for.  Thankfully a family friend and his buddy were willing to drive me to the E.R. - I of course was quite concerned and freaked out because I have never been told I was not allowed to drive myself - not to mention the cost of an ambulance...

(Warning - if you ate a good meal, wait to read this post, and I'm sorry for the detail!)

Pulling to explain - I had tried an over the counter medicine for the first time, and apparently my body really disliked it.  I woke up just after 2am to rush to the bathroom where I threw up and had diarrhea.  I then put my pj's in the washer, cleaned the bathroom, and collapsed on my bed immediately falling asleep.  End of story, right?  Nope.  I called the number on the side of the box after I woke up and the lady said throwing up was very abnormal and I needed to contact my doctor immediately.  Since I had slept until about noon then talked to her, Kaiser was closed and I had to talk with an after hours nurse.

The after hours people put me on hold - after an HOUR of listening and waiting I was given the option to hang up and they would "save my place in line."  Another hour and a half went by, then the phone rang.  I started to describe what had happened, but with my past medical stuff and the projectile vomit (apparently orange is a serious concern as a vomit color??  I have not thrown up in over five years so I have no clue about that), the after-hours advice nurse insisted that I shouldn't drive myself but I should show up ASAP (taking no more than three hours to arrive, and to call for a taxi or an ambulance if I couldn't find a ride).

First of all, if it was so urgent why did they put me on hold/not call me back for two and a half hours?  Secondly I am so thankful that I had a family friend jump on the opportunity to help me when I needed it - they rushed and less than ten minutes later I had a ride waiting outside my door.  Traffic getting to the hospital, but within minutes of arriving I had been checking in and passed over a half-full waiting room, given my hospital gown, and was laying on a gurney waiting for my second-ever IV.  (I really hate needles, and IVs scare the hell out of me - most of the time I faint when I have to get my blood drawn).

Those five minutes were the most relaxing of the entire time if that's possible.  "My" room was needed, so I was put in the hall "just for five or ten minutes" - which turned out to be the entire duration of my afternoon/evening in the E.R.  So fun!  Lots of boring stuff went on, I read a bit of another book, and finally hours later the doctor dropped by to say my blood work had come back, everything was fine.  A few minutes later the nurse came by to take out my IV and I asked what exactly my diagnosis was - "you are nauseous"... WERE THEY KIDDING??  Five hours and all they could say was I was nauseous and to call/come back if I threw up again??

Yep.  That's it.  Got my discharge papers, was given a cup of orange juice with potassium powder in it (apparently the only thing they found was that my potassium levels were just a *tiny* bit low so they figured it wouldn't hurt to give me some before sending me home) - and I very, very luckily had my ride waiting for me to drive me home to take care of my dog who was feeling very abandoned.  I am tired and can't believe I let the after-hours person convince me to go to the E.R. (after I had only thrown up around 2 in the morning, nothing after that!) and give them a lovely $50 co-pay.  Thank God I have insurance - I am going to bed now and hopefully shall fall asleep the minute I hit the pillow and just sleep for hours and hours. 


Not trying to complain, just can't believe the stress of what was to be a simple day - and then having the doctors decide there was nothing wrong - why did I go again?  Oh, right, I didn't want it to be something worse like the after-hours nurse implied.  So very, very tired right now :/  Anyone willing to give me a hug or a back massage?  Even a kind phone call would help...

::HUGS:: Off to bed - sweet dreams world!

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Senior Portrait



Since the computer is being bothersome I am spending as little time on it as possible (yesterday and today at least, hopefully tomorrow I should have time to look at it properly)!  Decided to attach my high school senior portrait (class of 2001) because this March is the ten-year-reunion gathering.  Tempus Fugit!!  Lovely gentle rain today, as a random side note!!

Friday, January 28, 2011

A Quote...


"When I was five years old, my parents always told me that happiness was the key to life. When I went to school, they asked me what I wanted to be when I grew up. I wrote down 'happy.' They told me I didn't understand the assignment and I told them they didn't understand life."

I do not know who wrote this, nor when I first read it, but it follows my life and thought process very well.  [Although I am not sure this is the exact quote I read, but it is close enough].  So I have decided that today I am going to ramble a bit about being happy living life.  I have believed from the time I was very young that being happy was the most important thing growing up.  I understand that people can see "being happy" from different points of view, but for me being happy centers around family, nature, and an overall positive spirit.

Family and friends are quite important, not only because of the support they can offer you, but because of the support we can offer in return.  Trying to be a good person, offering help, not deliberately hurting people, volunteering -- these are all positive things.  I also think that having a family of my own one day will make me happy, but who knows -- perhaps being happy includes everything mentioned above (and either more or less!) but not being married.

At this point in my life I do not see how I would be completely happy without the love of my life being a part of my life, for me to support him and for him to be there to support me -- but life has gone on for so many people who say they are happy... And I know that I have had brilliantly wonderful happy moments/times in my life without being married.  So perhaps this year I should step back from the idea that I have in my head that includes a husband (and child/ren) and focus more on myself and creating happy moments for others.

Not sure where my ramblings are going, have lost my train of thought for the moment, so I shall end this blog for now.  I do hope that today everyone remembers something/some point in time that made them happy, and smiles at least once!

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Family and more books

Starting off with an update to my list of books I have read in 2011 - four more to add to the list.  Two follow the train of historical fiction set in England and the other two veer from that path into my "random assorted books" section.  The first two: Mademoiselle Boleyn" by Robin Maxwell and "The King's Confidante" by Jean Plaidy; the second two: "Waiter Rant" by Steve Dublanica and "Mr. Darcy's Little Sister" by C. Allyn Pierson.  Not sure at the moment if I shall be continuing with historical fiction (I only have one or two more books before I move into Edward, Mary, and Elizabeth - which would be a large step forward from the "older" England)... I might stick to my "random assorted books" though.

Alright, getting back to the point for this particular blog, family.  Specifically I have been in the mood to write about all of the lovely babies that have become a part of our lives over the past two years!  There must have been something in the water because when I try to compute the amount of babies that have arrived in relationships that previously had zero children - let me try and start with the youngest and work my way up (apologies in advance for being off by a few weeks for some of these, they all seemed to appear at the same time!)...

four (and a half)-month-old girl
six-month-old girl
nine-month-old twins (a boy and a girl)
ten-month-old boy
13-month-old girl (Have not met her, and rarely hear about her, so am VERY fuzzy about her age; I know she is between 11 and 15 months old)
16-month-old boy
17-month-old twins (a boy and a girl)
19-month-old girl

...Then the jump to a seven-year-old cousin, then another jump up to a 15-year-old cousin, followed by a third jump up to a 20-year-old cousin.  So in the past 20 years there had been very few babies around, then in the last year and a half basically there are babies popping up like beautiful angelic flowers in our lives!  I love little kids; spent the past two summers co-running a preschool summer camp and the past two semesters helping in an infant/toddler classroom then a toddler classroom.  (I received my B.A. with honors in 2006, but since then have slowly been working on a child development certification/degree at a local community college while working).

Ramblings.  Yes, I do ramble quite often!!  Okay, so although there have been many new babies, I have been invited to spend time with the four and a half-month-old the most (every Wednesday since she was born, except for maybe four days scattered in here and there); quite a bit of time with the nine-month-old twins and the 19-month old girl; also have been invited to spend time with the six-month-old girl (unfortunately I have been an ungrateful cousin and spent time with her only at family gatherings so far)... Oh, and I have spend some time around the 10-month-old boy as well.  Wow, that took much longer than I realized to figure out ages and type this all out!  I wonder if it will make sense when read...perhaps not.  Hmmm....

I also wanted to mention that across the street there is a young couple expecting their first child in about five weeks, and they want me to come by and help a few days a week, so I am looking forward to having that opportunity as well : )  Yesterday I spent several hours with my four and a half-month-old cousin, and although I love her to pieces, she makes me want to spend time with more babies!! 

Anyone have a 0-5 year old child, live in Southern California, and have an interest in inviting an experienced babysitter/mothers helper/CPR and First Aid certified individual over to visit?  I love working/playing with little kids, and as everyone with children (or who work with young children) knows, spending time with children is pretty much the next best thing to "laughter is the best medicine" in life : )  ...More randomness from me, but I have been thinking about taking an au pair/live-in nanny position, perhaps a travel one - last month marked ten years for me being an employee for Recreation and Parks, much of that time spent in the camping division/child care... I have my passport and am a bit tired of feeling like I am always in the same place [not true, but it feels that way sometimes unfortunately]...

I don't know.  Am feeling a bit off recently.  More reading and more time with children!  I hope everyone is doing well, especially those who have asked for prayers (or who I know need them and I am praying for anyway - too many family/extended family/friends have become quite ill the past two months, many requiring surgery, including the 10-month-old boy)... Prayers and positive vibes and hope being sent to all who need it  ::HUGS::

*Edit - I feel this post is quite rambling but I am not in the proper mindset to re-write it and make it more clear at the moment.  Perhaps later?

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Versatile Blogger Award


Yay!  Apparently I have people reading my rather random, very rambling blog because Nathalie has tagged me in her "The Versatile Blogger" post!  (This is the first time I have ever written a blog, so although I was able to save the image, I am not sure I have created the correct link to her post - let me know if there are problems/if anyone has questions for me please??)  Continuing with ramblings now...

Here are the rules for the award:

Tell your readers ten things about yourself that you might not have divulged before, and pass the award on to seven new people at blogs that are fairly new to you.

So 10 things about myself that I haven't divulged before:


1) I decided to title my blog "Rose Rambling" because (obviously!) I ramble; including "Rose" as part of the title was also an obvious choice for me though.  I spent several summers as a camp counselor/junior camp counselor and we were able to pick our own "Nature Names" instead of using our "regular" first names.  I rarely react to someone calling out the name Rose now, but every now and then I still turn my head, especially if it is a child calling.

2) My profile photo for this blog was taken mid-summer 2010, the day that I donated my hair for the second time to Locks For Love (a great program that takes donated hair and creates wigs for those who have had cancer).  My first time I donated almost exactly 12" of hair; however, this past summer I was able to donate just over 15" of hair!  Not only did it feel great to donate to a great cause, but I also got a fun summer haircut and my shower time was drastically shortened!

3) When I was younger (roughly ages 0-8 years) my family and I would visit friends in Mexico, or they would come to visit us, every single summer.  So thanks to my family [and family friends] I am able to speak Spanish - although I have not been practicing anywhere near as often as I should!  I think my communication ability has unfortunately dropped to simple conversational skills, but I do still understand much more Spanish than I am able to speak.

4) I have taken several semesters of American Sign Language (ASL) for fun, and although my lack of practice (again!) has caused me to lose my fluidity, I can still manage reasonably well when communicating with hard-of-hearing or Deaf individuals.  I should start getting back into Deaf Culture, it was fun learning a new way to communicate.

5)  I do not drink coffee (even though I do tend to enjoy the smell of it).  I tend to drink tea (sometimes with sugar, never with milk) or hot chocolate when I am cold or feeling under the weather.  As for "regular" drinks I usually stick to flat water or juice; occasionally soda or chocolate milkshakes find their way into the mix.

6) I really dislike scary/horror anything - books, movies, music, you name it.  I turn into a huge scaredy-cat and I want to take this opportunity to blame part of my family (even though I love them all!) - especially my two older cousins and my mom - for this dislike.  My cousins would hide then jump out at me/grab at me and my mom never liked anything scary/horror so growing up it was natural to follow her lead.  This past Halloween was the first time I willingly attempted to watch a scary movie and to continue my honest streak, I had nightmares off and on for a couple of weeks.

7) I don't want to "waste" a number here by mentioning things that have come up in my previous blogs, so I am going to try and cram in the most important points into one number (hopefully I am not cheating too much)!  I really love to read, spend time with family and friends, be in nature, and volunteer/work with kids.

8)  One summer when I was in elementary school I won an award for bowling - but I think it was part of the six-week-long bowling camp my parents had put me in, it likely had nothing to do with my bowling abilities : )  I do enjoy going bowling when the opportunity presents itself though!

9)  I decided to start a blog partially because I had never blogged before.  I had bookmarked an old roommates blog a few years back and followed it that way; after I joined facebook I noticed more friends who had blogs.  I have started to followed their blogs, their friends blogs, or other blogs that I find interesting for one reason or another.  (For example, one blog I am following is an anonymous teacher who spent every single day of last school year eating, taking photos of, and commenting on the food in her cafeteria.  The exact same food most of her students were forced to eat she secretly voluntarily ate and commented on - I found it quite interesting for various reasons).  I hope that no one has found me to be unwelcome or bothersome by me choosing to follow them - I do hope that in return everyone feels more than welcome to read/follow my blog!

10) Save the best for last, right?  Okay so my favorite thing that I have not shared yet? This past summer I became a godmother for the very first time!  My best friend had twins in the spring (a girl and a boy) and I became the godmother to an adorable little boy!  I miss the family so much right now because they do not live in the USA, but I am looking forward to them visiting California next summer!  (So that might just be the best for me, but still.  My blog, my ramblings, right? *grins*)

Okay, so Nathalie said I am to pass this award onto seven other people, but I don't have anyone following my blog officially so I am not quite sure how to pass it on.  I am going to steal her words in lieu of knowing how to tag people, so... "If you're reading this though and would like to join in, please do! Leave a comment to let me know so that I can read it too."


Thanks for reading and I hope everyone has a wonderful week!

Monday, January 24, 2011

My favorite painting



Several years ago I went to the "new" J. Paul Getty Museum here in California.  It was my first time at this museum and it had recently re-opened (hence me referring to it as "new").  I went with family, friends, and quite unfortunately a fever somewhere around 104 degrees.  Yes, I know I should not have gone while sick, but I did not want to miss the opportunity.  Having such a high temperature combined with other not-good feelings has left me with a very, very hazy memory of that day.  I remember walking quite a bit, liking the shapes of the buildings along with some of the artwork, and really enjoying the garden and water features on the property.

At some point we must have viewed Winslow Homer's oil painting titled "Sunlight and Shadow" because I know I had never seen it before.  I apparently expressed an interest in it (though I have no memory of this!) and secretly my parents purchased a poster copy of the painting which was given to me when I moved into my first college dorm room [several hours away from home].  I LOVE this painting.  It reminds me of so many things - nature, relaxing, enjoying reading... The dress the lady has on is even a blue tone (and I love the color blue).

I could go on and on about this painting, but hopefully I shall successfully attach an image of it below so you can look at it, enjoy it, and learn a bit about me because I would love to be this lady and I often try to do what she does.  I had a hammock for a while, but I love to lay back and look up at the leaves, at the sky... I love to read, and this image always reminds me of my family who are very important to me as well.

Anyway, enough ramblings for the moment, hopefully this image will make you smile, (or at least help you remember something that makes you relax).  Have a wonderful week filled with sunshine!

Still can't sleep...

...so I decided to come online.  Unfortunately nothing comes to mind except the people I want to be talking with, how late (or early, depending on how you look at it!) it is, and the fact that I am in the mood for pancakes and bacon.  Or even scrambled eggs and bacon.  Too lazy and tired to make any foodings at the moment.

Today I have not accomplished much (well, I did read a new book and re-read one I've had on my bookshelf for a while) and I find my mind drifting back and recalling good and bad moments in life.  If I could have a hug - several actually - perhaps my mind would settle down.  Then again, perhaps not.

Saturday, January 22, 2011

As promised, books!

Books make me happy - they have been a part of my life since before I could actually read (although I would pretend of course) and as mentioned earlier this month I am likely to write several blogs that include books I am reading, have read, or shall read in the future.

I was never that interested in history classes as I was growing up.  In more recent years however, I discovered that I enjoyed reading historical fiction -- I could imagine along with the author and learn about history without becoming bored.  Historical fiction about England around the time of Henry VII, Henry VIII (and his six wives), Edward, Mary, and Elizabeth I are my number one interest... I also am becoming interested in historical fiction based in ancient Egypt, around the time of Cleopatra.

This month I have decided to read/re-read books from my historical fiction collection and have completed five so far - I have attempted to read/re-read them in historical order, although there is some overlap in time.  The books ranged anywhere from 287 pages up to 661 pages in length.

"To Hold The Crown" by Jean Plaidy; "The Constant Princess" by Philippa Gregory; "The Secret Bride" by Diane Haeger; "The Other Boleyn Girl" by Philippa Gregory; and "Mary Queen Of France" by Jean Plaidy are the five I have completed so far.  I am planning on reading another four to six books from this time period, then moving on.

When it comes to series, I am planning (during the next eleven months) to re-read the Harry Potter books, several books by Louisa May Alcott, various C.S. Lewis pieces, Laura Ingalls Wilder series on her own life, and what I call my "children books" which range from "Twenty-One Balloons" by William Pene du Bois to "The Girl With The Silver Eyes" by Willo Davis Roberts.

Although I do love to read, I shall be saving a future blog for movies/DVDs I have watched in the past few months/am planning to watch in the next few months.  Any suggestions for music, books, or movies are welcome, as are suggestions for titles for future blogs... Hope that everyone has a wonderful week!

*Edit: Forgot to include "Doomed Queen Anne" by Carolyn Meyer which makes six books.

This evening I just finished a seventh "Portrait of an Unknown Woman" by Vanora Bennett - different from most historical fictions from this period, with the focus is on Sir Thomas More and more of his home life though the eyes of one of his adopted daughters (Meg Giggs) verses the court life during the time of Henry VIII.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Thinking

This month I do not feel as though I have been "doing" much; more often I simply find myself "thinking"... Which can be about anything, anyone, and anytime.  Another song has been in my head (although I was up late last night as well and finished another book - need to blog about reading, perhaps tomorrow)... A song some may be familiar with, or can at least Google...

"You've got to know when to hold 'em/ Know when to fold 'em/ Know when to walk away/ Know when to run/ You never count your money/ When you're sittin' at the table/ There'll be time enough for countin'/ When the dealin's done"

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Music, not books

Surprisingly for me, I have been getting songs (or particular artists) stuck in my head recently.  Don't get me wrong, I have read/re-read several books since this new year began, but today it has been all Frank Sinatra, all day.  What are some snippets from his top three (well, top three on my mind today) songs that have been floating around in my head you ask?  As follows...

"Come fly with me, let's fly, let's fly away" ... "I've got the world on a string/ I'm sitting on a rainbow" ... "Fly me to the moon/ Let me play among the stars/ Let me see what spring is like/ On a-Jupiter and Mars" ...

There are so many artists I enjoy listening to, but most of the music I lean towards can be classified as Country (I grew up with it and love it so please don't groan at me thank you in advance!), Christmas (I have a large family who I love and it is always a big holiday), and Classics.

Now don't ask me what songs/artists fall into what category please, nor should you assume I dislike others because these three are my "favorite" categories.  I listen to pretty much anything except electronica/high pitched/alien type sounds that go on forever and honestly make my eardrums feel like bleeding.  I listen to pretty much anything, especially if I am with someone - whether in a car for a quick trip to grab food, at a pub listening to different groups perform, or at a concert (the last I do rarely, but it has happened).

The title of this post made me pause because I do read quite a bit, so I suppose one of my future posts should include some of the books I have read and those I am interested in reading.  Until then, my unknown audience, I hope that you all have had a wonderful day and that tomorrow is even better!

Monday, January 17, 2011

Another year...

I have been listening to Michael Buble recently - "Another winter day/ Has come and gone away/ In even Paris and Rome/ And I wanna go home/ Let me go home" - it has reminded me of family and friends that I miss.  Reminds me of people from my past and those I have yet to meet.

Trying to write anything that gets posted and writing to an unknown audience makes me wonder what I should really say.  I shall ramble quite often, mention how I have been a bookworm my entire life, that I love nature, and I am looking for people who are willing to be friends with me.

I enjoy making new friends, love spending time with infants/toddlers, and am good at various arts and crafts.  When it comes to meeting new people I have found that the internet helps me because I have always been a bit on the shy side.  It can be difficult for me to approach others, yet I never walk away from anyone who needs me.

This is the first month of a new year, and while time marches on I have felt stuck recently.  Hopefully sharing my ramblings and following others I shall share, learn, and grow in ways I can only imagine.  I found a quote that I feel is quite fitting today, on the 25th anniversary of the USA celebrating the life of Martin Luther King Jr, who said: "In the end, we will remember not the words of our enemies, but the silence of our friends."

Looking forward to meeting new friends, improving the friendships I already have, and reconnecting with those I have been out of touch with.