Jan 31, 2011

Some Great Times:)

Gratitude is the memory of the heart.

I have been very fortunate to have had my mom and dad visiting us in Florida for a little over a month.  Everyday with them will be forever cherished.  I was able to spend lots of time with both my parents but, even more with my mom doing "girl" things even if sometimes it was only having a cup of coffee together.

Every moment I spend with them is a memory that I will forever cherish...I will always be grateful to them for all they do for us....and for everything they keep doing for me.  My parents are one of a kind and I know that without ever having to say a word they are always there for us.

Mom and dad are now gone and I already feel that emptiness.  Having them around has been wonderful.  I was lucky also to have been able to be around and not have to go anywhere while they were here...made it even better...

As my mom and dad were leaving my mom said the nicest thing to me...she said “A Daughter is a Little Girl who grows up to be a Friend”  Truth be known is when you grow up the relationship with your parents becomes one of the greatest friendships of all times.
I will never get tired of telling the world what a lucky person I am.  I have wonderful parents to whom I will forever be grateful to:)  While we try to teach our children all about life, our children teach us what life is all about...another thing my parents said to me.

We tend to forget that happiness doesn't come as a result of getting something we don't have, but rather of recognizing and appreciating what we do have.....

until next time...

Jan 27, 2011

Sisters A Forever Bond:))

Having a sister is like having a best friend you can't get rid of.  You know whatever you do, they'll still be there......

Do you ever realize that all of a sudden and for no reason you get the blues?  Just happened to me and I can't pin it down to anything specific.  Arvid and I are having a great time just chatting and making plans when all of a sudden i realize I am missing my sisters and not just one of them but all 4 of them.  A sister is a little bit of childhood that can never be lost.  How do people make it through life without a sister?

The 5 of us:)
 My sadness could be because I was looking at some old pictures of when we were just little girls with not a care in the world.  Today we are all grown up with lives and families of our own...sometimes I long for those days when we were so innocent and our only care in the world was........NOTHING!!  When sisters stand shoulder to shoulder, who stands a chance against us?

All of my sisters live in different parts of the USA and Puerto Rico.  Makes it very difficult to see them at times but, we try and we do our best to try and see each other at least once a year.  A sister is a forever friend and I am missing them...I know some sisters who only see each other on Mother's Day and some who will never speak again.  But most are like my sister and me... linked by volatile love, best friends who make other best friends ever so slightly less best.

my sisters)
As children we grew up being very close and the bond we had then is still as strong as ever and as the years go by I find that my sisters are also my best friends...No matter the distance that separates us in my heart you are all close to me and I love each and everyone of you....and I would do anything for you......A sister is a gift to the heart, a friend to the spirit, a golden thread to the meaning of life and lucky me I have 4 of them...

.....TO MY SISTERS.....

I'm blessed to call you sister,
I also call you friend;
You've loved me unconditionally,
And stood through thick and thin.

You've shared my joys and sorrows,
My laughter and my tears.
You've been my inspiration,
As we grew up through the years.

When we were little children
We laughed and played together;
Then growing up you stood by me,
Through good and stormy weather.
There's something God has given us,
That's more than family;
He's placed a love for you, my Sister,
Deep down in the heart of me.

Allison Chambers Coxsey

Sisters is probably the most competitive relationship within the family, but once the sisters are grown, it becomes the strongest relationship.....

until next time...

Jan 24, 2011

Horrible New Trend: Cosmetic Toe Surgery.

He who is born a fool is never cured......be happy. It's one way of being wise...

We all have parts of of bodies that at some given time we would really like to change or at least we think we do....but imagine if for every little "imperfection" we start to snip here and there....this world would be made up with even more "freaks" than it already has.

Here is something that caught my attention.  I ask myself " WHAT NEXT"

Cosmetic surgery is constantly on the rise, with new, untapped parts of the body up for potential restructuring. Toe surgery is the new trend, or more specifically, helping women's feet look pretty in high heels, and let them wear high heels more comfortable. This has become a $45 million a year business.

pretty in heels:)

 One woman named Audy was embarrassed that her second toe was longer than her big toe, and yearned for a procedure to make her toes conform to what she considered ideal. "All the girls are wearing cute high heels, open toes and they look pretty, and me—I have to wear always closed shoes because I feel like they're staring at my long toe," Audy told ABC News.

like everyone I also love heels:)
 Podiatrist Ali Sardine in Beverly Hills, California., actually offers toe shortening procedures for up to $3,000, and they sound as awful as you'd imagine. They must dislocate the toe, saw out a small chunk of the bone, and then insert a titanium rod to hold the shortened toe together. This seems gruesome, and painful, and like the perfect surgery for an insecure person with too much money. Really, who even looks at your toes?!

Several other feet surgeries are growing in popularity as well. There's the pinky toe tuck, where fat is removed from the littlest piggie to make it narrower and able to fit into more pointy shoes. Another procedure involves liposuctioning fat from a patient's belly and injecting it into the balls of their feet to act as a permanent cushion when wearing high heels. Double yuck.

The American Podiatric Medical Association and officially and the American Orthopedic Foot and Ankle Society (AOFAS) are both strongly against cosmetic foot surgeries because of the potential risks and complications that may accompany them, like permanent nerve damage, infection, scarring, chronic pain, not to mention the feet reverting to how they were pre-operation.

I can't understand the appeal for all these surgeries...first there is all that pain involved..YIKES!!  then not to mention all that $$ for some procedure that no one will even notice....sounds just crazy and plain stupid if you ask me....just wear the heels...they look beautiful and no one cares about your toes:)  Everyone's busy checking out the legs and the heels...trust me I know:)

 My advise is  use that money on something constructive...be it a nice down payment to a home, a vacation but something that will leave you feeling rejuvenated.....and with a sense of accomplishment.  No one cares if your toes are misaligned:)...Ask yourself this question: will this matter a year from now?"

always happy:)

Being happy doesn't mean that everything is perfect. It means that you've decided to look beyond the imperfections......so don't worry be happy:)

until next time....

Jan 21, 2011

If You Want To Be Happy, Be...

If you believe that feeling bad or worrying long enough will change a past or future event, then you are residing on another planet with a different reality system.....

Just when I think I am adapting nicely to living in a house in Tamarac something happens and then all of a sudden I miss the Grand or more like it, I miss living in a condo.

Arvid and I have been looking at a few condos the last few days with some pretty amazing views...yes water all around.  It is then that I realize all over again how great it was to be where we were and to have everything just within minutes of us...nostalgia settles in but only for a minute or so....because I then realize what a good life we have.

I am trying very hard and honestly I am doing really good.  We have a beautiful home...but sometimes you just can't help feeling the way you do.  There are days when I wake up feeling OLD! 

It will pass that I know....it HAS to because this will be home for us in Florida.  I also know that we have a good life, with a home in the Bahamas sitting right on the beach and another home in Chicago waiting for us....which also has a great view.

This last month has been actually very good living here because mom and dad are so close by.  Soon they will be leaving and it is already making me sad.....On the other hand, soon we will have Arvid's family visiting so that will be good as well.  Always good to have family around:)

Today my mom and dad and my good friend Liliana came over for lunch at our place.  I have been looking forward to this very much because Liliana has not been here before and she is curious to see where Brutus now calls home.

It was a very brief but we sure had a great time.  No one stayed longer than 4 hours and that was perfect.  We enjoyed each other's company, had good food prepared by my mom and yours truly.....Two glasses of wine each for my mom and Liliana and that was more than enough to put them in a good mood.  A few drinks for my dad and Arvid and next thing you know they were telling stories again. 

It was a perfect afternoon lots of laughter and with good company.....brief but very relaxing and enjoyable:)

If you want to be happy, be...happiness often sneaks in through a door you didn't know you left open...

until next time....

Jan 17, 2011

My Little Brutus -- A Heartbeat At My Feet

What greater gift than the love of a cat? ......

Today started out like any other day..quite a few thing to do and one of those was taking Brutus to the vet for is regular check up.  Nothing unusual about that.

I text ed my friend Liliana that I was taking Brutus to the vet and she immediately wanted to know if the "baby" was all right.  She loves him as much as we do I think.  Not only was she concerned but she insisted on meeting us at the vet just so that she can see Brutus.  Gives me an opportunity also to see her:)

Everyone at he vet knows Brutus goes with us all the time to the Bahamas so when we arrived they just looked at him and asked "how's the traveller"?

He had his usual exam and was touched and petted everything he likes until of course came the shots.   All was going so good with his exam until the doctor examined his paw.  It was completely swollen and oozing blood.  We  pay so close attention to his every move and the fact that we missed this makes me feel so guilty.  Like as if I were a bad mom to Brutus.  Even Arvid was a bit concerned that he did not notice it:(

He's had his antibiotics and is now resting close to us.  I am still feeling really terrible for not seeing the paw....poor kitty must be in a lot of pain.

The doctor said it may be an allergy to his food so now I will have to try and change his diet.  Anyone who has a pet especially a cat knows how difficult it is to switch them to another food once they have decided on the one they like.  Have to give it a try and hope for the best.  For me, one of the pleasures of cats' company is their devotion to bodily comfort.  A famous quote:  " My husband said it was him or the cat...I miss him sometimes." .........

I love cats because I love my home and after a while they become its visible soul...our home would NEVER be the same without Brutus....

Jan 15, 2011

Child Abuse????...:(

Child abuse casts a shadow the length of a lifetime.....
The only reason why child abuse is alive today, is because we as adults fail our children when we fail to listen to them. Listen to a child today!.....

I have been tossing and turning in bed for quite a while now. The other day Arvid and I were out having lunch and I witnessed something that has left me feeling depressed, angry and inadequate. Inadequate because I saw what happened and I did nothing. Now I feel so guilty and wonder what will happen to that little boy.....

While having lunch we saw a mother with her kids they were all having lunch but, the mom was busy doing something on her phone. Texting probably. One of the kids asked the mom something while she was "playing" on her phone. The mom turned around and just shouted at him like as if no one was there......as if he was no one.  She said and I quote "what the hell is wrong with you can't you see I am busy?" "Get the hell out of my sight right now".

I will never forget the look in the little boys eyes. It swelled up with tears but not a teardrop fell. It broke my heart there and then. All instints told me I should say something. For you see now that I am thinking of it, what I witnessed was child abuse. OK so she did not hit the child...but, do you know that words hurt forever and that you can never take it back once said. I was laying in bed thinking what did this child do to deserve such harsh language from the person who is supposed to cherish and protect him? What?

I have no kids but I will tell you, this is not the kind of behaviour of a mother.  What if this goes on regularily? WHERE IS DAD IN THIS PICTURE????

I have 4 sisters and they all have children and I will be the first to tell you that if I should ever witness any of them treat their child like that I would never stay quiet. Never. What can be so important that you can't take a minute to listen to your child? Why do you have to speak to them in that language? For a child this is probably going to leave scars forever....I remember because I was a child once and once my dad told me to be quiet......this was nothing bad but that stayed forever with me. It broke my heart then and when I think of it I think of the little girl I was it still breaks my heart.  Imagine this little boy....who says "hell" to a little kid?? WHO???

What do you think this will do to this child?

As far as I am concerned this is child abuse in it's worst form. Please if you witness this behaviour do not do what I did. Do not stay quiet. I regret not saying something to that mother even though it was none of my business. I lay thinking of that little boy and wondering what else goes on behind closed doors.
For those of you with children please watch what you say before you say it. Your children are precious gifts you were blessed with so why abuse them. I would have done anything to have a little one of my own and I would treasure him/her every single day.

The next good thing to having kids is that I have wonderful nephews and nieces. I love each and everyone on them like they were my own children and if I were to ever know they were being mistreated by their parents or someone else I would definitely say and do something.....so to each of my sisters I ask do you recognize any of these tendencies in you? Do you find that sometimes you are so tired you forget your words and maybe...just maybe hurtful things come out of your mouths?
To all parents out there PLEASE be more aware of what you say to your child...the look in that little boy's eyes will haunt me for a very long time......

I will end by saying...."if you witness this behaviour speak up otherwise you are just as bad as the person/persons perpetrating the behaviour"......

Child abuse casts a shadow the length of a lifetime.....

until next time....

Jan 12, 2011

Having A Ball:)))

Enjoy when you can, and endure when you must....

my mom:)
OK so I am having a great time with my parents visiting here in Florida and best of all of course is that they are staying so close to us.  I am so happy we have the Fur House....had it not been the case I doubt we would have them with us for so long:)

My mom and dad are very independent people.  Almost everyday they are out and about doing their thing.  I am just happy to know that I can visit whenever I want...not that I do because they also like all of us, like their privacy.

My dad is the type that is just a people person.  On his second day here he introduced himself to all the neighbors....now they are all friends.  There is Les, Pam and of course Gloria and some others I don't even know.  They all love my dad because he talks to them everyday:)

As I was visiting today, in pops in Gloria...a character is all I can say.  She just came in like a tornado, sat, invited herself to lunch and then invited us all to a party at her place next week:)

I am really enjoying having them around and knowing I can just pick my mom and go shopping, or to breakfast, have a cup of coffee just anything.  My dad does not care to do all of this so he is happy to stay in and watch cricket.

 I even told Arvid that I do not wish to go anywhere while my parents are here because it is not that often I see them anymore....he was OK with that!!  YEAH!!  I even convinced him to postpone our Eleuthera trip because I wish to go to my uncle's birthday party.  He said OK!!!

What else is there to say?  Life is good..enjoying having my parents here.  We even had a few friends from Norway here last weekend and it was a very good time.  Everyone is always so very kind and nice and it comes so easy to be the same to them:)   Kindness is something that we must own and extend to ourselves, before we are able to extend it to others. When we do this, we do not determine whether someone deserves our kindness ... it is simply something we do because it has become our nature to be kind....

Time you enjoy wasting, was not wasted.....

until next time...

Jan 9, 2011

10 Foods That Can Help You Sleep:)

If you can't sleep, then get up and do something instead of lying there worrying.  It's the worry that gets you, not the lack of sleep....sometimes I stay up so late that I have my morning coffee before I go to bed

OK everyone, if you are like me, I bet you find that sometimes you just can't fall asleep no matter what you do.  I just read an interesting article and thought many of you may benefit from it.

I can highly recommend the tea...have had it and it relaxed me...sleeping comes easily after that:) Yogurt is also a favorite of mine plus it is a tasty snack at any given time:)  Enjoy:

Advise from the experts:

Trying to get more shut-eye? Take a look at your diet. Eating the right foods in the hours before you hit the hay may help you fall asleep faster, say experts, and even improve the quality of your sleep.

Almonds:  They contain magnesium which promotes both sleep and muscle relaxation, and they have the added benefit of supplying proteins that can help maintain a stable blood sugar level while sleeping, and help promote sleep by switching you from your alert adrenaline cycle to your rest-and-digest cycle.  Try this bedtime snack: Have a tablespoon of almond butter or a 1-ounce portion of almonds to help your body relax.

Tea:  Yes, avoiding all caffeine in the evening hours is key, but some decaf varieties can help get you into sleep mode.  Chamomile tea is a very helpful and safe sleep aid.  Green tea is another good choice. “Green tea contains theanine, which helps promote sleep. Just be sure you get a decaf green tea if drinking it at bedtime.

Miso Soup:  Miso contains amino acids that may boost the production of melatonin, a natural hormone that can help induce the yawns. Bonus: Research shows that warm liquids like soup and tea may also relieve cold symptoms, helping you sleep better when you're feeling under the weather.

Banana:  Worried about falling asleep tonight? Have a banana before bed, Bananas are an excellent source of magnesium and potassium, which help to relax overstressed muscles. They also contain tryptophan, which convert to serotonin and melatonin, the brain’s key calming hormones. Try this tasty and incredibly simple bedtime smoothie: Blend one banana with one cup of milk or soy milk (and ice, if desired). Pour and enjoy!
Dairy:  Yogurt, milk and cheese do contain tryptophan, but also have a surprising sleep-inducing nutrient:  Calcium is effective in stress reduction and stabilization of nerve fibers, including those in the brain. That means a serving of your favorite Greek yogurt before bed can not only help you sleep, but also help you stop worrying about the weird thing your boss said earlier at work.

Oatmeal:  Oatmeal is warm,soft, soothing, easy to prepare, inexpensive and nourishing. It’s rich in calcium, magnesium, phosphorus, silicon and potassium—the who's who of nutrients known to support sleep. But go easy on the sweeteners; too much sugar before bed can have an anti-calming effect. Instead, consider topping your bowl with fruit, like bananas (see above).

Hard-Cooked Egg:  If you have trouble staying asleep at night, it may be because you didn’t eat a pre-bedtime snack high in protein, or perhaps your snack was too high in simple, high-sugar carbohydrates, like cake and candy. “The problem with simple carbs is that they can put you on a ‘sugar roller coaster’ and drop your blood sugar while you're sleeping, causing you to wake at 2 or 3 in the morning... A better bet?  Eat an egg, cheese, nuts or other protein-rich snack instead, so you can not only fall asleep, but stay asleep.

Edamame:  Craving a salty snack before bed? Turn to lightly salted edamame, especially if you’re dealing with menopause-related symptoms. The natural estrogen-like compounds found in soy-based products can be very beneficial in controlling those nighttime hot flashes that can disturb your sleep.  If it’s crackers and dip you’re craving, try making this easy edamame recipe: In a food processor, blend together 2 cups of shelled, cooked edamame with 1 tsp salt, a drizzle of olive oil and 1 clove garlic (optional) until smooth.

Cherries:  Oddly, a glass of cherry juice may be an effective way to fall asleep faster, says a team of researchers from the University of Pennsylvania and University of Rochester. In their study, they found that cherries, particularly tart cherries, naturally boosted the body’s supply of melatonin, which helped people with insomnia. While the jury is still out on how much juice or how many cherries are needed to make you sleepy, experts say sipping a glass of cherry juice (available at most natural foods stores) or having a serving of fresh, frozen or dried cherries before bedtime couldn’t hurt.

Cereal:  There’s no need to feel guilty about having a small bowl of cereal before bed, especially if it’s a low-sugar, whole-grain cereal. Not only is it a healthy snack (make sure you top it with milk to give your body the protein it needs), but it may also help you snooze. Top your bowl with a sprinkling of dried cherries.

If you are like Brutus sleep will never be a problem:) but since we are not all fortunate to be able to fall asleep in the wink of an eye hopefully some of these foods will help us....

until next time...

Jan 7, 2011

Dangers Of Social Networking...

Social Media should improve your life, not become your life....it's not what you know but who you know that makes the difference....

Websites dedicated to social networking represent a growing phenomenon. With the explosion of sites such as Facebook and MySpace, unforeseen dangers have started cropping up. 

Last night on TV we saw a show that has left me thinking very seriously about all the dangers involved with these different Social Networking sites...now I am trying to figure out a way to reduce my risks yet still enjoy all the fun and enjoyment I get from these sites. My favorite is Facebook:)

logging on to my FB account:)
Like almost everyone else, I have a Facebook account a Twitter account and some others I don't even remember.  I will have to admit that Facebook has re-united me with friends and family I have long  lost contact with....it's a good way to make connections with people with similar interests and goals.  For me the benefits have been good and the pleasure or connecting with friends from long ago surpasses the dangers...that is until what we saw last night. 

 Basically what we saw were people using these social networking sites to stalk, mutilate, murder and commit unforeseen acts of violence.  In particular one man was tracking and stalking young women just by using the information they (she) posted on her status updates.  Don’t say anything online that you wouldn’t want plastered on a billboard with your face on it.

Like everyone using these social networks, I will be the first to say I am also guilty of doing this...but after seeing what I have seen and of reading about it in the news and hearing from friends the dangers involved, I will definitely try to be less visible.  Not post on my status where we are and all to those details I see so often on Facebook of people telling their every move.  Way too easy for a "crazie" person to track you and god knows do what!!!

How to Stay Safe:

Evaluate your social networking account and postings—how do you feel about your employers seeing what you have posted? How about your parents or grandparents?

Do not post private information, including your cell phone number, home address, class schedule, social plans, etc. unless you are prepared for anyone to find you/track you down, any time of the day or night. Do not post anything that might be embarrassing to you in a potential employment situation. People have been denied work because of information found on social networking sites.

Be prepared to answer questions about your social networking page or other social account in job interviews. It has become common for interviewers to ask applicants, "Are you on a social networking site?" and "What is on your profile?" Be prepared to either decline the question or answer honestly because employers will most likely look at your social networking account themselves… if they haven't already.

Most important, use common sense.  Remember it is not only you involved but the ones you love also.  If someone wants to get to you the easiest way is to get to you through your loved ones, be it your children, spouse, parents, pets, etc....

To all my loved ones, friends and families please be careful what you post.  Be careful with the pictures you post of your children...too many perverts out there.....you do not have to discontinue using these sites but, just learn to be more cautious, selective and aware that not everyone out there has good intentions.

Personally, I have had quite a few perverts sending messages and suggestions....not really people I befriended.  I have played around with my privacy settings and have hopefully made myself less accessible to unwanted attention. 

Utilize the "Privacy" settings on your Facebook account—you can adjust your privacy settings so as to control who has access to your personal information. It's better to be safe than sorry:)

My overall experience has been really good.  As mentioned before, I have connected with friends from high school, college, family members and I have also made new and wonderful friends all because of Facebook.  Thanks to Facebook my sisters business really took off...so it has lots of advantages.  One must just learn where to draw the line.

Would I recommend Social Networking Sites?  Yes, I would but I would caution everyone to be careful with what information you put out there.

Regardless of what may be the hot social media property of any particular month or year, social networking has become a core part of our daily lives:))

It is a thousand times better to have common sense without education than to have education without common sense, it is instinct, and enough of it is genius.....

until next time....

Jan 4, 2011

Best Wishes To All:)

 Nobody can go back and start a new beginning, but anyone can start today and make a new ending.....

Hope everyone has had a great beginning so far to 2011.  For us it has sure started out great.  We have closed on all of our houses and we are about 98% done with all the work on ours. 

Count your blessings everyone and not your problems.  Be thankful for all that you have even though at times it may not seem worth it.   There are many people in this world that would probably give anything to be in your shoes right now.  As someone said life is not measured by the number of breaths we take, but by the moments that take our breath away...

I am thankful for the little things in life that make me happy and for what I can do to help make the life of others better:)  Remember it isn't what you have in your pocket that makes you thankful, but what you have in your heart.

mom and dad:)

I am happy because my parents are visiting and will hopefully be in Florida for a while.  It is always nice to see them.  We spent New Years Eve together with my mom and dad and we brought in 2011 with them.  Afterward Arvid and I came home and spent some time with Brutus, had a celebration drink of our own and then had our very first dance of 2011. 

All and all not a bad way to start the New Year.  I have everything I could want in life.  A wonderful husband who is also my best friend, friends and family I can always count on and not to ever forget the joy of my life...BRUTUS. 

In a little over a month Arvid's family will also be visiting so that is also always good.    

So far it has been great and I hope it continues to just get better and better for us and for all of you:)   Remember that sometimes tough times are there so you can have a good time later on-- and really appreciate it...

Success is not the key to happiness. Happiness is the key to success. If you love what you are doing, you will be successful....

until next time...