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WATERMELLEN's Recent Blog Entries

New binoculars, new bird feeder

Wednesday, April 16, 2014


All right then: we have LOTS of snow.

Again.

But: I also have new binoculars (a gift from DH, after I left mine in our rental car returning to the airport from our February Florida vacation).

And: I also have a marvellous new bird feeder that thwarts squirrels (a gift from DS, installed last weekend).

So the combo provided for some fun bird watching after work yesterday. Not robins -- but at my house lots of slate coloured juncos and a few song sparrows. It IS spring, at least by the light lingering past 7 p.m. So the show went on for some time.

bromebirdcare.com/products/classic/

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

DSHONEYC 4/16/2014 11:04AM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon
Next you'll be seeing the sprouting of green. Enjoy every blessed minute of it! Have a a great day!
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PHOENIX1949 4/16/2014 11:03AM

    Interesting feeder. I've lost count of the variety of ones we've had that were destroyed by the squirrels. Gave away the bird bath 'cuz the grackles commandeered it. Now we are down to several hummingbird feeders.

Enjoy.

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_LINDA 4/16/2014 10:06AM

    emoticon emoticon Timely gifts!!
We didn't get much snow, just enough to irritate and make the lawns white again.

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KANOE10 4/16/2014 9:00AM

    We have a bird feeder similar to that. It is fun to watch the arrivals. I am glad the sun is staying out late for you as well.

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PHEBESS 4/16/2014 8:45AM

    We had a bird feeder like that - they're great!

And more birds will arrive shortly!

(One of the best things when we visited the states for my dad's funeral was that it was time for the trumpeter swans, filling fields and lakes and flying across the sky.)

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Robins Singing in the Snow

Tuesday, April 15, 2014




Lots of white stuff falling here this morning -- and yet the morning chorus of robins full strength and regardless. Genuine robin song too: not irritable robin scolding sounds.

I will wear my robin redbreast leather jacket in their honour!

And: I too will refrain from irritable noises!!

Singing though might be more than I can muster.

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

ALIIDA 4/16/2014 5:46AM

    "I too will refrain from irritable noises."

I will make that my mantra. emoticon emoticon emoticon

Thank you for your wisdom. emoticon

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1CRAZYDOG 4/15/2014 4:01PM

  Awesome photos!

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DSHONEYC 4/15/2014 10:48AM

    emoticon Make some beautiful music today!

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_LINDA 4/15/2014 10:46AM

    Wow! That's good! Cool photos!! Our robins have not found their voice as of yet! Mom thinks the cold has frozen their poor little beaks shut :PP

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BOOKAPHILE 4/15/2014 10:31AM

    When does spring usually come in your area? I like all the seasons, but I'm usually ready for the next one before it actually arrives.

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KALIGIRL 4/15/2014 10:20AM

    Here's to singing through the blessings of life!
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JIBBIE49 4/15/2014 9:56AM

    Those robins should come down here on the Gulf Coast and enjoy the nice weather here in Pensacola where my Robins are eating from my bird feeder. The Doves are pigs who chase the others off, but then the Blue Jay has a lot of nerve and will get in on the side of the feeder.

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PHEBESS 4/15/2014 9:34AM

    Don't you just love how nature seems to have more wisdom than we mere mortals? Even a robin can sing despite the snow.

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DDOORN 4/15/2014 9:26AM

    Our turn comes tonight as the temps drop precipitously to 18 with snow as well!

Don

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PHOENIX1949 4/15/2014 9:18AM

    emoticon

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NANCY- 4/15/2014 8:52AM

    Love your spirit.
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SLIMMERJESSE 4/15/2014 8:44AM

    Lovely.

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ROXYZMOM 4/15/2014 8:14AM

    What a pretty sight and sound to wake up to!
Thanks for the share!

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KANOE10 4/15/2014 7:55AM

    Enjoy that jacket and honor those poor freezing birds! It has got to get warmer soon up there!


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ONEKIDSMOM 4/15/2014 7:39AM

    emoticon Here's to "joyful noise"! And robin redbreast leather jackets. emoticon

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HTML? Profanity?

Monday, April 14, 2014

Tried to post this on ONEKIDSMOM's blog and was blocked because of HTML and profanity???

None that I can see -- so will it post here?

Another Siebold equation:

D + V + P > C

where D = dissatisfaction
V = vision
P = process
> = must be greater than
C= Cost.

And I'd quarrel with Siebold on this one only in so far as I think D could be "desire" and need not be "dissatisfaction" actually.

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

NANCY- 4/15/2014 8:51AM

    It could be both... Dissatisfaction and desire. It depends on where the passion emanates from.
As for the HTML it is the greater than sign.
Profanity... I don't see any.
But I had problems with springtime pussy willows.

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OVERWORKEDJANET 4/15/2014 6:46AM

    My jury is still out on the equation as my scientist are mulling it over.
In what context was this equation?
Sometimes cost can be equal to or greater than the process of vision and "desire".
You need to decide if the benefits are worth the cost.
Example
My reluctance to join the expensive gym (cost) where I will reap the benefits (desire) of companionship of newfound friends, the (vision) of a better body and the (process) of making the exercise stick. Is the cost greater than or or less than than the end result?

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1CRAZYDOG 4/14/2014 9:08PM

  Looks like you had your question answered. Frankly, it's kinda silly! But there you have it!

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ONEKIDSMOM 4/14/2014 7:41PM

    The angle brackets, also know as "less than" and "greater than" signs are often interpreted as part of an HTML tag even if they are not intended as such. I get that error if I manage to split an emoticon by having my cursor in the wrong place when I insert one.

And I was not allowed to call something BS (written out) as considered profane. Most often unintended or our sensibilities aren't as strict as the software watching over us! LOL!

I like desire in your sense better than dissatisfaction, although both work.

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DSHONEYC 4/14/2014 10:34AM

    I recently got that error as well trying to post on someone's blog...glitch I guess. I think I agree about the D - at least that was my most recent case. It took dissatisfaction with my current circumstances to motivate me and dispel the "excuses". But then, at some point desire must take over as we recalculate the costs.

Happy Monday! emoticon

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PHEBESS 4/14/2014 10:30AM

    Definitely the greater than sign - it's used in html.

Doesn't let you do sh*take mushrooms, either.

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_LINDA 4/14/2014 9:52AM

    I get that error message too if I try to use certain symbols -too strange.
For sure need must outweigh the cost..

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JOPAPGH 4/14/2014 9:27AM

    It's the greater than sign that makes Spark puke. If you type out the words "greater than" it will allow the post.

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GODZDESIGN95 4/14/2014 8:40AM

    I have saw that message many times. sometimes it is a greater or less than sign somewhere or a letter and sign. My sight is not what good(needing glasses and fingers getting a little stiffer) I always go over things when I get that no hmlt.

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KANOE10 4/14/2014 8:24AM

    I could see desire being stronger than dissatisfaction..plus also a more positive spin than dissatisfaction. Definitely vision and process are important also and outweigh the
cost.

I think the greater than sign was the problem. I have gotten that message also.

Happy Monday. Hope you have a nice jacket for today. I am wearing a black and white print jacket.

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DDOORN 4/14/2014 8:18AM

    I think of desire as sort of a combination of the negative consequences of remaining the same plus the alluring vision of how one would prefer things to be.

Don

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Lazy Asian Chicken and Biker Tattoos

Sunday, April 13, 2014

What a lazy soup recipe!

On hand: a bag of frozen Chinese style vegetables (carrots, broccoli, onion, water chestnuts, mushrooms); chicken broth; 3 frozen chicken breasts; some low cal Szechuan peanut sauce; brown rice vermicelli; chili flakes. And: a huge bunch of beet greens (tops from the fresh candy striped beets I bought for this week's salads).

Soaked the vermicelli (broken into shorter lengths) in boiling water for two minutes. Simmered the chicken, cubed, in the chicken broth. Stirred in the frozen vegetables and just brought to a simmer again. Added a good whack of the peanut sauce. Washed the beet greens carefully (very sandy!) and chopped lightly in the food processor with a bit of water and then stirred them into the hot broth, removing from the heat to retain the colour and a bit of crunchiness -- the stems are red, the leaves are green, and the overall effect is quite pretty!

Couldn't have been easier or quicker.

And: many thanks to all for your good wishes on that last clinic visit. So many of us experience cancer, either personally or at close hand among our family and friends. The c-word is still a terrifying one, the treatment process is still arduous: cut it out, burn it out, poison it out. But for many of us, and even though we may never be quite the same again, recovery does happen.

My tiny radiation tattoos haven't faded -- and of course it was those radiation tattoos that inspired me to start wearing leather "biker jackets" instead of stuffy suits to work. Tattoos weren't my chosen look (heck, I don't even have pierced ears, have never coloured my hair!!) But I figured: if I had to have the tattoos, might as well complete the look, and so I've acquired quite a collection of leather and suede jackets, mostly inexpensively off ebay and etsy. Some definite biker style and some more demure. Black, brown, beige, red, orange, blue, green, purple, pink . . . outrageous, really.

The slightly tough leather jacket style has just been my a private biker tattoo joke (which I guess I'm now sharing with you, right?)

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

DSHONEYC 4/14/2014 11:17AM

    Hmmmmmm, my tattoos faded long ago. But my Italian, red leather coat with the zipper up the front fits me now!

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DALID414 4/13/2014 11:42PM

    Thanks for letting us in on the joke

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1CRAZYDOG 4/13/2014 9:32PM

  I like the story of survival behind the biker leather. Makes perfect sense!

You soup sounds incredibly good!

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ROXYZMOM 4/13/2014 9:10PM

    I totally love leather - especially when it fits like a glove!!

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DOGLADY13 4/13/2014 3:41PM

    The soup sounds delicious. Will you come to my house and make me some, please? I also like the leather jacket look. When you find something that works, you have to stick with it. It helps that it means something more for you.



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WAY2GOCAT 4/13/2014 2:43PM

    emoticon

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KANOE10 4/13/2014 1:03PM

    I think leather jackets of all colors are fun. That was an innovative way to adapt to the tattoos! Hope you find some new jackets this spring.

Your soup sounds easy and yummy. I love peanut sauce!

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_LINDA 4/13/2014 12:14PM

    You are just too emoticon Great idea with the leather jackets! You own it!!
Oh man, a few of my favorite things going into that soup!! emoticon emoticon
I have never seen candy stripe beets!
Enjoy!

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SLIMMERJESSE 4/13/2014 11:07AM

    I have had the same history with leather jackets of all types. Like you, I get the deals. They are so much fun.

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TRAVELGRRL 4/13/2014 10:52AM

    Yeah, you're bad, YOU'RE BAD! Dangerous looking lawyer with tattoos in a leather jacket! I'm sure you rock the look!

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NANCY- 4/13/2014 10:49AM

    Love the soup.
You rock that leather.

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SMITTY4RL 4/13/2014 10:06AM

    Rock that leather jacket, girlfriend--you earned it! P.S. Thanks for the soup recipe ;-).

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DDOORN 4/13/2014 9:55AM

    I've got my navy beans soaking, some cabbage waiting to be shredded. Thinking about some canned tomatoes, onions, garlic and green beans, jazz up the spices and it oughta be good to go! :-)

Don

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PHEBESS 4/13/2014 9:42AM

    The soup sounds fabulous! (I love satay mostly due to the fabulous spicy peanut sauce.)

And I love the biker moto jacket look to go with your tats, LOL! (Although I have a tattoo on my sacrum, to camouflage a birthmark I didn't like.)

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ONEKIDSMOM 4/13/2014 9:39AM

    Way to creatively adapt... and sounds like another winner of a soup recipe! emoticon

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Last Trip to the Clinic

Thursday, April 10, 2014

I joined Spark People almost five years ago -- while I was in the immediate throes of treatment for breast cancer. With an estrogen-related tumour, and knowing that estrogen is stored in fat cells, I wanted to peel off the excess pounds which made breast cancer recurrence more probable.

Yesterday, and following up from my February mammogram, I attended at the oncology clinic for my official "five year all clear" discharge as a cancer patient.

It was a surprisingly moving occasion for me. It's a beautiful sunlit space in a purpose-built cancer clinic (new since I was diagnosed) with lovely views over gardens. But as I looked around the waiting room at all the anxious and ill faces, I saw many persons without hair, many persons slightly jaundiced, many persons clearly in pain, many persons slumped over with fatigue, and remembered how I'd felt myself on previous visits. Of course I'd checked in at the computer on each clinic visit over five years and recorded my levels of pain, fatigue, anxiety etc. at each visit. Yesterday I got the five year graphic printout from all of these clinic visits.

Now I'm feeling completely well. And statistically my chances of recurrence after five years are not significantly higher than anyone else's chances of getting cancer. I'm officially discharged as a cancer patient.

I'm so grateful for the superb level of cancer care that I received throughout this long journey from our absolutely amazing medical system. No charge (other than nominal hospital parking fees). The thorough final review of my chart; gentle and thorough examination; invitation to call back any time if I encounter any symptoms that cause me worry; the commitment to continue my annual mammograms going forward; plus the personal kindness and celebratory good wishes of the nurse practitioner at the clinic yesterday were astounding. She made me feel that it really mattered to her. Nobody can "pay" anyone to deliver good news with such good will.

And thanks, Spark People, for helping me sustain weight loss! Nothing feels better than feeling well.

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

OHMEMEME 4/13/2014 10:43PM

    Greatest "aha" and NSV! That's what this journey is ultimately about. Thanks for sharing. emoticon

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GODZDESIGN95 4/13/2014 4:39PM

    emoticon

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DOGLADY13 4/13/2014 3:40PM

    Wow. Just beautiful.

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TRAVELGRRL 4/13/2014 10:49AM

    Wow, I am so happy for you! It's been a tough 5 years, I'm sure, but by getting slim you've improved your health AND enriched our lives as well. I absolutely am thrilled for you.

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SMITTY4RL 4/12/2014 9:34PM

    emoticon Congratulations! Wonderful news!

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PUDLECRAZY 4/12/2014 8:49PM

    Oh wow! This is the best news! Congratulations! My mother and one of my close friends got through their five year mark; my mother lived 15 years longer with no reoccurrence (she died of a fall ~ not cancer) and my friend has been 10 years with nor reoccurrence. That five year all clear is significant and I am so happy for you! emoticon


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HIPPICHICK1 4/12/2014 12:14PM

    That is wonderful news!! I'm very happy for you.
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GERIKRAGH 4/12/2014 10:44AM

    Such great news. I hope you're jumping for joy! Best of luck in the future!

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OVERWORKEDJANET 4/11/2014 9:11PM

    I smile for you. emoticon

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KRICKET4 4/11/2014 7:29PM

    That is simply wonderful!
Wishing you continued good health.

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ROXYZMOM 4/11/2014 11:04AM

    Wow! That is wonderful news! Kudos on being proactive and taking such great care of yourself. I am very happy for you!!
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KANOE10 4/11/2014 7:09AM

    emoticon 5 years is a wonderful accomplishment. I am glad you received such excellent and caring medical help.

Keeping your weight off for these years is such a boost for your healthy body.

Thanks for sharing your journey of success and I know it will continue.

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MANDELOVICH 4/11/2014 12:11AM

    Wow, how wonderful!

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_LINDA 4/10/2014 10:56PM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon
Doing the Happy Dance for you!!
emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon
So very glad to hear the all clear!!
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ONEKIDSMOM 4/10/2014 10:30PM

    So happy to hear your good news! emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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BLUENOSE63 4/10/2014 6:20PM

  Wonderful spectacular news!

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SPINNINGJW 4/10/2014 5:48PM

    What a wonderful thing to celebrate!


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SLENDERELLA61 4/10/2014 4:36PM

    CONGRATULATIONS!! You have done so well for yourself. Your gratitude and appreciation of life is beautiful, too. Celebrate that 5 years. Wow, you are no more likely to get cancer than anyone else. That is wonderful! With your strong commitment to keep living the healthy life I predict a long, long happy life for you!!!

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PHOENIX1949 4/10/2014 3:38PM

    emoticon on the clean bill of health emoticon

In my Cardio Doc's waiting room Monday, a lady asked about the reason for my medical mask. I explained that I was allergic to almost everything except Oxygen and it was a preventive measure. She said she always asks because she is a 10-year breast cancer survivor and offers prayers and encouragement for others going through the same.

A first-cousin I grew up next door to is an 18-year breast cancer survivor and her husband is an 18-year survivor of advanced colon cancer. This 'miracle couple' hosts our annual family reunion.

emoticon on shedding those extra estrogen cells and maintaining.

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MISSUSRIVERRAT 4/10/2014 2:22PM

    That is just wonderful and I am truly so happy for you! emoticon

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DALID414 4/10/2014 2:00PM

    I got a knot in my throat.
Congrats on the clean bill of health emoticon

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DSHONEYC 4/10/2014 11:58AM

    How well I remember, though cannot believe it has been 5 years...makes me think about what I was doing this date 5 years ago. Most likely recovering from my 1st of 3 lumpectomys... no longer crying at the drop of a hat because of my fears of the unknown. I had caring and compassionate caregivers, a supportive workplace, and an extended network of friends. I have had opportunities since then to help others (my niece in Omaha, 2 friends in my chorale group) and I wouldn't trade that "experience" 5 years ago for anything. A part of the journey to who I am today.

It is no coincidence that this morning a good friend emailed me to asked if she could give my name & number to a good friend of hers who just got the 'the news'. I relied upon you and many others during that scary yet sometimes self-confident time in my life. This is a time for gratitude and continuation of a life lived well.
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JANTHEBLONDE 4/10/2014 11:03AM

    What a fantastic report! That is fabulous you're you are cancer free! I am so happy for you! sending you extra hugs!
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PHEBESS 4/10/2014 10:40AM

    YAY, glad you had the chance to officially celebrate your all clear!

emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

And it sounds like a wonderful place. (One more reason the USA needs socialized medicine, too!)

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PAMAPPLE 4/10/2014 10:32AM

    What a great report!! Here's to a life that is cancer-free! So happy for you!!

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NUOVAELLE 4/10/2014 9:36AM

    That is great news Ellen! I'm so happy for you! And congratulations on your wise decision to fight the recurrence with a sustainable weight loss. Health is always the best motivator for lifetime maintenance.
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SLIMMERJESSE 4/10/2014 9:32AM

    I'm so happy for you.

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1CRAZYDOG 4/10/2014 9:02AM

  I am absolutely thrilled for you, my dear! My Mom is going on year #2 in June as a breast cancer survivor. **SIGH** It's a long and winding road to get healthy again, but it's worth the fight. So proud of you and am in awe of your spirit. It IS moving to be able to be a 5 year survivor. That's not a journey you take without many changes--physical, emotional and spiritual.

MANY HUGS.

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NANCY- 4/10/2014 8:41AM

    What wonderful news!
You are so right about: "Nothing feels better than feeling well."
I'm so happy for you that you have the treasured gift of feeling well back!!!

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DDOORN 4/10/2014 8:32AM

    Couldn't ask for a better reward than the gift of LIFE! Woo hoo to your successes and pay-offs!

And thank YOU for you have given back to our SparkFamily easily QUADRUPLE what you've received from us! :-)

Don

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KALIGIRL 4/10/2014 8:26AM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon
So happy to hear the fabulous news!

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COCK-ROBIN 4/10/2014 8:25AM

    emoticon

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ALIIDA 4/10/2014 8:16AM

    This is wonderful to read! Congratulations on your all clear with no more future cancer risk than if you hadn't it!

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NELLJONES 4/10/2014 8:12AM

    How wonderful!! Congrats on Five Years post-diagnosis!!

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BROOKLYN_BORN 4/10/2014 8:06AM

    That is such wonderful news! You are such an inspiration to us all.

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BABYSTEPS123 4/10/2014 8:04AM

    Beautifully said. Wonderful news! Thanks for sharing!

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