Winter Weekend

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Winter weekend

Winter Weekend

So it is Friday and very frigid here in suburban Chicago! At the moment as I am writing, the recorded temperature is -4 F !!! A severely cold weekend is ahead.

I hope my experience early this morning in not a predictor of how my weekend is going to go.

To my surprise at 6 am when I came downstairs to turn on the coffee pot, I felt a gust of cold air coming at me from our kitchen. I thought a window had broken but found our back door completely wide open and our dog who sleeps in there, no where in sight. As I leaned out the door, I spotted her just to my right eating ice and snow which she has a habit of doing these days. Hobbling into the house she took off upstairs to get my husband up. I truly expected her to be frozen to death and my heart paused for a second before I caught that welcome glimpse of her. Mind you it was pitch dark out at 6 am.

Immediately, I checked the water faucet closest to the open door and it had a drip of ice coming from it…not a good sign, frozen pipe possibility? I then checked the thermostat and it flashed in my face, 66 F!

How long was the door wide open??? Don’t know for sure, I thought while putting on my puffer jacket so I could begin making breakfast. My husband has to go out in this at that moment thinking it would be nice if I put my Uggs on and headed outside to start his car and let it warm up. How nice am I?

Right about then, I am reminded of my younger self, living in the Riverdale section of the Bronx, when I used to laugh at my single neighbor’s Italian mom dressed like an Eskimo cleaning off snow from her daughter’s car and warming it up so she could leave for work toasty warm and comfortable. I thought, “OMG what a princess”! Now I am doing the same thing for my husband here in Chicagoland.

So this is how it begins a weekend with frigid temps and ending with a snowstorm Sunday night into Monday morning.

I am thinking soup…lots of soup. Just have to figure out which recipe to use. I guess that will depend upon which ingredients I have in my pantry. I sure as h-ll do not want to go out food shopping today!

The only way to deal with this kind of winter weekend weather is “one day at a time”.

What are your weekend plans?

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Changing gears…

After over 25+ years in our home, this is the year my husband and I will be moving across town to a newly renovated townhome. Closing the door for the final time on our homestead where 4 generations of our family have lived will take my breath away. For a moment, I will take time to thank God for the years in this home and all the joys and sadnesses that hand in hand we both shared.

For those of you, who have already done a move like this I empathize, it is like no other move I have done in the past. While I am looking forward to our new home it is a daunting, exhausting journey to close one door and open another.

So many memories are in this home where I am sitting writing. Our girls spent their high school and college years here. My mother, her brother, my husband’s mother and my granddaughter came through this home as well and there are all kinds of things in our home that cling to powerful moments and memories of all those loved ones.

My own family home as a child was a three generation one. So many memories were shoved into our small 2-bedroom city apartment which faced the beautiful Hudson River in New York. Carved into my memory are all the holidays, family birthday gatherings , graduations, weddings and funerals. Now for the most part, all that is left of my childhood home are some photos, holiday dishes and momentos which I treasure but truthfully do not enjoy so much. On the contrary, sometimes they smother me. Honestly, do any of you feel that way? It is such a very unpleasant feeling, somewhere between attachment to the memories and guilt for wanting to get rid of the “stuff” of the past and be free to enjoy the present.

Right now, I am torn as I go through the “stuff”of my own life over the years in this beautiful home. The question I continually ask myself is, do I love it or I am just afraid to give it away, knowing it is from a past time never to be recaptured?

So, as I am coming to grips with all these emotions and trying to cope, I have decided to get outside help to physically approach the “stuff” and make the decision to give away, throw away or keep. I have been tackling this for a few months at a very slow pace. I have decided to take photos of meaningful things that I will be donating. It is NOT easy.

During difficult and stressful times, there is always something good. I have discovered long lost recipes and little things that have long been missing, hiding among the “stuff” of a real life. Let’s hope I can keep track of them as we move on for one more go around.

My goal is to be done by mid February. Fingers crossed all goes well “one day at a time.”

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Do you Meditate?

Just wondering whether or not you meditate regularly or otherwise?

I am thrilled with a new app which I have downloaded just before the New Year with the hope of beginning a daily routine of meditation, even if it is only for one minute a day.

Let me share the app with you…it is 10% Happier:Meditation. It is an Apple Award Winner of the “Best of 2018”. It happens to be the dream child of ABC news anchor, Dan Harris and so far I am pleased with my trial subscription and plan on renewing it when my trial is over.

Mindfulness and meditation has helped me for years. Even before my own children were born I was mediating and doing relaxation “tapes” to help with panic attacks and anxiety.

If you are reluctant to commit to a routine of mindful meditation, this app may give you the impetus to begin.

I will share with you how I am doing along the way as my meditation effort begins anew for 2019.

For now I am taking it “One Day At a Time”!


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Post Holiday Travel

I am here in LA enjoying some sun and a little bit of warmth.

Girlfriends, what do you do when you are away for a few days that helps to make memories to take home with you?

In LA, I am mostly with family, my daughter and granddaughter and I visit with a dear friend who helps run a homeless center in the heart of Hollywood. It is always humbling to visit and talk with those, who visit and utilize the services of The Center at Blessed Sacrament. These men and women may be very down on their luck but they show up for a mindfulness session a few days a week. It is here that some are able to share their vulnerabilities with other others. I am in awe when I sit down and participate in this group. It truly is a blessing for me to share with the men and women who call the streets of LA their home.

Last evening, I shared Mass of the Epiphany with a group of retired Immaculate Heart of Mary nuns. It was a sweet moment. I could remember the beloved nuns that shaped my young life and made me aware of the needs of others. My life was forever changed by the nuns at Marymount High School , Trinity College and then by the Jesuits at Loyola University Chicago. A person for others is a simple yet complex focus in life that has added to my happiness through both the good times and the difficult ones.

Today, I sit in Fullerton waiting for my sweet granddaughter’s cheerleading competition. There are thousands here for this event and it has been a VERY long afternoon waiting for their scheduled performance time! I am truly hoping for a successful experience for my granddaughter and then for a relaxing dinner somewhere delicious on the way home !

Memories, for me, are made of these awesome moments which ultimately change my life in sometimes enormous ways but mostly in small ones, which make me happy to live one day at a time!

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Welcome 2019!

This year I am going to update this blog. It is time for another look at “One Day at a Time”.

My plan is to develop a website for women ….women, who are over 50 years old and are not afraid to admit it. There is so much to share at this time in our lives, the good, the bad and the ugly as they say or the good, the better, the best.

Personally, I prefer a more positive perspective and most of all I am full of hope. The future, although perhaps very different, can still be good.

Individually, we can continue to be the best we can be by sharing with one another while we travel along life’s journey “one day at a time”. 

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Mindfulness…

Mindfulness is truly something that everyone should practice at least once in awhile…it is in a word and ‘awesome’ experience. The following is an excerpt from a piece in the New York Times. Mindfully enjoy it…

TRY this: place a forkful of food in your mouth. It doesn’t matter what the food is, but make it something you love — let’s say it’s that first nibble from three hot, fragrant, perfectly cooked ravioli.

Consider These

O.K., so you don’t happen to live in a Buddhist monastery. You can still give mindful eating a spin by incorporating a few chilled-out gestures and rituals into your regular calorie intake.

WHEN YOU EAT, JUST EAT. Unplug the electronica. For now, at least, focus on the food.

CONSIDER SILENCE. Avoiding chatter for 30 minutes might be impossible in some families, especially with young children, but specialists suggest that greenhorns start with short periods of quiet.

TRY IT WEEKLY. Sometimes there’s no way to avoid wolfing down onion rings in your cubicle. But if you set aside one sit-down meal a week as an experiment in mindfulness, the insights may influence everything else you do.

PLANT A GARDEN, AND COOK. Anything that reconnects you with the process of creating food will magnify your mindfulness.

CHEW PATIENTLY. It’s not easy, but try to slow down, aiming for 25 to 30 chews for each mouthful.

USE FLOWERS AND CANDLES. Put them on the table before dinner. Rituals that create a serene environment help foster what one advocate calls “that moment of gratitude.”

FIND A BUDDHIST CONGREGATION where the members invite people in for a day of mindfulness. For New Yorkers, it’s an easy drive to the Blue Cliff Monastery, about 90 minutes north of the city: bluecliffmonastery.org/ on the Web.

via Mindful Eating as Way to Fight Bingeing – NYTimes.com.

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Michelle Duggar of 19 Kids and Counting suffers miscarriage – latimes.com

Michelle Duggar of 19 Kids and Counting suffers miscarriage – latimes.com.

Apparently, there have been many comments on social media sites about Michelle Duggar’s miscarriage and….

many of them have not been sensitive to a mother who has just lost a baby in utero.

I find this so sad that people have to air their feelings about the Duggars’ large family during a time of loss and grieving.

The loss of a baby in utero is very sad and overwhelming…and parents especially mom needs time to grieve and recover from “delivering” a dead fetus.

As an obstetric nurse…I have seen sadness and grief overcome a family when a pregnancy ends abruptly in the death of a baby in utero.

There are always questions that may never be answered…what happened??? …the Duggars may never know for sure.

Duggars…take the time you all need as a family and personally to grieve your loss.

I am sorry!

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