Archive for November, 2011

We can never obtain peace in the outer world until we make peace with ourselves.
~ Dalai Lama

I think my peace has been misplaced.   It’s not like I haven’t been trying to find it.  I’ve spent so much time looking…obviously not enough.  Maybe I don’t know the meaning of peace, as he is referring to.  I’ve found a couple things I’d like to share with you.

Ten signs and symptoms of Inner Peace:

  • A tendency to think and act spontaneously rather than on fears based on past experiences
  • An unmistakable ability to enjoy each moment
  • A loss of interest in judging other people
  • A loss of interest in interpreting the actions of others
  • A loss of interest in conflict
  • A loss of the ability to worry
  • Frequent overwhelming episodes of appreciation
  • Contented feelings of connectedness with others and nature
  • Frequent attacks of smiling
  • An increased susceptibility to the love extended by others as well as the uncontrollable urge to extend it
~ Peace Pilgrim

So, I know I absolutely don’t have inner peace if the above is anywhere close to the truth.   It’s ok.   I guess it’s like the pursuit of happiness…you just have to continuously work on achieving it.

The most important factor in maintaining peace within oneself. In the face of any difficulty, is one-mental attitude.  If it is distorted by such feelings as anger, attachment or jealousy, then even the most comfortable environment will bring one no peace. On the other hand, if one’s attitude is generally calm and gentle, then even a hostile environment will have little effect on one’s own inner peace. Since the basic source of peace and happiness is one’s own mental attitude, it is worthwhile adopting means to develop it in a positive way. ~ Dalai Lama

Ya, I’m no where near any of this.   Anger, attachment, jealousy…i have it all.   Calm, (nope my blood pressure is almost 40 points higher than it’s ever been) gentle (nope, compassion for most things is almost non-existent) and hostile environments effect me now more than I ever imagined.

Guess it’s time to work on my attitude.

Is it my job to help others take responsibility for their own (attitude that is)?   I believe in some instances it is…what kind of person would I be if I was so selfish as to only work on myself.   There has to be a middle ground.  I don’t know how long it will take me, and then that means that others will be in this same turmoil for longer…

I wonder if it would benefit me to leave my phone at home when we go on vacation.   Hubby will have his.   Do I need mine?   I think I’m going to seriously consider that.   It’s one less worry, one less distraction.

…I’ll keep searching…I’m not giving up!




For BabyAm;  I love you.
You are my anti-drug.

Originally written March 23, 2006, by BabyAm age (almost 14).

My Family

When I wake up in the morning and see the sun – my family is what makes me warm.

When I’m lonely and sad my family is there for me, they hug me and tell me it will be alright.

When I’m happy they are always there to share my joy, to celebrate with me and kiss me.

When they look at me, call me, wave at me or email me I just have to smile because I love them so much.

But dope and alcohol can’t make you warm, they can’t hug or kiss you, sure it can make you smile but that’s because you’re stoned or drunk. It can never love you like your family can.

That’s why my family is my anti-drug.

My Writing

When I feel the pen hit the paper it’s like nothing can stop me, like I have no limits.

It’s when no on can influence me, tell me what to think, to write, to say or do.

It’s just me the pen, paper, and my own thoughts.

It’s when my imagination can run wild and free where anything counts and isn’t wrong.

It’s so fun to watch the pen dance on the paper trying so hard to catch up my thoughts and it never stops till I want it to.

And when I think about what weed and alcohol can do to your brain, your heart, your soul, your body, my pen just goes faster and faster and pushes on no matter how bad my hand hurts.

Then when I stop and look up to find out what I’m writing I read it and laugh, and I just keep going on and on because that’s what I can do without drugs and drinking.

You know why? Writing is my Anti-drug.

My books – Reading

Whenever I pick up a book I have an unspoken goal, a point I want to get to.

It makes me feel like I’m there, like I’m in a movie, where I control the characters and when they stop and go, where I can pause it in my mind.

I can go somewhere safe and escape from reality, I don’t need drugs or drinking to do that.

Reading can’t hurt me, can’t kill me, can’t make me feel worthless.

I get into it so much that I’m my own character, and I dream about being in the book.

Reading inspires me, makes me happy, it gives me a natural high that I don’t need drugs or alcohol to do.

I don’t even need to be prepared because all I need is my eyes and imagination.

It’s what I do. Reading is my anti-drug.

My Music

If I can feel the beat, hear the sound, sing along, or hum the tune you know I’m game.

I’ll dance like no one’s watching, I’ll sing like I’ve never sang before, and I’ll listen to the lyrics tell me a story.

When you’re high or so drunk that you don’t care and don’t appreciate it, well that offends me.

I love the music with all my heart and if you don’t respect it then you don’t respect me, and you better not cross my path because you don’t want to mess with me.

Club drugs and alcohol may make you dance and be happy but when I dance, it’s a different happy.

It’s a “I’m healthy, strong and don’t need painful, killing drugs or alcohol in my system” happy that makes me want to dance all night.

Oh and incase you didn’t know music is my life, music is my anti-drug.

My Future

When I look around and see what drugs and drinking has done to people I say to myself: “That’ll never be me.”

When I listen to the wrong decisions people have made in the past I say to myself: “I’ll never do that.”

When I see the successful people walking amongst me and they’re smart choices, I say to myself: “I hope that’ll be me!”

When I look up to the people who’ve made it far in life and without drugs or drinking I say to myself: “I hope that’s me someday!”

I say these things in hope for a better future, a great success story to tell to my grandchildren, to be known for something great in life.

I say these things for I choose my own future and I want that college education, I want the life that I choose without drugs or drinking for my children too.

I want to be like someone like them with people looking up to me because of something I did.

My life is my future and I wont let it get wasted, therefore it is my anti-drug.




Tonight sucked… But the Broncos won! I wish they cancelled each other out. no such luck.

Breakfast with JoJo and JPsMomma in the morning after the gym so I’m hoping tomorrow will be better.

Monday morning I have TWO appointments that are necessary and I’m excited for both. One is painful, one is e-VENT-full.

Only 12 days until I visit the Concrete Jungle Where Dreams Are Made Of… Oh how it’s much needed!

There have been several things over the past couple weeks that have made me smile.   I thought I’d better share them while they are still fresh.

This picture (above) was after many many many (Chocolate Cake) shots, is of JP’sMomma and I.   Hubby was letting me know it was time to take his French Maid home (some guys like curvy girls!) and The Catholic School Girl wasn’t havin any of that.   I didn’t know I could pout like that.  Guess I wasn’t ready to go home.   JP’sMomma just turned 40 the day before so, it was a Halloween Party to remember.   (And you’ll never know the whole story…)

Aren’t they cute?   BabyAm introduced us to her new guy (who needs an alias) at the party as well, poor guy got dropped right into the middle of pure craziness for the first time.  JP’sMomma and I are pretty protective of BabyAm…but unfortunately none of us were dressed the part except Hubby

…and if that didn’t scare him off, nothing should.

Here I’m freely showing my Hubbys backside (literally) so that you can see the work he’s getting done by Darcy Nutt @ Chalice Tattoo.   (Clicking on this picture or any of them will make them larger).  This is a version of the Wrathful Deity Palden Lhamo who is considered to be the principal  Protectress of Tibet.  I think this was after his 4th session.  Our great friend Luke has been making video’s of each session if you’d like to see them click here.

Another cute couple.  On this evening we were invited to Taj Mahal with “The Gang”.  I’d never been to Indian Food before.  It was fun, as you can see!  Afterward we all walked down to the Neurolux for a couple drinks and continued great company.  I love hanging out with Chad, Darcy, and Luke.   That specific night we had the pleasure of also hanging with Ashley from Hidden Hand Tattoo in Seattle.  She’s such a doll!  I wish I would have had her tattoo me!  Next time!

As Hubby and I were walking back to our car…I saw something pink stuck to one of those Newspaper Vending Machines…so I went back!   How cool is this?  Made me smile!  Nothing like lifting another persons spirit anonymously.   I don’t know who to give exact credit to, but…Caitlin at Operation Beautiful gets big props from me.  Go check out what she’s doing…I can’t wait to pay forward the sunshine.  (and yes, I left it there!  Maybe Darcy and Ashley saw it on their way back to the car too!  who knows!)

How sweet is this?  I really want to love this kid!  He took all the fixins (plus fresh flowers and candles) to BabyAm’s apartment and made her dinner!  People!  This young man actually picks up the TELEPHONE (gasp!) and CALLS (another gasp!) her to talk to her, and to ask her out etc…CALLS!   OMG!  He’s making some serious points with Mama Bear.  LOL

Mmmmm…fresh seafood!  This new restaurant opened its doors to the public TODAY!  Lucky Fins Seafood Grill.   (side note:  the website will be changing a bit in the near future, but for now, look at the menu!)  I must tell you that I have had the pleasure of watching this restaurant go from a shell…to a pearl!   I have been able to taste some of the most unbelievable food I have ever tasted, and met the owners and the Chef personally.  Additionally, we were invited to a private soft opening party/dinner on Friday night.  What a fantastic experience!  I just don’t even know what to say, other than if you’re local…GET THERE!

These people are getting there!  LOL – Just kidding.  I have no idea who these people are, or why they look to be the only ones dressed “down” on this particular hike/day…but I thought it was a hysterical picture, and I couldn’t help but share it!

I’ve still been running, doing weights and some yoga with JoJo…I wish I had pictures but I’m sure none of them would be appropriate in this post titled “Things that make me smile”.  So just know that I’m enjoying spending some time with JoJo, getting some exercise in and hope the weight starts dropping soon.  (all in good time!)

OMG, did I mention we are going to New York?   YES!  in just 20 days!   Flight booked, hotel booked, list of things to do in process.   OMG, NYC!   Neither of us have ever been so of course this makes me smile!!!

Recently, KK moved out into the country…well 25 minutes from town which does sort of constitute the country around here.   They are on 11 acres!

They invited us out there to celebrate Kool-aid’s birthday.   We couldn’t wait!   Both KK and I felt so excited to see one another again, that it was almost like Christmas Eve.   It’s been THAT long!

Barns, horse stalls (and a horse named Honey), an arena, and tons of farming land.   The house is amazing, and GI Jane has her own attached apartment out there which is nice as well.  Kool-aid can just run to his little 6 year old’s ever-lovin content, pretty much not get into too much trouble, and just be a BOY.

I loved it out there, so peaceful…quiet, serene.   I must admit I’m a little jealous but honestly I think I’m a city girl.  I think I would love to visit more often and soak up some of that wonderfulness she has out there, but I like being close to things…why?  I have no idea.

I was sitting on the love seat next to her, and she started moving around.  I thought maybe my foot was in her way (as I was sitting on one leg)…but she said no, and ended up moving so she was resting up against me.   Just like old times.   I really miss her.

Cancer takes a toll on everyone.   It sucks.   It’s taken over a year for her and I to find our “normal” again.   And I’m not sure that either of us have found what that means completely.    I know I’m getting closer, and I can see she is, just in her smile…we’ll get there.

Until then, I have this picture to remind me what a wonderful friend I have in her and that the bond we have is so completely different than what some might imagine.

                          I love you KK!


If you don’t feel like trying to follow this post, I completely understand.   I just decided it was time to do a little follow up about the past couple months.  There is NO possible way I can put it into any kind of chronological order, so I’m not even going to try.

BabyAm now has her own apartment, it’s super cute.  I however haven’t seen it for about 6 weeks, so I have no idea if she’s learned to keep it picked up or not.  Scary.   My house, however seems to stay picked up a bit more since she’s been gone.  It’s a third floor apartment which is a little bit of a pain in the ass (literally), but it works…it’s a great size and location for her, and it’s within her price range.

She’s actually only about a mile from us, so we’re close enough that if she needs something we can get there quickly, but far enough away that I don’t just “stop” by.  (and no, I don’t drive by either)…I am working so hard on letting her grow up.   I’m doing pretty well, I think.  (I still need lots of work really…)

I think I’ve got a decent combination of medicines now, which really seems to make a big difference in my life.   I have been seeing a counselor off and on for the past couple months, and it’s been really nice just to be able to talk to someone who has an outsider’s perspective.   I actually came home last Monday realizing that I’m not a mental case (so to speak) just honestly unable to really focus.   I’m trying to make that a little more of a priority.  I started a list, and am slowly working on getting things marked off.

Hubby and I were TOTALLY lucky, and given a ton of airline miles to use up earlier in the year, and we finally decided on…and booked, our destination!  NEW YORK!   Neither of us have been there, and so shortly after Thanksgiving we leave for 5 days.   We are super excited!   So many fun things to experience!

Hot Yoga anyone?  95-110 degrees in a room with 10+ other people sweating your ass off is really kind of fun.   However, the class I took was just a bit more than I was ready for so I have decided to stick with warm yoga.   It’s 95 degrees…and a bit more on the beginner side, I wish it was completely for the beginner though.  I even got up and made the 6am class a couple times.   It’s tough though, wears me out for the entire day.

Additionally JoJo and I have been working out regularly.  I have missed a couple days, either to a sore heel, or because I had too much to drink this past Friday night at a Halloween party, and needed some serious re-coop time. (that’s another post in itself, that might never get published).   We decided to start a Couch to 5K running regimen.   It’s been pretty fun the past few weeks to see our progress.  This week we are both a little nervous about, and I have some catching up to do!  Basically we run 3 times a week, and the program tells you when to walk…when to run and when to cool down.   It increases your running time, and decreases your walking time differently each week.  It’s a 9 week program, and we are trying to find a great 5K to run in the spring.   Something to work toward, and look forward to!

Couple things to add to striving for a healthy lifestyle…I’ve been eating a ton of frozen grapes instead of grabbing junk food…they are so yummy!  They are the consistency of a Popsicle, and they just grow on you!  The first time I bought one bag of grapes, the second time two bags, and this past trip I bought FOUR bags!!!!  They are all clean, and individually in sandwich baggies about 1/2 full.  I think I’m addicted.

Speaking of addicted.  Sugar, I’m addicted to sugar.   I would rather stop drinking coffee and tea altogether than not have sugar in it.   I don’t drink pop at all, so that does help quite a bit.  One Sunday a couple weeks ago I decided to try an experiment.  Each time I put sugar into my tea/coffee, I also put the same amount into an empty measuring cup.  I usually have one or two cups of coffee in the morning and drink hot tea throughout the day and into the night (including taking a cup with me to bed).  It was not as bad as Hubby and I thought it was going to be (and I didn’t cheat or slow down)…1/2 cup.  Please don’t even think of talking to me about ANY sweetener.  I’ve tried them all, and nothing is the same, or even close to the real thing…(yes…everything).

I’ll get this all under control at some point.  I’m feeling optimistic about that today.   Which again, is another good sign that I have a decent medicine combination.  Yay!

A couple things I hope to write about soon:

Our afternoon at KK’s new place in the boonies.
My new scrappin room.
No more Slumber Parties for me.
Hubby’s back piece.