Wednesday, December 31, 2014


HAPPY NEW YEAR!  Yep, spent half the day at the infusion room getting the drip, hanging out with Louis and the rest of the gang.  Believe it or not, there was much laughter and hope in those green chairs today......and many hugs and wishes for the new year.

I slept most of the afternoon, hoping that I can stay awake for the ringing in of the New Year. Treatment number 37 today.

Tonight, my New Year's wishes for everyone........stay in the moment, live for today......there are no promises of tomorrow, not even for the next breath......all we have is this breath, all we have is right now.  May we all know love, may we all know joy, and may we all know peace.

HAPPY NEW YEAR.........2015......make it your best ever.

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

A Difference

a quote for year's end.......

"You cannot get through a single day without having an impact on the world around you. What you do makes a difference.  You have to decide what kind of difference you want to make. " jane goodall

Monday, December 29, 2014

Best Year Yet

Classes were good today, most are ready to face the New Year with a new life and new attitude.......
If you are at an addiction center during Christmas by the New Year, you are ready to let go of the past, release the old, and move on.  I passed out the sheets with the 10 questions from the book, Your Best Year Yet, by Jinny S. Ditzler.  I always tell my students they can read the questions and answer them as they read, but the most effective and productive way........write the answers down and be honest.

So here are the 10 questions.........

1. What did I accomplish?  ( I love that you are given the opportunity to start on a positive note)
2.What were my biggest disappointments?
3. What did I learn?
4. How do I limit myself and how can I stop?
5.What are my personal values?
6.What roles do I play?
7. Which role is my major focus for next year?
8. What are my goals for each role?
9. What are my top ten goals for next year?
10.How can I make sure I achieve them?

The first time I read this book and answered these questions, it changed my life.......I still answer these questions yearly......they are my personal wake-up call to the life I want to live.
I hope you find them as helpful as I do.  The book is one of my most treasured.

Sunday, December 28, 2014

Thoughts of the New Year

December 28, 2014..............I have great expectations for 2015.  I have spent a great deal of time the past few days thinking of what I want this coming year, how I want to spend my energy.

Treatment is Wednesday, yep......New Year's Eve in the infusion room......I figure we will have some sort of wild party.  :)  The rain continues to fall seems appropriate to have rain the last few days of the year......a washing of the past if you will, a cleansing.

Is it just me or does everyone contemplate their place in the universe the last few days of each year?
I am not big on resolutions, but I do my vision board.......I like to let the universe know some things I would like, a few paths I want to take, some experiences to share......and then expect the best.
It has worked well for me the past few years, I see no reason to change now.

Looking forward to teaching my classes tomorrow, sharing my thoughts on intention.
May your Monday bring happy surprises, and and peace.

Saturday, December 27, 2014

Saturday Night

It seems that the monsoons have hit again this weekend........for the past few weekends we have had downpours, three to four inches of rain.....but it sounds so nice on the tin roof.
Our friend Fred came for dinner tonight, he is our friend, my work mate, and our sound guy ........our lives are better for knowing Fred, actually anyone who has ever met him has benefited in some way.
I knew the first time I ever met him at work, that we would be great friends and now, well Fred is really family.  A fun dinner, lots of lively favorite way to spend time.

It is hard to believe this year is almost over.  We have had a great year for our music, really good gigs, sold some cds, met other good singer/songwriters.  We have done some much needed projects around the house.  Taz came to live with us.  The downside has been how much time the bouts of meningitis robbed me of time and we haven't traveled much......there is always next year.

Next weekend I will do my annual vision board, more about that later.
Long day and the sound of the raindrops on the's like a lullaby.
Goodnight, Sweet dreams

Friday, December 26, 2014

A Good Day

a good day, there was sunshine, a walk with the dogs ( well a run with Taz) and I taught two classes.
it was a  good Christmas, not too rushed.
Santa brought me a sewing machine, can't wait to make something
tomorrow lunch with friends, dinner with another friend
Sunday, Christmas with Rick's family
safe travels to those of you on the road

goodnight, sweet dreams

Thursday, December 25, 2014


tonight I give you a most beautiful quote, author unknown, but rendered on a piece of art by calligraphy and graphic artist, Michael Podesta.....

" If, as Herod, we fill our lives with things, and again with things, if we consider ourselves so unimportant that we must fill every  moment of our lives with action, when will we have the time to make the long slow journey  across the desert as did the Magi? Or sit  and watch the stars as did the shepherds? Or brood over the coming of the child as did Mary?  For each one of us, there is a desert to travel.  A star to discover.  And a being within ourselves to bring to life."

I hope your Christmas has been filled with good food, friends and family.......but, I also hope you find time to travel your desert, discover your star, and find that being within and give it life.
Merry Christmas

Wednesday, December 24, 2014




Tuesday, December 23, 2014

December Thunder

Rain has come down in torrents one point we had pink lightening.  For years Rick laughed at my folk wisdom passed down from my grandmother Mamie and my mom.......through the years he has grown wiser.   It might  be our Irish heritage,  my brother Ricky and I have always been fascinated with the weather, but so was Mamie.   Mamie's favorite weather wisdom was thunder in December, snow on that same day in January........I can't remember a time when she was wrong on that one.......will keep you posted on the weather here January 23.  Another bit of wisdom ( non-weather) that she passed on to me concerning mishaps with broken dishes, figurines,etc.........and maybe she was just trying to make me feel better.......when I was a child, maybe 10 or 11, I was looking at one of the many figurines that she had and I dropped it, of course it broke.  I was upset, but she told me that the breaking of something she cared for, protected someone she loved from being hurt.  Through the years, I have told myself that one many times, when a glass or dish was broken.

Most of the gifts are wrapped, I have not made my biscotti, will do that tomorrow, along with Christmas cookies and more spiced cider.  A bout with meningitis again last night and getting up with some bronchial stuff today, kept me from teaching my classes, hopes are high for Friday.
For those of you north and east of us.......rain is on its way, stay safe, and warm.
Goodnight Sweet Dreams
Happy Christmas Eve Eve

Monday, December 22, 2014

Christmas Every Day

a Christmas quote for you tonight......

"Christmas is not a season but a state of mind.  To cherish peace and goodwill, to be plenteous in mercy, is to have the real Spirit of Christmas."

If we cherished peace and goodwill and were generous with our mercy, every day could be Christmas.  We sing the carols, tell the story, but do we cherish peace and goodwill, do we show mercy?

Goodnight, Sweet dreams........peace and goodwill.

Sunday, December 21, 2014

Peppermint Memories

It has been damp and cold the past few days, though it is warming and storms are predicted for Tuesday night.......Christmas memories have haunted me more this year than in the past few years.
Rick brought home a couple of bundles of Bob's peppermint sticks this evening......I thought of my grandmother Mamie and grandfather of my very first Christmas memories is being at their house in front of their fireplace with an orange and a peppermint stick.  They were poor as church mice, but every Christmas, they had oranges, peppermint sticks and chocolate cream drops.
Mamie always got every child, grandchild, spouse, etc. something at Christmas, usually it was a pair of socks.  After Rick and I married, his first gift from her was socks, the name tag said to: jilder's husband.  My family called me Jilta, Jilder, and Jildabug.......what names.

So I ate a couple of peppermint sticks and thought of Mama and Papa, not much money, but a house full of love.  Always a roaring fire, and plenty of hugs......I miss them so much tonight.

Saturday, December 20, 2014

Christmas Memories

I am so excited, there is a rumbling among the weather guys here that we might get snow flurries on Christmas Eve.......I can't help myself......I love snow at Christmas, even if it's only flurries.
It has been an interesting holiday so far, because of the bouts with meningitis, we have attended only a couple of holiday festivities.......I have learned the hard way, that stress and fatigue up the chances of one of those little bouts.

Jordan spent much of today with us, he was so excited he got three new fish this died yesterday, and this evening another one died.  He is so sad......he was so proud of his fish. I hope the last one hangs on.

I only have about 6 more cards to paint, and then I can start wrapping presents.  I really miss my mom at Christmas.  After my dad died, I always took her shopping, did her Christmas cards and wrapped her gifts......yes, it was double the work for me, but I would gladly do it all over again.
I think about the last Christmas with my mom and my dad......there are parts of it frozen in my brain, as if some part of me knew that a couple of weeks later, my dad would be gone.  That last Christmas, I needed a Christmas tree, and for some reason, Rick was working or out of town and my dad dug up a beautiful cedar tree and brought it to me. That was 23 years ago and that tree is a monster now.
I won't have it much longer, when I planted it, I placed it too near the power pole and I figure the power guys will cut it down this spring......but it is a is one of those that when you walk by, the smell of cedar fills your nostrils.

I hope you all are making beautiful Christmas memories, remember to breathe......and Peace to all.

Friday, December 19, 2014

Jordan and Ella

Jordan and his friend Ella spent the day........we made Christmas cookies, cupcakes, painted ornaments for their energy left a few hours ago.
Goodnight, Sweet dreams

Thursday, December 18, 2014

A Little Bout

A little bout of meningitis today, Rick had to pick me up at work, could not teach my classes........I am a little bummed tonight and very wiped out from the fever.  It will be better tomorrow.
Cold and damp the past couple of days, this feels like Christmas.

My friends Linda and Teri from work, both gave me angel ornaments today....they are so beautiful. I am a lucky woman. Teri made me an ice pack for the back of my head and neck from a condiment bag in the kitchen......that is a true friend.  Then she sat with me until Rick came to retrieve me......and then laughed when I stood up and we realized the bag had leaked and my hair was dripping wet. I was a mess!

The weekend before Christmas......time has moved so fast the past few weeks.......and I am getting more and more behind.  But the good news, we have a new hot water heater, no more cold showers.
My warm and cozy bed calls to me.
Goodnight Sweet dreams

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Peaceful Nigth

Winter sunsets here in Alabama are the most beautiful.  It has been a hectic day......but I stepped out on the deck this evening to see swirls of brilliant light shimmering through the trees in our back yard.   This is my most favorite time of day, between daylight and dark.  The tall pines and bare oaks and hickories stood proudly against the ribbons of color......pinks, lavenders, golds, peach and blue.  Life is good.

Wishing you all a peaceful night.

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Tuesday Night Musings

I have been painting Christmas cards for the past few's interesting, things that I once could do for hours on end.......well, now I paint awhile, rest awhile.  Tomorrow the first batch should be mailed.  Treatment was December 3, so far, slight bouts of meningitis....... so much milder than the past three years......there is hope.

Three years ago this week, life for me ( and Rick) changed, the call from the doctor, all the tests and then IVIG treatments started.  It has been a bumpy ride and many times I felt as though I were in  the throes of a hurricane.  Lots of tears, an occasional pity party, many questions and until a few weeks ago not many answers.......but I have pushed to maintain my semblance of  normal. I have told myself hundreds of times that it could be worse, and it could have been.  The big green chair changed my world forever.

Tonight is the first night of Hanukkah, I hope for those of you who light that first candle tonight that the light shines bright, that blessings come to you and yours........and for us all......Peace.

Monday, December 15, 2014

a thought provoking quote for tonight......

"We think that the point is to pass the test or overcome the problem, but the truth is that things don't really get solved. They come together and they fall apart, the they come together again and fall apart again.  The healing comes from letting there be room for all of this to happen: room for grief, for relief, for misery and for joy."   Pema Chodron

Sunday, December 14, 2014

The Christmas Spirit

I think the Christmas Spirit finds us when we least expect unique and wonderful ways.
This afternoon a few of our friends from our musical think tank came over......I sat and watched them, heard their laughter......and thought about the changes that had taken place in their lives this past year.  One has made it through cancer, one has gotten married, one has made major decisions about their career, others who were not there had big changes in their lives too.  This has been a year of changes for many of us.  But, knowing how everyone's year has been, and then hearing their voices, full of hope and joy.......the Christmas Spirit found my heart.

It has been a year of changes for me too........I have lost friends and family members, struggled with illness and its treatment.  But love and hope kept me going, honestly, I think the Christmas Spirit is always's just called different things at different times of the year.......but it is always about hope, always about love.

This year is winding down fast, just a few more days to Christmas and then New Years.  If The Christmas Spirit hasn't found you, it will soon.......just open your heart, your eyes and your ears.
Goodnight Sweet dreams.

Saturday, December 13, 2014

Old Habits

Caregiver.....I have been one since I was a small child.  How can that be you ask?  Before I ever started to school my mom would tell me it was my job to take care of my little brother Ricky......I took my job seriously.  As I grew older tween and early teen years ( before I could drive) if anyone in the family got sick and needed a caregiver, my mom volunteered me.  I now know, that was not necessarily a good thing, but for many many years I felt it was my personal responsibility to take care of my family and friends, and if for some reason I failed at that, well I shouldered the blame, fault, guilt, etc.

I still struggle with that need to care, to make sure all is well, and if do whatever I can to fix it......old habits are hard to break.  My mother did not turn me into a caregiver to punish me......I think she thought it was a great way to teach me kindness and caring.......little did she know how obsessive I would become about it, how I would worry and fret, how  as a grown woman I would feel responsible for my loved ones.

Even today I have struggled with the fixation of taking care, of trying to make it all better......I know logically how foolish and harmful it is for me.......yet, old habits are hard to break.  There are positive things that have come from this twisted personality made me a good teacher, a good friend, a good wife......I just have to remember I can't fix everything......old habits are hard to break.
I think it is good some times to bare one's soul, to let other see the weak link in your've seen mine tonight.......and remember, old habits are hard to break.

Friday, December 12, 2014

Fun Times

I did Christmas shopping this morning. Jordan helped me trim the tree this evening.
Can we say tired but happy?
Tomorrow we do his Charlie Brown tree and I paint times.
Goodnight Sweet dreams

Thursday, December 11, 2014


"It is a happy talent to know how to play."  - Ralph Waldo Emerson

We all have that talent as children, for most of us, adulthood robs us or erases it from our memory.  This holiday season, find your long lost!  Play with the kids, with a pet.......remember the joy and happiness of play.   Promise yourself, at least once a day for the next few weeks.......I will play......I will laugh out loud. 

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Common Sense for Chronic Illness

I read an article in Healthy Holistic Living today about dealing with chronic illness.  I loved the ten common sense points so I am sharing them with you tonight.  Healthy Holistic Living is an on line magazine, check it out sometime.

1. Tend to your spirit
2. Speak your mind
3.Take things one hour at a time
4. Laugh
5. Avoid Stress
6. Remember the important people in your life
7. Proper Nutrition
8. Exercise
9. Take an active roll in your health care
10. Educate yourself

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

I Am Grateful

Classes today were exceptional.......sometimes the groups just amaze me.  The search for peace and joy in their personal lives have led many of them straight to the bottom.......with addictions, one tends to look for that joy and peace through alcohol, sex and or/drugs.  I love seeing their faces after their first yoga class or when they meditate and find that place of peace.

The moon is magnificent tonight, the telescope needs a little work, so Jordan will come over tomorrow night for his private viewing of the night sky.  Part of his Christmas present is a book called Stars that I ordered from National Geographic, he is going to love it.

So that is how my day has been, yoga and meditation and looking at the night sky as I drove home.
The cherry on top.......Taz was ready to cuddle tonight, and Calliou greeted me before I could get out of the car.  I also saw some beautiful Christmas decorations on the way home.
It has been a good day.......I am grateful.
Goodnight, Sweet dreams

Monday, December 8, 2014

Moon Blessings

I finally saw the moon tonight, and it is a beauty.  If Jordan were not asleep right now, we would be gazing at the moon and stars with the telescope.  Tonight I am so proud of him, my heart could just burst.......Santa came to his school today.  When it came Jordan's time to tell Santa what he wanted for Christmas, it was only a couple of things.......Santa asked him if he was sure that was all he wanted........Jordan told him yes, that he knew Santa had to give a lot of other kids toys because their parents couldn't afford to buy them much.  I wish we could all have the kind hearts that this six year old has.

As this cold winter's moon shines down on all of us tonight, I pray blessings of peace and joy for us all.  May its silvery light fill our paths with the light of love.
Goodnight, Sweet dreams

Sunday, December 7, 2014

Holiday Stress

That moon is just not cooperating........keeps hiding behind the clouds, even tonight.......maybe tomorrow night Jordan and I can get the telescope out.  This has been the elusive moon.

My siblings and I had our annual Christmas lunch today.  No gifts, no kids.......just siblings and spouses, food and laughter.  My sister Pat hosts it at her house and it is always a good time.

I hope that holiday stress has not reared its ugly face toward any of you.  When I think of all the times in the past that stress robbed me of holiday cheer, I am so embarrassed and sad.  Each time I invite nieces and nephews to our house, I always remind them if the visit causes any stress, to leave off my invite.......never ever never, do I want anyone to stress over visiting our home during the holidays.
I think of all the years and holidays of rushing from place to place, and honestly never getting to savor the moments........those are the things that I wish I could change.

So tonight, if I can help you or offer you any advice about transformation of holiday stress, it is this..... follow your heart, don't let anyone bully or push you into the craziness.......pace yourself......make memories, don't create blurs.........quality time, not perfection, not trying to please really is about peace and joy......not commercial perfection.  Take some moments, turn off the lights, look at the tree, listen to the music or the silence......make some personal holiday traditions  and don't feel guilty because you over indulged......don't forget the mistletoe.

Saturday, December 6, 2014

Busy Saturday

We spent the day at an IDF seminar ( Immune Deficiency Foundation).  Contacting this foundation has made a big difference in my life and disease and treatment.  If you or a family member has ( like me) suffered  100's of infections ( the majority of mine, lung) please contact IDF and consider getting tested for Primary Immune Deficiency.  It is a rare disease, only about 250,000 in the US, but there really is help through IDF.

There is a full moon tonight, and just like last month's.......cloudy skies.  I love full moons and so does Jordan, our six year old great nephew.  He and I talked about the full moon last night and how much we loved seeing it.  Our plans were tonight, we'd get the telescope out and look at the cold winter moon........maybe tomorrow night.

Three inches of rain fell last night bringing much cooler temperatures, thank goodness.  It had been in the 70's the past few days.  For me, it's just not Christmas if I can't wear my sweaters and boots.....of course, I am always cold, so I wear them anyway.......but I love the feel of cold air against my face.
Hoping that we can get our tree this week.  We get  a living tree ( our farm is covered in all those that we have planted the past 30 years).  I think I have my design worked out for our Christmas cards that I paint every year.

So that is how my Saturday has been.......wishing you all a Sunday filled with peace.
Goodnight Sweet dreams

Friday, December 5, 2014


a quote for tonight from one of my favorite yoga teachers

"Remember to give your attention to what is worthy of it."
- judith lasater

Thursday, December 4, 2014

Paying The Price

Feeling good, feeling the flow of energy as it moves through your body is something we take for granted......when it is no longer there, we are devastated and we want to be as we  were before.
Understanding that our bodies changed, that our lives change, that our energy changes is not a lesson any of us wants......but it happens.

We can fight it, get angry, have a pity party and live our lives full of remorse in the glory of yesterday. ......or we can work with what we have.  I had a great day this morning, my energy level was incredible, by 3:00pm meningitis had found its way into my head again.  I do the meds, hit the couch, ice pack on head, drink water and gator aide and wait to feel better.  In a couple hours the symptoms subside and I can function.  

Saying all of that to say this.......if you are to have happiness, joy and have to learn to go with the flow of life.  I have learned ( kicking and screaming, crying, etc.) sometimes you just put your big girl panties on, suck it up, deal with it, appreciate the good and learn from the bad.
Yep, I learned from the bad this afternoon......I overdid it when I felt so good this morning, treatment was yesterday, I should have rested......I paid the price.

Goodnight, Sweet dreams

Wednesday, December 3, 2014


Treatment #36........three years, measured out  month by month......the big green chairs were full today, but the holiday spirit refused to let any sad faces enter that room.  All those people, and no one turned the tv on......a miracle!  My drip, thick and bubbly as always, was a constant source of attention today, those tiny bubbles set the beeper off about every 30-45 minutes......why sometimes, but not every time, who knows?

My friend Louis was there in all his glory, he calls me the queen of the infusion room......but I promise, it is his court and his audience.  His kindness and smile touch every one who comes in that room.......he speaks to each person, always giving hope and encouragement.   I have learned so much from him. I see in him the true meaning of kindness, a real humanity.

All three of our nurses were so busy, but I noticed one, whose eyes were not as  sparkling as usual.....I worried that she might be sick, but as we talked, I learned her father-in-law had passed in the early morning hours........but yet, there she was, caring for all of us. Those nurses, they are amazing in their  dedication and caring.

The ebb and flow of the patients, the chatter, the constant buzz of the pumps......every person hooked to some sort of drip, such a surreal scene has become a normal day for me. It has become as much a part of my life, as going to the grocery store......or teaching a class....or performing on stage. It has changed me, in many ways......and I hope for the better.  How can you sit in those big green chairs and not become a better person?

It has been a long tiring body is ready for my pillow, my bed.
Goodnight, Sweet dreams

Tuesday, December 2, 2014


Back at class today, I have missed teaching these past few days.  It is hard not to be angry when illness keeps you from doing what you love.  The meningitis hit last Tuesday, the fever finally broke last I felt like Jilda again.  Treatment tomorrow......the circle begins all over.

Driving home tonight I kept looking up at the sky, the half moon at times was encircled by wispy clouds and at times hidden by them.  Nights like tonight confirm my belief in see a sky so beautiful, makes me believe that anything can happen.

Wishing you all a Wednesday full of hope, may you laugh out loud.

Monday, December 1, 2014

December 1

December 1.......the last month of 2014

December 1.......Happy Birthday to our moms, may they RIP

December 1.....Christmas decorations in the neighborhood

December to paint

December 1.....treatment #36

December 1.....9 years at my current job

December 1......Jordan and I hunt a Charlie Brown tree, he decorates it with anything he chooses

December 1.....Christmas cookies to bake, nieces and nephews cover them with sugar

December 1.....I bought a new red sweater

December 1.....a fresh living tree, decorate now, plant after New Years

December 1.....holidays are joyful and sad, I miss my parents and big brother

December 1.....wouldn't it be wonderful if just one Christmas, you saw everyone you love

December Christmas wish......Peace on Earth, Good Will To All Men.