Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Robert Downey Jr, Chest hair and CGI

Since this is movie going season for many, let me tell you about the new Sherlock Holmes movie.
 I think Robert D. is a cute guy. I like his dark looks, his big, brown eyes . Remember back in the 80's when he was in the "brat pack", that group of young actors in all the John Hughes-type movies? Then he got into drugs, disappeared for a long time, and suddenly seemingly out of nowhere, came back as an action hero, (Robert Downey...an action hero?) in Iron Man and was again a wildly popular, a big star...how does that happen? I sometimes wonder if stars like him, with miraculous come-backs, sell their souls to the devil. Anyway...
Robert Downey Jr, a heavily bearded guy with thick, dark eyebrows, appears shirtless in his new movie, Sherlock Holmes Game of Shadows, and has nary ONE hair on his chest! I found it very disconcerting and thought he was "creepily" smooth, kind of  "Edward, white, sparkly, smooth-skinned". Don't be fooled be the images on google, those "lightly-haired chest shots" were from the last movie, Sherlock Holmes. No, in the latest S.H. he is hairless.
And the movie was boring  I probably dozed through half of it, only waking when the next rattling,  explosion rang through the theater. 
So many movies now, with all their cgi (computer generated imaging) abilities rely, I think, too much on the shock and awe of the close-up shot of a bullet flying slo-mo through 7 different trees in a snowy forest, filled with realistic unicorns racing toward a realistic, yet fantastically other-wordly castle sat high on a craggy peak with, again, realistic yet fantastical see-through dragons gliding overhead as far off off planets rotate in a starry sky. Whew!  And the death defying feats, hanging from a speeding train by one pinky as it speeds around a hairpin curve next to a ravine filled with ravenous crocodiles...come on! While I realize you have to suspend belief, those scenes can't carry a whole movie. At least not to hold my interest. Acton films just do not hold my interest for long.
But if you like action films, CGI, Robert Downey Jr, or you just need a nap, go see it!

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

I'm done!

 It was a sunny day today!! After two weeks of smoggy, freezing, overcast skies it was a beautiful sight!

Shopping done!
Wrapping done!
Stocking stuffers bought!

Neighbor gifts, Cranberry/blue cheese- cheese balls, prepared to be delivered!
I've never, in many years, been so ahead of the Christmas game!

Groceries bought!
This humble little trio, a mom on piano and her sweet little children on their violin and cello, provided Christmas music to shop by. I was teary eyed as I pushed my cart through the aisles as their innocent, slightly squeeky but beautifully honest notes wafted down the aisles. It was just so sweet and true! It touched my heart with a grateful spirit.

All I need are some Bingo gifts and a unisex "big" gift. And tomatoes. And peppermint ice-cream. And something to take around to the young, single women from church that I visit. And flowers from Costco... Gee, I guess I spoke too soon.

Oh well, I still feel pret-ty, prett-y good about my preparations! That's what Larry David always says "Pret-ty, pret-ty good" Anybody out there watch Curb Your Enthusiasm?   Funny show, but get the edited version, otherwise you'll hear a lot of the "bomb". On another T.V. note, I watched Downton Abbey for the first time! Loved it! I must dvr the new season starting in January!

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Excuses, Excuses....

I know I haven't posted in a long time.

I haven't died.
I haven't lost my fingers in a horrible industrial accident.
I haven't run off to join the circus. (although I've been tempted)
I haven't been placed into the Witness Protection Program.
I haven't started working on a PHD. (I'd have to get a Masters first)

So, what's my excuse?

I'm just kind of losing interest, that, and I'm lazy.
I'm not a blogger that likes to check in often, just kind of sharing my day to day antics. NOT that there's anything wrong with that! (I sound like Seinfeld!) Really, I love reading the blogs of those gals who do share their day-to-day, it's just not me. I usually have to have some topic that I need to blab about. And often, when I think of the effort it's going to take to organize my thoughts and TYPE it up, I just think, "ugh, do I really want to share it that bad?"

I'm a horrible typist. I can't sit down and ra ta tat some entertaining or thoughtful piece in a quarter of an hour! I know that if I practiced, practiced, practiced I'd would become faster, but I don't wanna! I practiced, practiced, practiced when I was thinking of a job change last Spring and I got up to a swift 37 wpm. I know, I know, stop laughing!

So, I'm really thinking of
a. giving it up
b. trying to write a small day-to-day antic every week...I guess that would actually be a week-to-week antic.
c. practicing typing WHILE writing the blog more often.
d. hiring a personal scribe.

We'll see. In the meantime, check back from time to time. Just don't worry if I disappear now and then like an old tom cat.


Monday, November 21, 2011

Mother and Child

Amanda, of Baseball and Cocoapuffs, posted this pic, along with the story of her son's birth.

I have to tell you how much I appreciate this picture!

I am so tired of "fashion photo-shoot" birth pictures. I've noticed recently that many brand-new moms present a picture of dewy freshness immediately after giving birth, lying artfully arranged in a peignoir on the hospital bed, with perfectly styled hair and make-up, looking dewy fresh.
Whatever happened to a beautiful, wrung-out, happy, emotional, newly delivered mom?

Now let me also say, that if your thing is to look like a newly delivered Angelina Jolie on the cover of People Magazine, more power to you. It's just not my taste.

Maybe, because I always looked like a bloated refugee from a horrible natural disaster, holding a baby close while dressed in the standard hospital gown that came in light blue boxer underwear pattern or gray boxer underwear pattern, I am jealous.
That may be, but there is something so emotionally honest in the beautifully haggard new mom pics that touches my heart and sets my tears to start, that I don't find in the staged pictures.

So kudos to you Amanda, and your lovely, honest "Madonna and Child"!

Friday, November 11, 2011


I'm sorry blog.
I have been unfaithful.
I have neglected you because I have found something that doesn't require as much thought to express myself.
Every day when I get home from school I check out the latest entries and I let the comments flow.
Oh believe me, I always have something to say!
In 20 words or less I can given my opinion, be a smart-ass or an inspiration, crack people up or at least cause a chuckle and in doing so I don't even  have to think of a title!
No one has to "leave a comment", something that proves difficult for some readers, simply hit LIKE and I know "you love me, you really love me".
It's so easy and shallow and now that school is back in session and I am working with 40 kids per day, I desire to play in the shallow end of the writing pool. I'm tired and brain dead when I finally have a minute to write.

So forgive me my infrequent posts, my 6 faithful readers... and watch for comments and likes on your F-book posts.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Reading Between the Lines

The following is an email exchange between my daughter and me.
"Are you at court today? How are you? I am in such a bad mood, dad started it off this morning talking abt. "yeah, just think, only so many days of daylight savings left. I cant wait!"  I have told him a hundred times, I hate when daylight savings ends. I dont care if it's light in the MORNING! I'd rather have it light at night! So I finally asked him if he really didn't know how I felt abt.it and if he did, how come he had to keep rubbing my nose in it when I've TOLD him a million time I dont WANT TO HEAR it!  It just bugged me! I wouldnt keep reminding him about something that   was going to happen that he didn't want to happen. Im sure he just thought, "wow SHE"S in a bad mood" but I wasn't til he started in. AND he didnt leave any light on for me downstairs, he comes up after his breakfast and shuts everything off. THAT bugs me, it's pitch dark, leave a light on for me.  arghhhhhhh! guess i am in a bad mood hahaha   ugh! well, hope you are having a good day and are in a good mood! : )  love you, mom

I was at court this morning. It was okay- I wasn’t there that long. There’s a door man/bailiff that thinks he’s the shiznit (creepy middle age guy) and he is always discriminating against women. “Take off your shoes” “Put that in the bin” etc etc when he doesn’t make the MEN take off their shoes. He’s an ass. Kirk has complained to the court about him before b/c of the way he acts and he changed for a little bit, but he’s getting back into old habits.
I’ve been moody the past couple of days. I’m trying to stay positive, but it’s hard! I also hate…no loathe, when daylight savings ends. Seriously, I get really depressed. I might go tanning once a week, as I heard that helps. But I don’t want to get burnt…hmm…it just sucks. That is rude of dad- I HATE when people don’t leave a light on. Dad just doesn’t think or consider other peoples thoughts/feelings. He just seriously doesn’t get it.  I sorry. Let’s do fun things this winter! I hope your day gets better! We’re ordering lunch today from Village Baker b/c of a birthday. I got egg salad (no bread) and a spinach salad. Sounded good!
Talk to you soon- Love you!!! shan

So many things said here. 
We are both dieting, low carb. Mmmm egg salad and spinach salad! Yum! My choices today were "grilled cheese" (only in the loosest sense of what a good grilled cheese sandwich is) mini-corndogs, frozen burrito. We no longer have a daily salad bar for teachers, only on Wed. and Fri. So it was an apple for me. My weight has steadily been climbing since school started and I've got to get back on the stick...celery stick!
We both are "seasonally affected". While I don't get really depressed, too badly, it is just so sad for me to see the days shorten. Then I remember, you just have to make it til Dec. 21st and the days lengthen once more!
I am trying to stay positive too. She actually ovulated this month and you cant help but get your hopes up.
He really doesn't get it.
I feel better already : )

Saturday, October 8, 2011

Wonderful Saturday

Wonderful Saturday, what made thee such a wonderful Saturday?

Was it because there was some sunshine peeking through the clouds, on a beautiful vista of snow capped mountains across the valley? Even with the temperature being 50 degrees, very un-like what we usually think early October should be, it was still a beautiful morning.

Was it the usual NPR Saturday line-up, which never fails to make me think and laugh? It always accompanies me on my journeys to the many exciting destinations of a Saturday morning, like the grocery store. It makes me sad to turn off the car in the middle of a great story and I admit spending way too much time sitting in the car, in the Smith's parking lot, listening til the end of "Wait, Wait, Don't Tell Me". I had a thought today, that maybe I could use my phone to listen with earphones to a podcast. Would people think I was crazy as I burst into laughter, or made some other seemingly inappropriate expression, as I walked the aisles with my cart? Probably.

Was it because we had a fun lunch date with friends, friends who "get us", who laugh at and with us? After lunch, we went over to the mall to buy Don some "excercise shorts" in his words, otherwise known as basketball shorts and a dress shirt. But when he talked about them he kept getting mixed up saying he had to "buy some dress shorts", so that was the running joke...yes, I know, we are easily amused and I guess you had to be there, but those are the kinds of silly things that cause friends to laugh, with and at each other, things that no one else would find funny. Our friend needed new jeans and there was much talk about changing sizes, styles, rises, washes.  We two wives decided he should get the kind endorsed by sexy Mike (Dirty Jobs) Rowe. Lee Jeans knows well, the demographic of  their customers.

Don and Barry left early for the BYU game. As soon as the door closed, I turned off the television, leaving me alone in the house with only the sound of the clock ticking. This is something that I love, but seldom get to enjoy.

And so I sit in the quiet, with only a few well chosen lamps burning softly and type

It was a wonderful Saturday.

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Going Back to Cali.

I often see friends and acquaintances reporting on a girl's weekend or girl's mini-vacay on facebook and blogs. They're usually enjoying some bff or sister time in Vegas, a cabin or on a cruise and I've always lamented that I'd never been on one. Well, this weekend my mom and her three girls went down to So. Cal for my uncle's funeral. Yes, for me to get a mini-vacay someone has to die.

My mom's younger brother passed away last week after a short fight with cancer, so my daughter Shannon, sister Cheryl and I drove down to Hurricane Utah to pick up my mom. After spending the night, we left the next morning for L.A., a trip of about 6 hours. I grew up in L.A. and dropping down Cajon Pass feels like entering the home stretch, almost there, the portal to my past. For all its traffic, graffiti, and SMOG, I still wouldn't mind living there IF I had enough (a lot of) money and the rest of my family were down there, too. Of course, that's easy to say when your just there for a short visit, staying in a darling little cabin home in Mountain Pass, on the road to Lake Arrowhead.

While there we visited the largest cemetery in the U.S. and tromped around several aptly named areas: Garden of Serenity, Garden of Tranquility, Garden of Eternal Rest, you get the idea, whilst looking for the grave-sites of our dearly departed. The kind, if stupid, employees of the largest cemetery in the U.S. drew elaborate directions on maps which proved to be more confusing than anything else. We finally found and photographed the headstones, with Shannon acting as our bird dog, more often than not finding the grave site before anyone else, then standing on the spot and waving her arms silently, so as not to wake the dead. As we spread out and walked the rows in a kind of search party formation, the cemetery security force cruised by a couple of times probably thinking we were one of those bands of bronze thieves, but upon asking if we could be helped, they realized we were just hapless illiterates, unable to read a cemetery map.

We wanted to go to someplace for dinner that held memories for us and settled on the North Woods Inn. The faux log lodge with snow-covered roof was always a special occasion destination. Inside stained glass lamps provided a dim, rosy light, the waiters sang Happy Birthday Barbershop style and while waiting for your reservation you drank Shirley Temples and ate peanuts throwing the shells on the floor! It was pretty much the same and we were all a little giddy that we had stepped back into a time-machine, reliving so many happy occasions.

Next morning, I woke up early and Shan came with me to make the trip into town to buy a Chinese Donut. Chinese donuts, imh, are the best donuts in the world. If you want a good donut, at least in So.Cal., find a little strip mall Chinese food place that makes and sells donuts in the morning. I'm not kidding!

Shan and me in the back row, sister Cheryl to my right. Mom right in front of me and my sister Tracy to mom's left. 
I'm not going to continue with the travel log, other than to say the funeral was a good funeral, the trip home long, the personality clashes few, but hey, we are four very strong personalities, mama didn't raise no shrinking violets. We have decided that this must happen again, this Baker Girl excursion! My mom just relished being with her girls and we all feel the same! We'll go back!

Monday, September 12, 2011

It's not your job to like me - it's mine.

I am a pleaser.

Over the decades of my life, I have become less a pleaser than I used to be, but I am a pleaser, just the same.
One of the problems with being an evolving pleaser is that now, when I find the gumption to do things my way or say what I think, I am often overcome with remorse.
"Why did I say that outloud?"
"What was I thinking!"
"What will they  think?"

I know lots of people that never waste a minute worrying in this way. They happily and unashamedly announce to the world their opinions, insights and arguments, never worrying about fallout.
Recently I was visited by a woman I didn't know well, someone who wanted to get to know me better. As we talked about "how I was doing" I recounted my experience with cancer, work, children and other things that woman talk about. Then she asked me a more personal question and before I answered, I thought to myself, "I'm going to be candid."

I  got the feeling that she was a little disconcerted at my "telling it like it is." Maybe surprised at what I had to say, she was very sympathetic but I thought I caught some alarm in her eyes.
Of course, immediately after opening-up, I regretted it. Now she knew my "secret", would it stay a secret? Would there be fall-out. (I realize you're probably wondering what in the heck I'm talking about, but I have to be a little circumspect here. )

On the one hand it felt good to be...I guess you could say, honest.  I know it didn't please her. It sent me into my usual speakers remorse and wondering what got into me. So, this evolving into a more honest yet tactful person is hard work, much easier just to say what people want to hear.
But I will keep at it, in a nice way.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Time for School

The other day I was bemoaning the fact that I had to start back to school August 16th. I realize I am lucky to even get "the summer" off, but that doesn't make it any easier to go back once those 9 weeks are over, especially if you spent 6 of them getting radiation. Waa, waa, waa. Yes, I DO want some whine with my cheese!

All that aside, it is time for school. There is no denying it. Summer is over.
I have noticed the angle of the shadows have changed, the quality of light is different then high Summer. It's dark earlier and the sun is rising later, nights are cooler.
So, complain all I want, the season speaks for itself. Fall equals school.

Summer is the time I build relationships, visiting people I don't get to see very often and going to lunch with friends and relatives.
It is about the only time I shop for fun.
It is the time I usually pursuit some creative activity and enjoy cultural events.
Summer is the time I am outside.

I need to find a way to fit these activities in during the working portion of the year, dinner instead of lunch, indoor concerts in the place of outdoors, quick weekend trips. Shop on my way home from school and don't wait til Saturday to clean and grocery shop. Yeah! that's it! I'll let you know how it goes.

In the meantime, I am at school. Next week will bring the students and after a week it will feel like I was never gone. I love my job!

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Summer of the Gamma Rays is Officially Done, Finito, Complete!

This morning I took my last daily 9 mile ride up State Street to the IMC Cancer Center for my last radiation treatment. For 6 weeks I made the trip, enjoying our beautiful, sometimes rainy finally hot, Utah Summer mornings. The usual soundtrack accompanying this roadtrip was some fine KRCL tunes or the companionship of Kerry, Bill and Gina.
In the mornings I felt energetic, glad to be up and busy at 8:00 a.m. Then as the day progressed, like a wind-up monkey beating his drum ever slower, I'd tire and slow down. That is, until the last 2 weeks. By then I wasn't quite as chipper in the morning and by the afternoon, I was in a tired fog. The skin under my breast and my armpit were burnt, purple, crack-y, yeah, it hurt. My wardrobe was adjusted to allow for maximum comfort and on the occasions when I felt like I had to wear a good bra to be presentable, I'm sure the people around me were wondering what I was doing fidgeting so much with my armpit. I didn't care.
My usual Radiology team: Carolann, Kimberley and Mark (here's where the tears start) were so sweet to me, so kind, friendly and professional. When you see people every day for 6 weeks, topless, a bond grows. I know they must see over 30 patients a day, but they still made me feel like I was important, not just another broken boob on a table. I know that, having rang the "finished bell", I will soon be replaced with another unfortunate soul with cancer. Odds are, from studying the demographics of my waiting roommates; a middle aged woman  much like me, or a 65+ man, will take my seat awaiting their turn to be cured by otherwise deadly radiation.

What can I take from this experience?

It is always best to put your happy face forward and act better than you feel, until a true friend comes along and knowingly let's you cry on their shoulder.
Everyone is fighting a hard battle, so be nice.
I really do eat when I'm tired and should be resting. Rest instead and don't let yourself feel useless.
and finally...
When you are traveling along life's highway, even to an unpleasant destination, enjoy the beauty along the way. Utah mornings are mighty pretty!

Thursday, August 4, 2011

My life doesn't look like this...

this picture is not from blog mentioned in post, only used as an example of photography type

The following quote is for reals.  Not my "reals", but someone else's "reals". Someone from Hackensack.

"These next two weeks are crazy! I'm scrambling to get all my work finished before we leave for a family beach vacation in the Outer Banks of North Carolina, then off to France and Switzerland (sans Henry!) at the end of August. Plus, a couple of my girlfriends from NY and I are renting a little beach house just north of San Francisco for three nights this coming week and I'm giddy with excitement for a girls getaway. Hoping a little R&R will rejuvenate me for the next couple weeks of work."

I happened upon this entry from some random blog, you know the kind, beautifully shot, overexposed photos of pretty people living fabulously carefree, stylish, happy lives. Oh, I guess I shouldn't say carefree, there are  times (documented in one of the above mentioned photos) when "Henry" eats all of the Williams Sonoma Parisian Macaroons that grandmommy sent or he gets a sunburn while at grandmommy's charming cottage on Balboa Island.

I do hope though, that she is "rejuvenated for the next couple weeks of work". I have no idea what her "work" entails and I have no plans to go back and find out.

Just interesting to get a glimpse of how others live...and I am in a pissy mood.

That being said, I have to wonder why this bothers me. Am I jealous? My life is pretty darn good, even though I'm not jetting off to France or having a girl's weekend at a beach house..hell, I've never even had a girl's weekend. Unless you count the time me and Bridgette went down to my folks in Hurricane. hahahaha
Coolio said in his song Gangster's Paradise,  "too much television watchin' got me chasin' dreams".
Is that what happens when we look at these blogs? Life is good, we're happy, but if we look too long, pretty soon we're dissatisfied,  jealous, cynical...chasin' dreams?

I don't know. For now I'll chalk it up to being in a pissy mood. And maybe I need to take more pictures in over-expose mode.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

I heart New York

I love being in the city, any city, so I loved the New York portion of our vacation.  We actually stayed in New Jersey and, each morning, walked half a block passing the neighborhood Catholic church and little mid-century houses to catch the bus into the city. Most of our fellow passengers, who sat reading, working on their laptops or dozing, were on their way into work. After going through the Lincoln tunnel, we got off at the Port Authority and a hop,skip and jump away, through teaming masses of people, we were in Time Square!

Some of my favorite New York things in no particular order...
I loved this! Talk about a "melting pot"! Right under the Statue of Liberty! This made me so happy and all patriotic!

Birds with french fries!  Yeah, they're happy.
Is this "New York" or what!?
Oh my gosh, the Architecture!

Oh my Gosh! The architecture with limousines!!

Crazy tourists

I want to go back!

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Contributing to the delinquency of a minor

I took my 18.75 yr. old son to a movie the other day. We both just wanted to see something funny, so after a Chinese lunch, we headed over to the theater to see a movie that looked good on the t.v.ads. I was expecting the somewhat raunchy type of comedy found in  HangoverI (which I thought was hilarious) and Couples Retreat. Yeah it's off-color, but I being the crass, uncouth person that I am, enjoy that once in a while. Don, on the other hand, does not appreciate anything "crude". So, I figured I would see it with Ty.

Let me tell you, it was very uncomfortable! I thought people must be looking at us, thinking "I can't believe she would bring her son to see this!" (they weren't). Granted, he is an adult and HE was laughing out-loud.  I felt HORRIBLE having taken Ty to see such a vulgar, crude, downright nasty movie. There was no nudity or sex, just the most vulgar, crude talk and situations.

I apologized to Tyler afterwards and he said that he knew I was going to say that.
"It's okay Mom, I liked it. Don't feel bad, I'm a big boy, now."
Yes, you are big and grown -up. And I still feel bad!

The radiation is going well. I will have a couple of exhausted days in a row, thinking "oh no! Here it is!" Then it goes away and I feel great! I think after the weekend, it kind of hits me harder on Mon. and Tues. But by Wed. I feel okay! As they ready me for the gamma-rays, they drape a small towel over my chest, then pull on the center to form a deep,"V" between my breast. The other day I commented that it reminded me of the deep, cowl necked  style of the early 80's, that is now back in vogue. That night I went to a concert with Shan and what was the lady next to us wearing?

Speaking of the concert, I love concerts! They are one of the joys of my life, occasions where I feel my authentic self, I know that sounds kind of silly, but it's true. The David Gray concert was wonderful, at Kingsbury Hall, great seats, lush sounds and creative staging, just wonderful!

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Vacation, Radiation

Wow, it's been almost a month since I last posted!
I loved New York and Nova Scotia! Hope to go back to NY now that I know what I want to see and kind of have an idea of how to get around. Taking the bus from New Jersey every morning worked out great and The Fails were very gracious hosts! Fun to spend some time with them and their little girls! On the flight to New York, Don was given a big bag of peanuts packets, don't ask me why. Anyway, when we got them I told Ty that I thought we should share them with everyone. His reply, a wry "Oh mom, always the Socialist", this delivered with a smile and a gentle pat on my shoulder. haha

Started Radiation, so far so good, only 5 days into it but I am optimistically anticipating just being "a little tired" Please, if you have been through radiation don't burst my bubble.

My first day, I emerged from the dressing room, my arms crossed in modesty, gown wrapped tightly around my boobs which were trying to enjoy their unfettered freedom by swaying freely. There were a few men in the waiting area and I thought to myself that "I wish they would make the men wait for patients in another area". The next day I saw the same men and realized I had, as usual, judged too quickly. They were patients themselves.

The actual radiation experience, at the risk of sounding irreverent, is a little...is "crucificatory" a word? When you lay upon the table, your feet are bound together, one over the other with a giant rubber-band to restrict your movement and your arms are raised above your head, hands crossed, gripping some bars. I'm sorry but the first time I assumed that position, a picture of some renaissance crucifixion illustration flashed through my head.

As the different screens/lenses/whatevers rotate over me, I am reminded of a microscope, the old fashioned kind. You had to turn the wheel of lenses for a closer look at the creature in the petri dish!
There is a backlit scene of blossoming trees and a cloud scattered blue sky above me, perpetually Spring. I have to admit that when the techs leave the room for their safety and I am alone with the machine and the cheery tableau above me, I sometimes fight a lump in my throat.

Last Thursday I had a cyst removed from my inner right eyelid... a torturous, horrific, awful experience. Came home with a huge, white patch and Don said he thought we should go out and get some dinner... "You've got to be kidding".

Next week more fun! It just gets better and better! Colonoscopy!! Stay tuned!

Tuesday, June 7, 2011


Hi friends!
I just haven't felt like writing...sorry.

Our New York/Canadian Cruise is coming up in just a week. I have travel anxiety.We will be gone for 11 days, tooo long for me. We had the sky miles to use, but in order to use them we had to make this convoluted plan because heaven forbid we pay CASH for a ticket!! Sky miles are soo hard to use! We are staying in New Jersey with Don's niece. There is a bus that stops on her corner and goes into the city with a 20 minute trip.  This worries me. Often, outings with Don are kind of like the Bataan Death March. He is able to go and go and I just can't tromp over New York from 9 - 9! Actually, Don and the boys went to Disneyland last week. They got there when the gates opened at 8 and got home at 11:30! I can't do that so... I worry. I just need to say "damnit I'm tired and we need to go back", right? Yeah...
We'll have two days before the cruise in N.J., then 5 day cruise to Nova Scotia, then two days after in N.J. I like a 5 day trip. I will keep you all posted.

I saw another doctor, a surgeon who specializes in breast and she thought radiation would work but wanted me to talk to the  radio-onc. The radio-onc, (whom I liked very much!) explained the Van Nuys scale to me and it's not about how cool and beach-y you are. The scale rates your age, cancer grade, area and margins and gives you a score. I scored 8-9.  10-12 would have called for a mastectomy. So I start radiation on the 27th of June, every morning at 8:15 for 6 weeks. I can hear many of you saying, "8:15!!" I chose the time, I'm an early riser. I was able to get my tattoos the same day and the c.t.scan. Now that I have 5 tats, I'm considering getting my tongue pierced.
The thing to remember is my cancer, dcis, is a very early cancer.

On a more fun note! I am going to at least two concerts this summer! Just got tickets to David Gray!! and K.D. Lang in August at Red Butte! I'd like to go to Death Cab For Cutie but am not wild about the venue. Maybe just buy the new album and listen to them out in the backyard on a pleasant summer night!
I could go on, but I won't. haha, there are times when I shouldn't write.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

The Follow-up to "Ouch"

Well, I'm sure all (3) of you have been on the edge of your seat, wondering what happened with the biopsy. As I told my parents, kids and friends: I didn't want to say anything until I knew what "exactly" to say.

When they call to report the results and ask if  "you have a minute",  it ain't good.
Long story short
Ductal Carcinoma in Situ or dcis.
He was very surprised
very early stage, but
found in both sites
may need mastectomy because of site distance
no lymph involvement with dcis

I saw the surgeon today. He feels good about a lumpectomy with five weeks of radiation treatments, to follow. I go in on Thursday morning, yes in 2 days! I'm glad! I need to be proactive and just want it over with.
If a mastectomy is needed because of lumpectomy results, I don't want reconstruction. I don't know how you feel about this, but my old gals have fulfilled their purpose. They were darling and did their job in helping me attract a  mate, they fed my babies and now, if needs be, I am happy to send them off into the sunset.

I shall call my 2011 vacation, Summer of the Gamma Rays.

Monday, April 25, 2011



I actually had an email I had sent today come back twice before I realized it was because of the message, "hello!" I realize now that the innocuous greeting is the tag for many a Viagra, Young Russian Ladies and other unsavory spam email. Who woulda thunk?

Last night I dreamed of tigers. Acting unafraid as I walked calmly by several tigers (they can smell fear, you know) I made my perilous way into the school...at night. Actually, I never really made it, not because I was attacked by a tiger, no, my ploy worked with them, rather it was one of those "lost, trying to get somewhere on time" dreams. You know the ones I'm talking about.

I don't think it takes Freud to figure this out: tigers dreams + lost dreams = anxiety.
Why was I so anxious, even if it was a sub-conscious anxiety? Double biopsy the next morning, this morning, 8:00a.m. sharp. (Oh! Don't use the word sharp!) I didn't think I was worried, but dreams don't lie.

I have "calcifications". Had them in the right, biopsied breast 6 years ago and now in the left. Saw them 6 months ago in the left, just got the new mammo and there they were, nothing changed. Good right? But the Dr. that read this mammo said he wanted to check them out. So, this morning I found my self with my left breast hanging through a hole, like I was ice-fishing with booby-bate. I just hope, with the metal markers now in both of the girls, I don't set off any alarms.

I am home watching a chick flik, with an ice pack and a bruised boob super-glued together in two places, waiting  48-72 hrs for the verdict.

And now I say


Monday, April 4, 2011

It's is officially Spr-inter!

Dad's 80th Surprise Birthday Party was a big success. Almost 100
friends, neighbors and family were there and he really was surprised!
My mom worked so hard putting this together.

Woke up to no power and 6" of snow April 2nd. It's Spr-inter in Utah!
I need only to look at this and feel all is right with the world!                                                                              

                            I could eat her up!

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Everyone needs to play hookie now and then!

I took a half-day today, when I realized we had 2 hours of special science presentations and I wouldn't have my usual small groups in the afternoon. Left at lunch to go downtown to Art and Soup, a fund-raiser for a Home Health Care organization. They bring together abt. 20 different artists and restaurants and you wander around perusing fine art and eating samples of soup, bread, pastries AND a free scoop of Ben and Jerry's ice-cream (Late Night Snack: a mixture of salty and sweet, mmm!)
Disappointingly, about half the soups offered were some sort of Tomato based soup, the best being a Tomato/Sherry soup, oh, it was good! My other favorite soup was a cream of plantain/green banana with a little dollop of mascarpone and watercress pesto and a little teaspoon of shredded crab, different and deelish! I don't often get to enjoy fine dining, so to experience the melding of exotic, unique flavors is a real treat for me!

All of the art I really loved was, of course, too expensive although I would dearly love to purchase some real art if I were to ever come into some money... I think I'll have to be satisfied with prints!

I finished Jane Eyre. I realized, shortly after starting it, that the Jane Eyre I had read when I was a pre-teen was the Reader's Digest Condensed version, quite different from the original! My mom bought me a subscription to the R.D.C. series. They were colorfully bound, simplified versions of the classics. I loved those books! They were a good introduction to literature. I still have them!
I appreciated the dictionary feature on the Kindle as I read it, this time! The language is very ornate and the sentences long! It felt good to do a little brain pilates! I liked the book as it made me think. I am not a "black and white" person and I had a hard time relating to many of the choices Jane felt she had to make. Also, I don't believe that Rochester's injuries were divine retribution or tutoring, - - - - happens. And why oh why didn't she bring little Adele home to live with them, especially after her own terrible childhood experiences! I wondered if perhaps Jane enjoyed the sense of power her care- giving, for the disabled Rochester, afforded her. She really had the upper hand in that situation.

I'm looking forward to seeing the movie, although I'll probably be disappointed in the casting choices as I have a pretty clear idea of what I think Jane and Mr. Rochester should look like. That's the trouble with movies based on books. Have you seen the casting for Water for Elephants?
The creepy vampire from Twilight! That's the best they could do! (Sorry to all you Twilight fans out there)

Monday, March 7, 2011

a few asides

                                    Check out Adele's new song, Rumor Has It!  Love it!

                                        Check out Mitt's new business casual style! I like it.

 Check out this Anthropologie infant skirt! No, it wasn't some Cold War Era, Romanian gypsy child's hand-me-down, someone actually paid cash money for it! When will the (IMO) Anthro-ugly craze end!

 She seems to me to be a worthy approximation of the highly tenacious Miss Eyre, notwithstanding the fripperies of accoutrement which display a destitution of sensible austerity. (thanks be to thesaurus, forgive me Charlotte)

 Now I will retire to my study and continue to read Jane Eyre, in preparation for the new movie version, while awaiting the required 4 comments from my 4 readers.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Apples to Oranges

I recently saw two of the movies that are up for Best Picture.

After seeing The Fighter and The King's Speech, my son asked me which I would choose for Best Picture. It is like comparing apples to oranges.

King's English (dang! I KEEP calling it that!) is a refined, leisurely walk through drizzly London with handsome, troubled royalty, namely, soulfully brown-eyed Colin Firth. I felt I was really visiting pre-World War II London with the terrific set design and costumes.

The Fighter is a bumpy ride through the bad side of Boston with the best body in Hollywood, darling Mark Wahlberg and his, spot on, early 90's costumed sisters. Oh! the hair and acid washed jeans! Christian Bale is fabulous as the crack-head brother. His personal transformation as Dicky, the ne'r do well boxer, is astounding! The family dynamics make for a good discussion on whether it's possible to escape one's family.

In both you are cheering for the underdog while being wildly entertained by the supporting cast. Kudos to the costume designer in both. The soundtracks are so well chosen, placing you right in the scene musically.

My personal favorite is The Fighter, but they are both deserving of best picture.

I've also seen:
True Grit- really liked it but, in my opinion, this remake of a movie I liked in the seventies just wasn't powerful enough to be Best Pic Oscar worthy.
The Kids are Allright- Again, imo, shouldn't have been nominated. Although Mark Rufello was pretty hot in it.
Toy Story 3- cute, touching, sweet, fun...but it has to make me think to be in the running.
Inception- Huh? Guess I'm too dumb or too old to get it.Great visuals!
.Social Network- Runner up to Fighter and King's... Maybe it just came out too early to be strongly in in my memory.
Haven't seen Black Swan.
Want to see Winter's Bone!
Let me know what you think!

Thursday, February 17, 2011


Hey Readers!
I have a favor to ask...
I am teaching Relief Society (my church's women's group) on Sunday. The subject is Service.
I'd like to use many anecdotes in my lesson and I thought it might be fun to have the perspective of some of my readers.
Think about these questions and reply if you'd like, by Saturday night, the19th of February.

 What has been the most meaningful service you have given to another?
 Was it an assignment or guided by the Spirit in an independent act? or a mix of both?

What is the most meaningful service you have received?

Any thoughts on the everyday service we render to family or in our jobs?

Thanks readers! I know it's short notice, but just had the brainstrom!

Friday, February 11, 2011

This is what happens....

when a stay-at home, semi-famous, mommy blogger wants to prove that she's just like us, messy house and all.

when a well known Home Decor blogger is  convinced she makes a mean slipcover.               
when Grandmother can afford allll the brow-lifts she desires.

when...just a minute, I have to go throw up!

As you can see, I've been entertaining myself with a wide variety of blogs. : )

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

I've got a "man cold"

It's an oldie but goodie. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mz6DktXFvg4
At the end, the E.M.T. sneeringly says, "Have you ever heard of Lemsip?" (a British cold remedy).

I really do have a man cold, coughing, nose flowing...not just running, disappearing voice... Missed one day of school and slept for about 18 hours straight. And now, there's a Whooping Cough warning and a cry goes out for teachers to get a booster!
I can tell you just when the enemy attacked. Sitting with a group, a girl sitting not a foot from me, suddenly "full-on" coughs right in my face. I wanted to yell, "Medic, Medic!! I'm hit!!" I knew then I was a goner... I will guess conservatively that 80% of our school teachers and students have had this bad virus. It started in November and I must admit I was feeling almost smug that it hadn't yet hit me...until the viral air invasion.
To Don's credit, he bought Kentucky Fried Chicken on Tuesday and Taco Bell tonight, so I didn't have to cook. Thanks honey!

The Latest Lexie Looks
                                        She's definitely got her daddy's brown eyes!

Catching little snippets of Terms of Endearment as I write. I love that movie! Jack Nicholson...gotta admire a guy that admits he is no longer irresistible to women.
"I can’t hit on women in public any more. I didn’t decide this; it just doesn’t feel right at my age." Kudos to you, Jack! I don't know...there's something about that sardonic lift of the eyebrow... just stick to your own age group.

Thursday, January 27, 2011

You've got mail!!

It was actually about the world's dirtiest hotels. hehehehe

Monday, January 17, 2011

Sundance Film Festival... a bitter, broken dream.

Some of you know that one of the items on my "bucket list" is to attend Sundance, meaning the Film Festival.

When I say "attend Sundance", I'm not even talking about going up to Park City, trying to catch a glimpse of Ashton Kutcher, in my most stylish cold weather clothes (which would be jeans, an olive colored pea coat and Merrill boots). I just mean I want to see at least one of the films, right down here in Salt Lake, in said stylish clothes. I love Indy films, documentaries, shorts and while Netflix delivers them right to my door and I see a few at the local "art house", the Broadway Centre Theater, I've never actually seen a Festival film screened as part of the Festival.

So this year was going to be my year! I logged on early, got my username and password, registering for the chance to get Advance tickets! I would receive an  email on the 20th of December, telling me if I had been randomly chosen to line up at an appointed place and time to buy tickets. I was so excited and counted down the days til the 20th, when I eagerly checked my email and...

nothing from Sundance.

Saturday the 9th of January, I check my email in the late morning, abt. 11:30.
Hmm, something from Sundance.
"Just a reminder that tomorrow, January 9th, is your ticket day. Bring the form you received on the 20th and your i.d. to purchase your tickets at the box office at 10:30."

Bummer, but on to plan B.

I made my list of favorites and anxiously awaited the 17th of January, online Open Ticket Sales day . Lucky for me, I was off school for MLK on the 17th , enabling me to hit the site at 12:01 a.m., being in the "front of the line", so to speak.

Nothing available, everything on "wait list".

That means you get to the screening two hours before, get a number, come back one half hour before show starts, get in line numerically and see how many get in. That sounds okay, until you realize that there will be people there three hours before, to get the 2 hours-before-numbers.
What to do...
I may decide to try for a wait list. Hope for optimal weather, take one of the young'uns with me, drop them off to get in line while I find a place to park, stand in the cold for who knows how long, wish I had more stylish attire, kill 2-3 hours downtown before the show...

How long before I can get them on Netflix?

Friday, January 14, 2011

A dose of Cute!

In the bleak midwinter we all need a dose of cute!
If you aren't familiar with Chickens in the Road, you need to check her out.
She has a new baby goat. I love baby goats!!!!

Have a wonderful weekend!

Monday, January 10, 2011

So oooo c c ccold!!!

It is "The Road" kind of cold.
It is cold as hell, because I have always thought of hell as a cold place.
It is colder than a witch's tit. (an old saying of my dad's)
It is, and has been, so cold this month.
I am very grateful for a furnace, blankets, socks and coats, also a working car
and the promise of warmth in a couple of months!
It's just winter, being winter.
Now excuse me, while I go turn up the heat!

Sunday, January 2, 2011

the Requisite New Year/Old Year Post

2010, You were a blur.
Like a fast and furious road trip from January 2010 to Dec. 2010
When I got to December I thought, "Wasn't I just here! That can't have been a year ago!"
Like a road trip,
I had many wonderful stops,
saw beautiful scenery,
had some flat tires
met some new people, reconnected with some old
read a lot of books
ran out of gas a couple of times

argued about how to pack the car
sped on the super highway when I should have taken the backroads
thought a lot and came to no conclusions

Next year, what kind of a trip will you be?
How many of the road hazards will I be able to avoid?
How can I get there from here?
Want to revisit some of my favorite places and discover new.
Pay my tickets without whining and
No cruise control.