MOMMA_BEAR_69's SparkPeople Blog MOMMA_BEAR_69's Blog on SparkPeople, home of free diet plans and a healthy living community Although a loser, I am definitely a big winner!!! <img src=""> <BR> <BR> It has been a long time and a lot of work including tracking my nutrition and exercise every day since starting Spark People on 9/23/2007. However since starting my healthier lifestyle journey, I have battled several health issues and won!!! I HAVE WON!!! I will continue to maintain my healthy lifestyle because I feel so much better after having lost 97 pounds. I have to admit I gained and lost many pounds over th... Thu, 16 Apr 2015 10:19:37 EST HAPPY VALENTINE'S DAY!!! <img src=""> <BR> <BR> Be sure to tell your loved ones how much they mean to you and give them a great big hug. We are never promised tomorrow and need to take advantage of every day as our days turn into years!!! (((HUGS))) May your blessings in the new year be so many you are unable to count them all!!! ENJOY your Valentine's Day with your friends, family and loved ones. <BR> Blessings, love and hugs, <BR> Helen <BR> <BR> BLESSING... Sat, 14 Feb 2015 11:00:42 EST Goodbye 2014...Hello 2015 <img src=""> <BR> <BR> <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> <BR> <BR> Be sure to tell your loved ones how much they mean to you and give them a great big hug. We are never promised tomorrow and need to take advantage of every day as our days turn into years!!! (((HUGS))) May your blessings in the new year be so many you are unable to count them all!!! <BR> Blessings, love and hug... Wed, 31 Dec 2014 11:42:25 EST SEPTEMBER 30...HAPPY BIRTHDAY, DAD!!!! MISSING YOU BUT LOVING YOU ALWAYS!!! Today is my father's birthday although I haven't seen him in 35 years. He has been on my mind all day. Lots of happy memories of the man who raised six children by himself after my parents divorced when I was five years old. What a brave man he was taking six children, ages 8 months to 9 years. He moved us from Pennsylvania to Ohio at that time...during the summer before I turned six and ready to start first grade. We had some great times as well as sorrowful times but he provided for us alth... Tue, 30 Sep 2014 11:44:09 EST Update on Shannon For those of you who were following my blogs on my nephew Shannon, I just wanted to update you on his progress. He was blinded in an accident last fall when an aerosol can exploded in a fire they were burning and had several eye surgeries. <BR> <BR> Shannon posted this on July 5: I got to see the fireworks for the first time in a few years last night. we went to Newton Falls and they put on a fantastic show. I"m not sure if it was just because I could see but it was the best fireworks show... Tue, 23 Sep 2014 22:55:50 EST Liberty Bell Tolls for Independence I tried to post this yesterday on our Fourth of July and America's Independence Day but was having issues with SP. <BR> <BR> Here’s a little history of the Liberty Bell: <BR> <BR> The Pennsylvania Assembly ordered the Liberty Bell in 1751 to commemorate the 50-year anniversary of William Penn’s Charter of Privileges, the original Constitution of the state of Pennsylvania. <BR> <BR> On Nov. 1, 1751, a letter was sent to order a bell from Whitechapel Foundry in London and to inscribe on it... Sat, 5 Jul 2014 13:36:28 EST A little Election Day excitement... We had a very long day last Tuesday at the election polls. Only 27 people showed up to vote and four of the 27 were the poll workers. We had a gas leak in the building and had to vacate. I was really glad one of our poll workers is married to a gas company employee. She called him and he reported it to the gas company and they came right out. They shut the gas off, put a red tag on their cooking stove and aired out the building. Of course there is no contingency plan for any emergency. ... Mon, 26 May 2014 19:57:22 EST Liam and Winnie the Pooh Today Richelle had scheduled a six month photo shoot for Liam. She crocheted his blanket and his Winnie the Pooh Hat as well as doing the printing on his Honey Pot. What an AWESOME job she has done on everything. <BR> This photo was a sneak preview of his photo shoot....compliments of the photographer, Paige: <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> I hope you enjoyed these pi... Wed, 14 May 2014 23:21:56 EST Many things to be thankful for... Ken and I have enjoyed working in our yard today while the sun was shining brightly. Now we are in the middle of a thunderstorm with lots of rain. <BR> Many things have been happening this month. McKenzie competed in a dance competition and her team won Grand Supreme with their routine! AWESOME!!! She was so excited she just about burst her seams. The girls work very hard every week and deserved their very high scores. <BR> <img src=" Sat, 10 May 2014 18:46:18 EST Another great day with Richelle and Liam. PTL for my many blessings!!! <img src=""> <BR> Liam enjoying his bath time with his daddy. <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> Liam's priceless expression when I was talking with him and singing hymns to him today. <BR> <BR> I enjoyed a wonderful day with Richelle and Liam. Days I spend with them are beyond priceless to me. Believe me when I say that I enjoy every moment with them! <BR> <BR> Be sure to tell your l... Tue, 25 Mar 2014 21:58:57 EST ENJOY my picture blog of Liam and McKenzie <img src=""> <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> McKenzie enjoying holding Liam. She just loves him!!! <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> <img src="http://photos-ak.sparkpeopl... Mon, 10 Mar 2014 22:23:41 EST THANK YOU SPARK FRIENDS!!! Just want to say a great big THANK YOU to all who saw my pictures of Liam and read my blogs! <BR> Your support (no matter how big or small) is appreciated and makes me want to continue to lead as healthy a life as I can. THANK YOU!!! <BR> <BR> We live south of I-79 and knew we would be getting hit with a lot of snow, but I was still surprised when I woke up this morning and we had twelve inches of fresh snow. It took me over an hour and a half to shovel our sidewalks and my elderly neighbo... Mon, 3 Feb 2014 22:38:22 EST Recent pictures of Liam...Part 2 With the continuing extremely cold temperatures all our area schools have cancelled classes for tomorrow as well as all the Pittsburgh schools. Even though we did get more snow today, there was no major accumulation. I did complete shoveling earlier. I also shoveled for my elderly neighbors. <BR> <BR> The following pictures of Liam were taken on Saturday, January 25, 2014. <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> <img src="http://photos-a... Mon, 27 Jan 2014 20:51:19 EST Recent pictures of Liam...Part 1 Just a quick update. First many of you know that the temperatures are below zero with colder than ever wind chill temperature. The weather man said it is the coldest weather we have had in over twenty years. Even our local churches and many churches in Pittsburgh cancelled services for today. I missed going to church but I spent much of my day meditating and reading my Bible. <BR> <BR> I did go out and shovel several times today. It took me a while as we had more than twelve inches of fr... Sun, 26 Jan 2014 19:47:05 EST Recent pictures of Liam...Part 1 Just a quick update. First many of you know that the temperatures are below zero with colder than ever wind chill temperature. The weather man said it is the coldest weather we have had in over twenty years. Even our local churches and many churches in Pittsburgh cancelled services for today. I missed going to church but I spent much of my day meditating and reading my Bible. <BR> <BR> I did go out and shovel several times today. It took me a while as we had more than twelve inches of fr... Sun, 26 Jan 2014 19:47:04 EST Winter is back in Southwestern PA!!! This beautiful picture was taken by my dear friend Patty this morning. This is an example of what all the areas around us looks like today. <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> First thing this morning I shoveled the sidewalk to the newpaper box to get my newspaper fix for the day. Great cardio right off the bat! <BR> <BR> Later I went out and shovel the driveway. It is so much easier to do it in small amounts, especially when it is on... Sat, 18 Jan 2014 21:36:26 EST January 11, 2014 Memories... <img src=""> <BR> The best way to start my day!!! <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> I saw this and it brought back many memories. I am sure many mothers will relate to this. <BR> <BR> We are having some beautiful 58 degree weather today. I am loving the rain and all that is happening today...getting to spend some time playing with Harley (Richelle's Australian Shepherd). Not as great as... Sat, 11 Jan 2014 17:15:17 EST HAPPY NEW YEAR 2014!!! <img src=""> <BR> <BR> Wishing everyone a happy new year, full of success, love, health, wealth and joy!!! <BR> <BR> Be sure to tell your loved ones how much they mean to you and give them a great big hug. We are never promised tomorrow and need to take advantage of every day as our days turn into years!!! (((HUGS))) <BR> Blessings, love and hugs, <BR> Helen <BR> <BR> BLESSINGS: <BR> GOD <BR> FAITH <BR> HOPE <BR> LOVE <BR> FREE... Tue, 31 Dec 2013 23:25:27 EST Merry Christmas!!! Merry Christmas from the Kirby's... Make sure you count your blessings twice and praise God for the miracles He has provided you and yours. <BR> <BR> Although we have experienced many losses this year, I know that my many blessings far out-numbered the sadness and grief. Praise the Lord for his many blessings and for my life which He has given me!! <BR> <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> Wed, 25 Dec 2013 23:13:33 EST Prayers needed... My nephew Shannon will be having his eye saving surgery Tuesday morning scheduled for 8:00 - 8:30. I was talking with my sister-in-law earlier this evening and she updated me on the latest!!! Praying that all goes well and his eyesight is restored. <BR> <BR> Also asking for prayers for the family of my younger sister, Sandy, who was found deceased this afternoon. She had wrecked her car upside down in a creek and was walking home. My niece found her mom lying in a ditch about a mile fro... Mon, 16 Dec 2013 20:38:09 EST UPDATE ON SHANNON...PTL!!! Shannon got the good news that his surgery will be within the next two weeks!!!!!!! <BR> Awesome news!!!! <BR> <BR> Shannon and Lisa went to dinner to celebrate only she didn't know the celebration was for her as well. All of the workers at the restaurant came out clapping and she am thinking to herself... how sweet, it's someones birthday. Then they stop at their table and Shannon kneels down and proposes to Lisa. The whole restaurant was in on it and two very sweet couples payed for the... Fri, 6 Dec 2013 18:29:18 EST Liam... <img src=""> <BR> Liam is two weeks old today. <BR> <BR> He is such a blessing and a miracle which God has seen fit to bless our lives with. <BR> <BR> As his pediatrician said in the hospital and at his first office visit...."He is perfect." <BR> <BR> The following are pictures from Liam's first doctor's appointment on Monday, December 2, 2013. I was proud and very happy to be able to attend his office visit with Richelle and Joe.... Thu, 5 Dec 2013 20:12:01 EST A Soldier's Poem for Christmas I believe this started last year and it touched my heart deeply. With the Christmas season upon us, I wanted to share it again. Thank you to the soldiers all over the world. <BR> <BR> <BR> <BR> <BR> T'WAS THE NIGHT BEFORE CHRISTMAS, <BR> <BR> HE LIVED ALL ALONE, <BR> <BR> IN A ONE BEDROOM HOUSE, <BR> <BR> MADE OF PLASTER AND STONE. <BR> <BR> <BR> I HAD COME DOWN THE CHIMNEY, <BR> <BR> WITH PRESENTS TO GIVE, <BR> <BR> AND TO SEE JUST WHO, <BR> <BR> IN THIS HOME, DID LIVE. ... Wed, 4 Dec 2013 11:06:33 EST Picture blog of my new Grandson...Liam!!! Picture blog of Richelle and Joe's baby boy...Liam... <BR> Born Nov. 21, 2013...length 18.5 inches and weight 6 pounds 4 ounces. Such a beautiful baby boy and a miracle for them!!! <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> Liam's first picture <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> Richelle with Liam <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> Liam <BR> <BR> <i... Sun, 1 Dec 2013 19:15:59 EST Asking for prayers for Richelle. Update on Shannon. Sorry it's been so long with no updates. Shannon came home on Monday. All his tests came back normal so now we just have to wait for an appointment at the primary care doctor to see if this is a nerve issue. According to his wife, he is back to his normal goofball self! Ptl!!! <BR> Thank you for all of your prayers! <BR> <BR> Joe and Liam just rushed Richelle to the ER as her blood pressure is 250/130. Still waiting on news from Joe. Richelle and Liam just came home from the hospital ... Wed, 27 Nov 2013 22:23:57 EST Prayers needed for Shannon, please. Prayers please. My nephew, Shannon Gaines is in the hospital with elevated cardiac enzymes. That is all I know for now. He had pains on Saturday and they have admitted him. <BR> <BR> As of last night, they still have no answers. He is still in the hospital with more testing today. No heart attack , blood clot, or stroke, but they don't know why enzymes were elevated. I will keep everyone updated as I know more. <BR> <BR> He has also not been able to have surgery on his eyes yet. Praye... Wed, 20 Nov 2013 20:16:51 EST McKenzie enjoyed Halloween!!! McKenzie didn't go trick or treating this year. Instead she chose to dress up and distribute goodies to the children who came to her grandmothers house. She was initially bored but was really enjoying herself once the kids starting coming. She had over three hundred children and adults show up and was gracious to each one of them as she shared the goodies and her smiles. <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> McKenzie just a bit bored. <BR> <B... Thu, 7 Nov 2013 22:20:17 EST Things are looking up... I have been dealing with a severe sore throat (feels like it full of broken glass) since Saturday, heavy and annoying coughing, runny nose and watery eyes. I was able to see the doctor today. PTL!!! He diagnosed me with severe bronchitis and a sinus infection and called in an antibiotic and cough medication for me. I picked it up and started taking it right away. Sure can't wait for it to start working. <BR> So sad since I really wanted to go with Richelle tomorrow for her ultrasound to ... Mon, 4 Nov 2013 21:14:45 EST Moov-ing in or moov-ing on? <img src=""> <BR> <BR> Although the freshman moved into the Waynesburg University in August, an unusual arrival appear on the college campus on Monday. A large black and white cow apparently wandered off a local farm and strolled onto the campus. The bovine apparently caused no harm to person or property, but its sighting prompted university officials to issue an email security alert, saying "It has been reported there is a cow loose... Wed, 9 Oct 2013 21:06:49 EST Fixing the Ranger brakes...maybe!?!? Ken and I have been replacing and working on the brakes on his Ford Ranger for the past two weeks. This week has been spent on trying to bleed them so that the back brakes are working. He has tried everything in the book and then some and it just isn't happening. Today we went to the parts store and bought a new tool that was supposed to help in these types of situations that they just got in this morning (according to them). We came home and Ken used it. After squeezing the handle twic... Wed, 2 Oct 2013 23:04:56 EST Update on happenings at our house I was finally able to get an antibiotic for my kidney infection. WHAT A TRAIN WRECK trying to get that accomplished. But glad I have been able to start them. It amazed me when those working in the doctors' office don't listen to the patients or pass the messages along. Just glad it is all sorted out. MISSION ACCOMPLISHED!!! The doctor was impressed that I have lost twelve pounds since I was there last month. <BR> I sure don't need more issues to deal with with my kidneys. <BR> My dear ... Fri, 6 Sep 2013 23:15:55 EST Update on my kidney biopsy Just wanted to update all on the results of my kidney biopsy. There was no sign of cancer! PTL!!! <BR> <BR> However they said that the only thing they could find was that I have diabetes and high blood pressure which is causing my kidney to throw protein into my blood stream. Well we all knew that I had both of those, so not sure that the biopsy proved anything. My doctor in Pittsburgh was hoping that it could be pinpointed so that there was something she could do before it got any worse. <... Wed, 4 Sep 2013 21:20:04 EST Last week was very busy... My week went quite well other than a few bumps. We buried my dad's last sibling (my aunt and his baby sister) on Wednesday morning. On Friday morning we left home at 4 am as I had to be at Cleveland Clinic for a biopsy on my kidney. They are trying to find out why my kidneys are throwing so much protein. I should have the results within the week. <BR> So glad that we had safe travels and happy to be home!!! <BR> Have a wonderful week!!! ENJOY whatever life brings your way!!! Be sure to tell y... Mon, 26 Aug 2013 22:24:49 EST Thank you!!! Thank you to everyone for your prayers and good wishes for Shannon. I will let you know what is happening as I hear it. <BR> <BR> Today was a beautiful day for my Aunt Cubbie's funeral and her service was very nice. I also was able to visit with many of my cousins that I haven't seen in a long time. We are planning a reunion so that we don't lose track of each other. <BR> <BR> I am emotionally and physically drained tonight, so I am off early and going to check on my pillow. lol!!! <BR... Wed, 21 Aug 2013 23:53:22 EST Update after Shannon's surgery... This is the current update on Shannon according to his wife, at 8:30 tonight.... <BR> <BR> Well we are finally home. Shannon is currently blind again and in alot of pain. We need to wait for the infection to clear up and then they will see If they can do another transplant. So for now all we can do is wait. I may need some help getting him to and from drs appointments. Thank you all for the prayers and kind words. <BR> <BR> He goes back to the doctor for a checkup tomorrow at 6:30 am....... Tue, 20 Aug 2013 22:49:32 EST Latest news on Shannon... It is going to be a long night. My nephew Shannon is having surgery at 9:30 tonight. Infection is too bad so the cornea needs to come out. I will update as soon as I hear anything. Please keep Shannon in your prayers. <BR> Blessings and hugs, <BR> Helen Tue, 20 Aug 2013 02:45:21 EST Update from our house...August 15, 2013 My kidney biopsy is scheduled for August 23. I have to be in Cleveland, Ohio at the Cleveland Clinic at 10:30 to do the prep work, with the biopsy scheduled for 11 a.m. Recovery room appointment with the doctor is scheduled for Noon. I will have to stay overnight before coming home. The biopsy is done by a radiologist with an ultrasound. The doctor says that I have not been diabetic long enough for the diabetes to be causing my kidney issues. My left kidney is enlarged also and they aren't s... Thu, 15 Aug 2013 22:33:34 EST Glad to be home from Cleveland, Ohio Thank you for your prayers and positive thoughts. We had a very blessed and safe trip!!! I however, have to admit that I really didn't find out much at my appointment. Not the doctor's fault because my doctor in Pittsburgh did not send him copies of my reports. I actually called Pittsburgh twice, the last time two weeks ago to make sure my records were forwarded to Cleveland Clinic and was told yes...done!!! However that was not true. The nephrologist at the Cleveland Clinic had nothing ... Tue, 13 Aug 2013 18:10:07 EST Headed to Cleveland Clinic.... I have to be up early in the morning as I have to be at the Cleveland Clinic. I have an appointment with my nephrologist at noon. It will be a second opinion as my nephrologist in Pittsburgh wants to do a biopsy of my good kidney after two years of horror stories about what could go wrong. Biopsy won't happen even if I get ten opinions....which is what I told Dr. Kaldos. But I will get a second opinion just because she insists that it will help me feel better. Don't think so. <BR> Hav... Mon, 12 Aug 2013 01:17:33 EST Great news!!! PTL!!! Ken and I went to Philadelphia on Tuesday as he had appointments at the Cancer Treatment Center of America. After his annual mammogram, blood work, and a breast exam, they said that he still is doing great and no cancer. Praise the Lord...he is now three years cancer free!!! <BR> They have moved his appointments to every four months!!! <BR> Hope everyone is having a wonderful week and will have a super weekend ahead. ENJOY whatever life brings your way!!! Be sure to tell your loved ones how... Sat, 10 Aug 2013 02:35:40 EST Update from our house... Everything is going rather well at our house this week. My blood pressure is doing great and remaining at a normal range. My weight is slowly going down. My doctors are very impressed. <BR> Tomorrow Ken and I will be going to the Cancer Treatment Center of America in Philadelphia as he has early appointments on Thursday. He is schedule for a mammogram and the doctor talked about him maybe needing a colonoscopy in the near future since it has been over twelve years since he has had one. H... Tue, 6 Aug 2013 23:57:18 EST THANK YOU!!! So sorry that there isn't enough time to thank each of you for reading and commenting on my blog. Thank you everyone for your birthday wishes for Richelle and prayers, good wishes and blessings for her little one! I have really worried as this is such a high risk pregnancy. Then I turned my worries over to the Lord and feel so much calmer now...after all, it is in His hands anyway. I am so happy that he has blessed them with this precious baby!!! <BR> <BR> Have a wonderful week and enjoy ... Tue, 16 Jul 2013 00:01:15 EST Happy Birthday, Richelle!!! Happy, Happy Birthday Richelle!!! (POOH_BEAR_69 on SP) It is so hard to believe that it was 34 years ago the Lord blessed me with my second beautiful daughter who was named Richelle after her father Richard. That Friday the 13th was very special for me and for her, I'm sure. She has been the delight of my life and continues to be a blessing to me and all who know her. She has been been truly blessed and is now dealing with a high risk pregnancy. They have been trying for quite a while t... Sun, 14 Jul 2013 00:20:19 EST Tidbits from our house... (edited) Tornado/thunderstorm warnings in our area as well as flood warnings/flood warnings. There is already a lot of flooding in our area from the storm that blew in this morning. Many of the roads in Pittsburgh and surrounding areas are closed or impassible. It is much better now than it was during the morning rush hour. I think they received over two inches of heavy rain this morning in less than an hour. Many business and homes are flooded and people were rescued in boats, etc. Praying f... Wed, 10 Jul 2013 18:54:40 EST What a weekend!!! It never fails that I can see God's great sense of humor and receive his many blessings!!! <BR> <BR> Ken and I went to visit my dear sister in Ohio yesterday...planning to spend the day and possibly the night. I was experiencing some pain in my right thumb. While helping her fix salads for a late lunch, the pain in my thumb was getting worse...but nothing I couldn't handle. I blamed it on the storm moving in and possibly getting some arthritis. We had a great visit. Ken started having p... Sun, 7 Jul 2013 22:58:15 EST AWESOME Friday at our house... I am so excited over something that to anyone else would be a minor issue. Ken was feeling better today and changed my kitchen faucet. I can now turn it off and on without any dripping. It had gotten to the point I could barely (and sometimes couldn't) shut it off. It has been dripping for quite some time and then turned into a tiny stream. We bought the new one before Mother's Day but with Ken's health issues, he hasn't been able to do it. <BR> PTL today when he couldn't shut it off, he... Fri, 5 Jul 2013 19:42:05 EST Blessings continue at our house... Praise the Lord that Richelle and Joe made it home safely last night. It was a day filled with prayers on my end. She told me they were almost involved in two accidents, but the Lord was watching out for them. Prayers continued....Thanked the Lord for his blessings also...the good and the bad. <BR> <BR> As we continue to get thunderstorms, today storms came complete with heavy rains, lots of loud thunder and hail. I told Ken that at least it washed the top of our motor home...something w... Sun, 30 Jun 2013 21:06:32 EST The thunderstorms continue... We are continuing to get severe thunderstorms. Mother Nature has a cruel streak. Our ground is so saturated that it can't hold any more water. We had rain so hard hard that people had to pull over on the interstate due to no visibility. Even the football field at W&J College was totally under water. Hail was larger than a quarter. It looked like snow/ice covering the ground. <BR> Ken and I went to Richelle's to make sure their pool was ok and their basement wasn't flooded. Everything w... Fri, 28 Jun 2013 23:14:14 EST Severe thunderstorms in our area. Take precautions. Under severe thunderstorm warnings with high winds. I will try to get back on and blog later. Must get away from all windows until after 10 p.m. Stay safe if you are in the path of these storms. <BR> Blessings, love and hugs, <BR> Helen Tue, 25 Jun 2013 19:30:14 EST Father's Day weekend Ken and I had a wonderful Father's Day weekend!!! Friday night Richelle and I went to In-Motion Dance and Fitness Dance Recital. The dancers did an AWESOME job!!! <BR> Saturday we went to a delicious lunch with Richelle and Joe at Apple Annie's in Point Marion, PA for an early celebration. We celebrated early so they could spend Father's Day with Joe's family. After church on Father's Day, Ken and I went to spend the day with Kenny...Ken's oldest son. Picked up some things he needed f... Mon, 17 Jun 2013 21:54:52 EST