It has been a beautiful week of baseball in our house! OH YEAH!! Can I just say, wait, my blog, yes. I. can!!! The Yankees SWEPT the Sox - three games this week. OUCH!
Last night, we went to the stadium; not the Yankee stadium because we don't live THERE, but to Mc Arthur, no now it's P&C or is it? Anyway the Yank farm team was playing against our locals, who are owned by the Boo Jays. So we went to root for - of course - the Yanks!
We were bored out of our ever loving minds. The second inning lasted forever. Which is where we left. The Yanks won, Naturally!
The kids had fun; they each had spending money, bought junk food, in the form of pure junk. Cotton candy at $4, fried dough at $4, which was microwaved and chewy and disgusting. A coke for $2.50 - very tasty! The best was the ice cream at $3 - could have bought a 1/2 gallon, but hey, it was fun!
I love the Yankees! The stinker about watching the game yesterday was this: I had to leave in the middle of the 7th inning to take Marisa to her Sophmore orientation. No big deal, I have radio in my van, I can turn it on and get the game on, right. They were ahead.
When I left the house, I was totally SIKED!!!! Revved for the Yanks. All of a sudden, as I'm headed to the school and Chamberlain is pitching, he gets thrown from the game; WTF!!! AND so does Torre! Now, being in the car, with announcers not really knowing what's going on, and I can't see what's happening. I'm. just. a. freaking. out. of. my. MIND!!!!!!! SERIOUSLY!
Not to mention, I had left my stupid phone at home charging, WHICH, I don't ever use for anything BUT an emergency. This renders an emergency. Totally. As I have NO freaking idea what's going on; the announcers don't understand why Chamberlain is being thrown out for two, TWO high pitches, and no, NO NO NO NO, did I mention, NO warning!!!!! (I'm just a little hyper at this point) WHAT IS GOING ON????? AHHH AHH AHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!
Now we enter the school, many breaks in the bad station, nothing more to be said about the game, and I am an entire ball of energy - wanting really only to know what is going on in the game. Hey, who are they going to put in? Hopefully, Rivera. MMMMMMmmmmmm. Be still my heart! I love to watch him clean up. Anyway, I can't, I am stuck in a steambath of testosterone and teenagers. Oh now this is fun.
But in reality, it was. My old alma mater, how weird, now my Cinderisa entering the gates. Did I NOT just post about old age! Stink! It's amazing how big the old high school is. I don't recognize it at all.
We searched and searched and freaking searched for locker and classrooms. We ran into old classmates, and she is so excited to start school next week.
At the same time, Christina had gone to her Welcome Back Bar-b-Que with a friend. Thankfully, because I cannot possibly be in two places at once. She was able to see some old teachers and former classmates; and she, too is anxious to start school.
This weekend, the three of them are off to the Big Apple with their Dad and step-Mom to visit new family they haven't yet met. Very exciting! They will see the Statue of Liberty and the Empire State Building.
As for me, I will collapse and watch the Yanks. Preferably with a glass of wine. I wish for you all a wonderful and safe holiday weekend.
LET'S GO YANKEES!!!!!!
Friday, August 31, 2007
Wednesday, August 29, 2007
Christina would NOT have enjoyed this. No, not at all. She would have rolled her eyes and growled his name; and told me how embarrassed she was. UGH, poor thing.
But Marisa and I just kept shopping, shopping shopping. (Yes, you must insert the Nemo-Dory thing going through your head when you read this. It works much better that way. ) Every once in a while, I would look back and make sure my littlest Marine was still there with me. In case, you know, I didn't hear rapid gun-fire and explosions. He really is a great sport.
Saturday, August 25, 2007
I received the following in an email from my husband this morning, and I liked it. It's not written by him, and I don't really know to whom to give credit to - but just the same, it is a lesson I thing we all can learn from:
The other day a young person asked me how I felt about being old. I was taken aback, for I do not think of myself as old. Upon seeing my reaction, she was immediately embarrassed, but I explained that it was an interesting question, and I would ponder it, and let her know.
Old Age, I decided, is a gift. I am now, probably for the first time in my life, the person I have always wanted to be. Oh, not my body! I sometime despair over my body, the wrinkles, the baggy eyes, and the sagging butt. And often I am taken aback by that old person that lives in my mirror (who looks like my mother!), but I don't agonize over those things for long.
I would never trade my amazing friends, my wonderful life, my loving family for less gray hair or a flatter belly. As I've aged, I've become more kind to myself, and less critical of myself. I've become my own friend. I don't chide myself for eating that extra cookie, or for not making my bed, or for buying that silly cement gecko that I didn't need, but looks so avante garde on my patio. I am entitled to a treat, to be messy, to be extravagant.
I have seen too many dear friends leave this world too soon; before they understood the great freedom that comes with aging. Whose business is it if I choose to read or play on the computer until 4 AM and sleep until noon? I will dance with myself to those wonderful tunes of the 60&70's, and if I, at the same time, wish to weep over a lost love ... I will.
I will walk the beach in a swim suit that is stretched over a bulging body, and will dive into the waves with abandon if I choose to, despite the pitying glances from the jet set. They, too, will get old. I know I am sometimes forgetful. But there again, some of life is just as well forgotten. And I eventually remember the important things.
Sure, over the years my heart has been broken. How can your heart not break when you lose a loved one, or when a child suffers, or even when somebody's beloved pet gets hit by a car? But broken hearts are what give us strength and understanding and compassion. A heart never broken is pristine and sterile and will never know the joy of being imperfect.
I am so blessed to have lived long enough to have my hair turning gray, and to have my youthful laughs be forever etched into deep grooves on my face. So many have never laughed, and so many have died before their hair could turn silver.
As you get older, it is easier to be positive. You care less about what other people think. I don't question myself anymore. I've even earned the right to be wrong. So, to answer your question, I like being old. It has set me free. I like the person I have become. I am not going to live forever, but while I am still here, I will not waste time lamenting what could have been, or worrying about what will be. And I shall eat dessert every single day. (If I feel like it)
MAY OUR FRIENDSHIP NEVER COME APART ESPECIALLY WHEN IT'S
STRAIGHT FROM THE HEART! MAY YOU ALWAYS HAVE A RAINBOW OF SMILES ON YOUR FACE AND IN YOUR HEART FOREVER AND EVER! FRIENDS FOREVER!
Now don't you feel just a bit freer to be your own age! I do, but I still won't let you know how young I am. By the way, by sister turned 40 yesterday. Happy Birthday, Denise!! She looks great!
Wednesday, August 22, 2007
Another monster got me. I've been down for days, and I'm going to try to get up today.
What really sucks is that I was hoping to have some fun with my kids on their last few weeks home before going back to school; but that just isn't going to happen this week. Maybe next week. Maybe we can all take a day trip to the Fair or go do some much-needed school shopping.
Tomorrow is supposed to hit 90, oh yeah. I'm sure I'll be calling my doc and pleading to get into the infusion center. I should be there now, but I'm stupidly holding out. For what, I'm not really sure. I'm actually hanging in there relatively OK, compared to what I used to feel; so I guess that's what I'm gauging it against. Regardless, I know where I'll be same time, next week.
Until then, just gonna hold on.
Monday, August 20, 2007
Friday, August 17, 2007
The day has finally come! The tweens, pre-tweens, teens and even my six year old have anxiously been awaiting this day. The day that Troy, our handsome basketball captain; and the brainy and beautiful Gabriella will bring their flashy styles back to our TV.
What am I doing about it? I'm hosting a party of course! A High School Musical Party, in honor of the movie. Hey, things could be worse; my kids could be into sicko movies like Friday the 13th and the like. But they're not.
When I first came to the idea of this party, I mentioned it to my 12 year old; who naturally, being very embarrassed of my life in the universe at all, shot it down like I was serving liver and onions for breakfast! "That's stupid! I don't want a party for THAT!!" she said, so sweetly.
"No problem, I'll have Marisa invite her friends because they will LOVE the idea!" I told her, and I was right. Marisa jumped on it - "Oh, can I invite Emily, she loves HSM, that will be so much fun!"
Not only did I let Emily in on the party, but I secretly invited some neighbors, well, they happen to be Christina's, a/k/a the 12 year old's, best friend. and her sister. and mom and dad. But the girls are in the dark about it. I can't wait to see her reaction!
So while the kids are singing and dancing and carrying on; the adults will be hanging out on the deck, listening to them having fun. No doubt, getting those silly songs stuck in our head, yet again. Call it the last Hurrah. The party to end the summer for them. Oh, and yes, even Nicholas has a friend coming for the party.
Kids love this movie! Of all ages, too. I loved it; and I'm thrilled that my kids will still sit and watch shows like, 7th Heaven and love movies like Little Women. It's just sad that they are becomming the minority on TV; the wholesome, Godly shows, that is.
Well, I'm off to shop for our little party; put the video on to get them ready for it. Sing the songs from the last soundtrack. Are you singing the song in your head yet??
"We're all in this together......."
Have a beautiful weekend.
Thursday, August 16, 2007
It's starting; and though I hate to admit it, I've seen it coming for weeks. The colors of my beautiful flowers are starting to fade. The leaves on the trees have lost their brilliance as well. And even though my favorite season is Fall, I am sad to see the summer leave us behind.
In three, short weeks the kids will be going back to school. Nicholas will be starting First grade; a full day of school. The house is going to be so lonely and quiet. And sad. I am already sad for the first day to come. I'm just going to hang on to these last few weeks of summer and enjoy them.
These pictures here, with Nick on the trampolene and Frank and Tony, are at a friend's bar-b-que. While I was freaking out at the idea of him breaking his neck or falling to his death, he was actually having a ball jumping on it. All. by. himself.
Frank went back to work yesterday; not by his own doctor's orders, but by the plant doctor's. Don't you just love corporate America these days. I think he's happy to be back, actually. hey, it's good to be getting a paycheck and life back on track. It's still boggling my mind how fast he's recovering from having a complete replacement of his knee.
Tuesday, August 14, 2007
Whispering" Strokes Impair Quality of Life
Susan JeffreyCME Author: Charles Vega, MD DisclosuresRelease Date: August 3, 2007; Valid for credit through August 3, 2008
Physicians - maximum of 0.25 AMA PRA Category 1 Credit(s)™ for physicians;Family Physicians - up to 0.25 AAFP Prescribed credit(s) for physicians
August 3, 2007 — A report from the ongoing Reasons for Geographic and Racial Differences in Stroke (REGARDS) cohort study shows that individuals with symptoms consistent with stroke, but no previous stroke diagnosis, show reductions in quality-of-life parameters, including physical functioning and, to a lesser extent, mental functioning, compared with those without such symptoms.
"What we're trying to say is what we've been calling silent strokes really might not be all that silent," lead author George Howard, DrPH, from the School of Public Health at the University of Alabama, Birmingham, told Medscape.
Their findings are published online in the August 2 Stroke ASAP issue, in advance of print publication in the September issue of Stroke.
Strokes that are evident on brain imaging but do not produce symptoms are known as "silent" strokes. However, some of these so-called silent strokes may be accompanied by mild symptoms or deficits, Dr. Howard noted.
The authors propose instead the term "whispering" stroke, which Dr. Howard credits to coauthor James F. Meschia, MD, of Mayo Clinic in Jacksonville, Florida. The authors write, "that is, they could have clinically consistent symptoms that fail to result in a diagnosis of stroke or transient ischemic attack (TIA) either through the symptoms being insufficiently pronounced or persistent to raise concerns in the participant; or if clinical care was sought, the symptoms were not sufficiently defined to result in a diagnosis of stroke."
"Nevertheless, these symptoms could still be associated with potential subclinical deficits detected by systematic testing, and these subclinical deficits could be associated with a substantial population-level public health burden," they add.
This is the third in a series of reports from the REGARDS cohort looking at the occurrence of stroke symptoms in the absence of a diagnosis of stroke or TIA. The first of these, by Howard and colleagues and published in the October 9, 2006, issue of Archives of Internal Medicine, showed that, when screened actively, almost 18% of participants reported at least 1 stroke symptom without ever having had a stroke diagnosed, and those with more stroke risk factors were more likely to report stroke symptoms.
A second REGARDS study, by Wadley and colleagues and in press for publication in Stroke, showed that subjects with these stroke symptoms were twice as likely to show cognitive impairment as those without symptoms despite having no stroke diagnosis.
This third paper from the REGARDS group looks at quality of life in these subjects with stroke symptoms in the absence of recognized stroke. A large national cohort study, REGARDS includes black and white individuals older than 45 years. The researchers compared the average physical and mental functioning of 3404 subjects who had reported symptoms of stroke but had not had a clinical stroke diagnosed with those of individuals who had no symptoms of TIA or stroke (n = 16,090), who had a history of stroke (n = 1491), or who had a history of TIA (n = 818).
They assessed quality of life using the Physical and Mental Component Summary scores of the Short Form 12 (PCS-12 and MCS-12).
Ischemic Attacks, Not Transient?
The researchers report that, compared with those subjects without symptoms or a diagnosis of stroke, those with stroke symptoms but no diagnosed stroke had mean PCS-12 scores that were 5.5 points lower, a reduction similar to that seen in the group that had already had a TIA, where average PCS-12 scores were 6.0 points lower. This reduction constituted more than half of the effect of an actual clinical stroke, where patients with stroke had a PCS-12 score that averaged 8.4 points lower than those without any symptoms.
Differences in average MCS-12 scores were smaller but still significant; those with stroke symptoms but no diagnosed stroke had mean MCS-12 scores that were 2.7 points lower than those of individuals without symptoms. This difference was larger than that seen between symptom-free subjects and those with a history of TIA but no current symptoms, and those with a history of stroke but no current symptoms.
The differences were not fully explained by differences in demographic and vascular risk factors, health behaviors, physiological measures, and indices of socioeconomic status, they write.
Subjects who had reported symptoms of weakness or numbness had larger current decrements in physical functioning scores, and those who had reported an inability to express themselves or understand language had larger current deficits in mental functioning, they note
When these findings are considered along with those in the 2 previous REGARDS reports, Dr. Howard said, "what's developing is a picture that suggests, at least in my opinion, that these symptoms were small strokes that were either blown off by the participant or blown off by the doctor, and are really more important than people are giving them credit for."
The REGARDS group will be following this cohort to see whether those with stroke symptoms are at higher risk for clinical stroke, he said. "But if I were a betting man, I would bet that, just like people who have already had a TIA are at extraordinary risk for subsequent stroke, these people are going to be at extraordinary risk for subsequent stroke because frankly, I think what they are is undiagnosed TIAs."
It could be argued further that these TIAs are not transient at all. "If your cognitive functioning is impaired and your quality of life is impaired, some people would argue that that is symptomatic," he said.
This study was supported by a cooperative agreement from the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke. The authors have disclosed no relevant financial relationships.
Stroke. Published online August 2, 2007.
Please remember to contact your doctor no matter what your symptoms.
Sunday, August 12, 2007
He was more than reluctant about getting up there; and I believe they sang maybe 3 songs while he stood there just chewing away all nervous-like. On the last song, though, we saw him tap his foot a few times.
My favorite; was the drum part, which he does very well at home. His father is a drummer, and he and his step-Mom came to watch. His sister, Marisa is a drummer. She had been giving him some pointers all week, little lessons at home. We were jazzed about watching him get up and play his little man drum. But the poor little guy was terrified. He just demanded, literally, that he didn't want to do it.
I did feel for him, but I'm not going to let him just walk away from a responsibility like this. His little drum line was counting on his rythm. He needed to keep the beat for them. And as the instructor said, he was the one who was keeping everyone in time. So..........
"There's cupcakes??" he chimes in, with that winning grin of his; knowing there are sweets to be had.
And he had two cupcakes!
Good bye for now.