Sunday, December 14, 2014

Ten Things that Make Me Happy: #5

I looove ice cream, especially Haagen Dazs coffee ice cream.  Feeling lonely, sad, under the cream cheers me.  Feeling happy, celebratory, cream adds to the celebration.  I grade airports by whether they have a Ben and Jerry's in the concourse I'm in.  I actually found a Haagen Dazs shop at DFW and ate a scoop of coffee cream for breakfast.  I've eaten gelato in Italy, sorbet in France.  I've eaten Blue Bell pumpkin spice at Thanksgiving peppermint at Christmas.  Nothing compares to coffee.  I highly recommend it, but I do suggest you not binge on it like I do.  I can easily finish a pint in a sitting.  Not good for the waistline but perfect for your spirits.  Enjoy.  And check out the Haagen Dazs gelato commercial on YouTube.

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Quote for the Week

Courage is fear holding on a minute longer.
General George S. Patton

Sunday, December 7, 2014

Ten Things that Make Me Happy #4

When I was a kid, I was afraid of cats.  That changed many years later when my daughter, who was out on the street training her dog to heel, heard a little meow behind her and found a small tabby kitten who was obviously lost.  We brought him inside and gave him some milk, and the next day I took him to work with me, hoping that someone would take him home.  But by the end of the day I'd fallen in love and he came home with me.  We named him Ringo and he was the first in a long line of wonderful cats who shared our home. 
My beloved Toby, a tuxedo cat who comforted me through my husband's illness and my widowhood, died last year, I said I didn't want to think about another cat. After a Sunday brunch for my birthday my daughter remarked that she'd like to go and visit an dog adoption place whose director she knew.  Right next door was...surprise...a cat adoption place.  She suggested I go in and look around and that's how I met Mango, the newest love of my life.  (He had me at "meow.")
As you can see, he's an orange cat, hence the name he came with, and he likes to roll over on his back, put up his paws and meow.  That's how he lets he know he's hungry.  Like most orange cats, he's very friendly.  He's pretty cuddly, too.  He'll lie in the crook of my arm purring and reach a paw up to touch my face.  So sweet.
So once again I have a cat in my life to keep me company, make me laugh and seemingly on his own, support the company that makes Fancy Feast cat food.
Take care, and stop back next week for #5.

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Website Review: Writing it Real

Writing It Real, website of Sheila Bender, is a treasure trove of information for writers.  Sheila offers articles, videos, contests, personal coaching and (my favorite) classes on writing.  I've taken her personal essay class three times.  It's on-line so I can take it in my pajamas, with no make-up and my cat on my lap on a bad hair day.  Sheila has a unique style of critique for her students to follow as they read one another's writing:
1. List "Velcro words--words or phrases from the essay that stuck with you;
2. Mention what you liked about the essay, how it affected you;
3. List questions that may guide the writer in rethinking or adding to the essay.
Whether you're a beginning writer or one with extensive experience, you'll find something of value in this website.

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Quote for the Week

                              Enthusiasm is contagious.  Be a carrier.    Susan Rabin

Sunday, November 30, 2014

Ten Things that Make Me Happy #3

This is my granddaughter Gabriella on her sixteenth birthday.  She's the light of my life, and was from the moment she was born.  I swore I would not watch the way...but I agreed to come in for a few minutes.  In the room were my son, my daughter-in-law's mother and her sister.  If they could view the birth, I thought, so could I, but I sat down on the floor, just in case I felt faint.  I didn't.  I felt awed, euphoric...I'd witnessed a miracle. 

Ralph and I went out for lunch and came back in the afternoon.  And what was my first question after I'd made sure everyone was fine?.  I wanted to know her Apgar score.  You can tell from that I work with small children.  Her score was 9, very high. and I went back to the room reassured.

From that day on, Gabby has been one of my greatest joys.  She's smart (of course.  What else would a grandmother say?)  To my delight (I'm a speech pathologist, after all), she started talking early.  Not surprisingly, her first word was "cat." 

Early on, she showed a great imagination and often made up stories.  When her grandfather was hospitalized with leukemia. she wrote stories for him.  One of his last wishes was to see Gabriella before he died.  "I hope she won't forget me," he said after her visit.  When I repeated that to her several months after he died, Gabriella said, "Of course I won't forget him.  I loved him."  How touched he would have been at that remark.

Gabriella is not only smart, but she's perceptive, empathetic...and also stubborn at times and she has become a typical teenager. I'm enjoying watching her grow up.  No, she isn't perfect, but she's fun...and she's MY granddaughter, and I love her more than I can say.

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Quotes for the Week of Thanksgiving

If the only prayer you said in your whole life was, "thank you," that would suffice. ~Meister Eckhart

 Thanksgiving was never meant to be shut up in a single day. ~Robert Caspar Lintner

We can only be said to be alive in those moments when our hearts are conscious of our treasures. ~Thornton Wilder

Give thanks for unknown blessings already on their way. ~Native American Saying

To speak gratitude is courteous and pleasant, to enact gratitude is generous and noble, but to live gratitude is to touch Heaven. ~Johannes A. Gaertner

A thankful heart is not only the greatest virtue, but the parent of all the other virtues. ~Cicero

Nothing is more honorable than a grateful heart. ~Seneca

All that we behold is full of blessings. ~William Wordsworth

Not what we say about our blessings, but how we use them, is the true measure of our thanksgiving. ~W.T. Purkiser

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