Happy New Year indeed!

Out with the old, in with the new.  Good riddance to 2011!  I hope to never experience another year like it.  Let’s review:

In January and again in April hurt my back at work.  Can’t really say anymore.  In April my sweet beautiful YOUNG golden retriever Maddie succumbed to her kidney disease.  In the middle of April I was fired from my job.  Can’t really say anymore.  In May started treatment for my back.  Can’t really say anymore.  In the summer my friends lost their 15 year old daughter in a tragic accident.  Affected all of us greatly.  In August my favorite cousin stopped speaking to me because I’m such a mean girl 😦  In October my beloved yellow lab Mollie also died due to a variety of issues.  In December my brother-in-law had a very scary heart attack.   In December my gorgeous YOUNG Simon the Siamese Scaredy Cat died suddenly of heart failure.   There is one more day left of this year.  I am closely guarding my new baby kitten Ozzy.

So overall not a stellar year.  But it wasn’t all bad.  I learned who my real friends are, and they helped me immensely getting through it all.  My family also stepped up to the plate and grieved with me over my losses.  I learned that life is short and not to take it for granted.  I learned that the love of family and friends is most important.  I learned to be humble and accept my new fate in life, which is so precarious right now.  I learned to keep my mind sharp and look at new avenues for my work.  I learned not to waste time on people, places or things that don’t give back.  I learned that God can indeed provide comfort and guidance if only you will listen.  I learned a lot.

I am approaching 2012 with optimism.  I just know that good things are in store for me.  I have friends and family who love and care about me.  I have a new furry boy.  I am looking forward, not backwards.  I welcome the challenges ahead.

Come on 2012.  I am ready for you.

 

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Most hated man in the NBA

That’s my boy, Kris Humphries.  As far as I am concerned, he should be the most hated man in America.  I know I already wrote a blog about him called 72 days, but I think he bears recycling.

The NBA is calling him Chumpries for being led a merry dance by the Kardashian Klan, but I say foul on him all the way.  Whether or not he was “chosen” to be the lucky groom or not, he is still a big bully who uses his size and strength to get his own way, and acts like spoiled brat.  I don’t know if he was edited to be shown throwing Kim around like a rag doll, but no one should be treated like that, not even a Kardashian.   Even if the wedding was staged/fake/whatever, I don’t really think the Kardashians would end it so quickly unless he was a real monster.  From the things you hear him say, to the way he treats EVERYONE, I think they realized quickly that they had to dump him before he ended up really hurting Kim.

Dr. Drew actually accused Kim of abuse after she tried to swat Kris after he bent her big toe in half.  Excuse me?????  Dr. Drew better get a clue.  If he really thinks Kim could hurt Kris more than a mosquito bite, he better get a new profession.

I know he signed a big $8 million dollar deal with the New Jersey Nets.  I hope to God he stays in New Jersey.   As a good Catholic girl I don’t want to wish harm to anyone, but if I saw him walking down the street, and I was in my SUV……..

The reason for the season

Christmas is almost upon us, and personally I can’t wait. I decided this year to make it happy and full of love instead of sad and lonely.  I’ve had a rough year, but the love and kindness of friends and family truly amazed me this year.  And even though I don’t have tons of money to spend on presents, I’ve had a reaffirmation of faith in God and Jesus, and really, isn’t it about them and not us?

People are appreciative of just the gesture of thinking of them, not how much money you spent.  I have the most wonderful friends in the world, and it was so gratifying to me to make up little gifts bags of chocolates for them.  I also made up gift bags of treats for all the animals in my life in my neighborhood that I love so much….Ozzy my new baby kitty, Roxie the rottweiler next door, Neku the kitty next door, Abby the border collie of my brother’s two doors down, Diesel and Casey the golden retrievers across the street, Amber the sheltie of my sister’s around the corner and her two kitties Spencer and Zoe.

Doing something as simple as all that put a smile on my face, and reminded me of the true meaning of Christmas.  Christ mass.  The day baby Jesus was born.  A day of celebration throughout the land.  I love going to mass at Christmas time, singing all the old familiar songs along with the choir.  Everything is so festive and everyone is so happy and families spend time together giving thanks and praise to our Lord Jesus Christ.  I think I will go to midnight mass this year.  I like it the best.

Of course we will do presents.  The family will gather at my brother’s house and the wrapping paper will fly off the gifts to the children.  We will go out for our annual Christmas cocktail (or two) and then back for a nice dinner and gifts.  Then all the kids will go to bed to wait for Santa.  Christmas morning I will go to my sisters to see her little grandchild who is 2 open her gifts.  (Is there any cuter age????)  I have already received my gift from Santa this year, my new laptop, and I am so grateful to Santa!  I will be sure to say a prayer of thanks on Christmas for that.

So, I want to wish all my wonderful friends and family a Merry Christmas, and hope they find joy and love and the true meaning of Christmas in their stockings!  I thank God for all the great friends and family I have.  You truly do reap what you sow!

P.S.  Sorry for all the platitudes in this post, but it seemed so apropos!

Put me on the naughty list

I’m tired of being on the nice list.  It’s time I was naughty.  The only problem is, I’ve forgotten how.

I was always the quintessential good Catholic girl.  I swallowed what the nuns taught us hook, line and sinker.  Usually they told us that boys were devils, and that black patent leather shoes really do reflect up.  Our school uniforms made sure our white blouses were covered up in all the “bra” areas, so we had lovely plaid jumpers.  In high school it was even worse…..we had vests.  And then sweaters to cover up the vests.  Double coverage over those lily white blouses!  After all, the nuns said that white reminded boys of sheets, and they only want to get us in bed.  I kid you not.  I wish I was.

But they were nothing compared to my mother.  My mother continually accused my sister and I of foul play with the boys and would threaten to take us to the priest to confess our sins.  My sister just ignored her and did whatever she wanted.  I believed every word and stay a virgin until after college.  Yes, that’s right.  After college.  And I married him.  Cause that’s what good Catholic girls do.

After divorce #1 (I’m a two-time loser), I did try to make up for lost time.  I figured I was repressed and needed to expand my horizons so to speak.  I had a great time.   I might have made the naughty list once or twice.  But heck, a girl needs some fun every now and then.  My ex should have stuck around.  My 30’s were the best years of my life!

But alas, all good things must come to an end, and along came  big mistake  husband #2. I was initially so hopefully, but I should have listened to my gut instincts and run like hell in the opposite direction.  He messed me and my life up REALLY BAD.  Needless to say, my 40’s sucked.  Wasted ten good years on a losing proposition.

So here I am again.  Footloose and fancy free.   Haven’t had a really banner year,  In fact I would rate it in the top three worst, right after divorce #1 and divorce #2 . And I hate to tell you, but the 50’s are NOT the new 40’s, at least not in my case.

I can’t wait for 2012.  It just HAS to be better. Improvement plans in all facets of life are in the works . So fair warning.  I’m shooting for the naughty list next year!

Doing the Tebow

Meet Tim Tebow.  The man, the legend….what a quarterback should look like.  High school star, college star, Heismann Trophy winner.  He’s got it all.  Oh, and by the way, he is a Christian, and proud to show it.

Whether or not his stats bear out his greatness, I am a believer.  It’s not just about winning.  It’s about making people believe that they can.  Tebow is God’s quarterback and has made quite a statement in not just the NFL, but the world. 

 

 

 

Tebow has now become part of our lexicon. He is a proper noun as in Tim Tebow, he is a noun like “That was classic Tebow”.  He is a verb as in “Tebowing”, or more specifically, to get down on one knee and start praying, even if everyone around you is doing something different.  He is an adjective too unfortunately, as in “The Bears got Tebow-beat on Sunday”.

So even though I am a Bears fan, excuse me cause I got some Tebowing to do.

Smitten with a Kitten

Simon the Siamese Scaredy Cat died late Friday night from a heart defect.  He was a young cat.  Once again my heart was broken, and I made a total fool of myself being emotional and crying buckets of tears.  Again.  I railed at God and wondered why all my animals had to die.  This year.  Three of them.  And if anybody EVER says to me again “it’s only an animal” I will drop them where they stand.  (FYI nobody ever said that to me about Simon.  It was about my dog.  And he was nobody I will ever see again.  He was NEVER a friend).

My sister wanted to run out and get me a new kitten, but I couldn’t imagine any other cat than Simon.  He was the perfect cat for me, and I loved him so much. But God had different plans for me.

As I was leaving my house Sunday afternoon, I saw my neighbors outside.  They had asked me a few weeks back if I wanted another cat, as the wife had taken one home that was found at her work.  At the time I said no.  But something yesterday made me swing into their driveway and inquire about the kitten.  They said their other animals were getting along with it a little better.  I went on my way, not sure if I was relieved or disappointed.

Later than evening, I got a phone call from them.  They said “Come get your new son!”  I went over in my PJ’s to meet the kitten.  What a handsome little guy!  He was bouncing all over the place and was full of piss and vinegar.  But my heart melted.  I took him home for a trial run.

He spent a good hour exploring my house, and sniffing around for that “other” cat smell.  Then he climbed up my legs into my lap with his little sharp kitten claws and then curled up in neck/shoulder and promptly started to purr, before he nodded off.

Later we went to bed.  He snuggled right up against me.  He was so tiny I was afraid of rolling over and crushing him, but we made it through the night without incident.  I did hear him thrashing around with kitty toys a few times during the night, but in the morning he was sound asleep in my neck.  (Note to self:  remove all kitty toys from bedroom)

I am totally smitten.  I named him Ozzie.  Isn’t that a cute name?

30 years

30 years.  That is a long time.  That is how long ago my dad died.  So long ago my brain has actually forgotten the exact date, but I know it was middle December.  It was not a Merry Christmas that year.

At the time, I was newly married, and in my early twenties.  I had just started grad school, in addition to working full time.  My parents lived an hour away, and when my dad was diagnosed with lung cancer, I told them I would drop out of school since it would suck up so much of my time.  My dad said no, absolutely not, you are the first child in our extended family to get a Master’s degree, let alone a college degree.  So, I continued on.  My husband at the time was also going to grad school and working full time, with a lot of travel thrown in the mix.  Sunday was the only day we saw each other.  We would drive to whatever hospital my dad was at, or his house, to spend the afternoon and watch the Bears with him.

It was on a Sunday that my dad died.  He waited until everybody was gone for the evening, and then he died an awful death from lung cancer that had spread all over his body and bones.  A major artery by his heart burst, and he managed to get out of bed before he died.   I think my dad waited so we wouldn’t have to witness it.  The week before we had thought it was the end, as he lost most of his vital signs and was unconscious for a day and a half while we stood vigil over his bedside.  I guess that was a trial run.

I remember getting the dreaded middle of the night hysterical phone call from my mother, “Daddy’s dead!”.  I immediately jumped out of bed, threw a few clothes in my suitcase, and my husband and I drove to my mom’s house.  My sister and brother were there too, and we all cried the rest of the night.  In the morning we had to go make all the arrangements.  I think we were all in a daze.  My mother broke down more than once.  That was a very hard day.

I was actually embarrassed by my company at the time.  My sister’s small downtown bank sent her home in a cab when my dad was unconscious so she wouldn’t have to wait for the train.  At the wake, they sent a HUGE arrangement of flowers, and all the people came to the wake.  My company sent a stock arrangement.  My department sent nothing, and my boss and  co-workers were not at the wake or funeral, because of work.  It was a busy time of year. In fact my boss gave me a hard time about missing work.  Nice.  Fortune 100 company.  Crikey, at one of my last jobs, my assistant took almost a week off when her dog died, with my full blessing!

My dad was a Navy vet.  He served on the U.S.S. Boston, and witnessed many atrocities, especially with the atomic bomb.  He never spoke of them to us kids.  I don’t even think he ever spoke of it to my mom.  When he died, my brother got a big box of medals etc.  He put them in a beautiful shadow box display in the family room.

I often wondered why my dad didn’t have a military funeral.  I think it’s because my grandma and my mom blamed the Navy for his illness.  My grandma said he got radiation from the bomb, and that’s why he died so young, at 53.  Possible, I guess.  I don’t think the 3 packs of cigarettes helped any.  My grandma says he picked up the habit in the Navy.  I suppose everyone did back then.  He also had a tatoo on his bicep that he always kept hidden that he got on a port call, lol.  Nothing dirty, just a panther.

I miss my dad.  I feel like we got cheated out of his best years.  The years when he was not a father, but a friend.  I never appreciated my father when he was alive as much as I should have.  Us kids were young adults then, and all married, and just when my father was going to enjoy life, he died.  My mother was then left a widow for the next 23 years, and dependent upon us kids then.  She got cheated too.  But she is in heaven now with my dad.

My dad’s birthday was November 21st.  So Happy Birthday Dad, and Merry Christmas!  You are missed!

Herman Cain’s 15 minutes of fame

Hey Herman….how’s that 15 minutes of fame working out for you?  Not so good?  That’s what I thought.  Haven’t you learned ANYTHING from your predecessors in politics, or in the public eye for that matter?  If you aren’t SQUEAKY CLEAN, stay out of the pool!

His ad campaign commercial where his Chief of Staff blows smoke and then Cain gives that swarmy smirky smile at the end sums him up perfectly.

I wonder how many office pools are out there taking bets on how long it will be until the wife leaves and the truth comes out.  The truth will always come out.  You can’t pay off EVERYONE to keep their mouth shut. (Although what the sexual allure that Cain thinks he has bemuses me).  It doesn’t matter if you are Democrat, Republican, sports star, movie star.  And don’t you dare play the race card Herman!  You preyed on all colors of women!

I would have more respect for him if he had just fessed up and taken his lumps like a man.  The public will always forgive you if you tell the truth.  Hey, it only took Tiger a year after he told the truth.  Now he’s back on the top of his game.

IMHO, Cain is a swarmy sexual predator, and will get his just deserts.  Never liked him from the get-go.  Hopefully he will fade into oblivion where he belongs.  Karma’s a bitch Herman.  Shut your mouth and take it like a man.  I am not listening to you anymore and am glad I dont have to look at your face or hear your 9-9-9 tag line again!