NANCYPAT1's SparkPeople Blog NANCYPAT1's Blog on SparkPeople, home of free diet plans and a healthy living community 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 Strange day filled with emotional ups and downs I just feel like I am on a yo-yo bouncing up and down and all around. On my job, I am really disappointed to be losing the student who has made such progress and who is such a kind and gentle soul with joy and spirit. But more than that, it will leave me with a class of ONE student who is very challenging and who is much more difficult to understand or work with, AND with two aides who really will not have a lot to do if I only have ONE student. I am worried about whether I will even have ... Thu, 24 Apr 2014 22:19:26 EST Very short blog today Had a relatively uneventful day today - peaceful and quiet. I did however get some distressing news and am probably going to cry before long. My quiet, peaceful, and mischievious student is moving out of state and I am going to REALLY miss him. He is always smiling, gentle, kind, and loving toward everyone and not a behavior problem ever. He is human enough that he gets stubborn once in a while but never mean or aggressive and he makes my day brighter just by running off of the bus each d... Wed, 23 Apr 2014 15:39:36 EST A new week spread out before me today I am starting a new week with a fresh clean slate. There are really no leftover duties from last week in front of me. It is time to start anew and move forward with joy and determination. I have continued to struggle with eating, sleeping, pain, my son's pain, and a lot of other things that have been shaking my world "tree" that grounds me. I worry that these hurricane force winds that are shaking me may rip my up by my roots. I KNOW this sounds dramatic and I don't like to let negativit... Mon, 21 Apr 2014 14:12:42 EST He is RISEN today - He is Risen Indeed Today is EASTER Sunday. It is an important day for those of us who are Christians and it brings such a wonderful message of HOPE, LOVE, and GRACE. It was a nearly perfect day for the first time in years. The temperatures were mild - mid-sixties. The sun was shining. There was a baptism for our newest member who was born February 3rd. The church was full. Most Sundays, our procession is the pastor and me - I serve as acolyte and chalice bearer. Once in a while there is a third person b... Sun, 20 Apr 2014 20:08:29 EST Being nice was REALLY HARD today My day started with a positive note. My son Ed decided to get his blood work done for his doctor's appt. next week and was told the results of his culture came back and he had a staph infection but NOT NOT NOT MRSA. Then we went to his pain clinic appt. - turns out they only did an evaluation and he has to go back on Tuesday for yet another evaluation by another doctor - I was REALLY annoyed but not overly surprised about it. <BR> <BR> We then went shopping and I found TWO beautiful bat... Thu, 10 Apr 2014 21:32:34 EST Midweek ramblings I woke up this morning and had a little extra time. I decided to get on and respond to messages, meditate, eat a wonderfully healthy breakfast and start my day with joy and peace. I wish everyone had such luxury. I don't have many luxuries but the ability to take a few minutes to start my day without being rushed or harried. <BR> <BR> My sister called last night and we had a nice chat. I got to the pool and had a good workout. I also had the luxury of reading a while before heading to b... Wed, 9 Apr 2014 06:37:47 EST So, what are you going to do about THAT?? I woke up this morning and didn't want to get up. I didn't want to go to church, or to the pool, or even to get out of bed. I didn't want to write this blog, I just wanted to curl up under the covers and hide, crying into my pillow. I KNOW, I KNOW, it has been 7.5 years since my son Michael left this Earth and went to his heavenly home. I KNOW that is a long time ago. I KNOW that he is in a better place, BUT . . . This year it just hit me particularly hard. Maybe it has to do with Helen... Sun, 6 Apr 2014 15:18:41 EST April Fools are not the only ones who make foolish choices Sometimes we all make fools of ourselves - ironically, those who think they don't are the very ones who are most likely to be doing so on a regular basis. Sometimes my foolishness is to ignore the things I know and allow my mind and body to slink into a corner to curl up and pretend to die. Dying doesn't come that easy, I mean as an escape from troubles, challenges, difficult decisions, or even just plain weariness. Death just isn't a REAL answer to any of those challenges or hassles. Cur... Tue, 1 Apr 2014 22:34:29 EST Saturdays and Springtime Spring is here according to the calendar and the weather is warmer although it is a gray day with rain and clouds. Springtime is also about a feeling that the sap is running through my veins and through my muscles. I can feel a sense of hope starting to spring up like a well within me. <BR> <BR> Today, I have already completed my college classwork for the day and am starting to get moving slowly. <BR> <BR> I have been listening to a really interesting message on weight loss and health... Sat, 29 Mar 2014 13:35:55 EST Survived a long week - happy to be home Nothing much to add to the stories of the past week. It was long, it was full of activities and challenges. It was also full of love and sadness, joy and peace, excitement and frustrations. I am going to try playing some more catch up with all my correspondence and work on my college classes. I plan to go to the pool tomorrow if I have the energy and enjoy myself. Church on Sunday possibly followed by a second weekend pool session. I might even have time to read some - Soon March will be... Fri, 28 Mar 2014 17:27:01 EST Just a moment of peace and serenity Yesterday was an amazing day. It snowed a lot in the morning but still no accumulations - BUT a 45 car accident that prevented our pastor from getting to the service - 2 people died. Our pastor ended up in a ditch, got his car out of the ditch and then got tied up in the BIG accident for hours. Fortunately, the family was able to get to the chapel and the service was beautiful. We almost froze to death by the time we got into the building because the winds were really strong and gusty. ... Thu, 27 Mar 2014 22:14:27 EST Chaos reigns when I try to exercise too much control I got the MINIMUM done on my college classes - waited until this morning and got up early since I fell asleep about 8:30 but woke up about 4:30 so I was fresh, relaxed and could actually think. <BR> <BR> Both aides were back today but the kids were wound up because it snowed all day - never amounted to much of anything but was pretty steady but melted on contact with the roads, sidewalks, and only accumulated a bit on the grass. Kids don't care about accumulation as much as the fact it i... Tue, 25 Mar 2014 18:13:20 EST Not the best start for a fresh new week . . . Both my aides were absent today. Both had sick family members and had to take the day off. Both subs were new and today was the first time either had worked in my class - meaning that my students didn't know them. <BR> <BR> They did okay, but one of the students with autism had a rough afternoon and they brought the kids back to the room before lunch was finished - meant I had 15 minutes for MY lunch. They also brought the kids back to the room in the middle of my planning period. I wa... Mon, 24 Mar 2014 18:51:02 EST Finally Friday - one of the longest weeks so far - they come often - LOL I am so happy that the weekend has finally arrived. I don't know when I have been so happy to see a Friday. This week has been really challenging, starting with a foot of snow on Monday - water problems that sent kids home on Wed. and delayed their arrivals on Thurs. - still no drinking water, showers, or such because the town pump broke - they managed to get it fixed so there is enough pressure to flush, but not much more. I had 4 IEPs and a trip to a doctor's appointment with my son that... Fri, 21 Mar 2014 22:31:08 EST Back from long day - GOOD NEWS Back home from surgeon visit for my son Ed. The surgeon wants to wait at least 4 months to decide whether to do surgery or not. He thinks that a pain management clinic MIGHT be able to help him and could possibly push surgery off for a year or maybe more. He wants to see Ed back in 4 months after he starts treatment at a pain clinic. I feel as though an ENORMOUS weight is lifted off my shoulders right now. I pointed out that I had been VERY WORRIED and could not see how I would have been... Thu, 20 Mar 2014 15:01:09 EST School will be at least 2 hours late starting tomorrow I won't be there but we were already notified that there would be a 2-hour delay due to continued water issues. <BR> <BR> Geez - this is the most bizarre school year in recent memory. <BR> <BR> My darling son and I will be leaving about 5:30 in the morning so I may not get online until we return home. <BR> <BR> Everyone have a blessed day and pray that this rain does turn to freezing rain and leave the roads dangerous. <BR> <BR> Be blessed and bless all around you. Wed, 19 Mar 2014 21:37:43 EST Would You Believe?? Would you believe that when we got to school today, we were told that there were water problems - they dismissed the kids 3 hours early - don't know if they will have school tomorrow or not. We teachers have to stay even without the kids - it is a bit disgusting that the toilets don't flush and we had kids until noon. Hopefully they will let us go soon. <BR> <BR> At least I got today's IEP completed before time for students to leave. <BR> <BR> Just taking a minute of my lunchtime to whine... Wed, 19 Mar 2014 12:58:38 EST Long day - productive but exhausting I started the day just a little bit off-center. Went out to leave for school - my darling son Ed ALWAYS cleans off the car when it snows, ALWAYS, except for this morning - he had not even brushed the snow off the car - I wasn't angry because he certainly doesn't HAVE to do that, but he ALWAYS does, so I was stuck brushing a foot of snow off my car before I could leave - it made me a bit later than usual (not late for school, but late for my NORMAL time), then I got behind a teacher from the ... Tue, 18 Mar 2014 21:54:17 EST Digging out - school tomorrow?? We had a total of a foot of snow - it is St. Patrick's Day for heaven's sake - LOL <BR> <BR> No school today and I took it as a lazy day and spent most of it reading and walking about around the house. Did my strength training using bands. Not like being in the pool but better than nothing. <BR> <BR> I have IEP meetings all day tomorrow and am ready for the first one but not really ready for the others. I have difficulty working on them from home but will go in early if we have school t... Mon, 17 Mar 2014 21:26:44 EST Lovely weather for MID-WINTER Weather forecast said snow BUT that it would start as rain around 8 this evening and the temperatures would be in the 40s and drop around midnight and the rain might turn to snow. HAH!!! Snow started around 2 the afternoon. Temperatures rose to a high of 32 and are already dropping and NO, it is NOT midnight yet. Ground is covered and so are the roads. Accumulations expected between a dusting and more than a foot - they are SOOOO accurate with those too. Who knows how nasty it will get ... Sun, 16 Mar 2014 17:25:34 EST Saturday - productive morning and POOL all afternoon I had a terribly long week and this morning am getting a little extra sleep - some may not recognize that as productive, but believe me, it IS PRODUCTIVE - slept about 2 hours longer than normally do. Got up and did my SP routine and am almost done. Next step is to work on my college classes and then onto IEPs when I am a bit more awake and really awake. After lunch, I plan to head to the pool - son Ed will go to the fire department for their raffle - my ticket will get him in to mingle an... Sat, 15 Mar 2014 09:28:18 EST Long tiring day today Woke up in the middle of the night - 2 a.m. - fell back to sleep around 4- back up again at 5:30, moving slowly because of the cold temperatures today - after 70s earlier this week, and with super high winds, it felt colder than some of the REALLY cold days. <BR> <BR> The day dragged all day and it seemed unlikely that I would ever get a moment of peace. I stayed late and worked on my college classes where it was quiet and I was able to concentrate. Came home and at 8 p.m. I am ready to ... Thu, 13 Mar 2014 20:19:00 EST Saturday - gray but warmer Today started with a note from my son on my bedroom door telling be the heat went off during the night and that he had a call in to the HVAC man. Like, I REALLY needed another bill - anyhow, he arrived late afternoon and fixed the problem and it was NOT terribly expensive, but a minor problem. <BR> <BR> The weather has warmed up for the weekend with temperatures in the high 40s and low 50s - gray and cloudy day but still warm enough that the temperatures didn't drop too much and I didn't f... Sat, 8 Mar 2014 18:45:11 EST Marching to the beat of a different drum I have gotten lazy about blogging. I don't like to preach = sometimes I do that when I am passionate about a subject. I don't like to whine - sometimes I do that when life is kicking me while I am down. I don't like to become negative - sometimes I do that when I am angry, hurting, or just frustrated. What I do like to do is be upbeat, positive, focused, and to impart knowledge, lessons learned, and interesting and useful tips in a fun, humorous, and positive way. So today, I am going to... Sun, 2 Mar 2014 21:08:58 EST It has been a long time I have not been in a blogging mood lately. There have been a lot of ups and downs and all arounds in my world lately. I had a nasty fall and am using a cane to walk and dealing with lots of muscle spasms and pain. I have had about as much SNOW as I can take - it seems to snow nearly every day and Thursday into Friday, we got more than 2 feet of the white stuff, today is snowed again and we got about 2 inches more, tomorrow, Monday and Tuesday are all expected to bring a bit more snow with ... Sat, 15 Feb 2014 23:26:47 EST Home from celebrating Helen's life We had a wonderful celebration of my stepmother Helen's life today. We were surrounded by loving family members and church family, and the entire ceremony and service and luncheon were WONDERFUL and filled with love, laughter, tears, and more of what we would expect from our truly loved and loving friends and family. <BR> <BR> My brother Vic spoke and he took a lovely and very different way of approaching the "memories" portion of the service - in fact when he was done, EVERYONE simply said... Sat, 1 Feb 2014 17:35:09 EST Overwhelmed I just learned that nobody from my side of the family will be able to attend. My cousin was certain to attend but called saying he couldn't make it. I will have Helen's family there, I will have Ed, I will have my church family, and friends so I don't understand why I suddenly feel so weepy. I can't stop the tears and I feel as though my heart is broken. Sorry for crying on your shoulders, but all of a sudden I feel like (to steal a phrase one of the women at church uses in joking but als... Fri, 31 Jan 2014 21:55:06 EST Friday morning I am up and getting ready for school. It is likely that we will have a normal day today = first one all week. It is supposed to get WAY up in the 30s today and even above freezing for the first time in ages. <BR> <BR> My (step)brother and SIL and I have been talking every night - we have become super SUPER close. My stepbrother Buddy who is still dealing with colon cancer will be coming home this weekend. He is still very weak and if the tests next week go well, the surgery to reconnec... Fri, 31 Jan 2014 05:45:07 EST Today is Wednesday I am sitting here, up at my regular time but expecting a 2-hour delay that was called last night, I decided to get on and respond to msgs. and huddle, and do trivia - then THE call came - NO SCHOOL again today. Today I plan to venture out and spend much of the day in the pool. Hate to use the gas and the cost of gas but my exercise and relaxation time is necessary too. I would have paid for the gas to go to school so I am heading out shortly. <BR> <BR> I finally posted on Helen's death on... Wed, 29 Jan 2014 08:04:34 EST