NANCYPAT1's SparkPeople Blog NANCYPAT1's Blog on SparkPeople, home of free diet plans and a healthy living community Sliding into home plate Three weeks of work. Classroom, Ed's "man cave" , my woman cave, the dining room turned pantry, and my bedroom have all been cleared, cleaned and rearranged. New mattress is on my bed and I love it. I still have the spare room to do and to go through the Christmas stuff and re-box it in plastic storage boxes instead of cardboard. Ed is working on the kitchen and his bedroom next week. The place looks totally different and much roomier. We shampooed carpets and upholstery and removed all... Tue, 28 Jun 2016 18:44:18 EST Tantalizing, terrific, thrifty, thriving Thursday Tuesday and Wednesday were days when I didn't get much reorganizing done. Tuesday, Ed insisted on getting me out of the house. He said he didn't like that I have not been having any fun yet this summer. I tried to tell him that my organizing IS fun AND relaxing. He felt bad so took me out for lunch and we went shopping. Yesterday, I called my niece who is the mommy of my precious Claire who is 21 months old. I was just calling to chat but she asked Ed and me to go out for lunch. We tried a... Thu, 23 Jun 2016 17:51:37 EST Magnificent Monday Making Meaning Laughing about how we impact those around us. My decluttering has gone viral in my house. Ed surprised me yesterday by making strides on HIS clutter too. I didn't ask him to do it but I came home and found he had three bags of stuff he threw out and another two of stuff to head to be donated. <BR> <BR> We also discussed some ideas to create a more usable space for the two of us. Our life has changed a lot since we first moved in together. When we first moved in together, our life was di... Mon, 20 Jun 2016 12:50:04 EST Sumptuous, satisfactory, scintillating, spectacular Saturday Okay, that may be stretching things a wee bit, but it feels that way despite the lingering sadness over my precious Gray-C dying. I know it sounds a little ridiculous to say how I feel. Before you say it isn't, let me explain. When someone you love slowly deteriorates over a long time and you are sure they are dying soon, BUT they don't, it starts to feel as if they are going to "beat the odds" and live forever. Then when they die suddenly, it is a shock. I felt it when my father became b... Sat, 18 Jun 2016 22:09:48 EST Final farewell for furry family member fresh tears Forever fighting for balance. My gracious Gray-C passed away this morning. She snuck outside last night and we found her dead this morning. She was deteriorating for the past year or so and I think she didn't want to die inside. Ed and I buried her and planted flower seeds on her grave. She was fifteen years old but I will really miss her. I am trying not to let this drag me down. She was my baby and I know I will miss her. <BR> <BR> Remember to make your life the one you are meant to li... Fri, 17 Jun 2016 11:23:33 EST Wonderful, whacky Wednesday wishing wisdom would work with whimsy My darling son Ed decided we should go out for lunch today. He wanted to look at cars to see what options might be available in our price range. He has been working sanding and sealing a friend's deck and stairs and had a few dollars in his pocket to treat me. We went for Chinese food. It is one of our favorite places and we both managed to eat relatively healthy - mostly veggies, fruit and chicken. Our fortunes seemed particularly relevant as mine said something about getting upset only i... Wed, 15 Jun 2016 19:14:14 EST Making Monday matter most - magically make miracles from mistakes Monday often is a time either for complaints or exaggerated energy. Both can be mistakes on the journey to success. You might wonder why. <BR> <BR> First let's deal with the complaint piece. Negativity is draining and saps your strength and multiples your misery. Making minute changes in attitude can bring immediate improvements in your life and the lives of those around you. The more complaining and grumbling you do the less likely you are to make REAL progress. You start to think you ar... Mon, 13 Jun 2016 15:27:14 EST Brought a smile to my heart today. I found out that my great niece's father in law died on Thursday unexpectedly. He was only 52. Ed and I went to the funeral home after church. My niece cried when she saw us because we are the only family in the state. It was so sudden, they didn't even think anyone from her side of the family would be there. Then, her husband came over and said how much it meant to him. The way he said it made me cry. He told me that at times like this, you need to look for reasons to smile and seeing me w... Sun, 12 Jun 2016 20:37:19 EST Better mood today - smiles and joy back where they belong Woke up this morning in a more reasonable mood. I suspect that being over tired and worried dragged me down yesterday. Today, we went and picked up a rental car for Ed. Then we did some shopping and split up after a quick lunch at Arby's. I tossed half the bun and enjoyed a junior roast beef sandwich. Ed headed to the shop where his car was and cleaned it out. I stopped at half a dozen different stores and walked around and enjoyed some ME time. Didn't buy much but did get raspberries for... Sat, 11 Jun 2016 17:39:32 EST Warning - venting blog - just need to let off steam without hurting anyone else This is one of those things over which I have no control...furthermore it is literally just an accident and nobody was hurt. . . BUT, for a moment or two, I just want to SCREAM. My darling son Ed was helping a friend a couple of weeks ago and broke our weed whacker. Yesterday I bought a new one and today he went to help her again. This time he wrecked his car and broke the wheel off a truck in a head-on collision. Oh, and it was his fault and he got a ticket that will cost several hundred do... Fri, 10 Jun 2016 20:22:53 EST Wow, last year five days - this year two days - classroom put to bed for the summer Actually, it was much easier than last year because of the efforts my son Ed and I invested last year. Ed helped me three days and I worked a full week. This year he helped half a day today and I spent two full days after the last paid day. Shredded three bags this year and more than a dozen last year. I also discarded about six bags of trash compared to dozens last year. <BR> <BR> I feel so free. My big goal for the rest of this month is to purge my house of a lot of excess "stuff", aft... Wed, 8 Jun 2016 20:06:18 EST Sitting alone in my classroom in the quiet School is over, the kids are gone, most of the teachers, aides, cooks, etc. are gone, the school is a bit eerie. I like the feel of it, but there is a sadness that lingers. There are echoes of the joyous voices during the last week of school. There are remnants of projects completed and graded. There are some marks on the walls, dents in the washer, and scuffs on the floors. Our custodians will have the marks removed, the dents undented, and the scuffs polished off before we return in Augus... Mon, 6 Jun 2016 12:07:43 EST Denouement - The Aftermath of the School Year Student's last day was Friday. End of the year ceremonies tomorrow, starting with Prayer at the Flag Pole at seven and then back to my classroom and packing up, purging, prepping for next year. Then, summer may start. Another year of major changes as neither of this year's aides will be with me. The good news is that my best friend and aide I have worked with for twelve years except this year, WILL be in my room. Good chance that it will be different next year but this year turned out to be... Sun, 5 Jun 2016 21:12:03 EST May maybe magnificent if only my head and my heart and my students make it possible I am convinced I can make it through the next week or so, but no amount of juggling, loving and planning seems to be letting that happen. <BR> <BR> My trip to the amusement park was really nice. My student and I agreed that if I wouldn't push him to ride the roller coasters, he wouldn't object to my .taking breaks to sit down in the shade when I needed to. We walked a lot and rode about half a dozen rides (train and boat, and such). We had a great time and the entire trip was nice. Only real... Sat, 28 May 2016 16:41:11 EST Wonderful weekend working with whimsy I am spending time with my books and gospel music on. I love this channel, only ads are for the musicians and groups playing so I can absorb it without having the troubled world intrude. It is free channel on my Dish TV - The Gaither Music channel - 276 (a paid advertising channel) but it blesses me. Some of the shows are OLD, some current and everything in between. Elvis, Tennessee Ernie Ford, Alabama, Statler Brothers, Mark Lowry, and dozens more. <BR> <BR> The injuries continue to be so... Sat, 21 May 2016 23:37:35 EST I thought APRIL showers brought May flowers - NOT more miserable rain We have had about 25 out of the past 27 days of rain, even some SNOW on Sunday morning. Midmorning, today we went out as a class to see something NEW and amazing in the sky above - first there was this blanket of blue and then there was a shiny yellow thing and a VERY few fluffy white cotton balls up there too. Still pretty chilly when we went out but we were afraid to wait until later because it might be a figment of our imagination or something. It was heavenly. Thu, 19 May 2016 12:04:49 EST Spring Break and a breather Spring break is here and I am taking a much needed breather.I am not sure I would have made it through one more day much less a few more weeks without this break. No school work, no homebound students, nothing except recharging my batteries and playing catch up on home and family. <BR> <BR> Last couple of weeks were rough. Some of my students get VERY anxious around holidays and their behaviors escalate. My aides get short fused and I have a ton of extra demands without the pressures th... Sat, 26 Mar 2016 17:01:44 EST Spring Break and a breather Spring break is here and I am taking a much needed breather.I am not sure I would have made it through one more day much less a few more weeks without this break. No school work, no homebound students, nothing except recharging my batteries and playing catch up on home and family. <BR> <BR> Last couple of weeks were rough. Some of my students get VERY anxious around holidays and their behaviors escalate. My aides get short fused and I have a ton of extra demands without the pressures th... Sat, 26 Mar 2016 17:01:43 EST Middle of a Friday Another week down and the weekend rapidly approaching - finally figured out my schedule for the next few weeks - school M-F until 3:30, Tutor student A from 3:45-4:45 M-F, Student B from 4:45- 7:45 M,W, and Student C from 5:00-7:00 T, TH, and F. Wasn't sure how I was going to be able to fit them all in and I CAN'T and WON'T do it beyond Christmas because I will definitely burn out completely. <BR> <BR> I put on some weight over the Thanksgiving holiday (about 5 pounds) but am halfway back... Fri, 4 Dec 2015 11:41:32 EST Just a few minutes of me time It has been months since I have blogged - school started and then WHAM. . . school REALLY took hold. It has been a challenging year for me and I have been doing a second job - doing homebound instruction for several students who cannot come to school. The money is nice, the hours leave me weary and the students are EXTREMELY challenging. I don't mind so much the ones who are aggressive especially because they come with LARGE, usually MALE staff who remain in the room while we work, however... Tue, 1 Dec 2015 12:01:02 EST Middle of the day - break and lunch I am already having a great week. I go to the dentist for a cleaning on my bottom teeth and for him to check out the new teeth. I don't expect any surprises. So far I have been able to eat such interesting things as CORN ON THE COB, a NUT bar, and a peach without cutting it into slices - It has been at least 15 years since I BIT into a piece of fruit without slicing it up. I am also not having any pain so it will be nice when the bottom teeth are shiny clean too. <BR> <BR> The students h... Tue, 25 Aug 2015 12:00:30 EST Unbelievable change in ME I just stumbled upon some pictures we took two days before I started my dental work. I then snapped some photos - totally impromptu and without dressing up or anything of today with my teeth. I knew I looked better, but I was TOTALLY SHOCKED at the difference between the two sets of pictures. I haven't been able to transfer them from my Kindle to my computer yet so I can't show them to you, but I literally wanted to cry from how much different I look. I didn't realize how DRAMATIC the cha... Sat, 22 Aug 2015 20:27:21 EST End of DAY ONE - and teeth are installed Had a wonderful day today - got up very early because I couldn't sleep. Got online and then headed to school. When I got the kids off the bus, there were only 4 of my 6. Two of the most challenging students were absent today. The other kids were amazing. They liked the changes I have made to the room. They were enthusiastic about the new Ipads we will have this year. They were really excited about the cooking that we will be doing this year. The aides were great with the kids and quit... Tue, 18 Aug 2015 20:37:48 EST Just a quick blog I am up early and have to leave soon for the first day of school for the students. I feel like I am more prepared than I have been in several years. I am a little disappointed that I wasn't able to get my teeth yesterday. They fit great when the dentist tried them, but he removed them and made some adjustments and then could not get them back into my mouth. We are both hopeful that he will be more successful today. I have decided that everything will be okay and that this year will be am... Tue, 18 Aug 2015 06:19:08 EST Vacation - where did the time go? It seems like yesterday we were on vacation in North Carolina but actually we have been home for a couple of weeks and I have been through a lot of mouth work. From feeling and looking like I had been hit in the face with a baseball bat to a dull ache has been an improvement. Today I went to church and was greeted with open arms. Sadly one of my favorite parishoners was not there because he got his arm stuck in a hay rake (one of those BIG claw-like machine that is used to rake and bale ha... Sun, 26 Jul 2015 23:24:27 EST Rainy Days sometimes get me down . . . but not today. It is pouring rain and they have flood warnings out for our area and t-storms are expected but I am in a really good mood this morning. <BR> <BR> I shoulda, coulda, woulda known that there would be a letdown after school was finally done for the year - it has basically taken another whole week to get rid of the leftover exhaustion. I woke this morning feeling better and a bit more energetic. I have been resting and swimming, and not accomplishing much of the long list of "t... Sat, 27 Jun 2015 10:14:13 EST Where has time gone? Why didn't I notice when it went flying by? I am just checking in to let everyone know I am here. The excitement of the end of school is starting to slip away a bit, now the complete and utter exhaustion of the year is setting in and I am recharging my batteries. I am not DOWN, just taking time to allow myself to catch up with myself. <BR> <BR> After purging my classroom this past week, I am hoping that instead of wishing my next year away and struggling to keep my head above water, I will be able to be PRESENT in my life. I am try... Sat, 20 Jun 2015 06:55:58 EST A good and joyous morning to all Today is my REAL beginning of summer - school was out a week ago, but I have been very busy. Finished up decluttering my classroom around noon yesterday. Since school got out, I have been thinking more clearly, relaxing and making a great deal of progress on a number of life projects. <BR> <BR> I FINALLY went to the eye doctor and am getting new glasses BUT my eyes are otherwise in good shape - no retinopathy or signs of high blood pressure damage etc. Check off THAT one. <BR> I went to th... Fri, 19 Jun 2015 08:58:25 EST A new breeze is blowing and changes are on the horizon My internet has been funky for the past couple of months, I have been able to get on briefly but between slow, unreliable and sporadic internet, I have also been doing everything WRONG in my life. No, I am not talking about overeating (although there has been some of that), I am not talking about failure, lack of exercise, or even DOING or NOT DOING any THING particularly bad, just EVERYTHING IN MY LIFE HAS BEEN UPROOTED, OVERTURNED, and DISCOMBOBULATED. <BR> <BR> So, what have I done WRO... Sat, 13 Jun 2015 08:32:34 EST My busy, happy life is filled to the brim I am doing pretty well right now but seem to be hustling and bustling a lot. Ed has been going to church with me and I like that. After church, I go to spend time with Claire and today I started babysitting instead of just visiting. Jilly (Claire's mommy) made a yummy quinoa and chicken casserole for our lunch. Today my darling son Ed even held Claire and let me take his picture with her. He took some photos of me with her also. I will probably post them when I get a chance and he has ... Sun, 9 Nov 2014 21:58:59 EST What a wonderful day for the saddest day of my year Today was the 8th anniversary of my son Michael's death. It is always a difficult date for me. Even when my other son, Ed and I don't talk about it and don't consciously recognize the date, our bodies and our minds leave us just out of sorts. Today Ed couldn't sleep and was just not feeling quite right - then he looked over my shoulder and saw me mention Michael in a post and he said, "Oh, no wonder I couldn't sleep last night and couldn't sleep today either!" He has been up for more than ... Wed, 8 Oct 2014 23:46:23 EST Seems like my blogs are a monthly event - I may be OLDER . . . BUT . . . I have had an incredibly filled month - lots of doctors' visits for my son, lots of computer issues, two new great nieces born since my last blog, lots of just feeling tired, a couple of out of state trips. School has been going strong and really well. I have turned into a senior citizen and now am officially on Medicare and have NO PLANS to slow down even the tiniest bit. <BR> <BR> I started this school year worried and concerned because EVERYTHING seemed to be changing and I was feeling ... Sat, 27 Sep 2014 22:50:07 EST Labor Day and time for a LABOR OF LOVE It is time to make a labor of love toward myself. It is a new day, a new week, and a new month and as a teacher, kind of like a new year as the school year has just started recently, but more importantly for me, September is always my NEW YEAR's resolution time. My birthday is later this month and it seems to always be a time of making plans, making changes, making a difference. I see my new year as the time to start anew with a clean slate and a fresh attitude. <BR> <BR> The past year ... Mon, 1 Sep 2014 01:13:50 EST HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO MY SON ED My son was born 47 years ago today. In fact, I just looked at the clock and exactly 47 years ago, I was just being handed my darling baby boy for the first time - he was born at 1:35 p.m. and now it is just after 2:00 p.m. He has brought me such great joy, so many tears, and has taught me so much. He has grown and changed and developed into an amazing man. I still remember the baby I held back then. <BR> <BR> I remember the chaos he brought into me world. I remember the JOY most of all... Sat, 23 Aug 2014 14:21:01 EST 5 down - 175 to go The first week of school is over and I am still alive. It is always a stressful time, changes are continuous and whether good or bad, they mean adjustments, chaos, and stress. BUT . . . . . . <BR> <BR> if all of that weren't enough, THIS week my darling son Ed had doctors' appointments on Monday (first day of school and I got to drive 3+ hours each way to his doctor and home well after 10 p.m. although I was up and moving by 5 a.m.), Tuesday (another early day but I was so exhausted by the... Sat, 23 Aug 2014 14:02:37 EST The wonderful weekend blessings This week was a LONG one - first of all, I had to get up EVERY day and go to work - that may not seem like much but summer has barely started - not even time to unplug my battery charger on my life - still in the getting used to feeling relaxed mode. Then my son had doctors' appointments that interfered with my own schedule and we had a lot of juggling to do here and there. The financial fallout from my fiasco with my brakes is still hitting hard and so is the emotional fallout from the who... Sat, 16 Aug 2014 16:58:11 EST Take a risk Tuesday Today is Tuesday, time to take a risk on YOU. Yesterday I spoke of making a difference on Monday. Today is Tuesday and in keeping with the alliteration concept take a risk on Tuesday. Do you think you can? Of course you can do anything you set your mind to, especially if you put a little bit of ACTION behind the thoughts. Do you think you can NOT? Well, maybe you can't but you will never really KNOW unless you take that risk and try, because you definitely WON'T if you don't try at all.... Tue, 12 Aug 2014 07:11:57 EST Make a diference Mondays Today is the start of a brand new week. It is fresh, undamaged, and unpolluted so far. <BR> <BR> Today is a day that can make a difference. Make a decision to make today marvelous, miraculous and meaningful. The type of week you and those around you have can be CHANGED by the choices that you make about how you are going to face your week. Recently, I have been a little stressed. I have been feeling overwhelmed. I have been forgetting one of the most important rules for success in any ... Mon, 11 Aug 2014 08:34:29 EST EVENTFUL DAY with SUPER HIGH HIGHS and SUPER LOW LOWS Yesterday my day started EARLY (3 a.m.) Woke up and had breakfast and was in the car by about 3:45. We drove ONE hour to pick up my step-nephew and THEN headed out to Arlington Cemetery. The trip was about 150 miles - why leave so early?? when we had to get there at 8 a.m. ? Well, we rural dwellers consider a dozen cars HEAVY TRAFFIC and only see that once in a blue moon. Normal rush hour traffic for me means waiting for 1-3 cars go by to let me get onto the MAIN road - once in my entire... Thu, 7 Aug 2014 13:45:02 EST Frinally Fiday It has been a looooooooooooooooooooooooongggggggggg week and the chaos is about ready to begin in earnest. <BR> <BR> Yesterday my son and I left the house at 5:30 a.m. to head to his 3 doctor's appointments. He had EMG. EEG, CTScan, and surgeon appointment. Net result is that he needs to have injections before they will cover the surgery that both he and the surgeon agree will NEED sooner or later especially since he is in constant pain BUT that insurance seems to think are necessary to... Fri, 25 Jul 2014 12:59:45 EST Just a quick blog to say GOOD morning all Have a wonderful and truly blessed good morning. If it is raining and you wish the sun were shining, maybe you can find something wonderful about the rain. It is watering our crops, making the fresh fruits and vegetables of summer tasty and healthy. If it is blisteringly hot, and you wish it were cooler, maybe you can remember how bitter cold you felt last winter when it seemed the cold would never go away. How you view the day will affect how your day unfolds. <BR> <BR> Make today spect... Sat, 19 Jul 2014 08:21:11 EST The MAGIC formula for successful weight loss and complete health I wish I could fulfill the promise of such a formula but the bottom line is that for each of us the formula is personal, unique, and varies over time. <BR> <BR> There are a few things that are common in most of these formulas but even the most common ones are NOT ABSOLUTES. The frequently spouted formula that "calories out MUST exceed calories in" is not a guarantee of either weight loss or a consistent amount of weight lost. The magic of the FITBIT and/or other exercise and calorie tool... Fri, 18 Jul 2014 22:58:55 EST Time to LIVE each day fully and joyfully This morning I woke up and my first thought was that the summer is more than halfway gone already. As a teacher, I work my contract hours and many more during the school year and then in the summer, I work harder on my health and well being - especially focusing on my mental health and well being. Well, seeing my summer slip away immediately brought a moment of anxiety to me. It almost drew me into the trap of rushing to comfort foods, anxiety and robbing myself of a potentially wonderful ... Thu, 17 Jul 2014 10:53:29 EST Sunday Morning Musings I am up early this morning and getting ready for church. I had the urge to put some words down on a blog. Sometimes when I wake early, I am inclined to want to ramble a bit, but more often, I am rushing around trying to get things accomplished before leaving. This is one of those less rushed mornings for me. My cat Gray-C was waiting by my bedroom door for me to open it and feed her. She is faithful and waits patiently (or when I sleep a little later, IMPATIENTLY) for the door to open an... Sun, 13 Jul 2014 07:35:54 EST It's been a while and I have a few things to blog about During the summer, there is rarely anything dramatic happening in my life and my world. I close in upon myself a bit, I reflect, I spend time in the pool, and I chill out to allow my mind to rest and my body to heal. I have been exercising quite a bit and spending long hours in the pool. I feel like summer is rapidly fading already and have my moments of wishing it would go on longer and also wishing it was time to get back into the school routines. The funny thing is that I often personi... Thu, 10 Jul 2014 09:59:05 EST My FATHERS' DAY Blog Wow - the last time I blogged was for Mothers' Day. I am usually more regular with my blogs but I guess I have been not in a blogging mood. On Mothers' Day, I wrote about some of the "Mother figures" in my life. I talked about how many of the women I came in contact with mothered me, mentored me, and helped to fill different voids in my life. In contrast, for Fathers' Day, there is only ONE man that ever filled that bill. I had a father in law when I married my first husband, but as much... Sun, 15 Jun 2014 19:25:07 EST Mothers' Day and the blessings of my mothers I have been truly blessed to have a number of very special mothers in my life. <BR> <BR> My own mother, Florence was one of the most gentle but strong women I have ever known. I used to think my father was "the BOSS" when I was a child. He always seemed to have the final say about whatever was being decided. Then, one day a friend looked at me and laughed. He told me to look a little closer - my father was "the BOSS" because my mother CHOSE to let him make the final decisions whenever ... Sun, 11 May 2014 19:51:27 EST Wonderful wistful Wild World-changing Wednesday Each day is a new opportunity to change the world around us. We can make a difference if we choose. Our life is filled with choices - Do we choose to smile or frown? Do we eat a candy bar or a piece of fruit? Do we forgive or hold onto grudges? Do we make the most of what we DO have or complain about what we don't have? Do we care for our friends and family or do we turn away? Each of these choices helps us to create and weave a life as unique and special as we are. Each of our choice... Wed, 7 May 2014 06:49:05 EST A new week unfolds - maybe my week started yesterday Yesterday was a really nice day overall. Started with a healthy breakfast, meditation, and some quiet time. When my son Ed woke up, we went to the library and then started out on our monthly shopping trip together. We decided to take a scenic drive to the "BIG CITY" and it was beautiful, relaxing and really a treat (before gas cost a fortune, we used to drive just for the pleasure of it - can't afford to do that often now). <BR> <BR> We were smart enough to eat before we shopped - not g... Sun, 4 May 2014 21:57:30 EST It's ONLY Tuesday and already it has been a LONG week Yesterday my precious student whose last day was supposed to be Friday was picked up by his mother. She told me that she would NOT be taking him out of state and that instead he would be staying with his father and they would live in the house that she and my student have been living in. I feel for her but I am REALLY overjoyed that he will be staying in my room and that he will not be moving. Then, yesterday I was also told that the residential facility that had been closed after abuse al... Tue, 29 Apr 2014 21:08:03 EST