Mar 31, 2016

A Friend Like You..ANNA

There are some people in life that make you laugh a little louder,
smile a little bigger and live just a bit better...ANNA

We met during one of the most difficult times in our lives. Some 20 years ago back in California.
At the time I had just lost my first husband, Paul Michael Riley in a motorcycle accident.
My friend Anna had just lost her mother to cancer.  Just a terrible time for us.

Dr. Multani was his name.  The psychiatrist that was recommended to me.  I went there 
with no expectations.  I was not open to listening to him or anyone telling me what  
was wrong.  I knew what was wrong and no matter what anyone said, it would 
not change the fact that Paul had died.  Nothing would nothing did.

As I walked into the reception room, I saw another girl there.  As devastated as I was.  
Tears rolling down her face.  Unstoppable.  We met under these circumstances. Tragedy
 brought us together, but the bond we formed surpassed all of that.  It brought 2 souls in need
of comfort and of friendship together.  Anna did for me what no psychiatrist was able to do.

We talked.  We cried.  We laughed, and so began a friendship that is stronger today than ever.
I left California with my 5 cats.  Anna was there with me through it all.  The night I 
left California the Santa Ana winds were going crazy.  It seemed not the best way to
 start a new life, but with Anna talking to me throughout all of it I happened.

Our friendship has had its test and it has survived many a not so good times, but through
it all we survived and every time the bond we have just grows stronger.  When I left 
California, I gave her my plants.  When I saw her last October, those plants were
thriving.  Looked even better than when I had them.  Brought me to tears.

We have been there for each other through many a difficult times inn our lives. She is
my lifeline during this hard period of my life.  Not a day goes by that she does not send me 
some comforting message, a call or some other thoughtful thing that is typical for Anna.

When Brutus died, she sent us 2 cards.  I cried even more.  For losing him and because 
I have such a special friend.  I just thank my lucky stars for having her in my life.
Again I ask myself, what have I done to deserve such a good person in my life?

Life has taken us through many different paths.  Not always easy.  I know this is how it is
for so many of us.  Difficult times show us who our real friends are.  Difficult times teach
 us lessons that will forever become part of us and of the person we evolve into.

I sometimes wish life was easier not only for me and Anna, but for so many I know, and for
those I don't.  Someone said, you were given this life because you are strong enough to live it.

To my friend Anna, wishing you always the best life has to offer.  Your luck needs to
change soon.  You have gone through to many a rough times, and I know it is now
 time for Anna to see some of the goodness in life that she gives to others.

Thank you Anna for being my friend and for sharing my journey through the good,
 and not so good times in the last 20+ years.  Here is to us and to many more
 years of friendship.  May our journey continue on until the end of time.

Many people will walk in and out of your life,
but only true friends will leave footprints in your heart.

Walking with a friend in the dark is better than walking alone in the light.
Friends are the family we choose for ourselves...


Mar 30, 2016


Whenever you feel down and discouraged just tell yourself
that things will get better.  Keep believing in yourself...

It's only Wednesday, yet it seems like time has just stood still for the last few days.
  Long days.  On the bright side, yesterday I treated myself to lunch at one of my favorite 
places, and in the process enjoyed having some time at our old stomping grounds in Las Olas

 Also I had a long over due haircut.  I honestly don't know anyone with as much hair
 as mine.  My hairdresser always thins it out taking away lots of the bulk, but even she 
admits that she still thinks inhale more hair than anyone she knows and this is 
after me getting it thinned out.  Very unmanageable at times.  But now it feels
Lighter and for a little it will be easy to maintains. At least I hope so.

Sniffer is becoming more and more adjusted to us and we to him he really is a godsend,
 and we love him.  Sniffer reminds me that there is still a lot of love in us and he demands it. 
 We are just happy to oblige. Arvid is good.  I think he watches too much, but he says it relaxes him. 

Yesterday the day ended on a dark note (weather wise), but it was still beautiful.  Today it
 started our very ugly, but hopefully it will clear up and we may even get some sunshine.
  Strange weather.  Lots and lots of rain.  Flooding in many places in Florida right 
now.  Not fun at all.  On the other hand it is warm and will stay warm.

Today our youngest grand daughter turns 1 year old.  She lives in Norway, and we only
 get to see them in the summertime.  Looking forward very much to that.  Vanessa is a
 gorgeous little baby girl and together with her sister Aleah they have made us happy.

Happy birthday to our little Vanessa.  May all your days be good ones and just
know that you are loved beyond words.  See you all very soon baby girl.

Happy Wednesday everyone.  Remember every
 new day is a chance to change your life.

Wake up.  Smile and tell yourself: TODAY is my day...


Mar 29, 2016


It has been a terrible.  No good.  Bad day.
My mom says some days are like that...

I have had a very emotional day yesterday. By evening I was drained. Exhausted and just
 about all cried out.  Yesterday I finally met with Liliana.  I have not seen her since 
Shadow died.  I was not ready.  Honestly I was not even sure I was ready to do it 
yesterday, but like everything I do it was just a spur of the moment thing. 

One minute I was making lunch next thing you know I was texting Liliana asking her 
if she had time to see me today.  I got to her apartment.  It felt like we were strangers. 
 I got in and we just looked at each other not many words were exchanged.

 The next half an hour all you heard were two people crying. Crying like there was
no tomorrow.  Crying over Shadow, crying over a friendship that had been put through 
the worst possible test.  Every time I think o have no more tears I surprise myself. 

 I guess the body knows best for the tears came and for half an hour it never stopped. 
my face since Brutus died is puffy. Dark circles under my eyes and always a
puffiness and hollowness that I am sure will never go away.  I will never be the 
same person I was. I swear I have aged 10 or more years.  Feels like it.

I guess no one ever is the same person after they go through the loss of a loved one.
  After the tears all I could ask was how?  How could this happen?  Didn't you hear him cry? 
 Didn't you?  Was there any blood?  Not sure why  I ask this,  but it keeps bugging me. 
 Liliana said he looked like he was sleeping. Like an angel.  My Shadow hated the heat

More tears and they never stopped. My little Shadow.  Never made it to 10 months of life.  
We had him not even 4 months.  For both of us this has been hell.  Liliana is living
 her own hell. I live with mine.  Here neither of us are winners.  We both grieve 
for the same kitty.  I saw a woman destroyed. Like me devastated and
completely grief stricken.  At that moment all I could do was comfort her. 

 She is after all my very good friend. One I trust with my life and would still trust with 
another kitty.  Arvid and I disagree here.  People may judge me.  Truly I don't care. 
 For no one knows Liliana the way I do.  She is one of the most  kindhearted
 persons I know.  I am angry and hurt, but that does not change who she is.

 She would never ever harm an animal. She would rather hurt herself than cause hurt 
to an animal.  She's broken hearted. I think together she and I will benefit in the 
healing process.  For now it's baby steps for us, but I know one day our
friendship will be the way it was before. Maybe better.  Who knows?

I woke up sad.  Thoughts of Shadow and Brutus are haunting me.  It kills me to 
know that Brutus and Shadow are gone forever.  My Brutus.  My baby I will never 
hold him ever again.  An Shadow i will never make him his chicken ever again.  Right now
 I don't feel so good.  Took a walk to the beach to see if it helped, somehow today it did not.

No matter what, life does not stop.  It's in constant movement.  Looking out of 
my window right now I see a beautiful day in the making.  I'm sure 
it will get better for me as well.  To all a very good day.  Remember 
that to judge a person you first have to walk in their shoes.  

Don't judge people.  You don't know what kind of battle they are fighting.
You may think you understand, but you don't.  Not until you know the whole story...


Mar 28, 2016

Monday...Will Get Better

Grief can be the garden of compassion. If you keep your heart open through everything, 
your pain can become your greatest ally in your life's search for love and wisdom...

Hope everyone has had a very good weekend and a great Easter.  Our weekend was good,
 and for the first time in months Arvid and I were able to sit out in the sunshine and enjoy
 our Sunday outing.  One of our favorite places for a Sunday outing is Houston's.

 Right on the water. Boats passing by and definitely one of our favorite meals in town. 
  Yesterday we relaxed and we just sat and enjoyed the view, sunshine and
 each others company for a long time.  Was just a perfect outing.

On Saturday we went to St Pete for another trade meeting. As always we had a good time. 
We took quite a few items with us to trade and both Arvid and I promised ourselves 
to not come back home with them. Good news. We traded all it.  Of course we 
brought back other stuff with his. Arvid loves to trade for lots.  Came home with
 a few of these as well. Over all quite a productive and excting time

Sniffer was very happy to see us.  Wendy watched him on Saturday.  It was his first time 
alone.  I have say he did pretty good.  Life is good with Sniffer, but in my quiet
 moments my thoughts go to my Brutus.  Yes.  I miss him very much.  

I don't cry like I did before, but my heart aches for him.  My Brutus.  He will forever be 
my baby and I miss my baby so very much.  Shadow!  The wild one. I'm heartbroken over him.

My day started out really good, but it suddenly took a downward turn.  I will have to meet 
with Liliana withing the next few days.  Just thinking about seeing her right now set off a panic
 in me.  Yes, shes my friend.  She has a good heart and all that, but...  There is that but.

It's Monday again. A new week begins.  With every new day comes new healing. 
That my friend Anna always tells me.  Anna, my friend for over 20 years. 

The days go by mostly smoothly.  Sniffer is a true godsend into our lives, 
but I'm still dealing with my own demons. Hopefully one day it will be better.

Hope your day and week is a great one.  I'm sure mine will be better as the days go by.
Happy Monday all and to my many friends with birthdays today, ~Happy Birthday~

The trick is to enjoy life. Don't wish away your days, 
waiting for better ones ahead...


Mar 26, 2016

Hello From St. Pete...

I choose to be happy today...

Greetings from St. Petersburg, Florida.  Beautiful day here today.

Friday night was not so bad after all.  I enjoyed it very much.

Arvid, as I have always mentioned is a Trader.  You can say it's his job, and at times
it takes us to many different places for trade meetings.  Today is one such day.  I also have
 a good time at these meetings, and at the same time i also enjoy a few hours on my own.

I usually either go driving around the beach, sometimes I go to the mall, but no matter 
what I always end up meeting up with Arvid and the other traders for a few hours.
We both enjoy this quite a lot.  It's not for everyone, but for us it's perfect.

A reminder to all and to myself.  Be happy not because everything
 is good, but because you can see the good in everything.

Happiness is not the absence of problems,
 but the ability to deal with them...


Mar 25, 2016

Happy Friday...

You don't always need a plan.  Sometimes you just need to
 breathe, trust, let go, and just see what happens...

Friday.  What shall we do today?  So much has changed since Brutus died. We have 
been staying in more than we have been going out on a Friday night. Life changes in a blink
of an eye and so does a person.  What used to be so important suddenly seems so frivolous.
Truth is I really don't care to go anywhere that much.  I feel good being home as well.

Home with Arvid and Sniffer.  A very good feeling; one that has been missing
 for so very long.  Like I have said before, Sniff Sniff brings out a peaceful feeling in me.

Yesterday we went to the Swap Shop.  More like to the fruit market at the Swap Shop.

I stocked up on all of my favorite fruit.  Then Arvid and I went to the Norwegian
store where we also got a few things for Arvid.  Both of us ended up happy.

Yesterday was a weird day as far as the weather goes.  Dark.  Gloomy.  Sunshine.
We had an errand that took us to West Palm Beach.  The weather was not the greatest, but
 at least it was not raining.  On on way back home we were hit with a torrential of rain,
 thunder and lightening.  Took us forever to get home.  Arvid was driving and the
visibility was almost zero.  Pretty stressful drive, but of course we made it
 home and Sniffer greeted us.  Suddenly all was good again.

Friday.  The weekend has started.  I have promised Arvid to treat him to lunch today.
Hopefully there will be no rain and we can sit out somewhere by the water
 and just watch the boats go by and enjoy some quality time together.

To all a Happy Friday and a good start of the weekend.

Happy Friday everyone.  Forget all the bad things
you've encountered this week and have a great weekend...


Mar 24, 2016

One Of Those days...

I'm either going out for ice-cream or to commit a heinous crime
I'll decide in the car.  So watch out...

I was never a coffee drinker.  I started to do so in my thirties.  My first husband died, and 
next thing you know coffee was my best friend.  Oh and so was food.  When bad
 things happen in my life I have the tendency to eat.  Many people I know do 
just the opposite.  They stop eating.  Me I gain weight and from that 
day on I started to drink coffee, more than I should.

Now when I feel a "panic" coming on I have a cup of coffee.  That's what I'm doing
 right now.  When my mind wanders there is too much in there, and the calmness I was 
experiencing suddenly changes into something more devastating.  I stop take long 
deep breaths and bite my lips.  Many times it helps and I feel OK again.  Other
 times nothing works, and my world is thrown into turmoil all over again.

We got this card in the mail from Shadow's, and now Sniffer's vet.  It made
me extremely sad.  I once again saw Shadow and the images would not stop.  They are still
 rolling around in my head right now.  How I miss that wild kitty.  My Brutus I ache for.

I have had a total of 8 kitties and that includes Sniffer.  I have loved them all with all 
my heart.  At one time I had 5 kitties.  After them came Brutus.  Brutus took my heart.

To all of you, may your days always be filled with goodness and sunshine.
Do not forget that in our darkest of moments there is someone who is having it much
 worse.  As I always will say, there is always something to be grateful for.

Have you had one of those days where you hate the world?  And anything
 that happens, even dropping your pen , makes you want to break down and cry?..


Mar 23, 2016


If the only prayer you ever say in your entire life is thank you, it will be enough...

Sadness, grief call it what you like; it is really very strange.  There are days I can go by 
with just minimum tears, but then there are days like today when suddenly it comes to you,
 and nothing can stop the flow of the tears.  That's what happened to me this morning.  

Suddenly it hit me again, like a ton of bricks that my Brutus is dead and once again the rawness 
of the loss and ache took over.  The tears came fast and furious, but once it subsided, I guess
 I was back in that spot of so called "calmness."  Yes it comes and goes in waves. 

Sniffer is just the therapy we need.  He keeps us smiling with his cuteness and busy with
 all the games he wants to play.  As soon as I wake up he's ready to play and that goes
 on throug out the day.  Me I am just happy to oblige.  He's so darn cute and
 he makes the most endearing sounds.  Very hard to resist so I don't.

Woke up to blue skies and the sun in its full glory.  
I know it is going to be a good day.

Arvid and I had some time for a little outing to the beach yesterday.  As always it was
relaxing and very calming.  I love our beach walks.  Makes everything seem possible, and
 makes, just listening to the sound of the waves and the birds makes me realize how
 good life is.  As I said before, I may not have all that I want but what I do 
have is very good.  For that I am grateful.  How about you?

A thankful heart is a happy heart.  It is not happy people who
 are thankful, it is thankful people who are happy...


Mar 22, 2016


Sometimes we just have to let things go, at least we have to try...

Tuesday and it started out on the chilly side, but now it is absolutely beautiful.
The air is breezy and the skies are blue.  The boats passing by all day long.  Life is good.

We are fortunate.  We may not have all that we want.  Yes there is something I want 
that I will never have.  Two somethings.  I desperately want my Brutus back, and Shadow. 
 I would love for Shadow to have had a better longer life.  Today we have Sniffer and it's good.

I am much calmer since Sniff Sniff came into our lives.  I still miss my Brutus.  Nothing
and no one can change that.  He's my Brutus and forever my heart aches for him. Shadow was 
with us less that 4 months.  So much was going on.  For him I grief.  I grief for how his life ended.

Sniffer makes me think positive thoughts again.  Makes me see that I am capable of loving
and opening my heart to another kitty again.  Sniffer is a reminder that life goes on.

Today our eldest grand daughter turns 3 years old.  We're not there with her, but our hearts and 
our love goes out to her today and everyday.  To her, her sister and parents.  We love you all.

Pictured to the left is Aleah today, 3 years old.  The others was 2015 Florida,
 when we first met her and fell in love with her.  Who can blame us.  Shes PRECIOUS!!!

Tomorrow my nephew turns 23 years old.  Time is going by way too fast.
To all a very good day.  May your days always be filled with smiles, love and joy.

I don't want a perfect life, I want a happy life.


Mar 21, 2016


Be grateful for small things, big things and everything in between...

Little Sniffer or Sniff Sniff as I call him.  He makes us happy.

He makes us smile and laugh.  My little Sniff Sniff.

What are you grateful for today?

Never let the things you want make you forget the things you have...


Mar 20, 2016

Always Something To Be Happy About...

Life doesn't get easier.  You just get better at being able to handle it.
Memories are what I have, and they are beautiful ones though sad as well. 
Mama loves her Brutus and Shadow...

Yesterday was two weeks little Shadow died. I'm so heartbroken for him. The way he died 
was just wrong. So very wrong. For that my heart grieves for him. Arvid does not 
mention Shadow much.  I talk all the time about them. I grieve for Shadow.  

I ache For Brutus. Brutus was my baby.  Shadow was my little kitty kat.  
Both now gone.  Yes. Yesterday I had a rough time for a few hours.

My morning started out beautifully.  As Arvid still slept, I went to the beach. Mornings as 
I always say is my favorite time of the day and nothing better than some quiet time by,
 myself listening to the sound of the waves.  I really enjoy my time alone.  I'm always at 
peace with myself, and for those moments all in calm in my mind and my wold.

Later in the day Arvid and I went to a car show.  Lots of nice cars around.  We took 
our 1961 Oldsmobile there as well.  It's for sale or partial trade.  Arvid gets a kick out
 of these things.  He's in his element, and of course we saw some very cool cars.

The day was strange. Sunshine then suddenly the clouds turned dark, and it was wet and windy.
Not an unusual day here in the Sunshine State.  A few hours of  switching between rain, and 
wind it finally settled to sunshine again. You just go with the flow and be happy.

In the evening we went to the movies. It was good to see something that really did not
 require any concentration.  For a couple of hours we were laughing and feeling pretty relaxed.

The dine-in movie theater is a success.  Menu and all.  Just like being in a restaurant, and even
 better you just press a little button and someone comes up to you.  Last night called for
something a little bit stronger than just my usual Pepsi.  Last night I had the Caribbean Cooler. 
 Not sure what it was, but it tasted good and had a pretty color.  Good enough for me.

Today is looking a little cloudy right now, hopefully it will clear up in time for us to do
some fun stuff.  Sundays.  One of our favorite days of the week.  It's just ours.

Happy Sunday everyone.  Also first day of spring and Palm Sunday.
Many reasons to be grateful and to enjoy this new day that is given to us.

Start everyday with a smile.  At least it's a good start...


Mar 19, 2016


Mark Twain didn't actually say half the shit the Internet said he said...

The grass is not always greener on the other side.

There is no patience on the Internet.

The thing about quotes on the Internet is that you can't confirm their validity.

Time to rise and shine.  And so begins another day in Norway.

Dear Internet.  You should feel special. 
 I'm always choosing you over sleep...


Mar 17, 2016

Started Out As A Good Day...

I try to tell my heart not to want things it can't have...

The day was going pretty well.  Had many things to do so far, but then it was time to make
 lunch.  As I opened the fridge and was looking for something, I came across a tiny
 little bottle with medicine.  It was Shadows.  He had an allergy to something,
 and I gave him medicine for it.  The rash as I had mentioned had disappeared. 

 That bottle set me back.  Now I am a wreck and totally devastated all over again.  The 
horror of it all is once again be relived in my mind.  I can't stop it.  I can't slow it.  I 
just can't stop seeing Shadow. Shadow!!!  Shadow!!! I could not save you!!!!!

 I am even at the point of having doubts as to what  happened and how it happened. 
 Yes, I will calm down.  I always do.  What else can one do, but calm down?

Right now my day is ruined.  I am back to square one, but will be working to get back to 
that state of being OK.  Everyone expects you to be OK.  Then I will be OK.

May your day be much better than what I am experiencing.

I simply cannot find the word to describe what I feel right now...


Mar 16, 2016

Wednesday At Home...

Difficult roads often lead to beautiful destinations...

As I have always mentioned, our lifestyle is hectic.  Though I sometimes wish
we could slow down a bit, I am always grateful to be on the move doing something 
with Arvid.  Especially now.  Keeps our minds busy and at the same time we are on the job.

Yesterday was one of those days.  We were on the road for 10 hours together with
 a friend. There you see me sitting on an almost dry log.  I was the translator 
for Arvid and Jim.The man we went to meet spoke only Spanish.  
It was as comfortable there as in any office I have been in.

Everyone was comfortable and best of all we had a great time and met a very nice man.
I enjoyed walking around the "bush"  chopping a few things here and there and just
having a blast in the sun.  Always careful to watch out for critters and other animals.

We all had a good time. Lots of laughter while doing business is always good and refreshing.
Last night I woke up looking for Shadow once again next to my floor mat.  Miss that
wild one.  While my heart grieves for Brutus, my  heart is heart broken for Shadow.

Today has been a good day so far.  No running around for a change. Not sure
about tomorrow, but I know Friday will also be a good day.  Looking forward to it.
For now, it's just nice to have some quiet time at home.  No running around for a change.

Wishing you all a very good day.  I have my good moments and hopefully one day it will be 
more good moments than not so good one.  I know everyone has their own battle to fight.
I just wish that with each passing day our battles become easier to bear, easier 
to deal with and easier to live with.  It is what it is after all.  LIFE!

The world isn't sunshine and rainbows.  It'll beat you down if you let it,
and nothing hits harder than life.  These times are hard but it will pass...


Mar 15, 2016

And So Begins Another Day...

No amount of sleep in this world could cure the tiredness I feel...

Something as simple as an empty jar that was once filled with Shadow's foodies is enough
 to set me off.  I also found his headless mouse.  He loved every toy he had, but boy 
did he enjoy chasing this headless one. It was his first toy that was not a hand 
down from Brutus.  His very first toy was given to him by Liliana. 

I try to only remember the cuteness, the crazy little kitty and the wildness that made
Shadow the special kitty he was.  I do.  Yesterday again as I took the clothes out
 from the dryer I could not help but touch and feel how hot it was.  It was so hot.  
I burnt my hand.  Shadow.  All I saw was Shadow.  How does one wipe 
out such a memory?  If anyone knows the answer please let me know.  

Yesterday was Arvid's brothers last day here.  We had lunch with him and we had a
 few good hours together.  Unfortunately, his girlfriend was sick and was not able to be with us. 
 Even so Arvid, and his brother bonded.  Like family should.  Was good to see them together.

The funny thing is that Arvid and I live here in Florida yet the brother who lives in Norway,
 and was only here for 2 weeks has more of a tan that we do.  Yep!  It happens.  When 
you live in the Sunshine State you're in the sun all day long so you actually try to 
not stay out much in it.  But coming from a cold country one can't blame them
 for wanting to grab as much sunshine as possible. Every one is happy!

Good morning everyone.  Make today an awesome day  and don't forget to say thank you
 for the privilege of waking up to another day.  I never do, and I never take it for
 granted.  Remember, we never know what tomorrow holds.  As we all know,
tomorrow is never promised.  Shadow never saw it coming.  Did Brutus?

Dear mind.  Please stop thinking so much at night.  I need to sleep.