Today's The Day...Grandbaby THREE Is A ____?

Well, today I returned to a little more normalcy.  Mother is tucked away cozily in her own home, I went to the office to work, ran some errands, enjoyed a cup of Starbucks during a mani/pedi...AND found out what Poppi and Ya Ya's Grandbaby Number THREE will be...

                                                                           It's A BOY!

Ahhh...A little boy to throw into the mix with Parker Ann and Holli Reese.  He might disturb their tea parties and cause some mischief (especially if he's anything like his dad...), but watch out, they just might serve you up some potty water too!  What fun and great news for our BIG, FAT FAMILY...God continues to bless us as it continues to grow.



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As Our Parents Age...

It is not easy watching one's parents age.  It seems that they are just bopping around, all full of life and then one day...when you were busy with life, yourself,  and not paying attention...they suddenly got much older and more fragile.  I remember when this happened to my mother.  Oh, it wasn't the white hair because she had been sporting that for years.  It was the the way that she began to slow down.  Having been active (especially outdoors...) for the entirety of her life, the slowness was an indicator that she was visibly becoming older.  And then one day I noticed her posture bent over a bit as she slowly moved around.  And then came the cane and occasionally the use of a walker.  Age appears to "sneak" up on us with subtle warnings that we choose to simply ignore until it is staring us right in the face.  And faced with an aging parent is not easy.  Not easy on them because they constantly reminisce about how their life used to be and not easy on their children because they are not the way they used to be.  It brings to our attention the reality of our mortality.

My mother is 84 years old and still lives by herself.  My sister lives next door to her, so it is comforting to know there is someone close by.  For a few weeks now, my mother has not been feeling well and we have been on a mission to find out why.  Last Tuesday she went for a doctor's appointment and I got a call that they needed to admit her to the hospital.  I rushed down there and waited while they finished up a CAT scan and then watched as my mother's frail body was wheeled around the corner in a wheelchair.

The most immediate concern they found was that she was critically anemic and needed a blood transfusion.  When both my sister and I left the hospital that evening,  around 10 p.m., they still had not started the transfusion.  When I got back to the hospital the following morning, the transfusion had been completed and her color looked much better and the doctors were ready to proceed with more tests to find out exactly what was wrong with her.  After doing a couple of tests and preparing for another, Mother went into A-Fib.  She was moved to the cardiac floor and a cardiologist was called in.  Yesterday, he decided to shock her heart back into rhythm.  Now, this was more than a little frightening for me, although I knew the cardiologist was one of the best in town.  Surprisingly, the procedure did not take long to perform and Mother seemed to perk up and feel much better the rest of the day.  There was still one test pending but due to her weakened state, we decided that it would be best to wait for a couple of weeks and have it done as an outpatient.  And so, I wait today to see if she will be released from the hospital. 

It has been an 8 day hospital stay and my mind has been forced to go where I would really not choose for it to go.  It is not easy seeing one's parent lay in a hospital bed, helpless.  It is not easy to be the one who now must make decisions for them.  It is a responsibility that does not even compare to that of becoming a parent to one's own children.  But it is a responsibility,  nevertheless,  and one that many adult children have.  As I walked through the halls of the hospital to get to my mother's room daily, I often noticed elderly patients sitting in their rooms alone.  No one came to see them in the hours that I remained at my mother's bedside.  And this was sad. I wondered if they even had anyone who could come or if those people merely chose not to.  We must do and face things in life that are not pleasant; things that we would rather not see.  But sooner or later something happens that forces us to take the blinders off and face reality.  And the reality is that we are given the gift of life on a moment by moment basis and should enjoy it with those we love, for they will not always be around for us to do so.  Embrace the moment...embrace life...live it to the fullest!


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Will Grand Baby Number THREE Be A HE Or SHE?!

As we enjoy Parker Ann and anxiously await Holli Reese's arrival, "Baby 3" is well on its way too!  As a matter of fact, NEXT WEDNESDAY we will find out if "Baby 3" is going to be a SHE or HE.  And to announce this, something special came in the mail for us today...






Quickly opening this piece of mail, THIS is what we found...





                                                                        What will it
                                                                             BEE?
                                            Be the first to find out if Baby Rogenmoser is
                                                                        a he or she...

                                                      We will open Envelope A or B?
                                           Join us on Wednesday, January 30th at 5:00 p.m.
                                                            to open a secret envelope!
                                                Wait by your phone for a ring or a ding
                                                           instructing which envelope
                                                                holds the right thing!





                                                               NOW...I have to WAIT...
                                                          And not open those envelopes...





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I Bought New Yarn This Weekend...HAPPY, HAPPY, HAPPY!

At the risk of sound a little bit...OK, a lot like Si Robertson from the popular reality series, "Duck Dynasty", I'm going to use his catch phrase, "Happy, Happy, Happy!" to describe how I feel about my new yarn purchases this past weekend.

Robby and I woke up Friday morning and decided to hit the road to Katy, Texas.  Katy is a suburb of Houston and also where my cousin Gayle lives with her husband.  We were just wanting to get out of town, visit with family a little and, of course, begin the search for my newest "Mother of the Groom" dress for Ryan and Allison's June wedding.  Just across the street from Gayle's house is a great little yarn shop (www.yarntopia.net) where they not only offer scrumptious yarns but also classes and "sit and knit groups".  As usual, when I walked in I said, "Oh, how I wish we had a shop like this close to me...(sigh)."  Followed by, "But, perhaps it's a good thing that we don't because I would never get anything else done!"  Anyway, I purchased a couple of new really unique yarns and even got a free pattern.



This is the yarn that I bought to work up the free pattern above.  This yarn is called FEZA, Alp Oriental and has a very interesting story behind it.  It is made in Turkey by the housewives of men who are unemployed; it is a tied yarn which when worked up lends itself to a very eclectic look, like something you might find in an Anthropologie store.

This yarn is also very arsty looking, with all sorts of ribbons in various colors added in with the yarn.  I intend to work this up with another cream colored yarn, alternating between the two in a simple stitch pattern so the beauty of this wonderful yarn won't be lost amongst the complexity of a pattern.

Gayle also knits and I also ended up with a couple more patterns from her stash that I can't wait to get started on as well.  One would think I came home with a pot of gold and to me, I felt like I had.  Sweet tea and naps might make Si "Happy, Happy, Happy!", but Yarn does it for me!  Ahhh...it's the simple things; truly, it is!

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My Thyroid Journey: Losing Weight and Getting Fit

After my diagnosis of hypothyroidism I had to get my medication adjusted to the proper dosage before I could concentrate on and get serious about losing some weight and getting fit.  Having always been a fitness nut, the symptoms of this condition (before treated) left me tired and with no desire to even get up off of the couch most days.  Once I was put on Synthroid and my dosage was adjusted properly, I began to get some of my former energy back...I was ready to tackle getting fit, which included losing 20 pounds!

Losing weight for anyone is not an easy task.  OK...I'll take that back.  Men do tend to lose weight much easier and more quickly than women.  That is just an observation of mine and yes, it stinks but since there is nothing that can be done about that fact, we women must just get up and get going to do what works best for us.  With hypothyroidism, I find that diet, exercise and discipline all go hand in hand.  The first thing I did to help achieve my goals was to get back into a fitness routine that worked for me.

When looking for a good fitness routine, it is very important to find something that you actually enjoy doing.  I knew that daily cardio was necessary not only to help me lose those extra pounds but also for my general, overall health, so I decided to ride the stationary bike for 30 minutes a day, 5-6 days a week.  After riding the bike, I began attending yoga classes again 4-5 days a week.  I had always loved yoga but before I was on medication for my hypothyroidism I didn't feel well enough to go any more.  One of the things that it affected was my balance,  and for me this was a very frustrating aspect of the condition.  Once on my medication, this symptom went away and I was able to go back to yoga classes.  Now, for those of you who think yoga is easy, let me assure you that it is a very good work-out.  As I became physically stronger and my body once again became accustomed to working out, I also added a weekly Pilates class.  With all of this activity under my belt, it was time to start on the diet part of this regiment.

Even though I was working out diligently and eating fairly well, I found that I was not losing any weight.  I needed to commit to this diet thing.  And so, the week before Christmas I decided to go on a sugar detox.  My husband asked, "What kind of person does that to themselves at Christmastime?!"  Well, it would be a test of my willpower, for sure.  But I was ready to jump to the next level and what better time to do that than the present?  For many reasons, I think that overindulgence in sugar can be toxic to our bodies and very addictive as well.  Now, let me interject here that I do not push my beliefs regarding this on others, including my own family members.  I am merely stating what I believe, my experiences and what has worked for me. The best way for me to get the sugar out of my body would be to do what I like to call a "Sugar Detox".  To do this, I chose the "South Beach Diet" as my guide...






This little book is a wonderful guide that explains the glycemic index and how fluctuations in sugar levels effect one's body.  I needed to get off of the sugar roller coaster for many reasons, personally.  Getting down to my proper weight and BMI, I felt would do several things for me:
1.  Help to stabilize my hormone levels
2.  Keep muscle pain and head aches away
3.  Give me more energy

Now, giving up sugar takes a real effort; there is sugar in so many products!  The first thing one needs to do when getting sugar out of their system is to eliminate all processed foods.  I began to eat fresh produce and lean cuts of meats.  I only eat fish, turkey and chicken, but you can also have other lean cuts of meat too.  For the first two week, all fruit must be eliminated as well.  Although fruit has natural sugars in them, it is important to detox from ALL sugars at first and then add the good carbs back into your diet SLOWLY.  During this two week detox period, you might have some withdrawal symptoms since sugar is a very addictive substance.  Having some headaches and shakiness are not uncommon, but should pass within a few days; THEN, you begin to feel better and have more energy.

Well, I survived the first two weeks, including Christmas!  And once I began to feel the effects of a sugarless body, I was addicted to something new... staying off of sugar!  It has been about a month and I am half way to my weight loss goal, having dropped a little over 10 pounds.  I feel more energetic and am able to work out more intensely and the amazing thing is that I am not having all of the muscle soreness that I once had.  YES, I had some withdrawal symptoms for about the first three days, but instead of reaching for a piece of candy like I once would have done, I reached for a handful of nuts or cheese and guess what...it worked!  It stabilized my symptoms.

I am not saying that eliminating sugar from one's diet is an easy task, in fact it can be difficult at first.  However, if you are serious about not only dropping weight, but more importantly getting healthy from the inside out then give this a try.  Make it a life style change for the better!


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It's Winter, It's Summer...No, WAIT! It's Winter Again

There's an old saying here in Louisiana, "If you don't like the weather, just wait a couple of days...it's sure to change!"  This saying could not be more true and these past couple of week have been a testament to that.  Last week it rained...and rained...and rained some more...HEY!  Even the doxies were miserable and crossing their short legs, not wanting to go outside to potty.

                  This is the bridge on the road where I live.  The water is just at the top of it.

            The overflow went over the road and this is what I had to drive through to get out.

                No, this is not a lake or pond; it is some poor farmer's field that flooded.

Friday, the sun finally poked its head out as Robby and I headed down to New Orleans to visit with David and Ryan and see the Broadway production of "Jersey Boys".  As I said, the sun was shining when we left, but we drove right back into the rain only about an hour down the road (sigh...).  By the time we arrived in New Orleans, the rain had stopped but WOW!...the heat and humidity was overwhelming down there.  Saturday found the sun out and the temperatures HOT!  After lunch at a Po-Boy place down on Magazine Street, Robby and I headed over to The Mahalia Jackson Performing Arts Center to see "Jersey Boys"...






I sure do miss the Saenger Theatre that was damaged by Katrina, but the grounds surrounding The Mahalia Jackson Performing Arts Center are beautiful.







                                           Cute hubby waiting for the show to start with me!

OK...before I go any further, let me tell you how WONDERFUL "Jersey Boys" was!  If you ever get the chance to see it, DO SO!  It is a show about Frankie Valli and The Four Seasons; how they came to be and the music was absolutely FANTASTIC!  It was such a fun show, with the audience at times clapping along to the songs, tapping their feet and dancing in their seats.

After the show, Robby and I went out to eat and retired for the evening.  Before we headed back Sunday, David met us for breakfast at our new favorite breakfast place in New Orleans, "The Canal Street Bistro".  On our way home, we decided to stop in Baton Rouge to look for me a dress for Ryan and Allison's wedding.  When we went into the Mall it was hot.  About an hour later, as we left, it was pouring rain (again...) and FREEZING COLD! (ugh...)

When Robby and I to home, we walked in and flipped the air conditioning back to heat once again and started the fireplace.  Today it is raining and the high here is 37 degrees.  That is cold by anyone's standards but especially by ours here in Louisiana.  I am so thankful that our winter only lasts a couple of months because this weather stinks!  Oh well...I guess for now the doxies and I will just stay inside snuggled by a warm fire (at least for today!)























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Books I Am Reading Or Have Read: Rizzoli and Isles

Long before "Rizzoli and Isles" was a television series, I found Tess Gerritsen's, "Rizzoli and Isles" book series.  I absolutely LOVE the show, by the way.  And, although the casting isn't true to what the characters should look like according to the book...I REALLY LIKE THEM!  While the show tends to have a little humor (which I think works well for the series...), the books are a bit more serious.  They are interesting, quick reads that I think you will enjoy.  Below I have listed all of the books in the Rizzoli and Isles series:

1.  The Surgeon
2.  The Apprentice
3.  The Sinner
4.  Body Double
5.  Vanish
6.  The Mephisto Club
7. The Keepsake
8. Ice Cold
9.  The Silent Girl
10. Last To Die

Over the holidays I read "Ice Cold", "The Silent Girl" and "Last To Die"; I recommend reading these books in order because the characters and relationships develop as the series continues.  Pick up the "Rizzoli and Isles" series are start reading it TODAY!  I know that you won't be disappointed, in fact, I believe you will become as addicted to reading them as I am.  Hurry up, Tess and write another one!!!

                                                                     HAPPY READING!
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The "Wish Book"

Whenever I was a child growing up...in the day before kids got everything they wanted, when they wanted it...there was the "Wish Book".  Each fall, spring and Christmas, J.C. Penney, Montgomery Ward and Sears would put out their seasonal catalogs.  I loved the day these came in the mail and can remember holding it tightly to my chest as I made my way from the mailbox to the house, where I laid on the rug in the den and flipped through the pages..."wishing".  I would think of Christmas and my birthday and what I wanted for those occasions.  I knew some things might be a possibility and well...some were simply "wishful thinking".  And I didn't just look through those catalogs that one time, they were worn out from turning the pages and marking my favorite things.  Although, these days, my mailbox is usually filled with catalogs of some sort, there is still a couple of time during the year that my favorite "Wish Book" comes in the mail.  Last week was one of those times and was I ever giddy!

My favorite "Wish Book" these days is the seasonal Nordstrom catalog.  It comes along at just the "perfect" time!  The spring catalog come out just as Christmas is over and it is cold outside and people are getting tired of wearing coats and dreams of warmer temperatures and sandy beaches are dancing in their heads.  The fall catalog is timed just as well, introducing individuals to the lovely fall palate that is to come when we are still sweltering from the heat of the summer.  All I can say is, "Thanks, Nordstrom...you really made my day!"

This catalog will lay on my kitchen counter where I will continue to look through it for the next weeks and months.

Oh, how these lovely, soft mint colors make me think of spring with green grass, sunny days and birds singing.

                    Did I mention that shoes are my weakness?!  I simply LOVE these flats...

                                      OH MY GOODNESS...And these cute wedged shoes!

   How cute is that little blazer, not mention the entire outfit that is put together on this page?

OK...STOP right here!  I cannot resist seeing the new colors that Bobbi Brown has come out with each new season.  After seeing this, I ran down to the nail shop and had my nails polished a pretty pink!

                                                       Layered gold...Need I say more?!

OK...I could go on and on, but I think you get the picture.  I've spent a week "wishing" and it has been gloriously fun.  NOW...I DO have a birthday coming up in February (hint, hint, hint...) and what I would like this year is gift cards to Nordstrom!







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