Saturday, December 31, 2005

Happy Happy Joy Joy

The New Year will shortly be here. At the end of each year I think to the major things that have happened in the past year. Our year started off pretty harshly last year as Jan. 5th we lost our beloved Sandie. Last year my friend Laura lost her dog and then on Dec. 30 (their 55th anniversary) my parents lost their dog, Wendy. Losing an animal you love is so very hard. Instead of focusing on the end of their lives I thought back to the many wonderful times that I shared with these special animals. I went with my mother when she picked Wendy out. She spent many holidays here and with me in their home. She was a wonderful little Boston Terrier who barked loudly demanding a milkbone each time we went to visit her. She would not be silenced until her treat was given. She will be sorely missed. I can look back and think of so many wonderful memories of these animals. I have come to believe that animals, particularly dogs are God's way of teaching us unconditional love.
I have been using some of my new Christmas presents today. I asked for and received a paper shredder. Yes, I am an office supply whore. Seduce me with Staples products. The office manager seems wise to this and enjoys springing new things on me. Our boss enjoys having the latest up do date computer programs and wonderful equipment. It's a joy for me.
I also received a copy of Theresa William's book "The Secret of Hurricanes" and I plan to at least start it this weekend. Have put away all the new clothes and even worn my new black boots which are made of kid glove leather.
As I look back on 2005 I achieved my goals. I learned some new computer programs and skills. I got back to work. I lost a few pounds, although some found their way back. My son got a job. I said goodbye to one beloved furbaby but I found the courage to adopt another. It's been a lot of hard work and sleepless nights but he's getting beter. Mostly, I have found that my brain has been jump started. I have reorganized my home and records and have taken control back of things that I had lost control of due to my surgery. I feel better all the time. I have rejoined the world once more and it feels marvelous!
It was hard to close my AOL journals but I have found a new home here. Thankfully, I have many neighbors from the old neighborhood here with me. I haven't mastered the html codes yet. There are many things I want to do with the journal but that will take time. In the meantime, I am happy to be here and to have the outlet to share my life with all of you who have come to mean so much to me.
From a place deep in my heart I wish all of you the happiest of new years, filled with love, friendship and peace.

Friday, December 30, 2005

I've been tagged and so let the weirdness be unveiled :)

To think you will only learn FIVE of the really weird thing about me...............
Firstly, I think I died of starvation in a previous life. I believe this because I simply must have enough food on hand to survive six months without access to any. The overflow from my pantry is stored in the garage which just boggles my husband's mind. This carries over in to the inability I have to toss perfectly good food. Sorry but I keep thinking of those starving children across the sea. If they could just make it to my house I could feed them for a few months.

Secondly, my musical tastes are as ecclectic as anyone I have ever known. I will be singing Morning has Broken (Cat Stevens) as I sung in mass and that might be followed by AC/DC You Shook Me All Night Long. I love nearly all kinds of music although I am not a jazz fan. Certain music, such as Motown never fails to pick up my sinking spirits.

Thirdly, I love to run around barefoot. Even in winter. The first thing I do when I get home is kick off the shoes. I have numerous pairs of slippers but if I'm wearing shoes it's either dress shoes for work for flip flops (I even have silk flip flops!)

Fourthly, I never marry anyone in my own age group. I have married someone over ten years older than me and now someone over ten years younger than me. This is why I must stay married to Rob. The next thing you know I might find myself cruising the local community college. My father gets very irritated by my seemingly disregard for social confirmation.

Fifthly, I value honesty more than any other attribute in another person. Even though their honesty might be hurtful, I would rather have words of sincerity than a line of crap that was thrown at me to make me feel better. I can take anything as long as I know that it's being said by someone just keeping it real.

Thanks Cynthia for tagging me.
I tag Connie,Amy,Jennifer,Judi,Virginia,and Rob.

Thursday, December 29, 2005

A full day

Last night I could not fall asleep. It was 2 a.m. and I was still wide awake thinking about how exhausted I would be today in my class. Probably the last class of computer training. I was awake and up by 7 a.m. Gone are the days where I can function on five measly hours of sleep. It was raining and I made the 45 minute drive North. The room we were in was freezing and I had to sit all day in a wet rain coat. The material was so intense and my concentration was lacking. I made it through the class and did manage to absorb some of the higher functions of the Word program. At lunch time I called my mother's to see if she had driven to Maryland to pick up my grandmother. She had but I also learned that her dog, Wendy was quite ill and my father was taking her to the vet.
I got home from school late, quickly ate some delicious Chinese food that Rob picked up and went to my parents. My mother and grandmother had just arrived. The dog seems to be struggling to breathe. The vet told my father that she has a lot of fluid around her heart and gave her an injection. He told him that in the next 24 hours she will start to improve or not. My father was in such poor condition that the vet carried the dog out to the car for him. This is a small dog, a Boston terrier. Tomorrow morning they will call the vet and see what else can be done.
Tomorrow is my parents 55th anniversary. Unusual these days. I know they really won't want to be celebrating but perhaps that's the very time something cheery is most needed or appreciated. My sister-in-law is making her baked ziti and I am buying fried chicken (a huge favorite), making a salad and picking up a cake for them. It will be a good distraction, at least briefly.
My son finally has a good job. I am almost afraid that if I say it, or write it, I will jinx it. It has taken him years to put his mind to something and get a job that has benefits, including a 401K. Please cross your fingers as you read this that he will stick with it. He seems to be in a better frame of mind and is going to join us for the small celebration tomorrow night. I am hoping that his spirits will improve when he has a nice paycheck each week. I know that my spirits would be lifted. I really need more income. I am hoping that I will be able to find something full time soon. Although I love the people and place where I work, I need a full time paycheck.
I am tired, as I write this. Most nights I fall into bed and am so tired that it's an effort to kiss my beloved good night. I hate that. On the other hand, I rejoice that with his support I have returned to living my life. Not just existing but living it. I have work friends and work clothes and am using the mind that had sat dormant for too long. Never a day goes by that I don't pause and feel grateful for where I am now and where I have come from. I hope by this time next year I am able to take my darling on a wonderful vacation.

Sunday, December 25, 2005

Merry Christmas to All and to all a good night!

Did you ever wish you could relive the happiest moments of you life? Tonight I did. Since I have been 14 I have collected records. I have most of them. One of the first albums I ever owned was the original The Band album. It was given to me by my first love. It's been something that has moved with me four times to various homes and is never put on a moving truck but taken in my car...along with my orignal Beatles albums. These are the things, material things, that meant the world to me. Tonight I was able to play my records again because Rob bought me a turntable (amongst other things) for Christmas. I am overjoyed. Now I can relive the many memories associated with these albums. The first time I ever heard The Beatles white album I was in high school, tenth grade. It was snowing that night but my best friend, Debbie and I snuck out our bedroom windows and went over to Ann Barfield's house. Ann had recently moved to NJ from Texas. She was having such a difficult adjustment. Her Mom had married her stepdad and promptly had three children leaving Ann to feel lost. Debbie and I befriended her and for Christmas her stepfather bought her this. We sat there around her dining room table as we heard the songs that would become such a part of our lives forever. I remember I Will and thinking how beautiful it was. We all loved Rocky Raccoon. For the next few months we couldn't wait to go to her house and hear it. When I was 17 I moved into my apartment with my first husband. He also loved music and we promptly acquired a very expensive music system and records. While other people wanted fancy cars, we wanted more records. In my divorce I wanted and got them. I only know one other person who has her original Carol King album. (She plans to be buried with it.) For the next few weeks I plan to spend a lot of time enjoying this gift.
I also received The Secret of Hurricanes the book by Theresa Williams. I am eager to read that. I received many nice gifts this year. The greatest gift was to learn that my son got a good job. I am so hoping that this will lead to wonderful things for him, including medical benefits.
My Dad is still not feeling well. Stayed in bed last evening instead of attending my brother's family gathering and got up for lunch but went back to bed. Rob made him onion soup which we insist be prepared for him au gratin. He seems to be stuck where he is holding his own but not really recovering. I may have to insist my mother call his doctor. It will be a busy week for me this week. At work we got a new computer program and I will be entering a lot of data into it and learning just how things work. Our boss will be away for the week so the office manager and I will be working the kinks out on our own perhaps. I enjoy a new challenge. I will finally be at a work station that will feel like my own. I am in a hectic office where no one has their own desk. We all have to share to some degree except for the owner. I miss having my own little work station but am hoping that is yet to come.
I hope every one of you has had a wonderful day today. Not filled with material things but filled with the memories of love and friendship and family.

Friday, December 23, 2005

It's Beginning to Feel a lot like Christmas

Today was the first day in a long time that Rob was home (and not sick). We had another restless night but went out this morning and found a wonderful pair of black boots with my bonus money from my boss. They were a bit pricey but very comfortable and beautiful and the leather was like butter. After that we went to a sporting good store and Rob bought another set of darts he had wanted. We had lunch out then came home. I had a message from my mother in the voice mail. My father was not feeling well. I drove over there and he admitted to my mother that he had talked the doctor into letting him come home and he had indicated he was doing better than he was. My mother is very upset at the possibility that I might not come for Christmas because my sister will be there. Ancient history but problems that have really gone over the top the last few months. I am not sure what I am going to do but I know that I must be true to myself. This is something my family has never understood. I am tired of explaining it. Sometimes I think how much simpler my life would be if I didn't have analytical tendencies. I tend to think about things and rehash them in my mind. I just do not have the personality to take things at face value or turn the other cheek as my parents like to point out as the "proper" thing to do. They refuse to take sides but tell me that my sister was out of line and they think she has taken advantage of me for years. My Dad has actually told her that. She has the ability to let everything roll off her back so nothing ever gets through.

That wasn't what this entry was intended to be about. Under my tree are presents. For the neighbors, for my son and some for us. I am getting a bit excited. The little furry ones have their own gifts and stockings. I only wish there were a natural herb that would help them both sleep. How I miss sleeping through the night and late into the next day. It's not so much Duffy as it is our cat. I wish some animal behaviorist could study him. Honestly, he is very demanding and if we confine him to a room he will verbally carry on for over half an hour. He also opens door handles that are not locked.

We have a new neighbor and she is having a gathering at her home at 9. I am way too tired to go. Another neighbor just called and said she's too tired also. I think 9 is late for people who have children or pets that don't let them sleep. To be honest I have walked about in a zombie like coma today. I looked in the mirror and was horrified. Well, I am going to take a nice warm bath in my new raspberry bath.

For those of you who know Amy of J-Land (the mother of Pie) she lost her beloved dog Cooter this morning. Please drop her a note and let her know that you care. It's such a huge loss to bear. I want her to know that our constant thoughts are of her and her family and we sent them huge hugs.
Now it's time to get some rest.
Nighty night all and I just have to say it
God bless us, everyone.

Wednesday, December 21, 2005

Slap Happy

Have you ever been so tired that you're slap happy? That's how I am right now. Firstly, the past few days of working, running to the hospital, doing last minute Christmas errands have made it so hectic that when I lay down I pass out immediately. I only sleep for about five hours because my brain knows that I can't waste time on things like sleep. Bad brain.

My Dad is finally home from the hospital. The liver is returning to normal. The infection was so severe that it was the culprit. He is still not feeling well or eating much but he's home and I think that will speed his recovery.

Yesterday was our wonderful office party. It was a real joy. I had to be at work by 9 a.m. I usually go in at 10. We had a live computer lesson on a new program just installed. That was interesting. I then had to leave and run home to feed the pets and allow Duffy out for a break. An hour later I was back on the road picking up ice and coffee for the party and was back in the office. We had a huge spread put on by a caterer. Things were visually appealing and very tasty. We even had a waitress. Gifts were exchanged and we even had a cake for our oldest agent who turns 83 in a few days. I received so many nice things, including gift certificates which I am eager to use.

My son finally got a full time job with benefits. I am so happy about that. Particularly after what I went through on Sunday cleaning his apartment kitchen. The word pig stye just doesn't begin to cover it. I am too tired but that's a story I may soon tell. Not for those of you with weak stomachs though. LOL

I am falling asleep here so time to crawl into my nice warm bed and conk out until 5 or 6 a.m. when the pets or my malfunctioning biological clock wake me. All I can think of is that tomorrow afternoon when I leave work, paycheck in hand, I will have the next three or four days off. YES!!!! Life is good.

Wishing you all peace, joy and love.

Tuesday, December 20, 2005

A Quick Update

Yesterday my father saw a liver specialist. He thinks that the kidney infection which was quite bad is the problem and that as the infection continues to clear that the problem will correct itself. The strong antibiotics he was on can also have a bad effect on liver enzymes. He has been in the hospital a week now and we are wondering if he will make it home for Christmas.

Today is our office party. I have to be in early as the office manager has an appointment. I will be going nonstop all day. I had five hours sleep last night after I worked yesterday then went to visit my father. I got home and realized I needed a prescription and had to go out again. I really need a day to unwind and am going to see if I can have tomorrow off, if not then Thursday.

Yesterday I waited for HOURS in the morning for a flooring store to show up and they never did. When I called there the woman told me I had not been home. I told her I most certainly had and she asked why I wasn't answering my phone. I asked her what number she was calling. Well she had called a 2 where an 8 should have been. When I told her she kept repeating how often they had tried to reach me. I told the woman that I had told them I would be here and I was. Someone should have thought to verify the phone number which is on their records. She wanted to reschedule for this or next week. Impossible for me. I am very annoyed with this store.

Well time to get the animals set for the day, dry my hair and hit the road. I hope the rest of you are having a more relaxing holiday season. I am getting some nice appreciation gifts at work and that has added much to my holiday cheer. The gifts are generous but that is secondary to the fact that these people seem genuinely appreciative. Nothing makes a job more worthwhile..........
now sing along with me for just a minute...........................

I wish you a Merry Christmas (or Happy Hannukah)
I wish you a Merry Christmas (or Happy Hannukah)
I wish you a Merry Christmas (or Happy Hannukah)
and a Happy New Year!

Much much much frienship to all of you who come here to read. Remember it's the season to be extra thoughtful to those who have less than us.

Saturday, December 17, 2005

Waiting for the shoe to drop

As I had previously reported my father is in the hospital. He was recovering from his kidney infection nicely but the fluid in his abdomen was still there despite the fact that he was now hydrated and able to control his urinating. Today a doctor told him that his liver has problems according to the blood tests. They plan to scan it tomorrow and let him know on Monday. Until they know exactly what is happening, they are not releasing him. Normally, I would say not to worry until/unless we had something to worry about for certain. The problem is that I am very worried for two reasons. About six months ago he had his heart valve replaced and that means blood transfusions. That can be a source of hepatitis. Secondly, when my late mother-in-law (actually my ex's Mom) had this, she was diagnosed with liver cancer and died a few months later. When my mother told me tonight she broke down. Rob and I went over there for a few hours to keep her company. She is trying to think that things will be okay. I am not sharing my fears with her right now.
This is going to be a very busy week for me at work. Monday I am having a man check on a small damage the floor installer made on my floor and I go in to work late and will be staying late. Tuesday I have to go in early because the office manager has an appointment. I will be staying late for our office party which begins at four o'clock. It's Christmas week and I am sure I will be doing something virtually every waking minute. My gifts are purchased and wrapped. I went pretty light on gifts this year. My holiday spirit has been lacking.
I have always been someone who had to fight off the holiday blues. In my early years my parents were poor. I would go to visit my cousin and leave feeling so down. She had beautiful expensive toys and later jewelery. When she got this five piece metal kitchen set ( I even remember that it was pink) I got a child's table with two chairs that was too small for me, but was a gift I had to share with my sister who was seven years younger. A few years later my father got a good job and I got bigger and better things. As a teen I had this boyfriend who always had just the right gifts. Thoughtful and wonderful. The most spectacular of all was when he surprised me with an engagement ring. I was only 16 and later gave it back but I will never forget that feeling of knowing someone really loved me. My ex never gave me an engagement ring and I often dwellt on that. My ex never went shopping for gifts for me. He was an atheist who never let me forget that once we were married. Before that he attended church with me. I did have happy Christmases when my son was little. I had vicarious pleasure in seeing him open and enjoy his toys. I always went overboard but then had him clear out his old toys and donate many to charities. As my son got older the dark cloud began to resurface. When I first met Rob things were good and it lifted. This year with all the burden of coming up with money for Christmas and the bills and Rob's illness, followed by my father's hospitalization, I have struggled harder. My grandmother is having problems as well. It just seems that there is more to worry about than there is to be joyful for.
Ironically, THIS year my ex decided to use a small Christmas tree I had previously given him. Today I went to the mall and got stockings for my son and his bird with their names on them. (The ex has his and I was not going to part with my son's childhood stocking.) This is good for my son's spirits. That makes me joyful.
Today I also purchased two ornaments. One for the cat and one for Duffy. I found two of Sandie's ornaments and it really hit me hard. I think that I will put the one, the silhouette of her with her name engraved on the tree in memory of her.
Her name and face are deeply engraved in my heart. Tonight I held Duffy so close and showed him his ornament. It's a cookie jar that says "Treats" under it hangs a bone with his name on it. The cats is adorable and is a stocking with his name on it and then a fish hanging out of the stocking. There's a note to Santa on it saying he's been good. They both have stockings that Rob's Mom gave them. One has a dog on it and one has a cat. I cannot imagine not having them. As much as they are a nuisance at times, they are something else for me to be joyful about.
I am also joyful about Rob. EVEN THOUGH he was cleaning snow off my car and put some scratches on the roof of it. :O EVEN THOUGH he damaged my old car too. My friend said that was the test of love because had my ex done that I would have driven over him in anger. LOL Probably so. I love Rob with all that's left of my heart. Some pieces are broken off and missing but Rob has hermetically sealed the rest of it for safe keeping. Even the new valve. I am glad that despite so much uncertainty in other things, I am certain that no matter what Rob will be here for me. That is truly the greatest gift one could hope for. I am so very grateful for the gift of his love.

Thursday, December 15, 2005

A bit hectic here

Yesterday we had quite a scare with my Dad. They went to the internist after he was running a temp of 103 and losing control of his bladder. He was so weak he could not even sit up. The internist called am ambulance to come transport him to the hospital as his blood pressure was not stable. When he arrived they immediately noticed he had a lot of fluid in his abdomen. He weighed 20 lbs more than his last visit. They began tests and found he was dehydrated with a bad urinary infection. I worked until 3:30 when I found out what had happened. (My mother had my work phone no. but didn't find an opportunity to call me.) I came home and fed the animals and then went to the hospital to see him. He was staring at the ceiling and that concerned me as he looked "out of it". By the time we left he seemed to be a bit better and ate some dinner. He had stopped eating and drinking the night before saying he felt that he would not survive this. It had nothing to do with his heart, this time, but they brought in the cardiologist to check him out anyway.
Last night was Rob's dart night and he didn't go so that he could see my Dad and give me some moral support. When we got home we were again exhausted.
This morning I got up and made up my mind that my Christmas tree simply HAD to be put up. I dragged the ladder out of the garage and manneuvered it into the attic. I was not able to hoist myself up with the beam. My chest muscles just aren't what they used to be. I called my mother who came over and went up there for me. She brought down only a few things that I absolutely needed, mainly the tree. It's up and I am slowly decorating it. Rob will probably work overtime tonight and it will be a pleasant surprise for him. Tomorrow will be hectic with me working and going with my boss to help her make the purchases for our upcoming Christmas party on Tuesday afternoon. I love to shop so this should be enjoyable. She just got a new car with heated seats. In this weather, that will be marvelous. I always enjoy her company so it will be a treat.
I have to run out and do some errands. I think snow is on it's way. I need to get to the bank and deposit checks, making sure some of what I have sent are covered. The tree puts me a bit in the Christmas spirit. I struggle as I miss Sandie so very much. I keep finding items that were hers: her stocking, half a dozen ornaments, special Christmas bowl and collar. Duffy has his own stocking which his grandmother sent him. I am not ready to give him Sandie's things. I might never be. I got Sandie at Thanksgiving and she was so tiny for her first Christmas with us. I have videos of that. I want to hold her so badly and tell her once more how much I love her and how much she meant to me. I have to believe that she knew that. It was the last thing I said to her. This would have been our fifteenth Christmas. I know that she is in a better place, free of pain and at peace. Usually that comforts me but right now it doesn't. I keep telling myself it will get better.

Sunday, December 11, 2005

Sunday evening

I just finished cleaning up Sunday dinner. I made Rob a big pot of home made chicken soup. Hoping that will make him feel somewhat better. I feel so badly. He is still miserable. He coughs, then he hiccups then he has intense belching. I am not sleeping and neither is he. He wakes up with spasms of hiccups. I guess we will contact the doctor once more tomorrow. We both need a good night's sleep. I am more concerned with them just making him feel better or identify what is causing this.
It doesn't feel like Christmas. Our tree is still up in the cold attic. We tried to find someone to install pull down attic stairs and never found anyone. It would make life so much easier. Still, the only access is in my bedroom closet. Right now we put a regular ladder in it and frankly it's dangerous and not user friendly. Right now I miss some of the things that my old house had: namely pull down attic stairs and the fireplace. I had converted the fireplace to gas and it was amazing. Beautiful to watch and so warm and cozy. We could get a tiny glass one here but it would take up space that we really need. Still, someday we might do it.
I have been experimenting with templates. Trying to find one that suits me. Most of the ones that I select do not allow you to change the font style, size or color and I don't understand why. I do know a bit about html and that if I had hours to invest I might be able to change a few things. Problem is that right now for me time is in short supply. I am either going to school, working or doing something for the house or animals. Normally Rob is a tremendous help to me but right now he is under strict spousal orders to take it easy and do nothing. He needs rest in order to heal. I do have all our gifts purchased and wrapped. There will be packages mailed tomorrow. One will be going to my grandmother and has a container of cookies that Jennifer posted the recipe for in the joint blog. Absolutely delicious! I am including the recipe for my grandmother.
Well I just heard Rob stirring, he woke up from a short nap. The Devils are playing hockey and I want to catch the rest of the game with him. I am so hoping he will be improved for all the holiday festivities.

Wednesday, December 07, 2005

Baby it's cold outside

Today Rob stayed home and although I hoped he would stay in bed all day he managed to do some laundry and other things. I got paid today and knowing he was home allowed me some extra time to go to the bank and run a few other errands.
This week my boss is out of town and I have to attempt to figure out how to do my first mail merge at work. Wish me luck. It's from a website, not from a list that I made and I am a bit concerned that I will pull it off.
Tomorrow I get to have my mammogram that they wouldn't allow me to last week because I didn't have the previous films, and a doctor wasn't there. At 8 a.m. when I should just be dragging myself out of bed I will be there trying to be perky. It won't work. Once I am done with that I will head to work and hopefully, I will be more together than I was today. Today I was so concerned about leaving Rob that I left WITHOUT wearing my winter coat! It had to be in the low 30s. I did have on a blazer and a long sleeve turtleneck. I didn't put on boots either. Went out in clogs and went without my lunch. I realized all these things as I arrived at the parking lot at work. Thankfully, I had my notebook that I need for work so everything else was ok. I did manage to run up the block in my blazer for hot soup for lunch. The town that I work in is the county seat and it's decorated so beautifully, but quaintly. I keep meaning to snap some pictures of the Hall of Records. Even the fire house has beautiful wreaths. It's nice to work in a small town. Little cafe's and delis are all around us and directly across the street is the best pizza place. There is another pizza place up the street, Federicis which is very well known for their thin crust pizza. It's incredibly good. Rob was amazed that pizza could be so good, in Rhode Island the pizza leaves a lot to be desired. The family has had this restaurant for over forty years. They say you can't go home again but I do. This is the town that I walked into after high school football games. Somedays as I walk up the street my mind will remember meeting my friends at the diner across the street. Christmas time evokes so many memories.
One of my favorite is when I was just 16. My first love bought me an engagement ring. I opened the box and there it was. It was a magical moment that I will never forget. Later my parents pressured me to break up with him. He had a serious drinking problem and that lead to some physical altercations. I think I was relieved somehow to have an out. Ironically, only a year later I married someone else. My first few years of marriage were haunted by memories of the first love, wondering what might have been. Eventually he married someone else but I never really gave up all hopes that someday we might meet again until I was divorced. I learned that he had lung cancer and was not doing well. He eventually passed away and only then was I able to let him go. I will never forget that Christmas though, or how much he made me feel loved. Enough so that later when my ex made me feel unlovable I was able to hang on to the knowledge that someone else had found me wonderful.
I should be baking cookies but instead I'm going to go watch the Devils play hockey.

Tuesday, December 06, 2005

A frustrating day

Today was a very frustrating day. I was scheduled to work. Rob has not felt well since Sunday. I finally convinced him last night that if he were not better by this morning to go see our internist. WE did just that. He has the beginning of pneumonia. A few good scripts later we are hoping he will rapidly improve.
Some time ago I had a problem with my sister. Ever since then we have had a very strained relationship. I have become increasingly frustrated with her. Lately with all the AOL problems and Rob not feeling well her emails have caused things to come to a head. In effect she wanted to know why I felt the way I did and I told her, clearly and with several examples. Instead of addressing them she responded with a load of psychobabble that would embarass Freud. It was I not she who went to college for psychology. She reads these tidbits mailed to her from websites and thinks she has tremendous insights. I only wish she did. Instead she responds that I am angry and need to search why. I responded that I have been taken advantage of for so long and have told her that until I accept that she will never change and have made a decision NOT to allow it any longer. I told her the source of my anger is being taken advantage of, particularly by people who are just rude and inconsiderate. What brought things to a head was what she did to my son. He had a collection of Hess trucks. She took them and told him she would sell them on Ebay and send him the money. Guess what? He never got any money and now she is insisting that both of us have faulty memories and she paid him. I guess that put me over the edge. My son really needed the money. She is very comfortable after her five year long divorce battle. She also went on about sisters being only a biological term and that her emotional sisters were her friends. The great irony of that is that while I can truly appreciate and relate to that statement, she has never to my knowledge, had a friendship that lasted more than a brief time.
I don't mind people being honest. In fact, I encourage it. What I want is for people to be REAL. I can forgive almost anything. Just don't cheat people or take advantage of them and then when you're faced with it try to say that they have the problem. That's just not an intelligent or genuine response.
I hope the evening gets better. If not I think it's going to be a night where I slowly become a vegetable..........probably a couch potato. Speaking of potatoes I should be thinking about dinner. Bon appetit.

Sunday, December 04, 2005

Snowy Sunday

Today I woke up at 5 a.m. and it was snowing. All in all we got about three inches. I love the first snow of the season, particularly when it's a day when Rob and I can stay home. I took the dog outside who went wild with excitment leaping in the snow and catching it on his tongue. He was only a few months old the last time it snowed and he seems to have forgotten that. It was fun to stand inside the warm kitchen and watch his joy. Then I suddenly remembered how much my late Sandie loved the snow. I felt a wave of grief wash over me. After doing a few things in the kitchen I went back to bed and slept some more. Rob got up again a few hours later with the pets and let me sleep in. He's thoughtful like that.
When I got up I told Rob that I wanted to go to Michael's and pick up some plain wreaths and ribbons. Decided to decorate the outside differently this year. I was working on a tight budget and got the seven wreaths for under $2 each. Ribbon was half price also. Came home and we had to remove the screens to hang the wreaths. Not as easy as we had hoped it would be but eventually we got them out. Rob was coughing all day. He has worked many hours overtime last week and all day Saturday. He is tired and I felt guilty asking him to get a few things down from the attic. His one day off but yet there are some things I can't do physically. Heavy lifting is at the top of the list. My chest just won't permit it and my arm strength has not been the same since they cut my chest muscles. Rob is always happy to help but I could tell today that he was not feeling well.
Some days I feel that Rob has been short changed. I try hard to do all that I can but there are many things that I simply cannot do. Rob has two steel rods in his back. He has no extra pounds on him. When he feels tired he doesn't want to eat and I worry that he will lose the twenty pounds that he has gained since moving to NJ. They are all he has to fall back on and when I met him he was underweight. For the past two years so much of our focus has been my health and things related to it. Now I am doing so much better and I want the focus to be where it should be. We are two people who found each other about five years ago. We should be focusing on us and our relationship not my medical problems. We never had a real honeymoon. We had two ceremonies one religious and the other the big affair. It was wonderful. Rob has given so much of himself.
Imagine being married to someone barely two years and having them wheeled off to surgery knowing the risks of having their heart cut into. The surgery was supposed to be 24 hours of recovery then upstairs. I spent over a week in ICU with so many problems. Rob was there as often as he could be. He still had to put some days in at work. He had used his time off and the days he spent with me once I got home were unpaid. I have little memory of the time in ICU except to know that something was very wrong. My kidneys shut down and they began to function only hours before dialysis would have been necessary. My blood pressure which had always been high was not very low. They worried that the valve was leaking and kept testing. It wasn't thankfully. Once I went upstairs there were more problems. Finally when I could come home I couldn't be left for one minute for an entire week. Rob never complained. He hovered over me and made sure that if I could only take two bites of a sandwich the sandwich was prepared for me and waiting. He had the patience of a saint.
I am determined to somehow do something for him. I have a few ideas in my head. I need the money to back them up. If I continue on the road I am with school and work I will get there. Someday I will show just how much gratitude I truly have. I tell him, maybe not often enough. How do you thank someone who helped you stay alive, or more importantly made you WANT to stay alive? Before I met Rob I didn't care anymore. I had survived cancer and was happy for that but there was no love in my life. I didn't hope to ever trust anyone again. Rob changed all that. He made me believe in love and take one more chance. I shall spend eternity trying to thank him...and thanking God for bringing us together.

Wednesday, November 30, 2005

Cripey as the New Zealanders would say.........

Today was not my day. After the day I had Monday I thought things could only get better. Today proved that might not necessarily be true. I got all spruced up today and went to work wearing my new blazer that I had purchased last winter but finally had the sleeves hemmed on. A black skirt, black blazer with the fringe and red stripes. Wore a red turtleneck and looked pretty good I thought. We were having a meeting at work and the boss was providing pizza and drinks. An entire office full which is rare. Here I am sitting across from the doorway of the meeting when I get a phone call from our IT person. He had to quickly hand up so I hung up the phone which is on the wall in the media room and my butt slid just shy of the leather chair. BOOM! My but hit the hard floor first followed shortly by my head. Did I mention that my blood thinner was working overtime and I was NOT supposed to get injured this week? I began to feel panicky but kept it under control. I was SOOO embarassed as everyone began to come in to see how I was. To think I wore a skirt for the fall. Sheesh. I assured them I was ok and I only had an hour left to work so I finished up the sheets I was working on and left. I am sore. My hand, arm, leg and head. I came home and my son was here. Trust me the nut didn't fall far from this old acorn. He was worried silly and wanted me to let him take me to an ER. I told him that I was ok. He got a light and shined it into my eyes to see how my pupils looked. He assured me that they had no signs of anything wrong. I called the internist who told me not to worry unless I began to have symptoms such as a rapidly intense migraine, throwing up, visual disturbances or loss of consciousness. This is the killer. It's Rob's dart night. I refuse to tell him and have him miss it. It's the only thing he does for himself. I will bite the bullet and watch Shrek DVDs to keep myself entertained. At least it's not two years ago where I would have had myself dead and buried by now. I'm a lot tougher than even I realized I was.
On a different note, some of you have noticed I removed Duffy's picture. Sorry but I was unable to decode the html and make the font big enough to read. I have tried installing the previous flower template I used and that won't load even though I did everything the same. I have uploaded the template to a URL and it still isn't showing. AT this time I am giving up on a fancy blog and going back to the standards.
I see that AOL put on a disclaimer about the ads. TOO LITTLE TOO LATE. They have made it really easy to leave them. Every IT person I talk to says they have the worst service and all the downloads they send are bad for your computer.

Monday, November 28, 2005

A day that kept going downhill

Did you ever have a day that just seemed like nothing went right?
That was my day today. It started nice and early when I got out of bed about 7:30 with a stiff neck. Drug myself downstairs for coffee when I realized that I could not remember how to get to where I needed to go for my mammogram. Called the place and got stuck in a phone system where you could not talk to a person. I was able to press a button and get directions, vague as they were. Was running late but managed to get there on time. I fill out the papers and they ask where I had my last one done. I tell them with the same group but at a different location. They want to know why they don't have the last one. I explain that a surgeon used them to remove a lesion and suggest they call him. His office claims they sent them back to the xray group. They promptly inform me after turning over the script that they will NOT do my mammogram. Why I ask. Because now that they KNOW I had a cancerous lesion last time, I must have a DIAGNOSTIC mammo instead of the screening mammo. Well, why didn't anyone tell me this I ask. They inform me that a doctor must be present for me to have the diagnostic exam. They will reschedule it for Dec. 8 and if I can't bring the old one, I must cancel.
OK...on with the bone density. By the way, since I didn't have both procedures done on the same day that means I pay TWO copays. Ok I say. I just want to get out of there and find where my old films are. I call the hospital where they did the surgery. Yes, the surgeon left them in the OR and they put them with my other Xrays. Thanks. I will go right over to get them. I called my mother hoping she would offer to drive. I am now so keyed up I was shaking. All the talk about cancer and the fact that they want a doctor there in case they find something has me a bit shaken. My father is yelling in the background. He is in a terrible mood, just like he was on Thanksgiving. I quickly hang up without asking her to go with me.
I get the to the hospital parking lot and spaces are at a premium. I spot a woman who is obviously on chemo slowly making her way to her car.I wait to take her spot. She took a long time but I was patiently waiting when someone behind me, I would guess her to be about 80 began to scream at me to get out of her way. I roll the window down and explain that I am waiting for the woman's spot on the right. She then throws her car into reverse and hits my rear bumper. I jump out of the car, with complete disbelief. I examine my car and it seems to have sustained no damage. Judging by her bumper, she has done this before. I tell her she needs to practice patience. By now my spot is clear and I pull in. As I walk through the area towards the xray file room, I see the blood lab and realize I am a week late in getting my blood tested for the coumadin level. I pop in and hand them my card. They inform me that the card has expired and I must go to registration again (every three months) and re-register. I bite the bullet and do it. Back to the lab and now there is a wait to have my blood taken. They finally do it and I make my way to the file room to find Doris, the supervisor who was the one bright spot in my day. I thanked her profusely for searching quickly so I would know if I would have to continue contacting other doctors instead. I can see that she is not used to being thanked.
I left there and decided to run into the mall and use a coupon to buy a much needed black belt. I get it and shoot home. I walk into the house and see the cardiologist's number on my caller I.D. Not a good sign that he called so quickly. I know he sees patients on Tuesdays. I call his office and the nurse tells me to hold on he will be right on. He informs me that my level is much too high. The INR level determines how quickly your blood will clot, or not. In my case, with an artificial heart valve you want the blood to be close to 3. I am usually about 2 - 2.5. Never 3. Because I have one of the newer valves, that's acceptable. Apparently my level today is just under 5! Never been this high before. I can't take my medicine tonight. He jokingly asks if I have been using my coumadin recreationally. HMMMMM NO.
What can happen with a level this high is many things, none of which are good. If you get in a car accident, you might hemmorage. If you get hit in the head you might. NO shaving.....anything. Be careful, no knives. If only I had a plastic bubble to confine myself to. I must get it rechecked next week. And he's lowering my overall dose. I hate this drug. Every other drug you take interacts with it. Last month I began taking Crestor to lower my cholesterol. It's possible that is what caused it to go so high. Whatever did it, I have to take a few common sense precautions for the next week. No knives.....I guess that means I don't have to cook for a week. There's always a bright side to everything. The trick is lookin for it. So, I am glad that today is nearly over. Glad that Rob will only be working until 5:30, not 7 as he had originally thought. Glad my car didn't sustain any damage. Glad that I found my elusive mammo films. No matter how bad any day is, there are always a few things that turn out OK. Now I just hope that my mammogram shows nothing. Time to have some tea and relax with my furboys.

Saturday, November 26, 2005


Today I received my Duffy template from Aman. Am experimenting trying to figure out what color font looks good on this dark background. This is my baby, the cutest puppy in the world right? Oh yes, it's like kids, everyone thinks that there's is the best looking. I happen to love this breed of dog, Shetland Sheepdogs. He's my third but first male and first biblack. The others have been the brownish color called Sable. He's a handful, keeps me moving! But I love him so much. When I saw his first picture at six weeks old my heart melted.

Friday, November 25, 2005

Recovering from Thanksgiving

I have come to the conclusion that if you're going to cook for five people you might as well invite up to twenty. The clean up is the big thing for me. I have to find the tablecloth, enough clean silverware etc. Then when it's all over you have to reverse the procedure. Washing so many pots and pans. I love to cook but don't like the clean up afterwards. Fortunately Rob did most of that for me.
This morning I have been trying to sort and tidy up my computer desk. I make notes, later I have no clue what they were referring to. I sorted through many of them today and decided to toss most of them. Fortunately in the clean up I was able to find the html code to put music in an entry. I love music. There are few times that my mood cannot be comforted by music. I have an eclectic collection of vinyl records and CDs. I like Irish pub music, I like classic rock, I like some ballads and even classical music. The only music I never listen to is jazz. Rob loves jazz. I took a class in college and tried to acquire a taste for it but I never could get into it. I did develop a passion for classical music and opera then. This professor was so wonderful. He introduced everything in such a way that you were willing to try anything. I couldn't believe how many punk rockers he introduced to classical who developed a real interest in it. For that class we went into New York and saw the opera Madam Butterfly. It was an incredible experience. It made me realize something, if you haven't tried something you can't know you don't like it. I began to try new foods I had never tried and found that I liked them. That's the beauty of learning. You're never too old to try something new. You never know what wonderful thing you might discover. Today, at least for me, marks the beginning of the Christimas/holiday season. I have friends who celebrate both Christmas and Hanukkah. I buy cards for both and gifts for both. This is the season that I will listen to and enjoy The Messiah. What emotional music. It never ceases to amaze me. I wanted to incorporate music in this entry. It's nothing seasonal but an unusual live version of Runaway Train by Soul Asylum. If you'd like to give it a listen Click here to hear music

Thursday, November 24, 2005


I am going to copy an article that was in IRISH AMERICA MAGAZINE Dec/Jan 2006 issue and written by John Cusack. I found it very interesting. (Many people do not realize that the Irish were treated very poorly when they first came in droves to this country to escape the starvation in their homeland. )
In 1621, the Pilgrims, just arrived in the New World, had no idea how wild their new frontier could be. Winter arrived and with it came starvation, death, and the idea that maybe it was time to give up and go back to Europe where the strict confines of politics were easier to deal with than the utter randomness of Mother Nature.
The real story of what happened next is all but lost.
On February 20 of that same year, a ship called The Lyon arrived and delivered much needed provisions which helped sustain the humble colony. The ship was sent over by a Dublin merchant whose daughter was married to one of the Pilgrims.
Grateful for their salvation, the Pilgrims dubbed the following day, February 21, a Day of Thanksgiving.
Over 200 years later, President Lincoln decreed the day a national holiday and moved it to the 4th Thursday of Nov. The pilgrims' amiable relationship with the Native Americans became the focus of the holiday, and the true origin of the 1st Thanksgiving remained misconstrued for 75 yrs.
The Boston Post, the largest paper in New England at the time took up the story in "The Observant Citizen," a section of the paper which discussed a wide range of topics. An unsigned article appeared appeared in this section which mentioned The Lyon as the ship responsible for the first Thanksgiving, by the writer claimed that the ship had come from England or Holland.
Irish organizations in Boston were outraged and cited anti-Irish bias as the reason for the paper's failure to mention Dublin as the true port of origin.
The writer of the article later acknowledged that he had made a mistake and promised to make a correction in the paper the following Thanksgiving. The correction was never made. Time quelled the public outcry, and the true origin of the first Thanksgiving is all but forgotten.

I have much to be grateful for today. The fact that I survived cancer, my heart surgery, my son survived leukemia. I am grateful for my home that is modest but filled with love and hospitality. I am grateful for a person who shares my life and fills it with love and caring. I am grateful for the friends that I have. I am happy for the many friends I have met thru the internet in both chat rooms and journals. You have all added to my life in ways you might never realize. I am grateful for my friend Laura who has been an endless supply of caring and kindness. I wish all of you a very Happy Thanksgiving and I hope you will all pause for a moment and think of the many blessings that you have as well. Peace to all, especially today.

Sunday, November 20, 2005

A Lovely New Look

My husband Rob found a great place here with more templates.
These were designed by Aman. Very talented guy. I just love this new look so much better than the other template. It takes time and patience to get used to a new format. I certainly wish that I could figure out how to do a few things that I have not been able to....yet. I keep telling myself: "Time and patience grasshopper." :) Although I have been able to post in my AOL journal the changes they made have brought problems into my computer which I still cannot get rid of. One is that I am frequently getting run time Error messages. Have searched through Microsoft webpages and not sure what is going on. Never happened before AOl's journal page changes. I am thinking it's coming from my office program. My computer is freezing. I have run numerous virus scans and Spybot and am finding nothing. It's just a conflict of something I am sure. Am thinking the only way to truly eliminate it will be to dump AOL altogether. It's Sunday and it's brisk here today. I have so many things to do today but haven't made it past the computer room so far. I am having my parents over for Thanksgiving. My one brother is in upstate N.Y., the other two are going to their mother-in-laws. We were invited to my friend Roz's which is so much fun. She has a huge crowd which includes her three beautiful daughters and their spouses and her grandchild, Maisey. After a feast they play games and a grand time is had by all. Roz is an extended part of our family. I am thinking I will have dinner for my parents early and then when they leave we will go to Roz's for the after dinner festivities. I keep thinking this may well be my Dad's last Thanksgiving. He has slowed down drastically and the doctors say he is in congestive heart failure. Half a year ago they speculated that he had two years left. It's sad to see your parents in this state. No matter how much baggage you have with them, you always hope that things will be resolved while they are still alive. With my Dad, I accept that he will never "get" me. Although it makes me sad, I finally accept it. He was born into a different world and will never understand what it's like to be a woman. Although he clearly favors his sons I'm the one who found him doctors and helped him through his open heart surgery. I have to be content in knowing that I have been a good child despite the fact that it was never appreciated. I had so hoped when he went through the same heart surgery I did that it would open his eyes. Sadly, that never happened. The inner child realizes that validation will never come. I think I can finally accept that but it's been a long and hard road to arrive at this destination.

Saturday, November 19, 2005

Devils Rule

It's a lovely Saturday here in Jersey. Had a great time last night at the Devils game and arrived home with a puck. They beat the Canadiens and it was an exciting game. They were tied at one point but our Devils triumphed. The one downside of the game was our seats. Although we paid $140 for them, and $10 to park we were in nosebleed land. Rob had taken care of getting the seats and I ASSumed (we all know what the root word there is) that he had used the Devils ticket office He had purchased them from Ticketmaster. Big mistake, they didn't allow him to choose the seats, just the general area. No doubt, we had the highest row in our area. It was 15 rows up into the top tier. I do NOT like heights. I cannot say that strongly enough. If you would like to know why I can tell you. When we were young children I tagged along with my older brother and his friends. When we lived in Norfolk, Virginia, my father was stationed there,my brother decided to pull pranks in a nearby apartment building. He would ring the door bells then hide by lying down on the stairs below the landings. One day I followed along and joined him. When I looked down ( I was face down)from the stair which was metal and like a gate, I saw the huge drop down. I became terrified. I could not speak or move. My brother went home and got my mother who carried me home. I couldn't speak or move for hours. That feeling has never left me. I have been to the Empire State Building many times but I cannot go near the edge of the roof. It's a terrible feeling. I did force myself last night to face my demon. I grabbed hold of the railing and slowly began the ascent to Mount Everest. My heart was pounding. My chest felt like it had a one hundred pound weight on it. At times I thought "I can't do this" but the adult subdued the inner child and I did. When I got seated I took an anti anxiety pill that I keep for just such emergencies. In time I began to relax and enjoy the game. It is disappointing that the good seats are so expensive now. I got spoiled. One of my wealthy friends had season tickets for the ninth row. Periodically she would give them to me and my son. They were right behing one of the goal nets.

On another topic, I am getting sick of some people saying that people were over reacting to leave AOL because of the banners. What some of these people do NOT know is that since those banners were implemented my technical issues went over the top. The first day they appeared ended my ability to post. For two days I was able to sign on through a different browser but now I can no longer do that. Often I cannot even make comments in other journals that are getting posted. It's not just about the banners, although that is a very valid issue. The crux of the matter to me is this: AIM people get free journals and with that, they have to bite the bullet and have the banners. John Scalzi wrote that the paying customers would not have the banners. What the poor business people at AOL might have chosen to do would be to give people an option of having the banners at a reduced rate. Well, AOL has made my decision to leave much easier for me. They have been unresponsive to my questions and complaints. No problem. Thank you Blog Spot for a banner free journal. I have had Verizon DSL for four years with no issues or technical problems. You see AOL, you needed me, I didn't need you. Companies who are successful should know that.

Thursday, November 17, 2005

Fritz Perls revisited (a 70s flashback)

I just read something interesting and wanted to share it. Remember Fritz Perls?
During the 70s he had a quotation that was made into posters (somewhere I still have one)

I do my thing, and you do your thing.
I am not in this world to live up to your expectations,
And you are not in this world to live up to mine.
You are you and I am I;
If by chance we find each other, it's beautiful.
If not, it can't be helped.
Fritz Perls

Apparently someone felt that he missed the relationship boat and wrote this which he felt much better described how relationships should be.

Beyond Perls

If I just do my thing and you do yours,
We stand in danger of losing each other and ourselves.
I am not in this world to live up to your expectations;
But I am in this world to confirm you
As a unique human being.
And to be confirmed by you.
We are fully ourselves only in relation to each other;
The I detached from a Thou
I do not find you by chance;
I find you by an active life
Of reaching out.
Rather than passively letting things happen to me,
I can act intentionally to make them happen.
I must begin with myself, true;
But I must not end with myself;
The truth begins with two
Walter Tubbs

I found this very interesting. It's a fine line between not giving enough and giving too much of oneself in a relationship. A line that often needs refining as time goes on. When I was forced to give I was angry and resentful. Now that no expectations are made, I find that I give out of want and I give freely and unconditionally. Instead of looking to the other person to fulfill my needs, I am more concerned with meeting his. No pressure, no obligation just wanting to please someone who does so much to make me happy and secure.

Making the best of things

Last night I sat here and cried. I feel like the night before graduation when you worry that your friends will all move away and you will lose touch with them. I am hoping that my many friends from J-Land will visit here, keep me posted with their new blog addys and via emails. I am glad to see some have already stopped by.

Today I am going to treat myself. My friend Laura and I haven't seen that much of each other recently. I have been going to school or working each day. Today I was scheduled to repeat a class but I didn't feel it was necessary and so I blew off school to have Laura come and visit. I need it. I need the kinship of a friend today. We will hit a few of our favorite bargain stores and then we are getting our hair colored with my new stylist. A real girls day. Tomorrow I have to work and then in the evening we are going to a hockey game. I am trying to focus on the good, fun things that are going on.

Last night I was realizing that I'm a person who doesn't like change, even when it's positive. I fall into my patterns of comfort and once I have established them it's hard to change them. I still have friends from childhood. I stayed way too long in a bad marriage because of fearing the changes that would take place, particularly financial changes. I have survived, and frankly, I am stronger for them. I have learned that I can eat cereal for dinner if necessary. I can economize in ways I never thought possible. Gone are the manicured nails but they have been replaced by a feeling of self worth and peace in my heart. What a good trade off.

I got married the day after I was 17. I never had a chance to live alone. To date as an adult (until after my divorce), to grow up as a normal young woman would have. Instead I found myself always trying to live up to expectations that were totally unreal. I could not fit into the mold that ex designed for me. There were countless years of me trying when younger, then revolting against it as I matured and became the person I now am. I was never accepted for who and what I am by him. I went against my family in getting the divorce and had no support from them in any way. Even they admit now that it was the best thing I ever did because I am finally at peace, and experiencing contentment. I've survived a lot and keeping it all in perspective, I will survive this too. Besides that, the weekend is coming. :) Peace be with you.

Wednesday, November 16, 2005

Another day of disbelief

It's been another day and I am still furious at the Powers that Be at AOL. I have given them an ultamatum. Ten days and if the ads are still there I am not just deleting my AOL journals but my accounts will be cancelled. I pay for one for my son as well. Having worked in customer service most of my life I am shocked at their stupidity.

Tomorrow I was supposed to go to school for a repeat of a class but I'm not going to bother. My friend is coming along and I'm going to my new hair person tomorrow night. She's going to try him as well. On Friday I work but then Friday evening I am thrilled to be taking my husband to see his first NJ Devils hockey game. It's a belated anniversary present. He was a Bruins fan when living in Rhode Island. So far the Devils are not doing that great this season. Often they start off badly then improve. Although I am glad that there is hockey to view this season, I have residual anger at them for what they pulled last year. I hope they can win Friday and rejuvenate my spirit.

I just figured out how to post a pic here. You go up to the top next to spell check and click on the picture icon. For all my former AOL buddies, be patient and soon we will be doing all the things here that we did over there. Maybe more. Remember that sometimes when a door shuts a window opens......we can be so busy looking at the door that we miss the window. Be open to new things. Welcome all my AOL friends who have joined me here. We will always be in touch because you have become for me a family of sorts. The ones that I chose.

Tuesday, November 15, 2005

Welcome to the new digs!

It's a sad day when AOL has pimped us out for months and then all of a sudden shows such total disregard for our journals.......and then they wonder why people are moving to other journaling venues? Besides that I am relieved in many ways. I had stupidly made my original journal using my real name and some potential employers had read my journal before I caught on to that. My real name can be used exclusively for business ventures and this can be just for my blogging. I am hoping all that feel this way will flee AOL like the Israelites fleeing Egypt. In life there are times where you are abused, but I'll be damned if I'll pay for that abuse. Show me some respect AOL, I've showed you the money for nearly ten years.