Friday, February 29, 2008

HI!!! Come say hi.

All you visitors--leave a comment even if it's just to say "hi"
It's interesting to see where I get visitors from.
*Auburn, Kent, Redmond, Olympia, Seattle, Federal Way, Renton- Washington
*Denver, Castle Rock, Ft. Morgan--Colorado
*Ft. Wayne, Warsaw, South bend ---Indiana
*Oshkosh, Wausau, Waunakee, Menasha, Appleton, Neenah--- Wisconsin
*United Kingdom
*Tuscon, Chandler, Arizona
*Rhode Island
*Beachwood, New Jersey
*Roselle, Schaumburg, Algonquin, Hoffman Estates, Barrington,Winfield, Carol Stream, Palatine, Glendale Heights, Lombard, Elk Grove Village, Hanover Park, et al ad nauseum--- Illinois
Say HI in the comment area. Just to let me know where you are from!!!! I see you keep visiting!!

Thursday, February 28, 2008


Knowledge is defined variously as expertise, and skills acquired by a person through experience or education; the theoretical or practical understanding of a subject.
Knowledge acquisition involves complex cognitive processes: perception, learning, communication, association and reasoning. The term knowledge is also used to mean the confident understanding of a subject with the ability to use it for a specific purpose if appropriate.

Have you ever learned something new?? Before you roll your eyes, just bear with me a minute here.
Your answer is a resounding "of course"!! We have all gained knowledge and learned something new, it happens on a daily basis.
Well, imagine then, being accused of misrepresenting who you are because you gained computer knowledge! It happened to me with a person I used to be friendly with. Of course over a few years one would learn new things associated with the computer and it's usage.
There have been many things I have learned. I learned simple things, like how to copy and paste and quote. I still can't multiple quote but if you have a tutorial for that feel free to comment.
Also, I used to have to have my husband download all my pictures. Guess what?? I learned to do that too.
Does gaining knowledge make one a liar?? I would think not.

Luke 17:3
Take heed to yourselves: If thy brother trespass against thee, rebuke him; and if he repent, forgive him.

A sweater for my Daughter

These are pictures of the sweater I made my daughter. She saw the baby/child sweaters I made and asked for one. So I made her one. I started it a while ago and set it aside and it isn't perfect either. But for a first effort on an adult sized garment, I think it turned out well. It's about a woman's medium and it is a beautiful dark purple.

Thankful Thursday

Today I am thankful for:
*a clean house
*a full pantry
*God's grace

Psalm 118:24
This is the day the LORD has made;
We will rejoice and be glad in it.

Ezekiel 18:30
Therefore I will judge you, O house of Israel, every one according to his ways, saith the Lord GOD. Repent, and turn yourselves from all your transgressions; so iniquity shall not be your ruin.

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Lemony Lime blanket

This is the blanket I made from the lime green yarn I posted about here.

It's about the size of a crib blanket. Not too big, not too small, and it's folded in the pic. It took me a while to finish, I had set it aside for a while.
The lime green yarn is on the right and the other color on the left is called lemon-lime, they are both 100% cotton yarn. It wasn't a perfect match, but it looks ok. My husband didn't think it was a pretty blanket but I thought it turned out ok.
The wood hook is one from my dear aunt that she made. It's about a size K.
I still have a couple skeins left. Maybe I'll make dishcloths!!

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

February blankets

These are my February afghans. There are six of them this month. Five of them are made with Homespun and the variegated green one is made with Caron. My goal was to make four this month but I made six!! I enjoyed making these different colors. The two end ones on the right are purples, and the other one is black and white, though it looks gray.

Monday, February 25, 2008


Do you get overwhelmed by the amount of choices these days?? I sometimes do and if I am not organized, I find it difficult to buy something.
Step into the grocery store and look down practically any aisle. Look at peanut butter for example. How many choices do you have?? Several brands at least, cream and chunky.
Jelly is the same--lots of choices. Toothpaste, crackers, orange juice, cookies, crackers, even MILK all come with a variety of choices. Virtually everything comes with at least two choices. Try buying baby food if you don't make your own--it is overwhelming.
Ever try to buy a pair of plain old jeans?? You can't anymore. There is stone washed, acid washed, or faded, relaxed or baggy fit, button fly or zipper. Boot leg, flare or straight leg!! Too many choices!!!
It's not only clothing or food either. It's 401K choices, medical coverage, buying a television or a car, almost anything comes with many choices.
I believe that sometimes less can be more. Limited options can be liberating while more choices are stress inducing.
I had two totally different birth experiences with my children and I fully believe that less is more-- in anything we choose.
Here's a good book on the subject:
The Paradox of Choice: Why More Is Less
By Barry Schwartz

Sunday, February 24, 2008

Proverbs 21

Proverbs 21:2 was in my inbox this morning for my bible verse of the day. So I read the whole chapter and liked it so here it is. Enjoy!

Proverbs 21

1 The king’s heart is in the hand of the LORD,
Like the rivers of water;
He turns it wherever He wishes.
2 Every way of a man is right in his own eyes,
But the LORD weighs the hearts.
3 To do righteousness and justice
Is more acceptable to the LORD than sacrifice.
4 A haughty look, a proud heart,
And the plowing of the wicked are sin.
5 The plans of the diligent lead surely to plenty,
But those of everyone who is hasty, surely to poverty.
6 Getting treasures by a lying tongue
Is the fleeting fantasy of those who seek death.
7 The violence of the wicked will destroy them,
Because they refuse to do justice.
8 The way of a guilty man is perverse;
But as for the pure, his work is right.
9 Better to dwell in a corner of a housetop,
Than in a house shared with a contentious woman.
10 The soul of the wicked desires evil;
His neighbor finds no favor in his eyes.
11 When the scoffer is punished, the simple is made wise;
But when the wise is instructed, he receives knowledge.
12 The righteous God wisely considers the house of the wicked,
Overthrowing the wicked for their wickedness.
13 Whoever shuts his ears to the cry of the poor
Will also cry himself and not be heard.
14 A gift in secret pacifies anger,
And a bribe behind the back, strong wrath.
15 It is a joy for the just to do justice,
But destruction will come to the workers of iniquity.
16 A man who wanders from the way of understanding
Will rest in the assembly of the dead.
17 He who loves pleasure will be a poor man;
He who loves wine and oil will not be rich.
18 The wicked shall be a ransom for the righteous,
And the unfaithful for the upright.
19 Better to dwell in the wilderness,
Than with a contentious and angry woman.
20 There is desirable treasure,
And oil in the dwelling of the wise,
But a foolish man squanders it.
21 He who follows righteousness and mercy
Finds life, righteousness, and honor.
22 A wise man scales the city of the mighty,
And brings down the trusted stronghold.
23 Whoever guards his mouth and tongue
Keeps his soul from troubles.
24 A proud and haughty man—“Scoffer” is his name;
He acts with arrogant pride.
25 The desire of the lazy man kills him,
For his hands refuse to labor.
26 He covets greedily all day long,
But the righteous gives and does not spare.
27 The sacrifice of the wicked is an abomination;
How much more when he brings it with wicked intent!
28 A false witness shall perish,
But the man who hears him will speak endlessly.
29 A wicked man hardens his face,
But as for the upright, he establishes his way.
30 There is no wisdom or understanding
Or counsel against the LORD.
31 The horse is prepared for the day of battle,
But deliverance is of the LORD.

Saturday, February 23, 2008

Greeley Colorado

I've been thinking about my dad recently. I regret not asking him all these questions while he was alive but who thinks about asking questions while they are alive?? I know I didn't. I always knew my dad lived in Colorado for a while but I never knew the details until now. I wish he was here to talk about his war experiences. What a lot of history that would be.
My Dad came from England with his family when he was young and his dad died when my dad was 13. So I never knew that grandpa. My grandma I remember though. We called her "Mum" or Grandma Andy.
They lived in New York, in Flushing. When my dad came back after WWII, everyone moved to Greeley. His mum, brother/sister in law and his two sisters. They all lived in Greeley for about three years, then the brother moved to St.Louis, Missouri and the sisters moved back to New York. Mum stayed in Greeley and she lived there about 20 years or so, then she moved to St. Louis where she died. We saw her once a year.
My dad worked for the telephone company in Greeley but he didn't last there long--he was color blind!!! What a job to have if you are colorblind!! He couldn't distinguish the wire colors.
My dad eventually moved back to NY and then traveled for his job, where he met my mom. They met in Illinois where my mom was born. Then my dad moved to Minnesota. My mom had lived in Minnesota for a while when she was young too. They got married here and raised us all here.
That's where I was raised and still live.
If your parents are still alive, ask them the questions you want now, before it's too late. There is very little of my dad's family left so I can't find out everything I want to and it makes me sad.

Friday, February 22, 2008

I'm sorry............

I read this somewhere. It makes a lot of sense to me. Sometimes there is nothing a person can do to make it right. I know there is no way for me to right some of the wrongs I've made.

* I'm sorry

* It was my fault

* How do I make it right

On reading blogs...

I like to read a variety of blogs. Some of them make me laugh and some make me cry.
Some make me think and some give me inspiration. Some blogs give me information and some give me ideas!
My friend Bethany inspired me to start blogging about Thankful Thursdays. I'm glad I do because it makes me take time out to just stop and think about what I am thankful for.
Why do you read blogs??

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Thankful Thursday

Today I am thankful for:
*my childhood memories
*life experiences
*that I loved my job when I worked

Psalm 23:5
5 You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies;
You anoint my head with oil;
My cup runs over.

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Lunar Eclipse..........

Fourth picture at 11:05 pm

Third picture taken at 10:30 pm

Second picture taken at 9:50 pm central time

First picture taken at 8:10 pm

I am a little disappointed with my pictures, I wish they would have been better.
Oh well, I will get another chance in December of 2010, there will be another total lunar eclipse then.

More on Baby Blankets........

I've always made baby blankets and afghans for people, family and charity, ever since I learned how to crochet. I mean a person can only have so many afghans right!?
Since May of 2005, I have made a lot of baby blankets, memorial blankets and adult sized afghans.
I always enjoy crocheting each blanket, from chosing the yarn color, hook to use and stitch, to making it and sending it.
Some people even received more than one blanket!!
I have sent to all over the US, Israel, Australia, Great Britain and Canada. I've sent to people I know and to charities where I don't know the people receiving the blanket.
It has always given me great pleasure and joy to make and send afghans.
In straightening out my roll top desk, I found the index cards I kept names and addresses on.
So I added up the blankets I kept track of and this is what I have made and sent since may of 2005.
Baby blankets to cysters-------------------100
Baby blankets to people, and the hospital--25
Adult Blankets and charity-----------------35
Memorial Blankets--------------------------15
Lest anyone think I am bragging or boasting--I am NOT. I am proud of the blankets I make and this is a hobby of mine that I love. It's really no fun working on a memorial blanket for a mama who has lost a baby. But I have been told that the memorial blankets do bring some amount of comfort and that's why I make them.

Lunar Eclipse tonight!!

There is a total lunar eclipse tonight with the chance of seeing Saturn. It's supposed to be terribly cold here tonight but I am going to make the attempt to get some pictures of it. It starts at 7:30 pm Central time and it peeks at about 9:30.
Hopefully I will have some photos to post!!
Here is the link to my last photo of the lunar eclipse from March 3 2007.

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

A perspective on contentment

*Never allow yourself to complain about anything - not even the weather

*Never compare your lot with another's

*Never allow yourself to wish this or that had been otherwise

*Never dwell on tomorrow - remember that tomorrow is God's, not ours

Spring Training!!

Spring Training has started which means the baseball season is almost here. I am excited as I am each year for baseball to start. It seems like a long time from the end of football season to the start of baseball.
This year I am not getting my hopes up for my team. We lost a few great players and gained a few mediocre players. Seems our team owner is a cheapskate.
I will be happy if my team finishes fourth this year, but I will watch all the games on tv and maybe go to a few.
Last year we went to a game with the little guy and he was good for about four innings.
Maybe this year he will last longer.
Our team is also getting a new outdoor stadium in 2010!! I am very excited about that. There is practically nothing better than outdoor baseball!! I don't care for the dome and I have fond memories of Met Stadium.
So here's to baseball!!!

Sunday, February 17, 2008

Mama Drama

I have belonged to several message boards that have come to an end. Most of it has to do with Mama Drama. Most of these boards were support boards
Why mothers can’t be supportive of one another I don’t know. It’s not a contest to see whose child potty trains first or talks or walks or eats solids or says the alphabet or knows all their numbers first. Yet that is exactly what a lot of the message boards are. It’s a huge mommy competition.
What is should be is women and mothers supporting each other and pooling their knowledge into helping each other and bouncing ideas off one another. Not bashing each other. How sad that, again and again, we moms seem to fall short of being there for each other ... giving in to conflict and disagreements every time.
And heaven forbid if you say you just find it hard to believe that a one year old knows numbers up to twenty—you get flamed for it.
Yes, there is plenty of MamaDrama abounding on these message boards.
Then you have the women who boast about their relationships but again, if you say one word about how you don’t think it’s all peaches and cream, you get nailed. And certainly any talk about income was laughed at. I’ve certainly learned many things about people along the way.
So, I have been hurt on message boards and I know I have hurt others. Some women think they own the market on hurt. I know of a message board that was started because people “had been hurt on other message boards”!! Well duh!! Haven’t we all been there and done that?? Yet a lot of those same women were the cause of some huge hurt when one thread was started. Talk about mama drama—that was it at it’s finest. I guess the old saying is true: “birds of a feather flock together”.
In seeing these message boards fold, I’ve learned that a lot of the issues have to do with lack of communication or miscommunication, and personal attacks. Is it so hard to ask someone something if you have an issue with them, or to contact someone you may have an issue with??
The animosity and hateful words I have experienced on these boards has been almost too much. Righteous people acting like they are not at fault at all, when the fact is their very behavior was the cause of the drama. It’s laughable when one board in particular started out of the drama of another support board, yet the moment the new board came into existence, there was drama and controversy behind the scenes and the admin allowed it to continue which I believe led to this particular boards demise.
In belonging to an online community, you come to think of the participants as friends too. Sometimes there are meet-ups and you actually get to know these women in person. Friendships seem to form. I’ve learned that people sometimes pretend to be your friend when they aren’t really. I’ve learned that some of these women were never my friends at all.
Needless to say, I haven’t been posting much on any message boards lately. Just taking a step back and reassessing the whole message board thing. I'm pretty sure it happens on all message boards but I know a lot of hurt feelings can be alleviated with simple communication. Often even simple communication seems too hard for some. Before assuming something, next time try communication to clarify, sometimes it really works and you can avoid all kinds of hurt feelings.

A joke

My cousin sent me this. Be sure to read til the VERY end, that is why I am posting this.

A successful businessman was growing old and knew it was time to choose a successor to take over the business. Instead of choosing one of his directors or his children, he decided to do something different.

He called all the young executives in his company together. He said, "It is time for me to step down and choose the next CEO. I have decided to choose one of you." The young executives were shocked, but the boss continued. "I am going to give each one of you a SEED today - one very special SEED. I want you to plant the seed, water it, and come back here one year from today with what you have grown from the seed I have given you. I will then judge the plants that you bring, and the one I choose will be the next CEO."

One man, named Jim, was there that day and he, like the others, received a seed. He went home and excitedly, told his wife the story. She helped him get a pot, soil and compost and he planted the seed. Everyday, he would water it and watch to see if it had grown. After about three weeks, some of the other executives began to talk about their seeds and the plants that were beginning to grow. Jim kept checking his seed, but nothing ever grew. Three weeks, four weeks, five weeks went by, still nothing. By now, others were talking about their plants, but Jim didn't have a plant and he felt like a failure.

Six months went by - still nothing in Jim's pot. He just knew he had killed his seed. Everyone else had trees and tall plants, but he had nothing. Jim didn't say anything to his colleagues, however. He just kept watering and fertilizing the soil. He so wanted the seed to grow.

A year finally went by and all the young executives of the company brought their plants to the CEO for inspection. Jim told his wife that he wasn't going to take an empty pot. But she asked him to be honest about what happened. Jim felt sick at his stomach, it was going to be the most embarrassing moment of his life, but he knew his wife was right. He took his empty pot to the board room. When Jim arrived, he was amazed at the variety of plants grown by the other executives. They were beautiful -- in all shapes and sizes. Jim put his empty pot on the floor
and many of his colleagues laughed, a few felt sorry for him! When the CEO arrived, he surveyed the room and greeted his young executives.

Jim just tried to hide in the back. "My, what great plants, trees, and flowers you have grown," said the CEO. "Today one of you will be appointed the next CEO!" All of a sudden, the CEO spotted Jim at the back of the room with his empty pot. He ordered the financial director to bring him to the front. Jim was terrified. He thought, "The CEO knows I'm a failure! Maybe he will have me fired!" When Jim got to the front, the CEO asked him what had happened to his Seed, Jim told him the story.

The CEO asked everyone to sit down except Jim. He looked at Jim, and then announced to the young executives, "Behold your next Chief Executive! His name is Jim!" Jim couldn't believe it. Jim couldn't even grow his seed. How could he be the new CEO the others said? Then the CEO said, "One year ago today, I gave everyone in this room a seed. I told you to take the seed, plant it, water it, and bring it back to me today. But, I gave you all boiled seeds; they were dead - it was not possible for them to grow. All of you, except Jim, have brought me trees and plants and flowers. When you found that the seed would not grow, you substituted another seed for the one I gave you. Jim was the only one with the courage and honesty to bring me a pot with my seed in it.

Therefore, he is the one who will be the new Chief Executive!"

If you plant honesty, you will reap trust.
If you plant goodness, you will reap friends.
If you plant humility, you will reap greatness.
If you plant perseverance, you will reap contentment.
If you plant consideration, you will reap perspective.
If you plant hard work, you will reap success.
If you plant forgiveness, you will reap reconciliation.

So, be careful what you plant now; it will determine what you will reap later.

I think I have a problem

I wasn't going to buy any new yarn this year at all and here I find myself with a bunch of it to put away. I told my husband yet again that I am NOT going to buy anymore yarn. He laughed.
I have enough to last a good long time, yet I keep buying more. In my defense, I can make about 5 or 6 blankets a month. So, since I have all this yarn I am going to try not to buy anymore. Like my husband said, "you don't have a yarn problem, you have a yarn storage problem!!!!!

Saturday, February 16, 2008

All Things are Possible..................Join Together

These are two of my favorite songs. They are two very different songs. Enjoy.

Darlene Zschech - All Things Are Possible

Almighty God my Redeemer, my hiding place, my strong refuge
No other name like Jesus, no power can stand against you
My feet are planted on this rock and I will not be shaken
My hope it comes from you alone, my Rock and my Salvation
Your praise is always on my lips, your Word is living in my heart
And I will praise you with a new song, my soul will bless you Lord

You fill my life with greater joy, as I delight myself in you
And I will praise you with a new song, my soul will bless you Lord

My feet are planted on this rock and I will not be shaken
My hope it comes from you alone, my Rock and my Salvation
Your praise is always on my lips, your Word is living in my heart
And I will praise you with a new song, my soul will be bless you Lord

You fill my life with greater joy, as I delight myself in you
And I will praise you with a new song, my soul will bless you Lord

When I am weak you make me strong,
When I'm poor, I know I'm rich for in the power of your name
All things are possible, all things are possible

Your praise is always on my lips, your Word is living in my heart
And I will praise you with a new song, my soul will be bless you Lord

You fill my life with greater joy, as I delight myself in you
And I will praise you with a new song, my soul will bless you Lord

When I am weak you make me strong,
When I'm poor, I know I'm rich for in the power of your name
All things are possible, all things are possible


The Who--- Join Together

When you hear this sound a-comin',
Hear the drummers drumming,
I want you to join together with the band,
We don't move in any 'ticular direction,
And we don't make no collections,
I want you to join together with the band.

Do you really think I care,
What you read or what you wear,
I want you to join together with the band,
There's a million ways to laugh,
And every one's a path,
Come on and join together with the band.

Everybody join together, I want you to join together,
Come on and join together with the band,
We need you to join together, come on and join together,
Come on and join together with the band.

You don't have to play,
You can follow or lead the way,
I want you to join together with the band,
We don't know where we're going,
But the season's right for knowing,
I want you to join together with the band.

It's the singer not the song,
That makes the music move along,
I want you to join together with the band,
This is the biggest band you'll find,
It's as deep as it is wide,
Come on and join together with the band,
Hey hey hey hey hey hey, well everybody come on.

Come on and join, join together with the band,
We need you to join together, everybody come on,

Friday, February 15, 2008

February 15

Today is my dad's birthday. He would have been 82 yrs old. He died twelve years ago after an eight year illness.
He never knew my son but he and my daughter were very close until he died. They were close when my daughter was small too. Grandpa was special!!!!
I wish he was still here.

Thursday, February 14, 2008


Footprints in the Sand

One night I dreamed I was walking along the beach with the Lord. Many scenes from my life flashed across the sky.

In each scene I noticed footprints in the sand. Sometimes there were two sets of footprints, other times there was one only.

This bothered me because I noticed that during the low periods of my life, when I was suffering from anguish, sorrow or defeat, I could see only one set of footprints, so I said to the Lord,

“You promised me Lord,
that if I followed you, you would walk with me always. But I have noticed that during the most trying periods of my life there has only been one set of footprints in the sand. Why, when I needed you most, have you not been there for me?”

The Lord replied, “The years when you have seen only one set of footprints, my child, is when I carried you.”


I love my birds. My husband built an enormous bird feeder many years ago. It is about 6 feet long and has a roof for the birds.
The stupid squirrels are always eating the bird food and peanuts.
We have lots of birds around here and they are fun to watch. The big feeder is out on our deck so we can watch while we are sitting at the table.
The Bluejays are just beautiful but they are so mean. They also like the peanuts.
We have Cardinals--they are gorgeous and they are one bird that is monogamous. Sometimes the female sits in a tree nearby and the male will bring food to her. One day there were two sets of Cardinals in the yard.
There are also chickadees, And we have a downy woodpecker in the neighborhood!! In the warm weather that bird pecks on our log house.
My favorite winter bird is the Dark eyed Junco. They come down here from Canada to winter!! They are pretty too and they like to eat off the ground, so they are often by our door. One winter we found a dead Junco. I am almost positive it was not a well bird.
My favorite bird in the summer is the Hummingbird. There will be more posts on that though. They generally arrive here the first week of May, although last year they were a few days late and I was getting worried. But we had a good Hummingbird season last year!!

Thankful Thursday

This isn't always easy to do. Sometimes it's hard to think of things I am thankful for each week without repeating.
Here goes:
*snow--because my son finds joy in the snow
*my dogs--they are my companions
*old and new friends
*music--it often brings back fond memories
*my vehicle
*I am also thankful we don't celebrate Valentines Day!!
*Gods grace and mercy

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Spirit in the Sky

I've always wondered about this song. I knew Norman Greenbaum was Jewish.
So, I looked him up on Wikipedia and got this info. It wasn't much though.

Norman Greenbaum (born on November 20, 1942 in Malden, Massachusetts) is a singer-songwriter. He studied music at Boston University. Greenbaum is best known for his song "Spirit in the Sky", which sold two million copies in 1969 and 1970. The song, with its combination of 'heavy' guitar, hand-clapping, and spiritual lyrics, was a one-hit wonder. The song has been used in many films, advertisements and television shows.

Greenbaum is notable for the rare achievement of having recorded two one-hit wonders. In 1968, under the name Dr. West's Medicine Show and Junk Band, he recorded the novelty hit "The Eggplant that Ate Chicago".

Interestingly, although his one hit "Spirit in the Sky" is considered by many to be a Jesus rock song with a heavily Christian theme, Greenbaum was and still is a practicing Jew. He was inspired to write the song after observing a preacher on television.

Greenbaum lives in Petaluma, California. He no longer performs in public, but continues to promote concerts and lives off the royalties from his songs.

Here's the song

When I die and they lay me to rest
Gonna go to the place that's the best
When I lay me down to die
Goin' up to the spirit in the sky
Goin' up to the spirit in the sky
That's where I'm gonna go when I die
When I die and they lay me to rest
Gonna go to the place that's the best
Prepare yourself you know it's a must
Gotta have a friend in Jesus
So you know that when you die
He's gonna recommend you
To the spirit in the sky
Gonna recommend you
To the spirit in the sky
That's where you're gonna go when you die
When you die and they lay you to rest
You're gonna go to the place that's the best
Never been a sinner I never sinned
I got a friend in Jesus
So you know that when I die
He's gonna set me up with
The spirit in the sky
Oh set me up with the spirit in the sky
That's where I'm gonna go when I die
When I die and they lay me to rest
I'm gonna go to the place that's the best
Go to the place that's the best

Four and twenty four

Sing a song of sixpence,
a pocket full of rye.
Four and twenty blackbirds,
baked in a pie.

Okay so it's twenty four in my case. I still like the song.
Soon, I will have four year old and twenty-four year old children. Though the twenty four year old isn't really considered a child anymore.
The four year old is my son and he adores his big sister.
Both of my children were a surprise to me. A very welcome surprise. My daughter came into my life in my youth and my son as I was older. They have each been a wonderful blessing to me. I am thankful for each of my children

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Forgiveness-- What the Bible says

This is always a real eye opener and it is always good to remember. Sometimes when I think I have forgiven someone, I haven't really fully forgiven them and something brings that to my remembrance. Tonight I thought about this topic in depth and decided to post about it. It's always good to refresh my mind.
If God can forgive US, can’t we forgive?? I know that forgiveness is hard. I struggle with forgiveness. Throughout the bible it speaks of God’s grace and mercy toward us. If God has grace, and mercy and forgiveness toward us, we should have it towards others. I’ve done bible studies on forgiveness. I think it’s one of the hardest things to do besides not gossiping.

Jesus commands us to forgive.

Matthew 6:14-16
14 “For if you forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you.
15 But if you do not forgive men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses.

Psalm 106:1
1 Praise the LORD!
Oh, give thanks to the LORD, for He is good!
For His mercy endures forever.

Mark 11:25-26
25 “And whenever you stand praying, if you have anything against anyone, forgive him, that your Father in heaven may also forgive you your trespasses.
26 But if you do not forgive, neither will your Father in heaven forgive your trespasses

Ephesians 4:31-32
31 Let all bitterness, wrath, anger, clamor, and evil speaking be put away from you, with all malice.
32 And be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God in Christ forgave you.

Colossians 3:12-15
12 Therefore, as the elect of God, holy and beloved, put on tender mercies, kindness, humility, meekness, longsuffering;
13 bearing with one another, and forgiving one another, if anyone has a complaint against another; even as Christ forgave you, so you also must do.
14 But above all these things put on love, which is the bond of perfection.
15 And let the peace of God rule in your hearts, to which also you were called in one body; and be thankful.

Matthew 18:21-22
21 Then Peter came to Him and said, “Lord, how often shall my brother sin against me, and I forgive him? Up to seven times?”
22 Jesus said to him, “I do not say to you, up to seven times, but up to seventy times seven. (SEVENTY TIMES SEVEN!!!!! That's a lot)

Luke 6:37-38
37 “Judge not, and you shall not be judged. Condemn not, and you shall not be condemned. Forgive, and you will be forgiven.
38 Give, and it will be given to you: good measure, pressed down, shaken together, and running over will be put into your bosom. For with the same measure that you use, it will be measured back to you.”

Nine Steps to Forgiveness

1.Know exactly how you feel about what happened and be able to articulate what about the situation is not OK. Then, tell a trusted couple of people about your experience.
2.Make a commitment to yourself to do what you have to do to feel better. Forgiveness is for you and not for anyone else.
3.Forgiveness does not necessarily mean reconciliation with the person that hurt you, or condoning of their action. What you are after is to find peace. Forgiveness can be defined as the "peace and understanding that come from blaming that which has hurt you less, taking the life experience less personally, and changing your grievance story."
4.Get the right perspective on what is happening. Recognize that your primary distress is coming from the hurt feelings, thoughts and physical upset you are suffering now, not what offended you or hurt you two minutes - or ten years -ago. Forgiveness helps to heal those hurt feelings.
5.At the moment you feel upset practice a simple stress management technique to soothe your body's flight or fight response.
6.Give up expecting things from other people, or your life , that they do not choose to give you. Recognize the "unenforceable rules" you have for your health or how you or other people must behave. Remind yourself that you can hope for health, love, peace and prosperity and work hard to get them.
7. Put your energy into looking for another way to get your positive goals met than through the experience that has hurt you. Instead of mentally replaying your hurt seek out new ways to get what you want.
8. Remember that a life well lived is your best revenge. Instead of focusing on your wounded feelings, and thereby giving the person who caused you pain power over you, learn to look for the love, beauty and kindness around you. Forgiveness is about personal power.
9.Amend your grievance story to remind you of the heroic choice to forgive.

The practice of forgiveness has been shown to reduce anger, hurt depression and stress and leads to greater feelings of hope, peace, compassion and self confidence. Practicing forgiveness leads to healthy relationships as well as physical health. It also influences our attitude which opens the heart to kindness, beauty, and love.


I wasn't talking with my daughter about this subject, but rather with a dear friend.
I have always said that communication is the key to any relationship, whether it is a spouse, child, friend,family or boss.
I have found message boards to be a breeding ground for miscommunication and a lack of communication. I know I have issues with communication or lack of communication and I try to work on it but it can be hard sometimes.

"The newest computer can merely compound, at speed, the oldest problem in the relations between human beings, and in the end the communicator will be confronted with the old problem, of what to say and how to say it." Edward R. Murrow

"The more elaborate our means of communication, the less we communicate."
Joseph Priestley

The information below has all been googled.
*One of the most important aspects of a successful relationship is effective communication between both parties. Lack of communication in a relationship can result in hasty decisions that can even lead to separation. We need to understand the reasons behind communication breakdown and how they can be avoided to ensure a fulfilling relationship.

The importance of healthy communication cannot be underestimated. In this sometimes emotionally stunted society of ours, we have downplayed the importance of interpersonal communication to the point where it affects not only our own health, but the health of others. (In some cases, it affects your health because others are unwilling to communicate with you.

Think about how many of the world's problems could be solved with healthy communication. Think about how many of your own problems could be solved by healthy communication. Yes, but there's the key word there - healthy communication.

We all communicate, it's how we communicate which is the issue. How many people do you know who refuse to speak to someone because of their pride, or because they don't want to get into a "confrontation."

But not all communication to work out problems wind up in 'aggressive confrontation.' Some people just - talk. Who in your circle would you have a better relationship with if you were able to more effectively communicate with them if ego would allow? Your parent, child, friend, spouse, co-worker? How much better would you feel? How much would airing things out help your own health and well-being? How much more would it allow you to effectively meet the challenges of everyday life if you didn't have emotions inside you simmering like a pressure cooker, or if you weren't in a constant state of battle?

Certainly not everyone is experienced at win-win communication, and chances are if you are, you will eventually run into someone close to you who is not. Everybody has different communication styles. What is yours?

*Non-assertion: The "inability or unwillingness to express thoughts or feelings." (Adler & Towne, 2004) This style stems from low self-esteem or lack of knowledge of other communication styles

One form of non-assertion is avoidance. This can be either physically removing yourself from someone's presence, or by simply refusing to talk about the issue by changing the subject, joking, etc.

Accommodating is also a form or non-assertion. Some people will simply 'give in' to avoid conflict. This is often a co-dependent's solution: putting other's needs above their own. ((

*Non-assertion is not always a bad thing. There are times which you have to 'pick your battles", for instance, where speaking out may cost you your job, or where the relationship either doesn't mean enough to you to expend the effort, or means so much that it's too small of an issue in the big picture. More often than not, however, people who are nonassertive either have too little confidence or don't know how to ask for what they want.

*Direct Aggression: Lashing out with attacks, whether it be verbal (character attacks, ridicule, etc.) or physical.This can be not only ineffective, but damaging to the target and the relationship.

Anybody who has suffered the effects of direct aggression can attest to the damaging effects it has on them as the target. Often it is committed by those who have such low self-esteem that they need to 'feel bigger' than the person opposite them. They do this by any type of attack that allows them to feel strong, when in reality, it weakens everything about the relationship they are communicating in.

The worst part of direct aggression is the 'domino effect' it produces. Words are powerful things. One aggressive comment can lead to defensive aggressive reactions. The idea is to allow your communicating partner to respond, not to push them into a corner by having to react.

*Passive Aggression: The act of 'pushing someone's buttons,' so to speak, with subtle verbal or non-verbal messages without confronting the person directly. Sometimes called "crazymaking" (Adler & Towne, 2003), this is one of the most difficult forms of communication to deal with if you are on the opposite end of it. Passive aggression stems from a great amount of hostility and a severe need to control one's own life without risking criticism. It may result in extraordinary resentment on the part of person at which the behavior is targeted, which can lead to a complete breakdown of the relationship, over a period of time.

Passive aggressiveness can come in many forms: people who avoid conflict altogether; those who say they understand your feelings but continue to act with the same intent; those who lay guilt trips on you; those who 'hit below the belt' with intimate knowledge they know will upset you; those who give you the 'silent treatment'; those who make a joke about everything and those who tell you they will help you, but sabotage you in some way. If confronted, the passive-aggressive person often just denies intent.

An example of passive aggressive behavior might be a person who tells you they will help you get a job interview because they know someone, who then subtly sabotages the meeting in some way.

Passive aggression is never a good option for long-term results and can severely damage individuals and relationships.

*Indirect Communication: Sending indirect messages through hinting, or a third party. This can be a way to avoid conflict by taking initiative, but without hostility, and might be a preferable option when one person wants to help the other "save face." (Adler & Towne, 2004) Indirect communication is one of the most common ways people try to convey messages.

How many times have you 'hinted' to someone that you are ready to leave their party early by saying you have to work the next day, without having to tell them you aren't having a good time? It saves face for them.

In the vein of avoiding confrontation, some people may send messages through other people. By making a comment about the target person to a third party, the target may or may not get the message but, if they do, they may feel that they have been 'backstabbed,' which starts a cycle of hostility which makes communication more difficult in the future.

While at times useful, the problem with indirect communication is that there is the risk that the intended target may not get the message. If the message is that important, a more direct, assertive, approach is necessary.

*Assertion: The ability of the communicator to express their thoughts and feelings in a clear manner which does not undermine or attack the other person. Delivering your message, expressing what you want and feel, in a non-judgmental manner can be one of the most effective ways to resolve a conflict. If done appropriately, it minimizes defensiveness in the other person, allows them to clearly understand what you are saying or asking for, and is usually your best chance of resolving conflict with "minimal damage." (Adler & Towne, 2004)

Everybody may be capable (or culpable) of all of these behaviors at some point in time. The question is, do you recognize it and change it when appropriate, and how do you handle the behavior when it is targeted at you? How best do you present yourself in an assertive, non-confrontational style? There are some things you can do:

*Respect Boundaries: If you know that something is a 'hot-button issue' don't throw it in their face. Disrespecting boundaries is one of the quickest ways to escalate a conflict.
*Stay Focused on the issue at hand: Don't bring up things from the past that have nothing to do with the current issue. This is very close to crossing boundaries. By staying focused you honor both you and your partner without mucking up the water. When you feel an issue veering off course, bring attention back around to the topic at hand.
*Actively Listen: Listening is one of the most important, and sometimes one of the hardest things you can do. Some of the problems people have with listening are: thinking about what they will say next instead of listening and responding; getting defensive; interrupting. When people feel they aren't being heard, they may feel that their feelings are being discounted and/or invalidated, which leads to more anger, and an escalation of the situation.
*De-escalate: If you see the situation heating up, speak in a calm tone of voice. Repeat back to them what they have said so they know you listened to them and so both of you have a clear understanding of the intent of their message. If things are getting too hot and you feel you cannot calm it down, then take a break. Don't storm out of the room, but calmly explain that you feel that things are too escalated and you are going to go into the other room so both of you can calm down. When you do leave, breathe.
*Empathize: Try to see things from their point of view. It doesn't mean you will agree with them, but if you at least can understand where they're coming from, you have a better chance to acknowledge & validate their feelings so that both of you can come to a solution.
*Use "I" messages: When speaking, use "I" messages rather than "you" messages. Don't say "You always make me feel so unimportant", say "When you forget to call when you won't be home for dinner, I feel unimportant." This way you are taking the responsibility for the feeling, but you are associating it with a behavior, rather than risking it sounding like an attack on them personally.
*Admit your mistakes: When you recognize that you've made a mistake -- admit it. T There is nothing more maddening than someone who refuses to take responsibility for their own actions. Admitting a mistake and apologizing for it is a sign of strength, not one of weakness. It will clear the air and allow both of you to focus on a solution.
*Change your response: One of the first rules of psychology is "if you want to change somebody else's behavior, change your own." In other words, if you respond differently, they will in turn change their behavior because they are not getting the response they expected. Many times, behavior is meant to do just that, elicit a certain response.

In rare cases you may run up against a person who is completely unwilling to communicate or is such a master manipulator that no matter what you do, they will find a way to start an argument with you, or make your life miserable. They may be so passive-aggressive that it just turns into 'crazy-making,' or they may simply flat-out refuse to acknowledge there's a problem and refuse to listen or discuss the possibility of it at all. In these cases what are you to do?

The broad answer is, "Take care of yourself." If you are being hurt by the situation, you need to take care of yourself, first and foremost. The method by which you do that, however, can only be found by your own introspection and assessment of how important that specific relationship is to you. If you are being hurt, and you have sincerely tried every option to stop the incoming behavior, you need to make some decisions about how important the relationship is to you.

But introspection is the start. To make the types of decisions you need to make in situations like these, you need to know yourself. Getting in touch with your own higher-self & spirituality has a healthy and calming effect on your life. Resolve to meditate, play, relax. Giving to yourself in a loyal, loving and devoted way can open up a communication process within yourself that may well protect you from psychic vampires as well as preventing you from becoming one.

Communication. It's fundamental. It's how we operate. By learning a few basic techniques, and by communicating with our own higher being, we can become more content, better equip ourselves to rise to the challenges of our everyday lives, and better communicate with others &/or understand how to deal with it, even when they won't.


Adler, Ronald, B., & Towne, Neil (2003). Looking Out Looking In. 10th ed. Belmont, CA: Wadsworth/Thompson Learning.

Adler, Ronald, B., Towne, Neil, & Proctor II, Russell F. (2003). Interplay. 9th ed. Oxford, NY: Oxford University Press.

When people or groups are in conflict, communication between them tends to get worse and worse. As a conflict escalates, people limit their direct contact with people on the other side, because such conflict is uncomfortable or threatening. They also tend to assume that they have "heard it all before," that there is nothing new to be learned from listening to what the opponent says or thinks. Thus, they tend to get their information from "internal sources"--from talking and listening to each other, and from rumors. Eventually all direct communication between parties may be cut off. Sometimes, communication is cut off in protest, as when an ambassador is recalled from a country in response to an act or statement which the host country made or did. Although this clearly exhibits displeasure, it does nothing to resolve the situation; rather it makes the chances of resolution more remote.

In describing the escalation process (or what they call the "spiral of unmanaged conflict,") Susan Carpenter and W.J.D. Kennedy (1988, p. 13) write "in the early stages of conflict, people talked with each other and exchanged opinions. But somewhere along the way public discussions turned to public debate. People are frustrated by the situation and angry at each other. They become intolerant of other points of view and lose interest in talking about perspectives other than their own. Listening to counterpoints is unpleasant because they have invested heavily in one side of the argument and this is not time for second thoughts. As a result, conversation between the parties stops, and information is used as a weapon to promote a position or win a point. Information that would lead to a solution no longer flows between the parties."

Deutsch (1973, p. 353) agrees, observing that in escalated conflicts, "available communication channels and opportunities are not utilized, or they are used in an attempt to mislead or intimidate the other. Little confidence is placed in information that is obtained directly from the other; espionage and other circuitous means of obtaining information are relied upon." Like rumors, such information collection process are highly prone to error and are very likely to escalate the conflict even further.

It's a fact of life. We all make mistakes. Do things we wish we hadn't. Say something we're ashamed of. Send a hateful e-mail to the wrong person. Gossip and get caught. The only way out of the predicament is to do the stand-up thing. Apologize.

Yet most people are surprisingly inept when it comes to taking responsibility for their own actions, and the attempt at apology actually can make the situation worse. Clumsy apologies may include:

*I'm sorry you misinterpreted my remarks.
*I'm sorry your feelings were hurt.
*I'm sorry you didn't understand that I was kidding.
*I'm sorry you took it so hard.
*This kind of non-apology stirs up trouble because the fault for the misunderstanding is being laid at the feet of the person who's been insulted, hurt, or treated uncivilly. He or she probably will respond angrily, and the cycle continues.

The key to a good apology is to accept culpability, not try to pass it off on the other person's extreme sensitivity, lack of insight, or inability to interpret correctly. The word that should follow, "I'm sorry" is not "you." The word that's needed is "I." Like this:

*I'm sorry I hurt you.
*I'm sorry I wasn't clear.
*I'm sorry I was so clumsy. I was kidding, but I didn't do it very well.
*I'm sorry I said what I did.
*I'm sorry I was thoughtless.
See how much better that is? Although it's hard to swallow our pride and admit that we made a big mistake, a prompt I-apology is likely to lead to forgiveness and a better relationship. A you-apology just prolongs the agony.

Gretchen Hirsch is a writer, independent editor, and speaker. Her latest book is "The Complete Idiot's Guide to Difficult Conversations." She is available at

You're welcome to use this article without modification. Please do not edit or cut it and please credit the author and URL.

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Monday, February 11, 2008


That's such an odd term, and I can't find anything on the net about it.
But I tried it and it seems to work. Long ago and far away, I belonged to a PCOS site.
On that site was information about darkening your bedroom.
That meant making your room totally dark. It's supposed to help with your body's cycle and your menstrual cycle and to help you sleep more restful at night or during the day.
We made sure no light came in our windows by using special material behind our drapes.
We also covered all the red and blue lights on our television and phone and TV.
We were sleeping in a very dark room and resting well and my cycles were very regular.
It really works and I believe I still sleep more restfully. We have been doing it for about six years or so and the dark room really comes in handy when my husband is working nights and sleeping day.
I also really worked well when my son was born because he shared our room with us for a year. He likes sleeping in the dark too.

Sometimes I forget..................

Sometimes I forget that God—Jesus Is always with me. Always

He is there when I am watching TV, or on the computer. Doing laundry, or my floors or vacuuming.
He is there when I shower, or bathe my son. He is there in times of trouble too. I know God sees every situation and why it happens. I know HE knows the outcome.
I know that God hears my prayers. I love that I can TALK to God and have HIM listen. God has the hairs on my head numbered—to me that is incredible. He Knew me before I was born and what path my life would take and what decisions I had the free will to make.
Sometimes I forget all that.
Deuteronomy 31:6
6 Be strong and of good courage, do not fear nor be afraid of them; for the LORD your God, He is the One who goes with you. He will not leave you nor forsake you.”
7 Then Moses called Joshua and said to him in the sight of all Israel, “Be strong and of good courage, for you must go with this people to the land which the LORD has sworn to their fathers to give them, and you shall cause them to inherit it.
8 And the LORD, He is the One who goes before you. He will be with you, He will not leave you nor forsake you; do not fear nor be dismayed.”

Psalm 139:11-15
13 For You formed my inward parts;
You covered me in my mother’s womb.
14 I will praise You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
Marvelous are Your works,
And that my soul knows very well.
15 My frame was not hidden from You,
When I was made in secret,
And skillfully wrought in the lowest parts of the earth.

Matthew 12:7
7 But the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Do not fear therefore; you are of more value than many sparrows.

Jeremiah 1:5
5 Before I formed you in the womb I knew you;
Before you were born I sanctified you;
I ordained you a prophet to the nations.”

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Today's lesson--OCD

As I mentioned earlier, my daughter was over again today. We went shopping for a bit and as usual we talked about a myriad of subjects. Today was obsessive-compulsive disorder. Now I am certainly no doc and I wouldn't dare to try to diagnose anyone ever, but I find these topics very interesting.
I see a little of OCD in my life but nothing alarming. SO, I googled OCD and this is what I came up with from the Mayo Clinic site. It's an interesting read. Enjoy.

Do you wipe off the doorknobs in your home each time someone touches them? Do you go to great lengths to avoid stepping on cracks in the sidewalk? Or do you feel compelled to wash your hands so often that they've become raw and chapped?

Feeling driven to perform such rituals over and over may indicate that you have obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD). If you have obsessive-compulsive disorder, ritualistic behaviors may literally take over your life. You have distressing, unwanted thoughts or images that don't make sense to you. These thoughts or images keep coming back despite your efforts to ignore them. You may strive to hide OCD from friends and co-workers for fear of being labeled "crazy."

But obsessive-compulsive disorder, a type of anxiety disorder, is probably more common than you think. And it can affect both adults and children. Because the obsessions and compulsions can be so hard to disregard, OCD can become disabling and chronic. But the good news is that treatment can help bring obsessive-compulsive disorder under control.

Signs and symptoms
Obsessive-compulsive disorder symptoms include both obsessions and compulsions. OCD symptoms can be severe and time-consuming. For instance, someone who feels that his or her hands have become contaminated by germs — an obsession — may spend hours washing them each day — a compulsion. The focus on hand washing may be so great that he or she can accomplish little else.

OCD obsessions are repeated, persistent, unwanted ideas, thoughts, images or impulses that you experience involuntarily and that appear to be senseless. These obsessions typically intrude when you're trying to think of or do other things.

Typical OCD obsessions revolve around:
*Fear of contamination or dirt
*Repeated doubts
*Having things orderly and symmetrical
*Aggressive or horrific impulses
*Sexual images

OCD symptoms involving obsessions may include:
*Fear of being contaminated by shaking hands or by touching objects others have touched
*Doubts that you've locked the door or turned off the stove
*Repeated thoughts that you've hurt someone in a traffic accident
*Intense distress when objects aren't orderly, lined up properly or facing the right way
*Images of hurting your child
*Impulses to shout obscenities in inappropriate situations
*Avoidance of situations that can trigger obsessions, such as shaking hands
*Replaying pornographic images in your mind
*Dermatitis because of frequent hand washing
*Skin lesions because of picking at the skin
*Hair loss or bald spots because of hair pulling

Compulsions are repetitive behaviors that you feel driven to perform. These repetitive behaviors are meant to prevent or reduce anxiety or distress related to your obsessions. For instance, if you believe you ran over someone in your car, you may return to the scene over and over because you just can't shake your doubts. You may even make up rules or rituals to follow that help control the anxiety you feel when having obsessive thoughts.

Typical compulsions revolve around:
*Washing and cleaning
*Demanding reassurances
*Repeating actions over and over
*Arranging and making items appear orderly

OCD symptoms involving compulsions may include:

*Washing hands until the skin becomes raw
*Checking doors repeatedly to make sure they're locked
*Checking the stove repeatedly to make sure it's off
*Counting in certain patterns

What causes obsessive-compulsive disorder isn't fully understood. Main theories include:

Some researchers believe OCD is a result of changes in your body's own natural chemistry.
Some researchers believe that OCD stems from behavior habits that you learn over time.
*Insufficient serotonin.
An insufficient level of serotonin, one of your brain's chemical messengers, may contribute to obsessive-compulsive disorder. Some studies that compare images of the brains of people who have obsessive-compulsive disorder with the brains of those who don't show differences in brain-activity patterns. In addition, people with obsessive-compulsive disorder who take medications that enhance the action of serotonin often have fewer symptoms.
*Strep throat.
Some studies suggest that some children develop OCD after infection with group A beta-hemolytic streptococcal pharyngitis — strep throat. Some research suggests that an antibody against strep throat bacteria sometimes mistakenly acts like a brain enzyme. This disrupts communication between neurons in the brain and may trigger OCD. However, these studies are controversial and more evidence is needed before strep throat can be blamed.

Risk factors
It was once thought that obsessive-compulsive disorder was a rare condition. But it's now known to be more common than many other mental illnesses. In fact, about 2.2 million Americans have obsessive-compulsive disorder, according to the National Institute of Mental Health.

Obsessive-compulsive disorder doesn't affect just adults. The disorder often begins during adolescence or early childhood, usually around age 10. In adults, OCD typically begins around age 21.

Several factors can increase the risk of developing obsessive-compulsive disorder, including:

*Family history. Having parents or other family members with the disorder can increase your risk of developing OCD. However, researchers haven't identified any genes responsible for obsessive-compulsive disorder.
*Stressful life events. If you tend to react strongly to stress, your risk may increase. This reaction may, for some reason, trigger the intrusive thoughts, rituals and emotional distress characteristic of obsessive-compulsive disorder.
*Pregnancy. Some studies show that pregnant women and new mothers are at increased risk, but it's not clear why. In these cases, OCD symptoms center mainly on thoughts of harming the baby.

When to seek medical advice
There's a difference between being a perfectionist and having obsessive-compulsive disorder. Perhaps you keep the floors in your house so clean that you could eat off them. Or you like your knickknacks arranged just so. That doesn't necessarily mean that you have obsessive-compulsive disorder.

In OCD, your quality of life can decrease dramatically as the condition dictates most of your days and you become consumed with carrying out compulsive behaviors and rituals. Most adults can recognize that their obsessions and compulsions don't make sense. Children, however, may not understand what's wrong. But the lives of both children and adults can be severely affected by OCD. Children may find it difficult to attend school, and adults may find it difficult to work. Relationships also suffer.

If your obsessions and compulsions are affecting your life, talk to your health care professional, such as your primary care doctor or mental health professional. It's common for people with OCD to be ashamed and embarrassed about the condition. But even if your rituals are deeply ingrained, treatment can help.

Screening and diagnosis
A mental health professional can diagnose obsessive-compulsive disorder after a thorough evaluation. Although there aren't any laboratory tests to diagnose OCD, your doctor may check for physical problems the condition may cause, such as dermatitis from frequent hand washing.

It's sometimes difficult to diagnose obsessive-compulsive disorder because it may resemble generalized anxiety disorder or other mental conditions. To help diagnose obsessive-compulsive disorder, your doctor will ask you questions about your obsessions, compulsions and emotional well-being and may talk to your friends and relatives about your behavior.

To be diagnosed with obsessive-compulsive disorder, someone must meet the criteria spelled out in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM). This manual is published by the American Psychiatric Association and is used by mental health professionals to diagnose mental conditions and by insurance companies to reimburse for treatment.

For OCD to be diagnosed, you must have either obsessions or compulsions, you must realize that these obsessions and compulsions are excessive or unreasonable, and they significantly interfere with your daily routine.

Obsessions must meet these specific criteria:
*Recurrent and persistent thoughts, impulses or images that are intrusive and cause distress
*The thoughts aren't simply excessive worries about real problems in your life
*You attempt to ignore or suppress these thoughts, images or impulses
*You recognize that these thoughts, images and impulses are a product of your own mind

Compulsions must meet these specific criteria:
*Repetitive behavior, such as hand washing, or repetitive mental acts, such as counting silently, that you feel driven to perform
These behaviors or mental acts are meant to prevent or reduce distress about unrealistic obsessions

Obsessive-compulsive disorder treatment can sometimes be difficult, and it may not offer a cure. However, OCD treatment can help you bring symptoms under control so that they don't rule your daily life.

OCD treatment has two main components: psychotherapy and medications.

A type of therapy called cognitive behavior therapy has been shown to be the most effective form of therapy for OCD in both children and adults. Cognitive behavior therapy involves retraining your thought patterns and routines so that compulsive behaviors are no longer necessary. One approach in particular is called exposure and response prevention. This therapy involves gradually exposing you to a feared object or obsession, such as dirt, and teaching you healthy ways to deal with it. Learning the techniques and new thought patterns takes effort and practice, but it's worth it. Most people with obsessive-compulsive disorder show improvement of signs and symptoms with cognitive behavior therapy.

Most people with OCD benefit from taking certain psychiatric medications. Some medications have been specifically approved by the Food and Drug Administration to treat OCD, such as the antidepressants clomipramine (Anafranil), paroxetine (Paxil), fluvoxamine and sertraline (Zoloft). However, many other antidepressant medications on the market may also be used to treat OCD off-label — that is, even if they haven't been specifically FDA approved for that use. Antidepressants may be helpful for OCD because they may help increase levels of serotonin, which may be deficient in OCD. All of these medications have side effects and safety concerns, and you may need to try several medications before finding one that's both effective and tolerable.

Obsessive-compulsive disorder is a chronic condition, which means it may be part of your life for the long term. However, psychotherapy, medications and self-care can help you control OCD symptoms so that you can live a normal life.

Self-care steps you can follow include:
*Sticking to your treatment plan, even if it's sometimes uncomfortable or challenging
*Taking your medications as directed and talking to your health care professionals about side effects or other concerns
*Joining a support group to share experiences with others in a similar situation
*Enlisting support of loved ones who can offer encouragement in tough times
*Learning about your disorder so that you understand the myths and realities
*Avoiding alcohol and illicit drugs as coping mechanisms
*Getting involved in social activities, rather than isolating yourself

E Bay Blankets part 2

My daughter was visiting today and she fixed this picture for me. I laughed because we were out while she was here and she called me to ask me what I wanted on this blanket.
So when I got home she showed me. This blanket is actually one of my favorites. I love red and just really enjoyed working on it. I believe I gave it to a grandma of someone I know.
I forgot to mention it but while my husband and I were out this afternoon I bought MORE yarn!! I wasn't going to buy yarn at all this year and I bought a LOT of yarn today. And it was fun. LOL

Saturday, February 09, 2008

An appropriate song......

A friend also posted this to her blog. I feel it is a perfect song for today.
So friend, I am taking a page from your blog!! Thankyou.

Johnny Nash
I Can See Clearly Now

I can see clearly now, the rain is gone,
I can see all obstacles in my way
Gone are the dark clouds that had me blind
It's gonna be a bright bright, bright bright
Sun-Shiny day.

I think I can make it now, the pain is gone
All of the bad feelings have disappeared
Here is the rainbow I've been praying for
It's gonna be a bright bright, bright bright
Sun-Shiny day.

Look all around, there's nothing but blue skies
Look straight ahead, nothing but blue skies

I can see clearly now, the rain is gone,
I can see all obstacles in my way
Gone are the dark clouds that had me blind
It's gonna be a bright bright, bright bright
Sun-Shiny day.

Friday, February 08, 2008

Unlocking the door

I have found the key to unlocking a door that has been closed for a long time.
It is a burden lifted and I thank God I found the key.
This closed door has caused many issues for many many people.
I only hope and pray that with this key will come healing and understanding.
Tonight I am thankful. Praise God

*Jeremiah 33:6
Behold, I will bring it health and healing; I will heal them and reveal to them the abundance of peace and truth.

*Psalm 33:4
For the word of the LORD is right,And all His work is done in truth.

*Proverbs 22:23-25
23 For the LORD will plead their cause,
And plunder the soul of those who plunder them.
24 Make no friendship with an angry man,
And with a furious man do not go,
25 Lest you learn his ways
And set a snare for your soul.

*Colossians 3:12-14
Character of the New Man

12 Therefore, as the elect of God, holy and beloved, put on tender mercies, kindness, humility, meekness, longsuffering; 13 bearing with one another, and forgiving one another, if anyone has a complaint against another; even as Christ forgave you, so you also must do. 14 But above all these things put on love, which is the bond of perfection.

*Ephesians 4:31-32
31 Let all bitterness, wrath, anger, clamor, and evil speaking be put away from you, with all malice. 32 And be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God in Christ forgave you.


Another favorite song

Collective Soul

Give me a word
Give me a sign
Show me where to look
Tell me what will I find
Lay me on the ground
Fly me in the sky
Show me where to look
Tell me what will I find
Oh, Heaven let your light shine down

Love is in the water
Love is in the air
Show me where to go
Tell me will love be there
Teach me how to speak
Teach me how to share
Teach me where to go
Tell me will love be there
Oh, Heaven let your light shine down

Thursday, February 07, 2008


My purpose of starting this blog was originally the Seven Things project. So I was just re-reading the beginning of my blog. It was fun to declutter my house and it really made a difference.
I had a few posts about curbside recycling. We still do that. We've done it all along and continue to do it.
We curbsided some shelves this past summer among other things. When we have larger items we generally put it out to the curb and almost all of the time someone stops for it. It's a great way to recycle.
I also learned to think about what I do with items I am getting rid of.
Does someone I know have a need for it? Can I donate it somewhere? Sell it?
It makes me think twice about what I have and how to find a new home for it. And it makes me think twice about bringing something into my house.

Thankful Thursday

Today I am thankful for:
* Health--my husband and son have been ill and it took a long time for them to be healthy, hubby still has a way to go with that though
* Friends--who understand
* My son--watching him grow and learn new things each day
* Sunshine in winter
* online bibles
* a clean house.
* Grace and Mercy from God

Psalm 51:1-6

1 Have mercy upon me, O God,
According to Your lovingkindness;
According to the multitude of Your tender mercies,
Blot out my transgressions.
2 Wash me thoroughly from my iniquity,
And cleanse me from my sin.
3 For I acknowledge my transgressions,
And my sin is always before me.
4 Against You, You only, have I sinned,
And done this evil in Your sight—
That You may be found just when You speak,
And blameless when You judge.
5 Behold, I was brought forth in iniquity,
And in sin my mother conceived me.
6 Behold, You desire truth in the inward parts,
And in the hidden part You will make me to know wisdom.

Chronological Bible?

Have you read a chronological bible? I am in the process of doing that right now and so far it's been pretty interesting. I'll update here as I go along.
I think I'm going to like it though. It's in order!!

Wednesday, February 06, 2008

Just STOP already!!!

I get at least a half dozen political phone calls a day.
I am TIRED of it!! I have taken to just not answering my phone if it comes up unkown.
They ask for money,and it's polls and more polls.
And to think another nine months of this, UGH.


Are you a narcissist?

My daughter and I were discussing this the other day. She is taking psychology classes and she often shares with me. I think we are all narcissistic to a degree, it’s when it gets out of hand that it is dangerous. I also think that if we look back through our lives and friendships, we can identify who has or had these characteristics. I found it astonishing at first. Then I was able to see how several of my friends, past and present, fit into the category. I did a little googling to find this info but I think it can be useful.
After reading quite a bit about this, the only way to get away from a narcissistic person is to just not have any contact with them ever again.

This was from one site I read:
How do you get a narcissist to leave you alone?
Leave them alone and ask God to protect you from them.

~~Does the following describe anyone you know?? Does any of this sound familiar to you?? Once you recognize the characteristics, it's almost like it jumps out at you and you say "that's it, now I finally understand"!!! And you know what?? It is so liberating to finally know and then know how to react to it!!

Someone who suffers from Narcissistic Personality disorder (NPD) has at least 5 of the following characteristics:

1. has a grandiose sense of self-importance (e.g., exaggerates achievements and talents, expects to be recognized as superior without commensurate achievements)
2. is preoccupied with fantasies of unlimited success, power, brilliance, beauty, or ideal love
3. believes that he or she is "special" and unique and can only be understood by, or should associate with, other special or high-status people (or institutions)
4.requires excessive admiration
5. has a sense of entitlement, i.e., unreasonable expectations of especially favorable treatment or automatic compliance with his or her expectations
6. is interpersonally exploitative, i.e., takes advantage of others to achieve his or her own ends
7. lacks empathy: is unwilling to recognize or identify with the feelings and needs of others
8. is often envious of others or believes that others are envious of him or her
9. shows arrogant, haughty behaviors or attitudes

Here are some more signs of Narcissistic Personality Disorder to look out for:

* Jealousy and possessiveness
* Excessive need to feel special, adored, loved, appreciated, or admired
* Rage attacks when you do not sufficiently meet his/her needs
* Controlling behaviors (trying to control how you spend your time, who you talk to, how you dress, etc.)
* Inflated self-esteem, or grandiosity (bragging, "fishing" for compliments)
* Dramatic, insecure behaviors
* Expecting you to take responsibility for making him/her feel better about him/herself
* Blaming you for behaviors or feelings (i.e., "YOU made me do this," or "YOU made me feel this way.")
* Not taking responsibility for angry behavior and justifying angry outbursts
* An attitude that demonstrates "the world revolves around me" and "you need to cater to my ideas, opinions, thoughts, and feelings."
* An unwillingness to reflect on his/her own behaviors

A list of words to describe a Narcissist:

Charming, arrogant, snob, name dropper, shallow, sly, self serving, assertive, socially poised, confident, hero, hero worshiper, bully, actor, verbose, cliquish, controlling, stud, vamp, God's gift to women or men, born leader, brain, charismatic, conniving, convincing, living in fantasy world, pathological liar, vain, superior, arrogant, brash, ego centric, unpleasant, condescending, power-seeking, devious, patronizing, nasty spoiled kid, impeccable manners, offish, driven, innovative, disruptive, jealous, clannish, cliquish, gossipy, best friend, worst enemy, effusive, complimentary, critical, back stabbing, selfish, self centered, self important, spotlight hog, always talks about them self, ignores other people's feelings, know it all, bully, liar, manipulator, always right, never apologizes, never acts grow up, Peter Pan, spoiled, child like, cold, effusive, intelligent, loves to talk about themselves, wants to be center of attention, wants the best office etc, Drama Queen, King Pin, has to keep up with the Jones, has to have latest or biggest or most expensive thing to impress others, romantic, cold hearted, hyper-sexual, not interested in sex, sadistic, unemotional, over reacts, angry, yells, screams, demands immediate recognition and service, preferential treatment, throws tantrums, over bearing, can switch from being super nice to nasty in a second, acts like a queen or princess if a woman, or like a super macho if a man, Fame junkies. They are obsessed with the fantasy of unlimited success, power, brilliance and ideal love and beauty. They only associated with important people. They lack affect, they often look into mirrors...

Narcissistic personality disorder: SPECIAL (5 criteria).

S: Special (believes he or she is special and unique)
P: Preoccupied with fantasies (of unlimited success, power, brilliance, beauty, or ideal love)
E: Entitlement
C: Conceited (grandiose sense of self-importance)
I: Interpersonal exploitation
A: Arrogant (haughty)
L: Lacks empathy

The stages of feeling victims experience.

1) The Roadkill Stage

This is when you finally hit bottom due to the experience with a Narcissist.

2) The Realization Stage

This is when the answers to the questions that have been plaguing you begin to get answered and you now know what it is you have been dealing with all this time. You begin to research everything you can find on Narcissism. You usually feel better that you know, but the sense of betrayal begins to hit you like a Mack truck. Unfortunately, you start to feel angry at yourself for letting it go on for so long.

3) The Anger Stage

This is when the full impact of what you went through hits home and all hell breaks loose! Anger is uncomfortable, but I think it is a necessary step towards healing. At first, it is like an erupting volcano, then it usually evolves in focusing on how to get through. If you don't let as much of the anger out at this stage, you will stay stuck for a longer period of time.

4) Taking Affirmative Action Stage

This is when you begin to learn to effectively focus your new-found knowledge into making life decisions. This is also the period where you begin to learn and practice techniques on how to protect yourself from the Narcissist. This is the stage where some decide on divorce, relocating, changing jobs, and lifestyle changes. This is also a time of great upheaval, because the Narcissist usually knows that the "gig is up" The Narcissist will fight you tooth and nail to win. This is a crucial stage in healing, because it is at this stage that the Narcissist will also try to "put on the charm" to return you to status quo. The Narcissist can be very vicious at this stage. It is usually best to have as little contact as possible with the Narcissist. It is also the time to continue to learn about how to continue to protect yourself and continue to focus on you and your healing.

5) The Fall-Out Stage

This is when you become more comfortable in your knowledge of how to deal with the Narcissist, where you begin to forgive yourself, where you begin to feel better about yourself and your abilities. You are actively planning your future, getting to know yourself again, and you notice how much better physically and emotionally you feel out of the presence of the Narcissist. The fog of Narcissism has lifted somewhat and you begin to get your confidence back. While this is happening, you are still experiencing the waves of the past stages, it seems to come in cycles that diminish in intensity over time.

6) The Mirroring Stage

Not everyone goes through this stage, it is a personal decision. This is when you mirror the Narcissists behavior back at them, effectively scaring them off! I was particularly fond of this stage, because it allowed me to siphon off the anger and project it back to the person who caused it. It is effective in scaring off the Narcissist, but sometimes it takes many sessions of "mirroring" before the stubborn Narcissist finally "gets it". Unfortunately for many victims, many Narcissists aren't willing to accept that it is OVER and continually try to get back under the victims skin using guilt, fear, pity, threats, violence and financial abuse. Many Narcissists keep "coming back for more NS."

Depending on how you handle the Narcissist in this stage, it will depend on how long this stage lasts. If you, even for a moment give the Narcissist ANY NS at all, show any vulnerability, sympathy, fear, or confusion, it will put you back a few stages and you will have to work your way through again. This cycle can happen many times.

7) Realization and Apathy

Once you effectively block all means of communication with the Narcissist as efficiently as possible, protect yourself from them as much as you can, gain knowledge and confidence in yourself, you reach a stage of realization that there was nothing you could have done to help or prevent the nightmare that you just lived through. You start looking for effective ways to manage your life, work towards your new future and close the door in the face of the Narcissist. The most effective way that I have found to do this is with APATHY. Apathy works. It requires very little work on your part. You display no outward emotions towards the Narcissist, who seems to forever be trying to re-enter your life for the coveted NS, you yawn frequently whenever they have something to say, you outright IGNORE their existence as if they died.

Eventually, in a sense they do die, because without your attention, without your sympathy, without your guilt, without your adoration, without your anger, and without your fear, they do wither away and die. If there is nothing for them to affirm their existence through you, and they cannot exist around you. It is not to say that they won't try. They want to be able to evoke an emotional response in you. If you don't give them any, then eventually, like Pavlov's dog they figure out the bowl is empty and move on to the next victim. This stage can take some time, because as we know, the Narcissist does not give up on precious supply sources easily.

What is the difference between criticism from a friend or colleague and a Narcissist's attack? Most people who want to help you, who care for you, will be polite and broach the subject of an injury or insult with care. A Narcissist doesn't want to warn you, because they don't want you to be prepared, they go for the jugular, jumping on whatever insult they feel you have given them, not letting you explain or prepare a defense. They are not 'polite' though they will protest they are the most polite people in the word; their actions give them away.

The attack of a Narcissist is usually unexpected, abrupt and blind sides you. At some time in the past or present they have been humiliated by something you said, the way you looked at them or even by your achievements (this can be how you look, your house, your vacation and even your intelligence). They keep grievances for a long time, letting them simmer and then springing it on you when you least expect it, or when you are unprepared. (The most telling time this takes place is during the reading of the will, when you find out what you did when you were 6 years old that peeve them.)

You have to play court to them, pay attention to them, compliment them - they perceive you as a source of narcissistic supply/attention. If not they will make you pay. They keep a list of insults, slights, things you did or didn't do, and when they think you are weak and vulnerable, they will attack you. They are cowards, so don't expect a honest dialog, instead they will vent their spleen on you, threaten you and make you apologize to them.

You have several choices; you can excuse yourself gracefully, putting them at a disadvantage in the sense that you are noble and open minded compared to them, but it also makes you look weak in their eyes, so be careful how you do this. This diffuses the situation, and it makes you aware that you are dealing with a Narcissist - read the rest of this site for more information.

You can deny everything, because most of it makes no sense to you anyway, being a childish rant. This will probably make them angrier, because you are denying their view point, their mad outlook at life.

Or you can counter attack. The last strategy works only if you know about the N attack before hand. They want you to be unprepared and vulnerable, so that their attack works. If you provoke them on purpose make sure you have lots of facts, figures and witnesses. They will never forgive you for besting them. A narcissist will only allow someone they admire to criticize them. Narcissists will never attack someone they admire - it would be like attack themselves as they project their fantasies onto their hero/mirror. Only when their hero falls into disgrace will you hear them criticize their hero.

After the Narcissists attack you may feel horrible, physically abused, because they have taken all the trash in their minds, and dumped it on you. Projecting and transference. Think of a childish tantrum. If you can laugh about the attack, then you are OK. Narcissists make you develop good boundaries and defenses. If you let them get to you, let their words, insults and accusations become more and more real and logical, then they have won. They are trying to instill in you an introject; i.e. doubt, fear and self loathing.

The best thing to do is to laugh at them, in private, because they hate to be ridiculed in public. Think of the tale of the Emperor's new cloths, think also of what the story never tells you, what happened to the little boy? Was he beheaded like critics who peeved the queen in Alice in Wonderland? Narcissists hate to be put on the spot but they love putting others on the spot. They are playing a game, because they are not really hurt, they are protecting their mirror image that they admire, and that you some how tarnished.

Remember, they have no real feelings, it is all an act. They are not 'hurt', their image is damaged. They have no feelings, because if they did they would care about your feelings, which is obvious they don't based on why they attacked you in the first place..

Word Cloud # 4

I love these word clouds.

Tuesday, February 05, 2008

Message board ruminations

I’ve learned a lot about message boards. I joined my first message board in 2001. The following thoughts are a conglomeration of almost all of the message boards I have been a part of. My husband agrees that there are a ton of issues on message boards too. He belongs to several woodworking boards that have had issues similar to mine.
Most message boards are for three reasons:
1. Support
2. Exchange of information
3. Advice
What I have also learned about message boards is that Communication is difficult. It is difficult to hear the tone on a message board, people are not always clear in their typing, and I believe that can lead to:
1. Gossip
2. Miscommunication
3. Misunderstanding
4. Hurt feelings.
5. Assumptions
My thought has always been if you have something to ask someone, ask the person instead of assuming something. That always leads to even more issues.

I have seen miscommunication and lack of communication ruin message boards. I have seen many many people hurt by actions that resulted from a lack of communication or miscommunication and gossip. How can you resolve something if you don’t talk to people? How can you come to a conclusion if you don’t talk to people? Instead what I have seen is gossip and lack of communication. I have seen people that feel inadequate make up gossip that has been hurtful. I was the recipient of nasty gossip at one time. Apparently I made someone feel inadequate with my housekeeping/childcare skills and of my crocheting. This was another mother too.But this woman didn’t come to me, instead she started hurtful gossip about me!! And other women that I thought were friends joined in. Did one of those women come to me to discuss any issues??? No, they didn’t.

It truly is baffling to me. When did trust, confidence and communication become SO hard it just stops? Why does this happen among friends? Is it so hard to just e mail or PM or IM someone to clear something up?? To communicate??

Then there is the gossip. I know that I struggle with gossip on a daily basis. The Bible has a lot to say about gossip. Here is just one verse:

1 Timothy 5:13
*And besides they learn to be idle, wandering about from house to house, and not only idle but also gossips and busybodies, saying things which they ought not.*

Just to be crystal clear on the subject of gossip—I have done my share and above that of gossiping. It is quite possibly the hardest issues to work on. It’s so easy to just say something. But I try to work on it daily and I believe I am making progress.

With recent events on message boards lately, I have found my heart is not really in it anymore. I need to spend less time on the internet anyway.