Thursday, December 20, 2012

Fat lip and broken nails

Looks like I was in a fight...with my braces!! I gave myself a fat lip this week and it still hurts.  Invisalign braces are like a clear plastic mouth guard but very tight.  The set I have for this 2-week period is super tight on top and I can't get the damn thing off to eat.  I broke most of my nails trying and the other day when I was prying them off I whacked myself, hard, in the lip! Six more months...I keep telling myself....6 more months! 

This isn't the best picture but I am holding my 5-day old great niece, Madelyn Marie! I now have 5 great nieces and 3 great nephews. There is another on the way this summer. They are between and 9 years and 1 week old and all cute as buttons!

Well, I am all ready for Christmas. I don't have a lot to do and I am not really feeling the spirit yet this year. I put a few lights outside and barely decorated the inside of the house. Go me!  I am going to have to find some kind of meaningfulness (is that a word Jim?) to the holidays because I don't like this bah humbug feeling.  I do volunteer on Christmas morning but it's the few weeks leading up to the holidays that I don't like. Maybe by next year this will change.

I wish all of my friends and family much love, a very Merry Christmas and a safe and prosperous 2013!

Friday, December 7, 2012

What I am up to...

It's that time of year again, Cookie Exchange!  I have to make 5 dozen cookies tomorrow and wrap them in 1/2 dozen packages.   I will take them to a very nice luncheon and exchange them with 10 other cookie makers and come home with 10 - 1/2 dozen different types of cookies. It's a lot of fun and I only have to make one type of cookie.

Sooo... last night was my first date in oh, 30 years!  It was a dud. He was a nice man but we had no connection at all!  Honestly, it wasn't worth the time I spent on my make-up and now I can scratch it off my to-do list.  I kept thinking, how long before I can go home and put on my pj's and paint my nails? I don't think this is going to be very fun but I am convinced there is cowboy out there for me someplace. I will have to kiss a lot of frogs and all that....

Tonight is my work Christmas party. A bunch of doctors standing around talking about their recent cases and a bunch of support staff checking the clock to see if they can leave yet.  It's an interesting dynamic where I work. We have two clinics and the staff in each clinic never work with each other, only the doctors. They don't really know each other.  Then there is me, the only clerical support for the entire department. I am kind of the odd man out.  Oh well, we have good food and plenty of alcohol!

 If you didn't know already from Facebook, I have a new tattoo. I will post a pic after it heals. I had a tattoo on my ankle that I never liked and I wanted a new one to honor the Bobster so I have a champagne bottle with grapes around it covering the old tattoo. It's FREAKING big. Actually way bigger than I thought but I like it and it's a great conversation starter! :D

Have safe weekend and get out there and support our economy like I am by Christmas shopping!

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Getting my feet wet.

Ten Things You Shouldn't Say on a Date.

1. You're wearing that?

2. Something smells funny.

3. Where's the Tylenol?

4. And to think, I first wanted to date your brother.

5. I have a confession to make…

6. My dad has a suit just like that.

7. That man is hot. Look at him.

8. My ex, may he rot in hell forever…

9. You're going to order that? Seriously?

10. You're how old?”

― Gena Showalter, Animal Instincts

A friend of a friend asked me out for coffee. When I consider the fact that I haven't dated in over 30 years I get a bit shaky!  Dating at 50 something is going to be a lot different than 20 something. I am no longer that tall skinny girl with the long blonde hair. I don't even remember what my natural hair color looks like! Plus there is the fun of wrinkles and age spots and balding and that's just the men!  I was discussing all of this with my cousin and she and I agree, looking around at men our age it seems like they are all OLD and of course we are not!  Wish me luck. I think it's gonna be a bumpy ride!

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Gratitude is the inward feeling of kindness received. Thankfulness is the natural impulse to express that feeling. Thanksgiving is the following of that impulse.

Henry Van Dyke

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Back from vacation

I had a wonderful time in Seattle visiting Lola and Nolan and their parents. Lola is a very funny child. She talks and sings from the time her feet hit the floor in the morning until she passes out at night. Seriously, NON-STOP!  Nolan on the other hand is a little more quiet but you can see his brain working all day.  We would get up before everyone else and have breakfast and chat about zombies and Christmas and Skylanders.   I loved it.

David and I went to the Chihuly Glass Garden and Exhibit. It was totally worth the $20.  I posted pictures on my Facebook page. We had lunch at Ivar's, a famous fish place in downtown Seattle and then topped off our day with Krispy Kreme donuts. Ahhh.  It was really nice to spend the day with my baby brother.

Stefanie and I did a bit of shopping and got pedicures. She is getting to know her way around just like a native so this trip we were able to head out a bit farther for our excursions. All in all a fun trip. I can't wait to go back next summer.

In other news, a man from my neighborhood asked me out for coffee! First time in quite a few years that someone asked me out. I said no, but still....

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Look out Seattle here I come!

After one week of having Invisalign braces I am ready for this nonsense to be over with...and I have 7 1/2 months to go!  I can't eat with them in so I have to take them out, eat, brush everything and put them back in. It is making me very choosy of what I eat and when. I don't weigh myself but I feel  a little lighter this week.

I am heading to Seattle Saturday and praying my planes all run on time. We  have plans to go here -  The Chihuly Garden. The flowers in this post are all glass.  The Bellagio Hotel in Las Vegas has a Chihuly installation in their main lobby and it is exquisite. I think this one looks amazing and I can't wait to see it.

I am heading to my cousin Jill's for her annual Halloween party tonight. My neighborhood doesn't have kids so I like to go some place that does.  I feel sorry for the poor little critters. They may have to trick or treat in snow suits tonight!  Have a safe Halloween and stay warm!

Monday, October 22, 2012

Snap on braces

Today I got Invisalign braces. They are pretty much snap-on braces. The orthodontist gave me two sets. I wear one set for 2 weeks and then change them to the next set. When I go back to the orthodontist next month I will get three sets and start going back every 6 weeks. All the sets are  pre-made and just sitting in the box waiting for me. I will get new ones through June..only 8 months.

I wear them all the time except when I eat. I think this may be the weight loss solution I have been looking for since the damn things hurt to take off. They are very tight and my teeth ache when I put them on and take them off so I guess there goes the snacking at the desk all day!


Friday, October 19, 2012


Bet you thought this was going to be a political post!  Nope.  For the past year I have been thinking of getting a tattoo to honor my hubby.   I talked with the tattoo artist (who did a great tattoo for my brother and who re-colored mine) and we came up with a design I really like.  This is a very rough draft. It will look like a green champagne bottle (champagne, get it?) and not a fat beer bottle.

The problem is I want it on my forearm and to get any kind of nice detail Jeff would need make this about 4 inches. My arms are skinny. The tattoo takes up a lot of room. ARGH! I hate being indecisive!

Not much else is happening in ColleenWorld. I have to go to not one but two baby showers this weekend. One for my lovely niece, Becky and the other for my good friend Wilhelmine who is adopting and just got THE CALL!  Both very fun and exciting!

Oh in other news. I am getting Invisalign braces Monday but I am sure that will be another post.

Monday, October 8, 2012

It's been one hellava year!

It has been one year this week since Bob passed away and I can honestly say I am doing fine. I am moving on and all that but I thought this would be the perfect time to share our story.  I think this is probably going to be the last of the Bob posts. 

Bob and I met in 1976. I was working days at a department store and 3 nights a week as a cocktail waitress in a popular club. Bob’s friends were in a band and they played a few times at the club. He asked me out numerous times but I always turned him down. I was a pretty young 19 and he was a much older, in more ways than one, 29. I worked until 2:00 am and Bob started hanging around to walk me to my car. I still wouldn’t go out with him. Finally one of my friends who knew him told me he was a nice guy and would I please just go out on a date with the guy. Bob and I dated for 2 very intense years and then broke up. He thought I was too young to know what I wanted and he was right. We stayed in touch and stayed friends (most of the time) for the next 6 years. During that time he met a girl he was very much in love with and I met a boy I was very much in love with. There was some off and on drama over these years including Bob asking me to marry him twice and me asking him to marry me once.

In January of 1984 Bob was living in Dallas after just moving from Houston for work. I was living in Detroit after just moving from Ft. Lauderdale and breaking up with my boyfriend. Bob travelled to Detroit to visit his parents, we met up for dinner and Bob asked me to visit him in Dallas. So off I went to Dallas where after 8 years Bob decided I had grown up enough and I decided he had settled down enough and we decided to get married! I was 27 and he was 37. We were finally the same age!

The first 3 years after we got married we lived in Dallas. Bob was transferred to San Francisco for 6 years and then on to San Diego for about 2 before he was laid off and we moved back to Michigan and that, as they say, is  "a whole nother story".

A few things you may or may not know about Bob:

He was extremely sentimental. He played baseball in high school and was scouted by the majors. He played softball until he was in his 60’s. He was very popular in high school. His dad owned a gas station and Bob worked there when he was young. He could fix pretty much anything and knew more about cars than anyone I know. He loved Pink Floyd. He was in Vietnam. He joined the Army with his best friend before they got drafted so they could have a better selection of what kind of job they would get (he drove heavy trucks). He was stationed in Washington DC on riot duty after he came back from Vietnam (still shaking my head at that one). The night before we got married he had to talk me into going through with it. He gave up smoking to marry me and then used to sneak cigarettes (with my mother!) until I caught him and he gave them up for good. When he was young he wore glasses but he never knew why and then one day he just quit wearing them…and he didn’t need them! He was married for 4 years in his early 20’s. When he was in his late teens and early 20’s he and his buddies used to race cars all over the metro Detroit area, mostly on Woodward and Gratiot, and Bob used to make money doing it. He was shot in a bar fight.  Did I mention he loved baseball?

The hole in my heart will always ache but over this past year it has subsided some and I can look back on all of this with a smile instead of tears.  Thank you all for your love and support.

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Ah Fall!

Looks like summer grabbed her beach toys and left the party! It was a nice long hot and sticky one this year and I am glad to see the last of it.   I took this picture 2 years ago at the cider mill. It was the last time I went because Bob was too sick to go last year.  I am ready to go this year now I just have to find someone to go with! 

Big shout out to my brother John! When he came over last night to help me trim a tree I shanghaied him into taking me to Best Buy and then programming my new Universal Remote!  Now that the tree is trimmed up I can see the rest of the mess that needs to be cleaned up before it gets too cold. I can also see the big holes where the bushes I murdered used to be and I can really see a trip to the garden store this weekend!

There really isn't much else going on right now. I started cleaning out my mom's basement last week so my brother and I can rip out the carpet. She has a tiny basement and old musty carpet that needs to come up. 

Enjoy the weather!

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Oh, hello Tuesday!

  • I won a copy of "Riveted" by Meljean Brook a few weeks ago. I read it last week and I have to say I totally enjoyed this book.  It's the 3rd in her Iron Seas series and I think the best of the bunch. It is a great steampunk adventure with a wonderful romance.. or great steampunk romance with a wonderful adventure.  The characters were strong yet vulnerable. I cried!  I am not much of a reviewer so below is what RT Bookreview magazine said,

"In between the fantastic elements and fabulous action, Brook also weaves in themes of the dangers of prejudice and judgment. And when it comes to heroes, there’s no one more thoughtful or noble than David! A rip-roaring and wonderful addition to Brook’s amazing Iron Seas series.”

—RT BookReviews 4½! - Top Pick

  • In the past week I have been at the receiving end of this comment, not once, not twice but three times. "Colleen, I know a guy...." I guess my time as a single person has officially begun! UGH!  I haven't dated in 30 YEARS and I am not that excited about the prospect. The only thing that gives me hope is my closest friend didn't date for almost as long and in her first foray into on-line dating she immediately met her current boyfriend, a super nice guy, and they seem to be going strong. I may change the focus of my blog to dating after 50! Should be verrrrry interesting.

  • The house behind me finally sold, after being on the market for over 6-months, and someone cleaned up the entire yard. They dug out almost all of the old overgrown plants and trimmed back all the trees and bushes.  Sitting on my patio I noticed all of the weeds I thought were theirs...nope, mine, so I had to do some weeding and now I am anxious to get my yard cleaned up. I feel like I have been watering potted plants and tomatoes for months...hey, I guess I have. I am pretty tired of it and want to start pulling everything out.
Happy Tuesday!

Thursday, August 23, 2012

My Loot

I follow quite a few authors on Facebook and they all have contests when their latest books are close to being released. Usually I just have to post a comment on their website or something equally easy.  In the past year or less I have won 4 books and if you squint really hard you can see the little hamburger! The 4th book is in the mail, I won it last week and I am very excited to be getting a "pre-release" copy of a book by one of my favorite authors. I will blog about it after I read it.

The little silver hamburger charm is from "Running for Burgers". Author Julia London started a Facebook page separate from her author page for people interested in motivating each other to stay in shape, "Julia London's burger bar for readers who are fit and healthy and like to eat. You don't need to be a runner to earn your burger. All activities welcome!"

Every month she has an "I Kick Ass" contest so followers can post about their accomplishments for that month.  I won the hamburger charm for July for my little bit of motivation. I have been using my calendar and big fat red marker to keep track of when I do any kind of exercise;  walking, biking or the gym.  By visually tracking my progress I went from only working out 4 times in June to 15 times in yep, I KICK ASS and I get loot!

Thursday, August 9, 2012

August so far...

The heat finally lightened up a bit and I was able to get out on my bike last remember, Mickey?  We have a good time together but can only go about 3 miles around my neighborhood. I am surrounded by major roads that wouldn't be any fun to cross on a bike.  I am happy for the predicted 70's in the next few days as my yard is sadly in need of weeding and some clean up.

I spent the weekend at my niece's cottage.  This little princess was stuck to me like glue until her cousins made it up on Friday night.   We had a wonderful time on the lake. The water is very shallow and warm so it's great swimming.   There were 5 adults and 4 kids! Nice weekend.

Last but not least, my nephew, Jeff, graduated this week from Florida Atlantic University with an MBA!!! YAY Jeff!!! He is the first in our family to have a Master's but his brother Jon will have his in December. Amazing!

Wednesday, August 1, 2012


I haven't posted in ages! Not sure why other than nothing much is going on here in the middle of this sweaty and moist summer.  This is my cousin, Jackie. We are 3 years apart and pretty much grew up together. A couple of weekends ago we spent the day "antiquing" and ended up out on the lake boating and swimming. It was a great day.  She is very generous in sharing her wonderful hubby to help me around the house. I wanted to make sure I said THANKS!

I gave up on my garden. I have a crazy cucumber plant, one cherry tomato plant the the dog it snacking off of like her own personal salad bar and this purple tomato plant.  Doesn't taste very good, not like a fresh tomato should taste.  

Looks like I am heading up north this weekend. I haven't been since last summer and it will be a bit bitter sweet.  I am going to my niece's cottage where Bob used to like to run his model hydroplane boat. It never ran very well and they had to work on it every time. We used to tease him about it big time.  I am sure it will be a fun weekend. The company is great and kids are a hoot.

That's about it for now. What are you up to?

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

I am bored!

One of my young relatives (I am not naming names) who lives in a big city, just texted me to say "Auntie, I am bored". I suggested she explore her city as a tourist and also suggested things for her to do in her city based on what I know about  it and what I found on the Internet.  What do you tell your young adults to do when they are bored... besides get a job? ha ha

Now that the garage sale is over I find I have time on my hands.  Seems like we have had a long summer with all this heat but I haven't really done anything "summery".  I am going to the Plymouth Art in the Park art fair Saturday and taking my little great nieces to see Brave on Sunday. I think I would feel more like it is summer if I went swimming or to the beach.  The lake is about 10 miles from my house with a nice size state park and picnic area but it's not a sandy beach and the water is known to be yucky when it gets hot.  I may head over there anyway. I also think I need to plan a girl's weekend up north.  

I guess this will be a short post. I don't have much more to say this week. Very unusual..maybe I am sick :D

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Garage Sale Wrap-Up

I really shouldn't complain about the weather. It has been a great spring and early summer but damn! 90's? In June? We have had beautiful weather during the week and moist, hot and sticky on the weekends!  I don't want to exercise in this sauna and I am feeling overly large right now!  The only thing really growing in my garden is the tomatoes. I gave up on the rest already.

So, the garage sale.  I ended up having it last Thu., Fri, and Sat. Not all day, only until I couldn't take it anymore which was about 3:00. Strange strange people shop at garage sales in my neighborhood. Thursday it was in the 90's with high humidity and that is the day we did the most in sales.  Friday was steady and Saturday got a late start and we finished it all up by 2:00.  I thought I would sell about $500 worth of stuff and that would be a great weekend. I was totally giving most of it away. The grand total...insert drum roll.....  $1800.! I know! I about died! Lots of exclamations!! I sold most of what I had and only took one trunk full of left-overs to The Salvation Army.

Great big thanks to my mom, who was there for all 3 days. Also much thanks to Jeff Vandenbossche, and my brother John and sis-in-law Shelly.. tho I am pretty sure they don't read this.  Aunt Rosalie did a wonderful job feeding us and special big hugs to Nina for taking a day off work to pitch in.

I am pretty sure I will never do that again!

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Don't keep those platform shoes!

Life lesson!  Get rid of your junk!  I am cleaning and organizing in anticipation of the Great Sears Garage Sale. Every time I open a door, drawer or box in the basement I am amazed at the tools and all around STUFF that the hubby kept. In trying to figure out, a. what the tool is and b. how much it cost so I can price it, I am just now realizing the amount of money we spent at SEARS! Did  you know a 30 gallon compressor cost $300? Neither did I! I can't figure out how in world we got all of this. Maybe he snuck in that compound miter saw when I was at work but where did the 6in bench grinder come from? Just an FYI...there is no value in collecting wrenches and clamps! Don't get me started on the platform shoes!

If you want to see my junk, the garage sale is Thu - Sun, June 21 - 24. I can offer you lemonade and a place on my porch to watch the show!

Wednesday, June 6, 2012


I was going to post about books until I realized I haven't been reading that much. With the weather finally warming up I am outside quite a bit, especially on the weekends. Last weekend I went to a cute little 1st birthday party and then my favorite cousin came over and we dug up and replanted 10 bushes. By "we" I mean Jim did!  The front of my yard was starting to look over grown so I cut back 3 medium size bushes and Jim dug them up and moved them. He dug up 7 boxwoods and moved them around too. Looks much better. Now all I have to do is go get some new mulch.

The next few weekends will be spent on the garage and garage sale. My very helpful mother is coming this weekend and we will clean out the garage. Next Saturday I have a mini-crew helping with setting up and then the garage sale will be June 21-24. 

So, books.  I just finished the last book in Dana Stabenow's Kate Shugak series. 18 books in about 3 months! As I have posted before, this is a super great series and I highly recommend it. I started another series last week by Craig Johnson,  the Walt Longmire series. Coincidentally these books just became a TV series last Sunday. I read the first 2 and taped the show. I also just finished "Stolen Prey" the latest offering in the loooong running Lucas Davenport series by John Sandford; always a good read. Lastly I am reading "Tempest Rising" by Nicole Peeler. This one is for my on-line book club. I am part of a Facebook club for folks interested in paranormal and UF books.

If any of you want to stop over during the garage sale, you know where I live!

Monday, May 21, 2012

Busy Weekend!

I took Friday off to go shopping!  I have been looking for new chairs for my kitchen and after much searching and pricing I found something close to what I wanted at Cost Plus World Market. The only problem was the closest store is an hour away from my house!  I borrowed an SUV (thanks Aunt Rosalie), loaded up my mom and headed out. I forgot all the fun stuff Cost Plus has! I spent more than I had planned but had a great time doing it! 

I swore to myself that I would stay home and work on my yard this weekend and it was perfect weather!  I seeded bare spots, planted pots, a flower bed and lettuce, trimmed bushes, cleaned out beds in the front of the house and got a pedicure! :D  I am up at the butt crack of dawn on the weekends anyway so I headed out to Home Depot and beat all the other crazy yarders to get my mulch.  If you live in my area, Randazzo's on 13 Mile/Schoenherr has great prices and a nice selection of hanging baskets and porch pots.  I still have to put the mulch out, trim more bushes, level the water fountain, split hostas, buy and plant tomatoes and figure out what I am going to plant in a 6 foot long bare spot I created (Aunt Diane?).  My back yard is tiny but has just enough room to keep me puttering for the summer.  After all this I am starting on the garage sale!

Now that it is warm out the time seems to fly. I am trying to slow down to enjoy it a bit ..but see above!

Have a Happy Memorial Day weekend!

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

I bought a bike!

Isnt' she the cutest thing?  Her name is Mickey and I giggled like a little kid riding her this weekend. I think it was the streamers blowing in the wind!  She is an Electra Townie. They have some really cute bikes but I liked this one. I added the basket, bell and streamers and off we went!

So this week's post is pretty random since I haven't posted anything in a few weeks.  My trip to Key West was wonderful. The weather was perfect with only one day of rain. We snorkeled on a Rum and Reggae sunset cruise, spent time on the beach and did a "Pub Crawl".  It was a hoot. This funny guy walked about 20 of us around to 5 different bars in downtown Key West and we all had drinks and then off to the next bar!  I think the crawl part described what we did the next morning getting out of bed!

I spent most of the weekend in the yard cleaning up and getting my raised beds ready for veggies.  I have two 4x8 beds but I don't think I am going to use both of them this year. I may only plant a couple tomatoes, peppers and lettuce and then fill the other bed with cutting flowers.  The grass in the back yard looks pretty crappy so I am going to fill it in with some seed.  I also have to clean out the bed in front of my arborvitae wall and plant something in there that I don't have to take care of.  I need to replace a few pavers in the walkway that goes from my patio to the side of the house and I am thinking of getting rid of a few bushes in the front. Whew, that is more work than I thought I was doing...

The big garage sale will be June 22.  I need tables. If you have a long table that you can let me use for a few weeks please send me a message on Facebook.  It will take me a couple weekends to set this mess up and I will be looking for help. :D

I spent the entire weekend shredding papers!  Bob was his mom's conservator for the years she was in a nursing home and the amount of paper that generated was staggering.  Bob also had a bunch of paper, mostly medical. I really didn't realize how much until I started shredding.   I put the shredder in the living room and used it during every commercial for 3 days.  I threw out 10 tall kitchen garbage bags of shredding in Monday!!!

Happy Mother's Day to all!

Monday, April 16, 2012

It's finally here!

I am heading down to Key West with my sister, 2 cousins, cousin-in-law and Aunt. My cousin's daughter and her friend will be meeting up with us for a long weekend. They planned this trip in January so it has been a long time to wait! My big plan is to lie (lay?) by the pool drinking fluffy drinks and ogling the cabana boys! Big thanks to my mom for staying at my house! Ciao!

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

What I learned in the past 6-months!

It's been six months since my darling husband died. In some ways it has flown and others it has dragged. I am doing fine, really, but moving on is a tough thing. This is what I have learned in the past 6 months.

I have learned that I don't like living alone because there is no one to talk to and as we all know, I am a talker! I have never lived alone.

I don't like having to take care of every damn thing in the house either. Laundry, yard work, cleaning, dishes it's all too much. Bob and I split the chores pretty evenly and now to have to do it all sucks.

I also don't like having to call on others to help but this is a sticky wicket because everyone wants to do something, anything, to help. A GREAT BIG thanks to my brother Bobby for changing out my bathroom faucet on his lunch hour! My brother David for securing my back door and garage and my brother John for getting my sprinkler system up and running for the season, fixing my leaking faucet outside and helping to put my headboard on my bed frame. Another big thanks to my favorite cousin Jim for spray paint help and getting the ugly old treadmill out of my basement and most importantly for getting the grill out! A very special thank you to my mom from her favorite granddogger for all the dog sitting.

I have learned that duct tape fixes just about anything and who to call if it doesn't.

I have learned that I have too much crap and this is important, get rid of all your crap! Bob kept EVERYTHING! I have an entire Sears Hardware store in my basement. It is going to take me about 3 weekends to organize a garage sale and get rid of all of this stuff. Anyone know how much a used grinder goes for? I have been cleaning, tossing and giving away stuff for months and I don't see a light at the end of the tunnel yet. Honest to god I found his uniform from Vietnam that I didn't even know he had and 2 pair of platform shoes from the 70's, his, not mine!

I have learned that I am stronger than I thought I was. I miss him every single day but it no longer feels like someone scooped out my heart with a teaspoon. I can't say I am excited for the future but I can now see a future.

Friday, March 30, 2012

My aching face!

I had a laser treatment this week on my face. Since my skin is so fair I have had a ton of sun damage... you know there was no such thing as SPF 30 when I was a kid..anyway, sun damage caused broken capillaries especially around my nose. V-Beam laser was designed to treat these and lucky me, they have this laser at work! I had the treatment Wednesday and ended up with a slightly puffy face afterwards. When I woke up Thursday I looked like a chipmunk! My face is swollen, especially around my cheeks!

I started this post Friday and thought I was going to finish it that night but here it is Monday and I am just getting back to it. My cheeks have gone down but they are still a bit puffy. I hope it all goes away by Easter!

I am on week 3 of Weight Watchers. The first week I thought I only lost 1 pound but I weighed in later and it was 2. This week I am down 1.5 lbs. Only 11 more to go but at this rate it will be July before I get there. WW is a TON of work. I think about food all day! I do ok with meals but it's the snacks that I am having a hard time with. I like salty crunchy but I am getting pretty sick of popcorn. My other issue is I don't eat "diet"anything. I have never had a diet soda. When Bob had his heart surgery we cut back on processed foods and I still have a hard time buying anything in a can. A lot of the foods that are low in points are processed. Everyone tells me it will get easier. I sure hope so because before you know it, I will have long ears and a tail! Speaking of ... have a Happy Easter!

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

I finally did it!

I joined Weight Watchers! Ok, stop it. I know I am not fat but I gained about 4 lbs since Bob died and add that to the extra I was already carrying, I am uncomfortable and my pants don't snap. The more Bob was in the hospital the less I cooked. It was much easier to pick something up. Since I don't eat hamburgers or french fries I thought I was doing ok. After he died I pretty much quit cooking. Again, easier to run to Nino's and get prepared foods to heat up and salads at Panera Bread. I need to get back on track and eating a bit more healthy.

I have never dieted in my life. I haven't had to ever watch what I eat. I am 5'7" and in my 30's I weighed about 135, in my 40's 145. I am in my 50's so you can see where this it heading... I have a goal and when I reach that goal I am buying myself an iPad. Of course the iPad 4 may be out by then but it's still a goal.

So, Weight Watchers is a lot of work! I think about what I am going to eat ALL DAY! I have to log my points and check my points for every freaking thing I put in my mouth. I am told it will get easier once I have my frequent foods logged and I get used to the point thing. I figure the secret it fiber. That and water keep me running all day :D

I am still plowing through the Dana Stabenow series. I can't begin to tell you how much I enjoy these books. I am on the 14th in the series and I started the 1st February 13. Can you tell I don't watch TV? 14 books in about 6 weeks! That's a lot even for me.

Friday, March 16, 2012

Time change blah...

I don't know about you but I am tired! This time change thing just wears me out and takes about a week for me to get adjusted. My body thinks it is still 4:30 am when I get up at 5:30! Not my favorite time of year.

So, I am joining Weight Watchers on-line program. I have a 10lb goal and I am just too damn lazy to do anything about it. My brother and 2 sisters in law participate in WW and see great results. My boss lost 30 lbs (but she eats carrots all day) and another person at work lost about 50. Since the hubby pasted away I haven't really been cooking. It is easier for me to just grab something to go and as you know, to-go usually means junk! I am hoping that with a little of the discipline I have been laking I will meet my goal soon.

I started the Pilates class and promptly dropped out! I went to two. The class was advertised for mixed levels but ended up being for advanced level students and the instructor wasn't that great and making sure the classed worked for beginning and intermediate too. The good news is, I just found out you can get exercise classes On Demand! Comcast has a bunch of free classes so I am going to try out a few this weekend. The other good news is I can now walk outside. Gracie the Wonder Dog loves the mile long walks we have been taking all week!

Oh and I am still stuck on the Dana Stabenow books!! Oh my god she killed someone off and I about died! I am on the 11th book and have 8 more to go. Seriously, I can't read anything else. I just have to know what happens next!

Enjoy your weekend!

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Just what I needed!

I lay on the table in a warm dark room. He wraps me in warm blankets and tucks pillows under my knees and arms. The music is low and some kind of natural chirping birds and gurgling streams. He always thanks me for remembering him, in his heavy Chinese accent, and then sticks needles in my face, head, neck, arms and legs! In the winter, I get acupuncture for my sinuses and lately for my back too. The first time I went I asked him, "what if I don't believe in acupuncture". He told me "that's ok, it works anyway". He was right. This time of year my sinuses protest, loudly and painfully! I wake up with a headache in the middle of my face and can feel the gunk draining as I sit up. Don't know how it works but my head feels better after only one session. After a couple I am back to normal. Hey don't laugh, I can do normal if I really try!

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Random Wednesday

  • He was my very first crush! I used to know all the words to all the Monkee's songs and I am sure I drove my mother crazy singing them. I never missed a show! I am deeply saddened by his death. RIP Davy Jones and thanks for the memories!

  • I am plowing through the Kate Shugak mysteries by Dana Stabenow. I just finished the 5th one, Play with Fire. "A rainy gust of wind tore over the rise, swooped across the road and tossed up the leaves of a stand of birches, exposing their lighter undersides. A lusty laugh and the gust was gone and with a scandalized rustle the birches shook their skirts back down over their white boles, and all was still again, except for the patter of returning rain." This is the kind of writing that just reels me in and keeps me reading and reading,which I guess is a good thing because there are 19 books so far in the series. If you don't hear from me by April or May send in reinforcements!

  • Sigh.. I went bathing suit shopping this past weekend. It was a sad and miserable event but after much torture I selected a cute tankini and skirt bottom from Land's End. Freaking thing cost $120 but I guess it will be worth it. I am heading to Key West in April with my 2 girl cousins, my cousin-in-law, my aunt and sister. We are staying at the Doubletree Hilton Grand Key Resort for 7 nights. I see mucho margarita's in my future!

  • I am considering working on a family tree and looking for suggestions and helpful hints.

  • Monday was my first Pilates class in,well, in ages. I still work out with my trainer but I need something to mix it up. The jury is still out on whether or not it is going to help with my back issues but it was mini-intense.

  • Last but not least I gave up Starbucks, AGAIN! Non-religious person that I am, I gave it up for Lent! The caffeine was making my heart go pitty patty and not in a good way plus I was back up to $15-20 a week. So Starbucks short soy no water chai and cranberry orange scones got booted to the curb. It was my crack and I think about it every morning... is there a rehab for this?

Monday, February 20, 2012

Book blog 2 - Alaska on my mind!

The picture has nothing to do with books. I just love it and wanted to share. My little sweetheart heading to ballet class.

So, here I am again sharing the books I have been reading since my last book blog. These are mostly mysteries but I did get in a little romance.

Firelight- Kristen Callihan. This is a dark, Gothic-style historical. The mystery isn't resolved until the end but the love story was pretty hot.

From Amazon -- "London, 1881 Once the flames are ignited . . . Miranda Ellis is a woman tormented. Plagued since birth by a strange and powerful gift, she has spent her entire life struggling to control her exceptional abilities. Yet one innocent but irreversible mistake has left her family's fortune decimated and forced her to wed London's most nefarious nobleman.They will burn for eternity . . . Lord Benjamin Archer is no ordinary man. Doomed to hide his disfigured face behind masks, Archer knows it's selfish to take Miranda as his bride. Yet he can't help being drawn to the flame-haired beauty whose touch sparks a passion he hasn't felt in a lifetime. When Archer is accused of a series of gruesome murders, he gives in to the beastly nature he has fought so hard to hide from the world. But the curse that haunts him cannot be denied. Now, to save his soul, Miranda will enter a world of dark magic and darker intrigue. For only she can see the man hiding behind the mask".

Secrets of the Lost Summer - Carla Neggars. I wasn't sure I was going to finish this one. It is a contemporary romance with a little mystery tossed in. I liked the story but it just didn't seem to move fast enough or have enough heat. It did finally draw me in though. I guess I would classify it as "sweet".

"A wave of hope carries Olivia Frost back to her small New England hometown nestled in the beautiful Swift River Valley. She's transforming a historic home into an idyllic getaway. Picturesque and perfect, if only the absentee owner will fix up the eyesore next door.…Dylan McCaffrey's ramshackle house is an inheritance he never counted on. It also holds the key to a generations-old lost treasure he can't resist…any more than he can resist his new neighbor. Against this breathtaking landscape, Dylan and Olivia pursue long-buried secrets and discover a mystery wrapped in a love story…past and present".

Now for the nitty gritty of what I have been reading: The Kate Shugak series by Dana Stabenow. "Kate Shugak is an Aleut who lives on a 160-acre homestead in a generic national Park in Alaska. Her roommate is a half-wolf, half-husky dog named Mutt. Her nearest neighbors are a bull moose and a grizzly sow. Farther off are dog mushers, miners, hunters, trappers, fishermen, bush pilots, pipeline workers, Park rats and Park rangers, other Aleuts, Athabascans, a few Tlingits and the residents of Niniltna, a village perched on the edge of the Kanuyaq River, a 600-mile long, salmon-rich tributary that winds through the Park to Prince William Sound." (From

I am now on book 5 of this up to now, 19 book series. I like starting at the beginning and working my way through a series so I get to know the characters as they grow. The mysteries have been good and the writing superb. "The sky was of that crystal clarity that comes only to the lands of the far north in winter; light, translucent, wanting cloud and color." By the 4th book I had to print a map of Alaska so I could picture all the places that have been described so wonderfully in the books. The first in this series is A Cold-Blooded Business and you can get it for only $4.99 on Kindle.

What are you reading?

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Pizza and Neighbors

This was going to be a book blog. I read Robert Crais' new book "Taken" , Michael Connelly's new one "The Drop" and the new Stephanie Plum book Janet Evanovich, "Explosive Eighteen" and I wanted to tell you about them. This was all before my neighbor brought over more pizza!

If you haven't been following me on Facebook let me give you a little background. The section of my city that I live in has been known as "Little Italy" for many years. It is a multi-block area that was developed by a bunch of Italian people who all moved from Italy to Detroit and then all built houses in the same neighborhood back in the 60's. My neighbor grew up across the street and eventually bought the house next door to me. She is a school teacher and he owned a pizzeria. He now sells pizza spices and homemade dough to boutique grocery stores.

Starting the week after Bob died they have been bringing me pizza. EVERY WEEK! It started with an innocent phone call, "Hi it's your neighbor. It's pizza night so call me when you get home and I will bring some over!" Every week! I don't like pizza very much! I think I may have to move! I tried telling her I already ate. She said, great, you will have dinner for tomorrow. I tried nicely telling her, "you really don't have to do this". She rubs my arm and very sincerely says, "It's my pleasure". What do you say to that? I was thrilled when they went on vacation.

I guess I will post next week about the books.

Thursday, January 19, 2012


I am on vacation in Seattle. The same Seattle that has record snow and an ice storm. A state of emergency has just been declared because the entire city and surrounding areas are covered in inches of snow and topped with about a 1/2 inch of ice. Those of you from northern climes know that this means no one is getting out. They actually are asking everyone to stay home. Seattle is all hills. Cars and buses can't really get around and tend to slide, a lot, downhill.

Believe it or not this has been a very relaxing vacation. My sis-in-law Stefanie and I had grand plans for this week.. shopping, walking to Starbucks for breakfast coffee, taking the bus downtown more shopping. All the girl stuff she has missed since moving here. The weather and school closing has made that pretty much impossible but I find that this really isn't bad news. I have been running non-stop for 3 months and this forced relaxation is just what I needed. At home I would have too much to do to just lay on the couch and read. Plus there is the loving factor. Lola and Nolan have been giving me tons o' love!! I get hugs and kisses all day. I get to play princess and read chapter books..ahhh.

It may not be the vacation I planned but I really think it's the vacation I needed. Of course heading to the Keys in April won't hurt!

Stay warm!!

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

The book blog

In the past couple of weeks I have been asked for reading suggestions about 4 times. I am posting my "starter" list below. These are mostly mysteries and all in series so if you like them you can continue the series. (I have to figure out the picture thing).

1. I recommend the "In Death" series by JD Robb (who is Nora Roberts) to pretty much everyone who asks me about books. The first one is "Naked in Death". Eve Dallas is a cop in the near future. There is romance and mystery and a great on-going story line about all of the main characters. I smile, I cry. I have been hooked on these books since they started in the 90's. There are over 20 books in this series so it gives you something to read for a very long time.

2. The "Prey" series by John Sandford. The first one is "Rules of Prey". They are all good, fast reads and another long time series with the main character a cop named Lucas Davenport. What I like about this series is frequently you know "who done it" but Davenport doesn't so it's interesting to see how he is going to figure it all out. These are must buys for me, my mom and my sister.

3. Michal Connelly - hey I am on a cop roll here! The first book in his series is "Black Echo". These are more intense and suspenseful murder mysteries starring Harry Bosch. He also wrote the "Lincoln Lawyer" and few others with the same character, Mickey Hailer, that are tied-in to the Harry Bosch books.

4. Robert Crais - Start with "Monkey Business". His main characters are Elvis Cole and Joe Pike. Elvis Cole is a private detective and Joe is his go-to muscle and best friend. Joe eventually gets his own books.

If you are looking for something lighter and funny you should try "One for the Money" by Janet Evanovich. LAUGH OUT LOUD funny. I cannot tell you how much joy I get out of this series. My mom and I read parts of these books to each other on the phone because we just crack up. I have been known to embarrass myself in airports with these books *snort*. I am sure you have seen the ads for the upcoming movie.

So, if you are interested in contemporary or historical romance or Urban Fantasy let me know and I will send you a list of books I have read and enjoyed lately.