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I'm happy, married, and looking forward to sharing my world with you! If you're interested, that is!

Friday, February 27, 2009

Getting Old - Dying Young

Yes, I'm talking about me.

I don't think "hypochondriac" was ever a word anyone would have used to describe me. At least, not "then."

"Now?" I'm not so sure.

As I get older, and trust me, these days 48 is "older," every little ache and pain scares me. (I am on the down side of the hill now!!! Even though I'm officially 2 years away from that "over the hill party" I told my daughter she has to throw me!) I am not so reluctant to go to a doctor, or take a pill, or do what has to be done to "make it better." (Remember the days when a kiss was all it took? Them days are loooong gone, baby!)

As people close to me get older, they begin to complain of aches and pains, too, and sometimes they have to go the doctor. Then they tell me their doctor's diagnosis.

And all of a sudden, when I have a similar twinge in a spot close to where they hurt, all of a sudden, I am the one with an ulcer, or arthritis, or cancer, or a tumor...

I know this is overreacting at its best. But I can't help it.

I now have a sore spot on my head. Yes, on my head. Right on the left side of my face, where my glasses just begin to touch my face, in front of my ear, on the top of my cheekbone. And just to prove the pain is there, I've had to press it so it hurts every few minutes for the past three hours, since I noticed it for the first time!

It feels like a bone bruise, it's that sort of dull, bruising ache, only when I touch it. But on my cheekbone? It's got to be cancer. Or a tumor like my sister's boyfriend just had removed. Or a fracture (NO, Jack didn't take a swing at me!). Or maybe my sinuses are congested.

But there's something not quite right.

And now I'll have to press on it until Monday night, March 9, when Jack has a doctor's appointment for an annual physical. That night I'll have to ask Dr. R. what it could be.

If it hurts that long.

And Lord knows it will 'cause I will physically be incapable of not pressing on that sore spot until I see the doctor that night. So even if it is supposed to be nothing, and stop hurting, it won't 'cause I'm gonna push and nag and press and bruise that spot until I actually hurt myself!!! (Compulsive, you think?!?)

Another magazine is going under...

Hallmark Magazine will no longer be Hallmark Magazine. Hallmark (corporate) has been forced to put an end to this magazine. The February/March issue will be the last one.

And my Catholic guilt is making me feel as though had I subscribed to this magazine the way I wanted to when it first came out, it wouldn't be going under now.

I know that's ridiculous. But what's more ridiculous is that there are all sorts of worthless, disgusting, degrading magazines out there with enough circulation to keep them going even in these difficult times. But a nice, wholesome, pretty magazine like Hallmark Magazine? Not so much.

Very sad.

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Okay, so I lied...

I'm back. For now. For a few minutes.

Nope, nothing important is going on. I just felt like I had to write something! Miss Hope emailed me and said she'd have worried had I not noted I'd be MIA for a while... Aw, that Miss Hope! She's a nice lady!

Work is work. There's a bit of an internal power struggle between our department and another in our same division. They're trying to take over accounts I've been working with, and accounts my colleagues have been working on, too. A comment flew by me today that the VP in our department likes this wrangling; he thinks some internal competition is healthy. Well, I don't. I'm a firm believer in respecting each other's territory, in working as a team, one for all and all for one, as it were. This infighting just leads to bad blood and bad morale, as well.

My sister's beau had some surgery last week. 41 staples later, they've removed the primary tumor, some smaller ones, too, and the spot that's left will be treated with radiation. The doctors are giving him a good prognosis and expect that chemo will not be necessary. I've had everything crossed that could safely be crossed: eyes, fingers, toes, etc. And I've been praying, Lord knows I've been praying! My sister is really happy with this guy and she deserves some happiness in her life (her ex, well, let's just say L.O.S.E.R. with a capital L!). He's having some pain and some trouble with recovery; apparently he's not a sit-down-and-just-heal kind of guy. He's a get-up-and-go-and-do-and-never-sit-still kind of guy so he's a bit nuts. (And it's only been one week! Imagine what he'll be like for the next 7 weeks...)

So, anyway, Jack went to the doctor for a pain in his back. He was getting up in the morning and feeling, well, crippled! He was sore and bent over and since he's very fit it was a bit worrisome for him. The diagnosis? Arthritis of the spine. No idea yet, though, whether that's one of those diagnoses that the doctors put on paper so insurance will pay, or whether, indeed, he has arthritis of the spine. The reason I tend to believe he doesn't is that he was fine. Until he wasn't. Until he laid down on the gym floor with the little kiddy-poos, then got up with a giant OUCH! No little twinges, no aches and pains - an all of a sudden, one-time, OMG! I think I hurt myself! kind of pain...

BUT, that said, his cholesterol is a bit high and there were some white blood cells in his urine and his white blood count was a bit low. I Googled that and it appears it could be as insignificant as a urinary tract infection or a kidney infection. Or it could be worse. He has an appointment for a full physical on Monday, March 9. So I suppose all of this will be addressed then. I am not my sister-in-law so instead of panicking and worrying until the 9th, I called the doctor this morning. IF there was anything to worry about the doctor would have had the nurse call Jack in sooner. The physical on the 9th is "just fine." So, see? No reason to worry. (Except that now I feel all guilty and want to quit my job so I can stay home and cook healthier food for him!)

So, here I am, asking you to keep us on your prayer list, even those of you who don't know us! (I figure it can't hurt to have some extra praying going on for us, right?!??!) I want my hubby to be just fine, to have a little infection that actually will be gone by the 9th 'cause his ear/nose/throat doctor just put him on an antibiotic for a sinus infection...

Tonight I'm going to Scrapping Bingo! I won some cool prizes last time and I have a cool prize to donate this time. I'm also going to pick up the really cool stuff I bought from my SU rep. And remember, if Jack runs into you and asks about the "stuff" I brought home: I.WON.IT.AT.BINGO. That's my story and I'm sticking to it!!!

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Absolutely no time to post...

Really busy at work, and no time at home, either...

I promise to be back next week... (although if I'm not, I'm just still busy, not incapacitated!)


Sunday, February 22, 2009

I'm published!

One of my photos has been chosen to be included in the online Schmap Las Vegas Sixth Edition!
On the right, you'll see I added a link to the online travel guide.
Just click on Eiffel Tower, then on the right side, you can scroll through the photos. I'm credited below my photo!!!
Who'd have ever thought?!?!?!?

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Meme from Dooce (believe it or not!)

I LOVE to read Heather at dooce.com and yesterday she posted a meme about Jon. She suggested we respond either in the comments or here on our blogs. [Guess which one I chose?!?]

What are your middle names? My middle name is Felicja (yes, with a "J," like my first name doesn't get mispelled enough!) and Jack is Italian. What do you think his middle name is? (Yes, it's Anthony.)

How long have you been together? Now I can piss Jack off and tell you that it's been 19 years this April, except for the 11 months in the middle of the beginning of that period of time where he dumped me - twice. Or I can simply say, from the beginning of our relationship? 19 years.

How long did you know each other before you started dating? You know, I'm not really sure. He worked at the garage where I initially met him for years and I probably knew (of) him for at least two or three years before we started dating, but I thought he was a real male chauvinist pig and wanted nothing to do with him. (That stellar opinion of a man who's as far away from being a male chauvinist pig as a man can be is mine. Misguided, wrong, and WAY off base, but mine.)

Who asked whom out? He asked me out. I'm a very old-fashioned girl; I would NEVER have invited an almost perfect stranger out. (Okay, that sounds wrong - I am perfect, I was just almost a stranger!)

How old are each of you? Ugh. Okay. I'm 48 plus 2 months, and he's 58 less 2 months. (Do the math!)

Whose siblings do you see the most? Hmm, good question. We used to see them even-Stephen, but the past few years, my one sister now has a boyfriend so we don't see her any more and my other sister lives in AZ so unfortunately I almost never see her! (Although I'm going to buy a webcam so she and I can see each other regularly - I got spoiled using Mom's laptop while she was out there!). After a lot of nothing - we see his sister every Monday so I have to say, "his."

Which situation is the hardest on you as a couple? Right now we're estranged from his son, not by our choice, but by Johnny's. This is even harder on us than going through crap about the ex-wife - sorry, Heather, couldn't manage to make it through this without an ex-wife comment!

Did you go to the same school? Nope. Not even close! I went to Oakview, St. Thomas the Apostle, Paul VI Regional High School, and the University of Delaware. He went to Franklin, Bloomfield High School, Bloomfield College and Kean College (now Kean University).

Are you from the same town? Finally, a resounding "YES!" In fact, the same street! But since I'm so much younger than he is, as Heather said in her blog entry, "when he was a senior in high school, I was in third grade learning long division." J's sister likes to say this growing up on the same street thing was fate - but with 10 years between us, it would have been illegal for a long time!!!

Who is smarter? I say we're both smart. I also say I used to be much smarter; I've gotten dumber as I've aged! (You know, if you don't use it, you lose it!) Jack is very smart, but doesn't truly think he is.

Who is the most sensitive? If this question is rephrased to "Who cries the most?" That would be moi. He is sensitive, but not too sensitive, and sometimes not even remotely sensitive - he's a guy, for crying out loud!!!

Where do you eat out most as a couple? I'm ashamed to admit this but either (a) Burger King or (b) Costco. (Yea, I know, pathetic!)

Where is the furthest the two of you have traveled as a couple? The Caribbean.

Who has the craziest exes? Hands down, Jack does.

Who has the worst temper? Me. Jack is a lover, not a fighter. He has decided he will not fight. He apparently faced a lot of that in his previous marriage and will not do it. I'm a yeller/screamer, then it's gone, poof! Out of my system. But he can't handle it so now I'm not a fighter. I get quiet, like him, withdraw into myself, like him, and use hand gestures and bad words behind his back, NOT like him! When one of us is in a temper, the house is REAL quiet...

Who does the cooking? Most definitely, Jack is the better cook. I can do omelets, french toast, pasta, a complete Thanksgiving meal, but on a day to day basis? Ugh. I hate to cook. The closest to being a cook I ever got was my maiden name. Jack can whip something up from whatever leftover stuff is in the refrigerator, and he makes some mean homemade tomato sauce. But admittedly, it's just the two of us and we're gone, out of the house, from before 7am, until after 6pm, so we eat out a lot...

Who is the neat-freak? Most definitely NOT me! I have a high tolerance for clutter, and a very patient husband. Although lately I've been itching to throw out whatever's not nailed down, just to declutter my house and my life, and he's been saying things like, "But we might have a garage sale this spring, just save it for now..." Enabler!

Who is more stubborn? Oh, this is absolutely a flat-out tie!!!

Who hogs the bed? This is tough. We both start out on our respective sides of the bed, with him hanging almost off the edge! But by morning, I'd say probably me....

Who wakes up earlier? Jack. Usually around 4 or 5am. Me? I used to be able to sleep later, but I could be perfectly happy sleeping 'til, oh, 8am or so every day, but I can't 'cause, "Come on, Hon, we're burnin' daylight!"

Where was your first date? Franklin Theater, Nutley, NJ, to see Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (the original), then the Tick Tock Diner for dessert, until 1am.

Who is more jealous? Neither of us is jealous, and neither of us has any reason to be jealous.

How long did it take to get serious? Well, we started dating April 1990. He dumped me in January 1991, claiming we "got too serious too fast." We got back together in March 1991. Then he asked for his house key back in July 1992. Then we got back together, this time forever, in March 1993. So I guess it got serious pretty quickly, considering his panic attacks...

Who eats more? We can both pack it away, for sure, hence my membership in Weight Watchers! But when he puts his mind to it, he can really clean a plate!!!

Who does the laundry? This week, he does, he's off from school for the week. And honestly, it's probably 60/40 he does. This goes back to my higher tolerance for clutter... He just can't stand to see it pile up while I can easily wait 'til Saturday to do laundry...

Who's better with the computer? Let's just say he doesn't even know how to retrieve his voice mail on his cell phone. 'Nough said.

Who drives when you're together? We both do. I like to drive so I never mind getting behind the wheel, and you know, with that 10 years older thing, he gets tired late in the day so often I'll drive at night...

Feel free to answer some or all of the same questions about your significant other in the comments, or leave a link to your website if you prefer answering there.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Driving at 21, not 17

If you have teens about to drive, visit C's Space. She's got two teens, one 18 and one 17, both driving, and apparently both driving her nuts!

I have no problem with raising the driving age to 21. If you can work and show you're responsible enough to earn some money, you might even be responsible enough to own/drive a car. Having/driving a car is not an inalienable right, despite most teens' opinions - it's a privilege, one to be earned.

The problem is many teens don't earn the privilege. They're given cars upon graduation, or upon turning 17. While there are plenty of responsible 17-year-olds out there who have been working since they could work, it's not the majority of them.

I signed her petition. If you agree, drop her a line!

And I know there will be people out there who will argue that if you're old enough to fight for this country, you should be old enough to drink and/or drive. So raise everything to 21 - you become an adult when you turn 21. Period. End of argument.

Monday, February 09, 2009

Much ado about nothing...

Actually, NOT much ado about anything!

I have nothing to share. Other than a few unrelated comments and observances...

April 21 - free ice cream cone at your local Ben & Jerry's
April 29 - a scoop for $.31 at Baskin-Robbins
July 11 - free 7oz Slurpee at 7-Eleven
September 24 - a free* ice cream treat at Coldstone Creamery (with a donation to the Make-a-Wish Foundation encouraged)

Do you think my niece will be upset if we're late for the wedding celebrations 'cause we stop at every 7-Eleven on the route?!

So here's the email I just sent my boss:

Wes, Is it too late for me to take Friday off this week? Mom has some dr appts and could use a ride…

I’ll contact my major customers so I can get their orders in by Thursday, if they’re planning any. Unfortunately no one covered for me while I was out sick two Fridays ago, so I’d rather hustle a little before I go and then worry about the little stuff
that comes in over that transom when I get back on Tuesday…



If you go back a few days, you'll see the post this refers to - no one helped my customers while I was out sick and I've been fuming about it ever since. This email is my way of letting my boss know there's a problem, and if I know him, he'll be asking me about it tomorrow... At which point I'll be happy to 'splain!

Tonight we're going to my SIL's for dessert. Mom's coming so she'll be the belle of the ball while we're there! Everyone missed her, not just me! Like my SIL said, she's the only mom we all have left!

Anyway, like I said, not much to post about... I found a list of things to blog about when you have nothing to blog about, so here's one:

#11 - a spiritual experience -- When my father was dying, they called me at work on Friday night and said to come to the hospital right then, that he most likely wouldn't last the night. Of course, I took off, flying through the streets as fast as I could. We all went in to see him, one at a time. He hadn't been lucid for a few days. I went in to see him and held his hand. He opened his eyes and looked RIGHT.AT.ME. I told Daddy how much I loved him, that he didn't have to worry about Mommy or P or C, that I'd take care of them, that I'd be there for them, that I loved him and that I was going to miss him every minute of every day. DADDY.WAS.THERE. Looking at me. Understanding me. God gave me my daddy back for that couple of minutes. The daddy who loved me, who told me with his eyes that he understood what I'd said, that he loved me, too. And that man, who'd been bedridden and immobile for such a long time, he picked up his hand, complete with the i.v. and the board it was strapped to - he raised his hand to me. And he looked at me. And he said he loved me. He said it with his eyes, not his voice, but he said it. He was there, right there. What a gift from God. And this is what I think of every time someone says they don't believe in God: Oh, yeah? Well, let me tell you - if there's no such thing as God, who gave me my daddy back that night? And who helped him to hang on until every one of us got to visit with him? And why did every one of us say almost the same thing? That Daddy was there. For us. One last time.

Saturday, February 07, 2009

Tag! You're it!

I got tagged by Shazza. I'm supposed to tag six of you and tell you to find the sixth picture folder on your computer and pull the sixth photo out, and make a blog entry about it and tag six more people. You're supposed to do the same, leaving me a message or emailing me to say you're participating.
Instead, if you want to play, do it and leave me a message on my blog so I can go and check your entry out!!!
This is the house Krys grew up in. We moved into this house in 1964, when it was just the three of us, Daddy, Mommy, and me. My parents liked to tell the story about how I went door to door, saying, "Hi, my name is Krys. I live over there. Do you have any little girls I can play with?"

My 2 sisters joined us in 1965 and 1966, and it was just the five of us until Belle, our Samoyed, joined the family in 1970. We had a nice fenced in backyard. I have two special memories of the backyard: we had a party for my sister's birthday back there, and my dad put up this huge parachute as a tent! And I remember the wysteria bush that grew up and over the gate - it was just beautiful.

I learned a lot in this house. I learned that a family loves each other no matter what. I learned that there's no one you can count on like a mom, a dad or a sister. I learned that my dog could be not only a member of the family, but sometimes even better than that: she loved unconditionally ane never talked back at you!!! I learned that parents sacrifice for their children. My mom always said: When you're single, you answer to no one. It's just you. When you're married, your marriage comes first, your husband second, and then you. When you have kids, the children have to come first, the family second, the marriage third, your husband and yourself dead last. And if you're not ready to make that commitment of time and sacrifice, wait to have children until you are. And I never forgot that lesson. My parents lived it every day of every year, and my mom still does.

My dad died in 1987. There's not a day goes by that I don't think of him. When I drive up to this house (my mom still lives here with her two cats), I think of my dad. As much as it's Mom's house, it's Daddy's house.

This was, and is, a happy house. It's a refuge. It's where I learned you can always go home and be welcomed with open arms. It's not the neatest or the most beautiful or the biggest or the most valuable house.

But it's home.

Wednesday, February 04, 2009

There's a contest over at Orange Peanut. I found it on Stefany's blog, Pikes Pickles.
The "Where there is love" plaque is SO me! I collect quotes and this is one of my favorites! It would look lovely just casually hung among my family pictures... I hope I win!!! (Although I would be happy for anyone lucky enough to win this great prize!)

Go on over and enter! And leave her a comment or two! Tell her I sent you!!!

Mom's Home!!!

So I left work at about 3:35, headed to Penn Station/Newark. Parked the car and went inside.

15 minutes later, Mom was home!!!

I'm so glad she's here! I know she had a great time at P's house, and I know she likes to go there, but it's really hard on my husband when mom is away. I admit it. I'm a big baby! In fact, J met us at the Tick Tock for dinner. He came in, gave Mom a hug and a kiss and said, "Thanks for coming home, Mom! Now I'll have a happy home again!"

BUT with the advent of a webcam setup, I can deal with it in a much more adult manner!  When I finally return Mom's laptop to her, I'll go out and buy myself a webcam. (It's a cheaper alternative to a laptop I really can't justify at this time!)

On the way home, it was snowing. (Actually, it was snowing all day.) I've never had the experience of not being able to stop my car on ice; I know, I've been lucky. Yesterday, though, I was sending many thank yous up to Jesus for ABS brakes! Boy howdy, were the roads slippery! A couple of times I was sweating thinking I was going to hit the man and woman crossing the street in front of me. I was afraid, in a way, to beep the horn or flash my headlights 'cause I thought they'd think I was telling them to go ahead and cross in front of me when in fact I couldn't stop my truck!!! [Jack pointed out I should have just LAID on the horn, long and strident, so they'd know something was wrong.]

I'm having some trouble here at work. I know I need to let it go, but I'm having a hard time not obsessing over it. What do you think?

There are 6 of us in our territory. We all answer to W. Here's the breakdown of our territories: I have 12 states, R has 10, E has 9, D has 14, and K has 2 plus author sales. S has the US for corporate bulk sales but for the most part, he just sits and waits for orders to hit his desk; it's not a very proactive job...

A couple of weeks ago, R and E were out at the same time. For a week. And I covered for them. By myself. We don't have an assistant anymore, and we don't know when/if we'll get one. K has already stated, in no uncertain terms, that she's too overworked with her 2 states and author sales to help cover our territories when we're out. (This was in response to my joking with her that I was going to put her name down as a contact when I went on vacation - she said I could, but that she wouldn't be doing any of the work. Now, keep in mind that she refers all existing author accounts to customer service and is away from her desk for 3 hours a day, running, visiting her mom who works in our company, and doing whatever else it is she does when she's not at her desk...)

Anyway, I covered for R and E. Then I called out sick last Friday.


And E found it necessary to send me an email to tell me that she overheard R telling my accounts that I'd be back in the office on Monday and that they could contact me then. Okay, I was pissed. But then I walked over and saw that E didn't do anything for me either.

3 orders came in on Friday, over the fax. One at 8:45am, one at noon-ish, and one at 3-something pm. Plenty of time to process them before they went home. And no one did a single thing for me.

I'm SO hot under the collar that I can't stand myself, let alone these people.

I love my job. It's easy and I'm certainly not going anywhere. But I'm done doing unto others. They did squat for me.

My pals seem to think I should talk to my boss about it. I feel as though I could be perceived as ratting them out. I don't want to be a rat fink, but I'm feeling distinctly taken advantage of and obviously they don't care about my customers as much as I cared about them.

I think I'm just going to keep my distance and tell them not to put me down to cover them the next time they ask if they can. Or if they don't even ask, just refer their customers back to them when they return. Or to customer service. Why should I go the extra mile when they won't help me out at all???

What do you think?

Monday, February 02, 2009

Sometimes it's just this simple...

Got this email from a friend of mine...

"From a teacher in the Nashville area.

"Who worries about the cow when it is all about the ice cream?

"The most eye-opening civics lesson I ever had was while teaching third grade this year. The presidential election was heating up and some of the children showed an interest. I decided we would have an election for a class president. We would choose our nominees. They would make a campaign speech and the class would vote. To simplify the process, candidates were nominated by other class members. We discussed what kinds of characteristics these students should have. We got many nominations and from those, Jamie and Olivia were picked to run for the top spot.

"The class had done a great job in their selections. Both candidates were good kids. I thought Jamie might have an advantage because he got lots of parental support. I had never seen Olivia's mother.

"The day arrived when they were to make their speeches. Jamie went first. He had specific ideas about how to make our class a better place. He ended by promising to do his very best.

"Everyone applauded. He sat down and Olivia came to the podium. Her speech was concise. She said, "If you will vote for me, I will give you ice cream."

"She sat down.

"The class went wild. "Yes! Yes! We want ice cream!" She surely could say more. She did not have to. A discussion followed. How did she plan to pay for the ice cream? She wasn't sure. Would her parents buy it or would the class pay for it? She didn't know. The class really didn't care. All they were thinking about was ice cream. Jamie was forgotten.

"Olivia won by a landslide.

"Every time Barack Obama opened his mouth he offered ice cream and fifty-two percent of the people reacted like nine year olds. They want ice cream. The other forty-eight percent of us know we're going to have to feed the cow and clean up the mess."