Weekly Wishes #6

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Unfulfilled Wishes from Week #3, #4 and #5

Whoopee!!!!  Hooray!!!! Finally, I fulfilled two of the three remaining Wishes from Weeks #3, #4 and #5:

 On Saturday, I Exercised in the Pool for 45 minutes for the first time; since, I quit the Aqua Zumba class at the YMCA in August to go on vacation.   Wish Aqua Zumba was offered year-round; I will miss going to my “pool party” every Saturday morning.  I loved everything about this class.  Especially, the “salsa/hip hop music;” “low impact aquatic workout;” and, I had the “greatest time” with an “energetic and enthusiastic” group of women.  Since the pool will soon close at the YMCA, I will have to exercise “solo” in our pool at home.  Unless, I can get Hubby to join me.

Grateful for Exercising in the Pool and until the cold days arrive in Florida; I plan to merge water aerobics into my overall exercise program.

I Prepared a Healthy Meal from a Recipe, Fried Corn Zucchini Medley

Thanks to Grandma Loy’s Kitchen for sharing this quick and easy recipe on her blog.  I wanted a vegetarian dish as a side to grilled, skinless chicken breast; so, I omitted the bacon topping as she suggested.

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Photo Taken on My IPAD

I urge you to visit Grandma Loy’s Kitchen for her recipe as well as a beautiful photo presentation of the dish posted on August 30, 2013.   I know you will not be disappointed.  Grandma Loy has collected recipes for over 50 years; and, I am so happy to have access to her Holiday Cookie Mix recipes when the Grands come for Christmas.

Sadly, I failed to fulfill my Wish to Learn About My New Digital Camera.  But, I did overcome my anxiety about digital camera technology.  At the beginning of last week, I removed the camera from its packaging, read the directions, and charged the battery.  Then realized, I should have purchased a “memory card.”   So, I placed an on-line order, which arrived on Friday.  I will revisit this project next week.

Fulfilled Wishes from Week #5

I did fulfill my two new Wishes for Week #5 to make blog connections with caregivers and survivors of Breast Cancer and Chronic Pain.  I toured Blogosphere and subscribed and/or joined:

  • 12 Chronic Pain Blogs
  • 34 Breast Cancer Blogs

My stay at each blog site was very brief; given the thirty-four that I located and visited over a seven-day period.  But in the coming months, I plan longer visits to each blog.

As a survivor of both Breast Cancer and Chronic Pain, I am excited about connecting with other survivors with the Wish of sharing and learning about the personal experiences, opinions, attitudes, and/or sentiments of survivors, families, and/or caregivers.

My Wishes for Week #6

  • Prepare a Healthy Dessert
  • Review YouTube Videos on Canon Digital Cameras
  • Calendar of Activities:  Breast Cancer Awareness Month
  • Post Breast Cancer:  A Grateful Survivor – Part 1
  • Visit and Comment on Eight Breast Cancer Blogs
  • In Support of Sisters Network-Milwaukee Chapter:  Display Pink Wreath on Front Door

 

 

Friendship Friday

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I spent most of my life adjusting to the changing seasons of the midwest; but, three years ago Hubby and I retired and moved to sunny Florida.  The days are growing shorter, but the “hot,” and at most, “warm” days are year-round, the:

  • grass stays green,
  • flowers continue to bloom, and
  • leaves are not falling to the ground

So, I rely on visual images from memory of fall days in the midwest:

  1. What book do you never tire of reading?  I first read, “Simple Abundance:  A Daybook of Comfort and Joy,” by Sarah Ban Breathnach in the mid-1990s.  I have read and re-read the daily essays in this book which focuses on the importance and benefits of living an authentic life.  It is my go-to inspirational  uplift when adversity and negativity creeps into my space.  I admit to being a work-in-progress on the path to leading an authentic life.  But,“Today is Better Than Yesterday.”

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  • What song do you never tire of hearing?  I Believe I Can Fly,” song by Yolanda Adams and featuring Gerald Levert.  The first two verses resonate with me:  “I used to think that I could not go on.  And life was nothing but an awful song.  But now I know the meaning of true love.  I’m leaning on the ever lasting arms.  If I can see it.  Then I can do it.  If I just believe it there’s nothing to it.  I believe I can fly.  I believe I can touch the sky…….”   Whether it is morning, noon, or night listening to the lyrics of this song can change my “mind set” from pessimistic to optimistic.
  • What Movie Do You Never Tire of Watching?  Imitation of Life,”  I first viewed this movie shortly after its release in 1959.  It was a very, very sad movie about a daughter who terminated her relationship with her mother to pass for white.  Despite the mother’s efforts to reunite, the daughter continued to reject her.  Ending with the daughter begging forgiveness over her mother’s casket; the carriage drawn funeral processional; and, the beautiful voice of Mahalia Jackson brought tears to the eyes of everyone in the movie theater that day.

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On one hand, I was very sad.  But on the other, as a 15-year-old young girl, I was happy.  After all, this was my first “grown up.” movie.  Periodically, I dig through the videos and return to memories of this season of my young life.

So happy to share “memories” on Friendship Friday.

Weekly Wishes #5

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Week #4

I had every intention of fulfilling My Wishes to: 

  • Exercise in the Pool
  • Learn About my New Digital Camera
  • Prepare a Healthy Meal from a Recipe

But, I did’nt! 

Fulfilled A Different Wish

I opened up, reached out and embraced a new opportunity.

I participated in the Week-Long Commentathon Event hosted by Blogelina.

The prospect of introducing new readers to SeasonedSistahs2 was both exciting and challenging.

I submitted my Weekly Wishes #3 post for comments.

The number of bloggers who commented was surprising.  Within a week, SeasonedSistahs2 connected with over 50+ new blog sites.

But, after commenting on several posts, I wanted to know more about the bloggers who commented.   Not only did I read the assigned Commenthaton posts; I read About Pages and other Posts that tweaked my interests on:

Young Children

Discussions on Race

Homemaking Tips

  • More Than MundaneMy 10 Essentials for A Homemade Home,” September 9, 2013

Beauty and Health

Elders

  • Life’s A Lesson “10 Places for Help So That Elderly Can Live In Their Home and Still be Safe,” September 8, 2013

A Forgotten “Wish”

Until Blogelina’s Commenthaton, I had forgotten the Wish made in my very first post, “My Final Season:  How I Choose to Live It” on January 12, 2012 where I stated:

So many things I want to do.

Yet, sometimes I feel there is so little time.

As a beginning I want to create

a blog as a connection to the diverse

range of people in blogosphere.

Consumed with writing a blog to express my views these past months; I totally neglected to follow through on My Initial Blog Wish … “to create a blog as a connection.”   

Weekly Wishes #5

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Yes I am confident, this will be the week  for me:

  • Exercise in the Pool
  • Learn About my New Digital Camera
  • Prepare a Healthy Meal from a Recipe

Also, I Wish to make blog connections with survivors of:

A survivor of both these conditions, I recognize how important it is for ME to stay informed, involved, and connected with these communities – on-line and off-line.

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Weekly Wishes #4

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There will be times when our  “wishes” will not “come true.”  Though, I wished for things to happen, I “failed” to even “try.”  Of the five (5) Wishes, I planned last week; I was able to fulfill two (2):

Wish #1 – Perform Small Acts of Kindness

As I sit in front of my laptop with hands resting on chin, I am trying to remember how many times last week did I Perform an Act of Kindness?  It took a little time for the “senior moment” to pass, but I finally remembered signing an on-line petition before breakfast.

The petition was requesting two pharmaceutical companies to release the drug PD-1, now in clinical trials, to treat cancer patients.   The cancer patient in this particular instance is a 40-year-old husband, father of three, diagnosed  with Stage 4 cancer.  Given six months to live, this “wonder drug” could possibly save his life.

After signing the petition, I forwarded it to my e-mail friends and posted on Facebook page.  I am praying daily for this young man and his family.

When I signed the petition, I did not view it as a “Small Act of Kindness,” in relation to my Weekly WishesI just signed because it was the right thing to do.  Empathy, compassion, and support for those in need “happen naturally” without most of us even realizing it.

Wish #5 – Read Daily Passages from “Simple Abundance:  A Daybook of Comfort and Joy,” by Sarah Ban Breathnach

Immediately following my 5:00 a.m. “One-Hour Quiet Time,” I would read a daily essay from this book.  The following snippets resonated with me:

Monday, September 9The Courage to Answer the Call

You gain strength, courage and confidence by every experience in which you really stop to look fear in the face . . . . You must do the thing you cannot do. (Eleanor Roosevelt)

“Powers that gifted you with your dream knows how to help you make it come true. (Breathnach)

Tuesday, September 10Setting Your Own Pace

“A lot of people – including your partner and children – might wonder aloud for years if you’re ever going to become sensible again.” (Breathnach)

“The bottom line is not how fast you make your dream come true, but how steadily you pursue it.” (Breathnach)

Wednesday, September 11A Psalm of Life

“Let us, then, be up and doing . . . With a heart for any fate . . . Still achieving, still pursuing, Learn to labor and to wait. (Henry Wadsworth Longfellow)

Thursday, September 12Uncommon Women and Others

“One of the most wonderful truths you will discover on the path to authenticity is that your aspirations are your possibilities.(Breathnach)

Friday, September 13Thoughts on Success

“But Simple Abundance has taught me, as I know it will teach you, that authentic success is living by your own lights, not the glare of popping flashbulbs.  And they can’t take that away from us.” (Breathnach)

Saturday, September 14  – Giving Yourself Credit

Although it may crown you Queen for a Day, the world cannot confer the recognition that will make you feel fulfilled.” (Breathnach)

Sunday, September 15Authentic Success

“Authentic Success is knowing how simply abundant your life is exactly as it is today…. Being grateful for the many blessings bestowed on you and yours that you can share your portion with others.” (Breathnach)

I first read this book in the mid-1990s.  Back then, I failed to recognize, accept and embrace the concept.  It was just a “popular read”  within my “circle of friends.”  Eighteen years later, after a “re-read.” I FINALLY GOT IT!!!!

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Even though readily accessible, I did not fulfill the following Wishes last week:

Wish #2 – Exercise in the Pool

I can walk out the rear patio door of our house to Exercise in the Pool; but I failed to make it a priority.  So, I have no excuse other than “poor time management.”

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Wish #3 – Learn About My New Digital Camera

Opened the box, took a quick look; and I immediately put it back in the box.  No excuse, other than the instructions seemed a “bit intimidating.”  

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Wish #4 – Prepare Healthy Meal from a Recipe

I prepared healthy meals everyday  – lunch and dinner – but not from a recipe; and, Hubby prepared the healthy breakfast (bran cereal, almond milk, fruit, and decaf coffee)  The resources at my fingertips – a wide range of healthy recipes on the Internet as well as my own extensive collection of healthy nutrition cookbooks.   Again, I failed to plan.

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So, my Wishes for Week #5 are to fulfill my three Wishes from last week.

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Blogs I Luv

http://www.livinginanotherlanguage.com

http://www.lauralynnblog.wordpress.com

http://www.furiouscuriouscancersurvivor.wordpress.com

http://www.remixhomestyling.wordpress.com

http://www.oldgirlnewtricks.wordpress.com

http://www.thenectarcollective.com

My Recent Chronic Pain Flareup

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For the past 18 days, I have been pain-free.  Well, that’s not true.  Having lived with chronic pain for more than twenty years, I experience some level of pain everyday.   But, I have been able to manage and control my pain condition with non-narcotic prescription medications and utilizing my cadre of self-management tools:

  • Sleep – 8 hours a Night
  • Pacing Activities
  • Rest/Relaxation
  • Distractions (Music, Blogging, Facebook, E-Mails, Reading, Journaling, etc.)
  • Exercise
  • Meditation
  • Yoga
  • Aqua Zumba
  • Music

However, around Thanksgiving last year, I had a severe pain flare-up in my right knee.  The pain was agonizing, constant, and never-ending.

Though, I continued to take the prescribed meds and use my self-management tools; I had no pain relief.

Despite the continuous pain, I refused to see a doctor until July 2013.  Ridiculous, Really, Are You Serious, Why? — just a few of the comments I heard from friends and family.  There is no plausible answer other than FEAR of a knee replacement, hospital, surgery and anesthesia.   In a two year-period, I survived two life-threatening conditions — Breast Cancer in 2008 and Epiglottitis in 2010.  

Frankly, at 70-years-old, I was not ready for another round of treatments, hospitalization, or a long-term recovery period.  All of which would be required with a knee replacement.

In July, I visited the Adult Kids and Grands in Wisconsin; and, I also kept the bi-annual follow-up visit with my long-term rheumatologist.  Of course, ME having been described as “stoic” by more than one health care provider; underreported my pain levels.  But Dr. O noticed me “limping” and “grimacing” as I made my way on and off the exam table.

Caught in the ActBusted.  He immediately ordered an x-ray and, after review, recommended a referral to an orthopedic surgeon to discuss a knee replacement.

My response, “Well, I’m heading back to Florida in a day or two, I will look into seeing one there.  Thinking, knee replacement it’s not going to happen.

Prior to the follow-up visit with my rheumatologist, a YMCA friend had noticed me “limping” and “grimacing” around the exercise room for months.  Several times he suggested that I schedule an appointment with the orthopedic surgeon who had done his knee replacement.

Finally, after more than six months of constant and unrelenting pain, I scheduled the appointment with my friend’s orthopedic surgeon, Dr. M.

After reviewing the x-rays, Dr. M said my chronic autoimmune disease (Mr. Arthur-Rheumatoid Arthritis) had severely attacked my knee joints and a future knee replacement surgery was inevitable.

Good News

I experienced immediate pain relief following a cortisone injection by Dr. M.

Even Better News

Dr. M prescribed four weeks of physical therapy

to build up my muscles in preparation for the future knee replacement.

Bestest News

I overcame the FEAR of a knee replacement.

My “Aha” Moment

The quality of my life is more important

than the fear of a knee replacement.

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Weekly Wishes #3

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Last week, my “Wishes” for “Week #2” were to:

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Smile and Laugh More – During most of my pre-teen and teenage years, I sported a cavity right between my two front teeth.  For fear of embarrassment, I would seldom “Smile” or “Laugh.”  Finally, when I was about 16-years-old MAMA managed to save enough money to pay for capping both teeth in porcelain.  Gold caps were cheaper, then, but this was totally an unacceptable option for “her daughter.”

Old habits are hard to break.  But, this past week, I made an effort to “Smile” or “Laugh” when:

–                Meeting people face-to-face

–                Reading e-mails, Facebook notifications, and blog posts

–                Conversing on the telephone with family, friends, telemarketers

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Each Day Give Something Good to Others – I made it a point to say a warm and heart-felt “Thank You” to everyone who provided ME with a service – including, but not limited to the:

Cashiers at the grocery store who always asks, “If I found everything I was looking for.”  Understandable, since Hubby and I shop for groceries almost every day of the week.

Physical Therapist even though, on this first visit, he took me through a grueling hour of stretching and balancing exercises.

Nail Tech for a relaxing pedicure and lovely manicure as well as showing patience when I fell asleep in the manicure and pedicure chairs.  I always go to sleep; and, with a very light touch she lets me know when  I need to do something.

Customer Service Representative at PayPal who was so patient in assisting me with accessing my account to pay the invoice for the redesigning of my blog by Amanda at www.livinginanotherlanguage.com

To one of my BFF (Best Friends Forever), a grandmother, struggling with whether it is feasible to pursue her long-time Wish of going back to college, I Give to BFF words of encouragement by sharing the following quotes:

  • The only thing that will stop you from fulfilling your dreams is you. (Tom Bradley)
  • If you want to live a happy life, tie it to a goal, not to people or things.  (Albert Einstein)
  • Go confidently in the direction of your dreams.  Live the life you have imagined.  (Henry David Thoreau)

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Express Gratitude Daily – For a short period, I stopped writing down what I was grateful for at the end of the day.  This past week, I am back on track and Expressed my Gratitude by writing before I retired for the night in my Gratitude Journal.

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Stay in Touch with Extended Family and Friends – Over the years; I have been remiss in staying connected with people who I love and need in my life.  I feel proud of my “outreach” efforts this past week.   I

  • telephoned and had a long conversation with a former neighbor and friend in Wisconsin.
  • reached out, by sending warm messages via greeting cards, to four of my closest friends in Wisconsin.

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Rest and Relax – Did I ever.  Every morning, I rose at 5:00 a.m., with the exception of two mornings at 7:00 a.m., to sit for an hour on our rear screened-in-lanai.   The serenity and tranquility enhanced by listening to the audio book by Sarah Ban Breathnach, “Simple Abundance:  Living by Your Own Lights,” with soft sounds of background piano music played by Kelly Yost.

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The music put me in such a relaxing state; I didn’t hesitate to place an order for the CD.  Sadly, on backorder, and, I can’t wait to receive it.

Weekly Wishes #3 improved the overall quality of my life and I will strive to continue down the path that these Wishes led me to.

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As I begin Week #4 my Wishes are to:

  • Perform small acts of kindness.
  • Exercise in the pool swimming pool.
  • Learn as much as I can about my newly purchased digital camera.
  • Prepare healthy meal from a recipe.
  • Read each day a passage fromSimple Abundance:  A Daybook of Comfort and Joy,” by Sarah Ban Breathnach.

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Today is Better than Yesterday and Tomorrow the Possibilities are Unlimited!!!

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Luv My Transitioning Neighborhood

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Transitional Neighborhood is a neighborhood that is “changing” it can be from good to bad or bad to good, but usually it is from bad to good.” (Wikipedia)

When our youngest daughter left for college in 1985, Hubby and I became “Empty Nesters.”  We enjoyed the down sized apartment style of living until 1999.  Then WE got the “home ownership bug” again

WE found the perfect four-bedroom tri-level home in a nearby suburb of Milwaukee, Wisconsin.   Originally built as a model for the Parade of Homes in 1962, this house ticked every box on “our wishes and needs checklist.”  It, also, met our “must haves”?

  • Quiet Neighborhood – Eight homes on a dead-end street separated by spacious lot sizes on both sides.
  • Scenic Views – Rear of home backs up to wooded conservation area.
  • Lower Traffic – One street entrance and exit.  Limits unknown people and vehicles passing through.
  • Like-Minded Neighbors –  Empty Nesters

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Our “Cul-de-Sac” House

Hubby and I were the newbies.”  All of our neighbors were now “Empty Nesters” who had lived in the neighborhood since before the 1970.s   We heard stories about how alive and active the “cul-de-sac” had been back in the day when their children were growing up.  But, when we arrived in 1999, the “cul-de-sac” was an “Empty Nesters” haven.

Somewhere around 2009, the house across the street from ours sold to a young couple with a 2-year-old little girl.  Even with this younger household, the “cul-de-sac” continued to serve as a sanctuary for “Empty Nesters. ”

Then, in January 2012, the neighborhood began to shift toward becoming a “Transitioning Neighborhood.”  Our Son, a single father with a 4-year-old daughter, rented our home; which had been empty since Hubby and I retired to Florida in 2010.   Now, there were two little girls living in the “cul-de-sac” attracting children from the adjoining cross street.

This summer Hubby and I visited our Son.  I spent most of my time sitting in a wicker chair on the front porch.  Watching the neighborhood children – playing, riding bicycles, tricycles, scooters, and other four-wheel battery-operated vehicles took me back to my childhood.   I was not only an onlooker, but the:

ü  Mediator of disputes,

ü  Judge for competitive activities; and

ü  Nurse with the band-aid who kissed the “owies.”

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Two Car Garage:  Granddaughter’s “Cul-de-Sac” Transportation

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Son and Granddaughter  Playing Around in the “Cul-de-Sac”

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“Cul-de-Sac” Neighbors

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“Cul-de-Sac” Race

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Granddaughter’s Favorite “Cul-de-Sac” Transportation

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Granddaughter’s Other Mode of “Cul-de-Sac” Transportation

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Granddaughter’s Front Porch Flower Garden

I enjoyed the changes in the “cul-de-sac.  But, I no longer live there.  I return for several weeks each year to visit my children and the grands.  However, I was curious about how the remaining “Empty Nesters” felt about the influx of children in the “cup-de-sac”.  Seeking an answer from at least one of the neighbors, I approached my next-door neighbor an 88-year-old, widowed about six years ago, who lives alone. When I asked about the “changes” in the “cul-de-sac”; she said, “I love to sit at the window and watch the children play.  It brightens my day.”

Like me, she sees the “Transitioning” as “good” and not “bad.”  Our “cul-de-sac” is welcoming in a new generation

Unlike, the following quote by Jane Jacobs, the Death and Life of Great American Cities:

“Neighborhoods built up all at once change little physically over the years as a rule…[Residents] regret that the neighborhood has changed. Yet the fact is, physically it has changed remarkably little. People’s feelings about it, rather, have changed. The neighborhood shows a strange inability to update itself, enliven itself, repair itself, or to be sought after, out of choice, by a new generation. It is dead. Actually it was dead from birth, but nobody noticed this much until the corpse began to smell.”